Saturday, August 20, 2011

Via JMG: Bank of America Will "Help Perry Out"

So says one of their executives, caught on tape.

reposted from Joe

Afternoon up at the Templo Zen Pico de Raios, Ouro Preto

UFOP from the Templo

Maria & Cyro, Maria is one of the good folks who run the place!

The Doors of the Mosteiro Zen Pico de Raios, Ouro Preto - MG

Via Climate Progress: Global News: Deforestation in Brazil’s Amazon up 15%

Cattle walks in a burnt area of the Amazon rain forest (AFP/File)
Deforestation in Brazil’s Amazon up 15%
Deforestation in Brazil’s Amazon increased by 15 percent during the past 12 months, the National Institute for Space Research (INPE) said Wednesday.
From July 2010 to July 2011 the vast South American rainforest lost 2,654 square kilometers (1,649 square miles) of vegetation in the states of Mato Grosso and Para, according to a preliminary analysis of satellite photos.
The year before, 2,295 square kilometers (1,426 square miles) were destroyed over that time period.
This July, 225 square kilometers (139 square miles) were lost to deforestation, though this was significantly less than the 485 square kilometers (301 square miles) destroyed in July 2010.
In April 477 square kilometers (296 square miles) were destroyed, with more than 95 percent of the devastation taking place in Mato Grosso, which is a major agricultural frontier used for cattle ranches and soybean farming.
Wednesday’s figures were calculated from a satellite system known as DETER, which detects in real time when an area larger than 61 acres is destroyed, though its results are not always exact due to cloud cover.
Brazil, the world’s fifth largest country by area, has 5.3 million square kilometers of jungle and forests — mostly in the Amazon river basin — of which only 1.7 million are under state protection.

Vua Climate Progress: Washington Post Labels Global Warming a ‘Wedge Issue’ — But Doesn’t Seem to Know What That Term Means

The second lead story in today’s Washington post is a so-so piece on climate science merged with a very confused political analysis.
Contrary to the sub-head, for instance, the scientific consensus — or, more accurately, the scientific understanding — around climate change and its threat to humanity has strengthened considerably in the last few years (see links below).
But it is the use of the term “wedge issue,” which the article never defines, that is the source of the political mischief.  For the record, “A wedge issue is a social or political issue, often of a divisive or otherwise controversial nature, which splits apart or creates a ‘wedge’ in the support base of one political group.”
Where there is confusion on climate change and politics, Roger Pielke, Jr., is often found.  The article quotes him as the sole source on the “wedge issue” claim:
“Climate change has become a wedge issue,” said Roger Pielke Jr., a University of Colorado professor who has written extensively on the climate debate. “It’s today’s flag-burning or today’s partial-birth-abortion issue.”
Pielke cites two well-known wedge issues that split Democrats, issues that Republicans have used to their advantage to drive a wedge between liberal Democrats and more moderate or conservative ones (as well as independents)
But the article actually makes the case that climate change is an issue splitting Republicans, and thus — intentionally or otherwise — it makes the case that global warming potentially can be used to the advantage of progressives.  That isn’t typically the view of Pielke and his fellow “climate pragmatists,” who argue that the best way climate activists and others can achieve  mitigation and adaptation policies is to downplay climate change or stop talking about it entirely.  Of course, there  is no evidence for this view whatsoever and much evidence to the contrary (see “Can you solve global warming without talking about global warming?” and “The GOP War Against Climate Adaptation“).
That said, the article actually seems to treat the term “wedge issue” as if it just means  “divisive issue” or “controversial issue.”  Let’s look at the story:

