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Messages - Susan Anderson

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The forum / Re: Forum Decorum
« on: October 06, 2019, 08:44:03 PM »
Here is a quote which I provide first, and hope it will be read before being dismissed. The explanation of why it is here follows directly. Since this is one of the best summaries of the problem I've ever seen, I felt it was worth putting it out of context, and lead this comment with it. It is equal opportunity in accusing big fossil of corruption everywhere.

The saga includes, among other incidents, the purposeful detonation of a 50-kiloton nuclear bomb 8,000 feet below the earth's surface (unsettlingly close to an I70 exit ramp in Colorado); an international financial crisis; a 28,000 ton vessel dragging unmoored and unmanned on the craggy coast of Alaska; tornadoes; the novelty of man-made earthquakes; murdered cows; and a third-grade public school teacher panhandling to provide school supplies for her students. Even an inept Russian spy ring ferreted out of suburban tract houses in New Jersey and Virginia. Even Russia's interference in the 2016 US presidential election. Seems unlikely, but it all ties.

The motive force of all the action - its fuel as well as its engine - is the most consequential, the most lucrative, the most powerful, and the least-well-governed major industry in the history of mankind. Oil and gas. I do not propose to discount or minimize the powerful and positive effects the producers of our hydrocarbons have had on our own country and on the world at large. I like driving ... and heating my house as much as the next person, and the through line between energy and economic growth and development is as clear to me as an electric streetlight piercing the black night. But the political impact of the industry that brings us those things is also worth recognizing as a key ingredient in the global chaos and democratic downturn we're now living through.

I don't mean to be rude, but I also want to be clear: the oil and gas industry is essentially a big casino that can produce both power and triumphant great gobs of cash, often with little regard for merit. This equation invites gangsterism, extortion, thuggery, and the sorts of folks who enjoy these hobbies. Its practitioners have been lumbering across the globe of late, causing mindless damage and laying the groundwork for the global catastrophe that is the climate crisis, but also reordering short-term geopolitics in a strong-but-dumb survival contest that renders everything we think of as politics as just theatre. It's worth understanding why. And why now.

Why is this here? Because Neven has shut down a discussion about Rachel Maddow's superb book about the history of oil and gas and its takeover of the world (quote is from her introduction), with some blistering insults and misrepresentations (see below). This is not true (I was going to say something stronger, the lack of skepticism reflects a strange lack of interest in the facts or the truth; it is hard to understand why Neven, who has does the world a great service as one of the world's most superb reporters on the cryosphere, chooses to be guided by hate on this). It is gaslighting, ad hominem, using personal attacks to discredit some of the best reporting on big fossil we have in the world today. I didn't know exactly where to put it, so here it is.

Please at least read the above quote with an open mind (it's from the introduction to Blowout. It is a powerful bit of truthtelling. To call the author one of the out-of-touch-millionnaire stooges of smoke-and-mirrors neoliberalism is wrong, and it does harm.

Re: Last Stand of The Fossil Fools« Reply #1 on: Today at 12:38:02 PM »

But this has nothing to do whatsoever with Arctic sea ice, and a video with two out-of-touch-millionnaire stooges of smoke-and-mirrors neoliberalism is about the worst starting point one could imagine.

The rest / Re: Systemic Isolation
« on: September 29, 2019, 06:54:21 PM »
FWIW, Feynman hated bullshit. Full stop.

[He hung out with our group of artists at MIT in the mid-80s, when he was working at Thinking Machines. We spent a lot of time with him, and consumed a fair amount (but not too much) of beer together.]

The politics / Re: The Koch Watch Thread
« on: September 28, 2019, 09:19:54 PM »
Don't know if this video will cross the pond, but it's pretty good. Some of the contents include how in response to action under George HW Bush, Pelosi-Gingrich collaboration, the Waxman-Markey bill, etc., the "Koch Family Foundations spent $127,006,756 directly financing 92 groups that have attacked climate change science". They helped replace Bob Inglis when he said he "believed" in climate change with Trey Gowdy, etc. etc.

The politics / Re: The Koch Watch Thread
« on: September 27, 2019, 04:54:36 PM »
I thought this one deserved a separate post. This story is only one of many. There are untold riches in the Jane Mayer New Yorker list.

A Whistle-Blower Accuses the Kochs of “Poisoning” an Arkansas Town

limited extract, better to check the original, but of course it's paywalled with monthly article limits.
air-quality monitoring equipment, which he told me showed “deadly levels of hydrogen sulfide,” a foul-smelling, colorless gas that has proven carcinogenic to rats and mice. Guice took measurements in the morning, midday, and evening, and documented them all. When he told the Georgia-Pacific supervisors that he was getting readings so high that they indicated a potential for immediate illness and death, he says the company blamed his equipment. After he protested this, they offered to build a roof over the fields where the waste was being spread, but he told them that this would be like building a toxic gas chamber. “They told me it was my problem. They knew it was dangerous, but their attitude was: keep your mouth shut, do the job, and don’t get in anyone’s business,” according to Guice. Eventually, a company official took her own readings, which he says confirmed his own. At this point, the company decided to build a huge stainless-steel chain-link fence around the perimeter of its property, “so you can’t see where the work is,” he told me. Once he was able to get employment elsewhere, Guice, who had been contacted by the filmmakers behind “Company Town,” decided to blow the whistle.

The politics / Re: The Koch Watch Thread
« on: September 27, 2019, 04:48:55 PM »
Thanks for creating this. I carefully read Jane Mayer's Dark Money which contains much of the same information, and possibly more. Mayer gave the Leonard book a good review. Her materials on the Kochtopus and other forms of corruption in the US are ongoing and contain quite a few offshoots, including their efforts to discredit her. {I've included some - possibly excessive - links to her many articles, which are a record of the downfall of any potential for integrity and fairness in the US.}

The Kochs got an early start by providing facilities for Stalin and Hitler.

They have an inside track to US government through Mike Pence (and also because the leadership at the top is highly disorganized). The Danger of President Pence: Trump’s critics yearn for his exit. But Mike Pence, the corporate right’s inside man, poses his own risks.

Myron Ebell was Trumpistan's early point person installing the "bad guys" - fossil lobbyists and other power brokers - everywhere and getting rid of science and honesty.

They are also closely allied to international climate fake skeptics such as UK's Global Warming Policy Foundation (GWPF), and the unchristian "Christians" who wouldn't have anything to do with Jesus or his teachings (per the gospels which are short and repetitive). (I say this as an atheist, so let's not get going on religion: I have great respect for the leadership of compassion and caring for the less fortunate Jesus models.)

