All Power To The Roof!
May 15, 2013

 

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All the regulatory hurdles have been cleared, the power company is happy, and just a few minutes ago I finally turned on the solar panels on the roof.

My little bit to save the world.

Okay, I don’t believe that either. But at least I’m doing something and I can feel better about that as the biospheric Titanic breaks and sinks.

Yowsah!

By the way, the company is Sungevity, out in California. Very easy to work with. Tell ‘em Ric Gerace from Cape Cod sent you.

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Corona Virus, Chinese Flu Run Wild
May 13, 2013

750 Million Dead, No End In Sight

Scientists: “No cure yet”

New York, Chicago, L.A., World Capitols Shut Down

How about that?

It could happen.

A couple of microscopic, inanimate bits of protein could actually save the world from the plague of humanity that’s brought the biosphere to the abyss of destruction.

Considering that we came from some bits of amino acids, proteins, microstuff, way back when, we could be looking at the ultimate ironic justice. 

Yeah. We could. How about that?

Election 2012: A Choice? Not A Chance!
May 25, 2012

I read yesterday about Obama’s pushing for drilling in the Arctic, facilitating Shell’s lust to pollute up there.

What a choice for November! A corporate stooge in Obama, a pandering corporate acolyte in Romney.

Any chance we had to mitigate global warming or to protect the environment from our rape of it died with these two corporate pigs.

Bend over and kiss your biosphere goodbye, everyone.

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Pope Santorum? Bringing Back The Inquisition
February 20, 2012

The last thing this country needs is a wannabe Catholic Pope sitting in the Oval Office of the White House and governing from a corrupt and ignorant ideological theology. But that’s what millionaire ex-Senator Rick Santorum is offering. A sampling of his remarks, including the latest accusation that President Obama isn’t governing according to the Christian Bible, never mind what the Constitution says:

Obama’s agenda is "not about you. It’s not about your quality of life. It’s not about your jobs. It’s about some phony ideal. Some phony theology. Oh, not a theology based on the Bible. A different theology," Santorum told supporters of the conservative Tea Party movement at a Columbus hotel.

When asked about the statement at a news conference later, Santorum said, "If the president says he’s a Christian, he’s a Christian."

“America is a country that was founded on the concept that our rights come to us from our creator, come to us from God. He doesn’t say just do whatever you want to do with them, in fact he has laws we must abide by. In our case we have civil laws, but our civil laws have to comport with higher laws,” he said.

In 2005, then-Senator Santorum put forth an amendment to the Temporary Assistance for Needy Families program to expand then-current law to allow religious organizations that are recipients of federal funds under the Social Services Block Grant to discriminate in employment based on religion.33 The New York Times has referred to him as “the nation’s pre-eminent faith-based politician.”

“I knew when I won [my Senate race] that I had a constituency of one [God]. [My experience in the Senate] opened up to me why I was there and what God had called me to do.”

In 2001 then-Senator Santorum proposed incorporating pro-intelligent design language into the No Child Left Behind bill, that portrayed the theory of evolution as not widely accepted. He said that anytime evolution is taught, children should also be taught why the subject “generates so much continuing controversy”. In a recent interview he said, “Science will only allow things in the classroom that are consistent with a non-creator idea of how we got here, as if somehow or another that’s scientific.”

“As long as abortion is legal, we will never have rest because our law doesn’t comport with Gods law,” he said. Santorum signed a “personhood” pledge that invokes religion and “God” and states, “I oppose assisted suicide, euthanasia, embryonic stem cell research, and procedures that intentionally destroy developing human beings. […] Abortion and the intentional killing of an innocent human being are always wrong and should be prohibited. […] If elected President, I will work to advance state and federal laws and amendments that recognize the unalienable right to life of all human beings as persons at every stage of development, and to the best of my knowledge, I will only appoint federal judges and relevant officials who will uphold and enforce state and federal laws recognizing that all human being at every stage of development are person with the unalienable right to life.”

