It’s against the law in New York City to own a duck.
A cold night in
“I thought about writing something dismissive with reference to the glorious late October sunshine…”
So, I was tempted to do my usual thing, trolling idiots on YouTube comment threads.
Usually it’s climate-change deniers. Kids in stinky bedrooms and dumpster-divers in hostels and piss-stained sofa dwellers in grimy basements; contrarians who think they’re really smart putting one over on the libtards, regurgitating the ludicrous myths put about for decades by the PR people for the ‘nergy bidness.
What was it Trump said about Republicans being too dumb to vote?
it’s just natural warming, up ‘n’ down, happens all the time. It’s the sun cycle, we’re in a Grand Solar Minimum, a Kondratieff wave…. It’s really an ice age. It stopped warming in 1999. The planets are all on one side of the sun. It’s volcanoes, earthquakes, eclipses, chemtrails, geoengineering, Planet Nibiru – stuff falling in the sea making the sea-level rise. Biblical prophesy. Plants will eat all the CO2, it’s good for them, we’ll have more food. We’ll capture and bury the rest of the CO2 using clean coal. It’s not poisonous, anyway. We can pump sshiny stuff in the air, reflect the sunlight (away from the food crops? Don’t think so. Ed). Nothing to see, just a Chinese hoax; scientists chasing bigger grants; governments levying ‘green taxes’ to make us non-taxpayers poorer, take away our guns.
But sometimes it’s climate-change accepters writing piteously about terrible extreme weather events occurring where I live, when I know they’re not.
Mostly those stories come via the editor of the Daily Express.
And yesterday I read that the UK is being plunged into an Arctic freezer-box, and I thought about writing something dismissive with reference to the glorious late October sunshine we’ve been having, warm and welcoming under blue skies.
Then just now I took Hunzi out for his late-night walk to the bridge and back.
Reader, I am wearing a T-shirt under a lightweight sweater under a heavy fleece under a Gore-tex lined and padded overcoat, plus a sheepskin cap with earflaps, acquired from a supplier somewhere in the trackless snowy wastes of Canada (‘Made in Turkey’) where they know a bit about cold weather.
And I can barely walk, I am so cold my teeth are chattering and the air is condensing in a cloud around me. Cold, seeping up from the very ground, through the thin rubber soles of my tennis shoes, is turning my legs to unfeeling pipes of non-compliance. I urge Hunzi to get on with his piss-sniffing and hurry on home, where it’s really no warmer
Sadly I cannot afford both to heat my home and drink wine, so it’s almost as cold inside as it is out. Having to leave a window for Cats doesn’t help. I go to bed with everything on but my pants and shoes – yes, even wearing the hat – wrapped in an extra fleece blanket.
Yet I am sure if you go into the town centre, it will still be teeming with raucous party girls in skimpy boob-tubes and microskirts, and cool young dudes brazening it out in sleeveless Freddy Mercury vests and shorts, showing off their tattoos and their rippling abs, all trying to get laid before they make it illegal.
Maybe a tattoo or two would keep me warm through the coming ice age?
Okay, here’s one. Andrew Wheeler, the profoundly corrupt Scott Pruitt’s supposedly less corrupt replacement at the US Environmental Protection Agency, has passed an edict.
The “Normal Odor Rule” removes the existing requirement for factory farms, of which there are many, many thousands, to report incidences of environmental contamination to the EPA, or even to inform local residents that their air or water has become contaminated.
Such incidences, he advises, are merely “normal odors” that should not be subject to harmful regulation.
Just lettin’ ya know. (Source TYT/Ring of Fire channel)
Meanwhile as he pretends to be sending thousands upon thousands of troops to the Mexican border with orders to shoot any refugees who throw stones (an illegal measure: the US Army is banned by law from engaging in civilian policing operations on US territory) the Pentagon’s assessment of the threat from Trump’s terrifying caravan of invaders: brown people and middle eastern terrorists, drug dealers and criminals, many of them under five years old, has been leaked to Newsweek magazine.