Trump vs. Koch Is a Custody Battle Over Congress: Both Donald Trump and Charles Koch appear to think that the Republican Party in particular, and American politics in general, should be theirs to dominate.

What Happened to Jane Mayer When She Wrote About the Koch Brothers
“The firm, it appears, was Vigilant Resources International, whose founder and chairman, Howard Safir, had been New York City’s police commissioner under the former Mayor Rudolph Giuliani,” she writes in “Dark Money.”

Antarctica / Re: Thwaites Glacier Discussion
« on: September 27, 2019, 04:17:02 PM »
Goodness gracious. I know it's a visual artifact, but I can't help being reminded of a shaking puddinglike entity. Since this is the beginning of the warming season, I would guess hope for inaction is sadly unlikely.

The forum / Re: Forum Decorum
« on: September 26, 2019, 07:58:03 PM »
I once again faced a barrage of intolerant and in some cases ill-informed opinion. imnsho, this should not occupy space in the list of recent posts.

I would rather see you there fighting the good fight with me, Susan. :) ;)

Thanks, but I tried and failed, for way too long. I don't have the time or the stamina, and Neven himself condemned my efforts. It's his forum.

@nanning, yes, we are too egocentric. And - OT alert - Boris Johnson suggesting that the murdered anti-Brexit campaigner should be "honored" by promoting Brexit is horrifying as well. There are too many dictators-in-training and racist otherblamers taking over too many governments around the globe. But I'm past apologizing for the likes of Mossadegh, Vietnam, Reagan/Thatcher, and Bush II, let alone Trump. It's awful!!!

The forum / Re: Forum Decorum
« on: September 26, 2019, 05:01:43 PM »
Why is US politics again on "recent posts"?,2441.msg230712.html#msg230712

Please put it in "off topic". It has little to do with the cryosphere (though I acknowledge US Republicans and Trump endanger the planet in every conceivable way), and when I last ventured to speak up in in that area, I once again faced a barrage of intolerant and in some cases ill-informed opinion. imnsho, this should not occupy space in the list of recent posts.

Greenland and Arctic Circle / Re: Greenland 2019 Melt Season
« on: August 27, 2019, 05:17:06 PM »
Excellent posts, as usual.  As this season draws to a close, I look forward to your next thread.
What KKat said.

Arctic sea ice / Re: The 2019 melting season
« on: August 27, 2019, 05:15:04 PM »
Not sure how relevant this might be, but the Atlantic hurricane season is just getting going. That will push heat north (highly simplified, I know).

The politics / Re: Russia, Russia, Russia
« on: August 22, 2019, 08:43:47 PM »
My friend Florifulgurator brought me back here, to find the same condemnatory blindness I got away from some while ago. Yes, the sins of the US and other western empire builders are manifold and disgusting, things like the second Iraq war, the replacement of Mossadegh by the Shah, the financing of Osama Bin Laden to fight the Soviets, Vietnam, and our manifold sins in Central and South America (the informative video about Central America below is created by an American; I have some personal history in that conflict; Reagan was a monster*). Lumping us all together and blaming each of us for sins we've fought to overcome is unhelpful at best.

For example, why should I hold all current citizens of Austria to blame for Hitler? Should I assume that citizens of the countries mentioned here are all collaborators? Far-right, even racist views go mainstream in Central Europe
In many places, the shift to the right has included the rehabilitation of Nazi collaborators, often fighters or groups celebrated as anti-communists or defenders of national liberation. In Hungary and Poland, governments are also eroding the independence of courts and the media, prompting human rights groups to warn that democracy is threatened in parts of a region that threw off Moscow-backed dictatorships in 1989.

Some analysts say Russia is covertly helping extremist groups in order to destabilize Western liberal democracies. While that claim is difficult to prove with concrete evidence, it’s clear that the growth of radical groups has pushed moderate conservative European parties to the right to hold onto votes.

Assuming we support and are to blame for everything that is wrong in the world may be satisfying, since I, for example, can be directly condemned and blamed, but in the larger scheme you are wasting your misdirected energy. My time is better spent working with the majority here in the US to return humanity to my country, and overcome TrumpRepublican's efforts to make hate great again. To do that, we have to get rid of vote cheating, and Putin's Russian support of Trump, McConnell, and Republican nastiness is very much a part of that problem. (McConnell is receiving direct support from Russia in several forms in his local election.)

If you would all simply put Putin and Trump together, along with all Trump's other faves, such as Kim Jong Un, MBS, Al Sisi, Duterte, Erdogan, and other conservative strongmen that he envies because they can jail, torture, and kill their opponents, you would have a better idea of the fix we're in. Those of us who prefer Elizabeth Warren or another progressive, the Squad, Greta Thunberg, and others fighting for real Democracy and equality from all points of the compass, are not helped by these single-minded condemnations.

You can hold your nose all you like, but it sure as hell is not helping action on climate change to alienate everyone who does not subscribe to your wholesale blamefest. In work to make things better, 1%, or even 10%, is not going to be enough.

Blaming those who work towards a better situation because they're not part of the 1% who demand perfection, bothsidism, abdication, and supporting factions and splinters that have no chance of effecting change, makes you "perfect" in your own eyes and those of your buddies, but it also makes you vulnerable to manipulation, which, I think, it the point some of us have tried to make here, and failed.

Here's some good ammo for your "side" - we individuals who did not support this - ever - are not the bad guys here.

Greenland and Arctic Circle / Re: What's new in Greenland?
« on: August 19, 2019, 08:17:14 PM »
A little birdie told me that some of Greenland's minerals are subject to Australian control. Would that be Gina Rinehart, of ill repute (she owns phosphorus mine in Yorkshire, if you didn't know)? Adani (the coal baron set on making billions off poisoning the Pacific and Indian subcontinents?

China, of course, would be very very interested, and they're good at taking advantage. However, I have a healthy respect for the Danes.

Permafrost / Re: Toward Improved Discussions of Methane & Climate
« on: June 13, 2019, 09:10:07 AM »
Unexpected surge in methane levels:

"Freedom gas" "molecules of freedom" - ugh!!!

Antarctica / Re: What's new in Antarctica ?
« on: June 13, 2019, 09:06:44 AM »
Super colossal holes in Antarctic ice demystified by scientists
Mashable's Mark Kaufman covers a good range of materials on environmental subjects (not just Antarctica/cryosphere, though this one is on topic). Warm water creates polynias in June?!!

The politics / Re: Empire - America and the future
« on: May 02, 2019, 10:48:25 PM »
Warm your heart at this!

