Will a new ‘Weather Commission’ be a benefit or a travesty?

A supercell thunderstorm menaces central Oklahoma on May 17, 2010. Tornadoes and hurricanes have killed more than 2,000 Americans and wreaked billions of dollars in damage over the last decade. Credit: ©UCAR. Photo by Carlye Calvin.

This smells like Trenberth’s doings at the behest of Al Gore and his “Dirty Weather” Campaign. If so, then I’m against it, because all this will do is create another bureaucracy loaded with opinionated thinkers sucking up more tax dollars adding to the already out of control federal deficit.

From the  National Center for Atmospheric Research/University Corporation for Atmospheric Research.

Experts call on Congress to create first US Weather Commission

WASHINGTON, D.C. — With the U.S. economy vulnerable to weather events costing billions of dollars, an expert panel today asked Congress to create the first U.S. Weather Commission. The commission would provide guidance to policymakers on leveraging weather expertise across government and the private sector to better protect lives and businesses.

“The nation must focus its weather resources on the areas of greatest need in order to keep our economy competitive and provide maximum protection of lives and property,” says Thomas Bogdan, president of the University Corporation for Atmospheric Research. “Emerging technologies are providing an opportunity to create forecasts that are more accurate and detailed than ever, and to communicate them instantly to key communities and businesses. We need a U.S. Weather Commission to ensure that our entire weather research and technology enterprise provides maximum benefit to the nation.”

At a time of fast-changing technological innovation, the commission would advise federal policymakers on setting priorities for improving forecasts and creating a more weather-proof nation. The goal is to help ensure cost-effective spending on the nation’s weather systems while minimizing the impacts of both major storms, which last year alone cost about $52 billion, and normal fluctuations in weather, which have an estimated annual economic impact of $485 billion.

Earlier this year, the National Academy of Sciences released a hallmark report, Weather Services for the Nation: Becoming Second to None. The report concluded that, even with recent concerted and much-needed efforts to modernize the National Weather Service, the country faces challenges in harnessing the best science and private sector resources available for protecting the nation from weather impacts.

These challenges are rooted in evolving scientific and technological advances, rapidly changing needs of the nation’s weather information consumers, and an increasingly capable and growing third-party community of weather services providers.

Congress has twice created an ocean commission for setting direction on commerce, research, and defense related to the world’s oceans. But there has never been a U.S. Weather Commission, even though weather has far-reaching effects on all Americans.

Commissioners would provide guidance on issues such as making appropriate investments in satellite and radar systems, protecting vulnerable communities, setting research priorities, and meeting the needs of key sectors, ranging from agriculture to utilities to the U.S. armed forces.

“Weather is immeasurably important to public safety and our economic competitiveness,” says Pam Emch, a senior staff engineer/scientist with Northrop Grumman Corporation and one of the panelists. “Effective organization of the diverse entities that span our weather enterprise is necessary for economic stability, innovation, and the good of the nation.”

“Improved weather information can be an engine for economic growth,” says panelist William Gail, co-founder and chief technology officer of the Global Weather Corporation. “As we develop increasingly detailed understanding of our atmosphere, there is enormous potential for helping the public and businesses.”

“We must keep pace with accelerating scientific and technological advances and meet expanding user needs in our increasingly information-centric society,” says panelist John Armstrong, chair of the Committee on the Assessment of the National Weather Service’s Modernization Program.

Bogdan says that a commission approach, guided by key actors across the entire weather enterprise, will provide needed direction and consensus.

“The U.S. Weather Commission offers the promise of better research, state-of-the-art prediction, and protection for the health and prosperity of the U.S.,” he says. “It will also foster growth for the innovative private weather sector we have all come to rely upon. This is an issue that affects all members of Congress and all their constituents, no matter where they live.”

Today’s panel briefing was the first step in a process that will continue into the next Congress. The panel’s next steps are to brief staff and members on the importance of the commission and the role it will play, seeking their guidance and support for establishing the commission in 2013.

###

The University Corporation for Atmospheric Research manages the National Center for Atmospheric Research in Boulder, Colorado, under sponsorship by the National Science Foundation. Any opinions, findings and conclusions, or recommendations expressed in this publication are those of the author(s) and do not necessarily reflect the views of the National Science Foundation.

