This Week’s Disasters, Climate Change and the Pandemic

Guest News Brief by Kip Hansen  —  24 May 2020

 

featured_imageThe New York Times has an amusing feature called the Climate Section.  It has a neat newsletter (called ClimateFwd: ) that it will send you by email headlining its latest efforts to push the Climate Change narrative set by the editors of the NY Times.  The latest memes are that 1)  “All stories should be  Climate Change stories” and 2) “All pandemic stories must segue into increased concern about Climate Change”.

The latest effort is from Somini Sengupta is titled:  “What a Week’s Disasters Tell Us About Climate and the Pandemic” .     Oddly, the featured image (called “art” in the newspaper business), is a picture of boy waving a cloth at a swarm of locust in January (not exactly “this week” and not caused by climate change).

What climate change disasters does Sengupta point to?

“A cyclone slammed into the Indian megacity of Kolkata, pounding rains breached two dams in the Midwestern United States, and on Thursday came warning that the Atlantic hurricane season could be severe.”

Each of these is misrepresented and spun to be “climate change disasters”.

Cyclone Amphan

Cyclone Amphan is just one of the regularly occurring cyclones that sweep up the Bay of Bengal  nearly every year.  Despite the size of the cyclone and its path, only 80 lives were lost according to early counts. It was just 13 years ago on  15 November 2007 that Cyclone Sidr with wind speeds up to 260 km/hour, made landfall on southern Bangladesh, causing over 3,500 deaths and severe damage.  This week’s event, a supposed disaster,  was in reality  a miracle considering that it directly impacted Kolkata, which has a high population density and very poor infrastructure.  The governments of India and Bangladesh did a heroic job safeguarding their people.

Climate change had nothing to do with Cyclone Amphan —  cyclones are part of the normal climate of the Bay of Bengal.

Michigan Dam Failures

The claim that “pounding rains breached two dams in the Midwestern United States” is equally a misrepresentation.  To be picky, only one dam was breached, the other was simply overtopped.  It was not pounding rain at the time of the breach and it was not caused by climate change in any normal sense of the word.  I covered this story in “Michigan Dam Failures and Climate Change” – a wet spring and heavy rains, which are normal for Central Michigan, caused a dam to be breached  — a dam that has been known to be unsafe for years – it had been  declared repeatedly since  1993 by the FERC (which regulates hydroelectric dams) to be unsafe.  The Michigan Dam failures story is not a climate change story, it is a story of greed, self-interest and misguided environmental activism.  Read my earlier piece and the many interesting comments giving additional information.

Severe Hurricane Season

You may be getting tired of the term “misrepresentation” – but it must be used in this case as well.

What are the real Atlantic Hurricane Season predictions?

Colorado State University hurricane researchers are predicting an above-average Atlantic hurricane season in 2020, citing the likely absence of El Niño as a primary factor.” 

And from the US National Hurricane Center:

“May 21, 2020  — An above-normal 2020 Atlantic hurricane season is expected, according to forecasters with NOAA’s Climate Prediction Center, a division of the National Weather Service. The outlook predicts a 60% chance of an above-normal season, a 30% chance of a near-normal season and only a 10% chance of a below-normal season.”

The real predictions?  Probably an “above normal” season.  All seasons are one of the following:  “Above-normal, Normal, or Below-normal”.  Our striving NY Times journalist, Sengupta, links to another NY Times story for her hurricane statement – a story which quotes an unnamed federal weather scientist as saying that the coming hurricane season is “expected to be a busy one”.

There is no mention of a “severe” hurricane season from any reputable hurricane center or scientist.  The use of the word “severe” is gratuitous and patently false.

This coming season is predicted to be “above-normal”.   Why “above-normal”?   Philip Klotzbach, at the [ University of Colorado ] Colorado State University, says  his prediction is based on “the likely absence of El Niño as a primary factor.”  El Niño cycles (ENSO) are a natural, normal, recurring cyclical part of Earths overall weather/climate pattern.  ENSO cycles  are not climate change.

