Posts Tagged ‘climate change’

In case the Russian spy drama overly sidetracked anyone, the following bills have been introduced quietly, I might add.

 

  1. HR 861 Terminate the Environmental Protection Agency. This means that Lake Michigan will be totally poisoned in a year. The great Lakes are basically static. They all only empty through one river, the St. Lawrence, so they retain pollutants. Lake Michigan unfortunately lies within U.S. boundaries with a multitude of mills, heavy populations near the shores, so heavy pollution. The lake was thought to be beyond saving, but due to efforts by the EPA it is just now starting to recover. Now heaven forbid that corporate America has to spend some profit and not dump their pollutants untreated into this body of water. The Great Lakes are the largest source of fresh water on the planet, and all of them are polluted to one extent or the other!

 

  1. HR 610 Vouchers for Public Education
! Voucher programs have shown to be unsuccessful. But what is most important for you to know, the voucher program will only allow you to put your child back into the same public program, but with a lot less money available to perform its duties. It does mean the rich can now save a buck sending their children to private schools that you still cannot afford, while your child gets even less of an education than before!            
  2. HR 899 Terminates the Department of Education
! So yes, they need to terminate anyone that might forewarn you about the ass kicking you are about to take!
  1. HJR 69 Repeal Rule Protecting Wildlife
! I would thing that should be self evident, but it will not be!
  1. HR 370 Repeal Affordable Care Act! Ok, I won’t defend it, but make sure you do not let them remove it until you understand perfectly what it is you are getting. You know the GOP are claiming they have written a tremendous, wonderful, the best of the best, most fabulous replacement for the ACA. It is an insult to basic intelligence; it is nothing more than a tax break for the wealthy while ripping healthcare away from millions. Just be wary folks. It ain’t whacha think!


6. HR 354 Defund Planned Parenthood
! This entity is under attack because of abortions. But it does not use funds from the government to fund any abortions. So now all you are doing is taking needed medical help from people who cannot get it elsewhere.

  1. HR 785 National Right to Work (this one ends unions) If you are one of those who hate unions, well you have no idea what unions have done for you, even if you and yours were never in one!
  1. HR 83 Mobilizing Against Sanctuary Cities Bill
  1. HR 147 Criminalizing Abortion (“Prenatal Nondiscrimination Act”)
 Are we going all the way back to telling a woman to only speak with permission, to take care of the husbands needs above her own, and obey your man, or men if you don’t have your own man? I am a man, and even I know that is bullshit!
  1. HR 808 Sanctions against Iran

Since I started writing this the GOP has defunded feeding old people and children in need! The President just announced he will dismantle anything and everything that President Obama set in motion to fight climate change. That includes weather satellites controlled by NASA! He figures what you can’t see he can lie to you about! His meetings with leaders of countries that are members of NATO make it obvious he does not even understand how NATO works!

Look, I follow the writings of several highly educated people, Diane Ravich, for example, because she is plugged in way better than I am! Actually I don’t even know where the cord is! I recommend her to you, especially if you are in education. http://dianeravitch.com

I have no formal degrees. I am an avid reader, I do have a lot of technical training, some college, but as I said I never turned any of that into a formal degree unless Master Mechanic counts. However there is a humane way to live, a right and wrong that to my way of thinking is universal, it is not something you can parse out or budget out of existence. Kids, older folk, anyone up against it really, deserve to eat, stay warm, and live. (inside) Now that does not mean luxury by any means, but we, as humans, with a brain, conscience, and basic intelligence should not be debating this. As one of the richest countries in the world with all of the attributes that entails, it should just take care of its citizens, period. We can get into how we break the cycle of poverty, the dumbing down of America, the huge differences between poverty, middle class, and the upper crust, if you will, but we don’t put our basic humanity on a shelf while we figure it out! It does not take a genius to figure out right from wrong. I served my country, Sgt. USMC two tours in Nam as an avionics tech. I worked for 40 years. I never went on welfare and I worked for the same company for 30 years as a civilian before I got my second job! I am a proud liberal because I have a brain, a conscience, and I know right from wrong. I also know the GOP is totally out of touch with the people they are supposed to represent, and the current President lied to you big time and has mental problems. As I said before I do not have a degree, in psychology or any other medical field, but I know a rabid dog when I see one!

