October 10, 2018
In the wake of the new IPCC special report, the NYTimes declared (emphasis added) in its editorial today:
…the world must utterly transform its energy systems in the next decade or risk ecological and social disaster, attention must be paid….
The panel said a mammoth effort is needed, beginning now and carrying through the century, to decarbonize global energy systems. The next 10 years are absolutely crucial: Emissions will have to be on a sharp downward path by 2030 for any hope of success. Greenhouse gases must be cut nearly in half from 2010 levels. Renewable energy sources must increase from about 20 percent of the electricity mix today to as much as 67 percent. The use of coal would need to be phased out, vanishing almost entirely by midcentury.
Okay, so there we have it. A clear and stunning prediction of doom, the End Times of the Climate Apocalypse are nigh! 2030 is not so far off, and a very large proportion of the readers of this post (all three of you!) are likely to be around then to test the propositions pronounced in the editorial.
My prediction is that in before 2030, if people are still excited about this issue, we will see articles about how new studies have put off the day of reckoning to 2040 or 2050, the standard moving the goalposts routine. Or, they may declare that the delay of crisis is due to the heroic (unspecified) reductions in GHG accomplished as a result of their indomitable advocacy. If I am wrong, I won’t be happy! 😦
October 9, 2018
The little data graphic below shows what we all know: a little over half the people voted in 2016, and of those that did, the plurality voted for Clinton.
Now our elected (?) president has been able to appoint two justices to the Supreme Court, on which they serve for life. Maybe that made sense in the 18th century when a judge granted a life seat might be expected to stick around for ten, fifteen, perhaps twenty years, but today..? In the most recent case, the population represented by the senators who voted for or against Kavanaugh shakes out as shown below – a clear majority of the population was represented by the senators who voted against him. (In cases of states where the vote was split, I calculated a 50/50 split of the population for each side.)
So now we have a president elected by a minority of the population (that voted!) appointing a justice who is confirmed by a clear minority of the represented population, and who can join with his other coreligionist reactionaries to rule on the rights of all of us, as codified in the sacred words written over 200 years ago when, you know, slavery was okay, women didn’t vote, there was no electricity, and not even any TV!
October 7, 2018
In the Flatiron Plaza, by Jorge Palacios. Bigger image here.
The Noguchi Museum in Queens is featuring Palacios’ work right now. The “Red Cube,” one of Noguchi’s most famous public sculptures is not, of course, a cube.
October 6, 2018
Maybe you can tell what these are, some of them anyway. They were taken with my Celestron digital microscope. Click on the thumbnails to see an enlarged image.