And then there are the locusts

Locusts in Africa and the Middle East are not extraordinary – they are cyclical and have plagued the region for all of recorded history.   I invite you to read Heartland’s take on this year’s swarms or NPR’s take on it (as usual for NPR, they report a “may be linked to…” causation clause required by their Editorial Narrative).   In either case, locust swarms are a recurring problem in the Horn of Africa, and have been for thousands of years.  It takes just the right series of weather events to kick off a huge swarm event – such a series  occurred over the last few years.  The weather sequence may be related to changes in the Indian Ocean Dipole, sometimes referred to as the Indian Ocean’s equivalent of the ENSO.  It may or may not be changing – but in the real world weather and climate system,  nothing remains the same.

 

And the Pandemic?

Of course, the governmental responses to the pandemic, which vary from country to country, have made everything worse and more dangerous for  almost everyone.  Only the rich and comfortable are spared the worst effects.

The poor of Africa, India, Bangladesh, whose daily lives and economies have been severely impacted by the lockdown orders, will suffer the most from any new adverse weather, climate, social, health  or economic event.

It has always been thus.   Only increased standards of living will lift the poor into a more comfortable level of existence.  That means strong vibrant economies, universally available electrical power, beneficent governments,   real education for boys and girls (and the opportunity for continued education for adults)  and allowing agriculture to thrive using all the latest scientific advances including pesticides, herbicides, and genetically improved crops – to name a few of the needed ingredients of a better future.  Readers are invited to add to this list.

What is not on that list?  Misguided attempts to control the weather and climate that will destroy economies and cripple industry resulting in  lower standards of living for the average man and woman.

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I  made a couple editing corrections — including the university where Philip Klotzbach works.   1030 hrs ET, 24 May 2020 — kh

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Author’s Comment:

And that’s the news brief for the day….

I am often caught by surprise, over and over,  by the lack of journalistic integrity – lack of what would have been considered the minimal norms of journalism 20 years ago – at what used to be one of the world’s great newspapers.  What a shame.

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88 thoughts on “This Week’s Disasters, Climate Change and the Pandemic

    • Spot on, Chaamjamal :It is the news media that has changed from what it used to be.

      Kip Hansen refers to Sangupta as “our striving NY journalist”. In my book she should not be honoured with the word journalist. Any self-respecting editor in old newspaper times would, of course, have junked that sort of journalism right away.

    • Chaamjamal, yours is an excellent site. The most devastating hurricanes/cyclones were evidently during the Little Ice Age! A cooling world obviously sets up a stronger temperature contrast between the larger cold air masses to the north and the warm moist equatorial air mass. Further the warmer air masses are commpressed narrower.

        • Goodness me, in 1970 the atmospheric CO2 concentration was a ‘safe’ 325 ppm.

        • The difference between 500,000 dead in 1970 and 80 today is computer modelling and early warning. This years cyclone Amphan minimum central pressure 925hPa was actually much stronger than Bhola 50 years ago on 960hPa.

  1. “…All those extreme weather hazards are made more frequent and intense by the accumulation of greenhouse gases in the atmosphere, which drives up temperatures on land and in the sea.”

    Where oh where does this “journalist” get the idea from that the world’s oceans are warmed by greenhouse gases? Last I heard, the oceans were still being warmed by the sun and release CO2 as they warm. Correct?

    As long as the news outlets are not being held accountable, this downward slide in journalistic quality and ethics will likely continue. I suppose that as long as they believe that this garbage sells, they will keep producing it. Either that or the NYT and others have abandoned journalistic ethics for political agendas–which they probably did a long time ago.

    • The (Pseudo) journalists of today are willing propagandists promoting a world view incompatible with individual rights and freedoms. The MSM continues to have a lot of power because most people don’t pay much attention to details and tend to believe the headlines and talking points that are somehow orchestrated (evidenced by use of the same exact words and talking points… system wide…every day) by the monolithic propaganda machine. Well, that and almost half the country receives paychecks dependent on this system…why complain if lies are required to promote the bigger lies?