Consequences / Re: Hurricane Season 2019
« on: May 02, 2019, 05:44:25 PM »
Sorry, didn't mean to make it personal. I've been following Fani with my heart in my mouth, those poor people, and saw quite a bit of discussion about the Florida thing on the same board (link above, which is useful to those who want more information).

I agree, the general trend towards earlier and later is ominous ...

Another knock-on, though I don't comprehend the scientific part, is that since cyclonic activity is a way of venting excess heat both north and vertically, it's a problem that increases polar melt over time. I am absolutely fascinated by the interlocking systems.

Thanks for your reply.

Consequences / Re: Hurricane Season 2019
« on: May 02, 2019, 05:46:30 AM »
See if I can paste this; hah, it worked! Hope it stays ...

Consequences / Re: Hurricane Season 2019
« on: May 02, 2019, 05:39:57 AM »
Fani is a big deal, about a day and a half away. Could be more than catastrophic. Kenneth is still causing unbearable human suffering (Mozambique etc.), after Idai as well. The thing off Florida is not yet, and unlikely to become, a very big deal, except it's a mite early. For reliable information, here. A lot of meteo enthusiasts and experts post in the comment section, and during storms the leaders do a good job of updating the main Category 6 articles (Masters, Henson, et al.).

There are floods in quite a few places and the US is having a stream of tornadoes.

The politics / Re: The Media: Examples of Good AND Bad Journalism
« on: May 01, 2019, 08:43:26 PM »
More quote, though it would be better to read the whole thing. Devastating and accurate!

This drives us towards cataclysm on such a scale that most people have no means of imagining it. The threatened collapse of our life support systems is bigger by far than war, famine, pestilence or economic crisis, though it is likely to incorporate all four. Societies can recover from these apocalyptic events, but not from the loss of soil, an abundant biosphere and a habitable climate.

The second defining element is the bizarre assumption that a person is entitled to as great a share of the world’s natural wealth as their money can buy. This seizure of common goods causes three further dislocations. First, the scramble for exclusive control of non-reproducible assets, which implies either violence or legislative truncations of other people’s rights. Second, the immiseration of other people by an economy based on looting across both space and time. Third, the translation of economic power into political power, as control over essential resources leads to control over the social relations that surround them.

and, devastating but true:

Our choice comes down to this. Do we stop life to allow capitalism to continue, or stop capitalism to allow life to continue?

The politics / Re: The Media: Examples of Good AND Bad Journalism
« on: May 01, 2019, 08:41:34 PM »
Monbiot in my inbox today

The Problem is Capitalism

It is a weapon pointed at the living world. We urgently need to develop a new system.

By George Monbiot, published in the Guardian 25th April 2019

For most of my adult life, I’ve railed against “corporate capitalism”, “consumer capitalism” and “crony capitalism”. It took me a long time to see that the problem is not the adjective, but the noun.

While some people have rejected capitalism gladly and swiftly, I’ve done so slowly and reluctantly. Part of the reason was that I could see no clear alternative: unlike some anti-capitalists, I have never been an enthusiast for state communism. I was also inhibited by its religious status. To say “capitalism is failing” in the 21st century is like saying “God is dead” in the 19th. It is secular blasphemy. It requires a degree of self-confidence I did not possess.

But as I’ve grown older, I’ve come to recognise two things. First, that it is the system, rather than any variant of the system, which drives us inexorably towards disaster. Second, that you do not have to produce a definitive alternative to say that capitalism is failing. The statement stands in its own right. But it also demands another, and different, effort to develop a new system.

Capitalism’s failures arise from two of its defining elements. The first is perpetual growth. Economic growth is the aggregate effect of the quest to accumulate capital and extract profit. Capitalism collapses without growth, yet perpetual growth on a finite planet leads inexorably to environmental calamity.

I again strongly recommend Steven Stoll's Ramp Hollow which explores the history of money, markets, and exploitation. It changed how I think about capitalism. Unfortunately, exploitation by owners is the norm, not the exception, and money makes it easier.

I did debate putting this in the capitalism discussion, but since the opener talks about the trouble with using the adjective rather than the noun seems to me this gets to the root of the problem with attacking good people not doing well enough under constant attack instead of bad people doing their worst, thus enabling perps by blaming victims. That makes it "good journalism" at its best, imho.

Antarctica / Re: What's new in Antarctica ?
« on: May 01, 2019, 08:34:06 PM »
Very useful discussion, thanks to all!

Arctic sea ice / Re: The Rammb Slider Thread
« on: April 23, 2019, 08:39:34 PM »
Screengrab for Mac:

Drag to create crop box
Hey presto

Mine stores on my desktop, not sure how I set that up or if it's the default. Looking on Finder recent files should locate it.

I have very little appetite for the single minded bullying that claims I'm trying to attack the "free speech" of the clique that dominates here. We get that from White Nationalists here.

But I did come across a good quote to share. It's why so many people trying to present other valid views here have given up (including, mostly, myself). The multiple attack posts here are not coming from me, but from people who wish to silence voices that correct the group view. It does, in fact, closely resemble the likes of WattsUpWithThat on climate, embracing anything that agrees with the bias, and rejecting anything that provides a wider view and critical thinking.

the story, like so many Trump-era stories, is a trap: questioning the assumption would have led journalists down the slippery slope of arguing about facts, denying outrageous claims that shouldn’t be given the time it takes to deny them.
I'm not saying there's not plenty of blame to go around, just that it's important to acknowledge that the situation we inherited cannot be fixed overnight, or possibly at all, since it derives from centuries and millenia of human experience. We need a community of good people, not the tiny fraction of perfectionists who don't acknowledge their own shortcomings (everyone living participates in modern comforts that exploit the earth and the poor, though some are trying harder than others to grow out of it). The introduction of wage slavery, for example, traces back to the origins of money and growth of populations. I suggest for the thoughtful reader the book Ramp Hollow by Steven Stoll.

Blaming victims gives power to oppressors.

Hating on Democrats will elect Republicans. Gravel's a great guy, but I'm for the art of the possible. Absolutism and faultfinding of the imperfect (while ignoring the monstrous) gets us Hitler, Stalin, Trump, MBS, Al Sisi, Erdogan, Kim Jong Un, Putin, Duterte, Netanyahu, Bolsonaro, Assad, Mugabe, etc. Undermining allies of social and humanitarian resistance gets you the establishment and coercion.

