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Messages - wili

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The rest / Re: The problem of social media
« on: Today at 02:43:39 AM »
The problem is that some of the 'echos' in the echo chamber are AI controlled bots, honing their skills at individual manipulation 24/7.

The rest / Re: Russiagate
« on: March 23, 2018, 11:16:07 PM »
"What does one call a country where the appointee of an appointee decides who will rule the land?"

Ummm, a country ruled by law??

Do you think all elected officials should always be above the law?

The rest / Re: Russiagate
« on: March 20, 2018, 03:52:17 PM »

Bernie Sanders: Russia and Stormy Daniels distract us from real problem of inequality

More than a million viewers watch online as Sanders joins likes of Michael Moore and Elizabeth Warren to talk poverty

 ;D ;D ;D

I'll attempt to save the thread from drifting into meaningfulness, by diverting back into the mythological realm.

Hel was originally a Norse goddess who lived in a house on the north side of a hill with all doors and windows always open and always facing north. Those ancient (and probably most modern) Scandinavians knew something about positioning a house for maximum (or in this case minimum) solar warming benefit!

Arctic sea ice / Re: What's new in the Arctic ?
« on: March 16, 2018, 03:50:59 AM »

Polar Warming Spawns More Severe Winter Storms

So there’s a lot of groundbreaking work going on in the climate sciences right now. And a major focus is evidence that winter polar warming events are increasingly connected to blizzards and storms in places like Europe and North America. Storms that are both historically powerful and that occur with greater frequency...

Consequences / Re: Near Term Human Extinction
« on: March 07, 2018, 10:44:09 PM »
mag said:

there will be no human extinction due to global worming

...but how about worm extinction due to global de-worming??  ;D ;D

The rest / Re: The Trump Presidency (was "Presidential Poll")
« on: March 06, 2018, 09:49:12 PM »
Thanks for that, Buddy. I suspect that the whole kerfuffle (or cofufeh? :) ) about Sam Nunberg was actually a (largely successful) attempt to distract the media from the very significant Cohen to Daniels payment...just a thought.

Consequences / Re: Near Term Human Extinction
« on: March 03, 2018, 04:54:17 PM »
Wti, elements of your position above seem rather confused. Water vapor is a fast ('Charney') feedback, so the ~1 degree C of warming we have already seen is not just from CO2, but from CO2 plus water vapor plus a couple other Charney feedbacks (clouds and sea ice).

It is the slower (but not all that slow) feedbacks that are going to start hitting us hard, plus loss of the 'aerosol parasol.'

Arctic sea ice / Re: The 2017/2018 freezing season
« on: February 26, 2018, 03:45:23 AM »
rs on some of the...odd...goings on in the Arctic: "There's a Hole in Winter's Heart..."

Consequences / Re: Near Term Human Extinction
« on: February 22, 2018, 05:59:15 AM »
One thing to keep in mind that in the Sixth Great Mass Extinction that we are already deep in the middle of, far before anything like the worst results of GW kick in (not to mention various other calamities mentioned here, and others), tens to hundreds of species are already going extinct every single day.

All of humanity is, in the end, just one other species.

We are not immune.

Consequences / Re: Near Term Human Extinction
« on: February 22, 2018, 04:03:31 AM »
Well, if there were a 99.99 % reduction in the human population, that would, as you suggest, just leave few smallish enclaves of humans. But then it would only take a major natural or human disaster to wipe any one of those out, and there will be more and more of both of those on hand to do the job.

So what you say may be true (none of us is likely to be around to witness the results either way), but I can't see how one can completely confidently rule out the possibility of total extinction.

Just sayin

Consequences / Re: Near Term Human Extinction
« on: February 21, 2018, 06:53:36 AM »
bbr, sorry, I should have been more specific. The relevant aerosols for this discussion (cooling) are primarily the sulfate aerosols, and even more specifically sulfur dioxide, the main anthropogenic source of which is coal combustion, except where scrubbers have been installed.

But certainly in general the whole aerosol issue is much more complex than the proponents of certain imminent human extinction generally seem to want to acknowledge.

Policy and solutions / Re: The Hyperloop
« on: February 20, 2018, 05:03:12 PM »
I say this with no acrimony, but I do find development of hyperloop a waste of precious resources that could be much more effectively deployed elsewhere. But then I have the same opinion almost all space travel (and air travel, for that matter).

Why are we in such a rush to get somewhere else? And whatever the bizarre bases of such impulses, why should we be indulging such wasteful and irrational urges?

I haven't flown for about 20 years and have done no long distance travel for about a decade and I seem to be no worse for it, and in fact far more connected to my local community (and the money saved is handy too).

There are basic human needs that are going unaddressed for billions of people every day: access to clean water, access to adequate healthy food, housing, financial security, health....