Four years ago in New Hampshire, campaigning for the Republican presidential nomination, John McCain said to voters, “I do agree with the majority of scientific opinion, that climate change is taking place and it’s a result of human activity, which generates greenhouse gases.” He made global warming a key element of every New Hampshire stump speech.
This week in New Hampshire, the governor of Texas and newest presidential contender, Rick Perry, said scientists have manipulated data to support their “unproven” theory of human-influenced global warming. He said increasing numbers of scientists have disavowed the theory altogether.
This is not simply a case of two very different politicians saying two very different things. The political discussion about global warming has lurched dramatically in four years — even as the scientific consensus has changed little. McCain’s 2007 description remains the scientific consensus: Human activity, including the burning of fossil fuels, is pumping carbon dioxide and other greenhouse gases into the atmosphere and warming the planet.
Two things.  First, why don’t the authors of this piece mention the fact that the Washington Post itself has already given Perry “4 Pinocchios” for his climate lies?
Second, the scientific understanding around climate change and its threat to humanity has strengthened considerably in the last few years.  This may not seem like a large point, but this was a front-page story and another seriously wasted opportunity  to explain what’s really happening in the science.  That goes double in a piece that repeats some denier myths and talking points (which I may discuss in a later post).
Our  understanding of basic climate science is so strong now that the U.S. National Academy of Sciences concluded its recent review of climate science, saying it is a “settled fact” that “the Earth system is warming and that much of this warming is very likely due to human activities.”  Last year, Time magazine reported on a comprehensive new review paper of “100 peer-reviewed post-IPCC studies” in an article titled, “Report: The Case for Global Warming Stronger Than Ever” noting:
By looking at a wide range of observations from all over the world,  the Met Office study concludes that the fingerprint of human influence on climate is stronger than ever. “We can say with a very high significance level that the effects we see in the climate cannot be attributed to any other forcings [factors that push the climate in one direction or another],” says study co-author Gabriele Hegerl of the University of Edinburgh.
In a AAAS presentation last year, the late William R. Freudenburg of UC Santa Barbara discussed his research on “the Asymmetry of Scientific Challenge“: New scientific findings are found to be more than twenty times as likely to indicate that global climate disruption is “worse than previously expected,” rather than “not as bad as previously expected.”
Another missed opportunity for the Post.  Back to the story:
But that scientific conclusion has become a lively point of debate in the GOP presidential campaign. Joining Perry on the skeptical side, for example, is Rep. Michele Bachmann (R-Minn.), who suggested Wednesday that “manufactured science” underpins what a questioner called the “man-made climate-change myth.”
The nominal GOP front-runner, Mitt Romney, drew sharp fire from conservatives when he said in June that he accepts the scientific view that the planet is getting warmer and that humans are part of the reason. Former Utah governor Jon Huntsman Jr. (R) on Thursday tweeted: “To be clear. I believe in evolution and trust scientists on global warming. Call me crazy.”
“Climate change has become a wedge issue,” said Roger Pielke Jr., a University of Colorado professor who has written extensively on the climate debate. “It’s today’s flag-burning or today’s partial-birth-abortion issue.”
Historically, climate change has ranked near the bottom of issues that voters care about as they evaluate presidential candidates. It wasn’t a factor in 2008’s primary season or general election. The major parties’ nominees endorsed the scientific consensus and believed that the government should curb carbon emissions.
Again, the last paragraph above suggests that the Post mistakenly thinks the term “wedge issue” merely means “politically divisive” — that climate change hasn’t been politically controversial or the source of “hot politics,” but now it is.  I think the Post makes a serious mistake in not defining the term explicitly because the general reader can’t possibly know exactly what argument the reporters are making.
Ironically –  and possibly unintentionally — the piece makes a strong case that climate change has become a wedge issue dividing Republicans.  That’s what Hunstman’s viral tweet suggests.
And the story goes further:
During this period, Americans — particularly conservative Republicans — became less convinced about global-warming science….
A Pew Research Center poll published in October 2010 showed that over the previous four years, the number of respondents believing there is “solid evidence” that the Earth is warming dropped from 79 percent to 59 percent. There was a striking divide along partisan lines: Some 79 percent of Democrats believed in global warming, compared with 38 percent of Republicans.  A Washington Post-ABC News poll in November 2009 found conservative Republicans were least likely to believe global warming was occurring, with 45 percent saying it was happening.
The Post should have pointed out that that in the October 2010 poll, 56% of independents agree there is “solid evidence” that the Earth is warming, and 62% of independents agree that it is a “very serious” or “somewhat serious” problem.  Indeed,  independents in that poll say by a 44 to 31 majority  it is “a problem requiring immediate government action.”
This view is supported by considerable polling, including an analysis last month from Stanford professor Jon Krosnick, which found:
Political candidates get more votes by taking a “green” position on climate change – acknowledging that global warming is occurring, recognizing that human activities are at least partially to blame and advocating the need for action – according to a June 2011 study by researchers at Stanford University.
It may have come into play in last year’s elections — see “Did Ken Buck’s global warming denial cost the Tea Party favorite a Senate seat?” — though as that story makes clear, it is not possible to disaggregate climate change from other issues in the overwhelming majority of campaigns.
The bottom line is that the Post wasn’t clear in what it was arguing, but the extent that it  understands what “wedge issue” actually means, the piece adds to the growing evidence that global warming divides Republicans — and that it is a issue, which can be used by  progressives to divide the extreme anti-science Republicans, who have  taken over the party via the Tea Party, from moderates and independents.


