GLOBAL WARMING VIII: THE GOOD NEWS At least they …

GLOBAL WARMING VIII: THE GOOD NEWS

At least they don’t expect an Upper North Atlantic “Little Ice Age” this century…though they withhold judgment about farther in the future. Though from what I understand from other sources, our hard data about the current state of the Gulf Stream, or of its changing, is woefully inadequate…so no guarantees. They really need tons more research, including buoy measuring devices throughout the North Atlantic and at various levels of depth under the surface. IOW, lots of money.

GET OUT OF IRAQ! Like most of us, I was deceived …

GET OUT OF IRAQ!

Like most of us, I was deceived by Bush/Cheney/Powell regarding the WMD threat to the United States posed by Hussein’s Iraq. Though never about any alleged link to 9/11. (Talk about “lying to the American people,” one of the proposed articles of impeachment against Nixon – and that was just about a third-rate domestic political break-in, not a war of aggression…even one placing us in peril of a nuclear war with Iran!!!) But for a long time I didn’t see that we could morally leave Iraq in a mess that we’d made. I have now recently come around to the position that we should get out of there by the end of this year. For me it’s been a combination of the growth of the anti-war movement…the Iraqi opinion polls…evidence suggesting the “civil war” has been manufactured by Washington…the total lack of a plan to deal with it even if it were genuine…the growing sense that to do so would require a HUGE increase in hardware and manpower and even the Draft…and that the right thing to do about a war that shouldn’t have happened is to end it.

“Support the troops”? Wait a minute, who comes first, the body politic, or “the troops”? This isn’t a dictatorship (officially) yet. In America the military serves the national interest, not the other way around. Bring them the hell home!

SUMMER FOOTBALL IN ALASKA? With Global Warming, w…

SUMMER FOOTBALL IN ALASKA?

With Global Warming, we can certainly expect an increase in heat-related deaths and injuries among National Football League players during summer training camp. So how about if they all move training camp, and even the pre-season (all ending before Labor Day), to Alaska? Think of it like baseball Spring Training in Florida and Arizona (now getting under way!). Although preseason games would have to be played ridiculously early in the day, since most of the 49th State is 4 hours behind the East Coast….

The Canadian Football League actually is well under way during the summer, and it’s not that much cooler in most of Canada than in most of the U.S. They may have trouble….

ROUNDUP So the United States Senate, arguably the…

ROUNDUP

So the United States Senate, arguably the premier debating chamber in the world (after Tony Blair kicked most of the Hereditary Peers out of the UK House of Lords), can’t debate anything unless 60 Senators agree to? This isn’t democracy, this is partisan gridlock. This is another instance of house rules prevailing over the Constitution, which prescribes only a few instances of supermajorities. This and Joe Lieberman’s threatening to switch parties once again suggest re-looking at supposedly-close election results from ’06, ’04, and ’02!

And a federal appeals court says Gitmo POWs need to go to Cuban courts? Well, maybe they’ll finally get some justice! As if the U.S. will ever obey a Cuban court order!!! Actually, the “neocon” who recently said the Constitution doesn’t bestow the right of Habeas Corpus spoke correctly, but for the wrong reason. Neither the Constitution nor the Bill of Rights “bestows” rights: GOD DOES. (Remember “endowed by their Creator”?!) The Constitution and the B of R merely recognize them, entrench them in the Constitution (to borrow Canadian terminology), requiring a Constitutional Amendment to abolish or modify them (as opposed to a simple legislative Act like in the UK). (The Constitution only allows habeas to be suspended temporarily “in cases of invasion or insurrection when the public safety may require it.” This says to me it can only be suspended on U.S. territory experiencing an invasion or insurrection, because it’d hamper putting down the invasion or insurrection – imperiling the physical safety of residents of said State or territory – for a time to accomodate prisoners’ needs for court hearings. Or maybe the U.S. forces can’t provide the safety required for a court’s functions for a time during such a disturbance. Certainly not for a protracted period of time, nor concerning prisoners from an overseas conflict not touching on U.S. territory.) Because all governments and their agents in the USA are limited, there must always be legal recourse against their overreaching, otherwise they aren’t really limited. Therefore any human being who finds himself in the custody of an American government or agent anywhere in the universe may file a writ of habeas corpus in any American court, to make sure his detention is in keeping with the limited powers of that government or agent. (Hence I believe the court erred in ruling against the German POWs after WW2.) And nowhere in the Constitution does it say the federal government may do anything it wants with non-American prisoners outside U.S. territory, disregarding the Constitution itself, domestic law, and what even in the 18th century they called “the law of nations.” Rights don’t belong to Americans, but to human beings (even if their own legal systems don’t recognize these all the time) – in Common Law terms, from time immemorial. The fact that a prisoner is alleged to be an “unlawful enemy combatant” doesn’t allow their jailer to be unlawful too. “Two wrongs don’t make a right” (no pun intended). If our alleged enemies reduce us to their own level of alleged illegality, they win.

