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Fear and Loathing, Irony and Deception

By: Dr. Ricky Rood, 12:11 AM GMT on January 10, 2017

Fear and Loathing, Irony and Deception

Surely, some will think that I will sound like an apologist in this blog. Oh, well.

Several colleagues have told me that my last blog / editorial was a struggle to find optimism. After finishing that blog, I had no sense of optimism. (I expect an updated version of the editorial will be published in the February print edition of EOS.)

A common emotion among my climate friends is a feeling of loss, much like the death of someone close. I feel threat to my livelihood, my health insurance, and my retirement. I feel threat to the practice of science and the use of science-based knowledge. I feel threat to the country – to the stubborn checks and balances built into our government to support a participatory democracy.

However, we have what we have.

During the presidential transition, a number of statements hostile to climate science and climate scientists have risen and, perhaps, fallen. There was the request for names of climate scientists in the Department of Energy. There were the statements about NASA’s Earth observations being cut or eliminated – some sort of merger with NOAA, the National Oceanographic and Atmospheric Administration. There is the ongoing anxiety, in some cases panic, about the collection, management, and provision of climate data by the U.S. government. There are the many concerns about the future of the Environmental Protection Agency.

Climate change is a political issue. It may be motivated and informed by scientific investigation, but it is a political issue. It is a political issue that is intertwined with energy policy. By extension, it is intertwined with the economy. Climate change is entangled with beliefs, self-identification, and power structures.

The responses to the Trump election by the climate community are not monolithic or simple. The responses that seem to dominate in public are panic and simplistic, speculative fear. These responses play into the political strategy of those who dismiss or oppose climate change as an important environmental and societal issue. Panic and fear-based speculation about the damage that will be wrought by hostile actors increase the likelihood that those fears will come true. I believe that is the classic definition of irony. A response that limits itself to outrage at political appointees, and in some cases, dismissal of those appointees as laughable, uninformed individuals, virtually assures the success of those appointees in their new jobs.

A point of my previous editorial was that there is opportunity in what, on the surface, appears as an absolute disaster for climate policy, climate science, and climate professionals. To take advantage of those opportunities requires leadership, organization, presence, and recognition that there are points of negotiation and possibility.

I have been called by colleagues and journalists to get my comments on, for example, the efforts by some scientists and activists to archive and preserve climate data. Whenever I get a call on a subject like this, it seems that they want an answer that either substantiates or amplifies the narrative of war and peace, good and bad, evil and virtue. Usually, however, I find such amplification to be less than useful and, sincerely, not justified. Often my comments end up on the cutting room floor.

When I am asked about Rick Perry, the nominee for Energy Secretary, having said that he wants to shut down the Department of Energy or, more generally, about Trump’s transition team’s hostility towards the EPA, my first response is that there is precedence. This is not new. Spencer Abraham was an Energy Secretary who rather famously, as an elected politician, wanted to eliminate the Department.

The same is true with NASA. Through most of my career at NASA, there were some politicians who wanted to eliminate the Earth observing parts of NASA. There were budget markups with potentially devastating consequences. There were proposals to combine NASA, NOAA, and the U.S. Geological Survey. Some of these proposals made sense. At the same time, they could be construed as an analogue to corporate mergers, which are used as an opportunity to eliminate those functions and those people that are unwanted by the corporate leaders. The contrast between sensible reforms and existential threat is a frequent characteristic of political back and forth.

We are a country often based on conflicting points of views, presented with prejudice, and resolved with some sort of balance of the points of view or adjudication. We do not rely, primarily, on evidence-based, deliberative, decision making.

We do, in fact, have some models of what we might expect to happen. Several states, North Carolina, Texas, and Florida, have tried to suppress and control the language of climate change. Most recently there is the example of Wisconsin (link1, link2, link3). As carefully documented with before and after examples of the words, the human influence on climate change was purged from the web pages of the Department of Natural Resources. Our changing climate is framed as a child, going through a mysterious change. Rather than having an evidence-based foundation for rational planning, we leave climate change to Providence and a response based on reaction and whim. By leaving the causes of climate change out of the language, they are left out of public policy, and there is an unnecessary increase in risk.

This sort of political messaging, which I always view as a sin of omission or information hiding, is deceptive. It is, however, standard behavior in politics and business. In fact, in Wisconsin it is not new. In 2015, I wrote a blog on Wisconsin’s Board of Commissioners of Public Lands not allowing its employees to discuss how climate change affects the lands that it oversees. (A collection of Wisconsin articles.)

This type of message management should be expected as a tactic. Indeed, if I were in the government, I could think of a host of ways to disrupt the federal provision and interpretation of climate data. There are easy ways to take down servers. I expect that much of the excellent analysis placed in the public domain during the Obama administration to sink far below the surface. I expect the hard-earned improvements of climate services to stagnate.

I do not think that observational data will be destroyed; I suspect that would break the law, and presently, I think that we will remain a country of law.

I expect that there will be attempts to weaken many environmental laws. I worry that participation in the panic and fear-based speculation will divert attention from the important issues.

I worry that exaggeration and amplification of anxiety in social media will fuel ineffective fury.

Though I pointed out examples, above, of similar attacks on climate science in the past, I do not mean to suggest, hence, all will be all right. We are in the situation when the executive vigor and legislative wherewithal are in position to do considerable damage. There is the ability to appoint and confirm judges sympathetic to environmental regulation as damaging to business and economic growth. However, there is also the fact that President-elect Trump has proved to be difficult to characterize, resistant to traditional partisan classification, and prone to swift changes of position. Hence, there should be moments of opportunity, which requires leadership, organization, presence, and recognition that there are points of negotiation and possibility.

However, we have what we have. Climate change is a political issue, and it is a political issue that will require political tactics until it is settled policy on a foundation of the settled science.

Climate Change Politics

The views of the author are his/her own and do not necessarily represent the position of The Weather Company or its parent, IBM.

Reader Comments

Living in a bubble, Hieronymus Bosch, detail from The Garden of Earthly Delights, lower central panel

The Human induced Global Warming continues,

unabated.



Atmospheric CO2

December 2016

404.48
parts per million (ppm)


December 2015: 401.85 ppm

Dr. Rood -
Your view of all this reminds me of Jews in Germany in 1937 . Many could not dream of what was to come. They cautioned that status quo would continue . But like climate change, we have reached a tipping point. These corporate gangsters have just taken control of our government. And they have been at it for decades.

We all live in our personal bubbles. And I respect who you say. But "Cheeto Boy", Mr. Putin's orange poodle . Is a narcissistic , power hungry , bully.

I am of student of history , and there this not one time when these folks came to power when things worked out.
We can hope that the dinosaurs get frozen in their tracks.
I will mull this over. An interviewer recently asked me what my colleagues thought of my analysis. I said I imagine they think I am Neville Chamberlain. In a different venue, I struggle with a piece on fascism. I worry about your socio-political tipping point. Have we reached a tipping point, or are we at a extreme in a vacillation back and forth? I conjecture, propose, that if we are at a socio-political tipping point then 1) Our problems are much bigger than climate change, and 2) We will have to have a government that is in a very real way, lawless. Our model of democracy has reached the end of its great experiment.

Quoting 3. RobertWC:

Dr. Rood -
Your view of all this reminds me of Jews in Germany in 1937 . Many could not dream of what was to come. They cautioned that status quo would continue . But like climate change, we have reached a tipping point. These corporate gangsters have just taken control of our government. And they have been at it for decades.

We all live in our personal bubbles. And I respect who you say. But "Cheeto Boy", Mr. Putin's orange poodle . Is a narcissistic , power hungry , bully.

I am of student of history , and there this not one time when these folks came to power when things worked out.
Arctic sea ice extent falls for the 4th day in a row. In January. Note that this is from JAXA, the Japanese snow and ice data center, which is why they have posted a January 10th figure. Click on the link, find JAXA and open the JAXA link as a new tab and the excel spreadsheet will appear. Three consecutive days of ice loss in January has been observed a few times in the satellite record. But never 4 days.

January 6 12,423,574 sq. km.
January 7 12,389,576 sq. km. -33,998 sq. km.
January 8 12,336,453 sq. km. -53,123 sq. km.
January 9 12,328,881 sq. km. -7,572 sq. km.
January 10 12,326,247 sq. km. -2,634 sq km.
Quoting 6. RickyRood:

I will mull this over. An interviewer recently asked me what my colleagues thought of my analysis. I said I imagine they think I am Neville Chamberlain. In a different venue, I struggle with a piece on fascism. I worry about your socio-political tipping point. Have we reached a tipping point, or are we at a extreme in a vacillation back and forth? I conjecture, propose, that if we are at a socio-political tipping point then 1) Our problems are much bigger than climate change, and 2) We will have to have a government that is in a very real way, lawless. Our model of democracy has reached the end of its great experiment.


If this is a vacillation, then we are not yet at the extreme. Many of the liberals and progressives and other sane people I know are trying to grab the pendulum to start it back on the other direction. However I tend to agree with Robert that our situation is more like a tipping point, and the effort of liberals etc is more like trying to pull the country back from the edge of a cliff. I think resistance - with leadership, organization, focus, and persistence - is necessary, but that alone will not keep us from stepping off the cliff. A much greater portion of the American public has to recognize and reject the greed, hypocrisy, and duplicity of the Republicans now in power - and I am very dubious that will happen.

Yes, I think our problems are even bigger than climate change, and I do think we face the possibility of a government not of law, but of men.

It is very hard not to give in to despair.
There is a spelling error in one of the titles of the linked stories. I corrected the spelling in my comment but it's there in one of the links. Whoever finds the spelling error and posts it on my blog first will win a prize.
Dr. Rood

An apologist? No. The eternal optimist? This would be quite possible.

We are not just facing Rick Perry heading the agency he wants to eliminate. We are facing a Trump cabinet that each nominee wants to destroy what they will head. We are fighting blind ideologies and willful ignorance with this incoming administration. While this is not new to us it is a massive flood of political ideologies and willful ignorance that we will be facing now. We already had a huge task of trying to get the message out and to get people to understand the Science involved. Now we are facing every branch of the government doing its best to make sure that the message is distorted, if not destroyed.

"I do not think that observational data will be destroyed; I suspect that would break the law, and presently, I think that we will remain a country of law."
I know that you are a very busy person. I know that you put a lot of thought into what you will say. Have you not had the time to visit Trump's past endeavors and what he thinks of the law? He follows the law only as far as it benefits him. The man has said that he admires Kim Jung Hu because he was smart enough to kill his political enemies. Trump has said that he could kill someone on the street and he would not lose a single vote for doing so. I do not share your eternal optimism under the incoming administration, but I know that you are not an apologist. I wish that I could share your optimism concerning the incoming administration, even if climate change was not on the table. I simply cannot enjoy the feeling of optimism that you must feel.
The use of "you"* is general, as in a person, a human being, which, as I've mentioned in this blog time and again, we all are. Humans. No matter what upsets you, getting worked up by your fears, disappointments or broken dreams to the point of despair is human, and it is also fruitless. You can take some time to forgive yourself for getting down, and you can get yourself back up to face the reality you need to face. How about take a step back and just watch for a while?

Your distress** is not about Jews and Nazis. Your distress is about a conservative Republican President-to-be in the United States, who will be backed by a conservative Congress. The new government has not begun. How about wait and see what happens instead of thinking you know what will happen? The more you try to control what may happen, the more distressed you will become.

The matter at hand does go beyond the science of climate change. It always did. And that's the crux. People. Not just people in the U.S. but billions of people worldwide. People who differ from you. Rich people, poor people. People who see life and live their lives in a different way than you do. People.

*in this paragraph
**as expressed the blog and in comments

And Ps. We do not live in a democracy. The United States of America is a Republic.

(edited for clarity - asterisks)
Unfortunately as i see it people have limited ability to understand science.
1 Lack of education.
2 Lack of access.
3 Total do not care attitude.
We i think are really living in the age of the educated idiot.
I mean the general public as a whole can be labeled as idiots.
There was a film produced in 2006 called 'Idocracy'. See to learn more.. Sadly, this satire is now becoming reality. Not just in the U.S. but worldwide.