ÚTIL E MORTAL (Dr. Sérgio Teixeira)

Se seu cabelo está caindo, desconfie do alumínio... 

Este metal, quando está excessivo no organismo, provoca grande oleosidade no couro cabeludo, que vai sufocar a raiz dos cabelos.
Usar xampus contra a oleosidade ajuda, mas se você não eliminar a causa, vai perder muito cabelo. Muitas vezes, a queda de cabelos vem acompanhada de dormências ou formigamentos quando se fica na mesma posição (com as pernas cruzadas, por exemplo).
Além dos seus cabelos, todo o seu organismo está sendo prejudicado: o alumínio deposita-se no cérebro, causando o mal de Alzheimer (esclerose mental precoce) e expulsa o cálcio dos ossos, produzindo a osteoporose.
Esse cálcio vai se depositar em outros lugares, produzindo bursite, tártaro nos dentes, bico de papagaio, cálculos renais...
E também vai para dentro das suas artérias, estimulando a pressão alta e a possibilidade de isquemias cardíacas (infarto), cerebrais (trombose) e genitais (frigidez e impotência).
Para o Dr. Mauro Tarandach, da Sociedade Brasileira de Pediatria, está bem claro o papel do alumínio nas doenças da infância, graças ao avanço da biologia molecular no que tange ao papel dos oligoelementos na fisiologia e na patologia.
Os sintomas clínicos da intoxicação por alumínio nas crianças, além da hiperatividade e da indisciplina, são muitos: anemia microcítica hipocrômica refratária ao tratamento com ferro, alterações ósseas e renais, anorexia e até psicoses, o que se agrava com a continuidade da intoxicação.
Atualmente se utiliza a biorressonância para avaliar o nível do alumínio e outros metais. O método é muito menos dispendioso, podendo ser utilizado no consultório ou na casa do paciente.
E como o alumínio entra no organismo?
Através das panelas de alumínio, por exemplo, que vêm sendo proibidas em muitos países do mundo.
Na Itália, famosa por seus restaurantes, nenhum deles pode usar essas panelas, devido à proibição do governo italiano. 
É que as panelas de alumínio contaminam a comida intensamente.
Para você ter uma idéia: pesquisa da Universidade do Paraná demonstrou que as panelas vendidas no Brasil deixam resíduos de alumínio nos alimentos que vão de 700 a 1.400 vezes acima do permitido.
Isso só ao preparar a comida. Se esta ficar guardada na panela por algumas horas, ou de um dia para o outro, este valor pode triplicar ou quintuplicar. 
Viu por que vale a pena trocar de panelas?
Mas não é só!!! Sabe as latinhas de refrigerantes e cervejas, hoje tão difundidas no Brasil??? Pesquisas do Departamento de Química da PUC demonstrou que elas não são fabricadas de acordo com os padrões internacionais.
Em conseqüência, seu refrigerante predileto pode conter quase 600 vezes mais de alumínio do que se estivesse na garrafa.
E além do alumínio, foram demonstrados pelo mesmo estudo mais 12 outros metais altamente perigosos para a saúde nessas latinhas, como o manganês, que causa o mal de Parkinson, o cádmio, que causa psicoses, o chumbo, encontrado no organismo de muitos assassinos, e outros.
Prefira SEMPRE as garrafas, OK???
Descoberto em 1809, o alumínio é um metal muito leve (só é mais pesado do que o magnésio) e já foi muito caro. Naquela época, Napoleão III, imperador da França, pagou 150 mil libras esterlinas (mais ou menos 300 Mil reais) por um jogo de talheres de alumínio.
Esse metal tem espantosa versatilidade, sendo utilizado em muitas ligas metálicas.
Depois do aço, é o metal mais usado no mundo, seja em panelas, embalagens aluminizadas, latas de refrigerantes e cervejas, antiácidos e desodorantes antitranspirantes, assim como vasilhames para cães e gatos comerem e beberem.
Nestes, pode causar paralisia dos membros posteriores que leva ao sacrifício precoce dos animais.
Repassem!!! Vamos divulgar!!!!!


