196 Responses to Open Thread Non-Petroleum March 9, 2017

  1. Hightrekker says:

    After winning the US Presidential Election, he is giving a few tools away to counter the Deep State:


    The Dim’s and HRC made a major mistake setting him up for extradition.
    I would be up for some deal making soon.
    Can you imagine what Snowden has on them?

    • Oldfarmermac says:

      I’w willing to believe that the majority of high ranking members of both parties would rather see Assange, Snowden, and others of their sort in hell than free to talk in front of federal judges.

      Personally I see them as patriots who care about their country and put the interests of the people ahead of the interests of the government.

      • Nick G says:

        Snowden, yes.

        Assange, not so much. He has been irresponsible in his lack of “moderation” of the data he has accepted and released, and he’s allowed his organization to be manipulated.

        Avery news or data-disseminating organization has a responsibility, especially for “whistle-blowing”.

        • Survivalist says:

          I tend to think wikileaks is a cutout for Russian intelligence service to publish leaks. It’s a front.

          • Oldfarmermac says:

            I personally find it highly amusing that hard core liberals have typically been highly suspicious of outfits like the CIA and other spy outfits, so long as they are talking about Republicans and Republican policies and scandals.

            And they have been historically rather defensive or even supportive of Russia and the old USSR until very recently. Now that they are a handy scapegoat, along with wikileaks, they have learned some new songs, lol, given that the scandals uncovered involve Democrats.

            Russia may well be involved in hacking the D emails, I would not be at all surprised if this is true.

            I believe sunshine is the greatest possible disinfectant when it comes to curing rot in the body politic, and so far as I am concerned, the only really relevant question is whether the emails, etc, are genuine.

            And ninety nine percent of all the D mouth pieces in the country, probably, would be agreeing with me if the emails had been hacked from the R party.

            Suppose they had been first uncovered by reporters for the NYT, or the Washington Post?

            Where would the indignation be in THAT case ?

            Now about fake news, I don’t see enough details made available to have an opinion, but it’s clear to me that both the D and R party are more than willing to manipulate the news for partisan advantage.

            The R’s are the worst. MUCH MUCH worse. An order of magnitude worse,TWO orders recently, since the last election.

            And let’s not forget while we are hyperventilating that Uncle Sam has been interfering in the internal affairs of other countries on a more or less permanent basis for going on a century now. Before that, the interference might not have been CONTINUOUS, but it was still fairly common place.

            Spying is what spy’s do, that’s the way they earn their paycheck.

            For what it’s worth, I am strongly inclined to believe Trump and his homies have already cut some less than savory deals with the Russians, but so far, there is no clear proof to my knowledge.

            As best I remember, half or more of the big foreign donors to the Clinton family outfit during her tenure as Sec of State were big players with serious business with Uncle Sam in general and Foggy Bottom in particular.

            Is anybody here fool enough to BELIEVE most of these donations, distributed this way, compared to at random, were made without expectation, or at least on the gamble, of some favorable treatment at some point in time?

            Politics is a nasty business.

            People like Assange are one of our best defenses against corrupt people gaining control of our government.

            • I personally find it highly amusing that hard core liberals have typically been highly suspicious of outfits like the CIA and other spy outfits, so long as they are talking about Republicans and Republican policies and scandals.

              Baloney. Liberals are suspicious of outfits like the CIA to spy on US citizens, not “other outfits”. They are supposed to spy on “other outfits”, that’s their fucking job.

              And they have been historically rather defensive or even supportive of Russia and the old USSR until very recently.

              Total bullshit! Liberals have been among the most critical of Russia’s human rights record. They have never defended it.

              Russia may well be involved in hacking the D emails, I would not be at all surprised if this is true.

              May have been involved? Are you fucking kidding me. There was never any doubt about it. Only Trump and his ilk ever suggested that it was some fat man sitting on his bed doing the hacking. We know it was Russia.

              And ninety nine percent of all the D mouth pieces in the country, probably, would be agreeing with me if the emails had been hacked from the R party.

              But the R party’s emails were not hacked by the Russians. They only hacked the Democrats emails because they wanted to support their guy Trump. It is not about the fucking party the Russians wanted to help, it is the fact that they, that is Russia, was involved in helping Trump win the election.

              Why don’t you republicans just admit it. With the help of Russia and the FBI director, we have elected a goddamn stupid con artist idiot for a president. Now we will have to live with that very stupid decision for four years.

              To repeat Fred’s favorite quote:

              “Although it is not true that all conservatives are stupid people, it is true that most stupid people are conservative.” – John Stuart Mill

              Let me rephrase that in today’s language.

              Although it is not true that all republicans are stupid people, it is true that most stupid people are republicans. – Ron Patterson

              • Hightrekker says:

                A different analysis from a Pulitzer Prize winning journalist:

                (I could give various other examples of people examining this who are very skeptical)

              • Not-A-Brainwashed-One says:

                “We know it was Russia.” ~ R. Patterson

                Director of Intelligence on Meet The Press, 3/5/2017

                ” CHUCK TODD:

                … Let me ask you this. Does intelligence exist that can definitively answer the following question, whether there were improper contacts between the Trump campaign and Russian officials?

                JAMES CLAPPER:

                We did not include any evidence in our report, and I say, “our,” that’s N.S.A., F.B.I. and C.I.A., with my office, the Director of National Intelligence, that had anything, that had any reflection of collusion between members of the Trump campaign and the Russians. There was no evidence of that included in our report.

                CHUCK TODD:

                I understand that. But does it exist?

                JAMES CLAPPER:

                Not to my knowledge.

                CHUCK TODD:

                If it existed, it would have been in this report?

                JAMES CLAPPER:

                This could have unfolded or become available in the time since I left the government.”

                Ron, perhaps you know something Clapper doesn’t (even though he listens to EVERY phone call or SMS you and I make, and/or every keystroke you and I type…).
                Please, enlighten us…

                • Survivalist says:

                  James Clapper lied to congress. I’m sure he’ll lie to Chuck Todd. Don’t be so brainwashed lol

            • Nick G says:

              People like Assange are one of our best defenses against corrupt people gaining control of our government.

              If “people like Assange” means whistleblowers in general, then I’d agree. If it means “media which don’t properly vet their tips and informants, and therefore destroy their own reputation and aid bad actors”, then I’d disagree.

              Snowden has been very responsible. He and his media partners have carefully vetted the information they released. Assange…not at all, at least relatively lately.

              I always ask myself: how would I feel about this accusation if it was against someone of the opposite party? For instance, would I care if someone had accused George Bush of an affair with an intern? (I wouldn’t, by the way). This definitely passes that test.

              One final thought: partisan leaking of information happens all the time. Publishers should make sure the information is useful to the public (i.e., is newsworthy) and above all else that it is honest and accurate. Assange didn’t do that.

            • Survivalist says:

              I’m not saying guys like Assange aren’t useful defences against corruption. I’m just saying he’s an FSB front and he’ll expose corruption when it suits Russia.
              I tend to think that on a spectrum of useful idiot to Manchurian candidate that Trump is mor of a useful idiot to FSB. FSB quickly realized Trump is a moron with protean values and beliefs who they can win against so they leaked some Hillary emails, via wikileaks, to make her look like a bitch and thereby promote their interest.
              I’m pretty sure wikileaks is an FSB job. FSB can’t do press releases of the stuff they hack so they make up some truth crusader front and say it was gotten as a leak.

              This guy lately has been writing frequently on the Trump-FSB nexus.


              • twocats says:

                I find it suspicious that Democrats/liberals whatever liked Wikileaks when it was going against Bush II, but have now switched against it when it went against Hillary.

                In Assange’s defense, they’ve basically confined him to house arrest in Ecuadoran embassy for four plus years due to threat of extradition to US. Obama is responsible for that. I would probably hand over leaks to (or accept from, whatever) Russians as well. I’d certainly be interested in using that information to get DJT elected. If I were Assange and had even an inkling of anarchism in my veins DJT is probably the best thing that has happened in my lifetime.

                • Survivalist says:

                  I don’t take much interest in what people of various political stripes think of wikileaks. It could just as easily be pointed out that Republicans/conservatives whatever disliked wikileaks when it was going against Bush II and have now switched to liking it when it went against Obama/Hillary. Wikileaks will be used against America. Over time that will include both Democrats and Republicans.
                  I’m interested in wikileaks for what it is, and in my opinion that is an FSB front. I could care less what a bunch of brainwashed idealists and partisan hacks think of it as its American political targets vary over time.
                  The left-right paradigm is a stage set for idiots to argue upon about how they should best be enslaved.
                  Oh and BTW Assange is an Australian. DJT will not be improving his life. Trump called wikileaks disgraceful and suggested there should be a death penalty for their actions.
                  I’m not sure what you think anarchism is but it’s got nothing to do with DJT. Try reading some Kropotkin.

                  “When one has talent, everything contributes to its development.” Pyotr Kropotkin, Memoirs of a Revolutionist.


                • HuntingtonBeach says:

                  ” anarchism in my veins DJT is probably the best thing that has happened in my lifetime.”

                  Everything Trump does is against the U.S. and the West

                • Twocats wrote: In Assange’s defense, they’ve basically confined him to house arrest in Ecuadoran embassy for four plus years due to threat of extradition to US. Obama is responsible for that.

                  Total absolute bullshit:

                  Why is Julian Assange still inside the Ecuadorian embassy in London?

                  The saga began in Sweden.

                  Mr Assange was in the country in August 2010, to speak at a conference. While he was there he met two women and had sex with them. They later filed complaints of rape and molestation – accusations that he denied. Mr Assange was questioned but never charged, and left the country.

                  On November 20, Interpol issued a Red Notice for Mr Assange’s arrest. A week later he gave himself up, appeared before a judge in Westminster, and in December 2010 was granted bail after his supporters paid £240,000 in cash and sureties.

                  Legal wrangling in the UK continued until June 2012, with the Swedish prosecutors calling for him to be extradited, and Mr Assange’s lawyers saying that if he was sent to Sweden he would be at risk of then being extradited to the US.

                  On June 19, 2012, he fled bail and applied for asylum in Ecuador, through the embassy in Knightsbridge. But police encircled the embassy and refused to allow him to leave: the UK says its courts have ruled he must be sent to Sweden.

                  Ecuador granted him asylum in August 2012, but as soon as he sets foot outside the building Britain will deport him to Sweden. He has been inside the embassy ever since.

                  Is there a real risk he will be extradited from Sweden to the US?

                  Mr Assange has not been charged with any crime, but there is an arrest warrant relating to the 2010 allegations. In May last year Sweden’s Supreme Court rejected Mr Assange’s attempt to lift the warrant.

                  Sweden’s extradition agreement with the United States was signed in October 1961 and updated in March 1983. It prohibits extradition on the basis of “a political offence” or “an offence connected with a political offence”.

                  But his supporters fear that he could be “snatched” by the CIA and spirited away to the US, regardless of the extradition treaty.

                  There are no charges against him in the US, although he fears he could be put on trial for espionage.

                  Yet The Washington Post reported in 2013 that the Justice Department had concluded there was no way it could prosecute him.

