Whitestown Revisited – a weather benchmark location for the Corn Belt

Guest essay by David Archibald

Readers may recall a previous WUWT article where I examined growing conditions experienced in the Corn Belt over the last 30 years with Growing Degree Days (GDD), using Whitestown, Indiana as a data point. This article revisits and updates those calculations.

It is the time of the year that farmers in the Corn Belt start thinking about getting their crop in. Conditions for planting are less than ideal at the moment though with a lot of ground frozen or waterlogged:

Figure 1: April 3rd in North Iowa


Figure 2: Rain-soaked fields behind afternoon storms in East-Central Illinois

And models are predicting another blizzard to come through:

Figure 3: ECMWF Model of 850 millibar wind speed, showing a strong low pressure center advecting cold air from Canada into the central USA.

Figure 3 is from Ryan Maue who notes on Twitter:

“So, does winter end anytime soon? ECMWF 12z has a massive blizzard that would make January jealous in the upper Midwest in 9-days. Of course, that’s too far away for accurate prediction but worth highlighting that winter isn’t done — at all.”

Now that the Modern Warm Period is over and we are going back to levels of solar activity typical of the 19th century, it is apposite to look at what the climate was like then and how a return to 19th century-type climate will impact on agriculture.

Figure 4: Whitestown, Indiana Average Daily Minima for Decades 1900 – 1910 and 2000 to 2010


What Figure 4 shows is that a century ago daily temperature minima during the planting season were three weeks behind what farmers experienced last decade. What is also interesting is that in the 1900 to 1910 decade there was a pronounced dip in temperatures in February. Last decade the dip was reduced and came forward by a fortnight.

Figure 5: Whitestown, Indiana Cumulative GDD from 27th April to First Frost


Corn growth responds to heat. The concept of Growing Degree Days (GDD) captures that by taking 50°F from the average daily temperature. For example a daily maximum of 76°F with a minimum of 54°F produces an average of 65°F. Take 50°F from 65°F gives a result of 15 GDD for that day. Corn varieties have been bred to maximise productivity from recent climatic conditions and require 2,500 GDD to reach maturity.

Figure 5 shows that last decade corn crops could get to 2,500 GDD by mid to late August. A century ago maturity mightn’t be reached until the end of September. Normal first frost date for Whitestown is 10th October but 110 years ago the first frost was on 3rd September, ending growth for the season. Last decade averaged 177 days between the last spring frost and the first fall frost. In the first decade of the 20th century, the average number of days between these frost events was 147.

Figure 6: Crop Progress and Condition for Corn in Indiana

The USDA provides a wonderful service following the state of crops in the Corn Belt, by state. If planting is delayed by waterlogged fields then farmers may elect to plant a lower-yielding crop that requires fewer GDD to reach maturity. If planting is so delayed that corn is out of consideration, then the fields may be left fallow or a short-growing-season crop such as rye might be substituted.

This year another factor has entered into farmers’ decision-making with China announcing a 25% tariff on US soybeans.

Figure 7: US and Brazilian Soybean Exports and Chinese Imports 1964 – 2017

Processed through China’s 400 million pigs, that country’s soybean imports provide 20% of their minimum protein requirement. As Figure 7 shows, China’s soybean imports take most of combined US and Brazilian exports. For US growers there is a price and fertiliser cost trade-off between growing corn and growing soybeans. The Chinese tariff would encourage a switch from soybeans to corn, if they can get a crop into the ground.

David Archibald is the author of American Gripen: The Solution to the F-35 Nightmare.


0 0 votes
Article Rating
Newest Most Voted
Inline Feedbacks
View all comments
April 5, 2018 10:39 am

Now, this is a truly corny article if there ever was one.
More seriously, 1901-1910 was the bottom of the AMO at the time and 2001-2010 was the top of the AMO at the time. I would expect more growing days at the top. 1935-1945 might be a better comparison decade.

Reply to  ShrNfr
April 5, 2018 11:28 am

Absolutely. It is entirely possible that much of the recent warming was the result of the up-side of the PDO and AMO oceanic cycles. And both should be on their way back down….

Reply to  ralfellis
April 5, 2018 12:29 pm


April 5, 2018 10:48 am

Winter is coming. …
1932 dust bowl drought starts
1932 +87= 2019

Reply to  Henryp
April 5, 2018 11:31 am

If temperatures are following PDO and AMO cycles, then this is more like a 65-year cycle.
1935 + 65 = 2000 as the peak of the warm cycle
(The 1930s were warm, not cool.)

John harmsworth
Reply to  Henryp
April 5, 2018 1:36 pm

Last year in our part of Western Canada, which is a big area, was the driest in one hundred years. We will need fairly copious rains to manage decent crops this year. Also, we have been 10-20C below average for about the last month and a half. We need approximately 90 frost free days here to get a crop in and off and we often get barely that. Frost in late May and late August is not unusual. I expect large areas of Russia nad the Ukraine are similar with the North central U.S. not too far behind and subject to the same large variations in weather that can bring a sharp frost out of the North in short order.
Combined, these areas grow a hell of a lot of food for the world and have had very good growing conditions for about 20 years now, with the added benefit that Russia has thrown out Communism and even totalitarian dictatorship is superior to Communism as an economic platform. But if the world gets even a little colder a lot of people could go hungry.

Alfred (Cairns)
Reply to  John harmsworth
April 6, 2018 5:59 am

“totalitarian dictatorship”
The current Russian president got 76% of the vote in a big turnout. Please leave the insults to the mainstream media – they are much better at it.

