Open Thread Plus Holiday Cartoon by Joe Romm Posted on December 24, 2011 at 8:37 am 4Share This 12Tweet This Share this: "Open Thread Plus Holiday Cartoon" Share: A cyber-penny for your thoughts. « Gingrich Defends South Carolina’s Decision To Fly Confederate Flag At Capital The Ghost of Climate Yet to Come » Close Like Climate Progress on Facebook Don't show this to me again 41 Responses to Open Thread Plus Holiday Cartoon chris wiegard says: December 24, 2011 at 8:48 am ah, dry humor… For me, Belief if Miracles does seem to be present in the thinking of some denialists. After all, it would be a miracle for the world climatology community to engage in a planetwide science hoax without convincing evidence of collusion showing up through the determined but ineffectual efforts of denialist hackers. And it would also take a miracle for that mountain of climate research demonstrating the existence and the functionality of global warming to actually be wrong. Multiple miracles- no, that does not pass peer review- it does not even pass the Common Sense test. William P says: December 25, 2011 at 1:27 am For fifty years Deniers that cigarettes caused cancer won out. Deniers that guns kill people win despite our high rate of murder and violence from guns (now numbering 200,000,000 in America). No, only a “Pearl Harbor” big event caused by global warming will bring any attention and action. The Pine Island ice sliding off Antarctica or a massive, sudden loss of crops due to a worldwide heat wave might do it. But deniers and common people can adjust to the slow change (not terms of geologic time) we see now. This scenario has probably played out many times before in the universe on other “earths” which is why we hear no radio signals from space. Ray Kondrasuk says: December 25, 2011 at 2:07 am William, that reminds me of a quip I heard years ago: How do we know that there’s life out there that’s intelligent? Well, they haven’t come here, have they? Dennis Tomlinson says: December 24, 2011 at 8:57 am I have no problem with this blog showing a picture of the devious and genocidal Senator Inhoff, and with the upward trending curve where a downtrend is what’s desired. But, respectfully, can we get rid of the dog with a gun pointed toward its head. It find it disturbing. climatehawk1 says: December 24, 2011 at 9:20 am - Join citizensclimatelobby.org (in the US and Canada, at least). – NYT has a story today on how ski areas in NE US, Colorado, Utah, are suffering due to lack of snow. In re New England, it mentions “week after maddening week of unusually balmy weather,” but not a peep about global warming: http://www.nytimes.com/2011/12/23/us/many-ski-areas-lack-an-essential-ingredient.html climatehawk1 says: December 24, 2011 at 10:13 am Oops, apologies, that was actually in yesterday’s (Friday’s) paper, for those who may look for it in print. climatehawk1 says: December 24, 2011 at 10:52 am So, here is a tweet I posted (from @tgrayvt): Plz connect dots w/ #climate on such stories RT @abbygoodnough: Many #Ski Areas Lack Essential Ingredient: nyti.ms/rI2CwR . Anyone with a Twitter account welcome to join me … dick smith says: December 25, 2011 at 8:38 pm I agree. They’ve got it right. prokaryotes says: December 27, 2011 at 7:11 am In Europe this season dubbed “Winter”, is actually much like “Spring”. A lot of birds chatter outside, 2-digit temperatures and in parts of Europe record breaking storms and elsewhere ofc… Storm Dagmar Cuts Power, Causes Damage Across Nordic Region The storm Dagmar swept across the Nordic countries with Hurricane-strength winds, cutting power and Norwegian natural gas exports as well as damaging buildings and halting train traffic. http://www.businessweek.com/news/2011-12-27/storm-dagmar-cuts-power-causes-damage-across-nordic-region.html Gregory Purcell says: December 24, 2011 at 9:22 am My new favorite joke (which I made up) ; when-ever I talk about flooding, or the drought or a freak blizzard or lack of snow with my conservative friends is to say: “Well I blame the Evil Al Gore for inventing Global Warming. It’s its all part of his war on Christmas.” They want to agree with me, and blame him for anything wacky thing, but in that case to do so a means…. prokaryotes says: December 27, 2011 at 7:21 am I guess inventing the internets was part of teh plot too. lol catman306 says: December 24, 2011 at 9:44 am Goodbye ‘Shop Til You Drop’ Mentality: Renegade Band of Economists Call for ‘Degrowth’ Economy The road to prosperity and happiness doesn’t lead to the shopping mall, as most economists would have you believe. Since then, evidence has continued to mount that humanity may be reaching the end of the road built by our Western industrial model with its assumptions that natural resources, and nature itself, are super-abundant. A few of the