Santorum said marriage equality is ”messing with the basic family unit.” And supports a constitutional amendment that would ban gay marriage. Santorum said the overturning of sodomy laws is not constitutionally based. “The state is not doing a service to the child and to society by not putting that child in a home where there is a mother and a father. […] This is common sense. This is nature. And what we are trying to do is defy nature because a certain group of people want to be, want to be affirmed by society. And I just don’t think that’s to the benefit to society or the child. […] I don’t believe in same-sex adoption nor do I believe in same-sex marriage,” he said.

His campaign website states that he wants to “Restore conscience clause protections for health care workers.”

“One of the things that you don’t know about Obamacare and one of the mandates is they require free prenatal testing in every insurance policy in America. Why?  Because it saves money in health care. Why? Because free prenatal testing ends up in more abortions and therefore less care that has to be done because we cull the ranks of the disabled in our society.”

And to prove Santorum is not just about imposing his ignorant theocratic ideology on everyone in  America, here’s a quote from Ohio demonstrating his environmental chops:

Rick Santorum, at a campaign stop in Ohio, criticized liberal environmentalists that put the "Earth above man."

"Unlike the Earth, we’re intelligent, and we can actually manage things," Santorum said. In reference to liberals, Santorum said, "When it comes to management of the Earth, they are the anti-science ones."

This is the guy who wants creationism taught in the schools.

When America looks like Rick Santorum, then there will no longer be America. In its place will be something sick, psychotic, diseased, ignorant, and murderous. It will look like Europe during the height of the  madness of the Inquisition. And the country is beginning to look a lot like him and his kind, from the lowliest Protestant fundogelical sect to the United States Conference of Catholic Bishops. Ignorance and stupidity and evil know no religion, but both are at home there, in force.

Time  to take up a collection to send Santorum to Rome so he can run for Pope in the thirteenth century.

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Alabama Now Officially A Corrupt, Backwards Third World Country
December 14, 2011

Alabama, never a particularly modern state, has suffered corruption and incompetence since at least the time the dinosaurs died and were reincarnated as greedy politicians.

Now they’re really in the toilet, so to speak, or would be if anyone could afford the water and sewer bills created by the corrupt and incompetent politicians.

Redistribute Wealth? Hell Yes!
December 3, 2011

The Republican Tea Party makes a lot of noise accusing the Democrats, or anybody to the political left of the RTP screamers, of trying to redistribute the wealth, of handing over taxpayer money to the lazy poor who refuse to work, a category of citizens that includes everyone who is not a Republican or not wealthy enough to give gobs of money to the RTP.

The so-called redistribution of wealth is, in the cowled eyes of the RTP  stalwarts, socialism or communism or tyranny or whatever the flavor of crap Rush Limbaugh and Grover Norquist are handing out that day.

As  a result of RTP (and its predecessor Republican Reagan Party) influence and actions over the past thirty years or so, we have, ironically, seen wealth redistributed. Taxpayer money has flowed up to the wealthy, who have used it to buy politicians, buy legislation favorable to the acquisition of more and more wealth, and undermine democratic representative government in the United States. So simply on that score alone the RTP show themselves to be hypocrites pandering to the wealthy classes by distributing to them the money generated by the middle class and the working class and the working poor.

And in fact there are not enough wealthy people to do what the RTP ideologues believe wealthy people do. They cannot spend enough, consume enough, if you will, to make a mass society whole and functional. The money flows to them and stops. The only way to get it flowing is to pry it from them by taxing it.

Unfortunately for American society, a one-way flow of cash is a sure way to destroy American civilization. A civilization thrives on the circulation of money throughout the society, on money flowing down and up and laterally. Money’s the grease for the wheels of civilization. When one class of people collects the bulk of the money, the wheels stop turning and the society risks collapsing on itself and turning to chaos instead of rational governance.

The RTP is okay with that. They don’t want to spend taxpayer money on anything other than making sure that the wealthy keep their privileged status and pay little or no tax. That is their stated position. They’ve stated it over and over. It is their only position on governance, other than maintaining and expanding an already oversized military which they use to brutalize any third world country they decide they don’t like e.g., Grenada, Panama, most of Central America, Vietnam, Laos, Iraq, Afghanistan, Iran soon enough, etcetera ad nauseam. That’s pretty much the sum of the RTP programs and policy.

