Singing About Science

You’ve probably seen it already (since I’ve seen it about 5 times from various sources in my newsfeed), but the Symphony of Science guy (John Boswell, aka melodysheep) has a new auto-tuned song out about climate change:

Also, Phil Plait called my attention to this moving (and scientifically accurate!) song and video about lunar libration:

That in turn led me to this video, from the same people as Libration (Matt Schickele, composition and visuals; Hai-Ting Chinn, voice; and Erika Switzer, piano), though this time with a different skeptic (Steven Novella) providing the lyrics. Also very moving (at least for me), while being simultaneously profound:

25 Responses to “Singing About Science”

  1. enkidu Says:

    Reminds me of the ‘Literal’ videos my kids are always watching.
    Kids these days! Offa my lawn dagnabit!

  2. shcb Says:

    I found this yesterday
    from Brian over at Samizdata. Every time I read something like this I remember back to a time when you all were so infatuated with the “reasonable conservatives” I believe some of you called them.

    Natalie Solent (the lady JBC was fawning over) had a great short segment the other day

    This August researchers making a first analysis of data from the European Space Agency’s observation satellite CryoSat-2 were startled to find that the loss of sea ice – as measured both by depth, and by area – was far more dramatic than their own forecasts had predicted. The summer Arctic could be an open sea within a decade.

    Guardian editorial, 17 September 2012

    Despite having a belief in CAGW two-and-a-half letters to the left of most commenters on this blog, it told me something about my own beliefs that my first thought when I saw this was “why have they reverted to making their bets public, short term and easy to measure? I thought they had given that up after the Himalayan Glaciers fiasco.” Only later did it occur to me that “they” might be making this public prediction because they believed it.

    ADDED LATER: 2022? No, 2016. Right or wrong, and I am inclined to think “wrong”, kudos to Professor Peter Wadhams for not hedging.

    I just loved the “Despite having a belief in CAGW two-and-a-half letters to the left of most commenters on this blog” line, so witty.

  3. enkidu Says:

    meh… that horse won’t dance

    two-and-a-half letters to the left… what’s a half a letter? a grunt?
    must be funny when looking thru a 90˚ polarizing filter (ninety degrees to the Right, orthogonal to Reality)

  4. shcb Says:

    I told it to my wife and she got it right away, and she doesn’t care!

  5. NorthernLite Says:

    Speaking of science… I’m not sure you should vote for a guy who wonders why airplane windows don’t roll down:

  6. shcb Says:

    he probably thought those little Canadian planes still had rollup windows, understandable mistake.

  7. enkidu Says:

    If you are too dumb to know why your wife’s Lear Jet knockoff doesn’t have roll down windows… you might be a rich moron.

    He also thinks cold fusion is a way of conducting electricity… breathtakingly dumb

    I believe in laboratories, looking at ways to conduct electricity with — with cold fusion, if we can come up with it. It was the University of Utah that solved that. We somehow can’t figure out how to duplicate it.

    Gosh I’m glad the magicians at the ‘University’ of Utah ‘solved’ that whole pesky ‘cold fusion’ thingee! Or did the bishops at the Mormon Cult Temple pray the neutrons away or something? “Believe”? Really? Belief? Science doesn’t need belief, we have these things called facts and theories and arithmetic and evidence and… oh wait, right wingers don’t DO facts or math or stoopid lib reality based thingees.

    It’ll be entertaining to see how shcb spins this as exactly the right thing to say!
    lolz! Talk about magical ‘thinking’… and this is the guy who we think should have a big role in decisions about climate, energy, foreign policy, war and so on?

    epic. f*cking. fail.

    Hey maybe we should chip in and buy mssr Rmoney Rich Muller’s excellent book “Physics for Future Presidents”. Oh wait, Rich has jumped the conservative shark and gone with the science on climate change rather than the woo. Perhaps Dennis Miller or Glenn Beck has a coloring book on basic science for Mr Rmoney? I’ll send him my 5th grader’s lessons as he completes them if that would help?

  8. NorthernLite Says:

    “I appreciate the fact that she is on the ground, safe and sound. And I don’t think she knows just how worried some of us were,” Romney told the paper. “When you have a fire in an aircraft, there’s no place to go, exactly.”

    Romney said the biggest problem in a distressed aircraft is that “the windows don’t open. I don’t know why they don’t do that. It’s a real problem. So it’s very dangerous.”


    That shows a shocking lack of basic intelligence. I guess when you’re born into a mountain of money you really don’t have to pay attention in school.

    Jesus Harold Christ…

  9. shcb Says:

    Well Enky, obviously the only way to spin it is “the man is a GOD! we should all vote for him, to not do so will mean you are a riligious bigot”

    (obviously I’m just kidding, don’t go off on me, well, you can, I don’t care but it will be meaningless)

    He isn’t perfect, but he’s certainly more qualified than Obama was 4 years ago and with the exception of a few shining moments Obama hasn’t impressed me. at this exact moment Obama is more qualified, bot only slightly, Romney will be better than Obama in 6 months where as Obama will be worse (using my values) because Obama will be a lame duck and won’t yet be in campaign mode for the next Democrat.

