Iowa Hothouse

January 4, 2012

The horror of Iowa:

No wobbling of that sort from Santorum — he’s an out-and-out denier.
“There is no such thing as global warming,” he told a smiling Glenn Beck on Fox News in June 2011.
That same month, he told Rush Limbaugh that climate change is a liberal conspiracy: “It’s just an excuse for more government control of your life and I’ve never been for any scheme or even accepted the junk science behind the whole narrative.”

One would hope the mass of US peoples who vote can see through the shit rain coming from Iowa — Mitt Romney, not Rick Perry, should go home to assess the results if a twitchy, bat-shit crazy Rick Santorum could foam-up a near-tie in yesterday’s near-useless Iowa caucuses.

(Illustration found here).

Even as these self-promoting assholes parade through the GOP elimination contest, climate change is still eating away at the fabric of life — in denial of a process that can make your nose bleed is a criminal act that harms every air-sucking person on this earth.
And anyone who calls it ‘junk science’ is worse than a warmonger.
And in Rick Santorum‘s case it’s all about the money.
From Think Progress last October:

On the campaign trail, Rick Santorum says his career since the Senate has been a paid commentary role at Fox News and as a fellow at the Ethics and Public Policy Center.
But a mandatory disclosure requirement for presidential candidates reveals something new: Santorum has maintained his lifestyle through a well-paid consulting gig with Consol Energy Inc and a lobbying firm called American Continental Group.

According to the disclosure, Santorum is paid more than $330,000 for his work on behalf of Consol Energy, American Continental Group, and a public relations firm called the Clapham Group.
He was paid $217,000 from the Ethics and Public Policy Center, and $239,000 for his contributions to Fox News in 2010 and the beginning of 2011.

Santorum might be even more ass-holish and slimy than Newt Gingrich, who by the way, received an underwhelming fourth-place finish in Iowa — he’s history, and as a historian, Newt knows.

While all the airwaves were filled with Iowa corn-fed shit: On Christmas Day, December 25th, the temperature at the Amundsen-Scott South Pole site soared to an all-time record high of 9.9°F (-12.3°C) at 3:50 p.m. local time, eclipsing the former record of 7.5°F (-13.6°C) set on December 27, 1978. The low temperature on December 25th was a mild (relatively!) 0°F (-17.8°C). Records at the site began in January 1957. Its elevation is 9,301 feet (2,835 meters). (h/t wunderground.com).
And here in the sweet US of A, the environment is also warmer: Aided by a strong warm surge toward the end of the month, new U.S. daily high temperature records exceeded daily cold records in December by a ratio of 1.8 to 1, a margin of 80 percent. (from CapitalClimate).

And here on the Left Coast, the warmth spreads: The mercury hit 85 degrees in Woodland Hills, breaking a record of 84 set in 1994. Burbank topped out at 80 degrees and Saugus in northern Los Angeles County had a high of 83 degrees. “It’s been nice and toasty for the holiday season,” said National Weather Service meteorologist David Sweet. (sfgate.com).
Which in turn could create a human disaster.
Also from sfgate.com:

There was about as much snow on the ground last July 4 as there is now at historic Phillips Station off Highway 50 near the Sierra at Tahoe resort.
Some say the skiing was better then, too.
Frank Gehrke, chief snow surveyor for the California Department of Water Resources, might have had better luck counting butterflies than taking snow measurements, but he nevertheless found a tiny patch of glaciated material shaded by trees.

“That’s the lowest January measurement ever,” Gehrke said. “With pretty much no fall storms at all, that’s not a surprise.”

Lake Oroville, the primary storage reservoir for the State Water Project, is at 72 percent of capacity, which is 114 percent of normal for this time.
Shasta Lake, which is part of the U.S. Bureau of Reclamation’s Central Valley Project and is the largest reservoir in the state, is currently at 68 percent of capacity, or 106 percent of normal.

Up here on California’s northern coast the situation isn’t so much warmth, but wet — very little rain so far this season, and if it does rain, most of the time it’s sprinkle-like and just damp.
Old timers tell me they haven’t seen this type of weather in years, if ever.

A press release last November from the National Center for Atmospheric Research (h/t Climate Progress):

Spurred by a warming climate, daily record high temperatures occurred twice as often as record lows over the last decade across the continental United States, new research shows.
The ratio of record highs to lows is likely to increase dramatically in coming decades if emissions of greenhouse gases continue to climb.
“Climate change is making itself felt in terms of day-to-day weather in the United States,” says Gerald Meehl, the lead author and a senior scientist at the National Center for Atmospheric Research (NCAR).
“The ways these records are being broken show how our climate is already shifting.”

The modeling results indicate that if nations continue to increase their emissions of greenhouse gases in a “business as usual” scenario, the U.S. ratio of daily record high to record low temperatures would increase to about 20-to-1 by mid-century and 50-to-1 by 2100.
The mid-century ratio could be much higher if emissions rose at an even greater pace, or it could be about 8-to-1 if emissions were reduced significantly, the model showed.

Hurrah, now on to New Hampshire!

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