Quoting 13. johnzz:

Unfortunately as i see it people have limited ability to understand science.
1 Lack of education.
2 Lack of access.
3 Total do not care attitude.
We i think are really living in the age of the educated idiot.
I mean the general public as a whole can be labeled as idiots.
Quoting 13. johnzz:

Unfortunately as i see it people have limited ability to understand science.
1 Lack of education.
2 Lack of access.
3 Total do not care attitude.
We i think are really living in the age of the educated idiot.
I mean the general public as a whole can be labeled as idiots.
Quoting 14. weatherhistorian:

There was a film produced in 2006 called 'Idocracy'. See to learn more.. Sadly, this satire is now becoming reality. Not just in the U.S. but worldwide.




Sadly, my friends in foreign countries all made references on my Facebook page to Idiocracy right after the election. I wish I never saw that damn movie.
A proposed Secretary of Energy who wanted (wants?) to eliminate the Department of Energy; a proposed Secretary of Education who has no experience in public education except to oppose and attempt to eliminate it; a proposed Attorney General who was denied a federal judgeship (by a Republican congress) because his views were too racist; a Republican House majority that has already resurrected an old House rule that lets them cut the salary of individual public employees to $1, ignoring the Civil Service system; a Republican majority in Congress that has scheduled confirmation hearings for nominees who have not completed (or in some cases not even started) an ethics review process --- somehow this does not sound like a "conservative Republican" administration or legislature.

Waiting to see what happens is IMO not an option. Waiting without organizing, planning, analyzing, and resisting when possible seems to me to be acquiescing in whatever happens, as well as making it harder to oppose actions "we" (whoever we are) think are wrong. Sometimes the only possible resistance may be to say "No, I don't agree. No, I won't cooperate." But that seems to me better than going along.

I don't think it's time to go all Godwin, although the white nationalist/supremacist people are apparently feeling empowered by this election, and scapegoating of minorities seems to be a standard tool of the PEOTUS. But I do think we should be concerned about authoritarianism.

Yes, the US is republic, not a democracy, and accuracy is important, but a republic is not any more impervious to the dangers from greedy, hypocritical, deceitful government than is a democracy.
Barefoot -

I do not understand what you mean by this paragraph. This is a serious question.

"The matter at hand does go beyond the science of climate change. It always did. And that's the crux. People. Not just people in the U.S. but billions of people worldwide. People who differ from you. Rich people, poor people. People who see life and live their lives in a different way than you do. People."
Quoting 12. Barefootontherocks:

The use of "you"* is general, as in a person, a human being, which, as I've mentioned in this blog time and again, we all are. Humans. No matter what upsets you, getting worked up by your fears, disappointments or broken dreams to the point of despair is human, and it is also fruitless. You can take some time to forgive yourself for getting down, and you can get yourself back up to face the reality you need to face. How about take a step back and just watch for a while?

Your distress** is not about Jews and Nazis. Your distress is about a conservative Republican President-to-be in the United States, who will be backed by a conservative Congress. The new government has not begun. How about wait and see what happens instead of thinking you know what will happen? The more you try to control what may happen, the more distressed you will become.

The matter at hand does go beyond the science of climate change. It always did. And that's the crux. People. Not just people in the U.S. but billions of people worldwide. People who differ from you. Rich people, poor people. People who see life and live their lives in a different way than you do. People.

*in this paragraph
**as expressed the blog and in comments

And Ps. We do not live in a democracy. The United States of America is a Republic.

(edited for clarity - asterisks)


Trump has a long history of where his sense of ethics will allow him to go. The majority of Trump's appointees also have a long history in where their political ideology will take them. Your stance that we should all take the "wait and see" approach to this only tells me that you are quite naive, in which I give little credence to, or your own political ideologies will carry more weight in your thinking than will a well-reasoned thought. I have far more often witnessed your criticizing the comments of others, based largely on trivial points that does not actually alter what is being said, than I have seen you offer a well-reasoned thought towards what progress could be made to mitigate a problem. I am saying this as a constructive criticism, for I consider you to be a friend and I as your friend. When you offer that we need to step back and wait to see what will happen I will offer to you to also step back and to ponder just how much reasoned thought you have included in your comments. I hope that you will take this as the constructive criticism that it is intended to be.
Quoting 17. FLwolverine:

Barefoot -

I do not understand what you mean by this paragraph. This is a serious question.

"The matter at hand does go beyond the science of climate change. It always did. And that's the crux. People. Not just people in the U.S. but billions of people worldwide. People who differ from you. Rich people, poor people. People who see life and live their lives in a different way than you do. People."
Same thing I tried to say in here for years when I tried to bring together the science and humanities of life on Earth as we know it. Science is fluid but fairly concrete in a given moment. Throw humans into the mix, the game changes. Then enters the natural hierarchy of human needs (ala A. Maslow). Over the years, I felt most people posting in this blog failed to recognize the human factor when it came to influencing public thought about climate change. When people are struggling to meet the basic needs of food and shelter, they respond to what they see as helpful in securing these needs.

Palpable, the fear commenters here hold for the Earth and its inhabitants because of climate change projections. The bottom line in that paragraph seems to me is this: Please understand others hold palpable fear in the now - and these fears are largely economic.

And that's what got Donald Trump elected.

A blend of science and humanity is needed when proposing a course of action. The most helpful idea toward action I have seen was presented in Dr. Masters blog recently - the plan for energy changeover presented by Mark Jacobson (Stanford University) at AGU in San Francisco in December. I grabbed this graphic out of the presentation as linked by Jeff Masters.


I hope that answers your question.
Quoting 18. Some1Has2BtheRookie:



Trump has a long history of where his sense of ethics will allow him to go. The majority of Trump's appointees also have a long history in where their political ideology will take them. Your stance that we should all take the "wait and see" approach to this only tells me that you are quite naive, in which I give little credence to, or your own political ideologies will carry more weight in your thinking than will a well-reasoned thought. I have far more often witnessed your criticizing the comments of others, based largely on trivial points that does not actually alter what is being said, than I have seen you offer a well-reasoned thought towards what progress could be made to mitigate a problem. I am saying this as a constructive criticism, for I consider you to be a friend and I as your friend. When you offer that we need to step back and wait to see what will happen I will offer to you to also step back and to ponder just how much reasoned thought you have included in your comments. I hope that you will take this as the constructive criticism that it is intended to be.
I appreciate your comment back to me.

I have mentioned more than once being apolitical. I remain so. Plenty thought, Rookie. Years worth of thought and life experience is reflected in that comment. 'member that kids story about Ferdinand the Bull? If not, you might want to read it.

Criticize others' comment. I spoke up because they mostly lacked any semblance of an understanding of what it means to be human. Not for a long time. I have stayed away. I was called names, blasted and attacked in return, accused of things I am not capable of and did not do, causing me to ignore many commenters here and at Jeff Masters - even his whole blog at times. I exercised restraint and allowed myself to read therecould only when I was signed out and could not comment back. I came back to Ricky Rood's to post again, after years of not even reading here, because I see anxiety over Donald Trump's election being expressed as anger, fear and despair.

Please also see my comment to FLWolverine just posted. Simply, that's where I'm coming from - a broader and non-political view that you still do not seem to see. And hope for the future, which I hope you will gain.

(edit: typos)
The Trump admin want our FEMA Disability Hero Marcie Roth to resign from FEMA.

This is not acceptable in any way,.

Paul Timmons and myself along with all from Portlight,the Red Cross know how much she means to all the nation.

Her being forced out will leave a position not fillable,by anyone I can think of.

This is Madness.

Marcie Roth,FEMA

Marcie Roth serves as Senior Advisor and Director of the Office of Disability Integration and Coordination, leading the national transformation towards integrating the access and functional needs of people with and without disabilities throughout all aspects of whole community emergency preparedness and disaster response, recovery and mitigation.



Portlight Chairman Paul Timmons along with Marcie Roth at FEMA Headquarters,Washington D.C. July 30th, 2015.

Ms. Roth joined DHS/FEMA in 2009 after serving for over 20 years in senior leadership positions with national and international disability policy organizations. She led national private sector response to the needs of survivors with disabilities during and after Hurricanes Katrina and Rita, and she was commended by the White House for her efforts on behalf of New Yorkers with disabilities in the aftermath of the 2001 terrorist attacks.
Quoting 20. Barefootontherocks:

I appreciate your comment back to me.

I have mentioned more than once being apolitical. I remain so. Plenty thought, Rookie. Years worth of thought and life experience is reflected in that comment. 'member that kids story about Ferdinand the Bull? If not, you might want to read it.

Criticize others' comments. I spoke up because they most lacked any semblance of an understanding of what it means to be human. Not for a long time. I have stayed away. I was called names, blasted and attacked in return, accused of things I am not capable of and did not do, causing me to ignore many commenters here and at Jeff Masters - even his whole blog at times. I exercised restraint and allowed myself to read therecould only when I was signed out and not comment back. I came back to Ricky Rood's to post again, after years of not even reading here, because I see anxiety over Donald Trump's election being expressed as anger, fear and despair.

Please also see my comment to FLWolverine just posted. Simply, that's where I'm coming from - a broader and non-political view that you still do not seem to see. And hope for future, which I hope you will gain.


Ferdinand the Bull? That goes back to a youth that I can barely remember, but, yes, I remember the story.
Ferdinand the Bull
The bull that was so taken in with the wonders of nature and its beauty that it refused to join in the rat race that the others did?

Do you remember the story about the grasshopper and the ant? The grasshopper consumed everything in sight until he had his fill, but the grasshopper never set anything aside for the future. The ant did work towards the future and adjusted his present day needs towards his future needs. This is what I allude to when I say that you do not put enough thought into what you will say. While people do struggle to exist today you do not seem to think forward about how much more difficult it will become when a changing climate begins to put more stress on nearly everything that we need to exist. We have it made in the shade compared to everyone that existed prior to 200 years ago. Yet we seem to think that our future generations have no rights to what we enjoy now. Even if we see our life as a struggle now this does not give us the right to make the existence for our future generations an even greater struggle for them.

I do not wish to be confrontational with you. There is far more to life than what we have laid an emotional claim to. Just ask Ferdinand, the bull. How have so many generations before us existed without major corporations trying to sell their wares and trinkets to us? How have so many generations before us existed without credit cards and credit ratings? How have so many generations before us existed without the XBox, iPhones and other common distractions? We are far too emotionally attached to serving only our self and with far too little regards for who will come behind our pleasures and distractions of today. Should you truly think about how hard life is for us now then I implore you to think about how we live our life today is making things more difficult for the future generations to exist at all. Our oceans are littered with plastic that sea life and sea birds try to consume and to feed to their young. Human contamination of the environment is common place and we did not try to get a handle on this until it became a threat to our existence now. We are doing the same thing with fossil fuels as we are doing with plastics and our common litter. We, for some reason, seem to lack the ability to recognize this as a threat to us now. Why is this?
The Trump admin want our FEMA Disability Hero Marcie Roth to resign from FEMA.

This is not acceptable in any way,.

Paul Timmons and myself along with all from Portlight,the Red Cross know how much she means to all the nation.

Her being forced out will leave a position not fillable,by anyone I can think of.

This is Madness.

Marcie Roth,FEMA

Marcie Roth serves as Senior Advisor and Director of the Office of Disability Integration and Coordination, leading the national transformation towards integrating the access and functional needs of people with and without disabilities throughout all aspects of whole community emergency preparedness and disaster response, recovery and mitigation.



Portlight Chairman Paul Timmons along with Marcie Roth at FEMA Headquarters,Washington D.C. July 30th, 2015.

Ms. Roth joined DHS/FEMA in 2009 after serving for over 20 years in senior leadership positions with national and international disability policy organizations. She led national private sector response to the needs of survivors with disabilities during and after Hurricanes Katrina and Rita, and she was commended by the White House for her efforts on behalf of New Yorkers with disabilities in the aftermath of the 2001 terrorist attacks.
Hi Rookie,
Yes I do. My grandmother gave me a great education in fables. Fables teach us lessons. Bet you'd be hard put to find a fable I have not read. Some of my favorites come from India.

As regards the ant: The ant (Oops. Lol) grasshopper was lazy. When humans struggle for basic needs in the now, they have trouble seeing a future. Though there are many struggling for basic needs here, I don't mean just U.S. humans. I think of Nigeria with which I have some real experience more than acquaintance... Industrialization in India... World population growth. (No. I am not trying to change the subject.)