  2. lack of what would have been considered the minimal norms of journalism 20 years ago

    Twenty years is an understatement.
    During the 70’s and first half of the 80’s I used to enjoy the Danish national newspaper Information. The article could span over several days, in order to go in details on a specific subject. The journalistic quality was magnificent.
    But in the later half of the 80’s, the paper was suddenly dominated by left-wing socialist journalists, writing subjective articles with a lifted finger.
    That was the en of the last useful newspaper in Denmark, and I doubt it would be different in the US.

    • Carl ==> The effect is the same, the timing might be different. The NY Times held out as long as it had aggressive Public Editors. The last one was fired for telling the journalists (and other editors) there that they could not call a sitting President a “liar” just because they disagreed with his political positions.

  3. Thanks for the update, Kip, and here’s another one: This morning I was watching CNN International and John King was interviewing a Dr. Brandt, from the Harvard School of Medicine. Dr. Brandt (specialty unknown) was explaining how there has been an alarming trend underway, and how Trump has exacerbated it, to wit: his statements are UNDERMINING SCIENTIFIC AUTHORITY! The undermining was alluded to as starting with Climate Change and now expanding into the pandemic. I thought “what a pompous bastard!” but then I realized, wait a minute I am a Scientist and I have SCIENTIFIC AUTHORITY! As a scientist I was curious to know how much of this authority I had, so I tried out my authority on my dogs. Turns out 1. I don’t have any authority, or 2. this SCIENTIFIC AUTHORITY is somehow limited to Harvard (an by extension any Ivy League School?). Now I’m really confused and have lost my way (and my dogs are looking at me funny).

    • Ron ==> Wm Briggs wrote an amusing piece on Expertopia.

      Any disagreement with “experts” — particularly “scientific experts” — is being portrayed in the media as an “attack on Science”.

      The media is confused about this because experts who disagree with other experts are not attacking Science — unless those dissenting experts are disagreeing with a socially/politically mandated meme.
      Think Climate Change Catastrophe, Pandemic Lockdowns, Victim Culture, etc.

    • The U.S. Constitution only mentions “science” once under Article I, Section 8, whereby congress has the power to “8: To promote the Progress of Science and useful Arts, by securing for limited Times to Authors and Inventors the exclusive Right to their respective Writings and Discoveries;”

      There is no mention of any scientific authority.

    • Ron, I think I’ve identified your problem–you were watching CNN. Do you think your dogs didn’t notice? No wonder they’re looking at you funny and you’ve lost authority.

      • The only CNN program I could watch until recently was Fareed Zakaria (GPS) but even now he has succumbed to ad hominan attack against the Republicans and President Trump in particular. And mostly for personality flaws and not public policy. While I know he was leftist in philosophy but a fairly progressive liberal, he had intelligent guests on and generally did a good interview, on par with what Charlie Rose used to do before he was me-tooed. I do miss Charlie Rose at least for his journalistic integrity covering many different topics over several decades, which CNN has none of now. But now I can’t usually get past Fareed’s opening monologue, which is usually repeating a lot of the straight up lies and propaganda of the Fake News. So no more CNN for me, period. I only have so much time, so for American commentary, FOX is the only channel now that any semblance of actual truth. And some there are starting to slip too.

        • OAN is very good and quite accurate in their reporting. They are especially good at world reporting as they seem to have actual reporters abroad who do their own reporting instead of just regurgitating one article written by some foreign paper. I have tried numerous times to get a different view on an incident only to find it was all from the same article with the wording changed a bit, sometimes.
          Unfortunately, only DIRCTv carries them on cable or satellite but they are on youtube and can be seen on their web site.

      • Thanks, Len, I will try to reform myself and I’m pretty sure my dogs will help in this endeavor.

