Archive for July, 2015

Science, Magic and Truth

July 22, 2015

Nasir Khan, July 22, 2015

The reality of something is also the truth about it. Therefore, the reality of something and the truth about that thing are not two different things. The question is: How do we know the truth about something? The answer is: In the correspondence of any propositions/statements we make with the facts. If there is no such correspondence, then there is something lacking in the propositions we make when they cannot be validated. But there is a rational method rooted in empiricism to approach the facts about a given entity that ultimately may be the reality of that thing.
If we don’t get bogged down in irrational claims (magic and miracles included) on which any proposition is based to find the ‘reality’ of something, then we stand on some firmer ground when our propositions can be validated by corroborative evidence. If we don’t do that then we remain mired in the mud of confusion and make-believe fantasies. Science and magic cannot be put in the same category as both being ‘means to approach reality’. However, magic, miracles and fairy-tales are interesting and entertaining but they have nothing to do with what constitutes public knowledge about the reality of something.

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Nato is used by the US to exert pressure on Europe. Here’s how it’s done

July 22, 2015
July 20, posted by Morning Star in Features

ALAN MACKINNON explains how the military alliance is geared to promote Washington’s interests

IN MY previous article (Nato is the menace not Russia, M Star June 20) we examined the case study of Ukraine and discussed the rapid expansion of Nato over the past 20 years.

In this piece we focus on how the United States exercises its power over Europe — and why.

Firstly, it is often asserted that Nato is a purely defensive alliance.

Certainly, the original Washington Treaty which established Nato in 1949 was framed as a mutual defence pact with the emphasis on defence, security and protection.

Yet the reality of recent practice is different.

Over the past two decades an enlarged Nato has fought wars against a range of adversaries on three continents. None of these was in response to any threat to its members in Europe or North America.

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No scientific evidence of GM food safety: Norwegian Govt Study

July 14, 2015
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By   OpEdNews 7/14/2015,  Permalink

Reprinted from medium.com

From flickr.com/photos/68859904@N02/8854166005/: March Against Monsanto Salt Lake City, UT 5.25.13
March Against Monsanto Salt Lake City, UT 5.25.13
(image by SarahBethB1)
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A new study commissioned by the Norwegian government, and conducted by a nationally recognised scientific authority on the safety of biotechnologies, concludes that available scientific data on GM crops is inadequate to prove their safety.

The scientific report was commissioned by the Norwegian Environment Agency and completed last year, before being publicly released in June by the Genok Centre for Biosafety, located in the Arctic University of Norway. The Genok Centre is a nationally-designated centre of competence on biosafety issues.

Absence of evidence

The new study analyses a dossier by giant agribusiness conglomerate, Monsanto, submitted to the Brazilian government, and also conducts a comprehensive review of the available scientific literature from other sources.

Its focus is on Monsanto’s GM soybean Intacta Roundup Ready 2 Pro, which is grown in Brazil, and also authorised in Argentina, Paraguay and Uruguay, and probably also present in Bolivia due to illegal introductions from neighbouring countries.

 The report, titled ‘Sustainability Assessment of Genetically Modified Herbicide Tolerant Crops’ concludes that due to major gaps in the scientific literature, it is not possible to give a scientific verdict on their safety. Monsanto’s dossier, the report concludes, demonstrates a range of methodological weaknesses, and highlights the problem of incomplete information and research on GM crops in the available literature.

According to Monsanto, genetically modified organisms do not harm human or animal health, and therefore do not have any adverse effects on crops and the environment.

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