Physics, Israel and eternal youth. The best of rbutr #8

by Shane on August 6, 2014

Welcome to the eighth ‘The best of rbutr’ email. Big apology for the huge delay between #7 and #8, the reason is provided at the bottom of this email with a picture. That said, the wait was worth it, because this week’s email is a great one…
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Source Articles Response Articles
Technology
ya canna change the laws of physics image
Awesome! Kickstarter for AA sized lithium ion capacitor battery which recharges in 30 seconds! Or is it…?
BatteriesElectronicsTechnology
30 Second Charging, Rechargeable Battery – kickstarter.com Graphene / Lithium Ion Capacitor Kickstarter BS – eevblog.com
Someone has created a capacitor based battery which recharges in 30 seconds but lasts as long as a normal AA battery and they need some funding to manufacture them for retail sale. The capacitor will be graphene, not lithium ion, the creator hasn’t shown actual test results for the battery, the best known graphene capacitor can’t do what he claims his does, and most importantly, the maths simply doesn’t work out.
giant spaceship unrelated to EmDrive and nasa
NASA and the creation of propellantless engines. Are they possible or not?
PropulsionSpaceTechnology
Nasa validates ‘impossible’ space drive – wired.co.uk Don’t Get Too Excited About NASA’s New Miracle Engine – io9.com
A team from NASA presented evidence that “impossible” microwave thrusters seem to work. This actually repeats the results obtained by a Chinese team last year. Extraordinary claims require extraordinary evidence, and there isn’t enough evidence yet that this extraordinary claim actually works.
Gaza–Israel conflict
gaze under attack
Are Israel’s recent actions defensible? A look at why some don’t want to criticise Israel’s actions, and why others think they are inexcusable.
IsraelPalestineWar
Why Don’t I Criticize Israel? – samharris.org Sam Harris defends his silence on Gaza slaughter (or tries to anyway) – mondoweiss.net
Harris doesn’t think Israel should exist as a Jewish state, but also thinks that Israel has handled the conflict with extreme restraint and tolerance for the genocidal desires expressed by Hamas. Harris’ arguments are severely one sided, focussing on the negative aspects of Hamas as if that is all that exists of the Palestinians, and ignoring the negative aspects of Israel, such as the Gaza blockade and land grabs on the west bank.
Hamas tunnels into Israel terrorism
Media presentation of the Israel-Gaza conflict vs the numbers. What does Terrorism really mean?
IsraelGazaTerrorism
Tunnels Lead Right to the Heart of Israeli Fear – nytimes.com Terrorism in the Israeli Attack on Gaza – firstlook.org
Hamas has been building tunnels into Israel for years now, and Israelis fear that they will be used for terrorist attacks and kidnappings. If terrorism is to mean the killing of civilians as a means of furthering political or military goals, then who are the real terrorists in this situation? Hamas, having killed 3 Israeli civilians, or Israel, having killed 826 Palestinian civilians?
Lifespan Extension
Elderly People sign for ageing debate longevity research
Who will benefit from increasing our healthy lifespans?
LongevityHealthScience
This is thrilling life-extension news – for dictators and the ultra-rich – theguardian.com Ageing revolution must benefit us all – theguardian.com
As science approaches the possibility of extending our lifespans, it isn’t as easy to dismiss the concerns it raises as some would like to think. Ageing is a global problem and interventions that extend healthy lifespan would be cheaper than treating age related diseases. As for dictators – most die from violence, not old age.
Religion
Atheism billboard
Issues of race and diversity within the atheism movement
AtheismReligionSociety
Atheism has a big race problem that no one’s talking about – washingtonpost.com Atheism, Race, and Social Justice – atheistrev.com
The atheist movement needs to do more than trot out black speakers to talk about equality – it needs to start actively working on issues of inequality between the races and sexes. As important as those issues are, they are not the mission of secular and atheist groups. People are free to join multiple movements and can participate in social activism for racial and sexual equality AND a secular society without needing to get everything in one organisation.
Politics
obama speaking
Why are Obama and the Democrats talking less about income inequality after previously identifying it as a top concern?
InequalityObamaPolitics
With Democrats split on inequality issues, Obama shifts talk away from income gap – washingtonpost.com Obama, Inequality and Wall Street Donors – fair.org
Despite identifying inequality as a top concern while campaigning, Obama has shifted discussion away from talk of inequality as minimum wage and gender pay gap are thought to resonate with a broader group of voters. The Post frames the issue as a debate between left-leaning populists and “moderate” Democrats trying to avoid “class warfare.” But the piece offers no real evidence that people are less concerned with inequality or measures that might fight it.
You may have noticed the long delay in releasing this email. This is why… Leonardo Greenup was born on the 21st of July, 2014
Leonardo Greenup
rbutr

Thank you once again to the users who submitted the rebuttals which have made up this ‘The best of rbutr’ post: EEVblog, mleonard, scottmcgreal, and BTR.

On account of the recent birth of my son, there isn’t much that has been happening with rbutr over the last few weeks, but stick with us, there will be a lot more happening over the next few months.

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