                  “The problem the department has always had in investigating Julian Assange is there is no way to prosecute him for publishing information without the same theory being applied to journalists,” former Justice Department spokesman Matthew Miller told the paper. “And if you are not going to prosecute journalists for publishing classified information, which the department is not, then there is no way to prosecute Assange.”

                  The idea that this is all Obama’s fault and that he is still there because of Obama, who is no longer in office, is stupid beyond belief.

                  Why is he still there when Obama is gone? Trumps State Department would obviously not prosecute him. Hell, Trump would more likely pin a medal on him for helping him win the election. He is there because he is afraid of being convicted of rape in Sweden.

            • alimbiquated says:

              It is amazing how much you believe you are a free thinker, even though you have been thoroughly hypnotized by Republican propaganda about “hard core libs” and “Hillary”.

              • HuntingtonBeach says:

                I couldn’t agree more with you alimbiquated about my friend OldMacdonald aka KGB

                Hook, line and sinker

          • Caelan MacIntyre says:

            I’ll tell you something funny that happened online about a year ago when I commented under one of Russia Today’s videos at their site, regarding, if recalled, something that smelled equally funny related to ISIS/ISIL vis-a-vis the ‘hacking group’, ‘Anonymous’…

            In my comment, I created a hypothetical conversation between a few governments that went very roughly something like this:

            Government One: “Hey, I have an idea!”
            Government Two: “Oh ya? What’s that?”
            Government One: “Why don’t we make it look like we’re Anonymous for some kind of operation?”
            Government Three: “That’s a great idea!”
            Government One: “Yes, we could get something done and make it look like we’re the good guys!”

            Anyway, they kept deleting my post roughly in realtime, I kept posting it, and so they pulled my plug and/or disabled comments for that story.

            The problem with Anonymous should be obvious by its anonymity; that it could be anyone or any outfit. Wikileaks is not immune.

            Naturally, the problem with these kinds of ‘double/triple/etc. monkey agent smokescreened chess games’ is that they can inevitably cascade over their own edges and make a mess of what they might think they are trying to accomplish…

            …which I suppose is essentially the whole point of ‘government’.

  2. HuntingtonBeach says:

    EPA Chief Scott Pruitt Disagrees With Science On Another Major Climate Change Issue

    He said he doesn’t believe carbon dioxide emissions are to blame.

    Environmental Protection Agency chief Scott Pruitt on Thursday doubled down on climate change denial, saying he doesn’t believe carbon dioxide is to blame for global warming.

    “I think that measuring with precision human activity on the climate is something very challenging to do and there’s tremendous disagreement about the degree of impact, so no, I would not agree that it’s a primary contributor to the global warming that we see,” he told CNBC. “We need to continue the debate and continue the review and the analysis.”


    • alleycat_1959 says:

      The more I read about the subject the more I come to believe Mr. Pruitt has the correct idea. Here’s my main problem which I have been unable get clear answers on, which would lower my skepticism. From what I do know from my reading, if the atmosphere was split up into one million square pieces one inch in length, then placed end to end, the pieces would run from Miami up the Turnpike nearly to Orlando. Maybe 190 miles or so. Now of that one million pieces, 385 would be CO2. 385 inches = 32 feet. Of these 385 pieces, by far the overwhelming majority are put “there” by natural causes like oceans and volcanoes. Man is responsible for just 4%, or 15.4 pieces = 15.4 inches. Now explain to me how in the name of everything Holy can 15.4 particles out of one million possibly drive climate to any meaningful extent?

      • Doug Leighton says:

        The odds a person who weighs 160 lbs who ingests 0.36 gm of potassium cyanide will die within three days is 50-50 and if she ingests 0.55 gm, the probability is over 90%. Now explain to me, how in the name of everything Holy can that be?

      • islandboy says:

        It’s the same way more than 1 mg of arsenic per kg of body weight added to one days intake of food will kill you. Don’t believe me? I dare you to try it!

      • wehappyfew says:

        We have troll sign!!!

        What can we learn from this troll.

        1. It’s using a relatively old and worn out trolling meme. How can we tell? CO2 concentration was 385 ppm in 2008, so this troll point is pushing nine years old. Maybe they forgot to read the instructions in the troll package to update the numbers to present day to maintain troll-meme freshness.

        2. Troll can’t Googlify. Otherwise troll would have done a search to see if this denier talking point had a quick and easy refutation. (hint: it does… surprising, no?)

        3. Troll is innumerate. Unable to handle simple arithmetic. Incompetent at balancing a checkbook level of innumeracy. Otherwise troll would see that the natural inflows and outflows of CO2 into and out of the biosphere and ocean… plus the human-caused release of CO2 from burning fossil fuels … explain the change in CO2 levels in one simple mass-balance equation. It is no more complicated than balancing a checkbook, which means it is incomprehensible to about 40% of Americans.

        Please tell us more, alleycat, so that we might learn more about your sluggish and simple thought processes.

        • alleycat_1959 says:

          How about instead of bullying me like a typical Smarty Pants Lib you explain to me, what is a mass-balance equation? Why does it apply to my original Question?

          • Doug Leighton says:

            Read this: THE GREENHOUSE EFFECT


          • wehappyfew says:

            It’s pretty simple:

            First, open a web browser page.

            Second, type in google.com in the wide rectangle at the top.

            Third, type in a word or phrase that describes the main subject we are interested in. In this case, we are interested in “climate”

            Fourth, type in a word or phrase that narrows that subject down in the direction of the question you are trying to answer, so you are interested in how CO2 affects climate, so our search phrase grows to “climate co2” (Google doesn’t care about capitalization).

            Fifth, add a phrase that describes the specific question. It doesn’t have to be complete sentence or even a question, Google will match up the best web pages for your phrase. That makes “climate co2 mass balance equation”

            But don’t use quotation marks (most of the time)… so now we have…

            climate co2 mass balance equation

            Sixth, hit enter.

            Read every result that looks like college lecture notes, a book, or a website dedicated to scientific information about climate.

            Google tailors its results to what it thinks are your “preferences”, so my search results won’t be the same as yours necessarily.

            The first result in my search list is this:


            Material Balances for Carbon


            Many of the earth’s natural processes are cyclic. The circulation of water between oceans, atmosphere and continents is a familiar example. Another is the transformation and movement of carbon-containing compounds for which the immediately obvious elements are the photosynthetic generation by plants of carbohydrates from carbon dioxide and the consumption of carbohydrates by herbivores who regenerate carbon dioxide through respiration. (As we shall see shortly, the complete carbon cycle involves a number of additional processes.) Such cycles are termed “biogeochemical cycles.”…

            From here:


            It looks like a lecture from Notre Dame – a very good university in the United States. It explains in basic introductory terms the concept of mass balance, applies it to the carbon cycle, and does so with very easy arithmetic – no calculus, trig, complex exponents, logarithms, etc.

            Now you try it.

          • Dennis Coyne says:

            Hi Alleycat,

            try the following videos


            especially Chapter 3

            If you prefer to read try


            Another good source for information is


            The greenhouse effect is explained at the link below


            Do some reading (or watching) and maybe you can come up with better questions.

      • Survivalist says:

        Lol so you figured out how many inches from Miami to the Orlando turnpike but ya can’t run a search engine and figure out an answer to your own question. Ah the mysteries of the universe!


      • Synapsid says:


        The atmosphere is almost entirely nitrogen and oxygen; CO2 is present only in parts per million, which is your point, I think.

        Nitrogen and oxygen do not absorb infrared radiation, which we feel as heat, but CO2 does and that is the reason CO2 is important in controlling Earth’s surface temperature. It does the same thing that the clothing we put on in order to stay warm does–it intercepts infrared that otherwise would head out into space just as the clothing keeps our body heat (infrared) near us.

        Without CO2 (and methane and N2O) the global surface temperature, taking albedo effects into consideration, would be about -5 degrees Fahrenheit–frozen solid.

        • Amanda Di Gironimo says:

          ==As a reminder to you==

          The Air = 78 % nitrogen
          20.9 % oxygen
          1 % argon
          0.04 % co2

          The Human’s contribution to annual co2 amounts = variable …. possibly as much as 11 % (some years … highest estimation)

          The Increase in global temperatures the humans are responsible for in last 50 years = 0.25 °c …. based on adjudicated temperature records

          Effect of the above = minuscule …. is it really worth worrying about?

          • GoneFishing says:

            Warning, village news alert.

          • wharf rat says:

            “Big Things Come In Small Packages ”
            Svante Arrhenius

          • Dennis Coyne says:

            Hi Amanda,

            Of the increase in atmospheric CO2 from 278 ppm in 1750 to 403 ppm in 2016, humans are responsible for all of it.

            What is not well understood by most people is that the CO2 remains in the atmosphere at these levels for an average of about 30,000 years.

            Most scientists believe this level of carbon dioxide will result in
            3*ln(405/278)=1.1 C of warming above the average Holocene pre-industrial level, before considering the effects of ice sheet melting and releases of carbon from permafrost thaw. When those are included, the estimate increases to about 4.2*ln(405/278)=1.6 C above average Holocene preindustrial temperatures (approximately the 1971-2000 average Global land ocean temperature).

            I have made the unrealistic assumption that there are no more human carbon emissions after 2016. A more feasible estimate is an eventual level of atmospheric CO2 of about 475 ppm.

            That results in a warming of 4.2*ln(475/278)=2.25 C and that is only if we aggressively reduce carbon emissions.

            The “safe” limit is 2 C above pre-industrial Holocene average temperatures according to most ecologists (or likely less, maybe 1.5C).

            So for the scientifically literate person this is a problem.

            The “debate” about this is much like the debate over cigarette smoking being harmful to humans.

            Do you believe that cigarette smoking is good for you?

            • Fred Magyar says:

              Do you believe that cigarette smoking is good for you?

              It sure as hell is good for someone’s bottom line…


              Simon Bowers
              Thursday 22 March 2012
              Revenues from global tobacco sales are estimated to be close to $500bn (£316bn), generating combined profits for the six largest firms of $35.1bn – more than $1,100 a second.


              Tobacco-Related Spending

              In 2014, tobacco companies spent more than $9 billion marketing cigarettes and smokeless tobacco in the United States. This amount translates to nearly $25 million each day, or about $1 million every hour.

              Cost of Smoking-Related Illness
              Smoking-related illness in the United States costs more than $300 billion each year, including:
              Nearly $170 billion for direct medical care for adults
              More than $156 billion in lost productivity, including $5.6 billion in lost productivity due to secondhand smoke exposure

              It is no coincidence that the same motherfuckers who were hired to sow doubt on the negative health affects of smoking tobacco are also still working to spread misinformation about how the burning of fossil fuels and CO2 emissions are not the main cause of climate change.


              Merchants of Doubt

              The troubling story of how a cadre of influential scientists have clouded public understanding of scientific facts to advance a political and economic agenda.

              The U.S. scientific community has long led the world in research on public health, environmental science, and other issues affecting the quality of life. Our scientists have produced landmark studies on the dangers of DDT, tobacco smoke, acid rain, and global warming. But at the same time, a small yet potent subset of this community leads the world in vehement denial of these dangers.