That said, I wish you all would take a good hard look at Elizabeth Warren, who is in my view the ideal to lead my country. She's not doing well, being a practical woman quite willing to take on the establishment, and surprisingly successful at doing so against great odds, but not inclined to hype and charismatic overstatement. There are several others I'd be happy with, Inslee for his 100% climate focus, Corey Booker, despite a few things

Tulsi Gabbard is a nice pretty woman, who follows a guru and probably could earn the support of the military-industrial establishment. She has some good views, but is weak overall. Rand Paul is monstrous, all about removing all restraint on corporate governance and getting rid of any regulatory restraint on the environment and corporate power.

Antarctica / Re: PIG has calved
« on: April 10, 2019, 04:48:08 AM »
Earth Observatory has a nice animation and summary: The Wide View of a Shrinking Glacier: Retreat at Pine Island. It's longish and presents a range of information.


It's a one way street, isn't it? Criticize, don't listen, and then claim you're the one not allowed to speak. It's a complete waste of time. Just like climate denial, as I said. Bias promoting bias.

I will continue to post information that interrupts the backslapping and represents other points of view, though you've mostly shut down anyone who speaks up. That's why I posted the sex education post, in the hopes that some cognitive dissonance would break in to the "choir". In the meanwhile, you are welcome to help disable the opposition to real bad guys and blame those who are trying against the odds to promote progressive progress. Trumpistan loves you!

You guys have a fixation on "corporate dems". You're out of date and distorting as well. Dems have been out of power. Nancy Pelosi is a great example of a good 'un. Blaming victims is not helpful. You have no idea what these people would do if they could. You appear to need to blame somebody, and as a result are looking away from the real villains.

This is not completely OT, since y'all are too busy attacking our allies to notice our enemies who do this kind of thing. It's hopefully weird and awful enough to get your attention about what is really going on. I've extracted the whole text, since access to NYTimes is somewhat paywalled (limited # of aticles per month):

America’s Leaders Need Sex Ed: For those who want to regulate women’s bodies, ignorance has been no obstacle.

A few recent news stories have served as reminders that an awful lot of people lack even a basic understanding of the female body. And some of those people get to make and shape our laws.

There was the lawyer in Alabama who tried to justify an extreme anti-abortion bill that he helped draft by arguing that after a man and a woman have sex, “you can take her straight into a clinic and determine an egg and sperm came together.”

That’s not medically possible. Even the most sensitive pregnancy test won’t come back positive until an embryo is implanted in the uterus, which typically happens a week or more after fertilization. So the idea that any woman would be able to get an abortion within two weeks of fertilization — the cutoff under the Alabama bill — is preposterous.

Maybe not everyone learns the mechanics of early pregnancy in ninth-grade biology class. But it’s reasonable to expect that someone trying to legislate what pregnant people can do with their bodies would have a better grasp on the matter. (He might also want to consider the logistics of sending millions of women for in-clinic pregnancy tests immediately after they have sex. But that’s a story for another day.)

Then there was the member of Maine’s House of Representatives who said that giving incarcerated women an adequate supply of menstrual products would make prisons akin to “country clubs.”

Beyond the questions this raises about what he thinks goes on at country clubs, it’s disturbing that an adult male doesn’t seem to know what tampons and pads do. As so many of us are intimately aware, these products are not luxury items, but rather an absolute necessity for anyone who’s menstruating.

The bad news for the rest of us is that these guys are hardly alone in trying to legislate aspects of human bodies that they do not understand.

There was the lawmaker in Idaho who asked at a legislative hearing whether a woman could get a gynecological exam by swallowing a tiny camera. (No more than a dentist can do her job by looking at your feet.)

And the Texas state representative who seemed to think that abortion providers cut into women’s bodies. (That’s a cesarean section.)

And the other Texas lawmaker who said that while getting a rape kit exam, “the woman can get cleaned out” to end her pregnancy. (That’s not what rape kits are for.)

And, of course, this infamous observation from Todd Akin, then a Missouri congressman: “If it’s a legitimate rape, the female body has ways to try to shut that whole thing down.” (Where even to begin?)

And last month President Trump mused about Central American migrants heading to the United States: “Mothers who love their daughters give them massive amounts of birth control pills, because they know their daughters are going to be raped.” (That is ... not how birth control works.)

This is without even getting into politicians’ misguided notions about comprehensive sex education, their insistence that the morning-after pill and intrauterine devices cause abortions and their curious views about birth control in general. (“Many of the Christian faith have said, well, that’s O.K., contraception is O.K. It’s not O.K,” said Rick Santorum, the former Republican senator from Pennsylvania, in 2011. “It’s a license to do things in a sexual realm that is counter to how things are supposed to be.”)

As members of the anti-abortion movement have sought increasingly extreme restrictions on the procedure — and have rolled back access to contraception and other health services — their justifications have become further removed from science and fact. It would be naïve to think that giving every elected official a copy of “Our Bodies, Ourselves” would change that.

But facts do still matter. And it sure wouldn’t hurt for more people in power to learn about the bodies they’re trying to regulate.

Nor would it hurt for supporters of reproductive freedom to remember they’re fighting a war on multiple fronts — and ignorance about women’s bodies is one of them.

@Neven & @ritter

There is nothing inherently wrong with any race or people who are luckier in life's lottery. I'm for more sharing and for getting together to solve problems.

I am soooooo cheered by AOC and I love Elizabeth Warren, and there are a good few others (listened to Maxine Waters tonight). It reminds me that out of evil can come good, though I don't have much hope that the skilled and principled Warren can win. I have always worked closely (as employee, colleague, and boss) with people of color, and I tend to set aside my inborn tendency to notice differences and deal with the person, rich or poor, yellow, brown, white (or green). People of color are often excellent bosses, more broad-minded but fiercely loyal to their own, which is not surprising given what they've always had to endure. It's a bit early to be fighting fiercely about 20 months from now (only in the US are elections so long, disgusting waste of money and energy).

I'm just finishing Steven Stoll's Ramp Hollow about Appalachia and subsistence farming and the history of capital and money, and it's discouraging. Trouble is, no matter what system you prefer, the cheaters and exploiters are bound to find a way to game the system.

We take too much for granted.

Consequences / Re: Forests: An Endangered Resource
« on: April 06, 2019, 10:01:16 AM »
The secret deal to destroy paradise: The story behind the single biggest threat to the rainforests of Indonesia.

This is only a small extract, please go to the link:

The threat to the rainforests of Indonesia was very real. Since the turn of the century, only Brazil has lost more rainforest than Indonesia. One of the leading causes of this deforestation was a boom in industrial-scale plantations that began in the early 2000s. Those plantations enabled Indonesia to become the leading producer of palm oil, an edible oil used in an endless array of consumer products. But it also sparked an environmental crisis, as the carbon locked up in rainforests was released into the atmosphere.