On the Web:

For news releases, images, and more www.ucar.edu/atmosnews

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89 thoughts on “Will a new ‘Weather Commission’ be a benefit or a travesty?

  1. “The commission would provide guidance to policymakers on leveraging weather expertise across government and the private sector to better protect lives and businesses.”

    Ah, yes. “We’re from the government. We’re here to protect you.” Just what we need!

  2. So that University Corporation is from the same group that issued that troubling USGCRP 2013-2021 report. Given the fact that I see every NAS released report it is difficult for me not to see this as a continuation of the model of treating the economy and the environment as a single ecosystem that government officials plan to redesign and plan. Then the only science becomes officially approved science.

    I think the key words are in the phrase “harnessing the best science and private sector resources available for protecting the nation from weather impacts”. A report that came out about 10 days ago from NAS on Advanced Climate Change Modelling proposed making sure the “Best Minds” went into Climate Change Research. Basically the federal purse that is our taxes or indebtedness tries to corrupt talent with a better paycheck than anyone else is offering.

    Ditto on the language about “private sector resources” being harnessed. The government becomes the primary customer and then uses that monopsony power to control development. Much like WalMart with its vendors. Every report I have seen coming out of NAS or UN is adamant about wanting control over future technology development in all areas. In fact the UN wants veto rights to prevent countries from going into the production phase without UN approval.

    It would not be an overstatement to say the bureaucrats and politicians really do want to control and direct economic development and human behavior of the masses going forward. And honestly that has never worked well anytime in history. There is no more likely cause of a stagnant economy than making the only prosperity for the political entrepreneurs. The players with their own lobbyists.

  3. Anthony:

    You write

    This smells like Trenbert’s (sic) doings at the behest of Al Gore and his “Dirty Weather” Campaign. If so, then I’m against it, because all this will do is create another bureaucracy loaded with opinionated thinkers sucking up more tax dollars adding to the already out of control federal deficit.

    I remind that I have been warning about the likelihood of such bureaucracies because –
    as the AGW-scare fades away – those in ‘prime positions’ will attempt to establish rules and bureaucracies to impose those rules which provide immortality to their objectives. Guarding against those attempts now needs to be a serious activity.

    I wrote on WUWT and elsewhere saying the AGW-scare was killed at the failed 2009 IPCC Conference in Copenhagen. I said then that the scare would continue to move as though alive in similar manner to a beheaded chicken running around a farmyard. It continues to provide the movements of life but it is already dead. And its deathly movements provide an especial problem.

    Nobody will declare the AGW-scare dead: it will slowly fade away. This is similar to the ‘acid rain’ scare of the 1980s. Few remember that scare unless reminded of it but its effects still have effects; e.g. the Large Combustion Plant Directive (LCPD) exists. Importantly, the bureaucracy which the EU established to operate the LCPD still exists. And those bureaucrats justify their jobs by imposing ever more stringent, always more pointless, and extremely expensive emission limits which are causing enforced closure of UK power stations.

    Bureaucracies are difficult to eradicate and impossible to nullify.

    Richard

  4. Big State.
    I thought that went out with Khruschev.
    Or Brezhnev, anyway.
    Even on this side of the pond, the Shadow Chancellor [Opposition finance chappie] has indicated a ‘ruthless’ review of state spending – and he of the neo-endogenous growth theory [ I F I understood him!], was the architect of the colossal state spending that, even now, sees the UK Government spend two thousand pounds – for every man woman and child in the country – that it doesn’t raise in taxes, fees, charges etc. – this year alone, adding to the already mountainous debts we have from the Brown Profligacy. And so H.M. Government borrows those many many tens of billions. We have to pay that back – and interest in the meantime.
    So.
    Guess what – look out for INFLATION [also called Quantitive Easing when it’s an mewling infant].

  5. We need weather commission? What do you call NOAA?
    Oh… NOAA doesn’t have any power to make law.

    I have an idea… Try advising Congress rather than circumventing it. It is far more Constitutional.

  6. Jeebous.

    “…Becoming Second to None…” {snicker, yeah, I’ve seen that before}

    It should be more … factual.

    “Second to None, First to Nobody, and Third in a Class all by themselves.”

