Monthly Archives: February 2012

Understanding the American debt

This will help understand the US debt in $:

U.S. Tax revenue:             2,170,000,000,000
Fed  budget:                     3,820,000,000,000
New  debt:                        1,650,000,000,000
National  debt:                14,271,000,000,000
Recent budget cut:                 38,500,000,000

Let’s remove 8 zeros and pretend it’s a household budget.

Annual family income:                               21,700
Money the family spent:                            38,200
New debt on the credit card:                      16,500
Outstanding balance on the credit card:    142,710
Total budget cuts:                                          385

Now we can understand why out $ is high, as is gold and silver, because the US $ is being consistently undervalued by its own actions!

Climate change to shake the earth

A changing climate isn’t just about floods, droughts and heatwaves. It brings erupting volcanoes and catastrophic earthquakes – Bill McGuire.

The idea that a changing climate can persuade the ground to shake, volcanoes to rumble and tsunamis to crash on to unsuspecting coastlines seems, at first, to be bordering on the insane. How can what happens in the thin envelope of gas that shrouds and protects our world possibly influence the potentially earth-shattering processes that operate deep beneath the surface? The fact that it does reflects a failure of our imagination and a limited understanding of the manner in which the different physical components of our planet – the atmosphere, the oceans, and the solid earth, or geosphere – intertwine and interact.

If we think about climate change at all, most of us do so in a very simplistic way: so, the weather might get a bit warmer; floods and droughts may become more of a problem and sea levels will slowly creep upwards. Evidence reveals, however, that our planet is an almost unimaginably complicated beast, which reacts to a dramatically changing climate in all manner of different ways; a few – like the aforementioned – straightforward and predictable; some surprising and others downright implausible. Into the latter category fall the manifold responses of the geosphere.

Read more:

Civilisation faces Perfect Storm

Celebrated scientists and development thinkers today warn that civilisation is faced with a perfect storm of ecological and social problems driven by overpopulation, overconsumption and environmentally malign technologies.

In the face of an absolutely unprecedented emergency society has no choice but to take dramatic action to avert a collapse of civilisation. Either we will change our ways and build an entirely new kind of global society, or they will be changed for us.

The stark assessment of the current global outlook by the group, who include Sir Bob Watson, the government’s chief scientific adviser on environmental issues, US climate scientist James Hansen, Prof José Goldemberg, Brazil’s secretary of environment during the Rio Earth summit in 1992, and Stanford University Prof Paul Ehrlich, is published today on the 40th anniversary of the foundation of the UN environment programme.

“The rapidly deteriorating biophysical situation is more than bad enough, but it is barely recognised by a global society infected by the irrational belief that physical economies can grow forever and disregarding the facts that the rich in developed and developing countries get richer and the poor are left behind.

“The perpetual growth myth … promotes the impossible idea that indiscriminate economic growth is the cure for all the world’s problems, while it is actually the disease that is at the root cause of our unsustainable global practices”.

Read The Guardian report here.

Trends and tipping points – Andrew Glikson

This is science at its best, illustrated, and a powerful read for understanding the predicament we have created. Mass extinctions in the history of Earth occurred when the atmosphere-ocean-land carbon and oxygen cycles, on which the biosphere depends, have been perturbed at rates to which species could not adapt. Rising atmospheric greenhouse gas levels above 330 ppm CO2 at rates of ~2 ppm/year and mean temperature rise of ~0.016oC/year since 1975-1976 are driving the fastest climate change trend recorded since about 34 million years ago, representing a critical climate threshold leading into uncharted territory and threatening the biosphere and human civilization. It is suggested the arrest of carbon emissions may not be sufficient to halt the current trend, except if accompanied with global efforts at down-draw of atmospheric CO2 using a range of bio-sequestration, organic and chemical methods.

Read the entire report here.

Heartland undermines the truth

Shocking, fascinating, entirely unsurprising: the leaked documents, if authentic, confirm what we suspected but could not prove. The Heartland Institute, which has helped lead the war against climate science in the United States, is funded among others by tobacco firms, fossil fuel companies and one of the billionaire Koch brothers.

The leaked documents appear to show that, courtesy of its multi-millionaire donors, the institute has commissioned a global warming curriculum for schools, which teaches that “whether humans are changing the climate is a major scientific controversy” and “whether CO2 is a pollutant is controversial.”

Click here for the rest of this important exposure by George Monbiot.

France and Bulgaria ban gas fracking

Gas fracking has been banned by the French and Bulgarian parliaments by huge majorities.In spite of the profits to farmers this is looking to the long-term viability of agriculture. We all depend on food. There is no excuse for putting the most important resource in the world at risk.

We should be doing the same. Read the reports on France and Bulgaria.

Catastrophic flood could sink Sydney suburbs

The Hawkesbury Nepean Valley in Sydney’s outer suburbs has a history of massive floods, and while there has not been a big one for more than a century, plans are in place for such an event.

The suburbs of Penrith and Emu Plains straddle the high banks of the Nepean River in what is a typical picture of Australian suburbia – lots of brick houses, probably built around the 1960s and ’70s. But up to 70,000 people would have to be evacuated if a major flood was to hit the area.

The suburbs sit in a flood plain, and if a flood like the one which hit in 1867 was to occur, the whole area could go under. 

Read more.

Extreme weather now normal weather

We are warned that heating Gaia will produce extreme weather, catastrophic even. These will be contradictory. Russia was suffering temperatures of -30C while the immediately adjoining Arctic was losing its ice for the first time. There are repeated floods in Asia and Australia, sustained freezing in Eastern Europe, and blizzards in the Balkans and ice on the Danube.

People have been snap-frozen in the streets, left like those woolly mammoths in the Siberian tundra. With polar ice loss quickening seas will rise more quickly.

At home we have lost most of our fruit from an endless cloud cover for the past two months, though the rainfall has been half the average.

The latest scientific reports show that this will continue, and get worse – meaning we should now be calling the situation Catastrophic rather than Extreme.

US Secret Armies and Global War

Those prepared to extol the exploits of elite killing squads abroad as the essence of the “American idea” will not shrink from the use of similar methods in suppressing any challenge to the rule of the financial elite at home. The deepest global economic crisis since the Great Depression of the 1930s once again confronts mankind with the threat of world war and dictatorship.

Granting of extra bases to US Special Forces in Australia is part of this operation.

Read the rest of this here.

Teetering on a tipping point: dangerous climate change in the Arctic

We are seeing the first signs of dangerous climate change in the Arctic. This is our warning that humanity is facing a dire future. [From Carlos Duarte, http://theconversation.edu.au]

The Arctic region is fast approaching a series of “tipping points” that could trigger an abrupt domino effect of large-scale climate change across the entire planet. The region contains arguably the greatest concentration of potential tipping elements.

If set in motion, these can generate profound alterations which will place the Arctic not at the periphery, but at the core of the Earth system. There is evidence that these chain reactions have begun. This has major consequences not just for “nature”, but for the future of humankind as the changes progress.

Research shows that the Arctic is now warming at three times the global average.

For the whole report click here