12/7/17 09:58
halialkers: A sister of battle from Warhammer 40K in full armor striding along (Xedevcekar)
[personal profile] halialkers
Article the 1st: The USA and Russia in the G20 and climate change  )Article the second from 2004 pointing out the ideas of article the first are hardly new )The reality that the Russia doing all this should be a lethal joke at best but has basically shown old model geopolitics works just fine, thank you )

If nothing else all this shows that the Fukuyama Thesis is not only dead but that the corpse of same has decayed into ashes like a staked vampire. ISIS has started the crumbling of the Westphalian concept of the state whether or not it collapses this year or in the next three. Its survival matters less than it legitimizing the non-Westphalian state by routing 30,000 Iraqi soldiers with 800 fighters at the Battle of Mosul.

And together with that, the Russians have overthrown the notions of collective security and re-established rules that powers other than the USA can unilaterally act according to 19th Century Great Power logic again. History is not dead, it just took a break while the USA grasped an illusion of power, and now the wheel of history is in motion again as a ravenous juggernaut seeking whom it can crush as the world's climate ratchets upward with precious little as a viable means to really stop or slow it down in a way that matters. 

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Trump's insane management of American politics is simply a manifestation of where America's mindset has been for decades. Our way or the highway. Well, America, we're all on that highway now, and you're welcome to wander aimlessly on the backroads for the next few decades.

Yeah... this is just Trump's personal vendetta to wipe out everything the Obama administration did. Still, it's good to see some states and cities ignoring the moron and continuing the effort on their own. And good that all other countries are seeing that not all Americans are following his idiotic, selfish decisions:

Read more... )
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This coupled with the stupidity of some of the world leaders that refuse to understand climate change is a real and rather immediate threat, means we're pretty screwed. Like Carlin used to say, the planet is gonna be just fine, but we, the humans, are screwed.

The Great Barrier Reef Can No Longer Be Saved by Current Efforts, Scientists Warn

Earth is like a dog who's having a particularly severe infestation of fleas. He'll shake us off eventually, and move on.

And no, this has nothing to do with liberalism or conservatism or any other such petty bullshit.
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Another gloriously and confusing week of incoherent shambling, as Lord Dampnut faced his second major loss in his proposed programme, the return of old King Coal, utterly bizarre developments in the wiretapping claims, and a dash of nepotism. Is it any wonder that Lord Dampnut now has the worst opinion poll ratings this early in the presidency since .. well, since they started?

As hinted in last week's episode, Lord Dampnut - famous for his negotiating skills and with a clear party majority - headed towards disaster on his repeal of Affordable Health Care, and at the very last available moment decided that would not be taken to Congress to be voted on. Lord Dampnut took the opportunity to blame not only his party for the failure, but also Democrats who, in an act of what must have been a complete surprise to him, did not vote to dismantle the Affordable Health Care Act. Republican Representative Dana Rohrabacher made the surprising claim that if the bill went down Lord Dampnut would be emasculated. Apparently the queue to carry out the operation is quite long.

As any big corporation knows, it's good to have friends in high places, and there's none higher than Lord Dampnut. The week witnessed an Executive Order which declared "an end to the war on coal". Lord Dampnut, of course, is firm in his belief that global warming is a hoax, despite overwhelming evidence to the contrary (which must be deleted). The atmosphere, meanwhile, doesn't care what he thinks.

The wiretapping claims went seriously strange this week with Devin Nunes, chair of the United States House Permanent Select Committee on Intelligence, having to backtrack on claims from the previous week when he announced at a press conference (without consulting the very committee he chairs) that some members of the transitional administration had been under surveillance by the NSA. It then became clear that was was information received from the White House, and not by intelligence sources, but by White House staff, which really puts his supposed independence in the two inquiries under question.