Reply to  John harmsworth
April 6, 2018 8:40 am

I agree, except I read mr. harmsworth not as saying that the current Russian leader is a dictator, but rather as saying that Communism is so bad as an economic platform that [any] totalitarian regime is better. I could be wrong, of course. I hope I’m not.

Reply to  John harmsworth
April 6, 2018 10:34 am

Not hard to get 76% of the vote when you control all major media outlets (TV, radio, newspapers) and those on the internet who criticize the government tend to die young or disappear.

Reply to  John harmsworth
April 6, 2018 10:51 am

Not to mention jailing or outlawing any political opposition that gets too powerful.

Reply to  John harmsworth
April 8, 2018 1:47 am

Not hungry, very hungry

April 5, 2018 10:59 am

We have a forecast low of 19 F in Wichita on Saturday morning, expected to beat the 2009 record of 21. Record high for that day, 91F set in 1890. Someday maybe we can stop “killing” the planet and get back to those good ole days when heat waves didn’t exist. /s

Reply to  RWturner
April 5, 2018 12:46 pm

Record 13 deg F on April 4th beating previous record set in 1899 for Omaha NE. More to come.

Stephen Wilde
April 5, 2018 11:01 am

Yes, and it is all related to solar induced jet stream meridionality and global cloudiness.
Places like the Corn Belt and Western Europe find themselves north of the middle latitude jet stream tracks more often and for longer when the sun is less active.
Since around 2000, meridionality has been increasing with increased global cloudiness so that less solar energy is entering the oceans.
La Nina events should shortly dominate relative to El Nino events and global temperatures will slowly shift from the current pause to actual cooling, unless the sun gets more active and the jets more zonal with decreasing global cloudiness again.
Just watch the jet stream tracks. They give us a couple of decades notice of forthcoming climate zone shifting.

Mike Maguire
Reply to  Stephen Wilde
April 6, 2018 9:44 am

You have been saying this for years but your theory actually makes good meteorological sense(at least to me).
Observations of the atmosphere and jet stream since 2000 seem to support this also.
The much stronger -AO and -NAO values in the last decade are also a feature with more meridional flow. This was responsible for all the N’oreasters recently.
Will this offset greenhouse gas warming? Maybe the pause(slow down) resulted from a balance between this effect’s cooling and previous warming in the 80’s/90’s?
Climate science might give your theory more weighting if it was being completely open minded/objective. I like your theory.
If there is anything to it, then violent tornadoes will increase again. The risk is elevated this Spring from the current pattern.
The longer that cold lingers in the northern US and contrasts with warmth to the south(which is inevitable from the more powerful sun getting higher in the sky) usually the bigger the contrast and the stronger the jet stream between them.
This is an ingredient in the recipe for severe weather/strong tornadoes.
2011 was an example of this, with several outbreaks of violent tornadoes in contrast to the lack of tornado outbreaks in recent decades.
Of course the jet stream can still be pretty far south and still take on a configuration that keeps cool stable air from clashing with warm humid air like it did in 2011………or suddenly shift 2,000 miles north with a weather pattern change with areas in between the before and after not ever having it roar thru.

April 5, 2018 11:12 am

“Now that the Modern Warm Period is over…”
I’m curious about how you define the Modern Warm Period, and thus how you define it as “over.”

John harmsworth
Reply to  Joe
April 5, 2018 1:41 pm

Our most recent warm period ran from about June to August 2017.

Reply to  John harmsworth
April 6, 2018 5:17 am

But you’re not in Florida….

April 5, 2018 11:50 am

Corn and soybean crops are most often rotated here in Indiana. Soybeans naturally return most of the nitrogen to the soil that corn crops need thus cutting fertilizer expense.
I view the press on China targeting US farm produce/products with their tariffs as pretty much hype. China NEEDS it and they aren’t going to get enough of it without buying considerable quantities from the US most years. In the end if China really foolish enough to get into an escalating trade war with the US they’ll lose big time.
It would seem to me that a better indicator of climate effects on crop plantings and yields would be to track how soybean planting and yields are doing further north out of the corn belt. During the 80’s and 90’s a lot of acreage in S. Dakota once dedicated to wheat was changed over to soybeans. Tracking the soybean yields in S. Dakota would be more revealing I think.

Reply to  RAH
April 5, 2018 4:05 pm

That includes South Dakota soybeans – has a long season.

Reply to  RAH
April 6, 2018 11:34 am

This is actually a myth. Most of the nitrogen the soy plant produces is harvested in the bean. That is where the protein comes from — nitrogen. Crop rotation is done for weed and pest control. Corn requires a lot of nitrogen even after a previous soy crop.

Reply to  JamesD
April 6, 2018 11:51 am

JamesD it is not a myth. Rhizobium bacteria fixate nitrogen from the atmosphere for the soy plant.
Also: “The application of N fertilizer to a soybean crop is not recommended”

April 5, 2018 11:59 am

As I look at Figure 4, I am struck with the question/thought that….those old temperature records were adjusted down and the current temperatures were adjusted up….what use is that data anymore?

Reply to  GaelanClark
April 5, 2018 4:08 pm

People say the say thing about the solar record – being adjusted up and down all the time. That is why some of us rely upon the stuff that was recorded in good faith. That is why we use the old data – before the time of the adjustments.

Pamela Gray
Reply to  archibaldperth
April 5, 2018 7:07 pm

If you are using old data, you are using adjusted data that was variously weighted at different times (different solar scientists at different times would take the drawings or the telescope view and add or subtract various amounts to account for the size of spots). The reconstructed data removes the added various weighting values and recalibrates the reconstructed counts with actual solar drawings of sun spots. Are you using the old apples and oranges data because it supports a biased a priori belief?

