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About this blog: The Raucous Caucus shares the southpaw perspectives of this Boomer on the state of the nation, the world, and, sometimes, other stuff. I enjoy crafting it to keep current, and occasionally to rant on some issue I care about deeply...  (More)

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We’ll Always Have Paris

Uploaded: Jun 2, 2017

Without some putative 'bad hombre' to oppose, this President is lost. If one does not exist, it must be conjured. So it was that phantom demons were invoked to justify pulling the US out of the landmark Paris Accords on climate change.

Le petit orange thereby abdicated US world leadership on The Issue of the 21st century. The decision is as mystifying as it is stupid – it achieves no discernable US benefit, it does real damage here and abroad, and the dark forces it supposedly repels are ephemeral figments of a fevered paranoia.

To define terms, 195 countries (one-hundred ninety-five! – How many can you name?) agreed last year to non-binding, self-generated commitments to reduce their output of carbon pollution (greenhouse gases, notably CO2 and methane) by future target dates. Those rolled-up goals, as met, would reduce global temperature rise modestly, to an estimated 3 degrees Celsius (5.4 degrees F). The ultimate goal is to approach a 2-degrees C increase necessary to forestall catastrophic disruptions to sea level and long-term weather patterns.

In addition, first-world countries agreed to a kind of foreign aid to assist third-world nations ameliorate new emissions associated with their development. The US pledged some $3 billion, and has so far invested a third of that amount. $3B over several years seems like a lot, until you realize that the annual US non-military foreign aid budget is $42B, and that’s a mere 1% of a $4 trillion budget.

Instead of heeding overwhelming scientific consensus, important advisors (including the former CEO of Exxon-Mobil), forward-looking states and localities, and the Global 500 businesses and associated labor unions, the Prez instead focused on job losses related to fossilized industries like coal, and failed to correct that number by the gains in dawning sectors like renewables (fun fact: there are already 10X(!) as many jobs in solar and wind energy as in coal). In effect, he exported global economic and environmental leadership to others like China – together with all the millions of 21st century jobs that will surely follow.

He also found his bogey-hombre, as he spoke of dark forces handicapping the US economy in “foreign capitals and global activists that have long sought to gain wealth at our country’s expense - the same nations that have collectively cost America trillions of dollars through tough trade practices and, in many cases, lax contributions to our critical military alliance.” (here is the Trump speech, annotated for accuracy.)

On self-generated, non-binding commitments? That’s flatulent nonsense - could it be that this was really just a petulant ‘mooning’ of Chancellor Merkel and the rest of NATO and the G7 nations that implored him last week to stay the course? Is he still smarting from Mr. Macron’s youthfully vigorous handshake?

I wish I could dismiss such notions as absurd ... but I can't.

Fortunately, it takes four years to fully disengage from the Paris Accords, so there’ll be an opportunity for a voter-driven course re-correction. And although the Prez will immediately repudiate US actions in the interim and renege on the remaining $2B in aid, estimates are that some 2/3 of the US reduction commitment will happen despite his recalcitrance.

That’s because CA, NY and other states, as well as the many major industries importantly focused on sustainability will fill the void created by the federal abdication. In the same way that our fair little corner sets the de facto national standard on auto emissions because of this market’s sheer size, so too will a budding alliance of non-federal actors call the tune on climate.

So play it, Uncle Sam or not – over-and-over for new-times' sake. Fortunately, we really will always have Paris, or something very like it, despite the incumbent's worst efforts.

Comments

 +   3 people like this
Posted by rosalindr, a resident of San Ramon,
on Jun 2, 2017 at 3:28 pm

rosalindr is a registered user.

I think you covered everything on the issue and a lot better than the over the top "Tragic! Horrifying!" emails sent out by Democrat fundraisers.

Poor President Trump keeps making promises he can't keep and then doesn't know how to get out of them without his morning covefefe er, I think he meant coffee.

Roz


 +   2 people like this
Posted by rosalindr, a resident of San Ramon,
on Jun 2, 2017 at 3:38 pm

rosalindr is a registered user.

I'm sure wiser heads (meaning everyone) in Trump's family urged him to sign the accords. Melania's home country, Slovenia, signed the agreement in March of 2016.

Roz


 +  Like this comment
Posted by Tom Cushing, a resident of Alamo,
on Jun 2, 2017 at 3:59 pm

Here's looking at you, Roz! Have a good weekend.

I agree about the DNC fund-dunners: Web Link


 +   1 person likes this
Posted by Michael Austin, a resident of Pleasanton Meadows,
on Jun 2, 2017 at 4:14 pm

Michael Austin is a registered user.

Reading your blog. I envisioned dark forces unleashing phantom demons, rallying outside a barricaded white house, Trump inside franticly tweeting covfefe.

Disclaimer: My comment is intended to be satire.

One must be careful, Katy griffin is being scrutinized by the secret service.


 +   5 people like this
Posted by Tom Cushing, a resident of Alamo,
on Jun 2, 2017 at 4:25 pm

Michael: who you gonna call? Web Link ;-)


 +  Like this comment
Posted by Michael Austin, a resident of Pleasanton Meadows,
on Jun 2, 2017 at 7:22 pm

Michael Austin is a registered user.

Thank you.
That is funny!


 +   9 people like this
Posted by Jake Waters, a resident of Birdland,
on Jun 3, 2017 at 1:34 pm

Jake Waters is a registered user.

