Thursday, April 1, 2010

News That Makes Me *Face Palm*

I read the news at work everyday. As a result, I have come across several stories that have left me scratching my head a bit, so I thought I would share the ridiculousness with all of you.

1. Geoengineering, the answer to Life, the Universe, and Everything

One day I stumbled upon an article about Geoengineeering, a "new and exciting" field that explores revolutionary methods of combating Global Warming. What these ever-so-enthusiastic Geoengineers are trying to do is "hack the planet". Hack the planet? Are they trying to relate to computer hackers? How clever! What does "planet hacking" entail? Bubbles! That's right, bubbles. One of their methods would entail creating a thin layer of bubbles on the surface of the planet's oceans so that it will reflect solar radiation back into space, thus cooling the Earth's surface. What an idea! The world's climate problems solved by bubble bath!

Another ingenious method proposed by the Planet Hackers is to release "harmless" aerosols into the stratosphere, creating a haze that will mimic the cooling effects observed after a volcanic eruption. Brilliant! Just blot out the sun and all our troubles are laid to rest. No evil solar radiation, no pesky humans to release evil carbon dioxide, no Global Warming! Awesome!

Finally, if blocking the sun and pouring bubble bath in the ocean fail, there is always genetically engineering plants to absorb more carbon dioxide. How awesome is that? Then we wouldn't have to bother with simply planting more plants that can already process carbon dioxide efficiently, we can just turn the ones we have into genetic mutant plants! Maybe we'll all get to live Little Shop of Horrors for real when the genetic engineering turns all of our plants into man-eating blues singers. Global Warming I hate you, Make it go away Audrey Two!

2. Ronald McDonald had a fat farm...EiEiO!

Normally the visage of Ronald McDonald would not have prompted me to read its parent article, but accompanied by the title "Retire Ronald McDonald!", I couldn't help myself. Retire Ronald McDonald? Whatever could that mean? Is McDonald's thinking about changing the mascot they have had for 50 years? Is he being laid off in lieu of Hello Kitty? No! Corporate Accountability International wants McDonald's to retire Ronald McDonald because he promotes the consumption of unhealthy food to children, thus adding to the epidemic of childhood obesity.

So, according to CAI, McDonald's is endangering the health of American children by target marketing fatty foods to them. Of course they are! How did we not see this before? How have we let that evil clown force his 2000 calorie burgers on our children? Wait, who bought them the burgers in the first place? Their parents right? Oh no, this makes the situation even more dire...Ronald McDonald is mind-controlling American parents! He is making them feed Happy Meals to their children every other day! Oh, and while he's at it, I bet he is telling them to not let their kids exercise either. He is also making them force their children to watch an average of 5 hours of television a day! It all makes sense now! Death to Ronald McDonald!

Wait, what?

3. The Big Apple should have no salt

A coworker passed this along to me, and so I am passing it along to you. A Congressman from New York state is proposing a bill that, if passed, would ban all restaurants in the state of New York from using salt in their food. The justification? Salt is a contributor to high blood pressure and heart disease, so if they ban it, they will go away! Right?

Ok, so they are not arguing that these diseases will go away, but they are arguing that it will force the residents of New York to eat healthier and raise awareness to one's own health. Right. It totally won't make people bring their own salt shakers into restaurants so they can give their food some taste. It won't make people stop eating out because they are outraged that their government is trying - ever so subtly - to control what they eat. It won't hurt restaurant business in any way and will end with everyone happy, healthier, and totally not missing salt. Brilliant!

So that is all I have for now. Perhaps I will continue these contributions of News That Makes Me *Face Palm*, because as Lewis Black so eloquently put it, you have to share the stupid stuff you hear (in my case read) with someone, or your brain will die.

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