April 5, 2018 12:48 pm

lts the NH “snow belt” which is the weather benchmark l will be watching this spring. A well above the trend line snow extent this spring. Would be a early sign that the 50 year decline in the NH spring snow extent is drawing to a halt. The climate will have a hard time warming if there is a extending spring snow extent.

Dr. Bob
April 5, 2018 12:52 pm

Hopefully this analysis was done on raw data. I never trust data that has been processed in any way. There are way to many ways to ruin a database by post-processing, so always go back to the source if at all possible.

Bob Hoye
April 5, 2018 12:57 pm

Hi Joe
My take would be that the Modern Warm Period (MWP) was associated with the high solar activity that reached its best in the 1940s to 1980s.This was the highest in thousands of years. Solar activity has been declining since. In the 1990s, solar physicists, Penn and Livingston, using studies of the Sun’s internal dynamics, concluded that a long decline in solar activity was possible. The other way to have made the call was by using the approximate 200-year cycle.
SS 23 and 24 have been the weakest in a hundred years and are not that far away from the lows reached during the Dalton Minimum some 200 years ago. Spotless Days for this year are running at 57 percent, a big jump from last year’s rate.
I think it OK to consider that the MWP is ending.

Reply to  Bob Hoye
April 6, 2018 10:56 am

“My take would be that the Modern Warm Period (MWP) was associated with the high solar activity that reached its best in the 1940s to 1980s.”
Are you defining a “warm” period by solar activity rather than by warmth? If so, it seems unwise, especially since your assertion that it “reached its best in the 1940s to 1980s” correlates with generally decreasing temperatures in the major temperature datasets.
“SS 23 and 24 have been the weakest in a hundred years”
Could you provide more support for this. I did not think cycle 23 was much different than cycle 20 (which coincidentally occurred in the middle of the time period you described as being associated with the Modern Warm Period).
“Spotless Days for this year are running at 57 percent, a big jump from last year’s rate.”
Isn’t this just what you expect during the approach to solar minimum in the normal 11ish-year solar cycle? Does this in any way signal an end to a “Modern Warm Period”?

April 5, 2018 1:18 pm

I grew up in the corn belt. I can say they grow lots of corn there. When I go back I am constantly amazed.
To me you can go back and look at isotope ratios, etc. to deduce what the climate was during a particular time, but the running history of an area also provides great insights. For example people skating on the Thames during the winter or stories of people living in Greenland is a great example of these correlations. The length of the growing season is definitely another and looking at benchmark location over time provides tons of information. Great essay and thanks for presenting this.
Down here in the South we double crop with the earlier last frosts and later first frosts giving us enough consecutive frost free days to get two crops to maturity (winter wheat being the exception as it isn’t that dependent on the last frost date). It would be a pretty big economic hit if this stops due to a much shorter growing season. Also not a good thing if the US stops exporting literally tons and tons of grain.

Reply to  rbabcock
April 5, 2018 2:37 pm

You can double or triple here in the corn belt too depending on what your growing. The guy behind my house got 3 cuttings of hay last summer. Normal is two.

April 5, 2018 1:19 pm

if China really foolish enough to get into an escalating trade war with the US.
There is a way to prevent a trade war, while at the same time solving the trade imbalance. Set the tariff surplus each year equal to the trade surplus less tariff surplus.
Set: US Tarrif = Chinese trade Surplus + Chinese Tarrifs
So for example, the Chinese trade surplus last year was 275 billion. The US should in 2018 add 275 billion in tariffs over and above Chinese tariffs, to balance the trade. Otherwise, over time China and the US will end up in conflict, similar to what happened to England and China and the Opium Wars.
The US should announce this as a matter of policy and make it automatic, so that if China “retaliates”, whatever they add will thus be automatically added to US tariff rates. By making this automatic, there is no room to try and call the other countries bluff by escalation.
The US could apply this to all countries, even those where the US has a surplus. In that case, the US should be paying the surplus in increased tariffs, rather than collecting tariffs. Because, in the end, unless trade is balanced there is a huge incentive for countries to manipulate the trade for advantage, which historically leads to corruption and conflict.

John harmsworth
Reply to  ferdberple
April 5, 2018 1:55 pm

I don’t think I like your idea, Ferd. Trade imbalances are not fundamentally bad. They reflect differences in productivity and natural advantages. If I have all the unneedium and you can’t run your economy without it, it doesn’t make much sense to put a tariff on your importations. Most of the distortions can actually be traced to “artificial demand” caused by nations borrowing to inflate their economies by “creating demand”.
Much of the trillions that the U.S. has borrowed has enriched other countries, especially China, by enabling excess demand and inflating costs for domestic production. Trade deficits are very much the result of lousy economic management. Cut spending, cut borrowing, hack out an ugly recession and there will be price control and much, much less buying of foreign products. Problem is, the horse is out and no politicians have the guts to tell us this would be good for us. Also, we as citizens no longer seem to be interested in making sacrifices for the good of the whole. We are barely nations anymore. It is the Age of Cynicism.