 

Climate Change for Idiots

Certain sections based on writings by Nonny Mouse in 2009

Posted on Crooks and Liars

This blog is not an exact repost, it has been edited, added to, and rethought by yours truly, but it has some extremely important points you need to consider, so I will illiterate them for you! But first lets look at some attitudes which are part and parcel to the problem. We have members of congress who believe the planet is only 6,000 years old, plus or minus 2,000 years! Now these are good Christians who believe in their bible, that it was written by God, and accurate in every detail. So Leviticus 18:22 says it is ok to own slaves as long as they come from neighboring nations, I guess turning your neighbor, who you dislike, into a slave was frowned on. Exodus 21:7 sanctions selling your daughter into slavery. Sounds to me like the sex trade was alive and well! Leviticus 15:19-24, well I won’t get into it, but it means I have to leave the house every 28 days and pitch a tent in the back yard. Exodus 35:2 clearly states that anyone working on the Sabbath should be put to death. I guess that means we automatically kill any politician during a reelection cycle! Leviticus 11:10 states it is an abomination to eat shellfish, 21; 20 says I cannot worship if I have any physical defects, like needing glasses or a cane to walk. It goes on and on, stoning people for planting two crops in one field, wearing two different kinds of thread, your cotton/polyester blend for example, gets you stoned, and not in a good way! I bring this up, not to make fun of, or belittle religion, but to point out you have to understand superstitious people wrote the bible, and superstitious people try to run the government based on what they think it says! It may well be the word of God, I personally do not think so, but man has always thought he knew best, even when it was God talking, so what God said is not necessarily what the “man” wrote down. Especially if he did not have the capacity to understand what it was that had just been imparted to him. I mean they also thought the earth was the center of the universe and that it was flat! I know, you are saying the person was directed by God and wrote as if he were God. But the scholars who later translated what was written were not possessed of God. The scholars who worked for King James, for example, who translated the version most of us have in our possession, were not guided by divine intervention. Oh, and this is way off point, but when you talk using thee and thou, verily, beseech, and other speech found in the bible you are not talking like a Christian or Christ, but like a really old Englishman, so knock it off.

So I do not want my politician making policy based on the examples I just gave, or anything else but actual science. I mean we have elected politicians in the GOP that say we do not have to worry about global warming because God is up there and he will take care of it! We have trees older than the bible says the whole universe is. We recently discovered a whole civilization in what is now Turkey that is at least 12000 years old. We can carbon date artifacts that are millions upon millions of years old! We can see fossil records going back billions of years! So when a politician denies science, and therefore climate change, based on who put the most money in his wallet that is neither good for me or for you! Pay really close attention to what follows in this blog, please!

So… a bit of Climate Change for Idiots to aid those of us who feel like we’re beating heads against the wall arguing with friends and relatives frantically denying The End is Nigh, all while driving their SUVs through the nearest McDonald’s drive-in, those poor benighted souls too obtuse to realize the causes of global warming are myriad, and that while – yes, they are correct, Big Biz and First World greed are busily maneuvering and dodging and scheming over who gets to profit the most from climate change – that doesn’t mean it’s not real. We’re too focused on the looters to realize that the city is burning down around us. Climate change is complicated, but not impossible to understand. Anyone with a driver’s license for that SUV isn’t required to know that d = V /(2g(f + G)); drivers instinctively know enough physics to apply the brakes long before the car needs to stop. The reaction time for a driver to start applying the brakes is 1.5 seconds. In terms of climate change, we’re in that reaction phase – and we’d better start thinking about stomping on the brakes pretty damned soon. A driver who doesn’t care about braking before they crash is stupid, suicidal, or crazy.