              In their new book, Merchants of Doubt, historians Naomi Oreskes and Erik Conway explain how a loose–knit group of high-level scientists, with extensive political connections, ran effective campaigns to mislead the public and deny well-established scientific knowledge over four decades. In seven compelling chapters addressing tobacco, acid rain, the ozone hole, global warming, and DDT, Oreskes and Conway roll back the rug on this dark corner of the American scientific community, showing how the ideology of free market fundamentalism, aided by a too-compliant media, has skewed public understanding of some of the most pressing issues of our era.

              These people should be tried for crimes against humanity and mass murder!

            • Amanda Di Gironimo says:

              ==Personal freedoms==

              smoking cigarettes is a matter of personal freedom, that the government Shall Not Infringe. it is morally and ethically wrong for government to tell you how to live your life by telling you what you can or cant do. Any government which does do these things is communist, which our Country rejects. This is the same deal with outputting co2 emissions. we need to have the freedoms to live the lifestyles we want including having a high co2 output if we want. Maintaining personal freedoms is more important then any impacts. In my opinion.

              • notanoilman says:

                Not when it harms other people.


              • Survivalist says:

                How about abortion and smoking marijuana, is that personal freedom too?

                “it is morally and ethically wrong for government to tell you how to live your life by telling you what you can or cant do. Any government which does do these things is communist”

                So a government that tells you what you can and cannot do is a communist government? You’re politically illiterate. I also doubt that you know the definition of morality and ethics, or the difference between them. Looks like some of the mouth breathers from WUWT have been finding their way over.


                • Amanda Di Gironimo says:

                  ==On abortion==

                  because you asked, i will explain abortion is vary different matter, as it involves a unborn child, that has no personal freedoms because it can’t make its’ own decisions and exists in a vulnerable state. unborn children have a fundamental Right to Life. period. so to protect completely that Fruit Of The Womb we need moral Authority to guide us. the best answer is allowing religious leaders to get in to all our politics so the unborn can be protected, absolutely. you just cant give the lay people the choice of abortion, it leads to a complete breakdown of society. for people are born with original sin, and so can never be intrusted with Life Issues the same way they can with the personal freedoms the communists want to take away. Abortion is, and always will be a complete non negotiable issue. You can contact the Voting Guides for Catholics to learn fully, all the issues i am discussing here.

                  ==Sources to help on your journey==


                  • Fred Magyar says:

                    You may not like this Amanda.
                    Abortion is legal in the USA.

                    BTW an unborn child is called a fetus and even that, only after eight weeks post conception.

                    Furthermore: Fetuses Don’t Have Rights; Pregnant Women Do; This Distinction is Crucial


                    Various opponents of abortion like to pretend that, if a woman has a right to seek an abortion, the law can do nothing to protect a fetus that a woman wishes to carry to term. But that pretense is nonsense.

                    As Diana Hsieh and I have argued, an embryo or a fetus is not a person, and a woman has a right to seek an abortion. However, that does not mean a fetus has no value: A fetus is enormously valuable to the pregnant woman and the father who want to have a child. Just as a woman has a right to abort a fetus, so she has a right to carry it to term, unmolested by others. Although the fetus does not have rights of its own, the pregnant woman has rights; thus, the government properly protects her body, its contents, and her choice to bring the fetus to term.

                  • Survivalist says:

                    Ah yes, Jesus! My favourite Jewish apocalyptic preacher. John the Baptist is my second fav. After centuries of being conquered by the Babylonians, Persians, Greeks and Romans, it must have tough for Jews of Jesus’ time to reconcile their perpetual subjugation with the idea that they were Yahweh’s “chosen people”.
                    What more than several 100 pages of Bronze and Iron Age tribal dogma and Biblical literalism could one need for moral guidance in the 21st century?

                  • wharf rat says:

                    “the best answer is allowing religious leaders to get in to all our politics”


                    Pope Francis’s encyclical on ecology, Laudato Si, says that climate change is real and mainly “a result of human activity.”

                    Never have we so hurt and mistreated our common home as we have in the last two hundred years.” We must all change our day-to-day actions to live more sustainably. “Reducing greenhouse gases requires honesty, courage and responsibility.” On a larger scale, our leaders must be held to account. “Those who will have to suffer the consequences . . . will not forget this failure of conscience and responsibility.”


                    When God created Adam, he showed him all the trees of the Garden of Eden and said to him: “See my works, how lovely they are, how fine they are. All I have created, I created for you. Take care not to corrupt and destroy my universe, for if you destroy it, no one will come after you to put it right.”

                    (Ecclesiastes Rabbah 7)

                    Yahweh’s “chosen people”….

                    “Oh Shit,” Say Jews

                  • notanoilman says:

                    Sorry ducks, not everyone is a Catholic. In fact, they are a minority.


                  • Hickory says:

                    I believe in separation of State and Church! Stay out of my business theologians- I’ll take care of make-believe on my own, thank you.

                  • Nathanael says:

                    I’ll just point out one scientific fact to see if the implications get through your brain:

                    Over 50% of all pregnancies *spontaneously* abort. Proven scientific fact.

                    So if you think abortion is immoral, what are you going to do about that? Do you think it’s OK for God to commit the biggest routine mass murder ever? How can you morally worship such a monster? You should think about what you believe rather than brainlessly parrotting the bullshit your corrupt priests have told you.

                    Or maybe, just maybe, Catholic doctrine in the *18th* century was correct and ensoulment doesn’t happen until the Quickening (which is *also* the Roe v. Wade cutoff).

                    And the priests who changed the Catholic doctrine in the 19th century were just wrong. You probably didn’t know that the Catholic Church is lying about how old their “life begins at conception” doctrine is; it’s a 19th century doctrine. Totally contrary to over a thousand years of Christian tradition and belief.

              • Fred Magyar says:

                Any government which does do these things is communist, which our Country rejects. This is the same deal with outputting co2 emissions. we need to have the freedoms to live the lifestyles we want including having a high co2 output if we want.

                You have to truly be one of the most ignorant clueless people I have ever come across. Even with Scott Pruitt as head of the EPA there are still hundreds of substances that are regulated and which neither you nor anyone else are allowed to release into the environment regardless of how you think it might effect your individual lifestyle. In case you don’t believe me ask BP how much they had to pay out to mitigate environmental damage after the Macondo oil spill.

                Also, aside from your apparent ignorance of the fact that the Communist party is a legally established political party in the USA since 1919, you also don’t seem to have any clue that the entire notion of ‘Country’ or ‘Nation State’ is pure fiction. My apologies if that information makes your little head explode!

                Here’s an essay for your reading pleasure that is sure to mess with your xenophobic self centered nationalist notions! Again, don’t take my word for it, go ask some of the top generals at the DOD if they are concerned…


                Age of Migration: The Fiction of the Nation-State
                As part of our series This Age of Migration, Paul Currion argues that the existence of refugees exposes the nation-state as a convenient fiction, leading governments to view refugees as an existential threat – yet how we deal with refugees will define who we are in the 21st century.

                • Fred Magyar says:

                  Apparently Exxon was not the only major oil company to know about the drastic consequences of burning fossil fuels! Here’s the low down on Shell’s take back in 1986.


                  Already in 1986, Shell warned in a confidential report for the serious consequences of climate change caused by CO2 emissions. Correspondent writes today in a reconstruction based on internal documents, which also appears in The Guardian. Also publish a number of other European newspapers about it.

                  It is also already concluded that the use of fossil fuels up contributes to global warming. However, the multinational since hardly changed its course and Shell almost exclusively invests in fossil fuels, says Jelmer Mommers journalist who has worked for the story Correspondent, in the NOS Radio 1 News .

                  The Shell report from 1986 states that global warming could cause parts of the earth will become uninhabitable. It also warned of flooding, extreme weather and migration flows, in short, “changes that will prove the greatest in history,” Mommers quotes from the piece.

              • Dennis Coyne says:

                Hi Amanda,

                The smoking effects others. Much of the increased healthcare costs come from smoking.

                As long as people who choose freely to smoke, don’t accept health care from Medicaid or Medicare, then I would have no problem with it.

                The high levels of CO2 will effect the environment for at least 100,000 years, you can choose to ruin the planet for your heirs, but it effects all life on the planet.

                In civilized capitalist economies pollution is taxed,this is basic mainstream neoclassical economics.


                Smoking, air and water pollution and carbon dioxide pollution are all different forms of externality.

                What do you do with your trash?

                Do you dump it in your neighbor’s yard?

                • HuntingtonBeach says:

                  Hi Dennis,

                  “As long as people who choose freely to smoke, don’t accept health care from Medicaid or Medicare, then I would have no problem with it.”

                  It’s not just Medicaid and Medicare. Smokers also cost insurance companies. Who have to pass their costs forward to their customers. Costing all society. Now on the other hand. Smokers save Social Security money.

                • Amanda Di Gironimo says:


                  till 2015 our neighbor burned all his trash for us, in his big metal barrel. then the County came by, and took it away, then said he couldn’t do it any more. Now he still burns some cardboard, plastic wrappings and styrofoam, but only in the evening, and only if he is cooking on the grill.

                  • HuntingtonBeach says:

                    Just to be clear, that’s the nurse at the county mental hospital, right ?

                  • notanoilman says:

                    Oooooh, there’s some interesting stuff in styrofoam, not good to burn and you really don’t want to inhale the smoke. Oh dear, he’s exercising his freedom and bugger to your health. But why not just put it in the trash for the municipality to collect?


                  • Nathanael says:

                    It’s totally illegal to burn styrofoam for very good reason — it emits REALLY NASTY toxic substances. Throw it in the trash.

  3. GoneFishing says:

    Here is a fairly simple and clear explanation of why astrophysicists think dark matter exists.


    As you can surmise, there is a long ladder of logic and a lot of alternative explanations for the observed phenomena.

  4. wehappyfew says:

    Not looking good for arctic sea ice.

    Comparison of 2012, 2016, and 2017 by the US Navy ice model shown below.

    Very little multi-year thick ice left, and the first year ice is far thinner, especially in and around the Chukchi Sea.

    Last year, the Beaufort was especially thin, and melted out almost immediately … the purple area near the Mackenzie River delta, but most of the rest of the first year ice was above 2 – 2.5 meters thick, most of that survived.

    This year there is much less first year ice above 1.75 meters thick. With just average melt weather, that is not thick enough to survive the summer.

    Depending on the wind direction and speed, I expect large areas of open water in the Main Arctic Ocean itself, not just peripheral melt. If the wind blows clockwise in a normal Beaufort Gyre, the small area of thick first year ice around the pole and the tiny amount of multi-year ice north of Greenland and CAA will blow into the Beaufort, leaving the North Pole completely open water for the first time in recorded history.

    If the wind blows towards the Fram Strait as it did in 2012, the thick ice will be exported, leaving the Beaufort, Chukchi and the Pacific half of the Central Arctic Basin complete open water, with maybe a remnant at the pole.

    If the winds are variable or not very strong, it will just melt in place, and probably compact a bit.

    In all three scenarios, there will be clear sailing across most of the Arctic Ocean, not just the NW Passage and NE Passage… maybe we can call it the Polar Passage.