The tradition of the U.S. has been to use and destroy. Not just the Earth but the people and creatures upon it. You make points that, if you knew me better, you'd know I agree, especially those about the "spoiled American" you present. Maybe just my age showing, as youngsters would have no idea what you're talking about because they grew up with electronic communication and you and I remember the Sputnik launch. I do anyway. I accepted the need to be "green" (which term I hate because now it's a symbol for political polarization) when I was a young child learning to brush my teeth and my Dad told me not to leave the water running because it wastes water. I need no lecture about conservation. I grew up respecting nature and I will respect Earth and its creatures to the day I die. And beyond, whatever that is.

I wrote a script once about a guy who was in love and couldn't stop drinking to save the relationship. Cross between The Days of Wine and Roses and a RomCom in a fun setting. Things looked bleak toward the end, but I wrote hope into the ending anyway. One line I like from the final scene in that script is, "Why is the insane question." When I find myself asking "why" for any reason, I back off and think, and I realize sometimes things are just what they are and there is no understanding the person, event, idea or whatever caused the "why" question.

"we seem to think that our future generations have no rights to what we enjoy now. Even if we see our life as a struggle now this does not give us the right to make the existence for our future generations an even greater struggle for them... We are doing the same thing with fossil fuels as we are doing with plastics and our common litter. We, for some reason, seem to lack the ability to recognize this as a threat to us now. Why is this?"

In the case of this question, pretty sure I answered the "why" before you asked. Human needs. Human nature. I will say further maybe asking "why" is where fear tries to take some people off-kilter and maybe if they'd take a look at the sky, see birds fly, smell flowers, watch snow sparkle, spend a moment or three with pure nature, they'd recharge an awareness of the good out there, and the progress - though slow - that is being made.

The fear I hold these days is political polarization in this country becoming worse than it was during Vietnam. That is my "why" for my being able to give Donald Trump a chance. His life is that of a maverick more than a politician. I want to see which way he goes. The positive thing I see about his political appointees is they know their business from the inside out, and if revisions are to be made, will know exactly where and how to make them. We'll see what direction he asks his cabinet and advisors to go. Maybe that's naive. Right now it works, for me anyway. Works better than believing media that has largely forgotten what journalism is. (Wall Street Journal excepted.) The alternative is what? Revolution? I believe our way of governing this country will take us everywhere we need to go when changes need to be made. It always has.

(edit: typos)
Barefoot, you seem to be saying, in a roundabout way, that if attempt to do anything about AGW, we will destroy society. We are attempting to say, that if we do nothing, we will destroy society - except the costs will be even higher. Forgive me please if I misunderstand you.

An ounce of prevention is worth a pound of cure and all that.

"and maybe if they'd take a look at the sky, see birds fly, smell flowers, watch snow sparkle, spend a moment or three with pure nature," That is the kicker. When we go to smell the flower, we find that it bloomed 2 weeks early and is now gone...
Worlds in water droplets or bloggers in bubbles? Dartmoor, England, January 10, 2017. Embiggenable

How climate change denier brains became that way, detail from The Garden of Earthly Delights by Hieronymus Bosch.

Quoting 14. weatherhistorian:

There was a film produced in 2006 called 'Idocracy'. See to learn more.. Sadly, this satire is now becoming reality. Not just in the U.S. but worldwide.


On the bright side, current-day average people like us will become quite exceptional in the near future....





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Quoting 26. cynyc2:

Barefoot, you seem to be saying, in a roundabout way, that if attempt to do anything about AGW, we will destroy society. We are attempting to say, that if we do nothing, we will destroy society - except the costs will be even higher. Forgive me please if I misunderstand you.

An ounce of prevention is worth a pound of cure and all that.

"and maybe if they'd take a look at the sky, see birds fly, smell flowers, watch snow sparkle, spend a moment or three with pure nature," That is the kicker. When we go to smell the flower, we find that it bloomed 2 weeks early and is now gone...
No. Nothing roundabout. Straight. I am saying economics is foremost in most human's minds, rich or poor, and the economic effects of solutions must be considered for all societies on this globe when making the solutions. How's that? For years I said you are dealing with humans, present the GW message with that in mind. Also stress solutions not politics.

As far as smelling roses, etc: The disappointment the election caused, as evidenced in comments in this blog and elsewhere on this forum, has brought comments expressing (more than the usual) anger, fear and despair from some posters at this forum. Nature feeds the soul. Anger, fear and despair destroy it. I'm saying, take a break. Feed your soul. The flowers are still blooming.

(edited for typos, clarity)
New from Tamino:

Global Warming’s Record Year

It is widely publicized that 2016 will certainly break the record for yearly average global temperature. Again. This will be the third year in a row we’ve set a new record. It’s time we paid attention.

I’ve often emphasized that just because Earth shows an indisputable warming trend, that doesn’t mean every year will be hotter than the one before. In addition to trend, there is also a lot of fluctuation in things like global temperature. So we shouldn’t expect each year to break the temperature record.

But we did in 2014. We did again in 2015, by a substantial margin. We did again in 2016, by a substantial margin. The third year in a row of record-breaking global temperature will probably get the most attention, but it may not be the most important or most worrisome record set last year.


More ...
From Dr. Rood: "there is also the fact that President-elect Trump has proved to be difficult to characterize".

Yes and no.

For people familiar with the psychological phenomenon, Trump is quite easily characterized as a narcissist. I think it is fair to describe his narcissism as a personality disorder. Having been born into a rich family willing to protect him out of loyalty and having the means to hire people willing to protect him for financial gain, he manages with a personality that would cause other people significant hardships. As a deeply narcissistic person, he is profoundly insecure and at the same time aggressively grandiose. He has no specific agenda other than his own ego. His nationalism and simultaneous admiration of dictators and strong men exists because he experiences pride in the nation as pride in himself and, similarly, fealty demanded by dictators as fealty that he himself deserves.

For people unable to see what is plainly there and take it at face value, Trump is a conundrum. Traditional political categories largely do not apply to someone as deeply disturbed as he is. Trump capitalizes on this confusion. Perhaps, either:

a) People everywhere have their own narcissistic tendencies. Members of the educated populace take pride in the knowledge and skills they have acquired and want to apply them to Trump. Their analyses are always flawed and open to criticism.

b) People everywhere have, each of them, a set of favorite narratives that they use to give structure to the world. In spite of conflicting evidence, they will persist with those narratives. and try to fit Trump into them, but Trump is an outlier who does not fit the common narratives.

Trump for his part is happy with the resulting confusion. He even makes conflicting statements that encourage it. The combination of his own and other people's actions makes it harder for people to see Trump as he really is. Meanwhile, for the uneducated populace, he succeeds as a demagogue, but demagoguery is nothing that unusual. Viewing Trump as merely a demagogue actually normalizes him. In fact, he is quite abnormal. For whatever reason, people do not admit what is obvious.
All the risks of climate change, in a single graph
There are a lot of them.


Updated by David Roberts@drvoxdavid@vox.com Jan 9, 2017, 8:40am EST

The risks of climate change are not easy to communicate clearly. Since the atmosphere affects everything, everything will be affected by its warming — there’s no single risk, but a wide and varied array of risks, of different severities and scales, affecting different systems, unfolding on different timelines. It’s difficult to convey to a layperson, at least without droning on and on.

One of the better-known and more controversial attempts to address this problem is a graphic from the reports by the Intergovernmental Panel on Climate Change. The so-called “burning embers” graph attempts to render the various risks of climate change — “reasons for concern,” or RFCs — in an easy-to-grasp visual form.

In a new paper in the journal Nature Climate Change, a group of 17 scholars examines the RFC conceptual framework and reviews the latest science. (Because IPCC reports take so long to produce, the science they contain is always a few years behind.)

Long story short, they find that the graphic is generally accurate (though it has key limitations). They offer suggestions for how the RFC framework could be extended in the future to “better account for possible changes in social and ecological system vulnerability.”

I won’t get into the details — I just want to have a look at their new and improved burning-embers graph, which is up at the top of this post.

As you can see, there is a ton of information about the risks of climate change crammed in there, so it’s worth unpacking a bit. It offers a remarkably coherent overview of the various risks that lie ahead this century.


comment 34. bappit
You should win the Internet today for that comment.
+ 1,000
Have you seen the recent documentary on Bosch? I thought it excellent.

Quoting 28. BaltimoreBrian:

How climate change denier brains became that way, detail from The Garden of Earthly Delights by Hieronymus Bosch.


Re: Comment 34 - Bappit

President Trump will tweet you right! Making America grate again! W didn't do enough.
Dr. Rood, I did not see the recent documentary on Bosch--if the one you're thinking of is online somewhere I'd love you to post the link--on my blog if you like. I remember him from a sophomore art appreciation course. And if you visit my blog you'll see I've gone medieval lately. There are some other close-up details from his works that I decided not to post because they could be "too much".
Quoting 38. CaneFreeCR:

Re: Comment 34 - Bappit

President Trump will tweet you right! Making America grate again! W didn't do enough.
Trump tweeting as foretold in the complete chronicles of Jean Froissart (1337-1405), in the Froissart of Louis of Gruuthuse edition from the 1470s:

We can agree on your analysis of potential tactics, even if we don't agree necessarily on all of the data.
The other thing you could add to your list of effective tactics is persistence. What is presented should be consistent, what is given as accompanying verbage should always be consistent. And the point of view of science could be more consistent. Persistence is the quality you and your fellow scientists are missing. Build it from consistency.

The other thimng I would point out, is the media campaigns and social media shrieking is not productive. I ignore the FB screms and take the media with a very large grain of salt. Make your messsage more consumable.
Deep Dish Derp on a Friday.

Complete gish gallop of nothing.

For a first post, you could have drawn a clown maybe?

Warming update!
European deep freeze.
http://www.independent.co.uk/news/world/europe/eu rope-refugees-freeze-to-death-hypothermia-bulgaria -athens-cold-weather-serbia-sleeping-rough-a752010 6.html

Link





Link
Refugees freezing to death across Europe after 'continued failure' on crisis leaves thousands at risk
Two Iraqi men were found dead after walking for 48 hours through heavy snow

Lizzie Dearden, Niamh McIntyre @lizziedearden Wednesday 11 January 2017






CHICAGO (CBS) — Trains were running on a limited basis Thursday after weather was blamed for shutting down the South Shore Line.

Ice on overhead electric lines stopped several trains literally in their tracks.

Riders trying to get into the city found themselves sitting on trains for six or seven hours. Eventually, a decision was made to return them to their originating stations. And even then it was taking hours to get them back to where they started.



Link


News | Environment | Local
Portland Area Hit With Historic Snowfall Tuesday Night, More On The Way
by Bryan M. Vance Follow , Dave Blanchard Follow , and Conrad Wilson

Link


And the list goes on. and on, and on,,,,,,,
https://www.wunderground.com/news/alaska-frigid-bel ow-zero-temperatures-january-2017

Here we go, something on the horizon, could it be 40 below, don't know!

every time they forecast 5 above, it ends up at 7 below, odd how that works. (not)


image for comment 44
A block of ice containing a drowned fox who broke through the thin ice of the Danube river four days earlier sits on the bank of the Danube river in Fridingen, southern Germany, Friday, Jan. 13, 2017. (Johannes Stehle/dpa via AP)

http://ww4.hdnux.com/photos/56/36/36/12183479/3/9 20x920.jpg




Global climate update:
ATTENTION!

As of January 13, 2017, iceagecoming's discovery is that winters do indeed still exist on our planet. This discovery leads us to believe that the global warming hoax/scare/fear mongering that is being propagated by the commie/pinko/leftist/socialist that want to take over the world just to tax us in to oblivion is, in fact, include preferred denier psuedo-science talking point here. Yes. It does appear that glaciers are advancing towards the equator at an alarming rate. Fear not those of you that feel the shivers that course their way through your freezing bodies as you read this. Iceagecoming is offering to us our salvation from such a dreadful end! He is starting a new clothing line!


note - hand mittens and scarfs are optional wear. Those being most threatened by the advancing glaciers should opt for both. Just saying.