Unfortunately for the RTP one of the primary functions of government, of successful government, is the redistribution of wealth. Government collects taxes from the citizenry and puts that money to work where it will do the most good in maintaining a vital, thriving, democratic society. Government doesn’t do that perfectly: as a classic example of imperfection one need only remember the famed Alaskan “Bridge to Nowhere” sought by the Republican establishment a few years ago. But on the whole, under a reasonable and rational government, the system works to the benefit of society.

Suppose somewhere in the state of Iowa there exists an important bridge that is on the verge of failure. It is beyond patching and must be replaced. One might note that there are many such bridges in the country.

The state of Iowa can raise half the money, say, and turns to the Federal government for the rest. The Feds provide the money, from taxpayer funds (which is where all the money comes from in the first place), in the form of a loan, or perhaps a grant, or some other financial vehicle. Iowa can then proceed to design and build the new bridge.

But it is not government that builds the bridge. The Iowa Rundown Bridge Authority hires a private design firm and a private engineering firm.

Those two companies can now afford to hire some new people, and maybe expand their physical plant, thus putting some construction companies to work. Perhaps they buy new computers, putting a couple of more people to work at a computer company in Colorado.

Eventually steel is ordered, and concrete, and lumber. Those manufacturers might hire more people, buy more goods, buy more equipment, distributing the wealth, as it were.

Finally construction begins. Construction workers are hired and begin to draw their wages. They might now be able to afford to improve their house, buy a new car, buy a new home, and so on. Every purchase of goods helps more companies, helps more people, helps the society. Tax dollars have been distributed where they are needed and society benefits.

The RTP holds that money should go to the top, to a few people, to their so-called job creators. In fact those people do not create jobs, other than in minor ways, perhaps by hiring undocumented immigrants to cut their lawns, or increasing the number of financial drones in the bowel that is Goldman Sachs and the like. The wealthy invest their money in financial instruments that make more money but that don’t benefit society, if at all, anywhere near the level of benefits that building that new bridge in Iowa brings to society. Wealthy people are economic dead ends. Money flows to them and stops. The RTP would have the rest of society stand there with hands out hoping for the wealthy to trickle some money onto them. The RTP’s oft-stated philosophy claims it would do away with handouts, and yet they virtually guarantee that handouts are all that are left for the bulk of the citizenry.

And yes, there are problems with this model of economic operation. To function it must  have constant growth: more and more people must buy more and more goods. In the long run it is unsustainable, and in fact, considering what we have done to the environment that we absolutely depend on to sustain life on the planet, that system is deadly.

Controls are needed. Regulations are required. Governance must depend on rational, logical choices and decisions based on the best science and knowledge we can obtain. Growth must be constrained with the least damage to populations, and ultimately population must be constrained. These are legitimate concerns and must, absolutely must, be acted upon relatively soon.

But if the United States continues to act in ways that continue the RTP’s actual and stated policies, the country will fail to thrive, fail to survive. The United States is not “exceptional”, as the RTP and other juvenile minds crow and boast. It is subject to the same logic, the same failings, as every other empire throughout history. The sooner the United States and its adolescent leadership give up the idea of being special, of being exceptional, of existing outside the laws of governance and science and human behavior, the sooner it can confront reality and deal with its problems and help to lead the world away from the brink.

But for better or for worse, that bridge in Iowa must be built if the country is to survive.

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The Real Skinny On Climate Change Not In U.S. Media But Guess Where…
June 23, 2011

Here’s a piece that pulls no punches on climate change/global warming, and you won’t find it in the American media with its happytalk airheads and so-called objective reporting and its vast wasteland of useless trivia and trivialization of virtually everything.

Nope, not on Fox or MSNBC or CNN or ABC or CBS or anything like those, except maybe over at Current where Olbermann now resides. Not in the New York Times or the other top tier American newspapers.

Nope, you have to go far afield, have to go among the people our politicians, wholly owned whores of the fossil fuel and war industries, have demonized and slaughtered.

Go read it over at Aljazeera. You might learn something. Probably not something you’ll get real thrilled about learning though. It’s a real kick in the head. Or punch in the face. Too bad the Washington crowd of inbreeders won’t ever read it. Not that they would pay attention even if they did take time off from whoring for the Koch brothers and their fascisti crowd.

