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This is the second in an ongoing series. I started this series to highlight the week's science diaries in the "Grand Tradition" of Newsie8200. Many political issues will require input from the scientific community to make sound policy decisions. These diaries are either science based or about an issue science will/should be used to help solve.

Some weeks I may include a short diary of my own. All the commentary in this diary is my own unless otherwise noted. I will be experimenting with when I post this diary, so you may want to subscribe if you are interested.

More below the fold.

Some criteria for the diaries I will be including in Nerd Network News or "NNN" (Others may be added):

  • Diary must have verifiable sources.
  • Copyright standards must be followed. The sources must be quoted in part and referenced (no complete articles).
  • Writer must comment or show some analysis of the article (no "link only" diaries)

This is to try to keep the diaries as useful as possible. There may be exceptions if an important subject was brought up and there were no other diaries covering the subject. I will also highlight some diaries below with an *. This will allow those with not much time to quickly find the best written/important/interesting diaries of the week. If you disagree, please comment below to point out other diaries. If the diary title is not self explanatory I will try to make a comment.

The opinions expressed in the diaries are not necessarily my own.

If I missed anyone . . . sorry.

Featured dKos Science Diary of the Week
This is my favorite science diary of the week. It may be the best written, most researched, interesting or the one that generated the most discussion (rational or heated). This, of course, is only my opinion.
The ID Fraud: "Intelligent Design" For Non-Dummies by Paul Rosenberg
The diary is somewhat lengthy, divided into sections, in order to martial support for the relatively brief section at the end, "Focusing on the Fraud," where I cap my argument that ID is an intellectual fraud, that fails to met the standards of being a genuine scientific theory,  and make the further point that such fraud is central to the American conservative movement. - Paul Rosenberg

Picture of the week
Due to the many posts on the evolution issue.

Image Hosted by
This cartoon posted with permission of Dr. Nick D. Kim at Nearing Zero

Quote of the Week

[Those] who have an excessive faith in their theories or in their ideas are not only poorly disposed to make discoveries, but they also make very poor observations.
   Claude Bernard (1813-78) French physiologist, 1865

This Week in Science History

December 27
Beagle voyage begins

In 1831, Charles Darwin set sail from Plymouth harbour on his voyage of scientific discovery aboard the HMS Beagle, a British Navy ship. The Captain Robert FitzRoy was sailing to the southern coast of South America in order to complete a government survey. Darwin had an unpaid position as the ship's naturalist, at age 22, just out of university. Originally planned to be at sea for two years, the voyage lasted five years, making stops in Brazil, the Galapogos Islands, and New Zealand. From the observations he made and the specimens he collected on that voyage, Darwin developed his theory of biological evolution through natural selection, which he published 28 years after the Beagle left Plymouth. Darwin laid the foundation of modern evolutionary theory.

January 1

In 1946, ENIAC, the first U.S. computer was finished by John Mauchly and J. Presper Eckert. It was built at the Moore School of Engineering, University of Pennsylvania, Philadelphia, based on ideas developed by John Atanasoff of Iowa State College. Though not the first ever computer, ENIAC is regarded as the first successful, general digital computer. It weighed over 27,000 kg (60,000 lb), and contained more than 18,000 vacuum tubes. A staff of six  technicians replaced about 2000 of the tubes each month. Many of ENIAC's first tasks were for military purposes, such as calculating ballistic firing tables and designing atomic weapons. Since ENIAC was initially not a stored program machine, it had to be reprogrammed for each task.

dKos Diary Categories
Click on link to take you there.

Ecology and Global Climate Change
Medicine & Healthcare
Education While this is not necessarily a science category, you can not have good scientists without good education. So I will highlight education issues here.

dKos Writer's

Bush Administration's Environmental Policy . . . can you say oxymoron?