Speaking of White House staff, guess who has a job? Daddy's little girl, that's who. She'll join her husband Jared Kushner, who is already a senior adviser to Lord Dampnut. Although Jared apparently has been a little naughty in disclosing how often he's met with the Ruskies. Still, with Devin Nunes in charge of that committee, what could possibly go wrong?
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Thermodynamics at play. If you increase energy in a relatively stable system, it destabilizes, at least until another equilibrium state is reached. And the Earth climate system has been shown to be very sensitive to changes, so we are likely in for a wild ride:

Atlantic Ocean circulation could collapse with climate change influence, study says

"Current models assume Atlantic Ocean in stable condition, but new study suggests this might not be so".

This has been falling on deaf ears for years, and with Trump in office soon, it's even less likely that it'd be heeded.

But not to worry! I'm sure in about 250,000 years all will be back to normal. Then we can get on with that beautiful wall.

Someone please tell me how exactly are Republinuts working for the well-being of their own grandchildren, and how would anyone really convince them that the "rewards" their corporate donors give them are not as important as the mid- to long-term economic (and thus, social and political) implications of their inaction? Oh sorry, that was a rhetorical question.
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"You know, sometimes I think Trump is trolling us, people," "Daily Show" host Trevor Noah said last week. "It's like the ultimate troll! Because you realize, every single person he's picked for his cabinet wants to destroy the thing that they've been put in charge of."
-- From a recent review of Trump's climate-related appointments.

And they do have a point. The short-list includes:

- An EPA head who's suing the EPA.
- A Secretary of State from ExxonMobil.
- An Energy secretary who's said he would eliminate the Department of Energy.

Read more... )
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Or why the Copenhagen Agreements and their like keep being unworkable.

To start with, yes, the conduct of the likes of the USA and Canada in either not at all signing agreements and proceeding to ignore them shamelessly or signing them and then ignoring them anyhow is entirely deplorable. Those points are perfectly valid and there's nothing to argue with. This is not that discussion, it's a wholly different one.

cut for font difference )

When the leader of India critiques the West for promises to help with developing green technologies in poor countries that to be perfectly blunt have enough problems with the most basic element of the state (the monopoly on force (i.e. they're permanently in civil wars and exist in some parts of their territory in name only)) and the West fails to deliver, and of course fails to follow through with its own roles in such cases, I do believe that the Indian leaders are right to say "Whoa, wait, what?"

Another article related to the same topic is this one:

cut again for font difference )

So again, the West demands carbon be cut, but it can afford, in theory (in practice as noted behavior does tend to differ slightly) to work around things. Poorer countries with less to spend and not uncommonly endemic insurgencies and civil wars have less money to spend on these issues and the issue of dubious sovereignty in a world where the USA and now China are building bases all over the place to provide control for their discretion.

One last article:

cut once more for font difference )

I believe all of this raises a good and rather cogent point to solving the climate change issue in the long term. The interests of rich and poor countries aren't the same, and human history is not encouraging for the belief that people put aside divergent issues in pursuit of a common good that's nebulous and supposed to really hit in a century or so. Even when the oceans are becoming more acidic and literally swallowing islands, it still seems to remote to really do anything about the climate part. Rich countries destroying their own natural ecosystems and expecting poor countries to uphold standards they refuse to apply to themselves? Not so much. Same with rich countries presuming that poor countries can actually afford the expense of developing technology when shacked with multiple issues the rich countries do not face.

Stuff like this, frankly, makes me pessimistic that 2100 will be anything but the kind of Mad Max-style disaster that'll happen if the science is right. How can people really solve issues if the idea of solutions involves maintaining a dubious status quo? What ways are there around this Catch-22?