    Record lows by every measure are almost guaranteed. There is not enough time left for cold weather to thicken the ice, and the forcast is for more record warmth soon anyway. The brief, nearly normal “cold spell” for the Arctic is over. It is a troubling symptom of the warming in progress when temperatures that are ALMOST low enough to be just above average count as a cold spell.

  5. George Kaplan says:

    New Columbia ENSO report out. El Nino looking more likely than than not after July. La Nina not likely this year.


  6. islandboy says:

    EIA: Wind outpaces hydro to lead U.S. renewable energy capacity

    Dive Insight:

    EIA’s post this week confirms an announcement the American Wind Energy Association made back in February: that wind energy has the largest base of installed capacity among renewable resources in the United States.

    AWEA made the proclamation but wound up amending its statement a day after issuing it to detail the source of its figures. The group used data from EIA’s Electric Power Monthly for November 2016 (table 6.2.B), to show installed resources and then considered planned additions.

    According to EIA, installed wind capacity ended 2016 at 81,312 MW compared with 79,985 MW of hydro.

  7. islandboy says:

    U.S. Solar Market Has Record-Breaking Year, Total Market Poised to Triple in Next Five Years

    The U.S. solar market had its biggest year ever in 2016, nearly doubling its previous record and adding more electric generating capacity than any other source of energy for the first time ever.

    Over the next five years, the cumulative U.S. solar market is expected to nearly triple in size, even as a slight dip is expected in 2017. GTM Research and the Solar Energy Industries Association (SEIA) announced these historic figures today in the U.S. Solar Market Insight 2016 Year-in-Review report.

    On average, U.S. solar photovoltaic (PV) system pricing fell by nearly 20 percent in 2016. This is the greatest average year-over-year price decline since GTM Research began modelling pricing in this report series.

    “It would be hard to overstate how impressive 2016 was for the solar industry,” said Abigail Ross Hopper, SEIA’s president and CEO. “Prices dropped to all-time lows, installations expanded in states across the country and job numbers soared. The bottom line is that more people are benefitting from solar now than at any point in the past, and while the market is changing, the broader trend over the next five years is going in one direction – and that’s up.”

    The report forecasts that an impressive 13.2 gigawatts (GW) of solar PV will be installed in the U.S. in 2017, a 10 percent drop from 2016, though still 75 percent more than was installed in 2015. The dip will occur solely in the utility-scale market, following the unprecedented number of utility-scale projects that came online in the latter half of 2016, most originally scheduled for completion before the original expiration of the federal Investment Tax Credit, which has since been extended. By 2019, the utility-scale segment is expected to rebound, with year-over-year growth across the board.

    This story puts US utility scale solar capacity additions at over 10 GW as opposed to the roughly 7.7 GW reported in the latest edition of the EIA’s Electric Power Monthly almost two weeks ago. It re3mainsw to be seen what accounts for the greater than 2 GW discrepancy.

    This story and the one I posted above it may explain why the Koch brothers and other FF interests are so anxious to get a hold of government and regulatory power. It would be easy to imagine that these interests would just love to stop renewable energy in it’s tracks but, it appears it might be a little too late for that now.

    • GoneFishing says:

      We should be installing at least 50 GW per year. There is no good reason why the trend should slow down now.

      • Hightrekker says:

        As good of a use of fossil fuel as any.

        • GoneFishing says:

          Yep, fossil fuel can participate in it’s own demise.

            • GoneFishing says:

              Trench warfare takes a horrible toll on the front line. The idealists work hard but their thin cloak of idealism is easily worn down because chanting to the crowd rarely works past a short time. They also weaken themselves by not realizing the huge strides that have been made.
              The reserves that will fill the trenches now are more cynical an will not waste time trying to convince the inconvincible, trying to ram against the bulwarks. Instead they use the very weaknesses of the system to change it and steer it in a better direction.

              • Fred Magyar says:

                Instead they use the very weaknesses of the system to change it and steer it in a better direction.

                Yep! Sort of like the people starting small controlled avalanches in the snow covered mountains in the dead of night to prevent the sleeping village from being buried alive by a big one.

                There are a few eco ninja warriors out there doing their work unbeknownst to the majority. They usually act alone and take no credit for their work.


  8. Survivalist says:

    William P Hall (PhD)
    President, Kororoit Institute
    Evolutionary Biology of Species and Organisms
    Draft – 08-03-2017


    • Fred Magyar says:

      Scott Pruitt strongly disagrees!


      WASHINGTON — Scott Pruitt, the head of the Environmental Protection Agency, said on Thursday that carbon dioxide was not a primary contributor to global warming, a statement at odds with the established scientific consensus on climate change.

      Asked his views on the role of carbon dioxide, the heat-trapping gas produced by burning fossil fuels, in increasing global warming, Mr. Pruitt said on CNBC’s “Squawk Box” that “I think that measuring with precision human activity on the climate is something very challenging to do and there’s tremendous disagreement about the degree of impact, so, no, I would not agree that it’s a primary contributor to the global warming that we see.”

      “But we don’t know that yet,” he added. “We need to continue the debate and continue the review and the analysis.”

      Mr Pruitt is a danger to humanity and the planet!

      • GoneFishing says:

        Fred, this is one of those unexpected nonlinear results we are always talking about. Chaos slips in through the cracks in any system.
        Time to hit the trenches.

        • Fred Magyar says:

          I agree about the nonlinearity and chaos slipping in through the cracks of any system. Though I have to say, in Pruitt’s case it was almost too predictable and is basically just a swinging back of the pendulum. Still, a sad time for all of humanity and clear thinking rational people.

          • GoneFishing says:

            Two states of climate change action exist (at the federal level).
            1) recognition of global warming and climate change causes and a mediocre response due to low level of actual perceived danger
            2) purposeful lack of recognition of global warming and climate change causes and purposeful negative response since no danger is acknowledged and action will reduce profits of entrenched powerful corporations.

            Given those two states of action, neither state will produce effective actions. In fact it is more likely that action will enhance rather than reduce global warming and climate change.

        • Survivalist says:

          Trumpism is a crisis cult. America is collapsing. It’s par for the course. Basically industrial civilization is one big cargo cult and the magic of printing money and giving it to elites isn’t working anymore. Unfortunately nobody in power knows what else to do.

          • Survivalist, as hard as it is for me to say this, but I agree with you 100%.

            Unfortunately nobody in power knows what else to do.

            True, and nobody not in power knows what to do either. It is very likely that there is nothing that can be done. Everything is way too far out of control. There is just no fixing things.

            I have known for years that things would eventually collapse. I just hoped it would be further down the road, like 50 to 100 years or so. But it doesn’t look like that will be the case.

            Actually it is way too late for anyone to do anything. Nothing can be done. The world is already in deep, deep overshoot. The world population is already several times the long term carrying capacity. And we are fast approaching the short term carrying capacity. My guess is that would be about 7.5 billion people, give or take a quarter billion.

            • Hightrekker says:

              You mean to tell me just because we are in population overshoot, in a mass extinction, biophysical collapse, and runaway climate change that we can’t turn things around?
              Jesus and the Free Market, and its God Capital, should straighten things out foe The Believers.

              • GoneFishing says:

                “Jesus and the Free Market, and its God Capital, should straighten things out foe The Believers.”

                Strange how people believe in a system that attacks them, weakens them, and subjugates them. They believe in competition, where men and women turn against each other to achieve personal goals.

                • Survivalist says:

                  “The pillars of capitalism represent a belief system so ingrained in today’s culture that they form a sort of cargo cult amongst its adherents. Cargo cults are any of the various Melanesian religious groups which focused on obtaining material wealth(manufactured Western goods that came on cargo ships) through magical thinking, religious rituals and practices. Today the term “cargo cult” is used to describe a wide variety of phenomena that involve superficial imitation of a process or system in order to fabricate a successful outcome without even the basic understanding of its mechanism.”


              • Nathanael says:

                Eh, I now think we can turn things around enough to prevent the extinction of humanity. After a few billion die.

                As for the US, something called the US might exist, but the federal government as we know it walked right off the deep end and will suffer the fate of the USSR very soon. Well, we can hope the collapse is as orderly as the USSR was; it’ll probably be messier.

            • Paulo says:

              I am just re-reading JM Greer’s Dark Age America. Written before Trump, I am astounded at just how he has rung the bell. It is very interesting in light of today’s rabid calls for the repeal of the ACA and a reduction of medicaid for poor folks by people who are insider millionaires/billionaires who already sport a nifty little congressional health plan and a defined benefit pension; (as if they need either).

              When the desperate wake up to this latest wealth-robbing scam are they ever going to be pissed!! Plus, the relaxation of environmental regs and a speed up of new pharmacy products to go with ‘access’ to health insurance, man oh man it’ll be like going to a fall fair and watching a rube say, “Wait a minute, I thought…..”

          • alimbiquated says:

            #MAGA seems to me to be a low budget rerun of the neocon dream of The American Century.

            Bush I’s “new world order” remark didn’t offer any guarantees that America was #1. So the neocons cooked up “American Exceptionalism” based on some reruns of reruns of heroic WWII movies. Bold action would re-establish American supremacy.

            Killing Saddam was a multi-trillion dollar attempt to make America relevant again #MARA. In the event it showed the limits of American military power — half the world’s military expenditure weren’t enough to pacify 0.5% of the world’s populace.

            Building a wall on the border to Mexico represents a massive retrenchment of American ambition. The Muslim travel ban seems like a symbolic abandonment of American meddling in the Mideast. That probably makes sense, but what other foreign policy ideas do Americans actually have?

  9. Oldfarmermac says:


    That’s some heavy duty talk, but I have grown accustomed to believing Musk won’t say it unless he really believes he can do it.

    The weasel words are probably the ones involving the time starting after signing the proposed contract.

    I guess any fair sized electrical contracting company could handle the actual installation of such a battery farm.

    What I’m wondering how long it will be before Tesla or any other company can deliver such a big order on short notice.

    I see that some former Tesla exec’s have launched a company to build a super sized battery factory of their very own some place in Europe in the very near future. They are former top shelf Tesla guys, and know how to giterdone, if they can get the necessary financing.

    • GoneFishing says:

      From what I have read, South Australia limits residential PV to 5 KW systems so the homes are often still dependent upon the grid system and are not a great producer of power. In that case it would be a no brainer to start the fix.

    • Nathanael says:

      Tesla can most certainly manufacture enough product (I’ve been following their factory construction); I do wonder how they can *ship* it from the US to Australia.

  10. Oldfarmermac says:

    Here’s another thing I am not finding much on, but it seems to me that it will prove to be entirely practical before too much longer to install large personal pv systems and batteries up north, and run on the sun during the sunny months, and then run a small generator set to charge the batteries during long cold winter nights since heat will be necessary anyway, and it’s technically easy to capture nearly all the otherwise wasted heat from a small IC engine for space heating.

    Such a system, well designed, should be considerably more fuel efficient than a centrally located ff power plant.A grid connection would probably still be necessary, but the homeowner could get by with very little purchased electricity, and with net metering, could come out smelling like a rose.

    It might even be possibly for rural guys like me to run such a generator using a very small old time piston steam engine since we have wood out the ying yang anyway,at times when we need space heating.The low efficiency of such a steam engine wouldn’t matter at all, if the waste heat is needed for space heating.

