Thursday, December 30, 2010

HOT5 Daily 12/30/2010

1. "Don’t Buy Politico’s False Choice on Nuclear Power" Does nuclear power require big government?

Representative Sample: The premise of the piece is that conservative plans to jump start nuclear power plant construction conflict with Tea Party plans to shrink the size and role of the federal government since today’s nuclear power industry is dependent on federal loan guarantees.

2. "Top 5 myths of the separation of church and state" One of the better articles I've seen on this topic.

Representative Sample: despite pride in our democracy, the Constitution and Bill of Rights that guarantee our fundamental liberties, we are similarly misinformed about our rights under the First Amendment generally and religious liberty in particular.

3. "Is China’s military a paper tiger or a real tiger?" I would call it a partially-grown tiger cub -- dangerous, but still has quite a ways to go before reaching the full power of an adult tiger.

Representative Sample: With enough time, diligence, and money, China can fix its problems with training, equipment maintenance, and engine manufacturing. None of the input factors, especially money, are limiting in China’s case, a marked contrast with most other countries

4. "Using Google to Tell Real Science from Fads" I was unaware of the Ngram Viewer until I read this article.

Representative Sample: Google offers a handy analyzer, the Ngram Viewer, which anyone can use to test an idea. A case in point: Yesterday, the social psychologist Rob Kurzban argued that the tool can distinguish between genuine scientific theories and intellectual fads.

5. "What Possible Purpose Does America Serve In Weakening Its Nuclear Arsenal?" Good question and good points.

Representative Sample: Arms control policy seems based on the notion that the mere fact of military strength makes war more likely. It runs on the same thinking of gun control advocates, who feel that the mere existence of guns in our society makes our society more violent and dangerous. Both arguments are specious, I think.

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  1. @1: I want the government firmly involved in nuclear power. preferably, the same bits of government that runs our navy. What I don't want is the same corporate geniuses that run companies like BP to be in charge of any sort of nuclear power. We don't want radioactive materials in the hands of the lowest bidder.

  2. It depends on the level of government involvement.