José Geraldo de Lima

"Comece fazendo o que é necessário, depois o que é possívelE de repente você estará fazendo o impossível." 
São Francisco de Assis

"Transportai todos os dias um punhado de terra e, um dia, tereis uma montanha".

Via NPR: The Poor Lack Personal Responsibility? That's Rich

I've been thinking, lately, in light of the dim economic news, about the way we view the truly poor.

The first person who comes to mind is my grandmother. I can see her at her kitchen sink, re-using the wax paper, running to turn out a light, skinning squirrels, deer and rabbits her husband shot.

Mabel was poor by any means you measure — alcoholic father, fourth-grade education, no job. She owned nothing until her second widowhood, when she got a small house at age 70.

Americans look at the poor — when we look — from atop a mountain of data. The U.S. Census Bureau has the numbers. One in six Americans is being served by at least one program related to poverty. More than 43 million people live in poverty. One in seven receives food stamps.

We claim that we believe in compassionate conservatism, but we are not compassionate about the poor, says Sheldon Danziger, a public policy professor at the University of Michigan. We regard being poor in a singular, American way: failures in the accounting department of personal responsibility.

America is a place where people want to believe they rise through their own efforts; an American who loses a job is not a day away from starvation. The truth is, that's because of those government programs. It's a lot better to be laid off in 2011 than in 1939.

But personal responsibility can't cover every moment of chance that besets human life. It can't alone make you rich or save you from a layoff.

My grandmother kept strict accounts, which I have right here, in a red-and-black notebook called, "Cash." Income $225.80 — monthly Social Security — $35 more from the Veterans Administration. She rented out her spare room.

I regret to say that sometimes, my grandmothers's old clothes and peasant ways embarrased me. I'm not alone. We don't want the poor to congregate in our parks or spoil public places—too often, we don't even want to see them. Across the country, laws to criminalize poverty and contain the homeless have risen in dozens of cities.

Perhaps our perceptions will necessarily change. I'm glad my grandmother survived on squirrel—but I don't want anyone else to have to.

make the jump here to listen to the article

Friday, August 19, 2011

"Under Pres. Bachmann You Will See Gasoline Come Down Below $2 A Gallon"

Via JMG: The View From Space

(Via - Boing Boing)

reposted from Joe

Via Utne:

Forests Getting Tangled Up in Vines

Vines are on the march across North, South, and Central America, and they are causing a structural change in the physical makeup of forests.


Via Lester and Charlie:

Wall Photos

‎47 years ago this week, President Johnson signed a $1b anti-poverty bill. "Freedom," he said, "is not enough."

Thursday, August 18, 2011

Right-Wing Media Distort Study To Blame Obama For Poverty

Fox Nation, The Drudge Report, and Rush Limbaugh all mischaracterized a new study showing an increase in child poverty, blaming President Obama for the increase, despite the fact that George W. Bush was president during almost the entire period covered by the study. Limbaugh went on to falsely claim that food stamps are ineffective.

make the jump here to read the full article

Via the Dialy mail: Tasting the rainbow: The ants whose multi-coloured abdomens show exactly what they've been eating

Read more:

Via JMG: Financial Illiteracy

Sullivan links today to this bit of insanity:
In a recent consumer study, 21 percent of individuals surveyed – including 38 percent of those with income below $25,000 – reported that winning the lottery was “the most practical strategy for accumulating several hundred thousand dollars” of wealth for their own retirement. In addition, 16 percent thought that winning the lottery was the best retirement strategy for all Americans, not just themselves.
My mother likes to say that the lottery is for people that don't understand math.