  7. Writing from the almost bankrupt UK I have no dog in this fight, but it seems that you have a National Science Foundation which manages the University Corporation for Atmospheric Research which manages the National Centre for Atmospheric research which wants to set up (and manage) a U.S. Weather Commission, to provide “better research and state-of-the-art prediction”. How many layers of management can you afford before you get to where someone does any actual work?

    And if it’s going to be “better research and state-of-the-art prediction” what’s the betting that it’ll be models all the way down?

    Apologies for interfering from this side of the pond.

  8. Just what you need, your very own Met Office, with huge and expensive computers, hundreds of staff, shiny state-of-the-art buildings and overseen by over-paid zealots.

  9. You just sense that the Commission will not have your best interests at heart. In Australia they set up a Climate Commissioner with huge annual remuneration and he is as useful as a Wombat at helping anyone on weather or climate.
    No, sorry, that does a dis-service to Wombats.

  10. Looks like it’s almost 10:1, we should focus on “normal fluctuations of weather”.

    By 485 to 52 billion normal is the new bad! Who’d a thunk?

  11. What a wonderful new government sponsored scam. If there is a drought, the commission can pay for rain dances.

    Perhaps the commission can hire the UK MET weather forecasters to provide long range forecasts for the US.

    Everyone complains about the weather. This new commission can really do something about it.

  12. “Tear down the wall!” – Pink Floyd, 1982
    “Tear down this wall!” – Ronald Reagan, 1987

    My original post was to the Judge animated character from a Pink
    Floyd movie which I labelled: “Tribunal.”

  13. From the picture credit:

    Tornadoes and hurricanes have killed more than 2,000 Americans and wreaked billions of dollars in damage over the last decade.

    Sounds scary.

    So, just to compare, how many people lost their lives due to tornadoes and hurricanes in every other decade?

    What is the trend? It’s definitely in the DOWN direction…

  14. “The nation must focus its weather resources on the areas of greatest need in order to keep our economy competitive and provide maximum protection of lives and property, … ”

    In other words: Pass new laws on the basis of completed scientific papers.

    “Commissioners would provide guidance on issues such as making appropriate investments in satellite and radar systems, protecting vulnerable communities, setting research priorities, ”

    In other words: The government will choose which scientific papers are to be completed.

  15. Just what we need is another unconstitutional Government agency. In the case of a weather one, it stands to reason that they will never solve whatever problem they imagine it to be, so they have a public trough swilling for life.

  16. This could be a good thing, if they stick with the weather, and known working weather predicting techniques, and avoid climate modeling altogether. Hopefully it won’t end up the the UK MET.

  17. dismantling the CAGW should be the priority, not building more:

    19 Sept: Reuters: Alister Doyle: Climate change threatens nature from coffee
    to Arctic fox-forum
    Price said Colombian coffee plantations, for instance, would have to be
    shifted to higher altitudes and onto more shaded northern slopes as
    temperatures rose. “It’s going to require wholesale movements of coffee
    plantations in Colombia,” he (Jeff Price, coordinator of the Wallace
    Initiative) said.
    That could put coffee more into competition with habitats for rare tropical
    animals and plants…
    In Scandinavia, the Arctic fox is among animals under pressure since climate
    change is reducing the availability of its main prey, the lemming. And red
    foxes, bigger than their Arctic cousins, are moving north as temperatures
    warm.
    “In a bad lemming year there won’t be many Arctic foxes born,” Anouschka
    Hof, of Umea University in Sweden told the GBIF, which is funded by
    governments…
    Warming temperatures are also be a threat to many northern plants. The
    northern bilberry, for instance, may gain niches such as on the coast of
    Greenland in coming decades but will lose far bigger areas to the south.
    “There are not many place where the northern plants can move into. The
    Arctic is mainly ocean,” said Inger Greve Alsos of the University of Tromsoe
    in Norway. “We expect a loss of range for many plants.”…
    An early peak to greenhouse gases would give the biggest respite to animals
    in places such as the Amazon basin, southern Africa, southern Australia,
    parts of Russia and Asia.
    Plants would also benefit most in the Andes, southern Africa and Australia,
    according to ***modeling*** by the Wallace Initiative, named after British
    naturalist Alfred Russel Wallace, the co-author with Charles Darwin of the
    theory of evolution in 1858…

    http://in.reuters.com/article/2012/09/19/us-climate-species-idINBRE88I0ZB20120919