Finally, Republican administrations habitually pick-and-choose which laws of the land they will “faithfully execute” – a “high crime” in my book! Usually they fail to execute environmental and business/workplace laws. Bush II does it, Bush I did it, probably Reagan and Nixon did it too. Therefore, Congress should set up an organ, maybe called the Congressional Legal Office, similar in structure to the General Accounting Office and the Congressional Budget Office. This CLO should institute an ongoing legal audit, to determine federal laws of the land which aren’t being executed by the Executive Branch – under any administration from here on out – or any independent federal agency. These could be statutes passed by Congress and signed by a President or overriding his veto, or federal court orders, agency regulations, treaties (HAHAHA!), previous administrations’ Executive Orders or directives still on the books, or even Constitutional or Common Law provisions. Three things this probably should not include are Justice Department failures to prosecute outside the Executive Branch, expenditures of federal funds without actual authorization of both Houses of Congress, and clearly-unconstitutional laws on the books: prosecutorial discretion and limited resources are legitimate traditional restrictions on prosecution and litigation (most can’t devote themselves to oral sex like Mr. Starr did), and challenging constitutionality of expenditures or laws is not likely to be countenanced by lawmakers always when necessary…though all three of these are ripe for further investigation and action under other rubrics. What the CLO should do, though, is when it finds an unexecuted law, notify House and Senate leaders, and the President or agency head, giving a set period of time to execute the law in question – perhaps as long as 18 months, since it may require separate appropriation of funds in the current or following fiscal year. The CLO’s enabling legislation should grant blanket, standing authorization to go to court to order the Executive Branch or agency involved to execute the law in question, if they fail to after notification. If the law is a court order or case law, I think the CLO should first see if any parties to the case are still around to consult with, but shouldn’t feel restricted if they don’t wish to return to court themselves, since in the end it’s THE PEOPLE’S interest that the Executive execute the laws of the land. In such a case, I guess the CLO would need to become an intervenor in the case, and move for a contempt-of-court finding against the Executive Branch or agency. Otherwise it’s a full-blown court case, just like private citizens and organizations – like environmental groups – have to do today to compel execution. (Though that sounds like something there should be a writ or simplified process for, stating the unexecuted law and presenting proof of failure to execute it…slam dunk!) After that, it’s contempt-of-court, with the normal punishments that can entail, including daily doubling of fines (hopefully against the official’s private, and not public, funds!!), and indeterminate imprisonment until the cause for contempt is removed – even of a President. Imagine that!!

WILLIAM DONOHUE HATES LIBERATED WOMEN The so-call…

WILLIAM DONOHUE HATES LIBERATED WOMEN

The so-called head of the so-called Catholic League for Religious and Civil Rights speaks for very few. He may claim 350,000 members, but there are at least 75 million Catholics in the United States; do the math. If it wasn’t for the internet and Faux News, he’d have nobody…except maybe his priest and his bishop.

BTW, the League is tax-exempt. Maybe the IRS or Congress (if the Bush IRS won’t) should look into them. ‘Cause he sure does alot of politicking for a tax-exempt, supposedly-religious organization! He promotes Republicans, degrades Democrats, Socialists, Jews, “liberals,” Gays, promotes unprotected sex – What does any of this have to do with “defending individual Catholics and the institutional Catholic Church”???

Of course, if you disagree with the Pope or Bill, you’re “an anti-Catholic”…even if you’re Catholic!!!