reposted from Joe

ThinkProgress has assembled the top ten hits from Perry’s tenure as governor:

(1) PERRY ALLOWED THE EXECUTION OF A LIKELY INNOCENT MAN, THEN IMPEDED AN INVESTIGATION INTO THE MATTER: In 2004, Cameron Todd Willingham was executed in Huntsville, Texas after being convicted of arson and the murder of his three children. Even after significant evidence emerged showing that arson had not caused the fire (thus exonerating Willingham), Perry refused to grant a stay of execution. Five years after Willingham was executed, a report from a Texas Forensic Science Commission investigator found that the fire could not have been arson. As the commission prepared to hear testimony from the investigator in October 2009, Perry quickly fired and replaced three of its members, forcing an indefinite delay in the hearing.

(2) PERRY WANTS TO REPEAL THE 16th AND 17th AMENDMENTS, ENDING DIRECT ELECTION OF U.S. SENATORS AND THE FEDERAL INCOME TAX: In his 2010 book Fed Up!, Perry called the 16th and 17th Amendments “mistaken” and said they resulted from “a fit of populist rage.” The 16th Amendment allows the federal government to collect income taxes, which is the single biggest source of revenue, accounting for 45 percent of all receipts. The 17th Amendment took electing U.S. senators out of the hands of political insiders and allowed the American public to decide their representation instead. If Perry had his way, the federal government would be stripped of its current ability to fund highway construction projects, food inspectors, and the military, and the American public would not even be permitted to elect their own senators.

(3) PERRY PROPOSED LETTING STATES DROP OUT OF SOCIAL SECURITY AND MEDICAID: Despite the programs’ importance and popularity, Perry has argued that states like Texas should be allowed to opt out of Social Security and Medicaid. Were Perry to have his way on Social Security, “the entire system would collapse under the weight of too many Social Security beneficiaries who had not paid into the system,” notes Ian Millhiser. On Medicaid, in addition to stripping 3.6 million low-income Texans of their health care, Perry’s proposal would actually hurt, not help, the state’s budget deficit. This is because, as Igor Volsky writes, opting out of Medicaid would take “billions out of the state economy that goes on to support hospitals and other providers,” while forcing hospitals “to swallow the costs of caring for uninsured individuals who will continue to use the emergency room as their primary source of care.”

(4) TEXAS IS THE COUNTRY’S BIGGEST POLLUTER, BUT PERRY SUED THE FEDERAL GOVERNMENT FOR DISAPPROVING OF THE STATE’S AIR QUALITY STANDARDS: Texas is the biggest polluter in the country, leading the nation in carbon dioxide emissions. However, when the EPA published its “disapproval” of the state’s air quality standards for falling short of the Clean Air Act’s requirements, Perry sued the federal government to challenge the ruling. Perry’s environmental record doesn’t end there. He is a global warming denier who called the 2010 BP oil spill an “act of God” while speaking at a trade association funded by BP.

(5) PERRY DESIGNATED AS “EMERGENCY LEGISLATION” A BILL REQUIRING ALL WOMEN SEEKING ABORTIONS TO HAVE SONOGRAMS FIRST: In January, Perry proposed requiring all women seeking abortions to have a sonogram at least 24 hours before the procedure. Under the bill, doctors would be required to “tell a woman the size of her fetus’ limbs and organs, even if she does not want to know.” Before a woman is permitted to have an abortion, physicians are also forced to provide an image of the fetus and make the woman listen to the sound of its heartbeat. Perry designated his proposal as “emergency legislation,” allowing the bill to be rushed through the legislature. He signed it into law last month.

(6) PERRY GUTTED CHILDCARE SERVICES EVEN AS TEXAS CHILDHOOD POVERTY HIT 25 PERCENT: Facing a $27 billion budget deficit this year, Perry decided to gut child support services, despite a report from the Center for Public Policy Priorities that found nearly one in four Texas children lived beneath the poverty line. Instead of raising revenue like California, a state facing a similarly sized deficit, Perry scaled back more than $10 billion of child support over two years. As Think Progress’ Pat Garofalo noted, these cuts were proposed despite Texas’ possession of a $8.2 billion rainy day fund.

