Category Archive 'Backpacker'

28 Sep 2021

The Media Constantly Serves Up Junk Science Bulls**** on Stilts, Example

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How do you brainwash the poorly-scientifically-informed masses into accepting claims of imminent climate catastrophe for which we are all to blame by indulging in the various comforts and conveniences served up by modern industrial civilization?

You do it by subjecting them to a continual barrage of entirely suppositious scare stories alluding to an endless series of untoward consequences that may, perhaps, possibly, arrive very soon if you fail to bow to the Luddite dismantle-modern-life-and-go-back-to-the-Middle-Ages agenda and surrender vastly more money and regulatory authority to International Statism.

Even minor special interest publications like Backpacker faithfully disseminate eco-extremist agitprop, however ludicrous.

Thanks, Climate Change: Rattlesnake Bites Are Likely to Get More Common

In the wake of a scorching summer across the western US, and with evidence of a warming climate everywhere, we may be at the beginning of a golden age for rattlesnakes.

Although there may be some evidence that rattlesnakes are biting more humans than ever, there’s no clear trend. Reports from the 2021 season are incomplete, but early indicators suggest that the number of bites this year has remained stable.

In the Pacific Northwest, poison center reports even modestly decreased from last year. “I’m actually surprised at the numbers,” says Courtney Temple, a medical toxicology fellow and emergency physician at Oregon Health & Science University. The Oregon Poison center took 28 calls for rattlesnake bites from January to August of 2020, but as of August 20 this year, had logged only 19. This year’s record-breaking heat wave may have had something to do with the smaller number of bites.

“It was pretty unmanageable during the day,” says Temple. “I’m wondering if that kept people inside.”

Data from the Southwest seem similar. Halfway through 2021, Arizona had logged around 81 bites, compared with 105 for the same period last year. At least through 2020, though, the nationwide number has been somewhat flat.

“It does look like the trends since 2017 have been rock solid in terms of rate of rattlesnake bites,” says Steve Dudley, the director of the Arizona Poison and Drug Information Center.

Nonetheless we can probably expect growing snake populations—and therefore bites—as the climate warms. A recent study on the impact of climate change on rattlesnake populations in the journal Ecology and Evolution suggests that “snakes will be able to emerge from overwintering earlier in the year and, in turn, wait until later months before going back into hiding.” More active time means more breeding, and more snakes.

A longer season would increase exposure to hikers (and pets), who should remain vigilant.


Note how the entire basis for the supposed peril is completely speculative and counter-indicated by existing data that is dismissed with a hand wave.

This rattlesnake jive is actually just one of countless examples of baseless supposed evils, all attributable to your living, consuming, driving, heating and air-conditioning your home.

A skeptical British wag, years and years ago, began compiling a list of all the bad stuff supposedly coming down the road that we are all to blame for. He quit updating Warmlist in 2012 with 883 items. Take a look and just imagine how many there would be if another decade’s worth of nonsense had been duly listed.

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