The volume of greenhouse gas emissions from Indonesian rainforests has made it a matter of international concern. Norway has pledged $1 billion in an attempt to incentivize reforms to curb them. Since 2015, the administration of President Joko Widodo has sought to rein in the plantation industry, most recently by enacting a temporary ban on any new permits for palm plantations. Though just a small proportion of the Tanah Merah project has been developed, the permits were issued before the ban came into force, and the forest remains slated for destruction.

Today, an area larger than Manhattan has been cleared within the Tanah Merah project. This is only a fraction of the total project area. If the rest is bulldozed as planned, it will release as much emissions as Virginia produces by burning fossil fuels each year. If the giant sawmill that is today being constructed on the land is completed, it will suck in timber for years to come, settling the fate of swathes of rainforest in southern Papua.

Antarctica / Re: What's new in Antarctica ?
« on: April 06, 2019, 09:53:22 AM »
Not quite new (the fossils, that is!):-

Thanks, good article, except when it compresses catchup time to 300 years (I've heard 10,000 which may be optimistic, but 300? not if one listens to scientists (though they're only talking about 10-20 meters, and perhaps that's likely) The total rise I've heard for entire ice melt (which a warm Antarctica would imply) is more like 65 meters.

Temperatures may currently be lower than in the Pliocene, but that's only because there is a lag in the system

Antarctica / Re: Halley base shut down and new crack in Brunt shelf
« on: April 06, 2019, 09:45:56 AM »

Useful and fascinating, makes sense.

Trouble is, headlines are all too often oversimplifications. I get it, but in fact global warming and climate will play a part in ice breakoffs as time goes on. Perhaps more after the break (the stress explanation makes sense) in terms of where the ice ends up, and how much the surrounding area will be degraded (if it is).

The rest / Re: How Educated are we as a Forum
« on: April 04, 2019, 08:42:07 PM »
Many of the participants on the scientific side of this forum are well educated amateurs who in some cases exceed the expertise of those with PostDoc education. Neven on the Arctic would be a good example.

This result, while interesting, will not reflect the collected expertise here.

[You need only look at the political posts, however, to see that intelligent people can go sadly astray when they go outside their field of expertise and start "collecting" biased material on the internet and looking for people to blame, while being unable to distinguish between liberals and neoliberals.]

So, how do people now feel about the Corporate Democrats' brilliant strategy of blaming Russia for Trump's election (instead of taking a hard look in the mirror) and putting all of the eggs in the Russiagate basket?

Pretty poor decision. Trump represents the dissatisfaction with the status quo in American politics and the Corporate Dems have done nothing to address it. I'm still waiting for the Dems to come up with a platform I can vote for rather than a "we're not Trump" focus. It's looking like I'll be waiting a while. I fully expect Trump will carry 2020, unfortunately.

Wow! Firstly, @Neven, Democrats are not focusing on Trump. You are sadly misled.

@Ritter: So Elizabeth Warren, Bernie Sanders, and Jay Inslee (and others) are not good enough for you? You're a lost cause, since someone to the left of these, and more against corporate warmongering, has to be all about the conspiracy, nothing but the conspiracy, first last and always.

The politics / Re: The Media: Examples of Good AND Bad Journalism
« on: April 04, 2019, 08:18:46 PM »
Sorry to break in on the lovefest about how righteous Trump and his supporters are on his various crimes, which is premature, since the letter from Barr is all there is, and it's clear he was fulfilling the promises that got him the job of Attorney General. You guys need to check your bias; you sound like climate fake skeptics: unskeptical about anything that agrees with you. I probably shouldn't bother, since y'all have closed your minds.

Back to topic:
Don't know if these links will cross the pond, but Chris Hayes did a wonderful town hall with Alexandria Ocasio-Cortez at Einstein Hospital auditorium in the Bronx (NYC, AOC's home area) about the Green New Deal. Hayes started out as a climate activist in 2004 and has pushed as much as he can ever since. Some of them overlap.

Terrific quote from AOC when questioned about the attacks from Republicans:
"I didn't expect them to make total fools of themselves," Rep. Ocasio-Cortez told @MSNBC's Chris Hayes. "I expected a little more nuance, and I expected a little more 'concern trolling.'

Extra (18+ minutes)



Greenland and Arctic Circle / Re: What's new in Greenland?
« on: April 02, 2019, 09:28:13 PM »
I see a recent related post in "Ice Apocalypse" but since this one mentions Greenland in the title, I'll assume it's OK as a related cross-reference:
The original for both Antarctica and Greenland slumping research appears to be the same:

Scientists have found that tall ice cliffs in Greenland are slumping — and this may eventually lead to a more rapid rise in sea levels.

The study, published this month in the journal Geology, suggests ice on glacial cliffs in Greenland and Antarctica are acting like soil and rock by slumping — which refers to when weakened sediment breaks apart from land and slides down a slope.

“It’s sort of like a human slumping down in an easy [recliner] chair,” said Richard Alley, one of the authors of the paper and a professor of geosciences at Pennsylvania State University.

Though most of you know this, Dr. Alley is a reliable source who doesn't tend to exaggerate.

The politics / Re: The Trump Presidency
« on: March 30, 2019, 08:49:47 PM »
hmmm ...

Bombshell New Allegations: Kushner Appears to be Extorting Qatari Government

President Trump shockingly supported the blockade of a key US ally in the region, forcing many within his own Administration and the GOP to question the move publicly.

    “What the Qataris found was not just a blockade. There were Saudi [and] Emerati troops on their border,” Ward explained to KrassenCast. “What they interpreted this as, was Jared Kushner basically saying, ‘if you don’t pay my father and pay off this building, look what’s going to happen. We’re going to, I’m going to, the Americans are going to sanction an invasion of your country.’ Sources in the State Department say, yes, it’s true; troops were on the border,” Ward continued.

Nine months later, a Canadian company, Brookfield Partners, who the Qatari Investment Authority owns a $1.8 billion or 9% stake in, bailed out Kushner Properties, with a 99-year lease agreement for 666 5th Ave.

    “They bail it out in a deal that makes absolutely no economic sense. They do a 99-year lease and they pay the entire 99-year lease up front. You don’t need to be good at math, you don’t need to be in the New York real estate community to understand how crazy that is,” Ward told KrassenCast.

Around this same time, President Trump publicly shifts course, no longer supporting the blockade, as Secretary of State Mike Pompeo tells Saudi Arabia to stop the embargo.