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We could hardly call this evidence of an impending apocalypse, but the meteorological chaos from the recent weeks of 2015 that was otherwise already very rich of climate anomalies, is quite telling. The North Pole had temperatures well over zero Celsius, and in the middle of the polar winter, the snow was melting in regions where one should expect temperatures around -40'C. What's more, the Canadian and Siberian Far North, the tundra and the permafrost soil, are now melting at an alarming speed (although this is still only valid for the top layers), and nearing a tipping point that could unleash vast quantities of additional carbon into the atmosphere. And in the moderate latitudes, fruit trees were blooming around Christmas. One can't help cringing at these anomalies. Or can they? Some are actually welcoming them. Such nice weather in January! That must be great. Except for the times when a freak storm comes, disrupting entire economies, or a polar vortex, or when a deluge becomes the new norm, or when months of drought deprive vast territories of water.

Read more... )
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Paris climate goals mean emissions need to drop below zero

In reality, the Paris deal is of no importance at all, aside from pure symbolism.

Everyone got together and agreed that something needs to be done. No actual answers, just vague goals to be met by the next couple of generations, and no means of enforcing any sort of punishment on any nation that decides to not comply with anything implied, dreamed, envisioned or expected.

What we really have is something akin to the New Orleans Hurricane Plan before Katrina hit in 2005 - a plan to come up with an actionable plan sometime in the future.

So what's the solution, you may ask. At least the first few steps? Well, just what the article said - emissions have to be cut to zero, or it's just political/economic wrangling. Growth has to effectively be stopped until 100% renewable energy sources put in the place of fossil fuels. It will be brutal, but it's all that will actually work.

Everything else is posturing and profiteering.

Speaking of profits, if I had The Answer, I could be very rich! ;)
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When an event is dubbed one of our "last chances" for averting dangerous climate change, it naturally creates a lot of expectations. Especially after the failure of Copenhagen'09. Some have hastened to call the Paris climate summit pointless even before it has begun. Meanwhile, US president Obama has urged for reaching an agreement, thus additionally raising the stakes. In fact, this conference is just a step along a very long road. Its purpose is to merely set some basic directions for what's to come in the future - but of course all will depend on the commitment and dedication of all participant countries.

The good thing is, the positive effect is already visible: the countries are working together on a solution for cutting carbon emissions, and this should send a strong signal to the politicians and business circles. And secondly, this event has put the debate on climate change into the spotlight, and it's gaining momentum. So, Paris'15 is becoming a symbol of a process that's already been underway for a while.

Read more... )
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AP FACT CHECK: On climate science, most GOP candidates fail

"When it comes to climate science, two of the three Democratic presidential candidates are 'A' students, while most of the Republican contenders are flunking, according to a panel of scientists who reviewed candidates' comments."

..."In point of fact anyone that scored less than a "C" (i.e. below 70) exhibited "ignorance would be dangerous in a doorman, let alone a president.""

What a shock, eh? )
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Kiribati Climate Change Relocation Refugee Crisis? Sinking Low-Lying Island Nations In Pacific, Indian Oceans Seeking Solutions Before It's Too Late

And this is one of several ocean nations (Tuvalu being the latest such example) which are now threatened by rising sea levels, and have had to consider relocation options.

Indeed, there are already millions of climate change and environmental refugees: both internally in a lot of countries like India, Pakistan, Bangladesh and Nigeria, and across borders. Plus the conflicts that all this brings. We all know that the Syrian mess was partly triggered by an exceptional 5 year drought; that the Arab Spring was additionally flamed by soaring food prices due to the droughts; we know that hundreds of thousands left New Orleans after Katrina, and a lot of them never came back.

We know that the migration to the US borders from the south partly has to do with gripping droughts in Central America. We know that a lot of refugees trying to reach Europe are from areas where life has become too unbearable because of water depletion, deforestation, overpopulation etc.

Let's face it. The process has already started. And the flood of people wanting to escape their misery will be only increasing ever more rapidly. And here's the bad news. Ultimately, they will be facing increasing problems with getting allowed into Europe, the US and other places around the world. And the great dehumanization, and more excuses and pretexts for the destruction of human rights and ending people's dignity will be triggered by all that.