  10. enkidu Says:

    “religious” not riligious

    Did you hear Mittens thinks people who make $250,000 are middle class?

  11. shcb Says:

    typing on a small screen and too lazy to put on reading glasses.

    People making $250,000 (couple filing seperately) are middle class, they are at the top of the middle class, but they are still middle class. Most of the taxes are paid by people making say 40 to 70 k to about 250k, those under 40 k don’t count because they are net recievers and the numbers drop off pretty quickly after 250, a landscaper with 10 or 15 crews and a middle school principal could easily be in the 250 range and they would certainly be considered middle class if you sat next to them at a ballgame.

  12. enkidu Says:

    Forgive me for pointing this out once again, but that simply isn’t factually accurate.
    scroll to the chart under the Income section

    middle quintile: $35,000 to $55,000

    $250,000 and up is the top 1.5% of incomes in the USA

    facts is facts (and the facts don’t ever seem to back up your claims… just sayin)

    The Rmoney’s took a larger tax deduction for their dancing horsie than most middle income folks make in a year… $77,000
    ooops sorry, another fact… facts is so dang lib

    Perhaps it would be appropriate to review the terms “middle” “median”
    oh right, taxamagical socialism flibbertygibbit hurf durf

    that horse don’t dance

  13. shcb Says:

    To be honest the middle class tops out at about 200 but in a political season what’s 50k amoung friends. Go to the IRS website, go to tax stats and look at it, don’t over analize it look at the number of returns filed it’s pretty obvious. One thing that might be happening is we may be talking over each other, I’m talking about a couple or family or couple since that is how these things are usually referred to, you may be referring to a single taxpayer, whole different situation.

  14. shcb Says:

    We’re going to deduct a large portion of our trip to Europe since we spent a large portion of it at a dog show, it is legal and ethical, if you don’t like it change the law. Did Romney break any laws?

  15. enkidu Says:

    The chart I reference is from US Census Bureau data (somewhat out of date, things are a bit worse since the Dumbya Depression). The middle quintile (for the remedial that is the middle 20%) has an income of roughly $35,000 to $55,000.

    So Mittens is only off by a factor of about 5X. Or more.

    Based on the wiki chart $250,000 is the top 1.5% of household incomes.

    Please point out where I haven’t used facts. thx

    On your second post, since you are a hard right wwnj, I imagine you will cheat as much as you feel you can get away with. Typical. Knowing your ‘understanding’ of simple math, facts, reason, common sense yadayada, I imagine your return would be a convoluted mess of hijinx, hilarity and hurf durf.

    We will never know if Rmoney broke any laws as he refuses to open up his tax records. His Dad would be so proud: ‘Son, you shouldn’t cheat to get ahead’ ‘Up yours pops!’

    fun fact, the Romneys were on welfare when they fled Mexico – true

    that’s funny, I thought the gunmint was only interested in giving your money to ‘blah people’!

  16. enkidu Says:

    Carrying on with the novel idea that facts matter, here is Lenore Romney stating in her own words that Romney’s family was on welfare after fleeing Mexico. If you can’t invest a minute, skip to 0:53

    By Rmoney’s logic his Dad wouldn’t vote for him.
    &#^$%@!# 47%er! moocher! hurf durf!

  17. shcb Says:

    I think you were right when you said “Perhaps it would be appropriate to review the terms “middle” “median”
    oh right, taxamagical socialism flibbertygibbit hurf durf” minus the BS at the end. Except change the word “middle” to “middle class” since that is what Romney was talking about. This is where the class warfare comes in, Romney didn’t say the middle quintile or anything like that, he said middle class. That term is an abstraction, who is middle class? A guy with a couple yachts and or a corporate jet, no. Is middle class the landscaper and middle school principal? Yeah, I think they are, now if we consider all but the top few percent as middle class, so be it, I think that is great, that shows that we are a wealthy country with that wealth fairly well distributed if we consider such a broad cross section of the population to live so comfortably enough as to be called “middle class”.

  18. enkidu Says:

    So someone who is in the top 1.5% of household incomes is ‘middle class’?

    Do you realize how ridiculous that sounds?

    Evidently not, as you keep saying the same nonsense over and over.

    Let’s be generous and take a look at the wiki chart’s numbers. So the bottom 20% of household incomes is up to about $20,000 and the top 20% starts at around $100,000. If we were to be generous, then the ‘middle’ class extends from $20,000 up to $100,000 (note that the median, again sorry to use big scary ‘arithmetic’ words, is around $60,000 – that is the middle of the range of household incomes). This is an even broader definition than is typically used (25-50-25). With this generous 20-60-20 model it is easy to say that the first quintile or bottom 20% are poor, the second quintile is lower middle class, the 3rd quintile is the middle class, the 4th quintile is upper middle class. The 5th quintile is not upper upper middle class. >$100,000 and up is the upper class.