        • Ron ==> I have been a Pet Professional — owned a Pet & Feed Store, raised Wire-haired Dachsies and Shar-Peis.

          Dogs are very sensitive to liberal-progressive biases and it disturbs their digestion.

      • Heh heh heh, but seriously now, where would your dogs go to find out the opposite of reality? I don’t watch CNN because even if I had medications handy I doubt that I could stop myself hurling.

        Hmmm, note to self: CNN could be good for weight loss. Must google bulimia nervosa side effects.

        I do, however, read the occasional Grauniad and Huffing and Puffing Post articles for both amusement and knowing what the useful idiot phony-leftists are pushing. So they do provide a service, along with whose products not to buy.

  4. Speaking of Bangladesh, it is rapidly moving up among the list of countries with high levels of CV-19 infections and it just passed Sweden as far as cases are concerned. Now, I know there are those who say that cases are largely irrelevant, but case number is a metric that is useful for describing outbreaks.

    https://www.worldometers.info/coronavirus/#countries

    India is further ahead than Bangladesh but the outbreak there is still in its early stages with a high growth rate. Because of its population and high levels of poverty, India very likely will end up with the highest number of cases and deaths.

    • Don’t forget that India is prone to embrace alternative treatments, like HCQ. That’s important because I suspect the highest mortalities will be restricted to rich countries/hospitals that utilize a more rigid Western approach of aggressive treatments, like early high-PEEP intubation and antivirals. So far that seems to be the pattern.

      A similar thing happened during the SARS outbreak. I believe Canada had the highest mortalities, and they also most aggressively treated with ribavirin, a DNA chain terminator (nucleoside analog). I can’t believe they are using that to treat Covid-19(84). They did the same thing during AIDS with AZT (another nucleoside analog) that was responsible for most of the mortality. Once they transitioned to less toxic drugs, the mortalities dropped.

      • Yes, I think you are correct regarding our improving knowledge around treatments. India also has a relatively young demographic. Proportionally, there aren’t a lot of 90 year olds.

        So, it’s possible that India can have a huge number of cases and relatively low number of deaths. Still, it has roughly 17% of the world’s population. Of course, China has a similar high population but data coming from China is mostly untrustworthy.

        When this is all done, likely U.S., Brazil, Russia and India will have suffered the most.

  5. From the post, “This coming season is predicted to be “above-normal”. Why “above-normal”? Philip Klotzbach, at the University of Colorado, says his prediction is based on “the likely absence of El Niño as a primary factor.””

    Correction: Dr. Klotzbach is at Colorado State University not the University of Colorado.

  6. The RNA vaccine unicorn is designed to do one thing – well perhaps two things – it will make sterile both those “immunised” and the rest of the population, via the viral shedding of the vaccinated.

    However, my laughable predictions could be completely wrong, and I sincerely hope they are! ;-(

  7. Ms. Sengupta’s biographic gives one a good perspective on her background to report/comment on subjects related to science.

    Her first book: “The End of Karma: Hope and Fury Among India’s Young,” was published in 2016 by W.W. Norton. She grew up in India, Canada and the United States, graduating from the University of California at Berkeley.

    Other notable features of her pathway in life while providing insight as to her qualifications to discuss science, her trip on a river ferry in Africa. I am sure this also was an emotional experience.

    What we have here is the NYTs hiring for a particular agenda and narrative giving space for folks to express their feelings about things.

    Kinda nice, don’t you think?

  8. The NYT is now headed up by ex-BBC man Mark Thompson. You want disinformation and l*ying by omission? The BBC are the go-to guys! No surprise at all to see the NYT going down the same misleading climate hysteria rabbit hole.

    • CheshireRed
      I find it interesting that more than half of the Yahoo US News articles are by Reuters and the Guardian. They are invariably supportive of AGW and critical of the current administration, with more opinion than facts. We in this country are generally concerned about Russia meddling in our affairs. Yet, British news media do it openly and nobody seems to notice or care.