Basically, the Army’s position is, there is no threat. Less than 20 percent are expected to ever reach the US border; they are at least 800 miles, or six weeks’ walk, away; there are no middle eastern terrorists. (Plus, of course, there are already 20 thousand ICE and Border Patrol agents doing their job; while without drug smugtglers, the economy would probably collapse.) Also, media reports suggest, there is no smallpox (a Fox News conspiracy theory – smallpox was eradicated worldwide in the 1980s) or leprosy among the desperate migrants.
It is all a big, fat, shameless Trump lie, at your – the taxpayer’s – expense.
And going on past form, once the elections are over next week he will tell an interviewer from the Fake News media, an Enemy of the People: sure, I made it up, but we won, didn’t we?
Just like he did when the entitled, Ivy League fratboy and multiply accused incontinent sex-pest, the temperamentally unstable and (according to a letter signed by 1,400 law professors) legally unfit, redfaced, beer-drinkin’ Justice Kavanaugh was finally loaded onto the Supreme Court, and Trump admitted that the lies he’d told about Dr Blasey Ford, the vicious character assassination he engaged in, the suppression of the FBI investigation had all helped to get his boy over the line, so what? Another win for Donny. Do we ever get fed up of winning?
And the dumbfucks will take that and go on believing this degenerate, self-serving, criminal liar, this purulent, overly made-up, pig-ignorant proto-fascist from whom the unbearable stench of amoral expediency is just “normal odor”, was sent by God to clean-up America. (Source: MSNBC)
Those who are suffering most, however, are Trump staffers fleeing the building. TV station CNN has imposed a ban on hiring anyone connected with the Trump administration on the grounds that they can’t be trusted to tell the truth.
Trump’s lie counter since he took office is approaching 6.5 thousand, according to the special fact-checking unit at the Washington Post. He told 1,100 lies or made other false or mistaken assertions during October alone, an average of over 30 a day. (CNN)
The biggest one after the ‘caravan invasion’ he’s been called out on, he’s told his dumbfucks many times at rallies how proud he is of his own, very wonderful idea that he signed into law just this summer, providing for veterans to be able to seek healthcare from a different company if their condition isn’t dealt with by their own insurer within 30 days.
That law was actually signed by President Obama in 2014. (MSNBC)
It stinks worse
The UK Home Office is not fit for purpose and should be broken up into separate, accountable areas of responsibility.
We have crises in policing and immigration that Home Office officials have proved time and again, they are neither competent nor fit to manage; preferring instead to rely on the insouciant lies of press officers and misinformation provided to ministers by civil servants. And in five months’ time they will have to administer a new Customs and Excise regime that is nowhere near ready as the Government is still unable to define what it will be after we exit the EU next March.
Remember when David Cameron announced magnanimously that we were going to take in 3,000 unaccompanied “vulnerable” child refugees from Syria? It didn’t seem very many, considering the 10 thousand Jewish kids we extracted from Nazi Europe in1938. But it was something.
And remember how, after the Daily Mail had finished lying that the first “children” were really adults, the number was cut by that fucking ghastly hag, the vicar’s daughter at the Home Office, to 480, just to garner votes from the gum-gnashing Dacre fanbase, most of whom are already mercifully dead, and the “Tommy Robinson” crowd?
So, take a guess how many we’ve resettled in the last two years? Go on, guess.
Four hundred? Three hundred? A hundred and ten?
But it’s estimated that 7 thousand children have gone missing from unofficial camps in France and elsewhere, many trafficked into slavery or prostitution, while Home Secretary Sajid Javed (the name bespeaks some immigrant status of his own. Go home, Mr Javed) stands by and twiddles his bloodstained thumbs, whistling at the sky and counting his happy racist voters.
This country under the Conservatives has become a stinking moral pariah; a tacky seaside pier with rotten supports, that is about to come crashing down on the next tide.
And the idiots go on voting for it.