Let’s break this down into more easily digested morsels so that even those suffering from the current deficit of basic science in American school systems that their grasp of geological history is closer to The Flintstones than Charles Darwin can get a grip. Dick and Jane are in a jet, flying over Kansas. Look, Jane, look! The jet is leaving a contrail behind us. See the contrail form cirrus clouds. Contrails last up to eight hours, says Jane, and only half a dozen of them are needed to grow and form a cloud the size of the entire state of Massachusetts. That’s really big, says Dick. Woof, says Spot, shivering down in the baggage hold. Now for some basic math, something else that seems to be lacking in our classrooms these days: Five thousand planes, give or take a few, are in flight over the United States at any given moment. In a single day, more than 87,000 are leaving contrails all over those friendly skies. On average, 64 million jet planes take off and land somewhere in the States, leaving behind contrails. Divide six cirrus clouds the size of Massachusetts into 64 million contrails, and that’s a lot of clouds. All this cloud cover is bouncing the sun’s energy back into space, keeping our planet cool in what’s been called ‘global dimming,’ which should be a good thing, right? Um, not really. Now we need some chemistry… yeah, yeah, I know. They don’t teach much of that in schools anymore, either. But let’s give it a shot, anyway. What exactly are contrails? Contrails and clouds are similar, made up of condensed water vapor freezing around small particles. Clouds form from ice crystals and other natural particles, like dust blown into the atmosphere by wind. Ice crystals melt into water, while dust, being generally inert, falls back to earth where it came from. Contrails, on the other hand, form around aircraft exhaust, including carbon dioxide, nitrogen oxides, carbon monoxides, and hydrocarbons such as methane, sulfates, soot and metal particles. The clouds formed by these exhaust particulates has another difference to ordinary clouds; ice crystals and natural dust is larger than hydrocarbon particulates, which form much smaller water droplets. Smaller water droplets reflect back more sunlight, but don’t grow heavy enough to precipitate as rain. Pollution-derived clouds actually decrease rain, adding to drought conditions. Now add this in to what is known as the Asian Brown Cloud, a thick layer of smog covering a huge area of southern Asia and the Indian Ocean formed by combustion pollution, wood fires, garbage fires, burning fossil fuels in cars, industrial factory emissions, the usual culprits. In the monsoon months, rain washes this massive toxic cloud out of the air – and into the soil. But while this lethal crap is floating around in the atmosphere and causing droughts, floods, and killing two million people a year, it also is contributing to ‘global dimming’, masking its own impact on atmospheric warming. And before anyone gets too smug that the so-called ‘Asian’ Brown Cloud is all India and China’s fault and therefore their problem, it’s not unique to Asia; hotspots popping up in Europe, South Africa, South America, and North America – in other words, everywhere. In September of 2001, we got our first real glimpse of what happens if we aren’t pumping vast quantities of particulate crap into the air alongside all the carbon dioxide waste. Current climate change forecasts only take into consideration CO2 emissions, which predict a maximum warming of 5 degrees by the end of the century, plenty of time to ‘do something’, everyone can relax, sit back, wait for scientists and politicians to come up with the answers all in the nick of time, don’t worry, be happy! But climate change forecasts haven’t been factoring in global dimming. We don’t have a hundred years to come up with a solution – we’ve got about twenty to apply those brakes before it’s too late. Cooling particle pollution is already dropping off while the CO2 warming pollution is continuing to rise, which means a doubled accelerated warming – reducing cooling and increased heating at the same time. With the dual effect of global warming/global dimming, temperatures could rise twice as fast as previously thought, global warming exceeding two degrees by around 2030, at which point the Greenland ice sheet would melt, causing irreversible damage. Once the Greenland ice cap begins to melt, nothing will stop it. After Greenland, the world’s tropical rain forests will start to die off in the heat. By 2040, with only a four degree rise in global temperature, the Amazon Basin rain forest becomes unsustainable, subjected to devastating fires (think – Australia right now), all of South America turns into one vast savannah and ultimately desert. As rain forests die and burn, those fires will release even more CO2 into the atmosphere, driving global warming still further and faster. In just a century, rather than five degrees hotter, the world could easily be twice that, which would be a warming more rapid than any other at any time ever in Earth’s history, bar none. Most European and northern plant species will not survive in a North African climate. But while a ten-degree warming in Europe in a hundred years is merely catastrophic, a ten-degree warming in an already hot country makes it completely uninhabitable. Life on earth begins to starve and die, which includes us.

