Saturday, June 15, 2013

SAR #13166

Instead of doing the simple, obvious thing... we turn to politics.

Amen: The idea that climate change will be sufficiently undeniable and sufficiently harsh to ever spur the public to demand effective action by the world's governments is implausible. Climate change will continue with little effective effort made to mitigate its impact, what small effort we make will come from an absolute necessity to adapt in the face of geophysic and/or economic catastrophe. And when such a calamitous situation arises, it will be too late. Nothing we can do now can prevent the climate disasters of the next 50 years – they are already “baked in”. And as those 50 years draw to a close, 7+ billion humans will still be burning whatever they can to provide for their short-term needs. To expect otherwise is to ignore the essence of human existence. Pray for us sinners, now and at the hour of our death.

Priorities: I'd trust those who say we can't afford Social Security if they also said we can't afford the Defense budget. The problems are not economic, they are political. We have the communal will to kill, but not to heal and nurture. And we ought to think about that before we go blundering off to another Great Adventure in the Middle East.

Food Fight: The Senate's version of the Farm Bill would trim $4 billion from the food stamp program over the next decade, and the Republican House is calling for a $20 billion cut. No one is arguing that the people who will get cut don't need to eat, but the claim is we cannot afford to feed them. Imagine, the richest nation the world has ever seen cannot afford to feed its unemployed, its homeless, its citizens. But in 2011 the top 1 percent of Americans had a combined income of about $1.4 trillion, not counting capital gains. Let's count the capital gains and then let's raise their tax rate by 1/7th of 1%. That alone would cover the food stamps and leave lots left over to create a few jobs.

What If.... The recovery has progressed to the point we have only 3 unemployed workers for every job opening... If there are masses of unemployed workers and lots of slack in the economy, wouldn't giving the unmonied some money drive up demand and create a few jobs without any increase in inflation?

Bad And Badder: An epidemic of coffee-rust disease in Central America threatens the incomes of hundreds of thousands of farmers and workers and the morning Java of millions of coffee addicts in the developed world with crop losses approaching 50%. And we call it 'java' because an outbreak of a similar rust in 19th century Sri Lanka lead to the planting new coffee plantations in Indonesia. On the Island of Java.

Payday Loans: The interest rate on student loans is set to double on July 1st, to 6.8%. The government is charging banks 0.75% for funds (the discount rate). The banks ruined the economy, the students may just save it. Do the banks really need to double their profits on the close to $1 trillion in student loans? What's wrong with this picture?

Status Quo: The world's nations have repeatedly agreed we must cut our CO2 emissions enough to limit global warming to 2ºC or less by 2100. They have also tacitly agreed to pretend they were cutting their emissions, and not to notice that we are happily on our way to at least 4º of warming... and that well before 2100.

Well, Sure... “There is no clear evidence that the growth in the scale and complexity of the financial system in the rich developed world over the last 20 to 30 years has driven increased growth or stability... The financial sector’s gains have been more in the form of economic rents — basically something for nothing — than the return to greater economic value."

Porn O'Graph: Pull up a chair...

The Parting Shot:


Venus Looking Glass, Triodanis perfoliata


mistah charley, ph.d. said...
This comment has been removed by the author.
mistah charley, ph.d. said...

Since you quote the Ave Maria, allow me to post my slightly edited (to be non-theistic) version of the Prayer of St. Francis (as Wikipedia makes clear, it was named in honor of him, not written by him):

My goal is to be an instrument of peace,
Where there is hatred, let me sow love;
Where there is injury, pardon;
Where there is doubt, faith;
Where there is despair, hope;
Where there is darkness, light;
Where there is sadness, joy.

I seek not so much to be consoled, as to console;
to be understood, as to understand;
to be loved, as to love.

For it is in giving that we receive.
It is in pardoning that we are pardoned,
and it is in letting go of a smaller self that we are able to recognize our wider identity.

Charles Kingsley Michaelson, III said...

As we say in my non-theistic UU fellowship, Amen. And Amen.

Classof65 said...

You and I will not be alive to see the results of climate change... or the long-range results of our current political government administration (executive and legislative).

HS said...

Amen- "Nothing we can do now can prevent the climate disasters of the next 50 years – they are already “baked in”. And as those 50 years draw to a close, 7+ billion humans will still be burning whatever they can to provide for their short-term needs. "

We're already seeing concrete evidence that climate change is happening and that it's only getting worse. Also, conventionally produced oil likely peaked during the last decade and fracking is flash in the pan hype designed to juice Wall Street. A significant increase in resource scarcity is nearly certain in the near future, with all of its implications.

If you were uberwealthy and privy to the real data and assessments, as opposed to the made for teevee versions, what would you do? Precisely the kind of thing that we've seen for the last 20 years. You'd use every avenue available to you, to transfer resources to yourself and your kind, in an attempt to weather the storm. And what outcome would you desire most? Obviously, your survival and that of your kind, but also the necessary demise of most of the 7+ billion. Looking back at how the US was corrupted and the resulting flagrant wealth transfers that occured over the last 2 decades, it fits the bill perfectly.

TulsaTime said...

Climate Change- We have seen our first loss to climate change and that was New Orleans. The battles of any named tropical storm that comes up the east coast suck billions from every level of gov't and society. The grass and forest fires every season are not free either. Peak People anyone????