(Source: Guardian, 03 Nov. http://www.theguardian.com/world/2018/nov/03/uk-admits-only-20-unaccompanied-child-refugees-in-two-years)
And in local news…
“Aldi, the award-winning discount food retailer, is preparing a proposal to redevelop the currently vacant land in Boglington-on-Sea with a new, high-quality food store.” (Reads the press release printed verbatim in the local rag, followed by a series of clearly invented ‘reader’ Comments all marvelling at the wondrous tidings and praising Aldi to the skies.)
“An Aldi food store would provide a new store in a convenient and accessible location, bringing high-quality produce at discounted prices to the whole community. A store at this location would help to keep spending local and allow residents to do their food shopping without travelling out of the area.”
So, good news. Once you pass the Morrison’s superstore in the retail park on the edge of town, keep going a quarter of a mile down the road and there’s this really local Aldi (artist’s impression) on a vacant lot, and 200 yards further on there’s a large Tesco and a Marks & Spencer food hall (where they pulled down the elderly people’s daycare centre built only eight years earlier), and then a few hundred yards further into town where there are two Spar stores, one of them with 24-hour opening, and on the hill on your left a Co-Op and another Spar and on the opposite hill a large if unappealing CQ Foodstore and between the hills, next door to one another in what would have made a nice central town square but is just a fucking huge car park, there’s an Iceland and a Lidl.
So now thank heavens we can heave a sigh of relief. We can ignore all those news reports about failing retailers in the age of Ocado, we no longer need to fly to Tasmania to do our food shopping, or have stuff delivered from Krasnoyarsk… for now, for the first time in our lives we are allowed not to leave the area to do our food shopping, allowed not to travel 20 miles to the next nearest Tesco, Co-Op, etcetera!
Bless you, Aldi, for this, your environmentally sustainable beneficence.
And I’m just dying for yet more huge supply lorries to belt past my house day and night at speeds considerably in excess of the 30 mph limit, ripping up the road surface, which has to be re-laid every three years.
Our only hope is, this is the third or the fourth time I’ve seen this same story from Aldi about the same old brownfield site in the last 14 years.
What’s the German for ‘wankers’?
On our walk, Hunzi and I have an unfortunate encounter with the local gossip-merchant, who stoppeth one of two to brief me at inordinate length on the latest doings, usually of people I have never heard of and have no interest in.
One such is his neighbour, who got off a charge of raping his 12-year-old granddaughter, or some such, thanks to some adroitly brutal cross-examination of the child by an evil barrister. I think that must have been some years ago as he has told me about it in gory detail several times before.
I’m pleased to hear, too, that our local MP has also been given an extraordinarily light sentence for downloading child pornography but has to wear an electronic tag for five years. That one didn’t make it into the mainstream media, and I find no reference to it on Google either, or on the party website, so we’ll give it a pass.
A former neighbor of mine who twice threatened me with a shotgun over my contractor spraying his Japanese knotweed, but subsequently broke his neck when an old motorcycle he had tried to repair exploded, throwing him into the air, has happily recovered. A man I don’t know who drove a three-wheeler, however, has died.
I learn that for the past four years I could have been claiming a free TV licence, although I am not yet 75, which is the usual age for the concession to operate, provided I was in receipt of Pension Credit; and that the Jobcentre is paying people directly to work for local employers three days a week for nothing.
A retired policeman he knows, a very nice man, had a wife who moved out lock, stock and barrel while he was out at work, leaving him only a can of peas on the stairs. The burger van unofficially parked in the football field car park, owned by foreigners, was broken into two days ago.
Finally, I am treated to a list of his relatives and acquaintances who seem to be benefiting from State largesse on an improbable scale, while living in rent-free social housing. One such has a £700 a week disability allowance but has been seen out shopping with heavy bags.
I don’t know whether to let my envy simmer, or pop along for some benefits advice to the Citizens’ Advice Bureau, to which he helpfully gives me directions, although he cannot remember what it is called.