problems that have garnered headlines include the following: * Critical minerals are on the decline. * Experts worry that declining “energy quality” threatens growth, as the world’s dwindling fossil fuel stores require more effort to extract. * Many countries including the world’s biggest grain producers — the U.S., India and China — are depleting their aquifers to keep bringing in the harvests. * Carbon emissions are reaching a dangerous level. * 2011 broke the record for extreme weather with 12 events costing $1 billion or more to clean up. * Plant and animal species are going extinct at unprecedented rates. * World population is growing and so is hunger. * We have already exceeded some important planetary boundaries. “One reason growth doesn’t work is we’ve underestimated the ecological cost of growth, and overestimated the benefits of growth,” Herman Daly says. http://www.alternet.org/economy/153553/goodbye_%27shop_til_you_drop%27_mentality%3A_renegade_band_of_economists_call_for_%27degrowth%27_economy/?page=entire thanes says: December 24, 2011 at 2:29 pm Or to tweak my earlier post ( and I know it is both Christmas Eve and this messaging is pretty inflammatory so I’d understand if the moderator may not be looking at this, or chooses not to let this through) [JR: The latter.] Yvan Dutil says: December 24, 2011 at 3:23 pm Well, in Catholic Church, miracle, while not peer reviewed, got examined by a committee of medical expert presided by a devil advocate. This is not peer review but a trial. Spike says: December 24, 2011 at 3:44 pm Fish populations are changing around the UK due to global warming: “The north-east Atlantic has been described as the cauldron of climate change, because the region has warmed four times as fast as the global average over the last three decades. The North Sea is now 1.3°C warmer than it was in the early eighties.” Other species are also on the move on land “Climate change is driving animals and plants towards the poles and to higher altitudes up to three times faster than previously appreciated, researchers have discovered. In one extreme example, the comma butterfly has moved 220 kilometres northwards from central England to Edinburgh in Scotland in just two decades. In another, a moth has moved 67 metres uphill on Mount Kinabalu in Borneo. In the UK around 20 years ago, the Cetti’s warbler, a small brown bird, could be heard only around the Kent marshes. But today, it lives as far north as Anglesey and the Humber Estuary – 150 kilometres north of Kent. The scientists found that on average, birds, mammals, reptiles and plants have moved to higher ground at a rate of 12.2 metres per decade. And they’ve moved to higher latitudes – closer to the poles – by 17.6 kilometres per decade. ‘This is the same as animals and plants moving away from the equator at around 20 cm per hour, every hour of the day, every day of the year. This has been going on for the last 40 years and is set to continue until at least the end of this century,’ says, Chris Thomas, professor of conservation biology from the University of York” http://www.nerc.ac.uk/publications/planetearth/2011/winter/win11-news.pdf Merrelyn Emery says: December 24, 2011 at 5:00 pm Well the silly season is in full swing here and everyone is hoping for a disaster free holiday so time to say ‘thank you’ to the climate scientists and all those who are doing everything they can to get us out of this mess, ME Merrelyn Emery says: December 25, 2011 at 4:03 pm Well, the hope was good but it didn’t work. Melton, NW of Melbourne, where my sister and her family were having Xmas dinner, copped a super cell and a tornado. Damage over the city estimated to be about $1 billion, ME frank -- Decoding SwiftHack says: December 25, 2011 at 8:50 am SwiftHack 2.0: Berbalang, Bernard J, Hetzner Online AG, CA, swifthack.tk — in decreasing weirdness. — frank Raul M. says: December 25, 2011 at 2:08 pm Merry Christmas, Oh boy, is that carbon budget so over and over overdrawn. Rabid Doomsayer says: December 25, 2011 at 10:11 pm American politics is so very stable right? The rants of Mulga Mumblebrain are just too far left left to gain any traction in the States, right? You may not agree with Mumblebrain’s politics (just guessing) but he does have considerable insight, is deeply analytical and has a way with words. I am glad that he has not chosen to argue against climate change. A few percent extra tax on the very wealthy would allow balancing the budget and sufficient expenditure that a Mumblebrain would be ignored. Cheap insurance if you will. Now imagine four years of Rick Perry. Are you so very sure a local Mumblebrain would not then gain traction. Mulga Mumblebrain says: December 25, 2011 at 11:03 pm Rabid, the kleptocracy fear not the ‘local Mumblebrain’. If bribery don’t work, well