Friday, September 18, 2015

P&D Gazette

Editor's Note:  I'm not in harmony with every author here since some of these article are from left wing publications, but I think it's occasionally  valuable to see the logic - or lack therein - in their views. RK

Green Gazette

India and China don’t want to cut carbon, but do object to “doublespeak” - a little shindig for the last couple of days with like minded developing countries (called LMDCs), like China, and announced they did not want any obligatory stuff from the UN about cutting carbon emissions. I quite like the Indian environment minister’s way of phrasing it:“All countries have decided to take action, but that action is voluntary and nationally determined, not internationally determined,” India’s environment and forests minister Prakash Javadekar said addressing the negotiators this afternoon.“Paris can become a festival if the world accepts this...

Proof-positive that AGW is not science… “World court should rule on climate science to quash sceptics, says Philippe Sands…” This needs to be quashed… with extreme prejudice… World court should rule on climate science to quash sceptics, says Philippe Sands International Court of Justice ruling would settle the scientific dispute and pave the way for future legal cases on climate change, says high-profile lawyer False claims from climate sceptics…

Magical Thinking in Indian Agriculture -India’s agriculture minister had some eyebrow-raising advice for the more than 600 million people in his country that depend on agriculture for a living. According to the minister, sending seeds good vibrations and the right feelings will help produce higher yields.

Peter Wadhams was wrong – Arctic sea ice still there, no record low this year - Last week on September 11th I was the first to call the Arctic Sea Ice minimum. It seems both NSIDC and NASA Goddard agree with my initial claim. Dr. Peter Wadhams had famously claimed that Arctic Sea Ice would be completely gone this year, even Gavin said it was ridiculous: Clearly he’s been proven wrong

Climate Scientists give up on science, talk tobacco, want to jail skeptics - Poor climate scientists know they can’t win the science debate against the engineers, geologists, chemists and physicists who are better scientists, better informed, mostly unfunded and unleashed all over the Internet. To avoid coughing up the“overwhelming evidence” the climate experts say they have, but can’t seem to find, they are pulling out the Panzers, resorting to pleas for RICO investigations. Treat the skeptical scientists like Racketeers, they say! And what’s their evidence for this conspiracy of corruption… oh lordy, these people are scientists, they must have emails,......

My Take - Stalin and his junk science lackey Lysenko would have been proud!

Claim: Global warming will unleash Deadly Swarms of Giant Arctic Mosquitoes - The Royal Society has published a study which claims that global warming will unleash deadly swarms of giant arctic mosquitoes. According to the Royal Society; Abstract Climate change is altering environmental temperature, a factor that influences ectothermic organisms by controlling rates of physiological processes. Demographic effects of warming, however, are…

My Take - Hooey!

The Urban Heat Island (UHI) is mapped in major U.S. cities - UGA study ranks US cities based on the urban heat island effect on temperatures From the UNIVERSITY OF GEORGIA Highlights Urban heat island (UHI) intensities were estimated for the fifty most populous cities in the USA using PRISM climate data. The urban morphologies of the cities were quantified using spatial metrics and the NLCD 2006…

NAO and Then - Anthony recently highlighted a new study which purports to find that the North Atlantic Oscillation (NAO) is synchronized to the fluctuations in solar activity. The study is entitled“Solar forcing synchronizes decadal North Atlantic climate variability”. The“North Atlantic Oscillation” (NAO) refers to the phenomenon that the temperatures (and hence…

Africa

Life on the Congo River - In a country with crumbling infrastructure, cargo barges are vital for ferrying goods and unofficial passengers along the Democratic Republic of Congo’s aquatic superhighway.

Australia

Australia Knows: Better to Ditch a Bad Leader Quick - A. Coyne, Nat'l Post No system is perfect. But between dumping leaders prematurely, and being saddled with them eternally, I know which one is the lesser evil.

Where Do Australia's Liberals Go Now?-Considering that Tony Abbott became leader of the Liberal Party of Australia almost by accident, he proved surprisingly difficult to dislodge. Abbott, who was toppled as prime minister on 14 September, won the support of a bare majority of a divided party room six years ago, defeating Malcolm Turnbull, the man who has now usurped him. In four years as opposition leader, Abbott’s ruthless negativity brought down two Labor prime ministers but damaged his own standing; as prime minister, his relentless search for enemies alienated a swath of voters.