First, the Paris agreement allows the two biggest polluters (China and India) a pass for now, and as a bonus they receive a large amount of money a year. Secondly, regardless if you hate Trump or not, (because Tom, you go overboard with your negativity about the man and even go off point) man-made climate change is bad science, if any science at all. I challenge you to go to the Pleasanton library and check out four books in opposition of man-made climate change- I did. There you are going to find what Big Al, Obama, Michael Mann, and Di Caprio won't tell you about the subject. Big Al and NASA have for decades been prognosticating disasters that never seem to come true. This agreement is going to hurt the middle class and the poor. At what price are you willing to pay to bring down a (good) gas a few percentage points? The rich will go on as they always have. Wait until carbon credits hit your pocket book, and Big Al and Obama receive their share. Thirdly, the purveyors of lies are not emulating their sermon. Big Al, Obama, and Di Caprio all travel around the globe creating more CO2 then you will in a lifetime. Are they really serious? The anger comes from confronting their religion; the religion of man-made climate change. You have more to worry about with chem-trails than this. The climate always changes, and it changes everyday. The earth is very resilient.


 +  Like this comment
Posted by Cholo, a resident of Livermore,
on Jun 3, 2017 at 3:08 pm

I strongly believe that the meaning depends on what you mean by "is" is.

Gracias.




 +   3 people like this
Posted by Sam, a resident of Oak Hill,
on Jun 4, 2017 at 12:57 am

@Jake Waters: "The climate always changes, and it changes everyday. The earth is very resilient."

You started off in your post sounding half-way reasonable by questioning the plan of attack against global warming, but then you veered off into nutty outright denial of manmade Global Warming and then topped it all off with the two silly and ridiculous sentences of yours shown above. Yes, Jake, the earth's climate has always changed. It doesn't change "daily" - yet another stupid assertion by you due to your getting carried away by your own rhetoric - but it does change. In particular, the earth has gone through many warming and cooling cycles in the not so distant past due to glaciations which have occurred with a time cycle period of around 100,000 years. Coming out of those glaciations, the earth does indeed become warmer, but the rate of warming that we've seen in just the past 100 years is about 10-times larger than the "natural" rate of warming coming out of a glacial period.

Is the earth itself at risk? No, as you said yourself, it is very "resilient" - the earth itself is just a hunk of lifeless rock capable of withstanding extreme changes in temperature. It's poor living creatures like you, your wife, your children, your grandchildren, etc., who are NOT so "resilient". To survive, you all need to live in a very narrow range of temperatures or else you'll die. So don't bother parroting the nonsense of other climate deniers who say stupid things like "Well, the earth has been around for billions of years and its climate has been always changing so what?". Apparently, it has never occurred to those idiots who say that that for most of those billions of years the earth's surface temperatures and surface atmosphere were completely hostile to human life.


 +   3 people like this
Posted by American, a resident of Danville,
on Jun 4, 2017 at 7:21 am

Personally, except for the $3 billion dollar price tag, I would have supported the Paris climate change agreement. While climate change is real, unfortunately we have a clearer and more present danger in ISIS, and I would rather see that money spent on beefing up our Homeland Security and FBI terrorist fighting department. What is happening in London will happen in the US soon, if we don't step up our terrorist fighting capabilities. Leonard Decaprio is more likely to be injured by ISIS than climate change.


 +   3 people like this
Posted by Tom Cushing, a PleasantonWeekly.com blogger,
on Jun 4, 2017 at 8:42 am

Tom Cushing is a registered user.

Hi Jake:

Let’s take your points in order.

China and India: “free ride” is a talk radio soundbite: as always, reality is more complicated. Both countries (2.7B population, US 330 million) have relied very heavily on their abundant coal to fuel their recent, rapid development. https://www.nytimes.com/interactive/2017/06/01/climate/us-biggest-carbon-polluter-in-history-will-it-walk-away-from-the-paris-climate-deal.html For lots of reasons, they are backing away from it now https://www.nytimes.com/2017/06/02/world/asia/india-coal-green-energy-climate.html . Both have made Paris pledges to dramatically curtail future use – see graphic https://www.nytimes.com/interactive/2017/05/31/climate/trump-climate-paris-agreement.html . It is in the nature of reality that they must slow before they reverse - both are on-pace faster than their Paris commitments.

Trump “hatred”: there is a huge difference between routine left-right policy differences and an existential threat to American democracy. The incumbent administration is squarely in the latter category. Suit yourself, but I refuse to be a good German and either normalize the threat or go numb to it. It must be understood and resisted.

Bad science: climate change opposition is funded by those few who profit from it, and by officials whose campaign$ depend on those profits. Period. Everybody else – Everybody – understands that the threat is real. 195 countries cannot agree on anything – except this. The train left the ‘denial’ station long ago.

Demonizing activists: a perennial favorite deflection of know-nothings who would personalize anything, and want activists to weave their own clothes and walk to Paris. What nonsense. There ARE things everyone can do better https://www.nytimes.com/interactive/2015/12/03/upshot/what-you-can-do-about-climate-change.html , but the big ticket items are the ones on which Paris is focused.

Resilience of the earth: that’s true, but Mother Nature does not care a bit about our species. The dominion of we homo-saps is a split second in nature time. Our species IS the first ever that can choose its own obliteration. We need to choose better. Earth will survive – but us? Maybe not so much.
___

Hi Am: welcome, but don’t you think that’s a false choice – climate Or terror? That’s why I tried to put that $3B-over-years in perspective: the $1B we contributed is one-quarter of 1/1000 of the $4T federal budget. So, for every $10,000 you paid in taxes, less than a latte, or a gallon of gas went to that fund.