then, accidents do happen. It is the universal, inner, Mumblebrains that the pathocrats must tremble before, because they are stirring. Fortunately I spent my first twenty years in a coma, so I missed out on the brainwashing to make me believe that the greediest kleptomaniacs were the noblest and most admirable of God’s creatures. They weren’t able to silence the mumbling, muttering, truth, that things are not as they should be. Rabid Doomsayer says: December 25, 2011 at 11:47 pm “Fortunately I spent my first twenty years in a coma, so I missed out on the brainwashing” Gee and I thought it was the LSE Four years of Rick Perry and there would be resonance between one such as yourself and that inner muttering truth in the masses. The utter greed of the few will lead to their worst nightmare. A few percent would save all that they care for. Mulga Mumblebrain says: December 26, 2011 at 1:07 am ‘LSE’-‘Late Stage Encephalopathy’? Or perhaps ‘Lateral Synaptic Extravasation’? Or ‘Liquor Soaked Egomania’? I’m at a loss. Rabid Doomsayer says: December 26, 2011 at 3:49 am HA Liquor Soaked Egomania, I will have to remember that one. FedUpWithDenial says: December 26, 2011 at 4:40 am Mulga’s “rants” are works of art, at their best similar in style and substance to the rants of Shakespearean characters such as Thersites in the darkly comical Troilus and Cressida (1599-1601) and Apemantus in the regrettably unfinished Timon of Athens (1605-08). (The former is the Bard’s most intellectual play, and is, in its way, an incomparable masterpiece.) These characters are cynics in the classical sense of the term, related to the cynic philosopher Diogenes who lived in the time of Alexander the Great and actually associated with the latter. Classically, the cynic – often compared to a dog – is the one who, dressed in rags, caring nothing for wealth or fame, and having largely abandoned civilization to live in the lap of Nature, sees through the conventions and artificialities of society to grasp the deep truth of things. In this respect cynic is similar to Lao-tzu and the Buddha. The cynic’s role is to stand apart and point to the utter foolishness of the greater part of humankind, driven by lusts as well as greed and deluded by false notions such as of “self” (ego) and “other.” In Shakespeare, characters like Apemantus and the “dog” Thersites fit this role precisely, standing apart from the action of their respective plays to comment on its utter absurdity – heaping all manner of venomous scorn, vituperation, satire, scurrilous jest, and condemnation upon the various goings-on that the characters involved in the action take to be the serious business of the world. (Shakespeare was, of course, the supreme master of rant – as well as metaphor – and his play Troilus and Cressida is full of both.) With his barbed commentary, Mulga Mumblebrain plays a similar role at Climate Progress, pointing to the epic monstrosity – at once tragicomical and absurd – of a human race so transfixed by its own delusion and folly as to be unable to save itself from itself. Need I say more? Merrelyn Emery says: December 26, 2011 at 5:53 pm No. Well said FedUp, ME Rabid Doomsayer says: December 26, 2011 at 6:25 pm Far better said than I could have. Nor was my intention to attack Mulga. In a serious joust of words I would not stand a chance, Mulga has a sharp mind. Mulga Mumblebrain says: December 26, 2011 at 6:23 pm So. I’m a cynical dog, dressed in rags, without fame or fortune, eh? OK, who’s been talking? You’ve got the place bugged haven’t you? Just give us a bit of time, after I take my flea tablet, and I’ll find the wretched devices. Actually one of my favourite role models was Han Shan, the Chinese poetical recluse who lived on ‘Cold Mountain’, but he laughed a lot, and times were simpler. I’m reduced to a dejected cackle, from time to time, these days. Reality has turned out not necessarily to our advantage, or my liking. 6thextinction says: December 25, 2011 at 11:08 pm in the recent article about discussing climate change with your uncle at holiday dinner, one result listed was “the loss of freshwater supplies due to melting glaciers.” would someone explain (in not too much detail) why this would be? Mulga Mumblebrain says: December 26, 2011 at 1:08 am Just visit La Paz and all will be revealed. Colorado Bob says: December 26, 2011 at 2:59 pm Think of mountain glaciers as water towers. prokaryotes says: December 27, 2011 at 8:18 am Himalayan nations agree on climate adaptation plan The most contentious part of the talks dealt with water security, according to the WWF release, but the four nations did agree to work together on ecosystem and disaster management, sharing their knowledge in water use efficiency. Regional tensions have long prevented Himalayan cooperation, including basic research in