There is no basic human need to travel across the planet at speeds near the speed of sound.

There just isn't.

(OK, maybe there was just a little whiff of acrimony in that last bit...sorry  :-\ ::))

Consequences / Re: Near Term Human Extinction
« on: February 20, 2018, 08:47:40 AM »
As I understand it, geront, the people that are claiming such things  assume that aerosols are blocking much more insolation than most models admit so that removing them suddenly (as may happen at least partially in a major global economic crash) would lead to a pretty immediate jump in global (atmospheric) temps of about 2 C. Another assumption is that such a sudden and drastic jump would rapidly trigger major and rapid carbon feedbacks of various sorts (tundra, other soils, massive wild fires...)

It all seems to me like too many assumptions that everything will always happen at or beyond the high end of the catastrophically bad side of the best current predictions...

but on the other hand that has pretty much been the trend recently  :-\

Consequences / Re: Near Term Human Extinction
« on: February 20, 2018, 05:51:19 AM »
Good point, oren. But don't those lags themselves have lags?

If atmospheric temperature suddenly jumped up 5 or so degrees C for whatever reason, how long would it take the oceans etc to absorb the better part of that heat? Not instantaneously, I presume.

The rest / Re: The problem of Corporate Democrats and how to kick them out
« on: February 15, 2018, 08:32:59 AM »
Thanks for the thoughtful reply, Steve.

I'm glad you acknowledge that at least some of the wealthy use at least some of their money to make sure that the system makes them even more wealthy. That includes influencing legislation and policies. 

Unfortunately, that now means that mostly policy no longer reflects what most people want, but rather what best serves the interests of those who can pay for the most lobbyists and who make the most political contributions.

And see the 2014 study by Gillens and Page which concluded: "When a majority of citizens disagrees with economic elites and/or with organized interests, they generally lose."

Referenced at the end of this article:

Where they point out: "The study found that while economic elites’ and business groups’ preferences often result in policy changes, public opinion has virtually no influence on policy outcomes"

The rest / Re: The problem of Corporate Democrats and how to kick them out
« on: February 15, 2018, 03:32:28 AM »
Steve wrote: "Another point is that great concentrations of wealth, while bad, are not nearly as bad as an economic system that tends to drive greater and greater concentrations."

I'm mostly just trying to follow along with the conversation here, and most of what you are saying seems to make some sense even where I don't agree 100%.

But this claim above confused me. Could you explain this a bit? Are you saying that some other system than the current one in the US has been better at concentrating wealth?

Because among  modern industrial countries ('first world') at least, the US has about as highest level of a wealth, and a large number of 'third world' countries are considerably better. See the 'Gini Coefficients' at:

Bu maybe I'm misunderstanding or misinterpreting your statement above?

The rest / Re: The problem of Corporate Democrats and how to kick them out
« on: February 10, 2018, 05:28:07 AM »
Soooo, you're saying Feinstein was a central part of turning the Dems into Repug-light??

Thanks for clarifying your position.  :o

The rest / Re: The Trump Presidency (was "Presidential Poll")
« on: February 08, 2018, 09:02:54 PM »
"Russian Collusion narrative is B.S."

Terry, I don't recall him saying anything like that exactly. Only that given the number of times America has inserted itself into other countries democratic processes, the reaction of shock and dismay is a bit ironic when another country (Russia) is suspected of trying to influence the US election.

But I'd be happy to be corrected if I am remembering his position incorrectly. Do you have a link to support your claim?

The rest / Re: Russiagate
« on: February 07, 2018, 12:31:50 PM »
ASLR, have you seen the episode of the documentary series 'Dirty Money' on Trump called 'CONfidence Man'?

Also, I found this WaPo headline...interesting:

More Russians are sure of the U.S. meddling in their politics than the other way around, poll finds

The rest / Re: The problem of Corporate Democrats and how to kick them out
« on: February 05, 2018, 12:56:19 PM »
Well put.

"their hands are tied because of this system"

I'm guessing there are many on both sides who feel this way. And I do think that at least some Trump supporters thought he was the man who could change that system, or blow it up.

He hasn't been that kind of reformer so far.

Policy and solutions / Re: Renewable Energy
« on: February 05, 2018, 12:51:35 PM »
People with rooftop solar need to organize and unionize, so they can collectively bargain for the best rates, and if/when there are enough of them, they can threaten to go 'on strike' when need/rates are highest unless they get better rates for the electricity they provide.

The rest / Re: The Trump Presidency (was "Presidential Poll")
« on: February 05, 2018, 04:04:22 AM »
Wow, that' not what I've been hearing, but a happy development is true.