    ABCG Adaptation Workshop: Climate Tools
    The Wallace Initiative is a collaboration of WWF-US, Tyndall Climate Change
    Centre (University of East Anglia), Center for Tropical Biodiversity and
    Climate Change and Research Center (James Cook University), National Climate
    Change Adaptation Research Facility, Global Biodiversity Information
    Facility, and Center for Tropical Agriculture …

    http://frameweb.org/adl/en-US/7475/file/997/Climate%20Tools.pdf

  18. bit more about the Wallace Initiative:

    March 2010: CIAT: The Wallace Initiative: Preserving Biodiversity in an Era
    of Change
    by Julian Ramirez-Villegas |
    Last year during a meeting at Copenhagen in March, our program leader Andy
    Jarvis performed a set of very interesting presentations on the impacts of
    climate change on agriculture and biodiversity. Luckily, and thanks to our
    hard work, and to substantial efforts done by Jeff Price from WWF, Rachel
    Warren from Tyndall Centre, and to the funding provided by GBIF, The
    Wallace Initiative was born…
    We then held a meeting in Tyndall Centre in August, while I was visiting the
    UK to receive training on UK MetOffice’s PRECIS modeling system…
    A new member of the Wallace Initiative was then appointed. Amy McDougall, a
    PhD student from University of East Anglia, under Rachel’s supervision. We
    invited Amy to Colombia, to learn the whole thing of modeling that we’re
    doing at CIAT under The Wallece Inititative framework. Some of her feelings:
    “It has been said that modelers are the James Bonds of the Scientific
    Community, stepping out into the tropical heat of a Cali evening, there was
    no one I felt less like. However, I came to Cali on a mission- as a newly
    appointed member of the Wallace Initiative Team, it was time to learn my
    trade.”…

    http://dapa.ciat.cgiar.org/the-wallace-initiative-preserving-biodiversity-in-an-era-of-change/

  19. “…all this will do is create another bureaucracy loaded with opinionated thinkers sucking up more tax dollars adding to the already out of control federal deficit.”

    I couldn’t agree more Anthony. Even if there were some benefit to the idea, it doesn’t make sense to do it at a federal level. Resources would be better devoted to addressing weather related issues at a regional level, e.g. the concerns of the gulf coast are pretty different from Great Lakes region. Not much thought put into this idea except of course to provide another federal teat for all the climate drones being cloned in graduate programs at universities everywhere.

  20. This is government by decree. It doesn’t take much foresight to see dictatorship approaching. We’re already three fourths of the way there.

    The naive and credulous will now tell me to put on a tin foil hat, I suppose. But this is from a very well respected Democratic pollster.

  21. And the very first report by the new US Weather Commissioner would be something along the lines of “if we don’t spend an extra 1 trillion dollars studying CO2 we’ll be DOOMED. Doomed, I tell you.”

  22. Skeptic says:
    September 28, 2012 at 3:01 pm
    Is it just me, or is Jo Nova’s site down again?

    The site loads for me using Chrome — she is not quite fully back in the sense of new and interesting posts. Give her another day.

  23. Commissioners would provide guidance on issues such as making appropriate investments in satellite and radar systems, protecting vulnerable communities, setting research priorities, and meeting the needs of key sectors, ranging from agriculture to utilities to the U.S. armed forces.

    I read that as “Commissars would provide guidance on issues.”

  24. Just about like asking the Mafia to set up a Federal Morals and Ethics Commission.

    This is one very, very bad idea congressmen. Senator Inhofe, heads up.

  25. @george e smith says:
    September 28, 2012 at 2:55 pm
    Just what we need is another unconstitutional Government agency. In the case of a weather one, it stands to reason that they will never solve whatever problem they imagine it to be, so they have a public trough swilling for life.
    ==================
    Indeed. That is exactly what I was thinking!

    What they need to do is free the met staff innovators in the trenches to continue enhancing the detection technology, as well as the methods for notifying vulnerable populations when a threat is looming. From where I sit (in Tornado Alley), there are parts of the country that could do with a good upgrading of their weather technology and staff, and have a few lessons on how to tell when a big blow is coming. There have been tornadic storms in some unusual areas lately. I keep thinking that if they had met staff like we have, and awesome radar technology like we have, they could have protected themselves.