the world’s largest block of glaciers outside the polar regions, and accounting for 40 percent of the world’s fresh water. http://news.yahoo.com/himalayan-nations-agree-climate-adaptation-plan-085546398.html Unfortunately the precious water resource will dry up, and changing the entire world climate too. Raul M. says: December 26, 2011 at 5:02 pm If the Earth has an energy balance and by burning coal and oil we withdraw savings of energy and release it to the atmosphere, then to remake the energy balance we will need to put some form of carbon into the savings account. We know that the oceans can not do this for us. I must admit that I am at a loss in figuring out how there is a carbon budget and if energy experts will ever declare bankruptcy of the energy balance. A carbon budget??? Such might be possible if there was Repayment to the carbon balance. Maybe it’s a new definition to the word budget that is specific to the atmospheric energy sys. But no. Maybe it just refers to how much mankind will be expected to put up in the air? Is increased mineralization due to dust storms counted as putting carbon into savings so that it may be counted as an energy budget? David B. Benson says: December 26, 2011 at 8:23 pm Question unclear. There is a carbon cycle which has been seriously disrupted from its state before the burning of coal. Raul M. says: December 27, 2011 at 1:34 pm David, My question is about the use of the term budget for it seems misplaced and misused in referring to environmental issues of the common ways. In nature the carbon flows to neutral over time and so we enjoyed nice weather. Mans use of carbon has upset the balance of carbon and the forces to neutral could be severe. By not directing carbon into the earth there seems to be an corrupt use of the word budget. But, if any, my question would be what is the definition of budget that could possibly not show such an delusional allusion to the natural carbon balance? prokaryotes says: December 27, 2011 at 7:34 am My wish for 2012? A LAST 10 COMMENT MODULE Thank You for considering :) CW says: December 27, 2011 at 5:53 pm It’d be great to get a book review of the following: Reframing the Problem of Climate Change From Zero Sum Game to Win-Win Solutions By Klaus Hasselmann, Carlo Jaeger, Gerd Leipold, Diana Mangalagiu, Joan David Tàbara Published November 30th 2011 by Routledge – 258 pages [From the publisher: “This book provides an evaluation of the science and policy debates on climate change and offers a reframing of the challenges they pose, as understood by key international experts and players in the field. It also gives an important and original perspective on interpreting climate action and provides compelling evidence of the weakness of arguments that frame climate policy as a win-or-lose situation. At the same time, the book goes beyond providing yet another description of climate change trends and policy processes. Its goal is to make available, in a series of in-depth reflections and insights by key international figures representing science, business, finance and civil society, what is really needed to link knowledge to action. Different contributions convincingly show that it is time – and possible – to reframe the climate debate in a completely new light, perhaps as a system transformative attractor for new green growth, sustainable development, and technological innovation. Reframing the Problem of Climate Change reflects a deep belief that dealing with climate change does not have to be a zero sum game, with winners and losers. The contributors argue that our societies can learn to respond to the challenge it presents and avoid both human suffering and large scale destruction of ecosystems; and that this does not necessarily require economic sacrifice. Therefore, it is vital reading for students, academics and policy makers involved in the debate surrounding climate change.”] prokaryotes says: December 27, 2011 at 9:51 pm Apple investigating fuel-cell-powered MacBooks http://www.kurzweilai.net/apple-investigating-fuel-cell-powered-macbooks prokaryotes says: December 27, 2011 at 9:53 pm How to learn things automatically http://www.kurzweilai.net/how-to-learn-things-automatically prokaryotes says: December 27, 2011 at 9:54 pm A limitless power source for the indefinite future http://www.kurzweilai.net/a-limitless-power-source-for-the-indefinite-future Rick Baartman says: December 30, 2011 at 1:25 pm I don’t see any climate blogs picking up this important story: http://www.agu.org/pubs/crossref/2011/2011JD016214.shtml I.e. that there is a difference in storm frequency between weekdays and weekends. The reason this is important is that a very common argument used by the naive denier is that man is too puny to affect the weather. This study convincingly demonstrates otherwise.