And now for the coup de grace at the end of this chain of effect: a ten degree warming will lead to the release of a vast natural store of greenhouse gas bigger than all the oil and coal reserves of the planet. Methane hydrates store ten thousand billion tons of methane, a greenhouse gas eight times stronger than carbon dioxide, at the bottom of the ocean in a kind of frozen form, known to be destabilized by warming. Once these gasses start to be released, no matter what was done at that point to curb emissions, it would be too late. Ten thousand billion tons of methane, which would have twenty-five times the impact on temperature than a carbon dioxide emission of the same mass over the following 100 years, would be released into the atmosphere, the Earth’s climate heading towards temperatures unseen in four billion years, with no way to stop it. All life on earth would become extinct. It’s the end of the world. And we’re only talking two hundred years, tops. But, yeah, those deniers are completely correct about one thing – the earth has been here before. Back when the only life capable of surviving in such an atmosphere and climate was precursors of bacteria. Totally natural, ya betcha. If we’re really lucky, the earth will recover on its own, just like it did the first time around… in another four billion years.

Welcome to Venus, folks…

Postscript: Climate change, global warming, whatever the hell you want to call it exists. There are basically no scientists denying climate change anymore. I am not talking about the guy who used to be a weatherman in a white coat who was hired by some conglomerate or other to spew out whatever they told him to spew. Saying your not a scientist, so you don’t know is not an excuse! GOP deniers that say they have seen no science to back it up are, for lack of a better word, liars. So vote the ticket just like you were told to, hell you will probably die before the crap hits the proverbial fan, but your kin might wish you had done something about it as they starve to death in a world gone mad!

I am gleaning this information from multiple sources. However most of what you will see in the this first section was suggested to me by an article in the Rolling Stone magazine entitled “Inside the Koch Brothers Toxic Empire” by Tim Dickinson.

Each Koch brother is worth approximately 40 billion. Koch-affiliated organizations raised some $400 million during the 2012 election, and aim to spend another $290 million to elect Republicans in this year’s midterms. So far in this cycle alone, Koch-backed entities have bought 44,000 political ads to boost Republican efforts to take back the Senate. Here are some examples of why it is so important to them to keep the GOP in power.

Koch is now a key player in the fracking boom that’s pushing the United States past Saudi Arabia as the world’s top oil producer, even as it’s endangering America’s groundwater. In 2012, a Koch subsidiary opened a pipeline capable of carrying 250,000 barrels a day of fracked crude from South Texas to Corpus Christi, where the company owns a refinery complex, and it has announced plans to further expand its Texas pipeline operations. In a recent acquisition, Koch bought Frac-Chem, a top provider of hydraulic fracturing chemicals to drillers. Thanks to the Bush administration’s anti-regulatory­ agenda – which Koch Industries helped craft – Frac-Chem’s chemical cocktails, injected deep under the nation’s aquifers, are almost entirely exempt from the Safe Drinking Water Act. And why would they bother, if, as they claim, there is nothing to worry about! According to them, fire coming out of faucets in the areas of tracking is coincidental and nothing to do with them. Livestock has been found dead, fish in ponds floating lifeless, but it has nothing to do with fracking! So then why did they spend so much money and time to exempt themselves from the Safe Drinking Water Act. Legislation that was put in place to protect us from this exact type of activity.

Here is another example, the Koch brothers own the richest – but also the dirtiest and most carbon-polluting – oil deposits in North America: the tar sands of Alberta. The company’s Pine Bend refinery, near St. Paul, Minnesota, processes nearly a quarter of the Canadian bitumen exported to the United States – which, in turn, has created for Koch Industries a lucrative sideline in petcoke exports. Denser, dirtier and cheaper than coal, petcoke is the dregs of tar-sands refining. U.S. coal plants are largely forbidden from burning petcoke, but it can be profitably shipped to countries with lax pollution laws like Mexico and China. One of the firm’s subsidiaries, Koch Carbon, is expanding its Chicago terminal operations to receive up to 11 million tons of petcoke for global export. So it is illegal for use in the USA because we don’t want to contribute to the worlds pollution any more than we have to, but all right to sell it to the rest of the world out of an American port? That, my friends, is the perfect example of the definition of “oxymoron”! I have been accused of defending President Obama too much of the time. Of course most of my readers would prefer I never did! So what! I only did that when people started up with the birth nonsense, what color suit he wore, doctored pics depicting him and wife in every derogatory way possible. So sue me for wanting better healthcare and my social security I paid in since I was thirteen. So here is one of the things I do not like. President Obama is on a big anti pollution and climate change crusade. However he lets people who can buy votes sell pollution for profit and lets them use our infrastructure to do it! You have to set your boots down on one side of the barb wire or the other and dig in your heels. Can’t blame Obama for everything, well the same goes for the GOP. Of course their slice of blame pie is a really big sloppy piece!