    • wehappyfew says:

      Agreed… if you’ve got plenty of wood, and you’re going to burn it for heat anyway, why not capture some of that high-temp exergy and convert it to electricity?

      Here’s an expensive (expensive per Watt of output), but dead simple, one moving part generator:


      With the cooling water pumped to remote parts of the house to a radiator or in-floor hydronic system, the wood heat disadvantage of “too hot near stove – too cold everywhere else” is reduced or eliminated. A greenhouse would also be a nice way to use up the rejected heat.

      Efficiency is low, as you’d expect … ~5% …

      …but 5% of nearly free fuel is better than 20% of diesel you have to pay for.

      The problems appear when everybody does it. Tragedy of the Commons… wood (and diesel) make lots of particulate pollution.

      • Oldfarmermac says:

        Yes, particulates are a problem.

        But with stationary installations, capturing particulates is not all that hard.

        And they aren’t likely to reach high enough concentrations to be a public health problem except in urban areas, so far as modern properly installed wood stoves are concerned.

      • Paulo says:

        I just use a big ole slow turning fan I paid $79.00 for. It has a 4′ diameter. It moves the air around quite nicely. My water jacket and bronze pre-heat water tank is an awesome mass storage unit. It is still quite warm in the morning.

        Yesterday, I ran into an old co-worker. She told me her last 2 month hydro bill was $700. (Very cold winter). Ours, was around $110 and that also runs my shop tools and occasional welder.

        Of course our wood is virtually free except for the work cutting. Thinking about it, if I save $2,000/year heating with wood that works out to about $400/day wage, clear. Plus, it is a very nice workout. 🙂

    • HVACman says:

      OFM – it’s called “cogeneration”, also called CHP (combined heat and power). Been around a few generations or so. Very popular among the industrial types who need both heat and power and may have burnable waste products, like breweries, sawmills, paper mills, etc.


      For home-sized plants, see micro-CHP


      • islandboy says:

        Do you think the following is a good idea? See the comment posted under the name “Peak Oiler” in the comments section.

        UWI to leave JPS grid next year

        In another major cost-saving venture, the Mona campus of the University of the West Indies (UWI) has said that by next year, it will come off the grid of the Jamaica Public Service (JPS), the island’s sole power distributor.

        The university recently approved a contract to complete the building of a cogeneration plant.

        “At the moment, we’re paying JPS US19 cents per kilowatt-hour (kWh). Once we get off the grid, which we expect to do within the next year, that cost will fall to US 12 cents per kWh,” said principal Professor Archibald McDonald at a press briefing on Monday after presenting the campus’ report for the 2015/2016 academic year to the council.

        “The company that we are partnering with is Wartsila out of Finland. Wartsila will operate the plant and train the School of Engineering to take over the management of the plant. When that is done, the cost will be decreased by another three cents, so we’ll be producing energy at the cost of about 8-9 cents kWh.”

        In early February, I had cause to attend the university’s Research Days, an event where they showcase the research being done at the institution with a view to attracting students and probably most importantly, funding. Most of the displays were in a huge tent (probably about 120 x 60 ft.) surrounded by twelve 290,000 btu. mobile air conditioning units, powered by a big diesel generator. When I asked why they were using a generator instead of utility power they said the additional power which was only going to be used for a few days would result in an unacceptable increase in the demand charges on the university’s electricity bill. Aside from that, air conditioning must be a major component of their energy bill with hundreds of mini splits all over the campus in addition to some central units.

  11. Oldfarmermac says:


    This is a potential game changer sure enough if it can be scaled up.

  12. Oldfarmermac says:


    I’m all for properly designing buildings from the beginning, but I’m wondering about politics and righteous indignation versus good common sense.

    How much will it cost to retrofit this stadium, to save probably less than a thousand birds a year?

    And how big a piece of critical bird habitat could be bought and put into a city, state or federal park system forever, for that much money?????

    • Nick G says:

      Heck, put the same money into reducing populations of feral cats, and you’d probably get 100x the ROI.

      Bird Return on Investment (BROI)?

      • Hightrekker says:

        And ban glass windows.

        • GoneFishing says:

          Sure, make windows soft and flexible so they gently catch the birds to prevent injury. Or maybe put airbags on windows that activate as they sense approaching flying objects. Save the window, save the bird.

          • Fred Magyar says:

            There are plenty of solutions out there already…


            Truth is, most people just don’t really give a shit about millions of birds being killed by windows every year, except when it is politically expedient to complain about wind turbines killing a couple of eagles here and there.

            • GoneFishing says:

              “Truth is, most people just don’t really give a shit about millions of birds being killed by windows every year …”

              I have never had millions of birds hit my windows. 🙂
              Maybe three or four in all the time I have been around and have not found any dead below the windows or nearby. Only evidence was some down stuck to the glass. In fact the one bad strike was caused by a Cooper’s Hawk trying to get a Blue Jay. The jay dove for the window and broke it, the hawk zoomed up over the roof. The jay flew away.

              If we got rid of high rises and tall buildings, there wouldn’t be much of a problem.

              As far as eagles go, the bald eagles in my area produce about 2 to 4 viable young each year per pair of adults. One would think the population would double almost every year. Instead it is rising at about a 5% rate. Most eagle deaths are among the younger eagles that cannot make it through their first winter or two, they starve. Of course there is lead poisoning, pesticide poisoning, electrocution, gun shots, other eagles and accidents to round out the list of causes. Since there are few wind turbines in the regions assessed, it’s not them.

              • Nathanael says:

                Old-style high rises are fine, it’s those glass-clad skyscrapers which are the real problem.

      • Oldfarmermac says:

        I agree one hundred percent about the cats, except that there aren’t really that many FERAL cats out there. Most of them are free roaming pets.

        In any case, when it comes to solving any sort of public problem, it just makes basic common sense to spend limited funds in the ways that reap the greatest returns.

        And while I don’t consider myself much of an architectural critic, that stadium is so ugly only its mother could possibly think it’s beautiful.

        It has been well known now for quite a long time that beauty is contained within certain basic parameters or frameworks, or than proportions must fall within certain ratios, in order for things to be perceived as beautiful.

        All it takes for paint splashes to be called great art is that one or two top of the heap critics say so. I bet I could substitute any sort of junk for some I have seen, and so long as the people in line to look had not seen a picture of the original, they would ooh and aah over it.

  13. Hightrekker says:

    It’s fun to live in a time where “military grade encryption” is not as good as normal encryption

  14. Hightrekker says:

    “Why do working-class Bush voters tend to resent intellectuals more than they do the rich?” David Graeber asked in 2007. “It seems to me the answer is simple. They can imagine a scenario in which they might become rich but cannot possibly imagine one in which they, or any of their children, would become members of the intelligentsia.”

    For if you’re not a part of the intelligentsia, well, how can you possibly make the world better for your existence in it? This frustration, however, is precisely what makes perfectly decent people, whose only sin is that a self-arrogated cognitive elite doesn’t consider them particularly useful, such easy pickings for political con men who assure them that they’re actually the smart ones. And that, all in all, is not very smart.

    • Nick G says:

      The answer is easy: Fox and Newcorp media aggressively tell them that they should feel that way.

      That helps these yellow journalists convince people that media and government knowledge workers are bad people, and helps the Kochs and their ilk suppress democracy.

      • Oldfarmermac says:

        Tens of millions of people HAVE moved up in the world playing by the old conservative cultural rule book, including most of my own family over the last three generations.

        So far we have spawned only a few of my acquaintance that can be considered rich by modern standards, using an arbitrary figure of say ten million net worth.

        But whereas we were all pretty much dirt poor less than a century ago, although independent and self supporting for the most part, and not wage slaves, now there is a very substantial proportion of professors, lawyers, computer programmers, doctors, accountants, and owners of businesses of various sorts.

        It’s true that there are also quite a few remaining who have remained at or very near the bottom of the economic ladder. Roughly half of the ones who are younger and still at or very near the bottom really don’t have anybody except themselves to blame for their problems. Bad habits and bad decisions are the source of their problems.

        But it’s also incontestably true that maybe a quarter of us have played by the rules, and still come out losers. Some lost out because they were in industries that were off shored, or became obsolete, some lost due to health issues not directly related to bad habits such as drinking and smoking, some because they are simply STUPID, some because they made conscious decisions to live for the day instead of the long term.

        My Dad for instance never spent a dime on a flashy car or truck. He bough four new ones, but he drove them until they were worn out, and invested the difference in his business, and in raising his family.

        Now it may come as a major earthshaking paradigm busting SURPRISE to people who go around knocking religion in general, and fundamentalist Christians in particular, but most of the Sunday School lessson a kid will hear in a Baptist church are NOT about Creation, or whales spitting up living men swallowed whole, or rising from the dead. That’s the framework on which the day to day stuff is hung like clothes on a mannequin in a store, but the clothes and the lessons are the real stuff.

        The vast majority of the teachings are about living well, and wisely.

        Believe it or not, I know most of you guys who THINK you know shit from apple butter have near zero contact with what it is you so freely criticize, and are thus excused on the grounds of ignorance.

        We have a lot of people here who obviously understand the basics of biology, but they have entirely FORGOTTEN what biologists, sociologists, historians, anthrologists, etc, have to tell us about the REAL ROLE religions have played all thru history in helping people survive and thrive in the face of adversity and competition from other groups of people.

        None of this is to say that religions in general and fundamentalist Christians in particular don’t have their problems associated with their beliefs, but it is simply awesomely STUPID for a person who is well versed in the sciences to criticize religion as if it has no survival value, etc.

        And it is BEYOND awesomely stupid to repeatedly and publicly make fun of such people, and THEN wonder why they vote for people such as Trump.

        I sort of hesitate to call the audience here as a whole stupid, conceited, condescending, etc, but hey guys, if you are CAPABLE of thinking just a LITTLE outside your comfy self satisfied smug intellectual boxes, consider this possibility.

        The people who put Trump in office weren’t especially interested in Trump himself.

        They were voting against you, because they correctly, from their position, consider you their enemy when it comes to the way they want to live.

        Now if you are willing to wise up a little, then you can change the way you talk about them, and to them, and they will for the most part very gladly meet you in the middle, but so long as you talk about them like dirt, and to them as if they are idiots, well,……. you can EXPECT them to vote for whoever is running against you.

        You have allowed such goddamned idiotic memes take control of your thinking that you are light years from appreciating the actual reality of what is said and done in churches these days, and have allowed the folks most opposed to religion to seek out the worst outlier examples and convince you they are typical serious Christians.

        Well, I have been in and out of various fundamentalist and evangelical type churches on a fairly frequent basis for the last half century plus as an adult, and I can tell you this with a perfectly straight face.

        There aren’t any preachers AT ALL in my neck of the woods who attack the teaching of evolution. They have better sense, since the large majority of their congregations, even though they may lack much in the way of education, are VERY PROUD of the fact that they have or know neighbors kids and grandkids at places such as Wake Forest and Duke majoring in pre med, or already in med school.

        They are getting organ transplants, and they can remember their great grand parents hearing preachers say that if God had intended men to fly, he would have given them wings, etc.