Added:
Iceagecoming is starting a petition to end winters on our planet. You can sign this petition here - http://www.iceagecoming.too.hot.to.care.nul

http://www.bbc.com/news/world-europe-38607862

Again and again, all these items reference below normal temps, and no drought, and lots of snow, all contrary to the warmist religious belief AGW, Welcome to reality, but then like the last administration, living in a bubble has that effect, and fake news.

Tata mates.
Meanwhile, outside the bubble...



Source: NOAA National Centers for Environmental information, Climate at a Glance: Global Time Series, published December 2016, retrieved on January 14, 2017 from http://www.ncdc.noaa.gov/cag/<
Quoting Michael Moore:

"5. Trump has nominated in Rex Tillerson the most powerful corporate CEO in the world as "our" Secretary of State. Why would the quarter-billionaire head of the world's richest corporation want a "government job?" So that he, a personal friend of Putin's, can get the US sanctions lifted off Russia so that his company, ExxonMobil, can get back to their exclusive oil deal with Russia -- which will eventually net ExxonMobil three TRILLION dollars. This is nothing less than a bold, audacious robbery in broad daylight -- and it says a lot about you and me that they think they can get away with it."
Here is IMDB ... on Amazon, Vimeo

http://www.imdb.com/title/tt5337758/

I am surprised by how bad the reviews are. Some called it boring! I found it fascinating in all of its themes.


Quoting 39. BaltimoreBrian:

Dr. Rood, I did not see the recent documentary on Bosch--if the one you're thinking of is online somewhere I'd love you to post the link--on my blog if you like. I remember him from a sophomore art appreciation course. And if you visit my blog you'll see I've gone medieval lately. There are some other close-up details from his works that I decided not to post because they could be "too much".
Simon Donner:
‏@simondonner

Too much competition I assume

BREAKING: APNewsBreak: Ringling Bros. circus says it is closing down 'The Greatest Show on Earth,' following a 146-year run.


Michael E. Mann:
‏@MichaelEMann Michael E. Mann

Yes--you can now watch a clown show for free 24/7, any U.S. cable news network...
RT @simondonner
Find the "Why?" here:

Quoting 25. 999Ai2016:

Trump, Putin and the Pipelines to Nowhere
Medium.com - December 2016.
.... we have no real choice but to act — and, in fact, climate action will make most people not only safer, but better off — big changes are coming, far sooner than most Americans understand.

But some people totally understand: the ones who stand to lose money from these changes.

....
Outstanding link, 999!
Quoting 29. BaltimoreBrian:

How a moon slows the decay of Pluto's atmosphere
I improved the link.
Quoting 55. LowerCal:

I improved the link.
Thank you :) I'm improving it in the comment as well.
Antarctic Science Lab On the Move to Escape Breaking Ice

Tom Metcalfe | Live Science | January 10, 2017

A British scientific base in Antarctica is on the move to a new location, to avoid being cut adrift by a crack in a floating ice shelf.

The British Antarctic Survey (BAS) announced on New Year's Eve that the first module of the Halley VI Research Station was towed by tractors to a new site on the Brunt Ice Shelf in Antarctica's Weddell Sea, 14 miles (23 kilometers) east of its former location.

The remaining seven main buildings of the modular research base will be towed to the new site over the coming weeks, as the relocation team takes advantage of the 24 hours of daylight during the brief Antarctic summer. [See Photos of the Antarctic Research Base Being Moved]

"It's been a very positive couple of days for the team," BAS officials posted on the organization's Facebook page on Dec. 31. "Last night they managed to successfully tow the first of the eight Halley modules to the new site at Halley 6a."


A growing chasm in the ice southeast of the base threatens to cut the Halley VI base off from the main ice shelf. (Credit: British Antarctic Survey)

The modern Halley base is the sixth British research station of that name built on the floating Brunt Ice Shelf since 1956. Each of its main modules is equipped with hydraulic legs and skis, but this is the first time they have been moved since the new base became operational in 2012.

The Brunt Ice Shelf is typically around 490 feet (150 meters) thick. But scientists have learned that a long-dormant chasm in the ice southeast of the base is now growing by more than 1 mile (1.7 kilometers) each year, and threatens to eventually cut the base off from the inland section of the ice shelf.

Surveys of the ice shelf have located a new site for the base, inland of the chasm, and preparations to move the base buildings began last year, according to the BAS.

Now that the relocation of the Halley base is underway, BAS staff have only a few weeks left of polar summer to complete the move.

"Each summer season is very short — about nine weeks," BAS operations director Tim Stockings said in a statement. "And because the ice and the weather are unpredictable, we have to be flexible in our approach."

"We are especially keen to minimize the disruption to the science programs. We have planned the move in stages — the science infrastructure that captures environmental data will remain in place while the station's modules move," Stockings said.

The BAS hopes to have the Halley VI base fully operational at the new site by the 2017/2018 Antarctic summer, when the environmental programs will also be relocated.

BAS communications manager Athena Dinar said it would take up to 15 hours for specialized tractors to tow each of the eight Halley modules over the 14 miles (23 kilometers) to the new site. "It will be taken very slowly as the [operational] modules have not been towed before," she told Live Science.

The eight main Halley modules provide accommodation and research facilities for around 60 British scientists and support staff during the Antarctic summer months, Dinar said. Over the winter months, a few staff members keep the base operational and the experiments running.

Watching the skies

Britain's Halley base has played an important role in studies of the Earth's atmosphere. Weather and atmospheric data, including measurements of ozone in the Earth's upper atmosphere, have been collected since the first base, Halley I, was established in 1956, according to the BAS.

In 1985, scientists at Halley VI discovered Antarctica's "ozone hole" — a region of ozone-depleted air in the upper atmosphere over the continent that worsens during the south-polar spring.

Subsequent research linked the Antarctic ozone hole to the accumulation in the Earth’s upper atmosphere of chlorine-based chemicals, such as the chlorofluorocarbons (CFCs) once used as refrigerants and in aerosol cans. The discovery led to the development of the Montreal Protocol, a global effort adopted in 1987 to eliminate the use of CFCs and other ozone-depleting chemicals.

As well as continuing measurements of the ozone layer and other physical processes in the atmosphere, current research programs at Halley VI include taking advantage of the base's location near the South Pole to monitor interactions between the solar wind and the Earth's magnetic fields, which can trigger frequent displays of the aurora australis, or southern lights.
Dr. Rood, thank you for the information on the Hieronymus Bosch documentary. I'll be viewing it soon!
Quoting 60. BaltimoreBrian:
(snip)*** With a Major Oil Discovery, Guyana Is Poised to Become a Top Producer
Brian, I think that last headline should have been slightly different: "With a Major Oil Discovery, Guyana Is Poised to Become a Top Polluter" :-) (I know you didn't write it)
Jennifer Francis - A New Arctic Feedback (December 2016):
Youtube video link

The Smoking Gun of Arctic Warmth Leads To A Stunning Indictment
AGU Blogosphere - December 2016.
World needs to invest $25 trillion in new oil capacity over next 25 years, Saudi Aramco's CEO says

"Speaking Tuesday at the World Economic Forum in Davos, Amin Nasser told a Wall Street Journal panel that $25 trillion would need to be invested over the 25 years on new oil capacity to meet rising demand. He added that renewable energy will gain a market share over the long term but it would not be dominant."

Really? Were we to suggest that we should invest 1 trillion dollars, 1/25 of what Nasser is asking for, on renewable energy sources over the next 25 years the fossil fuel industries' apologists would claim that this would destroy the world economy. Imagine where we could be in 25 years if the world invested 25 trillion dollars towards renewable energy sources during that time.

""It will take decades for [renewables] to replace petroleum resources. So what we are doing in Saudi Aramco, we are building our capacity in the oil," he said"

News flash for you, Mr. Nasser. 25 years for further oil investments to meet rising energy demands IS decades.

Moral of the story:
Fossil fuels are a finite source for meeting our energy needs. Should we not have a well established renewable energy source in place long before fossil fuels become depleted then the costs will be much higher than 25 trillion dollars over the following 25 years. Fossil fuels will become too expensive to use long before they become depleted. That old "supply and demand" price adjustment thingy will still be a thing then.
Quoting 53. Xandra:

Simon Donner:
‏@simondonner

Too much competition I assume

BREAKING: APNewsBreak: Ringling Bros. circus says it is closing down 'The Greatest Show on Earth,' following a 146-year run.


Michael E. Mann:
‏@MichaelEMann Michael E. Mann

Yes--you can now watch a clown show for free 24/7, any U.S. cable news network...
RT @simondonner


Collective nouns can be interesting

A flock of sheep
A school of fish
A murder of crows

However, there's no collective noun for climatologists as far as I know. I believe that the collective noun for a group of climatologists should be 'quandary'. As in "a quandary of climatologists signed a letter opposing the president's new energy policy...". What say you?
In his most recent post, Tamino removes the the influence of el Niño, volcanic eruptions, and solar variations from the three major surface temperature datasets( NASA, NOAA, and HadCRUT4) .Below are the charts for NOAA:

Unadjusted NOAA data:



Adjusted NOAA data:



Read the rest here
I like that.

Quoting 70. BaltimoreBrian:

Collective nouns can be interesting

A flock of sheep
A school of fish
A murder of crows

However, there's no collective noun for meteorologists as far as I know. I believe that the collective noun for a group of climatologists should be 'quandary'. As in "a quandary of climatologists signed a letter opposing the president's new energy policy...". What say you?
Quoting 74. BaltimoreBrian:

Tillerson doesn't deny climate change but dodges questions about Exxon's role in sowing doubt


Tillerson has not denied climate change and he has not denied that the burning of fossil fuels contributes to the changing climate. Tillerson has maintained that it is an engineering problem and that we can adapt. Tillerson has never offered any of Exxon's engineers to work on the problem. Tillerson has never offered any money to fund the research towards the engineering. Tillerson has never offered any proposals as to how engineering could accomplish the goals of mitigating climate change. Tillerson seems to recognize the problems of a changing climate but, at the same time, he wants to leave himself and Exxon out of it.
For the record, this news source is not in my usual reads, but some interesting stories came across Oilprices.com today:

Why Big Oil Is Unprepared For The Coming Energy War

Peter Tertzakian | Oilprice.com | January 19, 2017

Recently, I gave a presentation on the future of energy to an audience of about 250 oil and gas professionals. Halfway through, I asked the carbon crowd to, "Raise your hand if you have driven an electric vehicle."

It took me less than five seconds to squint and visually sift out the elevated hands.

Five adventuresome people, or about 2 percent of the audience acknowledged that they had taken a ride on a lithium horse.

"Isn't that a bit disconcerting?" I asked. "By now all of you in the room should be aware that new-age electric vehicles represent the first meaningful threat to your monopoly in powering the transportation market."

I went on to ask, "Don't you think you should at least go to a Tesla, Nissan or BMW dealership and test drive the looming adversary?"

Silence.

I wasn't surprised by the results of my straw poll. Hear-nothing, see-nothing attitudes are common within entrenched industries that have long forgotten how to fight for market share…

[]


Solar Could Be A Cheaper Power Source Than Coal Within A Decade

Michael McDonald | Oilprice.com | January 19, 2017

Coal already faces tremendous competition in the U.S. from low cost natural gas, and pressure from environmentalists concerned about its pollution. The last thing the coal industry needs are more problems. But when it rains it pours… or in this case when it’s sunny the solar industry looks to rain on coal.

Coal cost an average of roughly $0.06 per kWh globally which makes it the cheapest power source on average around the world. (Natural gas is much more expensive outside the U.S.) Solar is looking to usurp the title of cheapest power source though.

In 2016, countries from Chile to the United Arab Emirates broke records with deals to generate electricity from sunshine for less than 3 cents a kilowatt-hour, half the average global cost of coal power. This year Saudi Arabia, Jordan, and Mexico are poised to hold auctions and tenders which could see solar generation prices fall even further.

The solar industry is operating more and more efficiently each year with solar prices down an average of 62 percent since 2009, and every part of the solar supply chain becoming more efficient and lowering costs. Economies of scale, increasing manufacturing expertise, and new technology like diamond wire cutting tools have all helped make solar’s progress the envy of the energy complex…

[]
Quoting 70. BaltimoreBrian:

Collective nouns can be interesting

A flock of sheep
A school of fish
A murder of crows

However, there's no collective noun for climatologists as far as I know. I believe that the collective noun for a group of climatologists should be 'quandary'. As in "a quandary of climatologists signed a letter opposing the president's new energy policy...". What say you?