Charles Koch, the 78-year-old CEO and chairman of the board of Koch Industries presents himself as a man of moral clarity and high integrity. “The role of business is to produce products and services in a way that makes people’s lives better,” he said recently. “It cannot do so if it is injuring people and harming the environment in the process.” I’ll bet after he repeated that bullshit three or four times, he actually believed it. Another example if you will. A company called Universal Oil Products invented a way to crack the heavy crude oil into the usable fuels and chemicals for plastic, etc. It made the process at the refinery faster and far cheaper. Fred Koch teamed up with a former engineer from Universal and copied their cracking engineering almost exactly, with only one or two small differences, then set out to under sell them. Universal eventually took them to court for intellectual piracy and tied up the operation. So undaunted, Fred Koch just went to Stalin who was financing his communistic agenda and the cold war with their oil fields. Their oil, it turned out, was even harder to refine than American oil. So Fred supplied Stalin and the USSR with all the cracking expertise and equipment the country needed to crank up its petroleum industry and helped to directly finance our biggest and most dangerous enemy! They have a word for that, and I don’t need to tell you what that word is. But money shoved in the right pocket allows you to pretty much do whatever you want, even collaborate with the enemy.

So one last thing. Almost all the ads you see denying climate change come out of the coffers of the Koch brothers. This fact alone should tell you two things right away. First, they are one of the top three polluters in North America so it behooves them to deny that man is effecting any climate change. And two, you don’t spend millions upon untold millions to convince someone of something that does not exist. The summit to discuss climate change at the United Nations recently was one of the highest in attendence ever. The protest event outside demanding something be done about climate change was one of the largest in history. Not only that, the same day, world wide, 2,646 other events took place in 162 countries. Cleaning up the environment cost money. The Koch brothers can’t have that even though currently they take in 115 billion in annual revenue and want to double that in the next ten years. We need to get them and their ilk out of politics. Well they should get to vote, scream and yell like the rest of us, but their money should be unwelcome in politics. Every politician for a specific office should have the exact same amount of money available to them to run for office. Any ads must come from that fund, not the Koch brothers deep pockets.

Forget that big business hires lobbyists to convince us there is no such thing as global warming. Forget that 97% of scientists in the field agree that there is. Forget that if there really weren’t any global warming no one would be spending untold millions to convince us otherwise because the facts would be self-evident. That circumstance alone chaps my hide! Because global warming is just that, self-evident, all you have to do is pull your head out of the sand (or any other place it might have been stuck) and look out at the world.

Water temp in the oceans is up. The earth itself is heating up all around the globe. NASA has been photographing both poles from space for quite some time now, and they show that ice sheets and glaciers are melting at an increasing rate. Now one argument is that this is a natural phenomenon and is not aggravated by what man does or does not do. I myself do not deny that there could be natural cycles that would give us at least some of our symptoms. However, these would occur because of fluctuations in the suns temperature that it is sharing with our planet. We now have the capability to measure how hot the sun is and we have been monitoring it for decades. The temp is staying constant, so it is not the problem. Plus the warming effect would take place during daylight; you know when the sun is actually shining on a portion of the planet!

But satellites show that the earth warms up more at night and winter than in daylight or summer, which supports the supposition that it is being caused by an excess of Co2, not the sun.

What is the best Co2 scrubber we have available for the planet? I think they are called plants, which uses up Co2 in photosynthesis and produces oxygen, which some of us actually need to live. (Well maybe not politicians, I think maybe they are part of an alien plot to just kill us off without a shot being fired.) So where does most photosynthesis take place, why in the ocean by plankton. As a matter of fact if we lose this resource we all die. Not an exaggeration, we all die! So lets keep dumping our sewers into it and making huge trash islands the size of Texas out in the Pacific. What is the next best resource, well any growing plant, but in enough concentration to really make a difference, well that would be a rain forest. So lets keep cutting them down at a hundred plus acres a day.

