Tag Archives: climate change

Everything is Newt Gingrich’s fault

And I mean everything. Whatever veneer of civility existed in the US Congress was very deliberately extinguished in 1994 by Newt Gingrich when he instructed his caucus that their Democratic colleagues were no longer ‘the opposition’. They were ‘the enemy’.

After that, and after being tossed out by his own party just a few years later, and after a few more wives, and after a near bankruptcy or two, and after a vanity campaign for president, and after being hired by CNN – proving their irrelevance once again – to resurrect the reviled show Crossfire (perfect casting, I must say), comes now his call for John Kerry to resign as Secretary of State. Because climate change you know.

There’s no getting rid of this guy.

aaaaaaaaa

 

No surprise here . . .

Granted there was major competing news over the last few days, but I’ll go out on a limb and say this chart would look exactly the same in a slow news week.

1172_472887582786122_21677922_n

No matter: it’s required to say ‘but on the other hand’

But equivalency is essential – we must report both ‘sides’ say our media stars!!! From here:

climate pie chart

If Romney were prez, that damn rude water would have stayed where it belonged.

And FEMA? You know Willard says give that function back to the States, don’t you? Well, Colbert agrees with him. On the Report the other night, Stephen sez “Mitt’s got it exactly right! States with shattered infrastructure and devastated communications systems are the best equipped to handle their disaster.”

One problem solved: It’s okay to be Takei. But what does one say in Virginia now that ‘climate change’ is banned?

Damn you Google! Stop fiddling. And make it rain.

Google has disappeared the bestest little – and most convenient – weather widget ever, the one I’ve depended on for a few years. Now there’s only a link to a less informative source.  That’s a very Microsofty thing to do – and not very customer friendly.

See, I’m very interested in the weather today and the teevee won’t do it (I continually miss the eight-minute mark on The Weather Channel).  Down here, we’re in our 28th month of drought (barefoot caution: the grass will cut your feet), and today holds the possibility of up to an inch of rain.  (The year-to-date normal should be 10.9 inches. We’ve had 3.4. Pretty much in keeping with the last few years.)

I just grabbed this from somewhere – it’s the current Doppler. See that little segment between the two big fronts? That’s me.

Rain rain don’t go away. (and damn teh google!)

You gets whay you pays for. And climate skeptics pay.

Mouthpieces are a dime a dozen. But they do get busy and quite obedient when the pay is really good. Like $8.6 million. From a single donor. Ever hear of the Heartland Institute? They are a right-wing think tank whose mission is to “cast doubt on climate science”. They’ve been around for a while, doing the dirty, making the world safe for fossil fuels, the ‘free market’ and the extraction industries. But a rash of newly leaked memos and reports – in a world of curtains to hide behind, that’s how we get our information now – gives us a glimpse of what’s behind that curtain . Who funds Heartland?

Most eyes will probably fall first on the “Anonymous Donor” who, the documents show, personally funded Heartland’s “climate change projects” to the tune of $8,602,267 between 2007 and 2011. The largest donation came in 2008 when “he” donated $3.3m – the same year that Heartland began its annual climate change conferences which have attracted just about every prominent climate sceptic since. This mystery donor has apparently pledged a further $1m for “climate change projects” during 2012.

That’s ‘personally funded’. A man. One person. Until now information about their funding had been sparse. The story in The Guardian doesn’t name anyone, but they hint rather nakedly that the wampun comes from  one of those famous American Libertarian brothers, whose ’causes’ usually align well with the growth of their personal wealth. (To be polite, Koch Industries makes some proper token public donations.

Click the chart for a clearer version.

From Greenpeace - IRS data

Of course, they get a little help from their friends.

Many of the Republican Senate candidates are signatories of the Koch Industries’ Americans For Prosperity No Climate Tax pledge and the FreedomWorks Contract From America.

Heartland is also committed to creating an alternate science curriculum in K-12 classrooms – which would be cool, eh? Combined with the ‘creationism’ curriculum, we could produce an entire generation scientifically illiterate.  (Now that’s the way for a world power to stay on top!)

So, we have an anonymous millionaire donor – whose agenda and/or vested interest we know not – funding an effort to discredit the teaching of climate science in schools? How can that ever be justified or considered democratic, let alone judged to be in the pupils’ best interests?

But the dropping of jaws doesn’t end there. Next up, we learn that Heartland paid a team of writers $388,000 in 2011 to write a series of reports “to undermine the official United Nation’s IPCC reports”. Not critique, challenge, or analyse the IPCC’s reports, but “to undermine” them. The agenda and pre-ordained outcome is clear and there for all to see.

The leaked documents are here.

Climate zones, they are a’ changin’. I think it’s Al Gore’s fault

For a long time, the US Department of Agriculture has designated different planting ‘zones’ throughout the country as a guide for growers. Their ratings are based on ‘extreme minimum temperature’. Garden books and seed packets usually say in what zone a plant can flourish and in what zones it can’t. But it’s the agricultural industry itself, the largest consumer of such data, that must pay the closest attention to these ratings to assure successful crop yields.

So with this change, the USDA now joins the Pentagon and NASA in acknowledging that global warming is real and must be part of all strategic planning. (I don’t mention any international science organizations or UN agencies because our conservative brethren know them all to be anti-American.)

My area of SW Florida has always been 9(b) – but now it’s officially a 10(a) zone. The temperature variation is not large (we go from a 5 to 10 degree variation to a 10-15 degree variation), but the USDA sees it as permanent.

. . . entire states, such as Ohio, Nebraska and Texas, are now in warmer zones . . . it reflects the new reality.

They’ve moved 18 key cities from Fairbanks to Honolulu into warmer zones.