Another way to put it is that the US may be spending $100B/year http://money.cnn.com/2015/11/16/news/economy/cost-of-fighting-terrorism/index.html (non-military) on the terror fight – would 1% more


 +   5 people like this
Posted by Jake Waters, a resident of Birdland,
on Jun 4, 2017 at 10:40 am

Jake Waters is a registered user.

@Sam & Tom

Spoken like true liberals that believe at the altar of CNN and MSNBC. There you again Tom by going off point: your hatred for Trump. I'm not defending Trump, but unless you are willing to seek truth, and do as I suggested (visiting your local library) you will still go around and around chasing your ideology. Go ahead and tax the heck out of the rest of us for no specific gain. I have said my peace and I am comfortable with it. Go ahead and blast away, because I will not continue the thread. Have fun and have a good day.


 +   2 people like this
Posted by Sam, a resident of Oak Hill,
on Jun 4, 2017 at 11:10 am

@Jake Waters

I'm a scientist, Jake. I don't need to go to the local public library and check out your four cherry-picked, anti-AGW books there to get information on Global Warming. Although climate science is not my field, I can read and understand the original peer-reviewed scientific papers on the subject. Tell me, how does a non-scientist who gets his information from the selected, cherry-picked reading of four anti-AGW books at the downtown library come to believe that he's such an expert on the science of global warming that he can make grand pronouncements like "man-made climate change is bad science, if any science at all"? Do you honestly think that you have the scientific background and expertise to say things like that?


 +   4 people like this
Posted by Tom Cushing, a resident of Alamo,
on Jun 4, 2017 at 11:47 am

Jake: I don't mean to pile-on here, because I appreciate your reluctance to defend the indefensible. It's hard and thankless, as every advocate learns. Stating it in the first place is the problem, and I'm less sympathetic to your perpetuation of all that nonsense. As the philosopher Bueller, F., has been quoted: "It's over." Web Link

I take the Pleasanton library's willingness to stock (unspecified) denialist literature as a testament to the First Amendment (and hooray) - having nothing to do with whether the material is credible.

Here's an article from the nation's newspaper-of-record that details how the GOP descended into its current pit of ignorance. It's all about the campaign Benjamins and Koch Brothers threats to primary those who dare to pull their heads out of ... the sand. Web Link


 +   3 people like this
Posted by Tom Cushing, a resident of Alamo,
on Jun 4, 2017 at 1:32 pm

On more thought: let's put the degree of scientific certainty on the catastrophic consequences of no-intervention on the climate system at 95% (that's too low, but go with me here). If we as a species go ahead and take steps to ameliorate the risk, there is deep concern about the possibility of penalties if the 5-percenters are right and it was all unnecessary - slightly higher taxes, slightly lower job growth in certain limited sectors, etc.

Now, compare that to the penalties if the 95-percenters are right, but we do nothing. Sea-level swamps whole countries and a few states too, drought ruins ag output -> mass starvation, storms intensify, destroying property and hurting millions, the food chain is decimated as species go extinct, etc.

So, what to do: a 5% chance of wasted efforts and mild dislocations if we take action, vs. a 95% chance of climate cataclysm born of inaction? You decide.


 +   8 people like this
Posted by Denier, a resident of Downtown,
on Jun 4, 2017 at 5:15 pm

% of carbon dioxide released through plant and plant decomposition sources = 97%
% of carbon dioxide released through man-made sources = 3%

Look it up.

But we humans are responsible for the highest temperature increase known to mankind.

You climate religionists are so wacky and quaint.


 +   1 person likes this
Posted by Sam, a resident of Oak Hill,
on Jun 4, 2017 at 5:54 pm

@Denier

So your expert scientific conclusion is that since 3% "sounds like a small number" that it's insignificant? Is that the full depth of your expert analysis, or do you have anything to add to that simplistic, one sentence summary? Don't want to be accused of putting words in your mouth, so why don't you tell us all what percentage level of man-made CO2 you think would be a legitimate global warming concern? A man-made CO2 contribution of 10% of the earth's total CO2 ? 50% of the earth's total CO2? 100% ? 300% ? Come on, "Denier", since you obviously think that 3% is a laughably small number, why don't you tell us what level of man-made CO2 emissions you think would be a real, legitimate threat and explain how you arrived at your conclusion.

BTW, I'm going to also guess that according to your logic that you don't think that a carbon monoxide concentration in air of 800 ppm or 0.08% is a health concern because, after all, 0.08% is a really, really really small number, right? All those so-called experts who say that 0.08% of carbon monoxide in air is a lethal concentration must be real fools, right?


 +   7 people like this
Posted by Denier, a resident of Downtown,
on Jun 4, 2017 at 6:22 pm

Sam,

Since you claim to be a "scientist", why don't you tell us deniers what the proper concentration of Co2 should be in our atmosphere and from what or whom it should come from, hmmm?

Bet you can't.

And in the words of Rand Paul, show me the model that has gotten any prediction correct. Just one.

I'll repeat: I'll bet you can't.



 +   2 people like this
Posted by Sam, a resident of Oak Hill,
on Jun 4, 2017 at 6:35 pm

@Denier

Oh, no you don't. YOU showed up here on this forum with what you thought was a strong argument against man-made global warming, namely the fact that the man-made CO2 contribution is "only" about 3% of the natural total earth's CO2. YOU showed up and mocked the idea that such a small number could be responsible for the AGW. So now I'm calling YOU to back up your claims. Explain to us all why you think that 3% CO2 is not a concern. You do have some better explanation than "Well, 3% sounds like a really small number to me", don't you?

