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May 12 2011

RCimT: Climate roundup

When it comes to climate science, it’s best to get your information from climate scientists.

On the one-year anniversary of the Deepwater Horizon disaster famously not-foretold by Jamie Darkstar of Darkstar Astrology, the US House Republicans have decided to mark the occasion with a new drill-baby-drill campaign. Meanwhile, this past year has all but sealed the deal on the verity of anthropogenic global warming. It’s happening, it’s been happening for decades, we’ve been screaming about it for decades, and nobody fucking cares that we’re driving right off this cliff.

Well, there are some minor victories in the fight, such as Obama’s move to refund the weather satellites that the GOP defunded as an “unnecessary expense”. And Senator Brown’s move to end the taxpayer subsidy of oil companies, who even without these subsidies would have made over a trillion dollars in profits in the last decade, mostly owing to the extreme gouging consumers see at the pumps. We already pretty much know they’re setting their prices to exactly what the market will allow, and if they jack the price up because they lose their taxpayer subsidies then you’ll see the same sort of ratcheting-back of gas consumption that started happening a few years ago. They’ll then lower the price again to keep everyone hooked, to keep everyone from weening themselves off their gas guzzlers.

And as usual, the enemies in this fight are easy to spot. Just look for the people who call necessary spending “wasteful”, and unnecessary corporate socialism handouts sacrosanct. While the Republicans rail on and on about the debt, demanding that “everyone feel the pain” of certain cutbacks, they’re simultaneously the ones giving big tax breaks to the robber barons and taking away the social programs that keep the poor from going bankrupt. The rich do not become rich in a vacuum. Economies thrive when the money is continuously cycled. It’s not about welfare or hand-outs, it’s about preventing the pyramid from being so top-heavy that it collapses. But these same folks are the ones who disbelieve all the science that shows we’re heading off that global warming cliff, so it’s no surprise they don’t care for the reality of economy, preferring instead to worship their “invisible hand” deity.

Oh how I wish I ruled this world. Maybe then some common sense would seep into humankind’s governance for once.

4 comments

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  1. 1
    George W.

    Yeah,
    I recently had a FB war with two climate deniers. Of course, the first thing one of them said was “Are you a scientist?”, to which I responded “No. Are you? Oh, and I’m glad you put stock in the argument from authority, since all but a handful of climate scientists doubt AGW. Thank you for proving my point for me.” SRSLY.
    Oh, and my local paper had a letter to the editor insisting that because the “last ice” date for Lake Nipissing has been in April or May for the last 100 years, that that simply puts AGW to bed. Yep. Cuz science predicts that AGW should cause thaws in February. Thanks for coming out.

    It seems that people can be led to believe anything in deference to evidence and fact, so long as it is presented pithy and forceful.

  2. 2
    Dan J

    I think there are a lot of people who expect the Universe to behave in very simplistic ways. If it did, then all of their “common sense” interpretations, like the last ice date for Lake Nipissing that George pointed out, would be perfectly accurate. Unfortunately, for them, the Universe isn’t that simple. The Earth is not flat, nor does the Sun revolve around it. Simplistic interpretations of what our basic senses tell us is often wrong in spectacular ways.

    Why be simple?

  3. 3
    Ben Zvan

    I suppose if they defund the weather satellites they can actually say “nobody saw it coming” next time there’s a hurricane.

  4. 4
    Jason Thibeault

    George: hilarious. My response is, and always will be, “despite global warming, there will still be seasons. The extra degree in temperature means more weather, not fewer seasons.”

    Dan: Hear hear. Nuance is way more difficult to get into a sound bite though, and that’s all some people have the attention span for.

    Ben: I would not be surprised in the least if the Republicans’ secondary goal — you know, other than taking from the poor and giving to the rich — is to provide plausible deniability for the next time a Repub is in office and completely cocks up their response to a disaster.

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