FULL. TEAM. EFFORT. pic.twitter.com/pUjTJrUtCx— Pittsburgh Penguins (@penguins) April 16, 2021
Saturday, April 17, 2021
Friday, April 16, 2021
Wednesday, April 14, 2021
Tuesday, April 13, 2021
Saturday, April 10, 2021
Friday, April 09, 2021
I forget, did republicans tell @GoyaFoods to stay out of politics??— Irishrygirl (@irishrygirl) April 7, 2021
Background: "Why Republicans want corporations to end all criticism of their war on voting rights," Robert Schlesinger, NBC News, 4/7/21.
Monday, April 05, 2021
A comment from a Canadian on Saturday's column in the NY Times by Nicholas Kristoff, "How Do We Stop the Parade of Gun Deaths?"
All these Americans must die so the gun fetishists can have their 20 guns each and their assault weapons and pretend to be navy seals. So the gun industry can keep their profits rolling selling guns and ammunition. (Almost 40 M guns were sold in America last year.) Because a minority of citizens in the US can control what the country does -- the Democrats in the US Senate represent 41,549,808 more people than do the Republicans, even though the seats are split 50-50. "Republican Senators Haven’t Represented a Majority of Voters Since 1996." Journalist and columnist Eric Black writes
Few, if any, other “democracies” have anything this undemocratic built into their systems.... the arguably least democratic feature of the Constitution, is the only thing in the whole document that can never be amended.
Friday, April 02, 2021
Ed Berry, a PhD in physics from before the Standard Model, who has now abandoned everything he every learned to become an idiotic climate denier, continues to publish the worst in global warming bullshit, like this piece of moronic juvenility from someone named Tom V. Segalstad:
There is then indeed a paradox that CO2, "The Gas of Life", is now being condemned as the evil "polluting" gas, a gas which will be a threat to people's living on Earth, through a postulated "Global Warming".
This is too stupid to spend any time on, and not because of its many grammatical mistakes.
Instead I want to recount a recent private email correspondence I had with Dr Berry about a month and a half ago, when the illustrious climate-denying Mr Chuck Wiese BS hyperventilated on the radio show of Lars Larson, who is terrified to have any other opinion on his show except the anti-science one, about how James Hansen has, essentially, always been full of shit. This coming from a man, Wiese, who has a mere bachelor's degree in meteorology, has never done or published any research in his life, claims that CO2 doesn't cause global warming, but admits that the world is warming but he doesn't know why, but it's definitely not CO2. Yet he has the nerve to denigrate James Hansen.
Instead he brought up the illustrious work of Dr Ed Berry, who, Wiese says, has proven that only 18 ppm of atmospheric CO2 is due to humans.
Not that Berry has ever published such a thing. He hasn't. He's afraid to submit his work to any real journal, or, if he has, is afraid to say when it's been rejected. No doubt it will soon be published by the Zambian Proceedings of the Colonial Council of the University Chemical Pact, and Berry will claim a clear and overwhelming victory.
I asked Berry how, if only 18 ppm of man's emissions since the start of the industrial revolution has gone into the atmosphere, where has the rest of these emissions gone? He replied something about the number of layers in the IPCC models, as if the IPCC even made climate or carbon models, which they don't. Which was a nonanswer anyway. I asked him again, and there was silence. Indeed, I think it has never even occurred to him to ask this question, let alone try to answer it. Nor has the illustrious Mr Chuck Wiese B.S.
And how fucking stupid is that? These people don't even know how to do the simplest science. Yet Lars Larson is putting them on the radio before something like 1-4 M people (Lars once told me; I think it's 1 M for his Oregon-Washington show and 4 M for his national show), misleading every single one of them. And he doesn't seem the least bit concerned about it. Larson claims he's an ex-journalist who uses journalistic methods on his show, but that's a complete joke. He's just a Trump toady willing to lie if he thinks it advances his ideology one small step. And bald-faced liars like him and Wiese and Berry are ruining America. Does anyone there even care???
Monday, March 29, 2021
I loved Kim Stanley Robinson's The Ministry of the Future and recommend it to anyone who is interested in the subject of climate change.