    • CheshireRed, check out how David Hawkins and Jason Goodman at Crowdsource the Truth are exposing the BBC’s role…..”listen and obey’…..
      David Hawkins is ‘reverse engineering’ major crimes and the role that the media has played.

      https://www.pscp.tv/w/1yoKMawBypwKQ

      • In the name of Justice, I’m formulating (in my mind) the basis for a class action Civil Lawsuit on behalf of somewhat more than half of American Voters.

        The Suite involves the afore known complicity of the Press in a seditious coup conspiracy to unseat an elected president by collaboratively confabulating lies to alter public opinion. The offenses include the dissemination false information in support of baseless (“Trumped-Up”) criminal charges against innocent citizens and the dissemination of disinformation fabricated without basis by the several (soon to be incarcerated) co-conspirator criminals in the leadership positions of Federal Government Law Enforcement and Intelligence Agencies.

        Complaints in the suit should include stealing the House of Representatives in 2018 by faulty public opinion misdirection resulting from the coup-related disinformation activities, an action resulting in a baseless politically motivated Impeachment and Trial in which one Article of Impeachment characterized the invocation of Constitutional Separation of Powers by the President as an Impeachable offense.

        Damages in the amount of $65 Trillion (~$1 Million per offended voter) plus 1 additional Four (4) Year Presidential Term in office commencing in January 2024 will be sought on behalf of the Plaintiffs.

        The presentation of evidence will include the serial verbal recitation of every lie told by the Press during the 3 year period of the commission of said offenses and crimes.

        The recitation of the evidence by the Plaintiffs is expected to require 666 years to complete. All legal expenses incurred by the Plaintiffs shall be the responsibility of the several defendants.

  9. From the article: “The weather sequence may be related to changes in the Indian Ocean Dipole, sometimes referred to as the Indian Ocean’s equivalent of the ENSO.”

    WUWT displays an ENSO meter on its webpage. Is there a similar IOD meter somewhere that can be viewed?

    • Tom ==> The Ausies track and predict the IOD. The chart at http://www.bom.gov.au/climate/ocean/outlooks/#region=IOD is interesting as an example of the problem of using a model that is inherently Chaotic (Chaos Theory definition) — that shows the thing predicted (Monthly Sea Surface Temperature anomalies for IOD region) going “any-old-where” — and then pretending that an average of the chaotic results is some sort of prediction. Good heavens!

  10. From the article: “I am often caught by surprise, over and over, by the lack of journalistic integrity – lack of what would have been considered the minimal norms of journalism 20 years ago – at what used to be one of the world’s great newspapers. What a shame.”

    It is a shame, and a danger to our freedoms.

    I think journalism has been so politicized over the last few decades (since the Vietam war) to the point that journalism is now mostly just a propaganda organ for the Left.

    And this applies to jounalism all over the Western World. We are inundated with Leftwing propagana on an hourly basis. It’s amazing there are still people who can see through this blizzard of lies, but they do. Let’s just hope there are enough of them around to counter the lies and distortions of reality coming out of our mainstream media now.

    We’ll have a good test of where we stand as to the effectiveness of Leftwing propaganda when the November U.S. presidential elections roll around. Then we will know who holds the majority, the realists or the dupes. I think the realists are going to win out.

    • Tom
      You said, “I think the realists are going to win out.” I hope that you are right, and it isn’t just wishful thinking. However, those funding the “Leftwing propaganda” apparently disagree with you, or else they would knowingly be wasting their money and time. Their basic premise is to follow the advice of Joseph Goebbels, with the expectation of accomplishing their goals.

  11. “You may be getting tired of the term “misrepresentation” – but it must be used in this case as well.”

    I think “disrepresentation” is a more appropriate term. It’s purposeful and with malice, not innocuous and due to simple ignorance.

    • Jeff ==> Having some trouble finding disrepresentation in any dictionary — can you give a link or reference?

      • I assume it’s a neologism. Quite a good one too. It happens right across the ideological spectrum.

