Your weekly round-up of optimism I’ve noticed in the media:
* Bungs of cash bombard boffins: An Uptrend in U.S. R&D Spending: possible breakthrough period ahead…
→ “The U.S. is now three years into this stretch of real spending increases [on R&D], and it bodes well for the next few years. More importantly, much like what happened in the prolonged period of spending increases after the 1990 recession that lead to the technology boom of the late 1990s, this would be the first seven to eight year stretch of meaningful annual spending increases since that time.”
* They’re just about moan-aging: UK investment is at a record high. So why has almost no one reported it?
→ Only noticed by the financial paper, the FT.
* Many happy returns: “Optimism is a Force Multiplier”.
→ “The effect of a leader’s enthusiasm and optimism is incredible. The impact of leadership’s pessimism can be equally impactful but in the wrong direction.” This one is more from the ‘happy-clappy’ / ‘management techniques’ end of the optimism spectrum. But it has some wise words nonetheless.
→ Good news, we’ll adapt. But once past the headline and opener the article becomes infested with a swarm of ugly and disreputable headline-grabbing attempts, and the WGCU/WLRN journalist is obviously too clueless to challenge even the most basic of these. For instance:
“If all of Greenland melted, that would be 27 feet equivalent” of sea level rise globally, [scientist] Ben Kirtman says. “Twenty-seven feet is a little bit like the national debt. It’s beyond my imagination.” But, he adds, scientists are certain that people alive today won’t be around to see that.
Whereas he should have been honest, rather than grossly alarmist and highly misleading. He is slyly insinuating that one’s grandchildren could face 27ft of sea-level rise from Greenland alone, and the journalist is letting him get away with it. But we know, for instance, that Greenland’s ice-cap will still be about 98.5% intact by 2200 (more figures here).