Antarctica / Re: What's new in Antarctica ?
« on: March 30, 2019, 08:41:31 PM »
Thanks Gerontocrat, those visuals tell the story with excellence!

Antarctica / Re: Halley base shut down and new crack in Brunt shelf
« on: March 29, 2019, 06:36:44 PM »
Reporting in the New York Times 28 March:
An Iceberg Twice the Size of New York City Is About to Split From Antarctica: Two rifts on the Brunt Ice Shelf in Antarctica are close to creating an iceberg over 560 square miles in size. Scientists say the calving event could happen any day now.

brief but good graphical presentation ...

I think A68 calved in winter. Is it a thing, that as it gets colder the calving potential continues? If so, for how long? Might be, answer is, nobody really knows, just sayin' ... [ocean temps lag a lot, for example in Boston it's just beginning to warm up a tiny bit, over 3 months later]

Policy and solutions / Re: Geoengineering, another rush for money?
« on: March 18, 2019, 04:06:52 PM »
US and Saudi Arabia blocking regulation of geoengineering, sources say: Delegates at UN environment assembly say the oil producers are protecting their industries

Stratospheric controlled perturbation experiment (SCoPEx): a small-scale experiment to improve understanding of the risks of solar geoengineering

I note that some third parties have pointed out that this is an evaluation, so piling on is not quite right. It has been pointed out that experimenting can help us to better understanding. We all know there are likely bad consequences, and we also all know - if we are honest - that the way we humans are, we're too lazy to count the long-term in the pursuit of apparent improvements in the short term. Scientific evaluation is not a full-on commitment to doing, but rather an effort to measure and find out.

The politics / Re: The Media: Examples of Good AND Bad Journalism
« on: February 22, 2019, 09:52:09 PM »
The New Yorker does a more interesting and complete job, including a lot of detailed information about Facebook and the [successful] attempt to influence Brexit voters.

Why the U.K. Condemned Facebook for Fuelling Fake News

Facebook was also used to surreptitiously influence the Brexit vote in the U.K. In arcane detail, the commission explains why it believes an obscure Canadian company called Aggregate I.Q. (A.I.Q.) harvested Facebook users’ profiles and linked them to voter files in order to “precisely target” them with pro-Leave messages. According to the report, “The work of [A.I.Q.] highlights the fact that data has been and is still being used extensively by private companies to target people, often in a political context, in order to influence their decisions. It is far more common that people think.” Indeed, in a ten-month period during 2018, an anonymous, “highly misleading,” pro-Brexit Web site called Mainstream Network spent an estimated two hundred and fifty-seven thousand pounds on Facebook ads that reached nearly eleven million users. “Mainstream Network is yet another, more recent example of an online organisation [sic] seeking to influence political debate . . . and there is no good case for [it] to hide behind anonymity”
If a RICO prosecution seems unlikely, how will governments hold Facebook to account? Facebook is global and the Internet is borderless, but laws are not.
While the big tech companies have stated publicly that they are open to regulation, in the United States they have deployed armies of lobbyists to block government oversight—or at least to neuter it.
has unearthed incontrovertible evidence that propagandists intent on undermining social cohesion were largely enabled by the arrogance, irresponsibility, and rapaciousness of the executives of a single company.

The politics / Re: The Media: Examples of Good AND Bad Journalism
« on: February 22, 2019, 09:03:45 PM »
More good journalism:

Explosive UK Parliamentary Report Exposes the Molten Core of the Trump, Brexit, Russia Scandal

The House of Commons’ Digital, Culture, Media and Sport Committee’s final report on Disinformation and “Fake News” reveals new evidence and calls for new investigations into dark data, dark money and Russian influence in British elections.

The day after Carole Cadwalladr in the Observer revealed Special Counsel Robert Mueller has subpoenaed Brittany Kaiser, director of the now-defunct data company Cambridge Analytica who worked on Nigel Farage’s Leave EU campaign, this landmark parliamentary report provides yet more evidence that the Trump Campaign, the EU referendum and Russian interference are all closely linked.

The report also reveals that the National Crime Agency, currently investigating potential illegal foreign funding of major Leave EU donor Arron Banks, has also been asked to look at potential collusion with Russia over data, following evidence submitted to it by the Information Commissioner’s office.

These revelations follow an exclusive report by the Byline Times last week that multiple investigations by the Metropolitan Police, into up to 14 political figures involved in potential election crimes, are currently stalled.

The report will intensify pressure on Prime Minister Theresa May to launch a full public inquiry into both dark money and dark data in British elections.

Labour MP David Lammy told the Byline Times that “the scale and depth of malicious disinformation and foreign interference this report uncovers demands an urgent response from the Prime Minister on behalf of the British Government”.

“It is now blindingly obvious that we need a criminal investigation – equivalent to the US’ Mueller inquiry – to investigate any possible links between the 2016 Leave campaign, Donald Trump’s campaign team and Russia,” Lammy said.
The DCMS committee, chaired by conservative MP Damian Collins, has been sitting for two years and has provided the most comprehensive account so far of the impact of Russia’s hybrid warfare on Western democracies and its interaction with the populist movements associated with the Brexit vote in 2016 and the election of Donald Trump six months later.

It’s obviously of some concern to the Kremlin. According to the report published today, nearly two-thirds of the views of the interim report, published online last July, were from foreign IP addresses. (The average for most parliamentary publications is only a fifth.) Over half of these foreign views were from Russia. The July report was more popular in Moscow than in London.

The politics / Re: The Media: Examples of Good AND Bad Journalism
« on: February 22, 2019, 05:16:21 AM »
Returning to topic, some excellent journalism from my favorite source, short enough to post in full: The House Takes on America’s Voting-Rights Problem: H.R. 1 is an ambitious set of responses to the most pressing challenges facing American democracy, almost all of which were brought into sharper focus by the 2016 election. (Jelani Cobb)

The crisis of democracy that has attended Donald Trump’s Presidency has visibly manifested itself in challenges to the free press, the judiciary, and the intelligence agencies, but among its more corrosive effects has been the corruption of basic mathematics. Since the 2016 election, Trump has periodically rage-tweeted about an alleged three million non-citizens whose ballots delivered the popular-vote majority to Hillary Clinton. His fulminations were a fanciful extension of the Republican Party’s concern, despite all evidence to the contrary, that American elections are riddled with voter fraud. The math does, however, support a different number—one that truthfully points to how American democracy is being undermined.