  12. Good article, as usual.

    Two comments:
    (1)
    The Michigan dam needed repairs — the owners had been lowering the water level rather than fixing the old dam. Someone here in Michigan complained the lower water level caused deaths of mussels, so lowering the water level by 8 feet was not allowed this year. Oops !

    (2)
    Why should we care about hurricane predictions?

    Have past predictions been very accurate?

    The coming climate change crisis is nothing more than a prediction … that never comes true!

    A prediction that started in the late 1950s … yet gullible people are still believing it !

    • Richard ==> William “Bill” Gray at CSU was the world’s best hurricane forecaster — Philip Klotzbach trained under him and has taken over his unit at CSU. They have a a very good record.

      Hurricane predictions help emergency relief agencies plan — in a vague way — for possible impacts — but for the most part, it is a scientific endeavor attempting to understand the cyclical nature of the weather phenomena.

  13. Great common sense article! I read the NYT’s every day and then spend a few minutes unrolling my eyes.

    • Murphy ==> Try this eye exercise: Look first at a distant object and bring it into sharp focus. Next, shift to a nearby object, and do the same. Repeat several times.

      Works for me….

  14. Amazing that the disaster of Lockdowns has not been covered. Trillions of dollars burned for no reason. We will all pay for the misstep of our politicians.

  15. Kip wrote:
    “I am often caught by surprise, over and over, by the lack of journalistic integrity – lack of what would have been considered the minimal norms of journalism 20 years ago – at what used to be one of the world’s great newspapers. What a shame.”

    There have not been a large number of events where I had some connection or enough proximity to be familiar with what happened but they have occurred every now and then over the years – going back to the mid 1950’s. Only one of these was sensational enough to be national rather than local news. In every case, the major part of what I read in newspapers, or saw on television, was fantasy concocted from whole cloth. Make believe, heavily biased reporting from the major new sources is nothing new.

    What I remember reading about American history is that, up until not many years before the war of ’76, all printing was officially under the control of and direction of officers of the Crown. The only thing that could be legally printed at any time was official doctrine. Of course as printing became a more wide spread technology, whether legally or not, as in current use of the internet, more and more alternative viewpoints became available. Complete suppression of events became more difficult, but punitive efforts continued to be made.

    Truly objective reporting, independent of editorial narratives, might have existed, even entered a golden age of sorts after Independence, but I doubt that it survived the beginning of WWII, if that long.

    • Andy ==> At the time of the American Revolution, newspapers were used to promote political viewpoints and regularly misrepresented events.

      There was a Golden Period of Journalism, after WW II, when journalism tried to become a proud profession, establishing standards, having strict values, editors who cared about the truth and fairness in reporting (most of the time…lots of exceptions even in the best of the papers particularly on sensitive political topics).

      Gone now at the NY Times, probably forever. The barbarians have breached the gates.

      • Hey now, The NY Times won a Pulitzer Prize for their collussssssion coverage. That story has to be true 😉

    • AndyHce

      There have been a few times in my life when I have been interviewed by a reporter. When I read the story, my reaction was, “I don’t remember saying that! It doesn’t even sound like something I would say.”

      Then there was the time when I was being recorded for a TV news program. I started to cite some facts about the relationship between California justifiable homicides and the length of waiting periods, and the reporter turned to the cameraman and drew her finger across her throat, and the cameraman obligingly lowered the camera.

      [For those interested, when California increased the waiting-period from 5 days to 15 days to purchase a handgun, the firearm justifiable-homicide rate per capita, measured as the percentage of total-firearm homicides per capita, dropped in half, while the total homicides continued its steep climb, characteristic of the 1970s. That was something that had never happened before. My interpretation was that someone who was in need of protection, say from an abusive partner, wasn’t able to get protection in time, and became a statistic instead of a survivor.]

        • Susan ==> In my years here, I have checked with scientists about quotes attributed to them in the press maybe a dozen times. Only once did the press have it even “sort of” right.