  26. If creation of this agency requires legislation, it probably won’t get through Congress. If it can be done by administrative fiat, then congress will get bypassed. This is likely to happen if the current administration gets voted back in November. Let’s hope for the former situation.

  27. Just the creation of another utterly pointless bureaucracy, presumably designed to transfer existing bureaucrats in overpaid jobs into even more overpaid jobs in bigger offices.

    I have tried hard, but I cannot think of any other reason for suggesting the creation of a new Weather Commission.

  28. I know it has been quoted here many times before but is worth reminding ourselves again of Eisenhower in 1961:

    The prospect of domination of the nation’s scholars by Federal employment, project allocations, and the power of money is ever present and is gravely to be regarded.

  29. Katherine,

    I read it exactly the same way at first: commissars.

    The past century and a half has been about the best climate in history. Not too hot, not too cold, but just right. Temperature variation has been ≤ 0.8ºC over the past 150 years. You could not ask for a better global climate. It is as perfect as it ever gets.

    Now the bureaucrats want to diddle with it. Or pretend to, because humans can only affect local climates through UHI effects. We cannot alter the global temperature. And the “carbon” nonsense is being falsified by Mother Earth herself. CO2 simply does not have the claimed effect.

    Anyone who cannot see this as just a big government money making power grab should not be allowed to vote; they’re that stupid.

  30. Of course, we need more committees, commissions, departments, agencies … h*ll, entire other governments! Where would we get a job without them? (sarc off)

  31. Simple, USAans… Vote, when you vote make sure you choose an Adult. In Australia we forgot that last federal election, we chose a Party, the Party is full of children, and sheep of children, with only one or two real Adults. Choose wisely USA.

    Think about your local representative. Think about your freedoms, anyone who for a moment mentions anything about curbing your freedom (to emit CO2, to build on your property, to fill your swimming pool, to eat what you want, to keep your animals, to decorate your house, to have parties…. or whatever) MUST NOT BE ALLOWED TO HOLD OFFICE. Look at their pronouncements, if they ever say I will impose this law “For the good of the community” be afraid, be very afraid and vote for someone else. “For the good of the community” is the key mark that your freedoms are being attacked.

    PS. Jo Nova is getting there, I expect it’ll be bigger better and more hacker proof when she returns

  32. That man, William Gail, has the perfect name to lead the Commission, even if the Commission is a bad idea. Just saying!

  33. While they are creating agencies to deal with science fiction threats will they also be creating a group like Men In Black to deal with all the threats from alien species? Based on all the models, the threat from aliens is worse than we first thought. The models show it will get even worse as the population increases. Perhaps a human birth licence cap a trade market would also help?

  34. This reminds me of this bit of wisdom from Dorothy Parker:

    The power to do things for you is the power to do things to you.

  35. “… another bureaucracy loaded with opinionated thinkers sucking up more tax dollars …”

    A short but succinct description of one of the prime factors in the ongoing necrosis of Western – and, over the last century or so, global – civilisation. Layer upon layer of “commissions” and “experts” and “trusts” and “advisors” and “non-governmental* – yet strangely powerful! – organisations, or whatever you want to call your latest bunch of “technocrats”, all sucking inflated livings (either directly from the public teat via tax or indirectly via inflating prices) while contributing little, if anything, of any value. The “little people” who actually contribute their blood, sweat and tears to making things work never get to elect them, of course, they are summoned into existence by the existing parasitocracy and rarely, if ever dismissed.

    Here in the UK, the phrase “a culture of entitlement” is well-known political doublespeak, used to condemn those at the bottom of the economic heap, struggling to scratch a mean living on shrinking benefits after their jobs have been destroyed. The parasite class, meanwhile, display that culture in its highest and most destructive degree … but of course it was they who coined that phrase. They are naturally entitled, because They can inform the greater parasites on which group of “little people” will “need” to get the chop next the better to insulate the parasites from reality, They are Experts, after all.

    Whether enough of us will wake up to the deeply malign effect of the layers of these creatures and do something about them before they have utterly destroyed our world, economy and society remains to be seen. The evidence, regrettably, isn’t encouraging.

    [Declaration of interest: I am an opinionated thinker. On the plus side, I come pretty cheap, and you can always tell me to #### off without risk to your livelihood, as many do. Thank you.]

  36. Beware the self proclaimed EXPERT.
    Definition of expert
    : X (maths) =unknown number.
    : SPERT (hydraulics) =drip under pressure.