Nearly two million fewer African-Americans voted in the 2016 election than did in 2012. That decline can be attributed, in part, to the fact that it was the first election since 2008 in which Barack Obama was not on the ballot and, in part, to an ambivalence toward Clinton among certain black communities. Civil-rights groups and members of the Congressional Black Caucus point to another factor as well: 2016 was the first Presidential election since the Shelby County v. Holder Supreme Court decision, which eviscerated sections of the Voting Rights Act. Suppressive tactics, some old, some new, ensued—among them, voter-roll purges; discriminatory voter-I.D. rules; fewer polling places and voting machines; and reductions in early-voting periods. After an election in which some two million Americans went missing, the Administration concluded that three million too many had shown up at the polls. (The equation here is: reality minus delusion equals three million.)

Last week, with these events in mind, a hearing on H.R. 1, the For the People Act, took place in the House of Representatives. Elijah Cummings, Democrat of Maryland, the new chair of the Committee on Oversight and Reform, referred to the bill, in his opening remarks, as “one of the boldest reform packages to be considered in the history of this body.” He added, “This sweeping legislation will clean up corruption in government, fight secret money in politics, and make it easier for American citizens across this great country to vote.” That statement was not partisan hyperbole. The bill is a broad, imaginative, and ambitious set of responses to the most pressing challenges facing American democracy, many of which preceded the 2016 election, but almost all of which were brought into sharper focus by it.

Implicit in the choice to take up an electoral-reform bill as the first act of the new Democratic majority in the House was the decision to confront not only these injustices but, more fundamentally, the forces that have allowed them to come into existence. The bill contains provisions to insure access to paper ballots, in order to verify the accuracy of voting results; to establish early voting in all states for federal elections; and to launch independent redistricting commissions, to address the problem of partisan gerrymandering.

A federal matching system for small-dollar political contributions would serve as a counterbalance to the sums that wealthy individuals and corporations pour into spending for political elections. Presidential and Vice-Presidential candidates would be required to release their tax returns. The bill also includes provisions for mandating transparency in digital-ad spending, strengthening disclosure policies regarding foreign gifts to officeholders, and strictly enforcing the Foreign Agents Registration Act.

A section focussing on voting rights is of particular interest. The Supreme Court’s ruling in Shelby essentially held that the Voting Rights Act was outmoded, relying on presumptions about racism, especially in Southern states, which didn’t reflect the progress that had been made since 1965, when the bill was signed. The Court, however, left open the possibility that Congress might bring it in line with more recent circumstances, if warranted. H.R. 1 could spur the creation of new formulas for determining which states should be subject to federal oversight. It might, for example, be possible to take into account recent voter-suppression efforts in Ohio, Wisconsin, North Dakota, and other states, thereby expanding the reach of the Act.

For those progressives who were wary of what the Democrats would do with their new majority in the House, H.R. 1 is as reassuring a start as anyone could have hoped for. But the civic fervor behind it has not been entirely welcomed on Capitol Hill. Mitch McConnell, the Senate Majority Leader, denounced H.R. 1 as “a power grab that’s smelling more and more like exactly what it is.” Setting aside the question of what a power grab smells like, McConnell’s outrage was striking, even in a period as cynical as this one. Taking aim at a provision that would make Election Day a day off for federal employees (with the idea that private companies would follow suit for their employees), McConnell said, “Just what America needs—another paid holiday,” then predicted that federal employees would use the time to volunteer for Democratic campaigns.

It’s not uncommon for a single bill to encompass such a wide range of concerns. But the concerns presented in H.R. 1 point to another unanswered question. For the past twenty months, public attention has been focussed on the special counsel Robert Mueller’s investigation into possible Russian interference in the 2016 election. Intelligence agencies, media outlets, and independent researchers have consistently pointed to Russian intentions to sway the electorate in Trump’s favor. Possible motivations for these efforts—from belated score-settling for the Cold War to alleviating sanctions—aren’t hard to discern. But we’ve seldom asked about American motivations in creating the conditions that facilitated such meddling. Russian attempts to influence American voters—including ad purchases on social media intended to foment racial division—coexisted with and benefitted from domestic attempts to discourage people from casting a vote.

American democracy is threatened by a hydra of vulnerabilities, most of them of our own making, but none of them beyond the notice of our adversaries. H.R. 1 is the most cogent corrective to these matters which we have yet seen. The calculations around it will most certainly be partisan, but it is the best hope for ending the corrosive practices that subtract citizens from the electorate. ♦

The forum / Re: Forum Decorum
« on: February 18, 2019, 06:20:34 PM »
Dictionary result for shemozzle
noun: schemozzle

    a state of chaos and confusion; a muddle.
    "the debate about climate change and how to deal with it is a shemozzle"

late 19th century: Yiddish, suggested by late Hebrew šel-lō'-mazzāl ‘of no luck’.

The politics / Re: The Media: Examples of Good AND Bad Journalism
« on: February 01, 2019, 07:41:38 PM »
Masha Gessen is brilliant (link above)! Here's some of her take which may reconcile some of the opposing views of our otherwise well-intentioned colleagues:

What we are observing is not most accurately described as the subversion of American democracy by a hostile power. Instead, it is an attempt at state capture by an international crime syndicate. What unites Yanukovych, Veselnitskaya, Manafort, Stone, WikiLeaks’s Julian Assange, the Russian troll factory, the Trump campaign staffer George Papadopoulos and his partners in crime, the “Professor” (whose academic credentials are in doubt), and the “Female Russian National” (who appears to have fraudulently presented herself as Putin’s niece) is that they are all crooks and frauds. This is not a moral assessment, or an attempt to downplay their importance. It is an attempt to stop talking in terms of states and geopolitics and begin looking at Mafias and profits.

The Hungarian sociologist Bálint Magyar, who created the concept of the “post-Communist mafia state,” has just finished editing a new collection of articles called “Stubborn Structures: Reconceptualizing Post-Communist Regimes” .... Magyar describes the Mafia state as one run by a “patron” and his “court”—put another way, the boss and his clan—who appropriate public resources and the institutions of the state for their private use and profit. When I talked to Magyar on the phone on Monday, he told me that Trump is “like a Mafia boss without a Mafia. Trump cannot transform the United States into a Mafia state, of course, but he still acts like a Mafia boss.” Putin, on the other hand, “is a Mafia boss with a real Mafia, which has turned the whole state into a criminal state.” Still, he said, “the behavior at the top is the same.”

The Mafia state is efficient in its own way. It does not take over all state institutions, but absorbs only the ones necessary for extracting profit. Some structures therefore continue to work as though they were part of a normal state.