I have just eaten a £4 box of KitKat ‘Senses’ chocolates at two sittings and am feeling sick.
GW: But clouds got in my way
Italy: “The death toll from fierce storms battering Italy has risen to 9 (now 11) as wild autumn weather swept across many parts of Europe. Roads were blocked and thousands of people were left without power in southern and central Europe, as rain and violent (110 mph) winds sparked flooding and tore up trees. Heavy snow fell in mountainous areas of France and Italy, trapping scores of drivers in their cars and tourists in hotels. Venice was inundated by near-record flooding and tourists were barred from St Mark’s Square on Monday as local authorities said the high water peaked at 156cm. The water level has only topped 150cm five times before in recorded history.” (from: Guardian). Rome was hit with a massive hailstorm, streets turned to rivers of ice, etc. Meanwhile it was hot enough in the north to spark a huge wildfire near Belluno.
France: “More than 1,000 drivers were trapped in their cars for the night in the mountains of the Massif Central region as snowstorms engulfed the roads. Another 400 had to spend the night in train carriages at the main station in the eastern city of Lyon after heavy snow blocked the tracks. About 195,000 homes were without power across mainland France, most of them in eastern and central regions. Another 21,000 homes lost power on the Mediterranean island of Corsica, which was placed on red alert on Monday for powerful winds, shutting its airports and ports.” (from: Guardian)
Obviously, the idiots hadn’t read my previous Post where I warned them about all this. But a meter of snow in the Alps again this year (remember the 13,000 tourists trappen in Chamonix last year?) doesn’t mean there’s an ice age coming: between the cold regions is a heatwave. Severe-weather.eu sums it up: “a very intense cold core resulting in extremely cold weather across eastern Iberia, S France and western Mediterranean. Ahead of the low and frontal system, extremely warm airmass is being advected across the Balkan peninsula into eastern Europe. With temperatures 10-12 °C warmer than average, an extremely warm afternoon for late October is expected in the lowlands and also mid-levels.”
“The weather pattern is now in place for a severe torrential rainfall event across the central Mediterranean. Areas around the Tyrrhenian sea and the area between Sicily and Tunisia will receive extreme amounts of rainfall. Additionally, severe thunderstorms are expected, with the potential for large hail, severe straight line winds and tornadoes.” (Severe-weather.eu, Friday 02 Nov)
I’ve not seen any reports of how the boat-people are faring amid all this chaos in the Med? Not very well, would be my guess.
Philippines: At least 15 people have been killed and dozens more are missing after Typhoon Yutu hit the Philippine on Tuesday, say authorities. The deaths were mostly due to landslides caused by heavy rains in the mountainous region of Cordillera in the northern part of the country, said the national disaster risk reduction management council. (Guardian) Downgraded to a TD, Yutu is headed for the Chinese mainland.
Paraguay: Over 10,000 people have been displaced in the capital, Asunción, by flooding from the Paraguay River. Further rain and flooding is expected, with more flooding and evacuations likely. (Floodlist)
Sudan: “Torrential rain and ensuing floods that started on Wednesday evening (31 Oct) are still continuing and hindering life in a number of places in Red Sea state. 1 man drowned in the eastern part of Port Sudan. 5 others sustained injuries when they attempted to cross streets in the city and were swept away by floods. In Arbaat, north of Port Sudan, the water and electricity supply halted. Hundreds of livestock and poultry drowned. Residents expressed fears that the flooding and the cadavers would lead to a health disaster.” (from Floodlist)
Jordan: Civil Defence authorities said that at least 21 people died as a result of flooding in Zarqa Ma’in. The victims were in a bus that was swept away by flood water, according to local media. Flooding also destroyed a bridge on the Dead Sea Cliffs. Around 35 people were rescued and several are thought to be still missing. Qatar, Syria, Iran and Saudi Arabia have all been hit with torrential rain and flash-floods in the last few days. (Floodlist)