If you had showed up here mentioning the 3% CO2 figure and kindly asked if such an apparently small number could result in AGW, then I would have tried to accommodate you and explain the situation to you. But you didn't do that, did you? No, you showed up calling people who believe in AGW "wacky" based on your thinking that a 3% CO2 figure was laughably small. So it's up to you to back up your claim.


 +   10 people like this
Posted by Denier, a resident of Downtown,
on Jun 4, 2017 at 8:28 pm

Sam,

The whole point of my data, is to show you climate religionists that the numbers you seek are unobainable. Otherwise, man could quite conceivably control climate, and you, being a man of science, know very well we cannot do that.

I simply gave you the % of Co2 contribution by source. It was YOU that ask for additional data.

So Sam, you, through no fault of your own, have most excellently proved my point. Because if you had ANY data, you could have easily shown me to be incorrect.

But you don't have it, do you?


 +   1 person likes this
Posted by Sam, a resident of Oak Hill,
on Jun 4, 2017 at 11:19 pm

@Denier :"The whole point of my data, is to show you climate religionists that the numbers you seek are unobainable. Otherwise, man could quite conceivably control climate, and you, being a man of science, know very well we cannot do that."

You realize that what you wrote above makes absolutely no sense, right?


 +   7 people like this
Posted by Denier, a resident of Downtown,
on Jun 5, 2017 at 7:20 am

Sam,

It makes sense to anyone with even a smidgen of knowledge of the "scientific method".

I'll ask one more time: what is the correct composition and source of Co2 in earths atmosphere?

Just admit that as a "scientist", you don't know the answer.


 +   1 person likes this
Posted by Sam, a resident of Oak Hill,
on Jun 5, 2017 at 9:14 am

@Denier

First things first. You stormed onto this forum writing the following:

..............
"% of carbon dioxide released through plant and plant decomposition sources = 97%
% of carbon dioxide released through man-made sources = 3%"

"Look it up."

"But we humans are responsible for the highest temperature increase known to mankind."

"You climate religionists are so wacky and quaint."
........

In light of our discussion over this "3%" figure, do you still stand behind the words you wrote above including your somewhat snarky implication that it's obviously "wacky" to believe that a man-made CO2 contribution of about 3% could cause anthropogenic global warming (AGW), or do you now admit that the situation is more complicated than that and that a simple percentage figure like 3% CO2 is, in itself, rather meaningless unless it is put in the proper scientific context?

If you're not going to be honest and straight with me, then I don't see why I should bother entertaining your question since it would be a total waste of my time.



 +   6 people like this
Posted by Tom Cushing, a resident of Alamo,
on Jun 5, 2017 at 9:57 am

Let's assume this Q was asked in earnest by whoever 'denier' is (I only know of one). Let's also pretend that CO2 is all that matters. The published answer found via cursory googling is at least a decade old Web Link, and indicates that pre-industrial CO2 concentrations were never higher than 300 ppm, as the earth's 'resilience' maintained a balance.

Mankind's new contributions have overwhelmed that balance - it builds up every year. CO2 is now (2007) at 375 ppm, and rising fast.

Non-scientists might think of it as like interest on an investment - it may be a small increment of the whole, but if it builds up every year and never gets withdrawn, it really adds up (even without compounding). So, today's $100,000 investment at about 3% would be worth about $190,000 in 30 years (100K x 1.03 x 30, uncompounded). Uh-oh. Not quaint.


 +  Like this comment
Posted by Sam, a resident of Oak Hill,
on Jun 5, 2017 at 1:35 pm

@Tom Cushing

Apparently "small" numbers can be quite significant. If one is standing outside in air that is at a comfortable 72 Fahrenheit, but then the speeds of all those little air molecules around the person were to increase by a mere 3%, what would the air temperature then be? The temperature wouldn't increase by just 3% of 72 F, or just 2 F. No, one has to convert first to the scientific Kelvin temperature scale, calculate a 3% increase, and then convert back to Fahrenheit. If the molecules of air at 72 F were to increase their speeds by a "mere" 3%, then the air temperature would become a rather toasty 88 F.


 +   9 people like this
Posted by What About The Constitution?, a resident of Pleasanton Valley,
on Jun 5, 2017 at 1:53 pm

It's been more than a few decades since I took Civics at Amador, but doesn't the US Constitution require that "treaties" like this go to the Senate for approval?

Calling it an "Accord" doesn't really change the fact that President Obama, due to his inability (or unwillingness) to work with Congress, chose to use a non-binding method for this agreement.

While other countries' leaders can sign whatever they want, the U.S. Constitution is supposed to be the law of the land here.

Something as wide reaching and as significant as this should have been debated in the Senate and voted on. If the President and the Democrats felt so strongly about its importance, they should have worked together with the Republicans to come up with something acceptable to all.

Another point - didn't President Obama try something similar with cap and trade? And wasn't it when he had control of both houses of Congress? And didn't he have trouble getting the democrats to pass it?


 +   6 people like this
Posted by Denier, a resident of Downtown,
on Jun 5, 2017 at 3:40 pm

Climate Religionists,

Please give us the proper proportions for perfect climate for the following:

Elements of Climate:
-Solar radiation
-Ocean current
-Pressure systems
-Air masses
-Topography

Elements of Atmosphere
-Nitrogen
-Oxygen
-Argon
-Carbon Dioxide

I'm particularly interested in how you feel we can control "solar radiation" er...the Sun?