A Mafia state, on the other hand, acts only in the personal profit-seeking interests of the clan. “That’s not a deviation,” Magyar said. “It’s a substantive, structural characteristic of the state. The state itself, at the top, works as a criminal organization.”

When members of the American media cover the story of Russian meddling, they implicitly portray Russia as a normal state, and the influence operation as an undertaking of the state aimed at furthering Russia’s national interests. This strikes Russians as absurd. ....

By the metrics of a Mafia state, though, the Trump Presidency has yielded great results for Russia. A Mafia boss craves respect, loyalty, and perceived power. Trump’s deference to Putin and the widespread public perception of Putin’s influence over Trump have lifted Putin’s stature beyond what I suspect could have been his wildest dreams. As happens in a Mafia state, most of the benefit accrues to the patron personally. But some of the profit goes to the clan. Over the weekend, we learned that the Treasury Department has lifted sanctions on companies that belong to Oleg Deripaska, a member of Putin’s “court” who once lent millions of dollars to Manafort. If a ragtag team employed by or otherwise connected to the Russian Mafia state tried to aid a similar collection of crooks and frauds to elect Trump—as it increasingly looks like they did—then the Deripaska news helps explain their motivations. The story is not that Putin is masterminding a vast and brilliant attack on Western democracy. The story, it appears, is that the Russian Mafia state is cultivating profit-yielding relationships with the aspiring Mafia boss of the U.S. and his band of crooks, subverting democratic institutions in the process.

Antarctica / Re: PIG has calved
« on: February 01, 2019, 07:25:31 PM »
Sorry Stephan. I've removed it, should have been more careful. Of course!

The politics / Re: The Media: Examples of Good AND Bad Journalism
« on: February 01, 2019, 05:38:09 PM »
In my New Yorker (a wonderful US publication) there was a bit about Germans preferring Russia. It comes to a cheerful conclusion. As I look at the website, I quickly found two more articles to waste people's time.

Masha Gessen is a particular favorite, a brilliant Russian lesbian with a tolerant and eccentric point of view.

Trump Lost the Shutdown, But At Least God Made Him President, and He’s Building That Wall
In recent months, she has shared calls for Merkel to leave office, memes portraying Vladimir Putin as a protector of decent Germans, and a string of posts by a newly founded association called Jews in the Alternative for Germany.

By the way, though I try to steer clear and only post third-party info that might provide much absent and needed information, the prejudice and distortion in the permitted clique above is staggering. I get it, you all believe the same thing, and others need not intrude. However ...

Greenwald is now living in a very expensive area, safe in disintegrating and dangerous Brazil, now being run by Bolsonaro who is happy to tame the Amazon rainforest for profit, since it serves a secondary purpose of genociding the indigenous populations who are in the way of his friends' profits.

imnsho, Greenwald has lost his way. I was a fan in the Snowden days, but he's got too much hate, as usual, for decent people, and too much tolerance for leadership that exploits hatred and victim blaming. I was a bit intrigued by this, which seemed to indicate he might be trying to open his mind:

Sandgren had tweeted, retweeted, or “liked” disparaging remarks about Muslims and gays; he had highlighted an article suggesting that recent migration into Europe could be described as “Operation European Population Replacement”; he had called Marx’s ideas worse than Hitler’s. He had also promoted the Pizzagate conspiracy theory, which accuses Hillary Clinton of human trafficking. Sandgren told reporters that, though he didn’t support the alt-right, he did find “some of the content interesting.”

This became a small news story. Sandgren then lost his quarter-final, and, at the subsequent press conference, he read a statement condemning the media’s willingness to “turn neighbor against neighbor.” Later that day, he was surprised to receive a supportive message from Glenn Greenwald, the journalist, whom he followed on Twitter. (Sandgren also followed Roger Federer, Peter Thiel, and Paul Joseph Watson, of Infowars.)

Infowars is Alex Jones, by the way.

Perhaps some of you might become better acquainted and employ less prejudiced hearsay:

But if anyone has the chops to manage Mr. Trump’s brattiness, it is Ms. Pelosi ... [who] is not unfamiliar with his type, having risen to political prominence in a field full of arrogant, entitled, patronizing men.

Along the way, she has been repeatedly underestimated. In 1985, having reached the top of the California Democratic Party, she campaigned, unsuccessfully, to head the national party. As Ms. Pelosi tells it, one union organizer dismissed her as “an airhead.” Other players told her that Democrats wouldn’t risk elevating a woman to such a high-profile post on the heels of Walter Mondale’s 1984 presidential loss with Geraldine Ferraro as his running mate. Ms. Pelosi never forgot those slights.

Upon arriving in Congress in 1987, she had to carve out a space in what was then still an old white boys’ club. She succeeded through a combination of sweat, savvy and sheer will. She learned how Congress works, both as an institution and as a collection of egos. As she showed in quashing a challenge to her leadership after the midterm elections, she knows how to find people’s pressure points.

She also knows how to handle pressure. As House minority leader, she helped derail President George W. Bush’s efforts to privatize Social Security by ignoring the conventional wisdom that Democrats needed to offer an alternative plan. Resisting criticism from both the White House and her own conference, Ms. Pelosi focused on taking down Mr. Bush’s plan.

This time around, Ms. Pelosi is aiming not merely to rein in the out-of-control president but, in the process, to deflate his cherished image as a Master of the Universe. She has mocked Mr. Trump’s obsession with what she terms his “manhood” and gone all in with the grandmother-wrangling-an-unruly-child shtick. What he paints as strong leadership and standing his ground, she dismisses as a temper tantrum. Rather than outrage or disbelief, Ms. Pelosi’s most common response to Mr. Trump amounts to one long, exasperated eye roll.

…. few politicians are as well equipped to weather a political storm. Ms. Pelosi has been a polarizing figure for longer than most members have been in Congress. For years, Republicans have been using her as a boogeyman, painting pretty much every Democratic candidate nationwide as a tool of her and her radical San Francisco agenda. As a result, her public appeal is much like that of the Senate majority leader, Mitch McConnell, slightly above a root canal. But while Pelosi-bashing has its charms — Republican voters do love hating on the speaker — as the midterms showed, it also has its limits.

For her part, Ms. Pelosi is not overly concerned with personal popularity.
The big question is whether she can avoid getting pulled down into the muck right along with him.

The politics / Re: The Media: Examples of Good AND Bad Journalism
« on: January 16, 2019, 10:23:43 PM »
As usual, I have the impression you either didn't read it or made no effort to set aside your bias when you did so. Ignoring what one doesn't want to think about and promoting what one prefers is no way to discern the truth.

The posse "wins". The earth loses.

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