I get e-mail from DDT cranks . . .

January 3, 2009

I noted the errors in a post at Reformed Musings.  Then I noodled around Mr. Mattes’s site,  and I dropped this note into his “about” thread, frustrated that I couldn’t just politely note the errors at his posts, where he’s disabled comments.

I said:

I wish you’d take comments on your posts. For example, you’ve got a couple of errors dealing with DDT in your post on climate change. It looks as though you’re hoping to sneak them past readers, rather than get the science right. I hope that’s not so.  By: Ed Darrell on December 31, 2008 at 7:41 pm

Mattes held that comment in moderation (afraid to let his other readers see it?), but responded in sort by diving deeper into wankery, with a post defending the more crackpot ideas of Michael Crichton, and straying much farther from the science in his claims about DDT and environmenta protection.  Heck, he even trotted out errors about Paul Ehrlich’s writing, apparently not content to be wrong about only DDT and global warming.

So, noting Mattes’s aggravation of his errors, I wrote again on his blog, a bit more sternly:

Shame on you. If you really think DDT is safe and that there was no science behind its “ban,” open comments, let us discuss.

But to compound your errors, and then to fail to approve comments from those who offer you correct information — well, reformation only goes so far, I guess.  By: Ed Darrell on January 2, 2009 at 11:56 am

Rather than open comments to discuss, and rather than respond to the post at the Bathtub, he sent me e-mail:

Shame on me? Excuse me, but I’m a bit amazed at your arrogance. You’ll offer correct information? Why, because others have a different opinion than you they have to be wrong? What are your technical qualifications and applicable experience, besides having a blog and a keyboard? Have you been to Africa? I have. Is racial eugenics your thing? Is that why third-world inhabitants are expendable to you?

Whatever you think you know, DDT is being successfully employed in Africa and elsewhere to save lives every day. No bad effects evident.  None. Their public health officials are literally begging for more. But then, their only agenda is survival. Selective and misleading reporting doesn’t interest them, only results.

Did Mattes miss many of the Tinfoil Hat Brigade’s concerns?

For the record, I don’t share Mattes’s fascination with eugenics as applied to race (and I’ll wager Mattes has no record fighting it); that tends to be a concern of the anti-science, historical revisionists (wrong about history, too).  I said nothing disparaging about third world peoples, and there are a dozen or more posts here to confirm my concerns about health in the third world, in contrast to only the junk science, “Let’s poison the hell out of Africa” attitude from Mattes.

In his second paragraph, he contradicts one of the main points of his first post. He says DDT is being used successfully in Africa — while his first post complained that environmentalists had successfully stopped it from being used.

That’s rather the mark of the true DDT sycophant, someone who suffers seriously from internet DDT poisoning:  The only reason they mention DDT is to find a cudgel to use against brave and smart women like Rachel Carson, or otherwise to criticize people who call for an end to pollution, or the preservation of water, air, trees or animals.  Unanchored by any fact or any need or desire to be accurate, they attack environmenalists, damn the inconsistency of the attacks.


He’s followed up today with a new post that assaults science at every turn, claiming to follow science journals, but instead citing the chemical industry supporters like Richard Tren, opposing the Centers for Disease Control and World Health Organization.  While complaining about “eco-socialism,” he approvingly cites the experts of Lyndon Larouche, the late Dr. Gordon Edwards, in all of his errors and all of the political wankery of Larouche.

Mattes has gone back to the false claims that Edmund Sweeney exhonerated DDT, and that “evil” William Ruckelshaus banned DDT anyway — completely murdering Sweeney’s analysis and the law behind it, and completely avoiding the law, the court cases, and the history behind Ruckleshaus’s actions.

In his frantic, apoplectic dance to avoid discussing whether he might be in error, Mattes has dived so deeply into the depths of tinfoil hat sourcery (no, it’s spelled as I intended it) that in the end, he’s not jus twrong, he’s not even wrong.

If someone criticized any translation of the Bible as carelessly and wildly as Mattes criticizes science, he’d be out recruiting neighbors with pitchforks and torches to march.

Mattes claims he’s done with the issue.  We can only hope.  To continue in his current trend, he’d need to deny gravity (both Newton and Einstein), atomic theory, and Linneaus.  But I also suppose it means he’ll never check here to see the facts.  Just when we thought we were making progress . . .

The real story about DDT, a few of the posts at Millard Fillmore’s Bathtub:

The real story, elsewhere:

At Bug Girl’s Blog:

At Deltoid:


Utah wins Sugar Bowl, 31-17; Utes #1!

January 3, 2009

Athletic logo of the Utes of the University of Utah

Athletic logo of the Utes of the University of Utah

Utah made its claim for the National Championship tonight with their shutdown of Alabama.

Here’s the music; below that the words.

Utah Fight Song: A Utah Man Am I

I am a Utah man, sir, and I live across the green.
Our gang, it is the jolliest that you have ever seen.
Our coeds are the fairest and each one’s a shining star.
Our yell, you hear it ringing through the mountains near and far.

Who am I, sir? A Utah man am I A Utah man, sir, and will be till I die; Ki!Yi!
We’re up to snuff; we never bluff,
We’re game for any fuss,
No other gang of college men
dare meet us in the MUSS.
So fill your lungs and sing it out and
shout it to the sky,
We’ll fight for dear old Crimson,
for a Utah man am I.

And when we prom the avenue, all lined up in a row,
And arm in arm and step in time as down the street we go.
No matter if a freshman green, or in a senior’s gown,
The people all admit we are the warmest gang in town.


We may not live forever on this jolly good old sphere,
But while we do we’ll live a life of merriment and cheer,

And when our college days are o’er and night is drawing nigh,
With parting breath we’ll sing that song:
“A Utah Man Am I”.



Morning-after updates:

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