        They have televisions, and have had televisions, since the early fifties, and they believe in deep time, and dinosaurs, and a round earth, and quite a lot of them have LITERALLY seen elephants, etc.,

        Every hillbilly farmer I know believes in evolution, having seen it working, but he almost certain to deny this belief, if you confront his CULTURE directly. But ask him what a nectarine is, or how it is that Great Danes and pocket doggies exist,today, but not a century or two ago, and he tell you in accurate terms.

        Now here is the QUESTION.

        Do you prefer to go around feeling righteous and superior and smug, and bask in your display of right and proper membership in good standing in the intellectual elite, or do you prefer to win elections, and maybe actually prevent the economic and ecological collapse we talk about so much and so often here in this forum?

        Ya got a choice to make.

        Unfortunately I don’t think most of you are ever going to get it, because you don’t want to consider the possibility you have been making a dead serious mistake in terms of winning the REAL war – not the culture war, but the environmental war.

        You don’t win wars by invading a culture, and pissing and shitting all over the things held sacred or held to be of value by the local people. You understand that, and know are quick to say so, in explaining why it’s so hard or impossible for a country such as the USA to pacify a country such as Iraq, lol.

        Just about everything that REALLY matters in terms of solving our environmental problems, and probably most of our economic problems as well, can potentially be negotiated successfully with the culturally conservative working people and the rural people of this country if you approach them respectfully and with an open mind.

        Otherwise………… Well maybe in another generation or so demographics will win out, and enough of them will be gone, recycled, DEAD.

        OR….. maybe if you handle it wrong, the younger ones will be permanently alienated and radicalized…….

        ONE thing even stupid people eventually come to understand, eventually, most of the time is that you have some or a lot of control over your own side, your friends and allies, when it comes to winning elections, setting policies, etc.

        You are never going to have control of the other side.

        But you can potentially convert the other side into friends or at least neutrals if you use the brains you are so proud of.

        If the worst offenders here talked to girls or women the way they talk to or about conservatives and religious people and rural people, the closest they would ever get to a sex life would be masturbation.

        Now I will get down off my soapbox, and put on my asbestos and leather welder’s suit,and enjoy the flames, it’s chilly here today, lol.

        Seriously folks, anybody who is stupid enough that he NEEDS to read a book such as How To Win Friends and Influence People is basically just socially retarded to begin with.

        But there is hope.

        When adults lose, they look to their own mistakes, rather than blaming their losses on the opposition, because when the opposition wins, it’s usually in large part by capitalizing on the home team’s mistakes.

        I look forward to HB telling everybody how I hate Hillary again. He’s a perfect example of an intellectually blind partisan.

        • Oldfarmermac says:

          Since the above long comment was an off the cuff rant, I forgot to include an example of a really typical Sunday school lesson as taught in the church where my folks are buried. It has to do with setting aside food for bad years, because there will be good years and bad years, and if you piss your income away during the good years, when the bad years come……

          The modern version, updated, is taught using savings accounts, owning a washing machine as opposed to using the laundromat, driving a modest car if you must drive, rather than a show boat, etc.

          Another involves helping out the less fortunate among us, etc. Believe in or not, even hillbilly Baptists are big on charity.

          Such lessons take about forty out of the fifty two in a year in the church I know best. The rest are about cultural solidarity, taught by way of dogma, etc.

          Approach any member of this church respectfully, and he or she will listen carefully and respectfully to an explanation of the need for strong environmental laws, etc.

          Winning him or her over is no problem, on the environmental issues. The problem is that you need to back off on the culture war if you want his or her vote.

          There are ENOUGH such people you NEED them to win. They may die out, eventually. I believe they will. But they MIGHT NOT. They might get to be more numerous than ever.

          • HuntingtonBeach says:

            “But it’s also incontestably true that maybe a quarter of us have played by the rules, and still come out losers. Some lost out because they were in industries that were off shored, or became obsolete, some lost due to health issues not directly related to bad habits such as drinking and smoking, some because they are simply STUPID, some because they made conscious decisions to live for the day instead of the long term.”

            OldMacDonald aka KGB, welcome to capitalism. Where not everyone wins. Just another reason to have programs like the ACA to help level the playing field for those who come in second place. One reason I never condemn welfare or a little redistribution of wealth.

            “The problem is that you need to back off on the culture war if you want his or her vote”

            I agree, if only those “sky daddy” believers would stop knocking on my front door and stop trying to convert me.

            “I look forward to HB telling everybody how I hate Hillary again”

            No need too, you do a very good job of it yourself. Now go face the comments at the top of the page.

          • GoneFishing says:

            We build an artificial system where the food sources, land and other resources are held behind guns and then people wonder how some people don’t do very well in this made-up system of power and rules. Now that is about as stupid as it gets.

            • HuntingtonBeach says:

              It’s not an “artificial system”. It’s very real. I think it’s pretty much a natural evolved human system of greed, fear and survival. At the current population and history, the days of homesteading virgin land is over. You are born into a class system and few have the ability or opportunity to change their status.

              • GoneFishing says:

                HB said “It’s not an “artificial system”. It’s very real.”
                Artificial does not mean unreal.

                artificial ; made or produced by human beings rather than occurring naturally

                I was not born into a class system, I was born into an economic system. The difference between me being rich and poor simply comes down to a few economic decisions, not class limited.

                • HuntingtonBeach says:

                  “I was not born into a class system”

                  Social class (or, simply, class), as in class society, is a set of concepts in the social sciences and political theory centered on models of social stratification in which people are grouped into a set of hierarchical social categories, the most common being the upper, middle, and lower classes.

                  Class is an essential object of analysis for sociologists, political scientists, anthropologists, and social historians. However, there is not a consensus on the best definition of the “class”, and the term has different contextual meanings. In common parlance, the term “social class” is usually synonymous with “socio-economic class”, defined as “people having the same social, economic, or educational status”, e.g., “the working class”; “an emerging professional class”. However, academics distinguish social class and socioeconomic status, with the former referring to one’s relatively stable sociocultural background and the latter referring to one’s current social and economic situation and, consequently, being more changeable over time. The precise measurements of what determines social class in society has varied over time.

                  According to philosopher Karl Marx, “class” is determined entirely by one’s relationship to the means of production (their relations of production). The classes in modern capitalist society, according to Marx, are the proletariat, those who work but do not own the means of production; and the bourgeoisie, those who invest and live off of the surplus generated by the former. This contrasts with the view of the sociologist Max Weber, who argued “class” is determined by economic position, in contrast to “social status” or “Stand” which is determined by social prestige rather than simply just relations of production.


        • Nick G says:


          You’ve said that you’d like to write a book.


          Writing a good book requires good writing, especially good organization so that people can read it easily (you can see a modest example in my last comment in the “Bakken January Production Data” post – note the numbering of topics, and how the whole comment relates to the general topic introduced at the beginning, and then re-stated at the end).

          Why not practice good writing, instead of long rants (your word)?

        • Hightrekker says:

          The Pre-Populist Right

          Before the noticeable turn among Trump supporters toward populist ordinary-guy rhetoric—at times they started to sound like rousing orators of the kind of trade unions they’ve spent decades trying to smash—their sloganeering was often openly elitist. Prior to landing a six-figure book contract as a Trump evangelist and professional right-wing gay guy, Milo Yiannopoulos relished posing for photos while modeling a T-shirt that read “STOP BEING POOR.” And tireless right-wing provocateur Ann Coulter—an erstwhile outsider who likewise now finds herself awkwardly aligned with the new mainstream of conservative opinion—has long drawn upon the pernicious elite tradition of privileged contempt for the mob. In particular, she updates a variety of moral panic that has characterized her class since the emergence of modernity: fear of the overcrowding, overbreeding, emotionally volatile, easily cowed mass of humanity.

          The longer you look at all the forces of reaction marshaled behind the billionaire president, the more opportunistic his populist turn seems.

          In her 2011 book Demonic, which explained how “the liberal mob is endangering America,” Coulter praised the work of Gustave Le Bon, the first Frenchman to set about measuring the craniums of Nepalese peasants in an effort to lend pseudoscientific credence to elite European imperialist and economic projects. Le Bon’s influential 1895 book The Crowd drew admiring praise from Hitler and has been a reliable touchstone for misanthropes and eugenicists since. In fact, the whole anti-immigration discourse, marked recently by Trump’s “build the wall” rallying cry, is steeped in the legacy of Le Bon and those who have always feared the teeming masses and the great unwashed, whether foreign or homegrown. Their alarmist outcries were typically first deployed upon the toiling white masses within Western societies, and then would find a new subject in new foreign ethnic minorities.

          In both settings, the rhetoric is remarkably consistent: There are too many of them. They breed too much. They’ll swamp our limited resources. There isn’t enough room. They’ll destroy and vulgarize our culture. But what’s striking in our own new political order is how ideologically fungible such sentiments are becoming before our eyes. Put another way: if Hillary had won—or Brexit had been resoundingly voted down—we would be hearing more populism from the liberals and more misanthropy from the right.

          More confusing still, in the web-native invective of the overtly white-separatist subculture of the new online right—the self-styled “alt-right”—anyone who does not carry into adulthood the strangely adolescent impulse to distinguish herself from the hated mainstream of society is derisively called a Normie or a Basic Bitch, as though white separatism were an obscure punk genre. A common thread of masses-deriding misanthropy runs through the writing and rhetoric of the online white-nationalist right. Indeed, the longer you look at all the forces of reaction marshaled behind the billionaire president, the more opportunistic his populist turn seems.

        • Nathanael says:

          I’m afraid I’m not politic. I’m blunt.

          And I’ve seen churches teach an insane amount of destructive bull to people. Really bad stuff. Stuff with negative survival value.

          Sure, some teach good stuff. But a lot *don’t*.

          A lot teach “prayer” as a substitute for thought, “obedience” as a substitute for, uh, thought, “obedience” as a substitute for compassion, self-hatred as a habit, and giving to the church as a substitute for actual charity. Now I know why that happens; it profits the church to mess people up like this! It’s just standard cult brainwashing. But I don’t know how to get people out who’ve been brainwashed by that stuff, and I suspect they can only escape when they want to. The best I can do is feel sorry for them, and it is very hard to avoid having contempt for people who are brainwashed like that.

          When I’ve known people like this personally, I’ve just had to acerbically tell them that their religion is simply wrong on the facts, and provide evidence. Over and over again. Until they either make the choice to follow the facts (and usually find a different church) — which takes years — or they decide to retreat into delusion. I don’t know another tactic which ever works, and I’ve tried a lot. I just keep repeating the facts.

          These are churches which actively fight the “culture war” from the pulpit weekly. They’re the aggressors and we are not about to back off when they attack us. I dropped one of the facts I usually use to anti-abortion extremists in an earlier comment; it really should give pause to anyone who believes the nonsense spread by their church.

          The Catholic Church invented their anti-abortion doctrine in the 19th century. Most of the Protestant right-wing groups only started doing it in the 1980s at the behest of a short list of televangelists who were specifically using it to round up votes for Republicans, and this corrupt little horror show of history is actually well documented.