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Bush On Climate Change: My Lips Are Moving, So I Must Be Lying
September 29, 2007

First let’s address the moronic headline in today’s Globe about Bush’s private climate change meeting, which any fool knows had no purpose but to distract the news media from the grown-up climate change meeting at the United Nations.

But the Globe just buys into the whole Bush macho thing, headlining the story Bush vows US role in warming fight.

Oh yeah! There’s the cowboy image, codpiece and ten gallon hat and bowlegged walk that Bush likes to cultivate. But he’s all hat and the hat’s full of hot air. (The Lion would not want to speculate on what the codpiece is full of, but he would bet it’s just as full of fantasy as Bush’s head.)

Bush’s climate plan comes down to a simple statement: Some science geeks are whining about the temperature, so if you folks want to do something about that, y’all go ahead, but I don’t really care one way or the other and I’m not gonna do squat.

Obviously Bush is more concerned about continuing the slaughter in Iraq and pursuing a chimera of democracy there, no matter the cost to anyone but him and his wealthy friends and his thieving family, than he is about doing anything to mitigate the physical planetary processes that threaten a massive extinction of life.

Meanwhile the rest of world, much of which is pissed at the American attitude, wrings its hands and moans that they have to wait until the little psychotic is out of office, and hope someone with a sober brain gets into the White House.

And if that doesn’t happen?

The Lion suggests another plan. The issue is too crucial for the world to wait for a nutcase and his crew of crazies to suddenly get sane or get gone. So how about the world just stops dealing with the United States. Don’t buy US products. Don’t do deals with US companies. Kick the US out of your countries. And do the same with places like China and India.

Quick, everybody put their hands on their faces and wail “Oh no, we can’t do that! Oh no, our economies will suffer! Oh no!”

Bullcrap!

If you don’t bring the major polluters to heel, your economies will die, your people will die, your nations will die. Your economy isn’t going to be worth snail crap when it’s under 200 feet of seawater and the daily temperature is 130 degrees or more.

So there’s a choice. Suffer some now, or suffer complete destruction later.

The major polluters are committing murder on a mass scale. They behave like criminals. Treat them like criminals.

Or be their victims.

The False Economies of Cattle Raising…
June 7, 2007

It’s been noted elsewhere that it takes 2500 gallons of water to create one pound of beef. Given the coming changes in our environment – climate change, massive water shortages, droughts – wouldn’t it be sensible to stop raising cattle and turn the land to something more efficient and productive?

That’s just way too rational and intelligent. No, the solution that the cattle people and their federal friendlies will propose is a long range, multi-decade genetic study devoted to creating cattle that will require only 2250 gallons of water per pound of beef.

Of course, by the time they figure any of this out the problem will have been solved. What humans remain by then will be eating what little grass remains. Voila! Eliminate the middle cow. Problem solved.

Global Climate Armageddon
April 15, 2007

New reports come out every week, it seems, about the havoc that climate change will wreak on civilization. The latest, written about in the NY Times today, from a government-financed group of generals and admirals, the Center for Naval Analyses, notes that climate change poses a major security threat to the United States. It’s another in a long line of reports telling the administration, and the people, that there are a hell of a lot more advantages to dealing with the problem now, and aggressively, than in doing the nothing that the Administration is utterly intent on doing.

The problem is that the disgusting little man in the White House and his Bible-toting cohorts are actually looking forward to the end of civilization, and of course to making as much money off it as they possibly can. I’m thinking they want the money to either buy a lot of air-conditioning, or to bribe the gatekeepers of heaven to look the other way when they get there, because otherwise they’ll all be spending eternity in a well-deserved spot in a very much hotter place. (That’s their theology. I don’t believe in that nonsense. I say jail these psychotics in Abu Ghraib now.)

Until we throw Bush and the Conservatives on the ash heaps of history, nothing will be done about climate change. Not in America. Not by the Federal Government. Not by the Republicans and the Conservatives. Bush and his pals are in love with Death, and they won’t be happy until they bring it down on all of us.