Whoever thought these things are none of their concern because they were happening thousands of miles away, obviously hadn't thought this through. And we've all had it coming.
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To those conservatives, both Catholic and protestant, who get really worked up when their rigid boundaries are moved a fraction of an inch to the left or the right, consider just how "radical" the Pope has really been. All these "left-wing" organizations and individuals endorse action on climate change:

- The US Department of Defense.
- Every science academy and scientific professional society in the world (197 of them).
- All major universities.
- Practically all peer-reviewed research papers.
- 97% of climate scientists actively engaged in research.
- Republicans George P Shultz, Hank Paulson, Lindsey Graham, Bob Inglis (President of Energy and Enterprise Org), Eli Lehrer (President of Free Enterprise R Street Org), Jerry Taylor (President of the Niskanen Institute)...
- Steve LaTourette, Mike Castle, Lisa Murkowski, Susan Collins, Olympia Snow, Sherwood Boehlert, Chris Collins, Mike Kirk, Bob Corker, Mike Bloomberg...
- According to a Yale Study, 52% of Republicans nationwide.
- CitizensClimateLobby.Org.
- The US Episcopal Church.
- The Catholic Church (obviously).
- Katharine Hayhoe (evangelical Christian and climate scientist).
- Republicen.Org.
- The US administration.
- Nearly all world leaders.

And to the uncommitted 48% of Republicans: What say you? Want to remain at the wrong side of history on yet another important issue? The Pope is Catholic, therefore he's irrelevant, HUH? Is that it?
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The temperatures are reaching 45 Celsius in New Delhi, and the record heat is claiming thousands of lives in India and Pakistan. The drought in Phnom Penh is destroying the crops of the world's poorest farmers, and in Thailand and California there is water rationing. What these events have in common, according to the climatologists, is that they are now being caused by the cyclical occurrence of the El Nino.

The effects of climate change on human life and the economy has occupied the minds of both scientists and economists, but little research has been done on this particular cyclical phenomenon. El Nino is an overal lchange of the temperature o the surface waters in the equatorial and tropical areas of the Central and Eastern Pacific Ocean well over the usual levels. This happens for a few months roughly once in five years, in the general case the average temperature rising by more than a few tenths of a degree.

Read more... )
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...But could it be too little, too late?

Climate change: Obama to unveil Clean Power Plan
"US President Barack Obama is due to unveil what he called "the biggest, most important step we have ever taken" in tackling climate change."

Having in mind that a recent paper by one of the world's most reputed climate scientists, James Hansen, warns of a 3+ meter sea level rise in half a century (granted, still not peer-reviewed), Obama may or may not have been spot on when he said that "...climate change is not a problem for another generation, not any more".

Read more... )
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'Mini ice age' coming in next fifteen years, new model of the Sun's cycle shows

"We are now able to predict solar cycles with far greater accuracy than ever before thanks to a new model which shows irregularities in the sun’s 11-year heartbeat. The model shows that solar activity will fall by 60 per cent between 2030 and 2040 causing a "mini ice age". The conditions predicted have not been experienced since the last "mini ice age" which lasted from 1645 to 1715, called the Maunder Minimum."

Interesting. A lot has been written about the turbulent times of the 17th century, and there's been the argument that it was all largely due to climate change. During that time, Europe and North America had some very harsh winters, according to the scientific theory, caused by an abnormal lack of sunspots.

Read more... )
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Denmark has been the latest country to press claims over chunks of the Arctic. Last December, the Danish foreign minister Martin Lindegaard issued the respective letter to the UN, stating Denmark's plans to assert their position at the international Arctic stage.

Indeed, that region has become increasingly accessible in recent times, due to the melting ice. So, an increasing number of countries are presently scrambling to re-define the rules of transportation and access to the Artcic Ocean. And of course to take a piece of whatever resources lie beneath the ocean floor for themselves.

Read more... )
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FL DEP Employee Suspended and Forced to Obtain Medical Release for Mentioning Climate Change

So much with the sacred Freeeedoooom of Speech, eh?