          I don’t know how to deal with people who’ve been brainwashed by corrupt, dishonest political operatives who are ministers. Elmer Gantry types. I do know that “backing off on the culture wars” is dead wrong when dealing with people who’ve been brainwashed. That lets the Elmer Gantry types win, which is unacceptable.

          I do try never to mock people. I cannot avoid showing some mild contempt for people who’ve let themselves be brainwashed by dishonest talking points. Perhaps embarassment at being conned is the only thing which will get them to break out of the brainwashing. Certainly, trying to validate their beliefs is counterproductive.

  15. George Kaplan says:

    Another study addressing some of the gaps and uncertainties in temperature measurements and concluding that there was no hiatus, and actual heat gain has been increasing:

    “Our studies show that there has been no slowdown in global OHC change since 1998 compared with the previous decade (Fig. 5): There is an acceleration of ocean warming (for both OHC 0 to 700 m and OHC 0 to 2000 m), consistent with a previous study based on model-based data assimilation (3). Moreover, the percentage of 700- to 2000-m ocean heating relative to 0- to 2000-m OHC is 32% (32%) for 1960–1998 (1960–2005), but 38% (49%) for 1998–2015 (2005–2015), indicating that the deep ocean has played an increasingly important role in the ocean energy budget since 1998. ”


  16. Doug Leighton says:

    Welcome to the future folks,



  17. wharf rat says:

    Elon Musk Accepts Challenge To Install 100 MWh Tesla Powerpack System In 100 Days Or Its Free

    Not quite; Oz guy said, “Give me a week to get it together.”

  18. wharf rat says:


  19. Hightrekker says:

    Reality starting to sink in?

    Atlanta Fed GDPNow Forecast Spirals Down in Amazing Manner
    by Wolf Richter • Mar 8, 2017

    Where has all the optimism gone?

    The Atlanta Fed’s GDPNow model, which forecasts GDP growth in the US in the current quarter, picks up data as it is released and changes the forecast in real time. As the quarter advances and as more data is included, it becomes a more accurate predictor, not of actual economic growth, but of GDP as measured in the first estimate for that quarter by the Bureau of Economic Analysis (BEA). So now we’re 67 days into the first quarter, and the GDPNow forecast has been spiraling down in an amazing manner for the past nine days.

    The model now forecasts GDP growth in Q1 of 1.2% seasonally adjusted annual rate. This means that if the economy continues to grow at this rate for the rest of the year, annual GDP growth would be 1.2%, which would be the worst since the Financial Crisis.


  20. George Kaplan says:



    “Carbon dioxide levels measured at NOAA’s Mauna Loa Baseline Atmospheric Observatory rose by 3 parts per million to 405.1 parts per million (ppm) in 2016, an increase that matched the record jump observed in 2015. The two-year, 6-ppm surge in the greenhouse gas between 2015 and 2017 is unprecedented in the observatory’s 59-year record. And, it was a record fifth consecutive year that carbon dioxide (CO2) rose by 2 ppm or greater, … ”

    Despite the flattening of fossil fuel emissions it looks likely we will meet or exceed RCP8.5 for mid year CO2 levels for the first time since it was developed (wildfires, permafrost, lower efficiency soil and ocean sinks as possible causes – their still doesn’t appear to be a consensus). If there is an El Nino in July the rate might increase more.

    I’ve been trying to find something on aerosol changes given China’s supposed initiative to clean up the coal power station emissions, but haven’t so far. If they succeed I understand there’d be a step increase in net energy imbalance to the Earth over a couple of years.

    • Doug Leighton says:



      “If our findings are applied to soils around the globe that are similar to what we studied, meaning soils that are not frozen or saturated, our calculations suggest that by 2100 the warming of deeper soil layers could cause a release of carbon to the atmosphere at a rate that is significantly higher than today, perhaps even as high as 30 percent of today’s human-caused annual carbon emissions depending on the assumptions on which the estimate is based…

      There’s an assumption carbon in the subsoil is more stable and not as responsive to warming as in the topsoil, but we’ve learned that’s not the case. Deeper soil layers contain a lot of carbon, and our work indicates it’s a key missing component in our understanding of the potential feedback of soils to the planet’s climate.” BERKELEY LAB’S CLIMATE AND ECOSYSTEM SCIENCES DIVISION


      • Fred Magyar says:

        It is precisely because of the high likelihood of feedback mechanisms such as these, that I think an RCP 8.5 scenario to be overly conservative, even if we should stop all CO2 emissions today. I also think that no politician should be allowed to even run for congress or the senate, let alone the presidency, without first demonstrating a firm grasp of at least basic college level math, physics, and chemistry. Knowledge of biology and ecosystems would be a bonus… No, I’m not holding my breath!

        • Duncan Idaho says:

          A least a rudimentary knowledge of Thermodynamics an evolutionary biology.

        • Doug Leighton says:

          Crikey mate! RCP 8.5 = conservative? Then we REALLY are in trouble. You realize a RCP 8.5 storyline describes a heterogeneous world with continuously increasing global population resulting in a global population of 12 billion by 2100 — among other disasters? Maybe ants and spiders will be OK.


          • Fred Magyar says:

            Crikey mate! RCP 8.5 = conservative?

            At least with regards the atmospheric CO2 and other GHG concentrations and their effects on global warming, sea level rise and ocean acidification. The more I look into possible feedbacks and tipping points The less likely I think that even the immediate ending of all burning of fossil fuels will keep us below even an RCP 4.5 scenario by the end of the 2100.

            As for human population I also believe that all of the above will probably keep that in check and I highly doubt we will be able to provide food for that many humans. So I don’t think we will see 12 billion humans by 2100. Of course that doesn’t mean I don’t think we are seriously fucked!

            Lest we forget:


            The last time there was this much carbon dioxide (CO2) in the Earth’s atmosphere, modern humans didn’t exist. Megatoothed sharks prowled the oceans, the world’s seas were up to 100 feet higher than they are today, and the global average surface temperature was up to 11°F warmer than it is now.

            And nature had a few million years to adapt to that level of change. We are now accomplishing a similar change in just few centuries.

            So yes, I do think barring some miracle, an RCP 8.5 scenario is quite conservative. Some ants and spiders might be OK! Though I’m betting on giant jellyfish.

            Note to climate change denialist trolls: Don’t bother with stupid comments about how temperatures aren’t yet a full degree centigrade above pre-industrial baseline or that sea level rise is still so slight despite 400 plus ppm of CO2. As I just mentioned the last time we were at that point it took a few million years to get there…there is a lag time. Keep watching!

            It’s just as dumb as asking if humans descended from apes, why are there still apes…

            • Doug Leighton says:

              As usual I agree. Now all we have to do is wait for the usual shit from Javier to straighten us all out.

              • Fred Magyar says:

                Yeah, sigh!

                • GoneFishing says:

                  The scary and sad part is all the people running around as if nothing is really happening.
                  The talk of economic growth and future prosperity is so detached from reality that I find it difficult to pay attention.
                  I know they don’t really know what is going on, that when they hear about the great predicaments (not often) it is just so much science fiction to many of them. Their blind faith in government is just not warranted by any reality that I know about.

                  Still, to have all those people get blindsided is just a shame and embarrassment for a civilization that is supposedly somewhat advanced.

                  • Fred Magyar says:

                    Still, to have all those people get blindsided is just a shame and embarrassment for a civilization that is supposedly somewhat advanced.

                    Alien Attack Cold Open – SNL

                    Well, I can only imagine what happens when the Aliens finally meet our fearless great leader and just keel over and die laughing…

                  • GoneFishing says:

                    Hey, everybody makes mistakes.

                  • HuntingtonBeach says:

                    Yes, but Republicans keep putting their finger in the light socket

        • GoneFishing says:
          • Fred Magyar says:


            Improved estimates of ocean heat content from 1960 to 2015

            Earth’s energy imbalance (EEI) drives the ongoing global warming and can best be assessed across the historical record (that is, since 1960) from ocean heat content (OHC) changes. An accurate assessment of OHC is a challenge, mainly because of insufficient and irregular data coverage. We provide updated OHC estimates with the goal of minimizing associated sampling error. We performed a subsample test, in which subsets of data during the data-rich Argo era are colocated with locations of earlier ocean observations, to quantify this error. Our results provide a new OHC estimate with an unbiased mean sampling error and with variability on decadal and multidecadal time scales (signal) that can be reliably distinguished from sampling error (noise) with signal-to-noise ratios higher than 3. The inferred integrated EEI is greater than that reported in previous assessments and is consistent with a reconstruction of the radiative imbalance at the top of atmosphere starting in 1985. We found that changes in OHC are relatively small before about 1980; since then, OHC has increased fairly steadily and, since 1990, has increasingly involved deeper layers of the ocean. In addition, OHC changes in six major oceans are reliable on decadal time scales. All ocean basins examined have experienced significant warming since 1998, with the greatest warming in the southern oceans, the tropical/subtropical Pacific Ocean, and the tropical/subtropical Atlantic Ocean. This new look at OHC and EEI changes over time provides greater confidence than previously possible, and the data sets produced are a valuable resource for further study.

    • Survivalist says:

      Also perhaps of interest.
      This data set is globally averaged marine surface annual mean growth rates.
      It is from this page.

      I tend to think that a lot of carbon from thawing permafrost is going to rapidly enter the atmosphere. As this article states 300 billion tons. That alone will take us to over 520 ppm CO2.

      I believe that mass production of corn, wheat and soybean will be compromised by the impacts of alterations in the jet stream. A couple volatile years of food production and humanity will get thinned out pretty quick. Hobbesian scramble. Population bottleneck. That kinda thing.

      • Paul Helvik says:

        Or, as so often happens with initial predictions made under the influence of generalized anxiety disorders, everything could ultimately turn out to be just fine. Kind of like how ever since the meteorologists began opining about the jet stream acting squirrely, farmers in the Northern Plains have been able to continually achieve bigger and better harvests. Indeed, due to yet another bountiful, record-setting harvest last year, the region still has massive amounts of wheat sitting in storage or on the ground due to a lack of sufficient rail transportation to export terminals primarily in the Pacific Northwest.

    • Max Gervis says:

      Has it gotten warmer now, or within the last 19 years? Well, doesn’t really seem like it from what I can tell here in Western Ohio. Although I guess the bigger question is, can anybody use the atmospheric CO2 concentration to determine any warming or cooling? Well, from all I have been reading, the answer is no, at least not reliably. I guess it’s similar to how the scientists who assure us they know it all explain to us that climate change can be inferred from sea surface temperatures. Another fallacy. Sea surface temperatures measure the effect of major tropical storms. So, if you get more storms, the globe cools due to the storms bringing cold water up to the surface. If you get fewer, weaker storms than expected (as has been the case for the past several years), temperatures are warmer. The Gulf of Mexico, for example,. has gotten much warmer because of the lack of major storms. Yet 100 ft below the surface, temperature have been dropping like a stone. If and when we get some “big ones” out there on the seas, temperatures will head down again.