And lets remember that the blog author likes to compare balancing a checkbook to balancing ALL the above, because finance and climate science are exactly alike.


 +   5 people like this
Posted by Denier, a resident of Downtown,
on Jun 5, 2017 at 3:44 pm

What about the Constitution,

Exactly correct.

Paris was not passed by the Senate, therefore it wasn't statutory. Trump could do whatever he wanted.


 +   3 people like this
Posted by Tom Cushing, a resident of Alamo,
on Jun 5, 2017 at 5:15 pm

Danier: nobody (but Nobody), is assigned to do homework for you. If you've got a point to make, it's up to you to do so - as long as that point isn't your old reliable "you didn't answer thus-and-so - so I win! I WIN!" It's the process, not the content, that's always your worst enemy.

Also, consciously ridiculous miss-characterizations only reflect on you, and seriously try the patience and goodwill of the board.


 +   1 person likes this
Posted by Sam, a resident of Oak Hill,
on Jun 5, 2017 at 6:07 pm

@Tom Cushing

I think that he's trying to use a silly argument of "Scientists don't know everything, and so therefore they know nothing".

Yeah, total waste of time trying to reason with him.


 +   5 people like this
Posted by Denier, a resident of Downtown,
on Jun 5, 2017 at 7:41 pm

The point is, Tom, that you can't answer anything I've questioned because nobody can. I can't provide you with something that does not exist.

All predictions since the very first Earth Day, from global cooling, to commodity scarceness, to population explosion and implosion, to now global warming have been completely wrong.

Go ahead, look it up yourself: Web Link

Climate religionists continue to press "the models" without ever acknowledging that those same models have been proven to be incorrect; not one has been accurate both in the future, current or past.

Science is tough guys...but unless you can point out a model that has made correct predictions - and we know those models don't exist - then you're just displaying science ignorance.

Sorry but that is a fact, or as Al gore would say: an Inconvenient Fact.


 +   5 people like this
Posted by Denier, a resident of Downtown,
on Jun 5, 2017 at 7:46 pm

Sam,

"I think that he's trying to use a silly argument of "Scientists don't know everything, and so therefore they know nothing"."

I just happen to be old enough to remember when salt and eggs were considered poison and cigarettes were considered healthy.

Theories change...research matters.

You being a "scientist" should know that nothing is ever static.




 +   4 people like this
Posted by Michael Austin, a resident of Pleasanton Meadows,
on Jun 5, 2017 at 8:17 pm

Michael Austin is a registered user.

No matter the climate, animals adjust to it.
Elk move to higher elevations during the summer, and lower elevations during the winter.

Same with the plains people 200 hundred years ago.
They moved with the climate to where they were most comfortable.

Today, mankind is stuck with a mortgage or other debt, they cannot move.
They will remain fixed in their location and what climate has for them.


 +  Like this comment
Posted by Sam, a resident of Oak Hill,
on Jun 5, 2017 at 8:38 pm

@Michael Austin: "No matter the climate, animals adjust to it. Elk move to higher elevations during the summer, and lower elevations during the winter. Same with the plains people 200 hundred years ago....."

Oh, yeah. Good point. Same with the dinosaurs 67 million years ago. The climate suddenly changed and .......Oh, wait.

You're making it too easy for me, fella.

:-)


 +   3 people like this
Posted by Carl Jennings, a resident of Canyon Meadows,
on Jun 5, 2017 at 9:18 pm

The dinosaurs obviously should have crafted a meaningless accord regarding
wayward asteroid strikes


 +   1 person likes this
Posted by Tom Cushing, a resident of Alamo,
on Jun 5, 2017 at 10:19 pm

@ Carl: The dinos could have made such an Accord, in just the same way that we can magically wish global warming away. Besides, everybody knows it wasn't an asteroid: Web Link

@ Michael: Web Link It's a great Pulitzer-winning book, except there's a typo on page 107, fn 3. So I'm skeptical about the whole thing.


 +  Like this comment
Posted by Michael Austin, a resident of Pleasanton Meadows,
on Jun 6, 2017 at 7:06 am

Michael Austin is a registered user.

What ever it was, asteroid, volcanic gasses.
The earth recovered.


 +   2 people like this
Posted by Tom Cushing, a resident of Alamo,
on Jun 6, 2017 at 10:04 am

@ Michael: what's that Native American saying: "We don't inherit the world from our ancestors - we borrow it from our children?"

So, don't trash the rental unit. The earth will recover. Will your/my progeny be around to see it?


 +   1 person likes this
Posted by Sam, a resident of Oak Hill,
on Jun 6, 2017 at 11:07 am

Well, it's nice to know that whatever happens to mankind and all other life on this planet, at least my pet rock will survive.


 +  Like this comment
Posted by Michael Austin, a resident of Pleasanton Meadows,
on Jun 6, 2017 at 5:08 pm

Michael Austin is a registered user.

Tom:
We have to maintain it for them to take over, that may include colonizing the moon, mars, etc. Climate change is a slow moving event, not like an asteroid, or volcanic eruption, or earth quake, those events happen quickly and without much warning. The Al Cores will be with us forever, we have time to continue to ignore the Al Cores.

We all need to be more concerned with North Korea, the middle east, Putin in the Kremlin. They are a greater threat to civilization then climate change will ever be.