First off, here's a stupid question. So if a state employee in FL replies to an email containing the phrase "climate change", do they have to edit the reply text or what? Does the IT head have to edit the words in their email archive? Someone explain this to me please, for I am confus'd.

As for King Scott the Great, I say great job, King Scott! I'm sure he must merely be practicing how he would run the rest of the country if he becomes king, oh wait I mean POTUS... Mind you, these are the same right-wingers that call president Obama a dictator or king (or an apologetic sissy, depending on the circumstances).

Here's what I don't quite understand )
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The Newsroom is Aaron Sorkin's most recent TV production (his earlier work included the award winning series The West Wing, and his movie The Social Network, which won several academy awards. The Newsroom is about a fictional cable network news channel (ACN) and its producer Will McAvoy (played by Jeff Daniels), news division president Charlie Skinner (played by Sam Waterston), and the owner of the parent company: Leona Lansing (played by Jane Fonda). And as you'd expect, there are a lot of personal stories intertwined behind the headlines ACN is covering in its nightly news programs.

The Newsroom is in its third and final season on HBO; and its current story arcs are dealing such topics as the Boston Marathon Bombing, a possible corporate take-over, a network struggling with lowered ratings, an ACN employee who is facing possible federal charges for being in the possession of highly classified information, with FBI raids conducted on the network's offices, removing hard drives, etc. All of the writing is pretty great (no surprise with Aaron Sorkin at the helm, really) showing the constant struggle of accurate news reporting with a network's need to make money to stay in business and scooping the competition.

To prevent a possible leak by an ACN reporter (the reporter overheard an EPA official making disparaging remarks about the administration and its lack of focus on climate change), that same EPA official agrees to give an on-air-interview regarding a new report on CO2 levels passing THE milestone of 400 parts per million.

And out of the blue, that interview with the EPA official's interview took place on last Sunday's episode.

While the interview is fictional, the information contained in it is not. A lot of the fictional EPA official's information was based on a study co-conducted by NASA's Goddard Space Flight Center. When the fictional EPA official stated that people alive today would likely die from catastrophic planetary failure, that was based a real analysis of data.

Although the study based on HANDY is largely theoretical - a 'thought-experiment' - a number of other more empirically-focused studies - by KPMG and the UK Government Office of Science for instance - have warned that the convergence of food, water and energy crises could create a 'perfect storm' within about fifteen years. But these 'business as usual' forecasts could be very conservative.


But unlike the ACN interview, the NASA report does offer a faint glimmer of hope:

Collapse can be avoided and population can reach equilibrium if the per capita rate of depletion of nature is reduced to a sustainable level, and if resources are distributed in a reasonably equitable fashion.

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Originally posted by [ profile] ricomsmith77 at "The Truth about FACTS......'Cause They Are Stubborn As Hell!"
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The truth is, I wasn't the smartest kid in school.  In fact, I found myself struggling at times in certain subjects.....especially in math. I HATED MATH!  There was no other class I dreaded going to more than my high school math class.  From Geometry to Algebra to Calculus, math was the one subject that I had the hardest time with and failed on a consistant basis.  Now it's true that I probably could have paid more attention in math class, but honestly I just wasn't that interested in numbers.  I didn't think I would ever need to use a lot of math in my lifetime, because I knew I wasn't ever going to become a doctor or a scientist.  Those guys are smart......REALLY smart.  They did well in math and science in school, because those are the kind of careers that require you to know your numbers and stats.  They have to get those numbers and stats right every time.  And they have to test out those numbers and stats over and over and over again until they can prove to everyone that what they are telling you is a proven fact.  And it is supposed to be binding and non-arguementative.......and STUBBORN as all hell to disprove.....

....but then Barack Obama became the first African American President.

And facts became null and void across the country.

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It's said that "If you're not outraged, you're not paying attention." Sadly most people think being outraged is the point, and the paying attention part is optional.

July 2017

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