The collective noun for baboons is "Congress"

This explains a lot.
Drought in E. Africa leaves millions in need of aid
Deutsche Welle - January 6.
(...) Need to adapt:
Aid organizations say time is running out. They want to tackle the crisis by supplying seed, food aid or water for the livestock. But long-term assistance is also needed. Extreme weather conditions are recurring more often than in the past because of climate change.
"We are trying to find ways to alert the pastoralists to what is happening. They are going to have to adapt to the changing climatic conditions," said development expert Titus Mung'ou from Kenya. That includes stocking up on reserve supplies during the rainy season. Access to seed and fertilizer is also important. "Climate scientists should be working closely with the pastoralists," he said.


Lesson learned? An urgent call for action in the Horn of Africa, January 2017
ReliefWeb.int.

Funds urgently needed, as Southern Africa enters peak of hunger crisis
ReliefWeb/CARE - January 10.

=========

Worst wildfires in Chile in a decade
Wildfire Today - January 22.

January 22, Aqua-Modis (via NASA Worldview).
"The Party told you to reject all evidence of your eyes and ears. It was their final, most essential command."

~George Orwell, 1984
Quoting 77. georgevandenberghe:



The collective noun for baboons is "Congress"

This explains a lot.
I just realized that the new president has put a skulk of foxes in charge of the nation's "henhouses". That also explains a lot!
Quoting 85. 999Ai2016:

Psychological 'vaccine' could help immunize public against 'fake news' on climate change
Phys.org - January 23, 2017.
Man, the deniers were out in force in the comments to that article (because the study used the 97% consensus on climate change as the "true fact"). And the one person who argued in favor of the consensus didn't describe the under lying study, so a reade might well think the consensus was based on a poll of scientists.
I have found solace these last few days in an unlikely source...Twitter. That's right, Twitter. And not just any Twitter feeds, mind you, but the tweets coming from traditional conservatives. Have they always been this vicious toward Trump? I don't know, but the posts I've seen since the inauguration and the fiasco that was Spicer's first press conference, are truly a thing to behold.

Now this doesn't have much to do with climate change, but it does have to do with the vulgarity now housed in traditionally respected offices, lack of trust in the executive branch, and the First Amendment, among other items.

Recommend Bill Kristol and Evan McMullin for a start...but there are others. They are seriously rallying those on the right in a rallying call against the Trump administration. Reading some of their tweets might just put some smiles back on some faces.

(By the way, honest, sincere conservatives have never bothered me. The liars, deniers, history-rewriting, and empathy-void people posing as 'conservatives' both disgust and frighten me.)
Quoting 88. LAbonbon:

I have found solace these last few days in an unlikely source...Twitter. That's right, Twitter. And not just any Twitter feeds, mind you, but the tweets coming from traditional conservatives. Have they always been this vicious toward Trump? I don't know, but the posts I've seen since the inauguration and the fiasco that was Spicer's first press conference, are truly a thing to behold.

Now this doesn't have much to do with climate change, but it does have to do with the vulgarity now housed in traditionally respected offices, lack of trust in the executive branch, and the First Amendment, among other items.

Recommend Bill Kristol and Evan McMullin for a start...but there are others. They are seriously rallying those on the right in a rallying call against the Trump administration. Reading some of their tweets might just put some smiles back on some faces.

(By the way, honest, sincere conservatives have never bothered me. The liars, deniers, history-rewriting, and empathy-void people posing as 'conservatives' both disgust and frighten me.)


That some conservatives are starting to realize how badly their (and my) core values as a free U.S. citizen are threatened, is gratifying if tardy. I believe they will ultimately be more badly gored by this administration than liberals.
Quoting 89. georgevandenberghe:



That some conservatives are starting to realize how badly their (and my) core values as a free U.S. citizen are threatened, is gratifying if tardy. I believe they will ultimately be more badly gored by this administration than liberals.

What they are saying seems to be actually more hard hitting than what I typically read in the NY Times, the Guardian, etc. You may be right about the effect on them. But perhaps this is just what the country needs: left, center, right, and every shade in between agreeing what a danger he and his people are. And based on some of the tweets, they plan on extraordinary vigilance in watching and fighting his administration.
Quoting 87. FLwolverine:

Man, the deniers were out in force in the comments to that article (because the study used the 97% consensus on climate change as the "true fact"). And the one person who argued in favor of the consensus didn't describe the under lying study, so a reade might well think the consensus was based on a poll of scientists.

Well I don't think a poll of scientists would convince 195 governments to negociate the Paris agreement, would it? That's why they created institutions like the IPCC.
Quoting 91. 999Ai2016:


Well I don't think a poll of scientists would convince 195 governments to negociate the Paris agreement, would it? That's why they created institutions like the IPCC.
True, but I wonder how many lurkers would make that connection. I think a lot of the denier stuff in comment sections in general media sites is aimed at the non-participating readers, because none of the participants (on either side if any topic) ever change their minds or their positions. So if someone is arguing "science is done by consensus", then it seems to me important to point out that the consensus studies are not polls of scientists' opinions.

I was trying to end that sentence with a concise statement of what the consensus studies are based on, but I'm having trouble framing that. Something like "a survey of scientific literature to show that anthropogenic climate change is an accepted scientific fact"? The word "fact" bothers me. Many people on this forum are more scientifically literate than I am. Can someone help me out?
EPA Freezes Grants, Tells Employees Not To Talk About It, Sources Say

It’s unclear whether the freeze is temporary or indefinite.
01/23/2017 08:53 pm ET | Updated 12 hours ago


WASHINGTON ― The Environmental Protection Agency has frozen its grant programs, according to sources there.

EPA staff has been instructed to freeze all its grants ― an extensive program that includes funding for research, redevelopment of former industrial sites, air quality monitoring and education, among other things ― and told not to discuss this order with anyone outside the agency, according to a Hill source with knowledge of the situation.

An EPA staffer provided the information to the congressional office anonymously, fearing retaliation.

It’s unclear whether the freeze is indefinite or temporary as the agency transitions fully to the Trump administration; the Senate has not yet confirmed Trump’s pick for EPA administrator, Scott Pruitt. It’s also not clear the immediate impact the grant freeze would have on programs across the country, since EPA grants are distributed at varying intervals and frequency.

“I will say it’s pretty unusual for us to get these kinds of anonymous contacts from people at the agency, which makes me think it’s unusual,” said the Hill source.

Neither the Trump transition office nor the central press office at the EPA responded to a request for comment Monday.

The Huffington Post also received a message that was reportedly sent to staff Monday that seems to cover the current agency guidance on talking to the press in general, not just about the directive on grants. The memo states that the agency is imposing tight controls on external communication, including press releases, blog posts, social media and content on the agency website.

I just returned from a briefing for Communication Directors where the following information was provided. These restrictions are effective immediately and will remain in place until further direction is received from the new Administration’s Beach Team. Please review this material and share with all appropriate individuals in your organization. If anyone on your staff receives a press inquiry of any kind, it must be referred to me so I can coordinate with the appropriate individuals in OPA.

No press releases will be going out to external audiences.
No social media will be going out. A Digital Strategist will be coming on board to oversee social media. Existing, individually controlled, social media accounts may become more centrally controlled.
No blog messages.
The Beach Team will review the list of upcoming webinars and decide which ones will go forward.
Please send me a list of any external speaking engagements that are currently scheduled among any of your staff from today through February.
Incoming media requests will be carefully screened.
No new content can be placed on any website. Only do clean up where essential.
List servers will be reviewed. Only send out critical messages, as messages can be shared broadly and end up in the press.
I will provide updates to this information as soon as I receive it.
(”Beach team” refers to staffers for the new administration working at the various agencies while new leadership is put in place; “OPA” most likely refers to the “Office of Public Affairs.”)

There are clearly major changes underway at the EPA as the Trump team takes the helm. Trump appointed Myron Ebell, the director of the Center for Energy and Environment at the libertarian think tank Competitive Enterprise Institute and a fierce EPA critic, to oversee the transition work at the agency. Axios reported Monday that the Trump team plans to cut $815 million from the agency’s budget, for programs like states and tribal assistance grants, climate programs and other “environment programs and management.”

Pruitt has a long history of battling the agency over environmental regulations as the attorney general of Oklahoma, describing himself as “a leading advocate against the EPA’s activist agenda.”

UPDATE: 9:50 p.m. ― In a report later Monday night, ProPublica confirmed the freeze in an interview and reported it also includes EPA contracts. Ebell told ProPublica the freeze is to “make sure nothing happens they don’t want to have happen.”

“This may be a little wider than some previous administrations, but it’s very similar to what others have done,” he said.

Trump expected to sign executive actions to advance Keystone, Dakota Access pipelines

By ANDREW RESTUCCIA and SHANE GOLDMACHER 01/24/17 09:33 AM EST Updated 01/24/17 09:59 AM EST


President Donald Trump is slated to sign executive actions on Tuesday that would advance the Keystone XL and Dakota Access oil pipelines, according to a person familiar with the issue.

During the campaign, Trump repeatedly promised to green-light Keystone XL, which if completed would carry Canadian oil sands crude from Alberta to Texas.


It’s unclear exactly how Trump will advance Keystone. He could undo a 2004 George W. Bush administration order that requires a broad inter-agency review led by the State Department of cross-border pipeline projects, a move that would make it easier to approve the project.

The pipeline has been at the center of one of the largest opposition campaigns in the history of the environmental movement, with activists launching a years-long push to kill the project. Former President Barack Obama rejected Keystone in 2015 after a lengthy analysis of the project.

The planned 1,100-mile Dakota Access pipeline, which would run from North Dakota to Illinois, has also become a focal point of progressive opposition to fossil fuel projects. Native American tribes joined with activists to protest the pipeline in a series of demonstrations that caught national attention over the last few months.

Any move to approve the pipelines will face legal challenges from environmental groups.
Quoting 93. FLwolverine:

True, but I wonder how many lurkers would make that connection. I think a lot of the denier stuff in comment sections in general media sites is aimed at the non-participating readers, because none of the participants (on either side if any topic) ever change their minds or their positions. So if someone is arguing "science is done by consensus", then it seems to me important to point out that the consensus studies are not polls of scientists' opinions.

I was trying to end that sentence with a concise statement of what the consensus studies are based on, but I'm having trouble framing that. Something like "a survey of scientific literature to show that anthropogenic climate change is an accepted scientific fact"? The word "fact" bothers me. Many people on this forum are more scientifically literate than I am. Can someone help me out?

My opinion - if you want it so the average reader (non-science background) can immediately understand, something like:

'In a comprehensive review of published scientific research, 97% of the research showed humans are having an impact on climate change'

or

In a thorough review of thousands of published research studies related to climate change/global warming, 97% of the research showed humans contributing to climate change/global warming.

Many people do not know what anthropogenic is, and likely never will. Similarly, 'scientific literature' means next to nothing to them.

Most of the public has no clue about the IPCC. If mentioned, to them it is simply an abstract concept. Scientists flying in planes to get to a meeting they understand, but the overall purpose of the meetings, working groups, and collaborative efforts, not a chance. Worse, people are skeptical of the UN and distrustful of the so-called Agenda 21, and lump international efforts in with that and 'New World Order' nonsense. And I never use acronyms like AR5 - people don't know what it is. The person I'm arguing with might, but most lurkers? No way.

Decades of work, huge amounts of data, scientists from all over the world, thousands of published research articles, 97% of published research shows human impact/cause, international agreement to address the problem, collaborative efforts (in reference to ARs, Kyoto, Paris, China/US agreement), O&G industry agrees it's a problem, etc. These ideas people do understand if kept relatively simple, and in no more than a short paragraph (maybe two).
"No new content can be placed on any website."

So no new data???
I miss the "+" button. I am beginning to feel that I can no longer acknowledge my agreement with statements that are being made. It is similar to using MS Paint with only a keyboard at hand. Many excellent comments have been made in this blog and my "+" icon is not to be found. I tried just using the + on my keyboard, but it had no effect. It's one of those things that you need a mouse to get the job done, and something to click on.
Quoting 97. LAbonbon:

"No new content can be placed on any website."