 +   1 person likes this
Posted by Sam, a resident of Oak Hill,
on Jun 6, 2017 at 5:52 pm

That was a pretty fast change going from "The Earth will be OK" to "All right, the Earth won't be OK but I'm getting the heck out of here."


 +   3 people like this
Posted by Bayareamom, a resident of San Ramon,
on Jun 7, 2017 at 2:09 pm

I decided to perform a little due diligence on this climate change issue and came up w/quite a few good arguments AGAINST the theory that ALL climate change is man-made (which is really the crux of the matter). Here are a couple of good videos some of you may want to view:

Climatologist Judith Curry's statements on climate change:

Web Link

Curry's testimony before Commerce, Science and Transportation Subcommittee:

Nobel Laureate Physic's lecture re climate change:

Web Link

AND

Web Link

..."Consensus is invoked only in situations where the science is not solid enough. Nobody says the consensus of scientists agrees that E=mc2. Nobody says the consensus is that the sun is 93 million miles away. It would never occur to anyone to speak that way."


 +   2 people like this
Posted by Kim, a resident of San Ramon,
on Jun 7, 2017 at 2:20 pm

Caltech lecture by Michael Crichton re climate change:

Web Link

..."The late Philip Handler, former president of the National Academy of Sciences, said that “Scientists best serve public policy by living within the ethics of science, not those of politics. If the scientific community will not unfrock the charlatans, the public will not discern the difference" science and the nation will suffer."


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Posted by Sam, a resident of Oak Hill,
on Jun 7, 2017 at 3:16 pm

@Bayareamom

If you honestly want to do "due diligence" you should take into account scientific opinions from both sides of the argument. Airing the opinions of some scientists who represent the minority view (about 5%) while neglecting to point out the opposing views of the majority of scientists who have expertise in climate science (about 95%) doesn't sound very balanced to me.

Oh, and the reason nobody now says "the consensus of scientists agrees that E=mc2" is that E=mc2 is not a political hot potato subject and so it's really not necessary to point out the fact that E=mc2 enjoys a large support among scientists. If, on the other hand, E=mc2 were to someday and somehow become a political hot potato and come under dispute then, yes, I and other scientists would indeed have to remind you that E=mc2 is supported by the vast majority of scientists.


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Posted by Sam, a resident of Oak Hill,
on Jun 7, 2017 at 3:20 pm

@Kim

"Michael Crichton" the science fiction writer? When did he become an authority on global warming? You do know the difference between "science" and "science fiction", right?


 +   6 people like this
Posted by MichaelB, a resident of Pleasanton Meadows,
on Jun 8, 2017 at 8:56 am

<So it was that phantom demons were invoked to justify pulling the US out of the landmark Paris Accords on climate change.>

No, it's economic growth, jobs, and putting the needs our nation first. Slowing down our economy with energy taxes/mandates to use less from international bureaucrats is the last thing the United States needs after 8 years of weak growth/poor results under Barack Obama's "fundamental transformation" policies. Regulations are not free. Consumers/businesses have to pay for them and that means less disposable income being available/fewer people employed.

Other nations "pledging" to reduce emissions means little, if anything. Their leaders are not going to slow down their own economies/put millions of their own citizens out of work because left wing groups want them to "for the environment". But somehow we "need" to (even after our emissions have declined because of the increased usage of natural gas) and have to "invest" billions in a so called climate fund when the nation is already trillions of dollars in debt.

The phantom part was Obama not sending this "accord" to the US Senate for approval - because he probably knew the votes were not there. Someone might have actually questioned how much it was going to cost our nation and what benefits would have been realized - other than just feeling good by claiming we were "saving the planet" by agreeing to it.


 +   7 people like this
Posted by MichaelB, a resident of Pleasanton Meadows,
on Jun 8, 2017 at 10:13 am

<Trump “hatred": there is a huge difference between routine left-right policy differences and an existential threat to American democracy. The incumbent administration is squarely in the latter category. Suit yourself, but I refuse to be a good German and either normalize the threat or go numb to it. It must be understood and resisted.>


Exactly what has Trump done/proposed, other than to dismantle or oppose what liberals/progressives want, that is a 'threat to American democracy"? Enforcing immigration laws, supporting the 2nd Amendment, lowering taxes, nominating judges that reference/defer to the Constitution, reducing spending/debt levels, addressing problems caused by Barack Obama's health care law, increasing defense spending, increasing national security measures to confront terrorists, etc?

What do we need to "understand" and "resist" about these items/issues? And why do we need to go back to what we had been doing previously under the Obama Administration? Or doing more of the same if Hillary Clinton was elected?


 +   3 people like this
Posted by Truther, a resident of Walnut Creek,
on Jun 8, 2017 at 11:04 pm

Not to worry MicaelIB. Trump won big today. Really big. Po lil' Tom Cushing must be hitting the sauce about now. Great day for the rebublic!


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Posted by Sam, a resident of Oak Hill,
on Jun 8, 2017 at 11:45 pm

@Truther

You're joking, right? BTW, the Tweeter-In-Chief seems to have gone quiet as a result of the shellacking by Comey. Almost 48 hours of dead silence. That's like a new record for him.


 +   4 people like this
Posted by Truther, a resident of Walnut Creek,
on Jun 9, 2017 at 12:14 am

@ Sam. The left did not get what they want, did they? They, you, screamed from everywhere that Trump was with the Russians, and Comey was going to deliver his head on a silver platter. It backfired on the left. Now, all eyes turn towards Lynch and Comey's refusal to do nothing in regards to Hillary's emails and Bill meeting with Lynch on the Tarmac during the "matter," uh, I mean "investigation." If anything, Lynch obstructed justice.