(7) PERRY WAS A STRONG SUPPORTER OF TEXAS’S ANTI-SODOMY LAWS: Perry was a strong proponent of Texas’s anti-sodomy law that was struck down in 2003 by the Supreme Court in Lawrence v. Texas. Calling the law “appropriate,” Perry dismissed the Court decision as the result of “nine oligarchs in robes.” Even after being struck down, Perry supported the Texas legislature’s refusal to remove the law from its books.

(8) PERRY IS A STIMULUS HYPOCRITE WHO LOUDLY CRITICIZED FEDERAL RECOVERY MONEY BUT USED IT TO BALANCE HIS STATE’S BUDGET: As the nation struggled to avoid economic collapse in 2009, Perry was a vocal critic of Congress’s recovery package, even advocating that Texas reject the money because “we can take care of ourselves.” Months later, after Perry was able to balance the state’s budget only with the aid of billions in federal stimulus dollars, Perry again repeated that he would reject federal funding, arguing that the government “spends money they don’t have.” Five months later, Perry again took advantage of federal funding to issue $2 billion in bonds for highway improvements in Texas. Even so, the state faces a $27 billion budget deficit.

(9) PERRY SAID THAT TEXAS MIGHT HAVE TO SECEDE FROM THE UNITED STATES: One hundred and fifty years ago, Texas and other southern states seceded from the Union, resulting in a bloody Civil War. 148 years later, Perry floated the idea that Texas may again have to secede because of a federal government that “continues to thumb their nose at the American people.” Perry was roundly criticized for his proposal, yet he repeated his threat the next month on Fox News, telling host Neil Cavuto, “If Washington continues to force these programs on the states, if Washington continues to disregard the tenth amendment, who knows what happens.”

(10) DESPITE HAVING THE WORST UNINSURED RATE IN THE COUNTRY, PERRY CLAIMS THAT TEXAS HAS “THE BEST HEALTH CARE IN THE COUNTRY” : On Bill Bennett’s radio show last year, Perry claimed that “Texas has the best health care in the country.” In reality, Texas has the highest rate of uninsured residents of any state. More than one in four Texans lack coverage; the national average is just 15.4 percent. As such, there are more uninsured residents in Texas than there are people in 33 states. Despite Texas’s low coverage rates, the state has some of the most restrictive Medicaid eligibility thresholds, and Perry has even proposed dropping out of the program. Texas also has an inordinately high percentage of impoverished children, yet Perry opposed expanding the successful State Children’s Health Insurance Program (SCHIP).
ThinkProgress intern Sean Savett contributed to this report.

Presidential candidate Rick Perry denies global warming

Via JMG: Sounds Like Jesus

reposted from Joe

Via JMG: GOP Sen. Tom Coburn: The Cowards In The Senate Are Just Lucky I Can't Carry A Gun

GOP Sen. Tom Coburn says he's so disgusted with his colleagues, that "It's a good thing I can't pack a gun on the Senate floor." Coburn continued his diatribe by declaring that the health care system was better back when patients paid their doctors in chickens.
“You can’t tell me the system is better now than it was before Medicare,” he said. He told a group at the Integris Mayes County Medical Center in Pryor, Okla.: “Show me where in the Constitution the federal government is responsible for your health care?” Without specifying what he meant, Coburn said President Barack Obama has an “intent is to create dependency because it worked so well for him.” The World’s caption below a photo of Coburn reads the understated: “Disagrees with Obama’s politics.” “As an African-American male,” Coburn said, Obama received “tremendous advantage from a lot of these programs.” The programs were not identified in the World report.
Double bonus GOP points for the racism in the last sentence!

reposted from Joe

Via JMG: Another Time Tunnel Trip With Crazy Eyes

"What people recognize is that there's a fear that the United States is in an unstoppable decline. They see the rise of China, the rise of India, the rise of the Soviet Union and our loss militarily going forward. And especially with this very bad debt ceiling bill, what we have done is given a favor to President Obama and the first thing he'll whack is five hundred billion out of the military defense at a time when we're fighting three wars. People recognize that." - Michele Bachmann.

reposted from Joe

Via Climate Progress: Bachmann Says She Can Get Gas Prices Below $2 a Gallon. Is She Planning Another Deep Recession?


