What are the most dangerous terrorist threats? What are our energy options? Is Yucca Mountain safe? What are the risks of climate change, and what can we do about them? These questions are both political and scientific.

Do our leaders know the science of governing?

And, we ask this week, do you? (More)

First our customary thanks to last week’s guest lecturers. Last Tuesday, Professor of Neuroholdemology Caractacus explored a oft-used and little-understood word in Fascism, or fascism? And last Wednesday, Professor of Commuhealthmemiofieldrogueology TheFatLadySings shared part one of her interview with Bishop Gene Robinson, where he spoke on President Obama and “The Left.” Parts two and three – From Tolerance to Empathy, and The Greatest Coming Out Story Ever Told – appeared Friday and Sunday in Furthermore! All were great discussions, and are worth reading if you missed them.

This Tuesday, Professor Caractacus continues his Things We Learned This Week series, though he did not specify a topic. And as we have no guest lecturer this Wednesday, we will reveal the next mounds of our Bippies, the 2010 BPI Awards for Television Series. As always, Chef will serve coffee and bagels, and the Professor of Astrology Janitor will volley chuckles and bonhomie.

Note: We have Wednesday guest lecture openings for Morning Feature, Monday and Wednesday openings for the BPI Campus soapbox Furthermore!, and openings for our people-watching series Midday Matinee. Our friend rb137 has also begun an evening series, Our Earth, focused on environmental issues. If you would like to guest-host Morning Feature or contribute at BPI, please volunteer in today’s Campus Chatter.

Also: Please share your stories of offline political activism in Things We Did This Week.

And Again: Starting October 4th, we will change the DailyKos schedule for Morning Feature. The series will continue daily at the BPI Campus, and the Tuesday and Wednesday guest lectures, Non-Cynical Saturday series conclusion and Sunday “Ask Ms. Crissie” column will continue to crosspost at DailyKos. The Monday, Thursday, and Friday Morning Features will be posted exclusively at BPI. The Meta-Monday review and preview will be in a comment thread Sunday, and the Things We Did This Week thread will move to Tuesday. Please visit the BPI Admissions Office so you can join in the discussions there!

Thus we return to the plans of the resident faculty, which the staff sussed out when we saw the faculty wearing white lab coats and carrying a chalkboard from the wine cellar library where they spent the weekend drinking thinking on our motto of Magis vinum, magis verum (“More wine, more truth”) to the hot tub faculty lounge for their weekly game where the underwear goes flying planning conference.

That, plus we found their copy of Dr. Richard Muller’s Physics for Future Presidents. Professor Muller teaches this course at U.C. Berkeley. While Dr. Muller is a physicist, he wrote the book and teaches the course for non-scientists, so there are no prerequisites except curiosity, and no complex mathematics. Moreover, the BPI faculty read and will discuss the popular version of his book, not the course text.

As noted in the introduction, many important questions facing our nation’s leaders are both political and scientific. Not surprisingly, elected leaders usually know more about political science than the science of political issues like terrorism, energy, and climate change. Our news media rarely report science well, so we voters and political activists are often ill-informed as well … and that is not limited to conservatives.

So this week we’ll discuss what we should know about the science of terrorism, energy, and climate change, and how to share that in Fred Whispering with friends, neighbors, and others in our communities.


Happy Monday!