First he had to go after Mara Vanderslice, who I happen to know is very nice, a good person, religiously devout, helping candidates and nonprofits envision and work for the Common Good as still professed by some religious and political traditions in this country, meeting many religious communities’ needs in ways Repugs apparently don’t. I won’t link to his scummy words, but he had a problem with Mara having not been ‘religious’ all her young life…going to Earlham College (Trust me, Bill, it’s not run by the flaming liberal, pacifist kind of Quakers you’re thinking of, but rather these folks!!!)…having belonged to a “socialist” student group way back in college…having given a talk to an organization that did something Bill didn’t like when she was FOURTEEN!!!…for once or twice allegedly practicing civil disobedience in defense of the world’s poor and the environment (which we now know is burning to a cinder!). And as a result, Bill hobbled de jure President Kerry and Vice-President Edwards’ outreach to just the religious groups who are now so welcoming to Mara – groups Bill probably doesn’t approve of!

(The thing is, as Mara hints in her Earlham interview, because the so-called Religious Right has monopolized religious public language in this country since killing-off Rev. Martin Luther King and Bobby Kennedy, center-left candidates and groups who definitely have and hold religious and moral values which happen to align with some in the center-left whose values aren’t believed by them to be religious and moral – but are right there in the Bible and Holy Tradition and the Canons of the Church! – those candidates and groups literally don’t know how to talk about their faith and moral beliefs without risking sounding like they’re merely parrotting the RR to get “values voters” [the No. 2 lie that came out of the '04 election!]. Scandalously, the RR has succeeded in cutting-off at the knees any public religious faith in this country that isn’t theirs, i.e., conservative evangelical Protestantism or the Catholics, Jews, and Orthodox Christians they’ve deceived/seduced into bed with them. That’s one reason why I bring in religion here from time to time – without, I hope, beating readers up with it like they do!!! The fact is, most Catholics in the First World [at least] are happily left-of-center; in fact, for American Catholics, frequent church attendance generally correlates with “liberalism,” social tolerance, compassion, voting Democratic, etc., whereas for most U.S. Catholics, “conservatism” correlates with infrequent church attendance! One other thing here: I’d worry that this radical religious disempowerment by the RR of the rest of us might risk the personal faith of religious liberals – As much as they claim to care about your soul, you can go to hell if you disagree with them on anything, seems to be their perspective. Well, sure, look at all their 30,000 denominations, a new one every day! That’s productive!)

Anyway, now Donohue screams about a couple of women bloggers Edwards’ new presidential campaign hires to try to tap the internet’s potential – not because of anything they’ve said on Edwards’ behalf, but things they’ve written online long ago. Well, Billy-boy, guess what, we “liberals” have our loose cannons, too, just like you! BTAIM, often blogging isn’t so much the rough draft of history, as the brainstorm before the rough draft. But apparently, as we said when we were kids, you can dish it out but you can’t take it. Frankly, you should be ashamed about alot of the things you’ve said down through the years…pretty much every time you open your big fat mouth! The fact that you’re not poses questions about your claims to religiosity. (As for me, I am the worst of sinners.) Don’t you have anything more important to do than spy on uppity women and their pasts? You’d prefer ‘em barefoot and pregnant in the kitchen, wouldn’t you.

To coin a phrase, William Donohue, have you no sense of decency?

GLOBAL WARMING VII: THEY BURIED THE LEAD The full…

GLOBAL WARMING VII: THEY BURIED THE LEAD

The full report from those GW people from the beginning of the month won’t be available to us mortals for a few more months. But go here (PDF) (their “Summary for Policymakers” – think of it as ‘Global Warming for Dummies’!!) and scroll down to page 17, their ‘estimates of projected future climate change.’ This is where they explain why we’re in this for the very long haul – what I didn’t know is, it’s for A THOUSAND YEARS OR MORE!!!!:

“Both past and future anthropogenic carbon dioxide emissions will continue to contribute to warming and sea level rise for more than a millennium, due to the timescales required for removal of this gas from the atmosphere.”