So, Comey refused to take action against Lynch and Trump, apparently. Wow. Oh, and least we not forget about Comey admitting to leaking information to a college buddy so he could pass it along to the NY Times. Yeah, boy, what a credible guy. And BTW, even though Comey was no longer a federal employee at the time he leaked the information, he still should have known better.


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Posted by Sam, a resident of Oak Hill,
on Jun 9, 2017 at 7:25 am

@Truther

As fascinating and amusing as the subject of Comey's attack on Donald Trump is, and as much as I hope that Tom or someone starts a thread on that topic, I'm afraid that here the topic is the Paris Accords and Global Warming. You know, that thing that everyone in the world believes in except for the Syrian government and American conservatives.


 +   4 people like this
Posted by MichaelB, a resident of Pleasanton Meadows,
on Jun 9, 2017 at 7:37 am

<In addition, first-world countries agreed to a kind of foreign aid to assist third-world nations ameliorate new emissions associated with their development. The US pledged some $3 billion, and has so far invested a third of that amount. $3B over several years seems like a lot, until you realize that the annual US non-military foreign aid budget is $42B, and that's a mere 1% of a $4 trillion budget.>

Sounds like a kind of slush fund with no end in sight. Pledging toward exactly what final, budgeted amount and over what period of time? When will people realize that third-world nations will have exactly what kind of incentives to accelerate their development (with their own resources) when others are providing the "investments" (free money)?

Expect the usual response from the supporters of this when things don't go as planned - being accused of "not caring" if you disagree with "investing" billions of dollars more to "save the planet". We can always look forward to the usual method of liberals/progressives to generate public support for the United States to continue "investing" - it won't seem like a lot because we'll get the "1%" to pay for it. It's only "fair" that they should do so and we'll get more "income equality" too!


 +   1 person likes this
Posted by Tom Cushing, a resident of Alamo,
on Jun 9, 2017 at 7:43 am

Michael: I'd refer you to my prior blog and comments for why I believe he is a uniquely dangerous blend of incompetence, impulsiveness, ignorance and evil - not necessarily in that order, day-to-day. Plenty of evidence cited there. I also think you need to separate con-job promises from results - none of the things you mention has Actually Occurred, and most of them are internally inconsistent. You have been 'had.' Sad.

Truther: I'm not sure how a credible accusation of Obstruction of Justice is a 'win.' Nor is an indication that le petit orang is not (yet) a target of a probe that's just getting underway a 'vindication.' That is not how these things work, from the little fish to the big ones. You are right to celebrate while you can.

Anyway, fellas, I've previously posted my theory that his demise will be orchestrated Not by the disorganized Dems, but by the Koch Brothers - they financed these rare majorities, and they're seeing their big investment squandered by the incompetence of an Administration that can't find its butt with both hands. I know they're impatient for actual results, and I think they prefer the conventional dullard Pence - and They call the GOP tune. We'll see.


 +   4 people like this
Posted by MichaelB, a resident of Pleasanton Meadows,
on Jun 9, 2017 at 8:29 am

<Michael: I'd refer you to my prior blog and comments for why I believe he is a uniquely dangerous blend of incompetence, impulsiveness and ignorance. Plenty of evidence cited there. I also think you need to separate con-job promises from results - none of the things you mention has Actually Occurred, and most of them are internally inconsistent. You have been 'had.' Sad.>

The same accusations/claims could be made about Barack Obama. You know the candidate in 2008 that people (after regularly being accused of being "prejudiced" by media outlets) pointed out he lacked any management/executive experience? And represented the far left of the political spectrum?

Wanting the nation "fundamentally transformed", "spreading the wealth around" as an economic plan, I'll "negotiate" with rogue/terrorist sponsoring nations like Iran, "I've got a pen and a phone" when Congress didn't give him what he wanted, delaying implementation/not enforcing provisions of his own health care law, repeatedly lying to the public about "keeping your plan and doctor", blaming a terrorist attack in Libya on a video, etc? Does any of this sound like "competence" to you? Isn't it "dangerous" for someone to spend more time worrying about climate change vs. terrorism? How is "fundamentally transforming" the nation consistent with defending the Constitution? "Hope and change" was not a "con-job"?

Trump hasn't been in office long - and it remains to be seen what he'll eventually accomplish. If he doesn't deliver campaign promises, if people perceive him as just another establishment politician, and the economy tanks - his party will lose seats in midterm elections and he won't get reelected. As far as being "had" why did people want Hillary Clinton elected doing more of the failed status quo and expecting different results? Because she was a woman? It was "her turn"? Did people really think that more things would be "free" if Bernie Sanders got elected? Sad.


 +   4 people like this
Posted by Truther, a resident of Walnut Creek,
on Jun 9, 2017 at 9:01 am

@Cushing. Not celebrating here, Mr. Cushing. In fact, I think it is rather sad that you, like so many people on the left, would rather see the president fail than succeed. You still can't get over the fact that you lost. How desperate you were to hear Comey say DJT obstructed justice. Don't happen. Nada.

This whole thing regarding Comey was your "We got 'em now" moment. Well guess what? You failed. You failed miserably, I might add. The fact is, Trump broke no laws. And Mr. Mueller will not find during his "investigation," the " matter" of DJT and the Russians be to nothing more than the sound of crickets. But hey, keep spewing your hate. It looks good on you.