Reply to  John harmsworth
April 6, 2018 9:07 am

“Nations” are a surprisingly recent invention; I might hazard Napoleon Bonaparte as the father of the concept. If we look at the political affiliations of, say, an English baron even as late as Elizabeth I (maybe even later), he might owe fealty both to the crown of England and to the Duke of Aquitaine. It could get really complex.
Who do you consider “your” people? If you were a citizen of Nowheria, would you stand up for another Nowherian even if he were monstrously corrupt, just because he was a fellow citizen, or would you sort “your” people by some other metric?
Nations have been an interesting experiment. I wonder if I will live long enough to get even a glimpse of what we’ll try next.

Reply to  John harmsworth
April 6, 2018 10:56 am

Saudi Arabia’s attempt to provide welfare for everyone is cracking under it’s own weight.
During the recent drop in energy prices they had to drastically cut into their reserves in order to avoid big cuts in spending.
They aren’t going to be able to do it much longer.

Reply to  ferdberple
April 5, 2018 2:07 pm

The trade deficit is caused by the budget deficit. It is impossible to get rid of the first until you get rid of the second.
The reason is simple. A trade deficit results in US dollars piling up overseas. This surplus of US dollars in the international market then causes the value of the US dollar to fall, which in turns causes the price of US goods to fall in relation to other currencies.
This drop in the value of the US dollar eliminates the trade deficit.
As long as we have a budget deficit, foreign countries can get rid of excess US dollars by buying US Treasuries. As a result the value of the dollar doesn’t fall.
BTW, the so called currency manipulation that China and other countries have been accused of is nothing more than those countries changing how many Treasuries they buy in order to keep their currency in a desired range.

Reply to  MarkW
April 5, 2018 2:34 pm

Tax cuts in past have paid for themselves by increased receipts thanks to an expanded economy. I’ll grant that it will be hard for businesses to grow enough to overcome a trillion dollar annual deficit, but we’ll see.

Reply to  MarkW
April 5, 2018 2:48 pm

Taxes haven’t been cut to zero because too many people have become too reliant on the government.
Both JFK’s and Reagan’s tax cuts paid for themselves. Unfortunately, in both cases Congress kept spending even more than the increase in tax receipts.

Reply to  MarkW
April 5, 2018 2:54 pm

BTW I live only about 41 miles east of Whitestown. Pass by the place all the time when driving on I-65 going and coming from places to the north like the Chicago area.

Reply to  MarkW
April 5, 2018 2:57 pm

Below is the current state of affairs, a quick global fix may be on the way.
China is not the problem, the Federal Reserve is the USA’s biggest problem, always has been, always will be.
Regardscomment image

Reply to  MarkW
April 5, 2018 3:26 pm

Economist Arthur Laffer helped popularize the idea that the revenue effects of tax changes depend on taxpayers’ response. Figure 1 shows a hypothetical Laffer curve that tracks how revenues depend on the tax rate.
A Hypothetical Laffer Curve
We should expect that revenues would be very low when tax rates are close to either zero or 100 percent. At some point in between—65 percent in this hypothetical—revenues peak.
That much is uncontroversial. Debates often arise, however, about the shape of the Laffer curve and where on the curve current tax rates fall.

Reply to  MarkW
April 5, 2018 4:10 pm

The point of the Laffer Curve is that optimal taxation is somewhere between rates of zero and 100%, which shows that your hypothetical zero is a reductio ad absurdum which signifies nothing.
The Kansas case is not relevant. Its neighboring states also experienced a slowdown in the growth of disposable income after 2012, so that negative outcome can’t be blamed on the tax cuts.

Reply to  MarkW
April 5, 2018 4:25 pm

The curve applies to the whole receipt-producing taxation system, not its effects on individuals.
Confiscation also isn’t a viable means of financing government. Once everything has been taken, you run out of OPM.
Nor can a regime provide welfare for everyone. Somebody has to produce wealth before it can be redistributed.

Reply to  MarkW
April 5, 2018 6:04 pm

It’s fair to criticize the Laffer curve as unproven. However, it is a perfectly reasonable concept to keep in mind during tax discussing.
The problem i have is that it is incomplete. It should never be the case that tax levels are set solely based on extracting the maximum revenue from society. A tax cut may cause a revenue decrease short term and may not be fully counterbalanced by future tax revenue, and that is perfectly fine. One must also consider the benefit to individual taxpayers over both the short and long term.
Bill Gates and other philanthropists are making a large impact on the world Auth their wealth. It’s sad to think that all their wealth is dwarfed by the interest we pay every year on all the debt that has been run up through reckless overspending all these years. And then some dare blame the taxpayers for not being generous enough.
Health care policy is perhaps the best example, where US taxpayers actually pay more per capita for government health care spending than anywhere else on earth, yet when politicians talk about health care reform they always say they need even more money to do something. The taxpayers already did more than enough, the tax spenders are the ones always botching things.

Reply to  MarkW
April 5, 2018 6:34 pm

Oh, and by the end of the Bush administration the country entered in to a serious recession

That recession was caused by democrat political power in the Senate 2004 and House 2006 elections in raising gasoline prices to 4.00 per gallon in 2007 (to “fight global warming!” – just in time to break the housing loan bubble (created by democrat political pressure on loans) and financial re-lending bubbles to blow up – just before the November 2008 elections.

Reply to  MarkW
April 5, 2018 6:37 pm

“Nor can a regime provide welfare for everyone.”

Chimp, ever been to Saudi Arabia?

What? Saudi uses their oil revenues – from their forced taxes on every barrel withdrawn to (1) pay their tribal and childish fancies and (2) pay their rich citizen even more (3) then pay their poorest and their indentured slaves sub-living wages.
None of the three are “welfare” – which IS impossible to sustain without such CAGW-causing oil revenues.

