Posts

Showing posts from 2015

That Fading Christmas Spirit

Image
The War Over Christmas


The rightest of rightwing memes is "the war on Christmas," allegedly being waged by the godless left. Maybe that's why I just can't whip up the spirit.

There must be a war going on somewhere around this sacred holiday, 'cause something has almost done in my Christmas spirit.  This is serious.  That lovely warm glow that has always accompanied the season and fogged out some of the distress of everything from shopping to watching the news has abandoned me this year.  First time ever.

Maybe it is the news itself.  Sixty million folks displaced by war, famine, terror and the like.

That would be about the population of England or France, or Italy. When I think of all those folks, the kids, the grandparents, the moms and dads, so totally out of luck, it makes a trip to Target seem, I don't know, un-spiritual.

And politics! Great heavens, what craziness abounds from the Republicans. They have become untethered from facts, science and ... trut…

Lost Faith in Forbes

Image
Forbes Magazine was Just a Billionaire's Fan Boy

…But I still thought they had some decent financial reporting, some telling investigations and a tendency to be tough when it counted.  That was their "image" in my wee brain for years.  I thought Steve Forbes was a rightist dweeb, but I didn't hold that against his magazine.

(source) Then they hired "Smiley" James Taylor (here supporting Rick Perry)
(senior fellow for environment policy at the Heartland Institute*) to write blatant denialist pieces on climate change.  He's a slick trickster who writes pseudo-science with the total confidence of a con man selling you a pyramid scheme.  Here's an example:

He reports on a NOAA study from 2013 about the relationship between extreme weather and global warming, and headlines it:
NOAA Report Destroys Global Warming Link To Extreme Weather …cherry picking such paragraphs as this:  "Adding additional emphasis to the NOAA publication’s findings, scientists r…

The Slo-Mo Trainwreck Continues

Image
The World is Having an Extinction Event
But We Live too Fast to See It.

Permian Extinction - A quarter billion years ago.  75% of all Animal, 95% of all sea creatures and plants wiped out.  Took perhaps a two to three million years to happen.  The "big finish," the eruption of the Siberian Flats.
[source]
Even this humongous catastrophe took maybe a million years to finish the kill off.


Dinosaur Extinction - 66 million years ago.  All the dinos plus about half of plant life and sea creatures wiped out.  Took perhaps half a million years to happen.  The monster rock that hit Earth (Chicxulub Crater in the Gulf of Mexico), and some others, plus the Deccan Flats eruptions in India were the villains.










[source][source]


We Probably Wouldn't Have Noticed.  If there happened to be humans around (there weren't) in the middle of either of those giant extinctions, things would be changing so slowly that even if you lived to be a hundred, things would, when you died, look pretty much h…