Things I Would Have Blogged About...
...this weekend, had I been motivated enough to do so:
-- The public comment period for the proposed sonar training range off the coast of North Carolina has ended. Local newspapers used the occasion to write editorials opposing the range. In addition to a "blizzard" of form letters containing "identical paragraphs opposing the undersea warfare training range" there were lots of other submissions, including the NOAA letter questioning the allowed maximum sound levels I discussed earlier. See if you can spot the technical error(s) in the following statement from this article: "Southall acknowledged that the difference between 173 and 190 decibels can be significant, depending on the intensity of the noise and the period over which it occurs. Like the Richter scale for earthquakes, decibels are logar ithmic, meaning a difference of 10 decibels generally indicates a sound is twice as loud." (Here's a short primer on acoustics for reference -- check out Sect. 8.3.3. The thing is, this newspaper error has the effect of making the Navy look better...)
-- It used to be that protests against military recruiting on campus focused on the "don't ask don't tell" angle, hoping not to be seen as simply opposing the military because of what they do; now the protesters don't even try to hide their anti-military agenda.
-- CDR Salamander has more on the disbanded FY07 CDR Selection Board.
-- Some noted liberal think tanks have issued a report pooh-poohing the Chinese nuclear threat. While I'm more inclined myself to believe that China isn't an immediate threat to the U.S. (for political, rather than military, reasons), my initial reaction would be to look very skeptically at the conclusions of the report, due to the inherently political nature of the organizations (particulary the National Resources Defense Council) involved in the report. It doesn't mean the report is wrong, though -- just requires more in-depth analysis.