"Where is the oil? Except for little of chunks of it, you're not even seeing it on the shore yet." FOX's Brit Hume, saying the Gulf spill is no big deal, Link
"Britt Hume isn't sure there's actually a massive oil disaster in the Gulf, but he was absolutely fucking certain there were WMD's in Iraq." Attaturk, Link
And how could we ever forget Lee Raymond?
Turkana: The Gulf of Mexico may be dying, but that's not the big story. The danger may already be spreading out of the Gulf and into the Atlantic, but that's not the big story. The entire Southeast Coast could be in danger, but even that's not the big story. Joe Romm, of Climate Progress, has the big story:
It was the hottest April on record in the NASA dataset. More significantly, following fast on the heels of the hottest March and hottest Jan-Feb-March on record, it's also the hottest Jan-Feb-March-April on record [click on figure to enlarge].
The record temperatures we're seeing now are especially impressive because we've been in "the deepest solar minimum in nearly a century." It now appears to be over. It's just hard to stop the march of manmade global warming, well, other than by reducing greenhouse gas emissions, that is.
Most significantly, NASA's March prediction has come true: "It is nearly certain that a new record 12-month global temperature will be set in 2010.″
Our dependence on foreign sources of oil is a problem, but it isn't the real problem. Our dependence on dangerous drilling in fragile ecosystems is a problem, but it isn't the real problem.
The real problem is our dependence on fossil fuels. It doesn't matter where they come from, and it doesn't matter how they are drilled or mined. We cannot continue to burn fossil fuels. We have to create the technologies and the infrastructure, we have to educate the public and give people real alternatives, and we have to act as if we are in a crisis. Because we are. And it cannot be said often enough.
There's an awesome article by Michael Lind at Salon today; in it, Lind breaks down the history of American capitalism into five different versions, leading to a point now, where, he says, it's time for a new version, American capitalism 6.0. What Lind leaves out is that each of his time periods ends with a great upheaval in the nation that forces social changes. For instance, version 1.0 ends with the Civil War. Sometimes, the result is a more responsible capitalist model, as with version 4.0, which came after the Great Depression, and, according to Lind, was, for all intents and purposes, a time of responsible capitalism. Then, post-1960s and 1970s rights movements and the Vietnam War, the increasing drive towards globalization saw an abandonment of regulation, starting with President Carter, and a greed virus released on the financial markets that has led us to our current endtimes. Lind concludes, "Capitalism 6.0 will be just as American as its predecessors, but it will be better than what we have today. It could not possibly be worse."
Uncontrolled Experiment by Mary
Although we humans see the effects of the oil gushing in the Gulf of Mexico in the encroaching veil of oil approaching land, the costs to the environment are much greater than we can yet know. Joel Achenbach writes about the mysterious life that inhabits the deep water of the gulf:
There is beauty in the lightless deep as well. Fan corals, lacylike doilies, form gardens on the seafloor and on sunken ships. The deep is full of crabs, sponges, sea anemones. Sharks hunt in the dark depths, as do sperm whales that feed on giant squid. The sperm whales have formed a year-round colony near the mouth of the Mississippi River, and have been known to rub themselves on oil pipes just like grizzlies rubbing against pine trees.
This is the unseen world imperiled by the uncapped oil well a mile below the surface of the gulf. The millions of gallons of crude, and the introduction of chemicals to disperse it, have thrown this underwater ecosystem into chaos, and scientists have no answer to the question of how this unintended and uncontrolled experiment in marine biology and chemistry will ultimately play out.
We must hope that something can be done to stop or greatly slow down this gusher soon, but the damage from the witch's brew created by humans in their lust for oil and the greed of the corporate chieftains that decided cutting corners in order to maximize profit will transform the ecology of the gulf for decades if not longer. Who knows when it will ever recover?
If Bristol can pick up $30,000 for a speech, then more power to her. Perhaps she does have something real to contribute to the issue of teenage pregnancy. In any case, we can't hold it against her for being born to a self-serving, dimwit of a mom. Hopefully, for her sake, she'll eventually get an education and become more than the daughter of $arah Palin.
Good luck, kid. That is one huge monkey on your back.
Interesting - The very First bank bailout?
I've never understood this business of so-called Christians excusing their misdeeds by saying "I'm born again and forgiven" -- because a Jewish guy was nailed to a cross 2000 years ago. Even if you want to say that this act somehow absorbed all the sins of humanity in perpetuity, why the awesomeness of this act of self-sacrifice isn't taken seriously by such people is a mystery to me. I mean, if someone lets himself be killed for you, don't you owe it to that person's memory to live up to that sacrifice, rather than taking it as a "Get out of jail free" card?
I talk a lot about this idea of God and Satan playing Skee-Ball in a Keansburg, NJ arcade and Satan getting bonus points for successfully tempting Christians, but that's my construction based on someone a Christofascist Zombie once told me rather than any kind of official Christian doctrine.
So it's amusing, if predictable, to see the Usual Suspects blaming everything but Mark Souder's own hypocrisy and hubris for his downfall: http://brilliantatbreakfast.blogspot.com/2010/05/baby-jesus-died-on-cross-so-mark-souder.html
Southerners were doing stupid shit in the early 1960s, saying that President Kennedy was a traitor and that he should be killed. They've done their level best to wash history of their despicable actions, but we all know what happened.
So stuff like this, where a teacher in Alabama uses a hypothetical assassination of President Obama to teach geometry, doesn't surprise me one bit.
Sedition runs deep in the South.
Bakery chain Panera Bread opens non-profit, pay-what-you-want shop.