In July, Republican presidential candidate Michele Bachmann failed economics 101 by claiming at a campaign rally in South Carolina: “A dollar in 2011 should be the same as a dollar in 1911. A dollar should be worth a dollar.”

Bachmann is still skipping classes.  At another rally in South Carolina, the Minnesota Congresswoman appeared oblivious to the laws of global supply and demand by claiming she will get gasoline below $2 a gallon, presumably by opening up the U.S. to more oil drilling.
“The day that the president became president gasoline was $1.79 a gallon. Look at what it is today. Under President Bachmann, you will see gasoline come down below $2 a gallon again. That will happen.”
Watch it:

I’ve heard this one before — during my fifth grade student council election: “If I’m elected, I promise to get the lunch lady to serve more french fries with every meal in the cafeteria.”

Her “Drill, Baby, Drill,” strategy can’t lower prices more than a few pennies in 2030, as discussed below.  But, there is another way, as Tom Kloza, chief oil analyst at the Oil Price Information Service, explained to the Chicago Tribune:
“We’re going to have to recognize the rest of the world has this increasing appetite for oil,“ he said. “If we go below $2 a gallon, it probably means there has been a lot of wealth loss and we are in a deflationary period.“
A lot of wealth loss and deflation –  that pretty much sums up what a Bachmann presidency would mean.  Here’s why.

The average price of gasoline is $3.60 cents today. Of course, getting gasoline below $2 is theoretically not impossible. But as Bachmann pointed out, the last time we saw those prices was in 2008, during one of the most severe global economic crises in history.  Actually, at that time, Bachmann actually tried to take credit for lowering gas prices, explaining that the “drill baby drill” approach was the reason. She failed to note that the deep recession had caused an historic drop in gasoline demand:

Bachmann loves to quote that $1.83 figure. She used it in March when she falsely claimed that the Obama Administration had only issued one permit for new oil drilling. In fact, the Obama Administration has issued dozens of new permits for shallow and deep-water drilling. PolitiFact rightly gave her a “Pants on Fire” lie rating for that claim.

As the below figures from the Energy Information Administration show, domestic oil production has increased substantially since Obama took office. But since the global economy picked back up and developing countries like China and Brazil are demanding more and more oil, global prices have been on the rise. Again, those pesky laws of supply and demand.

Unless Bachmann would like to bring us back into a recession, the idea that we can drop gasoline prices below $2 a gallon simply through more drilling just doesn’t hold weight. The EIA issued an analysis in 2009 that compared opening the entire Outer Continental Shelf to drilling with a more restricted approach. It found that by 2030, gasoline would only be 3 cents cheaper under an open-drilling scenario.

Peter Fox-Penner, an energy economist with the Brattle Group, explains to Climate Progress that the exact opposite policies would have more of an impact on prices:
Bachmann’s claim is highly unrealistic. To reduce demand, the most important policy is stronger car and truck fuel efficiency standards — precisely what the Obama Administration has been doing. Her options for increasing gasoline or gas substitute supplies either require her to convince OPEC and other others to do what they’ve never been willing to do, or to adopt government policies that expand gasoline substitutes — again Obama policies. The one thing all oil experts would agree on is that no President could reduce prices to these levels simply by attempting to increase U.S. oil production.
Never mind what the experts agree on. This is the Bachmann School of Economics — where a dollar in 2011 should be worth the same as in 1911, and the laws of global supply and demand don’t apply.

Via Climate Progress: U.S. Has Already Tied Yearly Record for Billion-Dollar Weather Disasters — “So Long, ’500-Year Flood’ ”

NOAA’s National Climatic Data Center has updated its analysis of billion-dollar weather disasters in the U.S. (here).  As Reuters reports:
The United States has already tied its yearly record for billion-dollar weather disasters and the cumulative tab from floods, tornadoes and heat waves has hit $35 billion, the National Weather Service said on Wednesday.