          The scientists don;t complain because being quoted at all adds to their reputation.

        • I quit writing a column for a local paper because the editor would cut so much text out of it that it was practically unintelligible when they got done. I thought to myself: What’s the point of writing when you can’t get your point across. So I stopped. Cramming a science story into a limited space does not do the article any good.

          • Tom ==> Short, punchy, true-enough science columns are hard.

            What kind of word limit did they place on your pieces.

            Here for a full-essay, I try (not always successfully) to keep to a limit of 2,000 words.

            News Brief are called that because they are far shorter == 1000 – 1200 words.

            Many (most?) people are NOT real readers…they read the title and the lede and maybe a paragraph or two more. Short-interest spans are the rule.

            Almost NO ONE reads magazine length pieces — 10,000 words.

          • The newspaper never gave me a word limit. I would guess I was writing about two or three thousand words. They did manage to get most of what I wrote in the column but they always seemed to cut out what I would consider vital to the understanding, so sometimes, it would look disjointed. I learned pretty quick to cut down on the words as much as I could. I was writing about Space Development, if you can believe that, so I was trying to write about a complicated subject.

            I started doing that a few months after the Challenger Space Shuttle disaster. I kept hearing stories about the “end of the space program” and I just had to do something, so I volunteered to teach space development and astronomy to fourth and fifth graders at the elementary school where my mother taught, and I ended up writing the newspaper column.

            The elementary school where I taught won an award from NASA for a space station project that they submitted in an effort to get the space program jumpstarted. The space station design just happened to include a Space Shuttle External Tank as the main component. 🙂

            NASA made a big deal out of it, and came and visited the school and made them Young Astronauts, but they were not so much interested in our space station design as they were interested in highlighting the children’s enthusiasm. They should have used our ET space station design, if they wanted a robust space program. And, as you can see, NASA had a detailed heads-up on ET space stations long before the actual choice of a space station design was made. The ET space station was later certified as a choice for the official space station design and was designated “Option C”. But, NASA in their bureaucratic mode decided not to chose the cheapest, fastest, most simple Option C design, they chose instead, the most expensive, slowest, most complicated design of the three choices. Well, we tried.

            We actually made a mockup of the External Tank Space Station out on the school playground. We wanted to show just how large the ET was, and it’s big.. We drew the outline in chak of the ET on a portion of the playground covered in blacktop, and then we used flexible white plumbing pipe as ribs to show the volume of the ET (the half that showed above ground:).

            I don’t know if all that helped the space program any, but it made me feel better.

          • Btw, Kip, I was listening to the new NASA Administrator Jim Brindenstine yesterday and he said he was in the fifth grade when the Challenger blew up and he saw in on tv along with millions of other kids.

            Bridenstine is from Oklahoma. He could have been in one of my classes. 🙂

            Good Luck to Spacex. We might have a launch here in about an hour.

            One good thing about this one: If something goes wrong with the rocket, the crew will have a fighting chance of surviving it.

          • Tom ==> weather delay, I believe. My wife and I watched the SpaceXf succcessful first-stage return landing at Cape Canaveral Air Station a few years ago. Only afterward learned that we were in the precise spot that would be smeared by debris if the return landing had failed!

  16. “…the lack of journalistic integrity…”

    Kip, Since this seems endemic these days, I’ve wondered if it is on-the-job training of otherwise well and honestly educated journalism students or if they are corrupted in the classroom ideologically. Now there is a blockbuster story, but there may be no easy way short of becoming a student to discover it.

    • Gary ==> The simplest explanation is the wildly political unbalance in American universities — 80-90% or better liberal progressive Democrats in professorships shaping the minds and thoughts of their students. This unbalance is even more extreme in journalism departments.