      Now, to another point, had the planet been warming up before 1998. Absolutely, yes, but was the warming due to human activities? The scientists are unable to answer that with any certainty, and now they won’t even allow debate on the matter. Why couldn’t it have been all from natural causes? The answer appears to lie in the political minds of men. If the warming was all natural, then politicians couldn’t possibly get away with taxing CO2 emissions or implementing new rules and regulations that stifle individual liberty. If the warming is all man-made, then the politicians and special interest elites of the world could justify their actions by saying they have to do it to help save civilization. I think the end result is that simply dealing with the issue of the climate warming would make some sense, but attempting to blame individuals for the warming does not.

      At this point, it should be noted that people who say climate change might not be entirely caused by humans is labeled as a quack, or worse. In order to be a “real” scientist nowadays, you have to fall in line with the consensus, which says that humans are to blame for it. Well, in my view, whenever you see people attacked for their own opinions, that is one sure fire way to tell that something must be more about politics than pure science.

      Let’s consider this proposal for a minute. Suppose tomorrow we could completely end all CO2 emissions by putting in a huge number of nuclear power plants and running everything off of batteries and electricity. Would all of that solve the climate change issue. The less scientifically literate might think so, but the more aware would realize it would make things worse. Nuclear and electricity might not produce CO2, but they dump heat into the atmosphere, so that would have a bigger direct effect.

      From a personal point-of-view, I believe our dependence on burning fuel is foolish, no matter if it might be causing warming, cooling, or having no impact. However, CO2 is obviously going to keep increasing for centuries anyway, what with more people, more cars, more factories, more consumption, more people breathing, and so on. One day this will possibly all end in an ugly way, as we do not have an endless supply. So, one day, in fact, we are probably going to be begging for all the CO2 we can get our hands on, so that we can ward off the next Ice Age.

      • Fred Magyar says:

        Bro, your entire post is just so chock full of blatant falsehoods, outright lies, ignorant assertions, logical fallacies and it has more strawmen in it than a corn field full of scarecrows, that to correct and dispel all of them would probably take as long as it takes the average person to go from kindergarten to completing a university degree!

        No one here has the time to give you an education and you are obviously not the least bit interested in educating yourself. Though, trust me, should you wish to do so, all the information is out there. However, your mind is more tightly sealed than a scallop, being held by a hungry octopus, in one of its tentacles.


        Let’s just look at your opening paragraph:

        Has it gotten warmer now, or within the last 19 years? Well, doesn’t really seem like it from what I can tell here in Western Ohio. Although I guess the bigger question is, can anybody use the atmospheric CO2 concentration to determine any warming or cooling?

        The answers to both of your questions are absolutely without any shadow of a doubt, YES!

        What you, personally can or can not tell from being in Western Ohio, is completely irrelevant!

        I could give you a hundred links, scientific papers, titles to books, university lectures, Youtube videos, etc, etc… explaining why the answers are yes and why your personal observations are irrelevant but it wouldn’t matter one damn bit, because your mind, for whatever the reason is already made up and solidly sealed shut.

        As they say, a mind is terrible thing to waste. And your post is a glaring example of a totally wasted mind! How sad!

        • Nathanael says:

          It’s pretty bloody obvious that average temperatures are up in the last 19 years, and that CO2 concentration has raised temperatures; this is provable just from looking at temperature records and CO2 records, literally anywhere. But Mr. Gervis apparently would prefer to bury his head in the sand.

      • notanoilman says:

        Gish gallop?


    • Survivalist says:

      I’ve been trying to find good articles on aerosols too. Please post any here if you find.


  21. Fred Magyar says:

    I’ve been trying to find something on aerosol changes given China’s supposed initiative to clean up the coal power station emissions, but haven’t so far. If they succeed I understand there’d be a step increase in net energy imbalance to the Earth over a couple of years.

    Yep that seems to be a valid concern…


    Dimming the Sun homepage

    In the early 21st century, it’s become clear that air pollution can significantly reduce the amount of sunlight reaching Earth, lower temperatures, and mask the warming effects of greenhouse gases. Climate researcher James Hansen estimates that “global dimming” is cooling our planet by more than a degree Celsius (1.8°F) and fears that as we cut back on pollution, global warming may escalate to a point of no return.

    Also a pretty good paper on this subject.



    [1] There is increasing evidence that the amount of solar radiation incident at the Earth’s surface is not stable over the years but undergoes significant decadal variations. Here I review the evidence for these changes, their magnitude, their possible causes, their representation in climate models, and their potential implications for climate change. The various studies analyzing long-term records of surface radiation measurements suggest a widespread decrease in surface solar radiation between the 1950s and 1980s (“global dimming”), with a partial recovery more recently at many locations (“brightening”). There are also some indications for an “early brightening” in the first part of the 20th century. These variations are in line with independent long-term observations of sunshine duration, diurnal temperature range, pan evaporation, and, more recently, satellite-derived estimates, which add credibility to the existence of these changes and their larger-scale significance. Current climate models, in general, tend to simulate these decadal variations to a much lesser degree. The origins of these variations are internal to the Earth’s atmosphere and not externally forced by the Sun. Variations are not only found under cloudy but also under cloud-free atmospheres, indicative of an anthropogenic contribution through changes in aerosol emissions governed by economic developments and air pollution regulations. The relative importance of aerosols, clouds, and aerosol-cloud interactions may differ depending on region and pollution level. Highlighted are further potential implications of dimming and brightening for climate change, which may affect global warming, the components and intensity of the hydrological cycle, the carbon cycle, and the cryosphere among other climate elements.

    • Gerry says:

      Plants grow better with more sunlight, you know. So this is good for agriculture. No worries.

      SCNR….Starting to get royally pissed about the “CO2 is not harmful” crowd….

      • Fred Magyar says:

        It might be of some concern to note that increases in CO2 concentration seems to negatively impact fungi. Fungi are an important component in the natural systems that recycle nutrients to plants. Without an adequate supply of nutrients, plants can not take advantage of increases in atmospheric CO2 concentrations… Just sayin!

        5 minutes on Google Scholar should bring up plenty of corroborating evidence… Yes, I checked!

        Not all conservatives are dumber than rocks but most people who are dumber than rocks are conservatives!

    • GoneFishing says:

      One of the problems with measuring global dimming is a portion of it occurs over the ocean where surface measurements are not obtained.
      Photosynthetic compounds absorb primarily in the 350 to 550 nm range of the electromagnetic spectrum, also some around 700 nm. Aerosols tend to block the shorter wavelengths most strongly. So yes, when aerosols are reduced, photosynthesis will be enhanced.
      The question remains though concerning heat and evaporation stresses. They both reduce plant growth.

      • Fred Magyar says:

        Photosynthetic compounds absorb primarily in the 350 to 550 nm range of the electromagnetic spectrum, also some around 700 nm.

        Which is why I’ve always thought calling environmentalists, ‘greenies‘ was a really bad choice… 😉

    • GoneFishing says:

      Doesn’t anyone wonder why it’s always “decadal variations” in who knows how many weather related studies. Does the solar system have ten fingers or is somebody just trying to fit things into our number system?

  22. Hightrekker says:

    (I don’t know campers, but is reality finally catching up to the ponzi?)
    Asia Inc. stumbles through two years of profit shrinkage

    First double dip since 1997 financial crisis puts resilience to the test


  23. Hightrekker says:

    Great is the power of parsimony.


  24. Survivalist says:

    Human and nature dynamics (HANDY): Modeling inequality and use of resources in the collapse or sustainability of societies


  25. Doug Leighton says:


    “If we don’t meet the high-levels of Carbon Capture and Storage as indicated in the scenarios that achieve the 2°C target at lowest cost, then we need to burn less fossil fuels in the near term. We currently don’t see sufficient progress on Carbon Capture and Storage, or on reductions in fossil fuel consumption. We are already at a stage where we have effectively emitted too much carbon dioxide, and the only feasible pathway to keep temperatures below 2°C is to physically remove carbon from the atmosphere. Rapid and continued deployment of wind and solar is welcome, but the real challenge required is to develop technologies and behaviors that shift the entire global energy system to be carbon neutral by mid-century.”


    • CatMommie says:

      “Physically remove carbon from the atmosphere” is one of the geoengineering methods I have been thinking about for a while as a good solution to calm down the climate.

      For instance, our scientists tell us earth is like a giant greenhouse. If that is the case, we should look at developing a way to open up a panel or window in that greenhouse for a short time. That way we could drain out the extra CO2 and heat. Then close it up when the climate stabilizes again to an acceptable temperature.

      This sounds like a much better solution than spending all sorts of time and energy trying to change basic human behavior. Besides, there are many very intelligent people in Silicon Valley, on Wall Street, and elsewhere who I bet would love the opportunity to lend their talents to such a significant project.

  26. Doug Leighton says:


    “Globally, the greatest challenge for energy is going to be cooling. With growth of the middle class in India and China, there will be an associated demand for air conditioning. The UN Intergovernmental Panel on Climate Change suggest that by the middle of the present century, the demand for cooling will outstrip the demand for heating. It is estimated that by 2040, the world’s energy consumption will have increased by almost 50%.”


    • JN2 says:

      New rule. No aircon unless you power it with PV. Problem solved.

    • HVACman says:

      Ironically, many in the HVAC world are considering using CO2 as the new go-to refrigerant for a lot of cooling applications. Turns out it has one of the LOWEST GWP’s of the viable refrigerants. I think several manufacturers in Europe already have some CO2 refrigeration equipment out.


      • notanoilman says:


        Now, if they could build A/C plants that extracted their own CO2 from the atmosphere…


        • George Kaplan says:

          Global warming potential.

          Extracting low concentration components from a mixture is difficult, expensive and takes a lot of energy. I doubt if anyone is going to come up with a large scale method that is feasible. Even if using renewable energy sources the scale will be enormous to make any difference, it’s like the energy storage problem but multiplied by a couple of orders of magnitude.

          Nature does it quite well of course, but it’s on an enormous scale with a huge energy input, and she hasn’t quite figured out the last part of not allowing almost all of what is captured to escape back into the atmosphere in a short time frame.

          • GoneFishing says:

            CO2 concentration has been falling for millions of years (until just now of course). If natural processes removed most of the CO2 we would have snowball earth, so nature has done a fine job of balancing CO2 concentration over the eons. Allowing what is captured to enter the atmosphere again is called equilibrium. We are now fully out of equilibrium.

  27. Duncan Idaho says:

    Terrified talk in US national security circles that WikiLeaks is going to publish many CIA or NSA intercepts of Merkel tonight or tomorrow.

    • George Kaplan says:

      What does it say about the competence of the intelligence services that they can’t keep any secrets from the general public. let alone rival countries?

      • Nathanael says:

        This is the same CIA which didn’t notice the collapse of the Soviet Union. Clinton had to learn about it from CNN. He asked them who the coup plotters were. They didn’t know. He asked them who Yeltsin was. They didn’t know.

        The CIA is completely, 100%, worthless. Has been my entire life.

        Before I was born, they were more effective but were actually counterproductive, doing stuff like overthrowing the elected government of Iran in a coup for Anglo-Persian Oil, which had terrible long-term consquences for the US.

        CIA should be dissolved and liquidated.

  28. Survivalist says:

    I’d heard rumours that Russia was training Libyan troops in Syria. Now this has popped up.

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