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Posted by Tom Cushing, a resident of Alamo,
on Jun 9, 2017 at 9:38 am

Fellas: suffice it to say that as I commented to open my immediately prior blog, the world can be unrecognizable, depending on whose media you rely-on. The view from here I've stated, and will continue to do so (no worries there, t'r).

Meanwhile your boy's approval rating is in the mid-30s% ... and I'm guessing it'll take another hit after yesterday. You can bet that The Kochs are not amused. Tick-tock.


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Posted by Sam, a resident of Oak Hill,
on Jun 9, 2017 at 9:46 am

@Truther

It's true that Comey's testimony against Trump falls short of proving "obstruction of justice", but if you think that Donald Trump has come out of this matter smelling like roses you're just completely deluded. Even the writers over at the conservative National Review say that Trump's conduct was disturbing and inappropriate, although they also said it stopped short of "obstruction of justice". As Tom just said, expect Trump's approval ratings to drop still further. No one sees this matter as a "victory" for Trump except for people who have completely blinded themselves.


 +   3 people like this
Posted by American, a resident of Danville,
on Jun 9, 2017 at 4:02 pm

Tom: You may not agree with VP Mike Pence's views on abortion and many other issues, but calling him a " conventional dullard" is off base and ignorant. By all accounts, people who know him from both sides of the aisle agree he is an intelligent, bright, and deeply religious man of faith. I know to many liberals, being an outspoken believer in Christ is an alleged sign of ignorance and being a dullard, but some of the brightest and most educated people I have met over the years are Jesuit priests, and those parishioners who regularly attend Mass or church services. By the way, to most in the legal field, Indiana University School of Law where he graduated from, is a well respected law school( at least as respected as Illinois University of Law, your alma mater)

I also think you wrongly assume the Koch Brothers are calling the shots in DC. As I previously noted in your prior blog, according to the Washington Times, Trump's campaign money donations was largely made up of small doners who donated less than $200 each,(unlike Hillary whose donations were from large contributors), and Superpacks donated much more money to Hillary than Trump. There are many things you can attack Trump on, but factually he raised less money, spent less money, and got more of his donations from mom and pop doners, while Hillary was funded by Superpacks and big donors. You may not like Trump, but unlike the Democrats big donors aren't telling him what to, and he is less influenced by big doners than Democrats are in DC.


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Posted by Sam, a resident of Oak Hill,
on Jun 9, 2017 at 4:59 pm

@American

Don't know much about Pence, but you have to admit that he got the rug pulled out from under his feet more than once by none other than Trump. Certainly did make Pence look foolish. In Pence's defense, though, I concede that that's not really a Pence issue but that anyone who works closely with Trump is bound to eventually be made to look foolish by Trump. That's just the natural hazard of working alongside someone who never thinks before he speaks.


 +   2 people like this
Posted by American, a resident of Danville,
on Jun 9, 2017 at 5:16 pm

Per US News & World Report, 2017, Pence's Indiana University School of Law is rated #25 best law school in country. University of Illinois Law School is rated #40.


 +   3 people like this
Posted by Michael Austin, a resident of Pleasanton Meadows,
on Jun 9, 2017 at 5:50 pm

Michael Austin is a registered user.

Regarding the abortion door opening:

Nancy Pelosi identifies herself as an ardent Catholic, Nancy Pelosi supports abortion. The Catholic church teachings defines abortion as murder.

Since the very beginning, first century, Catholic church teachings defined abortion as murder.

Nancy Pelosi is living in sin because she is not following Catholic church teachings. Nancy Pelosi, literally and figuratively, sold her soul to the devil, in order to have her position of power in Washington.


 +   3 people like this
Posted by Tom Cushing, a PleasantonWeekly.com blogger,
on Jun 10, 2017 at 7:29 am

Tom Cushing is a registered user.

Am:

1 - my view may be disagreeable to you, but it's not ignorant, nor is it based mainly on his faith. The latter is irrelevant to public life, except when it interferes with his secular duties (Pence IS guilty of that, in my view). It is based primarily on reviews of his time as IN governor, during which he became so deeply unpopular on both sides of the aisle that he was virtually assured of not being re-elected in a pretty Red state. Hence the then-longshot VP possibility was a better option. If he gets kicked upstairs, the Peter Principle will have been vindicated.

2 - The Koch Brothers do not like/did not finance Trump - but they DID purchase the Congressional majorities, esp the House. As I posted last time, their Congressional minions will do their bidding and inform the Don that he's lost them and will be impeached - like happened with Nixon.

3 . counselor, are you really, Really equating law schools with IQ, and presenting reputation evidence 40 years post-graduation? Every college, even citadels like USF, graduates dullards. That's how guys like me earn their money - separating the wheat from the chaff. I have interviewed Hah-vuds that I would never consider hiring.

4 - Your odd evidence does recall a story: in the 1970s, when the Illinois law Dean Cribbet announced that local professor Plager was leaving to become Dean at Indiana, he joked that it was the kind of move that improved Both schools. At the time, he was right. :-)

FYI, I have closed the thread. I do not have time to babysit it as regards a poster whose routine poor behavior has made him unwelcome here.

Anonymous posters might recognize that when you take the time and effort to develop a blog with your name on it, it is exceptionally annoying and unacceptable to have others crash and trash the comments process. It's about politics, and Raucous is welcome - adolescent misbehavior, not so much.


Sorry, but further commenting on this topic has been closed.

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