Reply to  MarkW
April 5, 2018 7:02 pm

Congressional actions restricted exploration and development and expansion across the US lands, drastically reducing supplies and allowing foreign prices to be raised = Higher prices domestically. Bush did nothing to stop these changes, and – instead and also in the name of “fighting global warming” – encouraged them = higher prices = failing economies.

Reply to  MarkW
April 5, 2018 7:04 pm

A government (kingdom) that “sells” oil is “taxing” the oil produced by the companies actually extracting the oil, as a price of doing business with that kingdom.

Reply to  MarkW
April 5, 2018 8:00 pm

Why should I pretend Bush does not share the specific blame for their 2007-2008 depression with Pelosi and Reid – and their millions of federal Deep State bureacrats and academia minions that pushed the CAGW agenda needed to destroy the economy, but empower and enrich their futures?

Reply to  MarkW
April 5, 2018 8:46 pm

Please don’t forget to include the wonderful financial engineers that bundled subprime mortgages with good ones in CDO’s

Yeah – The democrat donors, investment bankers, wall street brokers, politically connected K street companies. The same ones pushing their 15-31 trillion carbon futures trading schemes based on CAGW. The CDO/mortgage re-bundling used their politic demands for bad loan acceptance (mortgages) from racist organizers to break the sub-prime market into other “securities”. That Ponzi scheme worked as long as ALL markets and stocks were rising.
With oil prices near-doubling, the drooping 2007-2008 economy could not prop up the broken sub-prime “investors” – with a falling economy, the marginal sub-prime owners (people in the houses/apartments/condo’s) could not make their payments. Everything broke – due to the liberal politicians (largely but not exclusively democrats) in Washington who demanded those policies.

Reply to  MarkW
April 5, 2018 10:16 pm

McConnell? Not then.
I said “liberal” not “repubbie” ! Trent Lott was “almost” a conservative, and thus had to be removed by the Washington establishment.
Daschle stole the leadership position as soon as the defectors could be turned in 2001, so Bush (as poor and as liberal as he was) never had effective control. Pelosi (taking charge in 2006) was more effective in her role as an extremist liberal chasing the CAGW destructive process.

87th Congress (1961-1963) 	Mike Mansfield (D-MT) 	Everett M. Dirksen (R-IL)
88th Congress (1963-1965) 	Mike Mansfield (D-MT) 	Everett M. Dirksen (R-IL)
89th Congress (1965-1967) 	Mike Mansfield (D-MT) 	Everett M. Dirksen (R-IL)
90th Congress (1967-1969) 	Mike Mansfield (D-MT) 	Everett M. Dirksen (R-IL)
91th Congress (1969-1971) 	Mike Mansfield (D-MT) 	Everett M. Dirksen (R-IL)
92nd Congress (1971-1973) 	Mike Mansfield (D-MT) 	Hugh D. Scott, Jr. (R-PA)
93rd Congress (1973-1975) 	Mike Mansfield (D-MT) 	Hugh D. Scott, Jr. (R-PA)
94th Congress (1975-1977)[19] 	Mike Mansfield (D-MT) 	Hugh D. Scott, Jr. (R-PA)
95th Congress (1977-1979)[20] 	Robert C. Byrd (D-WV) 	Howard H. Baker, Jr. (R-TN)
96th Congress (1979-1981) 	Robert C. Byrd (D-WV) 	Howard H. Baker, Jr. (R-TN)
97th Congress (1981-1983) 	Howard H. Baker (R-TN) 	Robert C. Byrd (D-WV)
98th Congress (1983-1985) 	Howard H. Baker (R-TN) 	Robert C. Byrd (D-WV)
99th Congress (1985-1987) 	Robert Dole (R-KS)[22] 	Robert C. Byrd (D-WV)
100th Congress (1987-1989) 	Robert C. Byrd (D-WV) 	Robert Dole (R-KS)
101st Congress (1989-1991) 	George Mitchell (D-ME) 	Robert Dole (R-KS)
102nd Congress (1991-1993) 	George Mitchell (D-ME) 	Robert Dole (R-KS)
103rd Congress (1993-1995) 	George Mitchell (D-ME) 	Robert Dole (R-KS)
104th Congress (1995-1997)[26] 	Robert Dole (R-KS) 	Thomas A. Daschle (D-SD)
105th Congress (1997-1999) 	Trent Lott (R-MS) 	Thomas A. Daschle (D-SD)
106th Congress (1999-2001) 	Trent Lott (R-MS) 	Thomas A. Daschle (D-SD)
107th Congress (2001-2003)[27] 	Thomas Daschle (D-SD) 	Trent Lott (R-MS)
108th Congress (2003-2005) 	William Frist (R-TN) 	Thomas A. Daschle (D-SD)[28]
109th Congress (2005-2007) 	William Frist (R-TN) 	Harry M. Reid (D-NV)
110th Congress (2007-2009) 	Harry M. Reid (D-NV) 	Mitch McConnell (R-KY)
111th Congress (2009-2011) 	Harry M. Reid (D-NV) 	Mitch McConnell (R-KY)
112th Congress (2011-2013) 	Harry M. Reid (D-NV) 	Mitch McConnell (R-KY)
113th Congress (2013-2015) 	Harry M. Reid (D-NV) 	Mitch McConnell (R-KY)
114th Congress (2015-2017) 	Mitch McConnell (R-KY) 	Harry M. Reid (D-NV)[30]
115th Congress (2017-2019) 	Mitch McConnell (R-KY) 	Charles E. Schumer (D-NY)
Reply to  MarkW
April 6, 2018 5:25 am

Can we keep this [snip] on a forum for talking about morons instead of on a discussion of growth duration?