Russia: At least 6 people have died and 1 missing in flooding that has affected parts of Krasnodar Krai region of southwestern Russia (on the Black Sea coast) over the last few days. Around 30 villages and towns, as well as the cities of Tuapse and Sochi have been affected by the high waters caused by heavy rains that hit the area from 24 October. Electricity and running water supplies have been interrupted, as have local train services. Some roads have been damaged and a bridge along the Tuapse-Maikop highway destroyed. Warnings have been issued for further severe weather, including thunderstorms, hail and winds over the next few days. (Floodlist)
Australia: With hot desert air pushing into the south, Adelaide could top out at 36C today (01 Nov) while parts of Sydney could exceed 38C on Friday. Inland areas of South Australia, NSW and Queensland could be even hotter, exceeding 40C. Experts have now issued fire warnings across the country as gusty conditions combine with temperatures which are tipped to be 10C above average. Early in the week, severe storms could drench Melbourne, Sydney, Adelaide and Hobart, Tasmania. (from News.com.au)
Scotland: is expecting severe gales from the outer bands as Post-Tropical Storm, formerly Hurricane Oscar, passes north of Cape Wrath on its way to clobber the Faroe Islands this weekend. (Severe-weather.eu)
Visuals: Climate & Extreme Weather News #142, #143: http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=5FIi4m0Pr3M&t=1066s
The Terminal Beach….
Yellowstone: Steamboat #25… a record, again – and the biggest eruption so far this year lasting two hours, of the largest geyser in the park, that normally manages only one or two wet farts in an entire year. Accompanied by earthquakes, multiple smaller geyser eruptions, continuing ground vibration, ‘drumbeats’, ground uplift and mysteriously missing or fudged USGS data. Also, somebody went through her garbage cans… .(M. Greeley)
Armaggedon: The Trump administration is trying to push through an additional $90 million in funding for NASA’s Planetary Defense Coordination Office, the two-year-old special division tasked with saving the world from a major asteroid impact. Conspiracy theorists are asking, what’s the rush? This old cynic thinks it looks more like concealed funding for Trump’s loony-tunes Space Wars program. So far, the Japanese have had most success in actually landing on an asteroid and doing stuff that works. But fear not, the Hollywood plan to nuke anything over 140 meters is not the object: just a nudge will do, apparently. There are thought to be 25 thousand asteroids that size that could eventually impact the Earth. (Politico)
Clouds: another day of bright sunshine and those bright, blobby clouds are back shoaling again (see below, and two days ago, above). They’re a daily occurrence, together with this unnaturally blue sky, like it’s been painted on, unless it’s completely overcast and rainy. You know, I should not be surprised to meet one coming along the cycle path at head-height through our park. Indeed, I shouldn’t be at all surprised if it spoke to me… they seem to have characters all their own, and so low-hanging. I wondered if there is a physical limit to how low these type of clouds can get? Some seem no higher than maybe 400 feet up. What do they want from us?
It’s the first of November and our famous local starling clouds are back! Maybe not in such great numbers as I have seen them before, but an encouraging display of synchronised aerial draughtsmanship as thousands came home to roost under the pier yesterday at sunset. Several have discovered my bird table, too, dammit. Poor sparrows!
UK: A comparison exercise by the Meteorological Office shows that on a range of indicators the average temperature in the UK has risen by 0.89 degrees C since the 1970s. Shorter frost periods, warmer winters, hotter hot days, longer heatwaves, more ‘tropical nights’ when the temperature doesn’t fall anywhere below 20C and heavier rainfall totals, they say, are all consistent with predictions of global warming. Well done, chaps.
Your Gran reported recently that the river management authority here just installed a new gauge, that’s six feet higher than the previous one. I was just out there yesterday by the monitoring station and watched a group of young guys in waterproofs and safety gear staging a rescue exercise in the water. They had a brand-new shiny red van marked “Flood & River Rescue Service” towing a smart new Zodiac inflatable with a big outboard.
This is a river whose level is supposedly managed from a hydropower barrage upstream. Do they know something we don’t? Should I sell?