But is that before the hundreds of millions of Koch $$$ kicks in?  :-\

Policy and solutions / Re: Aviation
« on: January 30, 2018, 07:38:36 PM »
Or you could tax jet fuel, which many states don't, and others barely do. And increase the tax nationally (couldn't find data ready at had on that).

The title of this article suggests that in the UK at least, jet fuel isn't taxed at all:

Also note:

Article 24 of the [1944 Convention of International Civil Aviation] requires all contracting states not to charge duty on aviation fuel already on board any aircraft that has arrived in their territory from another contracting state. Further to this, the exemption of airlines from national taxes and customs duties on a range of aviation-related goods, including parts, stores and fuel is a standard element of the network of bilateral ‘Air Service Agreements’ (ASAs) between individual countries.

Looks like it's time to renegotiate that old agreement!

Of course a general tax on carbon would go some way in this direction. I do think, though, that at this point stronger measures are called for.

Policy and solutions / Re: Aviation
« on: January 30, 2018, 06:24:36 PM »
"solution for rapid long distance travel"

Do a lot less or none of it.

It's never going to be sustainable for hundreds of millions of people to be constantly zipping around the globe, mostly for frivolous activities or things that could be done over the internet.

It's time we just wake up to this fact and start scaling back our obsession over being somewhere else.

(I haven't been on a plane in 15 years, and I had a party to celebrate it!  :) )

Consequences / Re: Climate change, the ocean, agriculture, and FOOD
« on: January 30, 2018, 12:50:48 PM »
Perennial grains like kernza, developed by Wes Jackson and others at the Land Institute, may hold more promise, though I'm not sure rigorous tests have been done yet on its long term effectiveness at carbon sequestration.

A local brewery (Fair State, Minneapolis, MN, USA; also a collective!) recently featured an ale brewed with kernza, but I haven't had a chance to sample it yet, unfortunately.

Consequences / Re: Climate change, the ocean, agriculture, and FOOD
« on: January 30, 2018, 12:48:03 PM »

No-till farming is widely used in the United States and the number of acres managed in this way continues to grow. This growth is supported by a decrease in costs related to tillage; no-till management results in fewer passes with equipment for approximately equal harvests, and the crop residue prevents evaporation of rainfall and increases water infiltration into the soil.

Unfortunately, it is also often done with some increases in herbicide, since tilling is one way to cut down weeds as they are first sprouting in the spring. But a good cover crop that is then 'crimped' is equally effective, I am told.

Arctic sea ice / Re: Stupid Questions :o
« on: January 29, 2018, 03:18:49 PM »
Has the earth's rotation sped up from the loss of glacier and ice sheet ice to the sea?

Or has that been offset by all the minerals and fossil fuels we've dragged up from the depths to the surface (and spewed into the air), and from all the water we hold back in dams, and ~8% increase in water vapor from GW?

Does anyone measure or keep track of such things? I know we would be talking about minuscule differences, but...hey, that's what stupid questions sections are for, right?

Have you heard of the book "Radical Simplicity" by Jim Merkel. That's the most detailed footprint guide that I've seen (he has you weigh everything in your house). But it's not specifically a carbon footprint, iirc.

Consequences / Re: 2018 Droughts
« on: January 25, 2018, 01:17:00 PM »

The rest / Re: The Trump Presidency (was "Presidential Poll")
« on: January 24, 2018, 04:24:26 PM »
Good points, Buddy. But it's much more than that. His policies and appointments... have already hurt women in many ways and will likely continue to hurt them for another generation or more.

Science / Re: Earthquakes and climate change
« on: January 23, 2018, 03:12:27 PM »

Tsunami advisory canceled after magnitude 7.9 earthquake off Alaska

Thanks for the added info, ASLR.

"Rapid change now underway on Thwaites Glacier (TG) raises concern that a threshold for unstoppable grounding line retreat has been or is about to be crossed"

I hadn't heard it put quite that way in writing in the scientific literature yet, but I obviously have not been paying close enough attention.

This sounds kind of...bad...

Consequences / Re: Conservative Scientists & its Consequences
« on: January 22, 2018, 10:52:34 PM »
Thanks for linking this RC piece, ASRL.

That was exactly my impression of this study. Nice to hear my general feeling about it confirmed in much clearer terms than I could muster by professionals in the field!

Policy and solutions / Re: Solar Roadways
« on: January 22, 2018, 04:31:30 AM »
I live in a city and we have heavy fog not too irregularly. But then there are some ten lakes inside the city and a mighty river (Mississippi), so may we're the 'exception that proves the rule'?

Consequences / Re: 2018 Droughts
« on: January 20, 2018, 03:09:37 PM »
Scribbler on how Iranian drought is increasing political instability (shades of Syria):

The rest / Re: The Trump Presidency (was "Presidential Poll")
« on: January 20, 2018, 02:34:57 PM »
Now, apparently, Trump wants to outlaw natural birth in the ninth month of pregnancy:

“Right now, in a number of states, the laws allow a baby to be born from his or her mother’s womb in the ninth month,” Trump said. “It is wrong. It has to change.”