It’s great that the Federal government is catching up with what the plants themselves have known for years now, that the globe is warming” . . .  said [a] Stanford University biologist.

This is unlikely to be the last time they will have to adjust the zones. What’s most shocking to me is the speed of the temperature change – the data they used was collected from 1976-2005. That’s stunning.

(Also, here in zone 10a, we’ve been in drought for four of the last ten years. )

I’m sure FOX News can straighten them out

They don’t listen to Rush Limbaugh, so NASA actually thinks the globe is warming just like those other delusional environmentalist whackos at The Pentagon. They even say so in this article at their website.

Just look at this lying timelapse video they created – Global Warming: 1880-2011. Disgraceful.

When did Rush add the ‘man-made’ part to his denial script?

A decade ago, Limbaugh had a grand time mocking climate scientists (his favorite target was of course Al Gore) for their ‘hysteria’ saying that the earth was warming. “The  whole thing is a hoax” he shouted across the socialist AM radio spectrum. “There is no warming” he shouted.

Vanity Fair listened to him in 2005 as his voice dripped with scorn for those warning about the consequences of a changing climate.:

“Even though quite a few scientists are now backtracking on their once-dire predictions of melting ice caps and worldwide flooding, Algore and a few hard-line doomsayers are sticking to their thermostats.” . . . . Similarly, Limbaugh scoffed in See, I Told You So, “Despite the hysterics of a few pseudo-scientists, there is no reason to believe in global warming”.

Now, here’s Rush in 2011 in a headline at his website:

The Manmade Global Warming Hoax Thrives on Faith, Not Facts

Notice the ‘manmade’ he’s slipped in there, shamelessly adjusting the script. It had to be changed of course, since it’s gotten a little harder to deny warming outright. His words this time start with the assumption that the warming is real – just not manmade. (He used the word ‘manmade’ in his little rant seven times. I counted. That’s not by accident.)

And still they listen to him . . .

Rush Limbaugh, that son of privilege and college drop out, knows nothing about the issue, cares nothing about the issue, but he knows what sells hemorrhoid creams and survival kits.

The future? Not my problem

This from Politico a few days back – the House Energy and Commerce committee which wants to block EPA rules basically (they want to override EPA on the science of global warming, cuz they’re all such great climatologists) – now want to forbid EPA from declaring carbon dioxide to be a greenhouse gas. Truth. They really do – rename it and problem goes away.

“Some Republicans refuted the claim that global warming science has been settled. “We should not put the U.S. economy in a straightjacket because of a theory that hasn’t been proven,said Rep. Joe Barton (R-Texas). “To put this amendment into the law I think would go against everything that people on both sides of the aisle say they’re for.””

That’s kind of the same reasoning John Yoo used to define torture – “it’s torture when it results in organ failure”. And heaven’s sake, we don’t need seawalls just because floods might happen. And why vaccinate little Johnny when it’s probably going to be little Susie who gets polio? Seat belts? Nonsense, I can’t see the car around the corner that’s going to hit me!

When Barton’s ‘proof’ arrives, it will be too late; perhaps he’ll see it when  his favorite golf course is underwater.

And then there was this from Ezra Klein:

Confronted by one of the most significant threats our planet faces, the 31 House Republicans charged with coordinating America’s response refused to even admit the underlying facts.

From Russia with methane

Here’s another climate change video from the BBC re the loss of permafrost in the Russian Arctic. The result is catastrophic as entire industries – factories, housing etc – were built on the permafrost and it’s now turning into bogland. This will make the buildings unstable and uninhabitable.

As the permafrost becomes bog, it’s releasing methane – far more dangerous to the climate than mere carbon dioxide. Methane is the gas that scientists fear the most and the gas that was identified as the trigger for the ‘tipping point’ in Al Gore’s An Inconvenient Truth.

Meet the man who would be chairman

Let’s have a big WhateverWorks Hi! to  Rep. Dana Rohrbacher (R-CA), in the running to be chair of the Science and Technology Committee in the frackin’ 145th Congress of the United States.  Here he’s questioning a geosciences professor from Penn State, who is way, way too polite and respectful. (I say that because I believe we are actually obliged to call a fool a fool when matters of public policy are at stake.)

Note: Rohrbacher isn’t big on evolution either, except as it “fits within the teachings of my Christian faith.” Dear elvis!

No need to listen to the answers (which aren’t well articulated anyway); Rohrbacher’s questions are just embarrassing (for us).

h/t greenman – I subscribe to his youtube channel where wonderful things pop up.

I know there’s no global warming cuz it snowed a lot last winter

A frequently heard refrain from the right (how in the hell did this become political?) that shows utter ignorance of how global warming works. It’s not too hard. Warming temperatures (mean temperatures – measured on a planetary scale) mean more evaporation from oceans, and the excess water rises into the atmosphere. Water has to go somewhere, requiring rain to fall – and now that we have more water up there, more water must come down here. That’s why we’re not expecting more storms, we’re expecting more severe storms. This is also why we had so much snow in the temperate zones last winter. The water goes up and the water comes down.

Here are a few facts about the ongoing flooding crisis in Pakistan (6,000,000 people directly affected; 2,000,000 homeless). Expect to see more of this:

  • one fifth of the country under water
  • two years of crops washed away
  • towns and villages across the country disappeared in two days
  • a year’s worth of rain fell in ONE DAY

Why we pay taxes

At least one of the reasons – and a real good one. So that organizations like NASA can educate the nation in science  while going about their work. They have produced this video at their Goddard Space Center. Which, incidentally, is where the much-maligned Jim Hanson hangs his hat.