    Therefore an EXPERT is nothing more than a DRIP UNDER PRESSURE OF UNKNOWN QUANTITY.

    Regards
    S.T.Beare

  37. I predict, if this Commission is created, it will be an extension of the IPCC, but with police powers and an unlimited budget. Doubting CAGW will become a crime against humanity.

  38. To the left the solution to everything is more regulation leading to bigger goverment. That of course is the point of it all in the first place. The Australians have a Department of Climate change and Energy Efficiency ( I am sure it used to be Water) The first minister for that post was Penny Wong being the minister of Climate Change and Water. You would think that such a minister would have a science degree, yes, no she is a lawyer and a unionist. I note that people who work for that department have some real problems; mainly related to the fact that all their friends think they have a stupid useless job.Staff morale is so low the government has spent almost $175,000 on consultants to lift staff’s flagging spirits. A negative public image of the department, changing environmental policies and lack of internal support had left them feeling miserable and disengaged, an internal report has found. The next one of course will be the “Department of Co2, Sustainability and Policing Solutions.” All of this of course is just a huge waste of taxpayers money.

  39. Since they are losing the science debate, they moved on to the social science through ad hoc polls and papers (Bain, Lew, Manne…) and they keep erasing history and those who did object to the faulty science (Wikipedia). Meanwhile Reuters and friends are pushing the idea of carbon trading through fear mongering articles in their newspapers. Basically they go for the jugular: it could be -15C in summer that they’d blame it on Global Warming as long as the cash in their carbon taxes and make their commissions on trade.
    The game is simply displaced to another battlefield and the prospect of a Obama second term is bolstering their resolve. I anticipate more totalitarian moves and soon… Boot camps are closer than we think because they are in a hurry to establish and run their scam.

  40. If it didn’t already exist and they were talking about forming The National Weather Service, I’d say, OK. But the NSW already exist. We can’t control the weather or the climate. What would it’s purpose be?
    These Weather Commisars would be doing more than advising a senator to bring an umbrella.

  41. “…………leveraging weather expertise ………..”

    What can be leveraged from a 3-day forecast that has less than 50% of being right. This is empire building at its worst.

  42. “harnessed” Controlled and directed by a bureaucracy? Clearly the best way to take advantage of knowledge and researchers and human ingenuity.

    Not.

  43. I have a solution for them. Take all the weather/climate offices of every department of the federal government and put them into the National Weather Service and put a practicing Meteorologist in charge. Then fire all the redundant functions, putting the resulting savings of salary into a top notch surface monitoring network and making sure the satellite network is robust enough to take a failure or two without melting down. We would probably save 20 billion a year and have 10 times the capability/

  44. Adding to my last: then make all the raw unadjusted data and metadata available publicly for researchers to analyze. That way we always have the original data to compare adjustments to and the metadata to evaluate whether those adjustments make any sense, but the original data will always be pristine as collected.

  45. WASHINGTON, D.C. — With the U.S. economy vulnerable to weather events costing billions of dollars, an expert panel today asked Congress to create the first U.S. Weather Commission. The commission would provide guidance to policymakers on leveraging weather expertise across government and the private sector to better protect lives and businesses.
    =============
    I understand the need to create jobs, at any cost.
    But, “leveraging”, is a step too far.
    Just you watch.

  46. Does the name of the source/reference make you wonder?

    National Center for Atmospheric Research/University Corporation for Atmospheric Research

    Do we really need another paid layer of policy making?

    … _ _ _ … !

  47. “Experts call on Congress..” What experts? Experts in bigger government and breaking the back of the producer?

    “The U.S. Weather Commission offers the promise of better research, state-of-the-art prediction, and protection for the health and prosperity of the U.S.,” HA HA HA

    I am a writer. I think my next Sci Fi will be titled “Men in CO2″

  48. Of course this Weather Commission is necessary–all of you are emitters of CO2, aren’t you?

    They need this commission and thousands of new bureaucrats to keep track of you–and if they figure your pollution can’t be justified, well then “pfft” with you.