    ‘Middle’ isn’t the top 1.5% of household incomes. $250,000 income households are in the top 1.5% of all US households. If you can’t agree to that basic mathematical fact, then discussion of facts like 2+2 = 4 is beyond your ken.

    By definition, the top 1.5% of household incomes are. not. in. the. middle.

    Pretending ‘that wealth is fairly well distributed’ does not make it so.

    I pity those nuns, I’m sure they graduated you just to get you to stfu.

  19. shcb Says:

    Shoot, Bob Seger even wrote a song about it, UMC (upper middle class) take a listen since 72 was probably before your time, he is describing someone with a higher lifestyle than I. I’m not disputing your numbers, but if I have a friend that is a school principal and a hard working landscaper, I would not consider them upper class even though both of them make more money than I.

  20. enkidu Says:

    The middle is around $58,000. That varies by locality to be sure. A broader definition is between $20k and $100k.

    Saying $250,000 is middle class is not factually correct. Facts is facts. Fish is fish.

  21. knarlyknight Says:

    Looking at any definition, for example wiki, it’s hard to bend oneself into enough bias to consider a person earning $250,000 as middle class:

    Principals and other senior managers are by definition upper class, as are business owners with similar incomes whether they assemble helicopters or mow lawns. If you think middle class is $250,000 that shows your sense of your society has a serious tilt.

    (By the way, I’m not so sure Obama is any better on this middle class notion. The difference is that he doesn’t have a bunch of lap dog trolls like shcb to argue ad nauseum that he is right when he isn’t.)

  22. shcb Says:

    You make a good point that the “middle” depends on where you are in the spectrum. A kid just starting out making $12 and hour would look at me and consider me upper class, mainly because he doesn’t know or work with many making high 5 figures. I on the other hand routinely work with people making low 6 figures, if their wives or husbands make the same they are in the 200 to 250 range. They don’t live much differently from me. We take a nice vacation every few years, they take one every year or maybe a couple, I drive nice cars they drive nice luxury cars, but not Lamborghinis, they have plenty of money to pay for their kids to go to college but it is still a bit of a struggle. But they still have to go to the same office every day and for the most part do a repetitive mundane task. See where I’m going with this? If you look at the spread of returns filed by couples on the IRS site by income level it is fairly consistent from 40 to 70 up to 200, after that it falls off drastically, it also falls off drastically at the other end, but not quite so.

    Now if a politician uses more precise terms like Enky is using, a certain percentile or a certain bracket and is wrong, that is another thing. This is common in a political season, side a uses a quote or a vote that side b said or voted, twists it around by redefining the terms and then calls the other side all kinds of mean and nasty things.

    Here’s an example, every Republican it seems is being accused of voting against abortion even in cases of incest and rape. So where does this come from? Usually it is a vote for or against partial birth abortion, the pro abortion people will word the bill such that a vote against partial birth is also a vote against rape and incest. This way they get to use the vote of politician against him at a later date if he votes against one portion of the issue, especially if they think the bill is going to fail, this is where lobbyists come in, they are constantly making deals and keeping track of the vote count. So at the last minute if your side is going to lose, you add a section that will make your opponent look bad at a later date. It happens on both sides on every issue, it is the chess match aspect of politics.

    This just seems to fit into Enky’s thought process, he can’t seem to understand the other side’s point or how his or the other sides gamesmanship might be shaping the issue. Which is why he is having such a hard time understanding we are talking about two different things, there is an abstract “middle class” and then there is a precise “medium income”. I find that part of politics intriguing, maybe it’s because I’ve dabbled in politics a couple times and have been bested by people who are much better than I because it is their lives. I suppose I could be bitter, but I prefer to look at it as if I had been bested in a sporting contest, I would rather admire the cunning and skill and learn from than let it eat me up. Sometimes emotions get the better of me, I’m only human but as a rule I don’t take this stuff that serious.

  23. knarlyknight Says:

    Nice try shcb, but that horse doesn’t dance.

    Middle class is inexorably linked to income, and no matter how you want to slice and dice someone making $250,000, i.e. the top 1.5% of household income, is nowhere near ‘middle class’.

    It’s common sense, your writhing writing notwithstanding.

    “Depending on class model used, the middle class may constitute anywhere from 25% to 66% of households.”

  24. shcb Says:

    ok, whatever

  25. enkidu Says:

    I understand your taxamagical flibbertigibbet, but the rub for you is that I don’t agree with it. Why? Because all too often wwnj ‘thinking’ is magical bullshit.

    My 20 to 80% was a generous definition of “middle class’. More so than most typical definitions. If you are talking about the top 1% to 1.5% of incomes as middle class… one has to look at the facts and conclude that you believe utter nonsense because it fits your viewpoint and the facts be damned. The top 1% of incomes in America is. not. middle. class. Facts is facts. 2+2 does not equal purple.

    Yet you keep flogging that dead horse because Mitt Romney said it. Party before country used to be your party’s problem. Now it is party before reality.

    That horse won’t dance. Despite the $77,000 tax break for said horsie.

    Reality is a bitch, or maybe a mare (that dances)

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