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writing for godot

The Republicans are f***ing Us Right Now

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Written by John Glassco   
Wednesday, 08 March 2017 05:55

Most of us got here because of American science and engineering. Without sanitation systems, industrial farming, medical technology, and extensive research and development, our population would be a fraction of what it is today, and most of us never would have been born.

It does not seem right to turn our backs on our way of survival and success because of the suspicion of a few politicians, and their press, that the system is corrupt, or that it is producing hoaxes, or fake news.

Science is sufficient to produce its own proof of success. You may not agree that the atom bomb is an engineering success, but you can not deny that it is a product of pure science, or that it is a fact on the face of the earth, besides being an American invention.

The republicans have decided to be the anti-science party. They have put their marker down on black - no action on climate. They have chosen an anti-science stance at a time when republicans unquestionably have both houses of the government, the President, such as he is, the majority of governors, and the talk media, and the business community, all piled up basically against their academic "enemy."

Republican have made themselves enemies of the universities, the intellectuals, the entire science community, most of the rest of the world, and with what? . . . . . . a typically arrogant and unproven suspicion that they are smarter than science.

Now I know that people who understand the problem also know that this behavior is both futile and self-destructive. We are simply waiting for the series of blustering denials of a range of coming catastrophic climatic disasters, that like the disaster of Pearl Harbor, will finally seal the coffin of climate denial for good.

It will be too late to react by then because it is probably already too late. I know exactly on which side of this divide I want to be on no matter how anyone's perception may be pointed, or their politics. My marker is on red.

 

Many years ago when I was bored one day between classes at the U of Calgary, I picked out a random book on a random shelf on a random floor of the library. It was the Louisiana budget of 1980. I learned, and most people don't know that Louisiana was then the second largest oil producer next to Texas, a position recently nabbed by North Dakota.

That year, the oil industry, Louisiana's largest income producer, had drilled more feet of exploratory well than they ever had. Their revenue was up, but the production was a fraction of their best year. In 1980, their production was way down on the bell curve. They had passed peak oil in the 1960s. They were now drilling over 2 miles down with the latest drilling technology, and finding much less oil.

Ever since gaining that knowledge, I have been thinking about the oil. The oil is now found under two miles of silt. Each particle of oil was once part of the digestive system of a plant or animal sequestering carbon from the atmosphere in its biological process, and trapping the solar energy from that lifetime's sunshine in the equation.

Burned oil creates a volume of carbon dioxide that is more than twice the volume of the oil burned when the carbon dioxide is compressed into a liquid. That the industry will research and eventually "sequester" this atmospheric carbon is the snake oil that the fossil fuel industry is selling to have us allow them to continue using our atmosphere as their slag heap. I am not buying.

CCS (carbon capture and sequestration) would consume lots of energy. The mythical process compresses, transports (as a chilled liquid,) stores underground, and babysits the carbon for ever in geologic formations. This is a challenge on-par with the search for the philosopher's stone. This impossible quest also applies to the gas and coal industries who are remaining very quiet these days about carbon capture. This is in spite of their many optimistic ads featuring their cheerful "energy voters."

In some cases, the oil we are drilling for today was sequestered in the ground hundreds of millions of years ago. It struck me at the time in the library, that this industrial process of drilling for oil, had the potential to produce a profound impact on the biosphere, essentially spinning our atmospheric carbon levels back to the Eoarchean era at the dawn of life on the planet. There is no turning back from our turbulent future, even if the republicans come around.

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+8 # chapdrum 2017-03-08 18:17
When are they not f***ing us?
 
 
+3 # TruthSeemsToBeRelative 2017-03-09 15:21
John Glassco started this article with scientific achievements and prowess, then spoke of Republican Party pseudo-science or policies that fly in the face of scientific evidence.

I will add that politicians and think-tanks they attend will choose certain scientific "facts" and data to support an agenda. Agendas often result from a business focus or goal, with funding for PR and lobbyists. This can happen with any party affiliation or lack thereof.

In Deep State politics, hidden agendas guide public policies, with little to no regard as to who is the public figurehead.

Look for instance at water fluoridation in the USA. 98% of European countries have banned it, for good reason. San Diego has outlawed it for 60 years, but CA law enforcement has stepped in, requiring the city to comply. What's the hidden agenda here? Junk science can be a tool.
 
 
0 # universlman 2017-03-26 17:29
compared with democrats, small R republicans are more likely to find themselves in with the science denial crowd - I don't think there should be much disagreement about that - people are free to pick their blind-spots, but people who sport them proudly are seldom seen as winners once the fog clears, and it always clears
 

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