      Some of this is covered at this site: https://heterodoxacademy.org/

  17. It’s no secret that most MSM has been bought by the Progressive/Socialist/Marxists ideologues. “News” is now propaganda. The LA Times has gone to blatantly substituting front page news headlines with opinion editorials and most news outlets follow that pattern. If it wasn’t for the internet that’s all that would be available to the people. Not that the internet is without bias at the extremes but at least you get to whittle down the hype to get to a semblance of truth.

    • I saw that headline. Are the Alarmists bold enough, or desperate enough to actually point to a human victim of Human-caused climate change? I think they are. This will be fun!

      • If the doctors are going to start using CAGW (Catastrophic Anthropogenic Global Warming) as a cause of death, then first they are going to have to figure out, just like with the Wuhan virus, if the person died *of* CAGW, or *with* CAGW.

        It really would be medical malpractice if some doctor tried to connect a non-existent phenomenon like Human-caused Climate Change to the death of a human being. It can’t kill you if it doesn’t exist, Doc!

    • The U.S. is in the process of getting much of its drought wiped out. There wasn’t that much to begin with what with the extensive rains we had last year. It looks like the same kind of pattern is setting up although the storm fronts seem to be spaced out a little more than last year, not just training over one area all the time.

      My area had record rainfall and a record number of tornadoes last year, but it doesn’t look like it is going to be as serious as it was last year, which is good since it was a record. The rains almost washed our World War II submarine, the Batfish, down the Arkansas River last year, the flood was so high. It came within a couple of feet of cutting off our municipal water supply.

        • Tom ==> Cute story — good thing the sea cocks were all still closed and the hull watertight after all these years.

          • Kip, during that flood, a couple of barges broke lose from their moorings and were swept down the Arkansas river where they collided with the lock and dam structure downstream, and the barges were completely destroyed. The water just ground them up against the dam.

            That’s what would have happened to the Batfish if she had broken loose.

            A lot of people fought very hard to save that ship.

            We had record rainfall last year, as the stroms just kept training over our area for weeks, and since we had numerous storms, we also had record numbers of tornadoes, although none of them were strong EF4 or EF5 tornadoes.

            This year is a lot better. So far anyway. It’s raining right now.

          • Tom ==> Tryto stay dry. In the Dominican Republic, there is a “folk belief” that getting rain on one’s hair causes illness. One often see’s expensively dressed men and women on the streets of the capital with plastic on-use shopping bags covering their hair in the rain.

          • I’m trying to keep dry, Kip, but we have a tropical system sitting on top of us just spinning around and dumping water on us. It’s going to hang around for a couple of more days, so we will be soaked by that time.

            It’s always a good sign when there is lots of soil moisture in the ground going into June in Oklahoma.

          • Tom ==> Good luck with Bertha — NOAA just managed to declare it a Tropical Storm before it went ashore — thus hoping to pump up the TS numbers for the season.

          • “NOAA just managed to declare it a Tropical Storm before it went ashore — thus hoping to pump up the TS numbers for the season. ”

            That was my thought too, when I heard they had a “surprise” TS.

  18. Over the last twenty years the domination of the Left in Academia and education has resulted in the political corruption of all the World’s Press. This is especially true in English speaking countries but applies overall.
    Publishing a list of disasters that can be linked by the Left to CO2 and Global Warming is the long way round. The short list would be disasters that were inadvertently not linked to CO2.
    The domination of Media by the Left has ushered in the Age of Stupid. Power is now in the hands of the Elite who KNOW that they are superior is knowledge to all others.

  19. The first super cyclonic storm to occur in the Bay of Bengal since the 1999 Odisha cyclone that killed nearly 10,000 people. Death toll to date for cyclone Amphan around 100 people.

    Quote Kip Hansen “The governments of India and Bangladesh did a heroic job safeguarding their people.”

    I totally agree, hat’s off to all those involved with the evacuation amid this pandemic.

    Just to add another layer of misery to the Indian nation I see they too may have to deal with a locust plague.

    https://www.theweek.in/news/india/2020/05/22/after-covid-cyclone-india-bracing-up-for-locust-plague.html

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