The MSM I heard ‘only’ said “several centuries”!!! Call me Pollyanna, but I want to start counting from their watershed year of 1750, so we’re looking at AD 2750, or hopefully not many more centuries after that. (Just in time to get ourselves bombed back to the Stone Age – or worse – by an asteroid!) Anyway, at least what we might be able to do, someone said, is influence how much warming and sea rise: It can be bad, or it can be less bad. I vote for less bad!

“If radiative forcing were to be stabilized in 2100 at A1B levels, thermal expansion alone would lead to 0.3 to 0.8 m of sea level rise by 2300 (relative to 1980–1999). Thermal expansion would continue for many centuries, due to the time required to transport heat into the deep ocean.”

What that means is, 3 feet or more of sea rise in the next 200 years even if we halt temperature rise by the end of this century, and still more all the way till the 29th century or later because big, warmed fluids keep expanding, even if the icecaps stop melting and adding water to the oceans that way.

But we probably won’t be so lucky:

“The corresponding future temperatures in Greenland are comparable to those inferred for the last interglacial period 125,000 years ago, when paleoclimatic information suggests reductions of polar land ice extent and 4 to 6 m of sea level rise.”

For those of you keeping score at home, that’s >3 feet increase from thermal expansion of seawater, plus 18 feet from melting Greenland and other Arctic lands, and late word that we can expect some melt from Antarctica too. Here’s what the world will look like under 30 feet of water: Say goodbye to Derry City and coastal County Derry, Belfast, much of South Down, County Louth, Dublin, Wicklow City, Wexford, much of West Waterford and East Cork, Cork City, Tralee, Limerick City, Shannon, and much of Conamara, Ireland; Bristol, Portsmouth, the heart of London and the Thames Estuary, Canterbury, and much of east-central England; the heart of Glasgow and towns along the Firth of Forth in Scotland; much of Holland and Belgium and coastal Germany and NW France and Denmark, Stockholm, much of Kaliningrad and Gdansk, NE Italy, Cadiz, coastal Albania, Thessaloniki, the Nile Delta, the north Black Sea coast, the Marsh Arabs, the Persian Gulf coast, NW India/SE Pakistan, Mumbai, the Bay of Bengal coastline (including Bangladesh), Calcutta, Bangkok, southern areas of Vietnam and Cambodia, coastal areas of the East Indies, coastal Australia, Hong Kong, Macau, Guangzhou, coastal Taiwan and NE China, Honolulu, many of the world’s Islands(!), Bethel and the Yukon Delta in Alaska, much of Greater Vancouver and the Fraser Valley and Seattle, the Lower Columbia from Portland to the Pacific; Eureka, California; much of the Bay Area, Silicon Valley, and the Central Valley of California; Salinas, Oxnard, Los Angeles Harbor, Long Beach, Huntington Beach, the waterfront of San Diego, and the Imperial Valley, Calif.; the Gulf of Mexico coast, much of south Florida, most of the eastern coastline of the U.S. and Canada, The Bahamas, coastal Cuba and Haiti and the Dominican Republic, much of coastal Latin America, Buenos Aires, the Lower Amazon from Manaus to the Delta and the Atlantic; and coastal West Africa and Mozambique.

And these guys aren’t even factoring-in the release of gases from all that thawing permafrost!

DO YOU WANT TO OUTLAW ABORTION? OR SAVE UNBORN BA…

DO YOU WANT TO OUTLAW ABORTION? OR SAVE UNBORN BABIES!

Democrats for Life” are sponsoring their “95-10 Initiative,” a set of programs they say will reduce abortions by 95 percent in ten years.

Face it, there were abortions before Roe v. Wade, and there will be even if Roe is overturned or an outlawing Constitutional Amendment adopted – events not reasonably foreseen in the near- or middle-term future. “Conservatives” and “libertarians” accuse liberals of trying to outlaw everything with “government intervention,” but their own marriage to law-and-order vs. real prevention is unreasonable and potentially hypocritical – it risks sounding more like will-to-power than a sincere desire to save human beings. In fact, by giving insincere lip-service to anti-abortion, a generation of “conservative” politicians whose personal morals, business ethics, and inconsistency on “life” should make conservative anti-abortionists ashamed, and who have done less than they could have against abortion, have manipulated anti-abortion voters and organizations, and stolen their money.

Liberals against abortion – getting real about it!

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