So no new data???
Only Alternate Facts.
Quoting 98. Some1Has2BtheRookie:

I miss the "+" button. I am beginning to feel that I can no longer acknowledge my agreement with statements that are being made. It is similar to using MS Paint with only a keyboard at hand. Many excellent comments have been made in this blog and my "+" icon is not to be found. I tried just using the + on my keyboard, but it had no effect. It's one of those things that you need a mouse to get the job done, and something to click on.
Your timing was exquisite!
This is a disturbing trend we're all seeing across the states. A post from the Cat 6 blog.



Quoting 170. ILwthrfan:



If you think that the Spicer and Conway Conferences were funny, you should see the 90% of the people I work with here Decatur, IL and their interpretation of it.

People have now stopped listening to anything on TV unless it comes from Trump's mouth. It is gospel from where I live and anything contradicting or slamming his intentions or values is easily debunked as fake news.

Not just one or two people mind you, but 55 of the 60 I work with. It really is becoming disturbing.

Onto the meat of my story, our Executive Director just put out a memo the on 23rd of Jan here with respect to any disrespectful or degrading insults to the Districts intentions in the City of Decatur are punishable by suspension or firing. Among the several items listed, one about excess religion or dogma practices while at work that negatively represents views opposed to Climate Change or Global Warming was listed as one of the items. The Districts goals are in line with protecting our environment and do not constitute falsehoods on political propaganda, misinformation, and or pseudosciences.

The conversation from that point on was nothing but heartbreaking. He was quite surprised about how fired up I was over something so "petty" and insignificant.

The bottom line is that every month we have a board meeting open to the public and this policy is pretty much written specifically for the communication between us and the public as per our lawyer.

Still thinking how to navigate this. It really "redacted" me off and I feel like I just have to accept this?







So they jus disregard your's and others Constitutional Right to free speech,to drive their political and religious views,by suppressing any dissent to that,et al.

You need a good Lawyer, ASAP and sue them all in a class action, vocally at dat.

If we descend into the ether of alternate BS, we all gonna die in a Thermonuclear exchange caused by less than 140 characters one afternoon, or 3am.




Quoting 100. CaneFreeCR:

Your timing was exquisite!


So I see. Never underestimate the power of MS Paint?
Quoting 93. FLwolverine:

True, but I wonder how many lurkers would make that connection. I think a lot of the denier stuff in comment sections in general media sites is aimed at the non-participating readers, because none of the participants (on either side if any topic) ever change their minds or their positions. So if someone is arguing "science is done by consensus", then it seems to me important to point out that the consensus studies are not polls of scientists' opinions.

I was trying to end that sentence with a concise statement of what the consensus studies are based on, but I'm having trouble framing that. Something like "a survey of scientific literature to show that anthropogenic climate change is an accepted scientific fact"? The word "fact" bothers me. Many people on this forum are more scientifically literate than I am. Can someone help me out?


Oh here it is, right when you need it:
(...) So how do experts convince doubters? The Dispatch asked a group of scientists to share their most-compelling evidence. Here are their responses:
Think global warming's a fraud? These scientists want to change your mind
The Columbus Dispatch - January 23.

Of course, it won't convince everybody, but it might help with people regularly exposed to disinformation and still curious about the issue.
Hi all.

So in my class I have assigned a project of where they are looking at ~ 20 agency websites before and after the inauguration. They are archiving the sites.

Given the vigor of the comments, it would be great if you archive things like, Badlands National Park's tweets deleted, CDC conference cancelled, etc. I will try to mine them. Or you can email them to me.

I will try to collect and tag on my tumblr site. Think of a good tag, something classically Orwellian.

thanks,

r
Dr. Rood, I hope you and your students move really, really fast. From the Cat 6 blog:

Quoting 291. TropicalAnalystwx13:

Breaking from Reuters: The Trump administration has ordered the EPA to delete its climate change page.

Link

I was banned for saying it earlier despite clearly being on the topic of Trump/EPA, so let me repeat it for good measure. This is why you don't engage in purity politics (Hillary is the same as Trump, I'm voting Stein!) and why you vote blue. Things are only going to get much worse.


If EPA got the directive, then it stands to reason that NOAA, NASA and others got the same.

Is anyone aware of archiving to a 'safe' location that occurred prior to the Trump takeover?
Scientists' March on Washington

Twitter: @ScienceMarchDC
Facebook: https://www.facebook.com/groups/1862739727343189/
Reddit: /r/scientistsmarch
Get Email Updates
To help: https://goo.gl/forms/zAdY02dBEz3Ykii42
Contact: scientistsmarchonwashington@gmail.com
This tweet and replies pertain to suggestions for archiving govt info, as well as some information on stuff that has already been grabbed. Not sure if this is anything useful for you, but maybe?

Link
It seems to me that websites and groups such as this one will become even more important in the future as collecting points for citizen scientists and citizen science. Distributed science, on the model of the distributed computing projects like SETI, can make an enormous contribution possible by knowledgeable and dedicated citizen scientists, whose observations and records of events in Nature can support the professionals whose funds and staffing will suffer under the budget cuts and shift in focus of the government. Science Underground!
President Trump institutes media blackout at EPA

By Michael Biesecker and John Flesher ASSOCIATED PRESS JANUARY 24, 2017

WASHINGTON — The Trump administration has instituted a media blackout at the Environmental Protection Agency and barred staff from awarding any new contracts or grants, part of a broader communications clampdown within the executive branch.

The prohibitions came to light Tuesday as the agency moved to delay implementation of at least 30 environmental rules finalized in the closing months of President Obama’s term, a potential first step to seeking to kill the regulations.


A summary of the actions posted in the Federal Register includes a long list of regulations that include updated air pollution rulings for several states, renewable fuel standards and limits on the amount of formaldehyde that can leach from wood products. President Trump signed a directive shortly after his inauguration on Friday ordering a ‘‘regulatory freeze pending review’’ for all federal agency rules that had been finalized that have not yet taken effect.

E-mails sent to EPA staff and reviewed by the Associated Press also detailed specific prohibitions banning press releases, blog updates, or posts to the agency’s social media accounts.

The administration has also ordered what it called a temporary suspension of all new business activities at the department, including issuing task orders or work assignments to EPA contractors. The orders were expected to have a significant and immediate impact on EPA activities nationwide. EPA contracts with outside vendors for a wide array of services, from engineering and research science to janitorial supplies.


Similar orders barring external communications have been issued in recent days by the Trump administration at other federal agencies, including the departments of Transportation, Agriculture and Interior.

Staffers in EPA’s public affairs office are instructed to forward all inquiries from reporters to the Office of Administration and Resources Management.


‘‘Incoming media requests will be carefully screened,’’ one directive said. ‘‘Only send out critical messages, as messages can be shared broadly and end up in the press.’’

A review of EPA websites and social media accounts, which typically include numerous new posts each day, showed no new activity since Friday.

White House spokesman Sean Spicer said Tuesday he had no specific information on the blackout.

‘‘I don’t think it’s any surprise that when there’s an administration turnover, that we’re going to review the policies,’’ Spicer said.

Doug Ericksen, the communications director for Trump’s transition team at EPA, said he expects the communications ban to be lifted by the end of this week.

‘‘We’re just trying to get a handle on everything and make sure what goes out reflects the priorities of the new administration,’’ Ericksen said.

Beyond what was stated in the internal email, Ericksen clarified that the freeze on EPA contracts and grants won’t apply to pollution cleanup efforts or infrastructure construction activities. The agency later said it would also seek to complete that review by Friday.

State agencies that rely on EPA for funding were left in the dark, with both Democratic and Republican officials saying they had received no information from EPA about the freeze.

‘‘We are actively seeking additional information so we can understand the impact of this action on our ability to administer critical programs,’’ said Alan Matheson, executive director of Utah Department of Environmental Quality.

Democratic Senate leader Chuck Schumer of New York said the Trump administration should immediately reverse the media blackout and contracting freeze.

‘‘This decision could have damaging implications? for communities across New York state and the country, from delaying testing for lead in schools to restricting efforts to keep drinking water clean to holding up much-needed funding to revitalize toxic brownfield sites,’’ Schumer said.

The executive director for the advocacy group Public Employees for Environmental Responsibility, Jeff Ruch, said the orders go beyond what has occurred in prior presidential transitions.

‘‘We’re watching the dark cloud of Mordor extend over federal service,’’ Ruch said Tuesday, referring to the evil kingdom in the epic fantasy ‘‘The Lord of the Rings.’’

Ruch noted that key posts at EPA have not yet been filled with Republican appointees, including Trump’s nominee for EPA administrator, Scott Pruitt. That means there are not yet the new senior personnel in place to make decisions.

Environmentalists said the orders were having a chilling effect on EPA staff already suffering from low morale. Trump and Pruitt have both been frequent critics of the agency and have questioned the validity of climate science showing that the Earth is warming and man-made carbon emissions are to blame.

Staff at the Agriculture Department’s Agricultural Research Service also received orders not to issue any news releases, photos, fact sheets and social media posts. After an email of the order leaked to the media, the agency said it would rescind the memo.

At the Transportation Department, employees received an e-mail message Monday morning that was ‘‘broadly worded and hard to interpret,’’ but which appeared to be a directive not to issue any news releases or post to social media, according to a DOT employee who wasn’t authorized to speak publicly and spoke on condition of anonymity.

‘‘Everybody’s being very cautious,’’ the employee said.

The AP reported over the weekend that staff employees at the Interior Department were temporarily ordered to stop making posts to its Twitter account after the official account of the National Park Service retweeted a pair of photos that compared those gathered for Trump’s inauguration with the much larger crowd that attended Obama’s swearing-in.

Trump later falsely claimed that more than 1 million people attended his inauguration, which Spicer insisted was the most watched in history.

In a test of what the new administration will tolerate, the official Twitter account of the Badlands National Park published a series of posts Tuesday accurately quoting climate science data that included the current record-setting high concentrations of carbon dioxide in the atmosphere.

The tweets were soon deleted.


# 112

Thanks to Trump, Scientists Are Planning to Run For Office
And they’ve got help.

Darren Hauck / Getty

ED YONG 7:00 AM ET


For American science, the next four years look to be challenging. The newly inaugurated President Trump, and many of his Cabinet picks, have repeatedly cast doubt upon the reality of human-made climate change, questioned the repeatedly proven safety of vaccines. Since the inauguration, the administration has already frozen grants and contracts by the Environmental Protection Agency and gagged researchers at the US Department of Agriculture. Many scientists are asking themselves: What can I do?

And the answer from a newly formed group called 314 Action is: Get elected.

The organization, named after the first three digits of pi, is a political action committee that was created to support scientists in running for office. It’s the science version of Emily’s List, which focuses on pro-choice female candidates, or VoteVets, which backs war veterans. “A lot of scientists traditionally feel that science is above politics but we’re seeing that politics is not above getting involved in science,” says founder Shaughnessy Naughton. “We’re losing, and the only way to stop that is to get more people with scientific backgrounds at the table.”

Naughton, a chemist by training and a former breast cancer researcher, ran for Congress herself in 2014 and 2016, but lost both times in Pennsylvania’s Democratic primaries. She puts those losses down to her inexperience with politics and her outsider status, which locked her out of traditional donor circles. In creating 314 Action, she hopes to provide other scientists with the money and mentorship that would have helped her. “Partly, we’re making the case for why they should run—and Donald Trump is really helping us with that,” she says. “Then, we’re showing them how to run, and introducing them to our donor network.”

Early signs are promising. In just two weeks, more than 400 people have signed up to the recruitment form on the organization’s site. They include Jacquelyn Gill from the University of Maine, who studies how prehistoric climate change shaped life on the planet. “If you’d told me a year ago that I would consider running for office, I would have laughed,” she says. “I always fantasized about serving an administration in an advisory capacity, but we now have explicitly anti-science people in office and in the Cabinet. Waiting passively for people to tap me for my expertise won’t be enough.”