 ;D ;D

Consequences / Re: Places becoming less livable
« on: January 16, 2018, 12:04:53 AM »
A consequence of places becoming less livable is that people from those newly unlivable places necessarily either die or become refugees:

Study finds that global warming exacerbates refugee crises

Higher temperatures increase the number of people seeking asylum in the EU

Policy and solutions / Re: Nuclear Power
« on: January 13, 2018, 02:49:46 AM »
Armed raid on nuclear workers' housing raises fears over Brazil's two reactors

This kind of thing will occur more and more frequently with worse and worse outcome as we go further and further down the rabbit whole of societal collapse...

then all the wet dreams of 'clean, free, un-meterable nuke power' will rapidly turn into horrific living nightmares...

Consequences / 2018 Droughts
« on: January 12, 2018, 07:03:15 AM »
The World’s First Major City to Run Out of Water May Have Just Over Three Months Left
    It’s the height of summer in Cape Town, and the southwesternmost region of South Africa is gripped by a catastrophic water shortage. Unless the city adopts widespread rationing, the government says, the taps “will be turned off” on April 22, 2018, because there will be no more water to deliver.

        ... “It’s not an impending crisis—we’re deep, deep, deep in crisis.”

Cape Town, South Africa, Is Running Out of Water

Cape Town, home to more than 4 million, is in the midst of the worst drought to hit South Africa in more than 100 years.

City officials say they will “turn off the tap” in April when dam levels are expected to reach 13.5 percent of capacity.

The situation is dire. Dams supplying the city with usable water dropped this week to 29.7 percent, the city of Cape Town posted to Facebook on Wednesday. Only 19.7 percent of the water is usable. Several times a day, the city encourages residents via social media to conserve water.

Mayor De Lille says she hopes it won’t come down to Day Zero, but the city is already planning for that eventuality. Should the city be forced to turn off the taps, 200 water stations guarded by police and the military will be set up to ration out roughly 6.6 gallons (25 liters) of water per day per resident.

Cape Town isn’t the only city dealing with water issues in a warming world.

The World Wildlife Fund estimates two-thirds of the world may face water shortages by 2025 as droughts become more frequent because of global warming.

thnx to vox at poforums for these

Policy and solutions / Re: Solar Roadways
« on: January 11, 2018, 05:45:35 AM »
Daylight robbery: thieves steal chunk of China's new solar highway

Consequences / Re: Population: Public Enemy No. 1
« on: January 01, 2018, 10:31:10 PM »
It always struck me that AC should be the appliance most practically and easily sold with dedicated plug-n-play solar panels. You generally need AC most when the sun is shining, and if you can cool the temp of your home or apt enough in the afternoon, they will likely keep fairly cool through the night. I assume AC can be manufactured to take direct current right from the panel, right?

Dehumidifiers would likely also get people most of the way to the comfort they seek, at a much lower electric demand.

But yeah, the 'human feedback' you point out here is one of many that are likely to bite us. The US, of course, has long been at the forefront of AC adoption, and could point the way toward various alternatives.

The rest / Re: Russiagate
« on: December 31, 2017, 12:36:53 PM »
Susan said: "Democrats are going to win big in November"

Only if we work furiously to make it happen.

Let's not get complacent like some did before the last election because the polls looked favorable.

Thanks, oren and TB.

That concept was familiar to me, but I hadn't heard the phrase 'freshwater hosing' applied to it. Makes sense, though.

"freshwater hosing events"

Sorry, could you briefly explain what that is, or provide a link that does. Thanks.

Policy and solutions / Re: Cars, cars and more cars. And trucks, and....
« on: December 29, 2017, 04:38:54 PM »
Thanks for those calculations, Geoff.

I don't know if you noticed this link above, but the first lecture by K. Anderson ends with a particularly hard hitting moral plea to turn away from air travel, so I thought you might be interesting. The lecture starts at 20 minutes and the air travel bit is around the 50 minute mark.

Policy and solutions / Re: Nuclear Power
« on: December 18, 2017, 09:49:08 PM »
Nicely put, Bob.

Policy and solutions / Re: Energy Efficiency: The “First Fuel”
« on: December 16, 2017, 08:04:07 PM »
"To do that we'd have to cut electricity use enough to not need coal and natural gas."

Not really, just think of cutting back on electricity as another wedge in your pie chart. The more that it can take out of coal and NG, the easier it is for alternatives to outpace them. As you say, efficiency can be part of that wedge of non-coal/gas use, as long as we can avoid unintended consequences like 'Jevons Paradox.'

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