    /sarc

  49. We’ll have to ask the Chinese if it is a good enough idea for them to fund it. As we don’t have any money and the Chinese Credit Card is getting full (net US Bond buying by Chinese is dropping off) it will take “Other People’s Money” to fund it; and the folks with the money are in China…

    We’re at over $16,000,000,000,000.00 of debt and adding over $1 Trillion / year (last I looked, about $1.4 Trillion). Europe is in worse condition and Japan has about twice that debt to GDP ratio. Africa is, and always has been, flat broke. Latin America? Not exactly rolling in dough.

    So just WHO is going to pay for the government we have now? Forget adding any new parts.

    The party is over. The Fat Lady is clearing her pipes and the orchestra has started up in Spain and Greece. There is no money and what’s worse there will be LESS money going forward. We’re in a cycle of economic decline and we will stay in it for decades. (Why? First off, a “demographic bomb” is going off. “Demographics is destiny” and we’re pretty much stuck with the Baby Boomers leaving work to become a retired drag on the economy. Second, our “social welfare” state has driven whole industries to “Go Galt” and either shutdown or pack up and move to China.)

    Nothing will change the demographics. Nothing short of a cultural / social revolution against creeping Socialism will change the economic trends, and the cultural shift is toward MORE Socialism, not less. We’re toast. It’s just a question of how long it takes to flood the boilers and have the whole ship of state blow up.

    BTW, the Lefty Answer of “Raise Tax Rates!” won’t work. You get about 18% of GDP as tax revenue, no matter what the tax RATE. We’re in the land of the Laffer Curve and wiggling the rates higher will NOT increase revenues. It DOES decrease the Domestic Product, so you get less tax revenue (though the percent stays about 18%, it is from a smaller GDP).

    “Improved weather information can be an engine for economic growth,” says panelist William Gail, co-founder and chief technology officer of the Global Weather Corporation. “As we develop increasingly detailed understanding of our atmosphere, there is enormous potential for helping the public and businesses.”

    The only ‘economic growth’ to come from this will be growth in their income from a government contract. That will be offset by larger economic LOSS elsewhere as the damage done by taxes or debt (pick either one… same effect) shuts down other business. All I see here is someone bleating after a government teat to latch onto.

    What we need is a wholesale pruning of commissions, agencies, and even whole departments. I got a dandy public education BEFORE there was a Federal Department Of Education, as just one example. Education has gone steadily down hill the more it has been Federalized. If the entire Fed Dept. of Education were eliminated, public education would improve (as we have an existence proof in the history). There are many such departments…

    FWIW, I’d put things like the National Science Foundation in that group as well. Science was better before it became a politically driven money suck. Oh, and UN “Dues” can go as well. The UN does nothing worth preserving. If the rest of the world wants to pay for it, let them.

    Or maybe we can just send those bills to the Chinese… it’s their money being spent anyway…

  50. E.M.Smith says:
    The party is over.

    E.M. Smith nails it. In fact, exactly the same set of facts and logic apply to just about every other noble cause in the public sector.

    It’s far more scary than global warming. Our social institutions are failing. We keep throwing more and more money at them and they keep failing faster and faster. The fit is on a collision course with the shan.

  51. … and its inevitable enforcement arm, the Weather Security Agency… to give you a little “freedom pat” if you should try to look out the window to observe the weather for yourself…

  52. I’m just wondering out load here … but, what limits does the US federal govt place on private ‘operations’ in the area of weather, and in this case, I’m thinking ‘active weather modification’.

    A couple of us are wont to initiate a thunderstorm (convective thundershower) when conditions are preventing same from occurring because of a capping (Cin or Cinh) inversion … it only takes breaking the ‘cap’ via one of two ways, via a properly unstable ‘airmass’ that is more buoyant than the capping layer, or, by forcing the lower layer airmass through the cap via an artificially-produced vortex originating at the surface using say, several surplus high-bypass turbo-fan jet engines canted upwards at an angle …

    Just thinking out loud here; what would the liability be if such an initiated thunderstorm turned Tornadic and did property damage?

    .

  53. Backyard runup and idle power test of a Rolls-Royce RB211-22B turbofan engine suitable for creating the project of creating a ground-based vortex for convective T-storm initiation.

    It took two “air starters” to light this thing off, and the power level she was run up to was only idle; note the tree movement to the rear:

    MAKE SURE YOUR SPEAKERS ARE TURNED APPROPRIATELY LOW: THIS IS A REAL TURBOFAN ENGINE AND THE SOUND IS FULL-SPECTRUM!!!