“What I really want to know is: Can I do this without abandoning my career in science?”
Since the election, many scientists have made forays into politics, from signing open letters to marching in open protest. “I think most scientists view their work as pure and noble, and politics as a dirty game. It’s almost like selling out or going to the dark side,” says Frances Colón, who until recently was Deputy Science and Technology Adviser to the Secretary of State. But, since Trump’s victory, “many more scientists are realizing why their voices are needed. I’ve had numerous coffees with people who are considering ways to run.”


Even if only a few are successful, they would significantly bolster the limited numbers of Congressional representatives with scientific backgrounds. A few have undergraduate degrees in science, including Seth Moulton (D-MA; physics), Jacky Rosen (D-NV; computer science), and Louise Slaughter (D-NY; microbiology). Others have doctoral degrees: mathematician Jerry McNerney (D-CA), psychologist Timothy Murphy (R-PA), and physicist Bill Foster (D-Il), who once said that he “inherited the family's recessive gene for adult-onset political activism.”

“I think government works better when we have people with lots of professional backgrounds,” says Kate Knuth, who trained in environmental science and served three terms in the Minnesota House of Representatives between 2006 and 2012. “Scientists bring a unique perspective in how they look at data and think about problems. They’re trained to value evidence, and to change their minds in the face of evidence. Right now, in a lot of our governance, we have people who just say this is the way it is, in the face of huge evidence to the contrary. That makes it hard to make good policy.”

“If you believe that the scientific method alone is going to solve the world’s problems, I don’t think you’re going to be a good politician.”
It is perhaps unsurprising that scientists are so poorly represented in government. Younger researchers—perhaps the demographic most eager to leave the ivory tower for the halls of congress—also face the steepest costs for abandoning academia. Scientific careers are built on continuity and perseverance: Years as a graduate student give way to years in postdoctoral positions, which bleed into professorships. If you step away, it can be hard to step back.

“My role models did good science, rose up the ranks, and then went to serve our country,” says Gill, referring to people like Jane Lubchenco, who was Administrator of the National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration under Barack Obama. “In an ideal world, I’d do this from the comfort of being a full professor. And yet, it’s not something I feel can wait. What I really want to know is: Can I do this without abandoning my career in science?”


Even if scientists do decide to run, they face an intense culture-shock. “In science, your colleagues want to know you have expertise and approach problems through legitimate methods,” says Knuth. “In politics, people first want to know that you care about them and their problems before they care about whether or not you have realistic answers. Those are very different values.”

“They seem to be some of the least likely people to be thinking about running for office,” adds Joe Trippi, a political strategist and campaign manager. “They haven’t been spending the last 16 years planning their run for Congress. You have to help them understand how you run a campaign, get seed money, find a campaign manager, put a team together.”

That’s where 314 Action comes in. With over 80,000 donors and mentors including Trippi and climate scientist Michael Mann, Naughton hopes that it will help scientists to make good on any newfound political ambitions. To start, they are scheduling a webinar for March 14th—Pi Day, naturally—to go over the basics of successful campaigning. Following that, they’ll focus on boosting particular strong candidates.

“In my interactions with them, I’ve had my eyes opened,” says Gill. “There’s all this insider knowledge. And to be told that if you decide to run, you’d have support and financial backing, is tremendously empowering.”

For now, 314 Action will only back Democratic candidates. I wonder if that risks turning science into yet another partisan issue, but Naughton argues that it is already on that road. “When we’re talking about climate change, there’s a clear distinction between the two parties,” she says. Knuth agrees. “It’s hard to say if it would politicize science even more than it already has been,” she says. And at the very least, if 314 Action succeeds, it would expose congressional representatives from both parties to a scientific mindset.

Knuth also argues that this shouldn’t just be about shoving science into government, as if the former will save the latter. It works in reverse too. “When I ran, I spent two to four hours a day, five to six days a week, knocking on doors and listening to people,” she says. “I never felt like I knew more about how people were thinking about the problems in their community, what they wanted from government, and their hopes and dreams for the future. Is that scientific information? No. Is it vetted through peer review? No. But it was invaluable. Scientists need to learn and appreciate the value of other ways of knowing about how the world works.”

“If you believe that the scientific method alone is going to solve the world’s problems, I don’t think you’re going to be a good politician,” she adds. “A politician’s job is to understand how the world works and then make hard decisions about how we should move forward together. Evidence can make those decisions better and it helps us to understand the consequences of different decisions. But it doesn’t tell us what the right decision is.”

From the Cat 6 blog

Quoting 137. LAbonbon:

Columbia Law School, Sabin Center for Climate Change Law:

Climate Deregulation Tracker

President-elect Donald Trump has stated that he intends to undo most or all of the Obama administration’s efforts to address climate change. The Sabin Center has launched this tracker to identify and explain steps taken by the incoming administration to scale back or wholly eliminate federal climate mitigation and adaptation measures. The tracker will also monitor congressional efforts to repeal statutory provisions, regulations, and guidance pertaining to climate change, and to otherwise undermine climate action.

Our Center has also compiled a database of existing U.S. climate change regulations, which will be updated in tandem with the deregulation tracker. The database is organized by agency and topic, and includes links to archived versions of proposed and final regulations as well as technical support documents, regulatory impact analyses, agency guidance, and other relevant resources.
From the Cat 6 blog

Quoting 144. LAbonbon:

Looks like anyone and everyone is calling this Scientific American guest blog a 'must read':

The War on Facts is a War on Democracy
In a time when facts don’t matter, and science is being muzzled, American democracy is the real victim

By Jonathan Foley on January 25, 2017

excerpt:

So, to Mr. Trump, I would say this:

If this is all just a series of missteps, caused by over-zealous mid-level managers during a confusing presidential transition, so be it. Say so. Fix it. Get out on the public stage and affirm your commitment to facts, to truth, and to the independent pursuit of science without political interference. The vast majority of your fellow Americans would applaud you for this. It would be brave. It would be wise. And it would show some class.

But if this is actually part of your governing philosophy, I would give you a warning on behalf of my fellow scientists: Do not mess with us. Do not try to bury the truth. Do not interfere with the free and open pursuit of science. You do so at your peril.

Americans don’t look kindly on bullies, people who try to suppress the truth, or people who try to intimidate scientists and the press. In the long run, this always backfires. The dustbin of history is full of people who have tried, and failed. You will too.

The next time you visit the CIA headquarters, I hope you will take a moment to notice their unofficial motto, etched in the walls of the lobby. It says, “And ye shall know the truth and the truth shall make you free." (John VIII-XXXII.)

From the Abingdon manuscript copy of Beowulf, 1057 AD

Fela sceal gebidan
leofes ond laþes se þe longe her
on ðyssum windagum worolde bruceð.

Much must he endure
of love and hate, who long here
in these days of strife enjoys the world.
Quoting 127. no1der:






Truth is always gonna Trump the ignorant. NASA is brililant,..and the rest of the Federal Resistance to "Duh".

We are leaning forward,together.

Fascism won't last long .

We Veterans have a much larger plan than #DAPL.




From The Weather Channel to Breitbart News

Note to Breitbart: Earth Is Not Cooling, Climate Change Is Real and Please Stop Using Our Video to Mislead Americans

Dec 6 2016 02:15 PM EST
weather.com
00:0601:56



Global warming is not expected to end anytime soon, despite what Breitbart.com wrote in an article published last week.

Though we would prefer to focus on our usual coverage of weather and climate science, in this case we felt it important to add our two cents — especially because a video clip from weather.com (La Niña in Pacific Affects Weather in New England) was prominently featured at the top of the Breitbart article. Breitbart had the legal right to use this clip as part of a content-sharing agreement with another company, but there should be no assumption that The Weather Company endorses the article associated with it.


The Breitbart article – a prime example of cherry picking, or pulling a single item out of context to build a misleading case – includes this statement: "The last three years may eventually come to be seen as the final death rattle of the global warming scare."

In fact, thousands of researchers and scientific societies are in agreement that greenhouse gases produced by human activity are warming the planet’s climate and will keep doing so.

Along with its presence on the high-profile Breitbart site, the article drew even more attention after a link to it was retweeted by the U.S. House Committee on Science, Space, and Technology.

The Breitbart article heavily references a piece that first appeared on U.K. Daily Mail’s site.

Here’s where both articles went wrong:

CLAIM: "Global land temperatures have plummeted by one degree Celsius since the middle of this year – the biggest and steepest fall on record."

TRUTH: This number comes from one satellite-based estimate of temperatures above land areas in the lower atmosphere. Data from the other two groups that regularly publish satellite-based temperature estimates show smaller drops, more typical of the decline one would expect after a strong El Niño event.

Temperatures over land give an incomplete picture of global-scale temperature. Most of the planet – about 70 percent – is covered by water, and the land surface warms and cools more quickly than the ocean. Land-plus-ocean data from the other two satellite groups, released after the Breitbart article, show that Earth’s lower atmosphere actually set a record high in November 2016.

CLAIM: "It can be argued that without the El Niño (and the so-called "Pacific Blob") 2014-2016 would not have been record warm years." (David Whitehouse, Global Warming Policy Foundation, quoted by Breitbart)

TRUTH: NOAA data show that the 2014-16 El Niño did not even begin until October 2014. It was a borderline event until mid-2015, barely above the El Niño threshold. El Niño clearly added to the strength of the record global warmth observed since late 2015. However, if the El Niño spike is removed, 2016 is still the warmest year on record and 2015 the second warmest, according to climate scientist Zeke Hausfather (Berkeley Earth).


Global surface temperature trends for the period 1966-2015 analyzed for El Niño years (red boxes), La Niña years (blue boxes), and neutral years (black boxes), along with volcanic years (gold triangles). The three trend lines show that global temperature has been rising at a fairly consistent rate of about 0.15 - 0.17°C (0.27 - 0.31°F) once La Niña and El Niño departures are factored out. (Berkeley Earth)
CLAIM: "Many think that 2017 will be cooler than previous years. Myles Allen of Oxford University says that by the time of the next big United Nations climate conference, global temperatures are likely to be no warmer than the Paris COP in 2015. This would be a strange thing to happen if, as some climate scientists have claimed, recent years would have been a record even without the El Niño." (David Rose, U.K. Daily Mail, quoted by Breitbart)

TRUTH: There is nothing unusual about a drop in global surface temperatures when going from El Niño to La Nina. These ups and downs occur on top of the long-term warming trend that remains when the El Niño and La Niña signals are removed. If there were no long-term trend, then we would see global record lows occurring during the strongest La Niña events. However, the last year to see global temperatures hit a record low was 1911, and the most recent year that fell below the 20th-century average was 1976.

For an even deeper dive on the science, we recommend the blog by our experts.

Finally, to our friends at Breitbart: The next time you write a climate change article and need fact checking help, please call. We're here for you. I'm sure we both agree this topic is too important to get wrong.

NASA-GISS on Twitter: "Free/open access is available for dozens of science datasets (#climate, #planetary, others) & derived material."

https://data.giss.nasa.gov/
Climate change effects, solutions to be discussed on WPSU's 'Conversations LIVE'
Penn State faculty Richard Alley, Jonathan Brockopp and Michael Mann
to take viewers' questions during Jan. 26 broadcast.
Penn State News - January 20, 2017.
The live broadcast, which encourages community input and interaction between viewers and guests, will air at 8 p.m. on Thursday, Jan. 26, on WPSU-TV, WPSU-FM and online at wpsu.org/live.
Comment: Crazy times in the Arctic by Mark C. Serreze.
Earth Magazine - January 23, 2017.
By Nate Silver: There's a big difference between citing numbers (which everybody does) and being empirical (which is where the real work comes in).
The Party told you to reject the evidence of your eyes and ears. It was their final, most essential command." George Orwell, 1984
Covered in Cat 6, but not here:

'A Nightmare Without An End': Wildfires Burn Out Of Control In Chile

Rebecca Hersher | NPR | January 27, 2017


Firefighters work to put out a forest fire in Constitucion, Chile, on Thursday.
Credit: Martin Bernetti/AFP/Getty Images


The government of Chile says wildfires that have killed at least 10 people are the worst blazes in the country's history.

Several firefighters are among the dead.

"We have never seen anything on this scale, never in the history of Chile," President Michelle Bachelet said earlier this week, after her administration declared a state of emergency. "The truth is that the forces are doing everything humanly possible and will continue until they can contain and control the fires."