Samuel C Cogar
Reply to  MarkW
April 6, 2018 6:33 am

MarkW claimith:

The trade deficit is caused by the budget deficit. It is impossible to get rid of the first until you get rid of the second.

HA, the Dot-com Bubble got rid of the budget deficit in one fell swoop and the “experts” and congresspersons didn’t even see it coming ……. but Bill Clinton was given credit for the 1st Budget Surplus in decades even though he was more surprised that it happened than anyone else.
Tax dollars came flooding into the US Treasury faster than the politicians could spend it.

Reply to  MarkW
April 6, 2018 10:54 am

Richard, Reagan’s tax cuts paid for themselves, the problem was the Democratic congress increased spending by even more.
Bush’s tax cut’s increased revenue, just not by enough to pay for themselves.

Reply to  MarkW
April 6, 2018 10:57 am

“If tax cuts pay for themselves, why haven’t taxes been cut to zero?”
Are you really this stupid, or do you just hope everyone else is?

Reply to  MarkW
April 6, 2018 11:07 am

Chimp, Richard has shown that he isn’t interested in debating the issue.
To him, increasing taxes on other people so that there is more money to spend on him is a good thing and never to be questioned.

Reply to  MarkW
April 6, 2018 11:09 am

Richard, do you believe that a 100% tax rate would bring in more money than a 90% tax rate?

Reply to  MarkW
April 6, 2018 11:11 am

Richard, 1981 was the last Carter budget.

Reply to  MarkW
April 6, 2018 11:12 am

Richard, why do you have to play at being stupid? Are you being paid to make a fool of yourself?

Reply to  MarkW
April 6, 2018 11:14 am

Cogar, your comment doesn’t even address my point, much less refute it.

Samuel C Cogar
Reply to  MarkW
April 7, 2018 6:57 am

MarkW – April 6, 2018 at 11:14 am

Cogar, your comment doesn’t even address my point, much less refute it.

Mark, you should be asking yourself this question instead of asking Richard, to wit:
Richard, why do you have to play at being stupid?
Are you now playing stupid by ignoring what you previously stated, to wit:

The trade deficit is caused by the budget deficit. It is impossible to get rid of the first until you get rid of the second.

Well “DUH”, the Dot-com Bubble got rid of the budget deficit, ….. but getting rid of the budget deficit sure as hell didn’t get rid of the trade deficit, ….. nor did it even slow down its exponential yearly increase.

D. J. Hawkins
Reply to  ferdberple
April 5, 2018 8:04 pm

Richard suffers from invincible ignorance and labors under the delusion that no one will check his claims. I doubt he’s older than 30, else-wise his sense of historical perspective would prevent his making a laughingstock of himself.

Reply to  ferdberple
April 6, 2018 11:15 am

Sequester was outlawed during the Nixon adminstration. Richard is there anything you know that is actually true?

Reply to  ferdberple
April 6, 2018 11:16 am

Richard, D.J. made his point, and very well.
Apparently it went over your head.

Reply to  ferdberple
April 9, 2018 10:04 am

You make very good comments on climate science.
I waited a few days to post this comment,
because I don’t want to tarnish your deserved
good reputation for the hard sciences.
Your April 5 comment on economics,
that steered a lot of future comments to economics,
strongly suggests you should avoid economics
— which is a social science.
Economics is something that has interested me
since getting a Finance MBA in 1977. I have also
written a paid subscription-only economics newsletter
since 1977. The last issue had an article titled:
The Coming Trade War” .
You have presented a proposal that I have never
heard before. You get one point for originality.
You lose one point for the actual proposal !
I predicted Trump would propose $25 to $50
billion of new tariffs on imports of Chinese goods.
A week later he seemed to be favoring $50 billion
— with the Chinese immediately threatening a trade war
from the $50 billion !
You are proposing $275 billion of additional tariffs
on Chinese imports — that’s bound to cause a
much more severe reaction than $50 billion —
making a trade war more likely, not less likely !
The basic economics is that there is no such
thing as a trade surplus or deficit — trade is
always in balance is you count EVERYTHING
— goods, services and financial flows.
The Chinese own over $1 trillion of US
government bonds, at pretty low interest rates,
financed with US dollars they got
from their surplus from trading goods
— so why focus only on goods,
and ignore the money flows
— the Chinese have financed
over $1 trillion of US deficit spending !
We bought inexpensive Chinese products,
which are wonderful bargains for retired
people like me on fixed budgets,
and the Chinese loaned the US government
lots of money.
Here’s the brief summary from the beginning
of my article, The Coming Trade War,
published on March 19, 2018:
Summary: As a libertarian, I favor free trade. But free trade does not exist on this planet. The US has been the least protectionist large economy in the world, and the most open market for imports. The average US tariff on imports is unusually low compared with other nations. The US favors open markets, and we set a decent example, although there have been exceptions. But being the most open market for imports is virtue signaling … it really means other nations are taking advantage of us.
President Trump is an unusual politician. He seems to be doing something ‘professional’ politicians seldom do — he’s attempting to fulfill his pre-election promises. Even promises that could start a trade war. The hysteria over Trump’s 25% steel and 10% aluminum tariffs seemed excessive, in my opinion. Democrats seem to get hysterical after every Trump proposal, as soon as they find a media person with a camera! But a lot of Republicans got hysterical about the tariffs too.
China is the most protectionist large economy in the world. President Trump aims to change that. That’s a worthy goal. But the new steel and aluminum tariffs barely affect China. And the Secretary of Defense said they were not needed for national security, which was the justification claimed by the Commerce Department, in two huge reports.
If we are to risk starting a trade war, our first shot should have been a rifle shot aimed at a specific Chinese barrier to US goods. Instead, we had a 360 degree shotgun blast aimed at everybody in the world, except Canada and Mexico (at least during NAFTA renegotiations, maybe not permanently?).
Trump knows we have something of great value to foreign manufacturers: We control access to the largest market for manufactured goods on the planet — the US. A trade war, even if involving ONLY China and the US, could be serious enough to halt global growth. So far, US investors do not seem to be anticipating a trade war, or they don’t care (but they should).
My economics blog:

April 5, 2018 1:48 pm

Recently planning a holiday in Glacier National Park I found a file on the Park website showing the dates when Driving to the Sun Road was cleared of snow for each year since the 1930’s. It occurred to me this is a kind of proxy for climate in the Rockies. I didn’t do a thorough analysis, but it’s clear from observation that the date has not been getting significantly earlier as you might expect if temperatures are rising and presumably snow clearing machines more effective.

Reply to  BillC
April 5, 2018 3:16 pm

Yes my own 40 year recording of the date of the seasons first snowfall tells much the same story.
Over the last 40 years there has been no signs what’s so ever of any trend in my area of lowland England that the winter’s first snowfall is turning up later in the season.

April 5, 2018 1:49 pm

It has been too wet in eastern OR and WA for wheat ranchers to get into their fields to fertilize. Also too cold for comfort here in the land of endless winter.
I’ll miss the Modern Warm Period.

John harmsworth
Reply to  Chimp
April 5, 2018 2:03 pm

1000 miles N.E. of you and it is snowing today! About 20C below normal. The most ridiculous thing about this AGW crap is that we are supposed to bemoan the possibility of it getting warmer when almost everywhere-warmer is beneficial. If it gets even a little bit colder there may be millions starving in the world. If that happens I vote we swap out one climate scientist for one poor,starving third world soul for every .0001 of a degree drop in temperature. Just think of the savings and increased productivity, let alone the justice of it!
If we run out of climate opportunists I will buy the drinks!

Reply to  Chimp
April 5, 2018 2:46 pm

We had snow here in April. Wouldn’t be surprised to see more.
Hope it never gets as cold as it did when I was a kid in the ’50s and ’60s. I recall snow in June. And 35 below in December 1968.
I’ll really miss the MWP if it in fact is coming to an end.
Sorry about your uncanny cold up there.

D. J. Hawkins
Reply to  Chimp
April 5, 2018 5:17 pm

We had snow on March 20-22 of 7 inches, in New freak’n Jersey! Possible additional snow in 5-10 days.

Reply to  Chimp
April 6, 2018 9:49 am

Possible snow here just south of the Potomac River, in a few days. My forsythia are late.

April 5, 2018 1:52 pm

Where did you get the 275 Billion from? The trade surplus last year was 546.85 Billion!
That huge imbalance is part of the reason why China can’t win in a trade war with the US.

J Mac
April 5, 2018 3:30 pm

Great Lakes ice coverage on 4/4/2018 at 12.6%. 4/4/2017 at 2.8%. 4/3/2016 at 0.9%. WeatherBell is predicting another push of cold (-10F to -20F below average) and snow through the area (Dakotas through Ohio) this coming weekend… and another similar weather pattern possibly setting up for late next week.

April 5, 2018 4:18 pm

Figure 4 shows a pronounced dip in temperatures in February a century ago for Whitestown. A century later the dip was still there but reduced and moved forward a fortnight. Assuming that it is more than just an artifact of one station, is the cause of this effect known and does it have a name?

D. J. Hawkins
Reply to  archibaldperth
April 5, 2018 5:14 pm

Eskimo winter, as opposed to Indian summer?

April 5, 2018 6:34 pm


April 6, 2018 4:06 am

Record cold on tap week of April 07, 2018 as grain growing areas of Canada and USA will see temperatures as low as 4F.
The weather in North America will attack from two sides. In the west an atmospheric river, in the east frost and snow.
Moisture arrives from the equator itself.

Reply to  ren
April 6, 2018 4:18 am
April 6, 2018 5:00 pm

State of the crops: https://www.dtnpf.com/agriculture/web/ag/news/article/2018/04/02/first-crop-progress-report-season
U.S. winter wheat appears to be starting off the 2018 growing season in the worst condition in over a decade, according to USDA’s first weekly Crop Progress report issued Monday.
For the week ended April 1, 2018, winter wheat was rated only 32% in good-to-excellent condition, well below 51% at the same time last year and the lowest good-to-excellent rating since 2002.