And it’s only August, with the bulk of the hurricane season still ahead.
“I don’t think it takes a wizard to predict 2011 is likely to go down as one of the more extreme years for weather in history,” National Weather Service Director Jack Hayes told journalists on a conference call.
The number of billion dollar disasters in any year, by itself, isn’t a scientific measure of climate change, since many factors influence the cost of weather disaster.  On the other hand, the scientific literature has been clear for a while that human emissions are making the weather more extreme, as predicted by climate scientists (see “Two seminal Nature papers join growing body of evidence that human emissions fuel extreme weather, flooding that harm humans and the environment“).

And last year, Munich Re, one of the world’s leading reinsurers, issued a news release in late September, “large number of weather extremes as strong indication of climate change,” which concluced:

Munich Re’s natural catastrophe database, the most comprehensive of its kind in the world, shows a marked increase in the number of weather-related events. For instance, globally there has been a more than threefold increase in loss-related floods since 1980 and more than double the number of windstorm natural catastrophes, with particularly heavy losses as a result of Atlantic hurricanes.

The rise in natural catastrophe losses is primarily due to socio-economic factors. In many countries, populations are rising, and more and more people moving into exposed areas. At the same time, greater prosperity is leading to higher property values. Nevertheless, it would seem that the only plausible explanation for the rise in weather-related catastrophes is climate change. The view that weather extremes are more frequent and intense due to global warming coincides with the current state of scientific knowledge as set out in the Fourth IPCC Assessment Report.
A related story by the Omaha World Herald, “So long, ’500-year flood’?” explains:
As the Missouri River flood of 2011 unfolded, federal officials said the slow-motion disaster was caused by a once-in-500-year combination of rain and snow.

While some found comfort in that number, many who live along the river have seen too many big floods in too few years to trust that statistic.
They are on to something.

World-Herald interviews with experts show the bases of such terms as “500-year flood” are constantly evolving and increasingly questioned….

“As humans we are too tied to preparing for what we have observed or witnessed before. This year may not be as bad as it gets,” said Mark Anderson, director of the USGS South Dakota Water Science Center. “Much larger floods are possible, especially if we look beyond the historical record.”

… Like the USGS, the National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration is noticing changes in the watershed that feeds the Missouri.

Anderson said a changing climate only compounds the shortcomings of using existing data to estimate the frequency of floods.

“If the climate is shifting, all those earlier records may not be as relevant today,” he said. “The point is, the future isn’t always a reflection of the past.”
How about “since”?
We ain’t seen nothing yet.
Related Post:

Diversos fotos // Misc fotos Ouro Preto

Copyright 2011 by Daniel C. Orey All rights reserved. No part of this website may be reproduced or utilized in any form or by any means, electronic or mechanical, including photocopying, recording, or by any information storage and retrieval system, without permission in writing from the author.

Wednesday, August 17, 2011

Google Today // Google Hoje

Via Think Progress: The truth about job creation in Texas. Please LIKE and SHARE to spread the word.

Data for this post was compiled by Matt Separa, Research Assistant with the Economic Policy Team at the Center for American Progress Action Fund. Gov. Rick Perry (R-TX), since he launched his presidential campaign on Saturday, has paraded around the stat that “since June of 2009, Texas is responsible...

Via JMG: Google's Biggest Acquistions

Google has gobbled up more than 100 companies since its founding, but almost half of those acquisitions have taken place in the last year or so.

reposted from Joe


Home prices in Sacramento have dropped so much that more and more people can't resist the bargains. - Read More

Tuesday, August 16, 2011

7ª Olimpíada Brasileira de Matemática das Escolas Públicas - OBMEP 2011

O Buda de pedra sabão // The Buddha from Soap Stone

Asked a guy in the feira de pedra sabão to make me a Buddha from a bronze one I have from Nepal... it turned out grand...
Copyright 2011 by Daniel C. Orey All rights reserved. No part of this website may be reproduced or utilized in any form or by any means, electronic or mechanical, including photocopying, recording, or by any information storage and retrieval system, without permission in writing from the author.