Reporting from Rio de Janeiro, NPR's Philip Reeves said Thursday that hundreds of thousands of acres have been destroyed in the southern and central parts of the country and that an entire town was incinerated. "Reports say flames ripped through a place called Santa Olga, burning down its kindergarten, post office and about 1,000 homes," he said.

At least one body was recovered from the ashes in Santa Olga, according to Deutsche Welle, and about 6,000 residents fled the city as the flames moved in.

"This is an extremely serious situation — of horror, a nightmare without an end," the mayor of the coastal city of Constitucion told the German broadcaster. "Everything burned."

The fast-spreading flames have laid waste to forests and vineyards, Phil reported. Chile is a major exporter of wine and grapes and has a growing timber market.

While fires are common in Chile at this time of year, "these have taken on disastrous proportions, thanks to prolonged drought, strong winds and unusually hot weather," Phil said.

In addition to local weather patterns, which themselves are shaped by global climate change, a review of Chile's wildfires published in November in the journal Global and Planetary Change warned the "pattern, frequency and intensity" of wildfires in the country "has grown at an alarming rate" in recent years, in part because of intensive forest management practices that led to a large amount of flammable fuel in the country's forests.

As of Thursday morning, Chile's National Emergency Bureau was tracking 100 active fires covering about 920 square miles, 30 of which have been contained, according to The New York Times.

The newspaper reported: "In total, 4,000 people — including firefighters, troops and national forestry bureau officers — and 46 aircraft have been deployed to combat the fires, according to the National Emergency Bureau.

"Some residents, lacking any training or protective gear, have used tree branches and bottles of water to try to douse the flames."

The Chilean government has appealed for international help. The U.S. Embassy in Santiago said earlier this week that the U.S. government was donating $100,000 "for the local procurement and delivery of firefighting equipment, such as chainsaws and weather monitoring tools requested by the National Forestry Corporation."

The U.S. Agency for International Development and the U.S. Forest Service sent four people to "assess the situation and advise local authorities."

On Wednesday, a privately owned Boeing 747 "supertanker" plane arrived in Santiago to help control the fires from the air. Such planes are capable of dumping 20,000 gallons of flame retardant, Wired magazine reported.

The aircraft is owned by Colorado Springs, Colo.-based Global SuperTanker Services, according to The Gazette newspaper.

The paper reported that the mission, including a 12-person crew, was paid for by Fundación Viento Sur, which is part of the Walton Family Foundation and run by Ben Walton and his Chilean-native wife, Lucy Ana Walton de Avilés. The New York Times reported the price tag for the supertanker was $2 million.

The plane is being deployed in the Maule region, north of the destroyed town of Santa Olga, according to Deutsche Welle.

© 2017 npr
March for Science:
‏@ScienceMarchDC

A message from the organizers #ScienceMarch



Also - no official date set. Don't believe rumors! NO DATE YET!

Statement by @UCSUSA #ScienceMarch stands in solidarity with our fellow scientists who are detained & unable to work




"The pursuit of truth in science transcends national boundaries. It takes us beyond hatred and anger and fear."

- Arthur Eddington

Michael E. Mann:
‏@MichaelEMann

Couldn't be prouder of @Penn_State and our President Eric Barron on this day: http://news.psu.edu/story/447807/2017/01/29/admin istration/penn-state-president-shares-message-foll owing-executive-order

Excerpt from the message:

Reports suggest that enforcement of the executive order is already stranding students and affecting U.S. institutions of higher education. We are monitoring developments closely to ensure that we fully understand how this executive order and any future orders may affect Penn State, including the implications for our many students, researchers and faculty who are citizens of other countries.

Fortunately, to the best of our knowledge, none of our students or scholars who are from the named countries are currently traveling abroad. But the problems that are surfacing with the order are clear, and we join the Association of American Universities and universities all across the country in asking that the order be ended as soon as possible. You can access the AAU statement here: http://www.aau.edu/news/article.aspx?id=18366
Astoundingly Complex Visualization Untangles Trump’s Business Ties



[...]

An interactive version of the data viz lets you click on a name or business to view an expanded list of connections.

[...] The man who promised to “drain the swamp” is himself a hub of potential corruption—as Albrecht’s visualizations so vividly illustrate.
Xandra, #140 could be off topic on a featured blog--better take it down. Patrap got a ban for posting a political Trump comment yesterday on the Cat6 blog and his ban is still ongoing.
It would not surprise me to learn tomorrow that the big berg on the edge of the Larsen C ice shelf has broken free -- there was a Mag 5.4 earthquake today in the Drake Passage which would probably have generated a modest tsunami that would have been felt by the ice shelf. It wouldn't take much movement to finish that crack.
Quoting 141. BaltimoreBrian:

Xandra, #140 could be off topic on a featured blog--better take it down. Patrap got a ban for posting a political Trump comment yesterday on the Cat6 blog and his ban is still ongoing.

It's a visualization of 1.500 individuals and organizations connected directly and indirectly to Donald Trump, where organizations like multinational oil and gas corporations like Exxon Mobil is included.

I think my comment is relevant for this blog.

More about Donald Trump here and here.
From Reuters:

U.S. will change course on climate policy, Trump official says

The United States will switch course on climate change and pull out of a global pact to cut emissions, said Myron Ebell, who headed U.S. President Donald Trump's Environmental Protection Agency (EPA) transition team until his inauguration.

"(Trump) could do it by executive order tomorrow or he could do it as part of a larger package," Ebell told a conference in London on Monday. "I have no idea of the timing."

Trump, a climate change doubter, campaigned on a pledge to boost the U.S. oil and gas drilling and coal mining industries by slashing regulation. He also promised to pull the United States out of the Paris Agreement aimed at curbing global warming.

Trump's administration has asked the EPA to temporarily halt all contracts, grants and interagency agreements pending a review, according to sources.

Ebell, who helped guide the EPA's transition after Trump was elected in November until he was sworn in on Jan. 20, said it was difficult to predict the timing of any action because government departments are still in transition.

Ebell is Director of Global Warming and International Environmental Policy at the Competitive Enterprise Institute, a conservative think tank in Washington.

Trump appointed Oklahoma Attorney General Scott Pruitt, who has led 14 lawsuits against the EPA, as the agency's administrator, although a vote on his nomination has not been scheduled.

Trump also has drawn heavily from the energy industry lobby and pro-drilling think tanks to build its landing team for the EPA, according to a list of the newly introduced 10-member team seen by Reuters on Monday.

(Reporting by Nina Chestney; editing by Louise Heavens/Ruth Pitchford)
Quoting 143. Xandra:


It's a visualization of 1.500 individuals and organizations connected directly and indirectly to Donald Trump, where organizations like multinational oil and gas corporations like Exxon Mobil is included.

I think my comment is relevant for this blog.

More about Donald Trump here and here.


Reports of my demise have been greatly exaggerated.
I would think Mr. Trump would not underestimate those that are against his ideas. It seems that in his first week in office he has taken the 5 or 6 of the most controversial and divided ideas we face as a nation and flipped the script on all them across the board under one extreme view.

In what world would any individual ever think that the type of implementation of such a radical change in ideas in such a short time frame would be a safe way of transitioning your country away from its previous path. Especially when the previous path was supported by at the very least half the majority.

His Ego will be his ultimate undoing.
# 146

We call it,@ #DAPLVeterans, ..The "Steve Bannon effect."
From The Psychonomic Society:

The norms of science and Presidential Executive Orders

Posted by: Stephan Lewandowsky

Last Friday was Holocaust Memorial Day, which falls on the day of the liberation of the Auschwitz Death Camp by Soviet troops in 1945. U.S. President Trump marked the occasion with a statement, although it omitted any specific mention of the 6 million Jews who perished in the Holocaust.

On the same day, Trump also signed an executive order that banned citizens of 7 mainly Islamic countries from entering the United States.

[...]

Under the headline “Trump’s Immigration Ban Is Already Harming American Science”, The Atlantic reported on a number of researchers who were barred from taking up posts in the U.S. as a consequence. There has been a growing number of responses from academic institutions to the President’s actions. For example, the Association of American Universities issued a statement noting that “the administration’s new order barring the entry or return of individuals from certain countries is already causing damage and should end as quickly as possible.”

Because of these clear implications for science, and because of the emerging responses from the scientific community, I asked the current Chair of the Society’s Diversity and Inclusion Committee, Valerie Reyna, for her views on the President’s actions. She replied as follows:

“By now many of you have heard about U.S. President Donald Trump’s executive order barring all immigration from seven majority-Muslim nations for 120 days, which the president signed Friday evening. Iran has responded by banning U.S. visitors. As Chair of the Diversity Committee, I must express my alarm at the potential implications for scientific progress and the basic freedoms on which that progress depends. I encourage everyone to think about ways in which research on stereotypes, bias, and fear can be brought to bear for the betterment of the U.S. and the nations around the world. Using the democratic institutions at our disposal, I encourage everyone to respond responsibly to any attempt to curtail basic freedoms of thought, speech, and travel. Today it is ‘them’; tomorrow it is us.”

The former Chair of the Diversity and Inclusion Committee, Janet Metcalfe, wrote to me to pass on a press release from "Academics Against Immigration Executive Order” concerning a letter that currently includes the signatures of over 7,000 academics including 40 Nobel Laureates. (And the list is growing: https://notoimmigrationban.com/.)

[...]

It is worth remembering the most well known and influential analysis of the norms of science provided by sociologist Robert Merton in 1942. Merton argued that the results of research should be the common property of the scientific community (‘‘communism’’); that knowledge should transcend racial, class, national, or political barriers (‘‘universalism’’); that scientists conduct research for the benefit of the scientific enterprise rather than for personal gain (‘‘disinterestedness’’); and that scientific claims must be exposed to critical scrutiny before being accepted (‘‘organized skepticism’’).

Recent research has confirmed that these norms are still internalized by the scientific community, and any attempt to impair the universalism of science therefore goes to the heart of who we are, what we stand for, and what we do. It is unsurprising that we now hear calls that "In the face of Trump’s Muslim ban, all academics have a responsibility to act."

[...]

Click here to read full article
Regarding Trump’s attacks on science:

In a tweet Former National Park Service Director John Jarvis give us his thoughts on climate change and "national policy".

Is this one working?
.
March for Science:
‏@ScienceMarchDC

The March for Science will take place on April 22, 2017. We hope to see you in D.C. and around the world!

March for Science new website: https://www.marchforscience.com/




Need to find a March for Science near you? Check out this #ScienceMarch list from @sciencemarchpdx!

Here's a member list for #solidarity marches in Europe https://twitter.com/Scientists4EU/lists/european- science-marches/members

Quoting 155. BaltimoreBrian:

A Scientists' March on Washington Is a Bad Idea Op-Ed column for the New York Times by Robert S. Young.
(snip)
The link takes me to the master page for Ricky's blog, not to the NYT. But I guess climate change protests are an endless loop, so ......
Quoting 156. CaneFreeCR:

The link takes me to the master page for Ricky's blog, not to the NYT. But I guess climate change protests are an endless loop, so ......
Thanks CaneFreeCR--you'd think I'd never linked an article before. Odd. It did the same thing on the Cat6 blog where it links back to Cat6, and on my blog, linking back to my blog. Hmmmm. Be interesting to see where the link links to this time. Better paste it below. Mind the gap in 'scientists'.

A Scientists' March on Washington Is a Bad Idea

https://www.nytimes.com/2017/01/31/opinion/a-scie ntists-march-on-washington-is-a-bad-idea.html?_r=0
Quoting 157. BaltimoreBrian:

Thanks CaneFreeCR--you'd think I'd never linked an article before. Odd. It did the same thing on the Cat6 blog where it links back to Cat6, and on my blog, linking back to my blog. Hmmmm. Be interesting to see where the link links to this time. Better paste it below. Mind the gap in 'scientists'.

A Scientists' March on Washington Is a Bad Idea

https://www.nytimes.com/2017/01/31/opinion/a-scie ntists-march-on-washington-is-a-bad-idea.html?_r=0
The link worked for me.

About the opinion: it's written by a scientist who seems credible to me. I don't think I agree with him, but I find myself much more in favor of public protest that I have been in the past.

What does anyone else think?

Or as Brian would say: Discuss.
RickyRood has created a new entry.