I mean that broadly -- anyone interested in and concerned about climate change and how the world will be affected by it, is going to deal with it and how it will address it. So not just sci fi readers, or climate fiction readers, or KSR fans -- everyone. Robinson is full of ideas about what the future might bring, and he's worth listening to. If I were teaching a class on how we should deal with climate change, I might well assign this book to my students, it's that thought provoking.
The book covers the period from about 2020 to 2050, when the shit of climate change really hits the fan. I'm not going to cover the book in detail -- it's too large. The "Ministry of the Future" is (and this is clever) a UN-formed agency tasked with representing the interests of those not yet born. This happens in the wake of a serious climate catastrophe that takes place in the beginning of the book that I won't reveal here, but which looms over everything that happens after, that makes some (at least) treat the issue as a war.
I think this is perhaps my biggest takeaway from the book. We know -- we know -- what the future will be if we continue on our current emissions pathways. So do politicians. So do oil executives, coal executives, gas executives, business executives, the wealthy of all stripes. They know, these few thousands of people, or tens of thousands on top. But they are actively choosing to exploit climate changing assets for the sake of their own wealth -- actions that will change the climate for untold billions, harm untold billions, alter the lives of untold billions for the unforeseeable future.
Why is this allowed?
In the book, some people decide that it will no longer be allowed, by any means necessary. These people will no longer be allowed to gain obnoxious wealth at the expense of billions now and tens of billions, if not hundreds, of the future. So they, the climate criminals, begin to covertly be eliminated, in their homes, their businesses, their private planes are brought down, their mountain retreats are flushed. Entire units of trained assassins in "black" groups make this their priority until the message gets through. It's not ever clear who is training these black groups, or who sponsors them, if anyone does. Is it the Ministry of the Future? Not officially. No one knows, not even those at the top. Everyone prefers it that way, and looks the other way. Because the tactic works.
Is it too much?
The other most interesting idea in the book is carbon quantitative easing. Basically, the Ministry of the Future convinces the major central banks of the world -- the US, Europe and China -- to give a "carbon coin" to anyone who sequesters a metric ton of carbon. (One small mistake in the book is that Robinson often confuses a ton of carbon with a ton of CO2.) How do they do this? They simply create the carbon coin out of nothing. It exists on a market and can be exchanged at any bank for any currency. It is traded on markets and its value fluctuates like any currency. How do the central banks afford to do this? By creating money in their computers! That's what quantitative easing is. That's what they did in the 2009 financial crisis. That's what central banks do all the time. They create money in their computers and send it to banks to loan. Look at the M2 money supply. It isn't the whole story because money is also created that never makes it into circulation, such as excess reserves. By no means do I pretend to understand all this, but I'm glad those in charge do. I keep trying to understand it but haven't found the right book yet. KSR more or less posits that the carbon QE doesn't lead to inflation, without putting forth a real argument. Or any argument. But then, QE or QE2 after 2009 didn't lead to inflation either, after many people predicted it. This is Paul Krugman's hobby horse, which he loves to ride, while spitting in the face of the inflationists, who, he points out over and over again, were wrong.
I won't give away the ending of the book, or say much more. I also need a new keyboard (having typed most of this several days ago), so can't go any further now. I highly recommend the book.
Wednesday, March 24, 2021
"At last week’s Alaska meeting between America’s and China’s top diplomats, Chinese officials made it quite clear that they no longer fear our criticism, because they don’t respect us as they once did, and they don’t think the rest of the world does, either. Or as Yang Jiechi, China’s top foreign affairs policymaker, baldly told his U.S. counterparts: “The United States does not have the qualification...to speak to China from a position of strength.”
"Surprised? What did you think, that the Chinese didn’t notice that our last president inspired his followers to ransack our Capitol, that a majority of his party did not recognize the results of our democratic election, that a member of our Congress believes that Jewish-run space lasers cause forest fires, that left-wing anarchists were allowed to take over a section of downtown Portland, creating havoc for months, that during the pandemic the U.S. printed money to help its consumers keep spending — much of it on Chinese-made goods — while China printed money to invest in even more infrastructure, and that gun violence in America is out control?"
-- Thomas Friedman, "China Doesn’t Respect Us Anymore — for Good Reason," New York Times, 3/23/21