Links 10/27/14

Links for you. Science:

Sorry, Cat Haters, Science Isn’t On Your Side
What if NSF preproposals WERE the proposals?
Reef sharks may already be adapted for climate change
Viral-research moratorium called too broad: Us government ban on research into enhanced pathogens also affects flu surveillance and vaccine work.
Why Ebola Is a Wake Up for Infection Control (excellent)

Other:

The horrific trickle down of Asshole culture: Why I’ve just deleted Uber from my phone
They don’t care, they just don’t care (very good)
U.N.C. Investigation Reveals ‘Shadow Curriculum’ to Help Athletes
Vast Majority of Americans Have No Idea How Health Insurance Actually Works (but we’re all supposed to be informed consumers. Or something)
Dana Loesch’s New Gun Book Botches Quotes From The Founding Fathers (she probably doesn’t discuss the freedom to hunt your slaves either…)
David Brooks, Edmund Burke, and Me
Micro-terrorism emerges as new threat in wake of Ottawa, Quebec attacks (if only U.S.-ian commentators were this level-headed)
Gay community under attack in Liberia over Ebola outbreak (Because what you really need during an epidemic is a pogrom or two)
Thrilla
We need less security, not more: Why the best response to the Ottawa shootings is to open Parliament to all Canadians—not to fortify it
Hispanic man delivers absentee ballots in Arizona: Conservatives demand he be killed
Felicia Day speaks out against Gamergate, gets doxxed

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7 Responses to Links 10/27/14

  1. GM says:

    A little math would help clarify the first link. There are an estimated 95 million cats that are owned (non-feral). The author claims without justification, “it’s probably next to useless against live prey (even if it does sometimes get lucky).” Let’s just assume that the average household cat get’s lucky with hunting once during it’s entire life, which is again seems overly conservative. That is an extra 95 million dead animals. That’s on top of the damage done by feral cats, which did not arrive via space ship. The level of intentional ignorance by many cat-advocates borders on republican-level.

  2. anthrosciguy says:

    There was a British study (http://www.mammal.org.uk/sites/default/files/Domestic%20Cat%20Predation%20on%20Wildlife.pdf) that looked at actual prey brought home by cats there and extrapolated from that. It’s a big number (the mean was about 11 in a monthlong survey). Mind you, it’s likely much smaller (for birds) than the number killed by collision with buildings whose lights are kept on at night, but it is a big number. And quite a few bits of cat prey are animals we class as vermin and would like to see fewer of.

  3. Jason F. says:

    Yep, to pile on here…that cat defense thing is pretty lame when it comes to their impact on wildlife. Merely asserting “they’re probably too clumsy”, not only without empirical support, but directly contrary to the data that’s out there, is not only unconvincing, it gives the impression that the article is in the same genre as fundamentalist Christian apologetics.

  4. David J. Littleboy says:

    “”There’s always going to be someone in a group who’s going to stand up and say cats are aloof, manipulative little devils,” says cat researcher John Bradshaw.”

    But that’s why I _like_ cats. They’re independent, think for themselves, insist that you treat them well, don’t put up with anything. Not like dumb dogs. Sheesh.

  5. Gingerbaker says:

    With one exception, I’m afraid Dana Loesch did a better job interpreting the quotes as supportive of the 2nd Amendment and gun ownership by private individuals than did Media Matters, who evidently doesn’t even realize that state militias were merely musters of armed citizens. She ought to be drawn and quartered, though, for not providing ellipses.

  6. anthrosciguy says:

    As are our Army, Navy, Air Force, and Marines. We didn’t just go out and hire some Hessians, you know. Of course, unlike the militias described in the 2nd amendment, hunting runaway slaves is no longer one of the stated primary purposes of our present day armed forces.

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