So let me see, we pump billions of metric tons of pollutants into the atmosphere regularly, then we do our best to kill off the two most important resources to combat the harm we are doing, but hey, man is not responsible. Bull, this world is our house, and we my friends, are the damn termites.

Scientists have been warning us that we could cause global warming since the early days of the industrial revolution. As a matter of fact, from what I can tell, scientist did not have differing opinions on this until science started to be funded by industry, then it started to change its mind, who would have thought! If you look closely, only scientists whose main focus is somewhere else but in the study of greenhouse and global warming have changed their minds. If you look even closer, you will notice a pattern of whom they work for, or who funds them, and that pattern is telling.

People also confuse global warming and climate change. You get a cold snap, or way more rain or snow than usual, and people immediately claim this proves there is no such thing as global warming. But it does if you spent your time with me in Mr. Pratt’s class doing something other than hitting on girls and skating by. A few college classes here and there helped, but Mr. Pratt was by far my best teacher. Only people in Council who went to school with me would know who or what I am talking about. We learned a lot of science, way beyond what other schools were doing then or now. I personally took six science classes in four years. Some invented by the same Mr. Pratt so we could continue to learn. The point being is that global warming changes weather patterns. One of the most common to us in the U.S. is the change in atmospheric winds that used to keep the cold air of the arctic in the arctic, or at least mostly contained to Canada and bordering northern states. But the increase in global warming has changed how far south these air currents are now allowed to travel. This causes a huge change in weather, which will be colder and more severe. Same thing for seasonal storms that generate over oceans, global warming makes the interaction of air and water more dramatic, increasing the ferocity of storms, hurricanes, or typhoons, depending on your location. Again, changing climate attitudes, and never for the better!

Now we should talk about the tipping point. Once we get too a certain saturation of Co2 there is no turning back. A new report on permafrost slowly thawing in the Arctic creating methane and carbon dioxide emissions highlights an approaching dangerous climate tipping point. There is a huge amount of organic matter frozen in permafrost, estimated to contain 1,700 gigatonnes of carbon, twice the amount of carbon currently in the atmosphere. And it is starting to melt. With no way to stop it except indirectly through us reducing the rate of global warming by reducing our own emissions. That means drastically and now! We both know that will never happen. You need to know that most people do not care, as long as they get all they can and the payback will happen after they die, then all is good! But you’re grandkids of our next generation may be living, or dying, in a world no longer fit for humans.

In order for us to turn the tide, we have to have a healthy ocean. We need way more green plants thriving. We will have to not only stop stripping the planet of rain forests, but also encourage growth. And we will have to quit pumping Co2 into the atmosphere. Natural or not, it can kill us off. We are smart enough to change this trend; we just have to be wise enough to do it. They already have a way to make fuel out of seawater. Not in a major way yet, but if it was a priority, it would soon be a way for sea faring vessels to be totally free of harmful emissions. And it also makes oxygen as a by-product. Plus the ocean regenerates these chemicals you take out naturally, so it is an inexhaustible resource. http://www.outsideonline.com/news-from-the-field/Navy-Makes-Fuel-From-Seawater.html There are lots of links I found, so I just picked one, but easy to find.

But for any of this to be done in time, or done at all, first you have to recognize the problem. We have the technology at our fingertips. Enough energy from the sun hits the planet in an hour’s time to run all of todays industry for a year. We just need to convince ourselves to harness it. The wind is always blowing somewhere, especially over the ocean. You can find links to wind generators in the ocean and not taking up an acre of useable land. In even one of the great deserts of the world, using today’s solar tech, we could power every industry in the world. So it is all entirely possible. Problem is, the people making themselves rich on fossil fuels are not about to let that happen as long as the money keeps pouring in. So you get the myth that it is not happening, or at the very least nothing we need to do about it. They are wrong, and I am telling you they know they are wrong they just don’t care. So you and I had better start!

I wrote this while my computer was down; some animal ate my cable off the side of the house last night. But if you have the ability to watch Cosmos: A Space Time Odyssey, I think it is the second to the last one. The episode is called; The World Set Free that deals with global warming. The whole series is well worth watching. Carl Sagan originally did this Cosmos series back when I was a teenager. It was great then and great now!