Politixs of Envy
The Capuchin monkey experiment showing an individual content with cucumber until an associate receives grape, shows that a sense of justice is deeply embedded in social animals. Or at least that resentment at getting less than another crosses the species barrier. But that plays out in human affairs in ways that go beyond mere envy.
President Trump has finally managed to make good on one of his many campaign promises.
He has pulled out of the Paris agreement.
Muslims are still un-banned, Obamacare un-repealed and Mexicans un-walled.
But Trump can claim real progress in having repudiated the Paris agreement to join with all other Nations (except Syria and Nicaragua), in reducing future CO2 emissions by a self-selected voluntary amount.
While such a withdrawal involves very little change in actions, Trump can point to other steps taken to roll back clean air and water regulations and cut funding for renewable energy research in keeping his larger promise to reduce job-inhibiting regulation and government subsidy of environmental issues.
This one valid success in meeting his manifesto pledges has not been greeted with wide praise. In fact it seems to have increased the expressed commitment of all those within the Paris agreement. With wider signs that the importance of future CO2 emission reduction is gaining support.
Like many people I followed the US elections with great interest because of Trump. Checking the news everyday to see what outlandish nonsense he was spouting this time. Like many others the chances of him actually winning seemed small, even with a very unpopular opponent. Continue reading
After such a long absence from posting it is customary to return with a reason. A tale of events somehow proportional to the length of the gap. But a large part of it was indolence.
Certainly there were the real world logistics of summer holidays work and family to distract. But nothing exceptional.
There are two reasons for not posting anything new recently. Continue reading
Indulging in serendipitous news gathering via Youtube has its dangers as I have mentioned before. Whatever algorithm suggests new videos can lead from the merely obsessive to beyond the ridiculous.
This nightmare scenario is obviously the product of this, a concatenation of disparate reports Continue reading
Back on trend.
Well after a hiatus in posting, a pause even in blog posts, here are some views on the flotsam and jetsam encountered while wandering through the twilight zone, the outer limits of the Internet in a futile attempt to avoid the febrile nonsense of the EU referendum debate in the UK and the interminable circus of the Trump.
The Chair of the US House Committee on Science, Space, and Technology has demanded all communications between scientists and administrators in relation to the scientific paper on recent surface temperature rise.
Here is his reason why –
“It was inconvenient for this administration that climate data has clearly showed no warming for the past two decades. The American people have every right to be suspicious when NOAA alters data to get the politically correct results they want and then refuses to reveal how those decisions were made. NOAA needs to come clean about why they altered the data to get the results they needed to advance this administration’s extreme climate change agenda.”
He clearly thinks the scientific paper was fiction, a made-up version of reality to further a political end.
Here are the emails Rep Lamar Smith(R) is looking for… Continue reading
Having decided to avoid making posts that were purely reactive to the latest froth in the climate debate, or engage with topical politics to any degree, this post will break those resolutions.
I want to post more measured and generalised thoughts on political action, human ethics and climate, as well as other aspects of physics and biology that impact our future options, rather than knee-jerk derision of the latest conspiratorial inanities of the climate deniarati however amusing that may be. Anyway Hot Whopper does that so well, along with Eli, that any further attempt would be redundant.
After falling into a deep contemplation of the epistemological differences between the present and future, there is a post in the pipeline which will be about our perspectives on the near future and recent past. Complete with animated illustrative graphics…
However I find a reason to make a post in complete contradiction to this concern with temporal sensitivities to focus on the instant and ephemeral..
The reason is the wonderful scandal that has engulfed a UK peer of the realm. Continue reading
As the reality of the hottest year continues and the room for denial of
ongoing and potential future damaging impacts from AGW shrinks, programs of
policy appear that go beyond the mere economic tinkering of Carbon Tax or
Cap and Trade.
The Papal letter on caring for our world, the Ecomodernist manifesto both
exemplify the emergence of approaches to the problem of AGW that go beyond
attacking symptom or causes and propose more far-reaching changes in the way
future society must be ordered to solve the damage that present use of
fossil fuels have created, and avoid further impacts from continued
emissions. Continue reading
Those that follow the climate change issue may be aware of the low opinion that Matt Ridley is viewed with by people who accept the mainstream scientific position and the opprobrium with which his pronouncements on this matter are often greeted. His financial interests in fossil fuel, he owns a coal mine, do not help but his support of the contrarian view of AGW is also rooted in the political position that rejects the science because the policy choices it implies are an anathema to the hardline free market position he supports. This seems to be the basis for the GWPF advocacy. Some who find his denial, or at least his minimisation of the established climate science objectionable express puzzlement that someone who writes such good books on biology and genetics can be so wrong on this issue. Others who have a knowledge of the biology he presents in those works that goes beyond the popularist exposition he gives may already have a lower opinion of his work. Continue reading