    .

  54. Another government crap program to waste more millions [at first, anyway]; more know nothing bureaucrats sucking up more of the nations GDP.

    If there is a true lack of good weather prediction and advice, all they need to do is contract with Bastardi and a couple of his cohorts.

  55. “Improved weather information can be an engine for economic growth,” says panelist William Gail, co-founder and chief technology officer of the Global Weather Corporation. “As we develop increasingly detailed understanding of our atmosphere, there is enormous potential for helping the public and businesses.”

    I cannot believe anyone is talking about this kind of stuff right now. If they fail to address the fiscal cliff the only economy we will soon have left is credit and debt. Tax-mageddon will cripple everything that presently isn’t credit & debt much worse than it already is.;

  56. Pork and Power grabbing. Guess what, people who need highly accurate weather forecasting already pay for it. For example, grain traders have their own forecasting providers. Oil companies with platforms and rigs in the gulf also contract for it. No need for the government. These private companies compete to provide the best forecasting service at the lowest price. Joe Bastardi is already doing this through weather bell.

  57. “….. the commission would advise federal policymakers on setting priorities for improving forecasts and creating a more weather-proof nation.”
    55555555
    I think they should set up a commission to decide whether to set up a commisiion to consider whether to create a commisiion to “weather-proof the nation”. They actually mean climate not weather. Except if they say climate everyone will laugh at them. This smells like yet another scam to siphon tax payers’ money into the pockets of rogues and scoundrels.

  58. “leveraging weather expertise across government and the private sector to better protect lives and businesses.”

  59. Of course we need a ‘weather commission’
    The National Weather Service is totally unable of do whatever it is the new WC can do.
    I like the idea of hiring Al Gore to head this new and flexible group. Hey, maybe Obama can give them a cabinet position. We could add a rule that the only laws enforced will be ones that Al Gore says are ok and the UN approves.
    WMO, UN, EPA, NWS, NAS, NSF, GWC, NOAA, NASA, UCAR, NCAR, throw in NASCAR and I think we’ll be close to having enough input to make a highly paid for, clear and well positioned decision. We could ask GE, ELF, WWF, Greenpeace, California, and China for direction, too.
    That should fix everything.
    /sarc off

    What a dumb idea.
    Whose idea was this , anyway?
    “What a maroon. What an ignoramitus.”
    Mr. B. Bunny

    cn

  60. Oh, silly me. I just realized he didn’t write this article: you did about his work. Still, it would be helpful in general.

  61. The first choice of every bureaucrat — create a new commission. This is pointless. The most important obvious thing the US federal government could do to reduce weather-related property damage is to stop the federal flood insurance program, which encourages development in areas which flood regularly. Let the private insurance market set a price based on realistic risk appraisal. If that’s too expensive, then don’t develop there.

    Second, changes in residential construction techniques (pneumatic framing nailers) have made residential structures significantly more vulnerable to catastrophic failure in high winds. Building code revisions to require better fasteners (already available) would make new construction much sturdier while adding less to the total cost than complying with “water saving” toilet requirements.

    Third, most US residential power distribution is by aerial lines which a vulnerable to tree damage in high winds. And the more “environmentally conscious” the community the more they resist proactive tree triming by the power utilities. Amazingly these are precisely the areas most affected by storm-induced power loss and the most vocal in insisting that “somebody” do “something” about it. Either spend the money for underground distribution lines or trim trees and remove diseased ones near power lines.

    There are other fairly simple and not not very expensive measures which would reduce weather-induced damages. No commission is needed.

  62. The folks who used to be CAGW dons need a place to go to maintain their image, prestige and salary. I am sure the commission will be much like the Weather Channel now that NBC owns it, 90 percent reality shows, 10 percent weather, and never about where I live except for the local weather on the 8’s. Of course, its not bad to not be mentioned in the weather since only places with bad, news catching weather incidents are covered.

  63. There are two pluses that I can think of: it is cheaper than going to war (vested interests have to pork out somewhere and it offers at least some potential to allow NASA and NOAA to get on with their real jobs.

    @Owen – you nailed it. Thanks.

    The major danger seems to be creating entities with statutory powers. In South Africa they have a job and training killing NHBRC created to please the banking sector. They were only a nuisance until they became a statutory body answering to themselves.

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