*Every eight seconds a child dies from drinking contaminated water by PSoTD
3 Mil new jobs, Energy Independence: Political Will Needed by BigDog04
Gas Drilling in Padre Island National Seashore by corncam
An example of California's enlightenment by PhillipG
Evening news didn't report forest rule change, gotta love the weekend/holiday news cycle by ivolsky
*Tsunami's deadly lesson: environmentalism is humanism by erinya
Pentagon to Screw the Environment by pontificator
*Global climate change: the permafrost is melting by Plutonium Page

response to believer in ID (long) by Sue in NH
*The ID Fraud: "Intelligent Design" For Non-Dummies by Paul Rosenberg. This is part of an ongoing series. The previous post can be found here.
Evolution, Intelligent Design and Dogmatism by azindy
Intelligent Design as an Assault on Reason by Adam Vinueza

What if Cheney had been right about bio-WMD? by epiguy Brings up the smallpox issue and how ill prepared we were/are.
Big Tobacco pimping parties on campuses by pamindurham
*Medicaid under assault by Repubs -- under the radar by therealcervantes
Marijuana initiative smoked in Nevada by fuzzywolf
Executive Hypocrisy on Medical Marijuana by Aethern
Amazing story: NM physician provides healthcare for uninsured by Plutonium Page
*20% of Employed have no Health Insurance by bonddad
Justice Dept: no info on emergency contraception if you're raped by pamindurham
Towards a rational pro-choice agenda. by CaliBlogger
FDA Approves Use of Ecstasy by lapin
Smile America: Dental Care now a Class Issue by DowneastDem
Sex Education in Kansas? NOT! by StevetheWeave

Cool energy idea: Kites by Devilstower. Devilstower has written some Fantastic articles on energy policy and Transportation. Check them out here and here. And another on Land use planning here. They are all long but more than worth the read. Give mojo.

Needless to say this week there was much focus on the Global Catastrophe of the tsunamis.

The Ocean Is by cskendrick
*Tsunami Warning Systems: The Technology and Communications Barriers by NotFuzzy
The personal stories almost nobody knows, but should by SusanHu
*Will you survive a tsunami? by SusanHu SusanHu has done a good job of reporting what we are doing here for a warning system.
*Incredible satellite images of Sri Lanka before and after the Tsunami hit by Jimmy Crackcorn This diary does live up to its name.
The South Asian Earthquake was Predicted on Dec 22/04 by catnip
Other Seismic Events in the last 3 days by jbalazs

Election Fraud and AI by RHunter
Priming the pump by electroniceric About the risk of terrorists obtaining a nuclear weapon (or is that nukular? I can never remember any more. Thanks a whole hell of a lot George!)
Overseer crashes PC's of people downloading music. by Eternal Hope
The Web: Homeland Security Style by darrelplant

*Anti-scientific method by ray z Do you want to obscure good research? This is the guide for you!
Is it time for a "War on Catastrophes"? by Jerome a Paris Questions our priorities when we deal with danger.
Darwinism good, Social Darwinism bad... by Winston Smith When good theories go bad!
Holiday Reading: Science Books by coturnix
A Cry From the Man In The Tin-Foil Hat by moon in the house of moe We are accused of being metallurgical chauvinists. This is only here because I thought it was funny.

Too Much Education = Turning Liberal by gfactor
College Campuses the Next Battleground? by roseeriter
Tech College makes Jon Stewart required reading by tdsmac
"Big Brother" Coming soon to a school near me. by Tomtech
The Purpose of College by ColdFusion04
Salinas Library Closing by smg225 Sad, really sad. Our priorities to maintaining democracy with an educated population are highlighted again.
EdExchange: My educational values by Liberation Learning

(listed by id#)
This is a list of dKos members that frequently focus on science. If you know of others that should be added please add their names in a comment below.

Paul Rosenberg
Plutonium Page

Other dKos Diary Lists

Newsie8200's "Newsie's Week In Reviewsies"
jotter's "Most Recommended Diaries"
Tomtech's "This Week in Fascism."

Previous Nerd Network News Lists
Nerd Network News - Week of December 20-26

Science And Politics by our own coturnix

Originally posted to SeattleLiberal on Sun Jan 02, 2005 at 06:23 PM PST.

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