April 6, 2018 6:26 pm

Just in from a greater mind than mine in response to this WUWT article:
A lesson for all of us.
Wow, great work. Wonderful insight, You’ve been doing this for a while. Using records unlikely to be fudged because it would be against someone’s self-interest, economic interest even better profit interest to fudge, would be nice to find a way to publish a list of measurements with perverse incentives. We know about the AGW religion. If you structure it right in a Scott Adams NLP way, you may be able to pace and lead the reader to the aha moment where they can draw the conclusion themselves. Even though you and others have debunked by visually negating the hockey curve that’s clearly been not enough to overcome the NLP advantage set in place by Mann etc., reinforced by the natural urge to use that to increase fame and funding which since we ourselves all do it every day in our own existence is not enough to carry the argument. Where we do ourselves a disservice every time we return to calling them out on exactly this. We end up looking like the extremists, but not you my friend since the heat 😊 has been replaced by cool observation, and the name calling in the denier community is fading, denier being one of those NLP terms that puts the reader on their side. Which is why ages ago I begged for some help from Scott, who could see how we were trapped and had no way out of the hole and even I had given up on the possibility of persuading large numbers away from their religious belief. Energy well if you will. And I saw you saw the same, turning your efforts and intensity to something more helpful. Behavior of the true believers Not malicious necessarily but of some, a very human failure, but as the crowd of followers grow, nearly impossible to divert, like an old fashioned religious revival. We forget the lessons of Jim Jones. Who was evil per outside observation, but a messiah from the inside, whose followers thought they were blessed to have such a messiah, none of them could see it, save the few that survived, looking back, and saying :=”oh shit” but for the grace of a different god go I, would have gone”. And we can see these events in every century if not generations depending on the stress on us lab rats (m (not meant as a pejorative, just a Scott Adams movie script drawn out of a few data points, sometimes convincingly but more often not). Some for the very good, some for the very bad. Flip a coin.
You David, do us a great service. And I’m sure you and a very few others are looking for unlikely to be fudged data sources. Remember it’s not just the instrument but the observers well intentioned more often than not. Occurs to me that having the ex-soviets and Chinese data sources would likely to be unfudged though these all have to be judged thru the lens of perverse incentives. In Russia you wanted to hit your five year goals, to rise in rank. So even this could work either way, fudge or drive the engine with good data because otherwise the perverse incentives would have a visible result, starvation, riots, local unrest that could not be ignored, and I think the same sort of behavior can be seen in the mandarin class in the great dynasties where the empress/emperor would brook no nonsense as a power to herself, knowing the cliff of the mandate of heaven was before her which would take her children with her and the internecine warfare of her mandarin class plotting the end of their competitors careers, and getting their balls back by calling out the their never anyone smarter in her meritocratic mandarin class. Though the soviet union had a bit of the same dynamics is wasn’t driven by the smartest set of elites ever jut pretty smart, and often sorted for smart.
So what other data sources do not have perverse incentives, not just a type of measurement, but it could be the same data source just in different locations and governments and institutions, ranked by perverse incentives, and observable good intentions? The higher the good intention the lower the rank in quality of data. Be interesting to get first person testimony discussion with the politburo members responsible for food, and untwist the data, ranked by, personality, pride of needing good data to succeed say rice production, and just orneriness ins like a great professor leads his students. Success over time driven by incentives. Income most of the time in the U.S. power and not being hung from the lamppost in communist bread basket areas, might be just be a binary bit, death or gulag, loss of power and rank and so on and so forth. What else? No clue if these are valid, perhaps a masters level class in the discipline can come up with 10 or 100 cases, by diversity of sensor and location (and this analysis may already have been done for entirely different reasons say anthropology, by time sampled. Nothing like the knife edge of life and death or gulag to improve focus. What about Egypt and the Nile River, and Ancient Babylonia, Biblical Seven years of famine, Yellow river Mandarin quality data of some data source. Seems like there must be a least amount of time of collection diversity , other than when just a few data points can be used to confirm a few data points from other sources, interestingly we know confirmation is 100% better than proof by negation’ insufficient to the task my daydreaming . perhaps Transportation costs per ton, fish yields, With a couple of Scott Adam’s like results, rewarding humility in the face of good science and math statistics discipline like you and your cohorts. Maybe we need to publish a self-deprecating and amusing list of “kill shots” which will cause readers to grin and say, you got it, clever are they to drive thru that hole, you stupid f-ers, whodathunk it’d be that simple? Just like T has playing the persuasion game in the U.S. made easy because the people so much want something to be true, even those that know they are being scammed, knowing it is with the best of intentions knowing he has my interest in his heart, almost with the intensity of a lover. Suh it is, and always will be given human feet of clay, and perfection being not of this earth sine we crawled up out of the swamp. And those that know they have to practice and love to help me/us succeed. Leaves the fact-checkers and establishments gasping for breath not knowing why something happened to them. And prepare as they might it will happen again because there is no way;; or measurement can guarantee the ball can’t escape its energy well, non-linear behavior only obvious in hindsight. Where else, in what system, are the incentives aligned with better data leads to longer lives, either as the ruled or ruler. By inertia, mass of people affected, state of the tensor equation.
Again, great work. All we need now is the Trump and P.T. Barnum recipe for discussions around this issue “to always leave them smiling” without rubbing noses in the fact they are fools, or have been fools. Or misinformed, or uneducated, have been seduced by a Jim Jones etc. Not that you do.

April 6, 2018 10:45 pm

There is quite a bit of cloud water over the US at the moment. The current rainfall here in my area of Northern California is steady, and moderate to heavy. There was a stretch from last night into today where it rained for around 18 hours. …https://earth.nullschool.net/#current/wind/surface/level/overlay=total_cloud_water/orthographic=-104.38,37.84,1107/loc=-129.443,42.984

Reply to  goldminor
April 7, 2018 1:56 am

Flood warnings are issued for the Middle Fork of the Feather River. Oroville dam may find out how successful the repair job was. Looking further up the coast into Oregon there is a super dense band of cloud water onshore with one spot registering 5.4kg/m2. That is huge. …https://earth.nullschool.net/#current/wind/surface/level/overlay=total_cloud_water/orthographic=-123.58,41.77,3000/loc=-123.987,42.668

Verified by MonsterInsights