China

The U.S. Will Get Tough With China... Eventually - Xi Jinping and Barack Obama will have a lot to talk about when the Chinese president makes his first state visit to Washington next week, which will take place between Xi’s tech-focused swing through Seattle and an appearance at the U.N. General Assembly in New York. Possible issues on the table for the two leaders include, but aren’t limited to, growing tensions over China’s claims in the South China Sea, growing animosity between China and U.S.-ally Japan, the nuclear truculence of China’s troublesome ally North Korea, U.S. accusations of Chinese cyber-espionage...

How Will a Wounded China Lash Out?- Some observers perceive a silver lining in China's difficulties, believing that a country preoccupied with internal problems will be less aggressive and require fewer diplomatic, economic and military resources to hold it in check. That is wishful thinking rooted in a radical misreading of China's domestic political dynamics.

European Union

Europe Discovers a New Geography - The EU’s creation and evolution represents the ultimate fruit of the U.S.-led victory in World War II. It should not give way to the dementia of nationalist ideologies.

Hungary's Orban 'Wins' the Refugee Crisis - In many respects, Hungarian Prime Minister Viktor Orbn has emerged as the political victor in the refugee crisis. Voters support his hardline stance and other Eastern European countries are following his suit.

Serbia Needs the European Union - The experience with the two last enlargement rounds has shown how important it is that EU accession candidates are given sufficient time and support to establish true rule of law. We are still coping with the consequences of badly enforced legal reforms.

The Conservative Case for the European Union - D. Rohac, Foreign Policy The rejection of the EU has placed some sincere conservative defenders of free markets and democracy into the company of the most unsavory undercurrents of European politics. Lest conservatives are to become “useful idiots” of enemies of free society, they have to rethink their opposition to the EU — and, in fact, come to its defense.

My Take - In an attempt to find some overwhelming evidence of the value of the EU this author seems to base his whole argument on this statement -

"But being critical of various elements of the European project should not stop conservatives from appreciating its successes. For almost 70 years, Europe’s great powers have been at peace. By historical standards, the era of European integration is the closest that European nations have come to a limited, constitutional, democratic government. For all its “socialist”excesses, the degree of economic openness in the EU is without precedent. The EU has helped post-communist countries establish democratic institutions, liberalize their markets, and offer a safeguard against Russian expansionism."

That's a lie of omission. Every one of these reasons had nothing to do with the creation of the EU. Every bit of this stability - including the very creation of the EU - was a direct result of the Bretton Woods agreement between the United States and its allies at the end of WWII. Allies who have been a stunningly ungrateful lot ever since, especially the French who - in spite of Charles De Gaulle’s really were Nazi collaborators. Why else would they have tried Marshall Petain for treason? As for the EU's "socialist" excesses - multiculturalism is one of those excesses and it's going to destroy Europe. Europe, much like Russia, is breeding itself out of existance. By allowing all these Muslim immigrants into Europe they're truly speeding up their demise. At some point if Europeans which to remain European they will be forced to resort to civil war. European nations are headed into a period of civil war that will shock the world.

Of course war can be avoided. They can surrender and submit to Sharia. But if anyone believes that will stop the violence they're delusional. Muslims hate other Muslims as badly - if not more so - than they do everyone else. They consider other Muslims of other sects to be heretics deserving death, and the Koran requires jihad against them. That's the Middle East - Midievil tribal societies filled with hateful Muslims killing each other - for centuries - only now they have modern transportation and weapons. Changing the location of that hate won't change anything except the location.

Germany

Germany's Real Refugee Crisis- Germany is in crisis mode. Every day trains packed with refugees arrive from the south, and despite tightened border controls, as many as a million are expected by the end of the year. For all the warm and open talk coming from Chancellor Angela Merkel, everyone knows that the financial and social costs of absorbing so many people will be considerable. Germany and its less-welcoming European partners are treating the wave of refugees, many of whom come from Syria or other parts of the Middle East, primarily as a humanitarian crisis. But it is also a sec...

Weimar and Contemporary Germany- Berlin the “Golden Twenties” have long been remembered, nostalgically, as a time of cultural and political regeneration. But today Germany's capital dreams the dreams of that decade particularly vividly. The city's current reputation for creativity, diversity and nightlife mean that the comparisons are as endless as they are inevitable. People are drawn to Berlin now just as W.H. Auden, Bertolt Brecht, and George Grosz were then. “Dancing on the Volcano”, an absorbing exhibition inspired by a 1938 film of the same name, further extends the flattering parallels. Both

Why Merkel Changed Her Mind - Politico EU Angela Merkel’s abrupt decision to reinstate controls on Germany’s border with Austria followed a hectic weekend during which the chancellor faced intense pressure from state and local officials expected to house and feed the growing wave of asylum seekers heading to the country.

The Imam's Curse - At dawn on May 14, 2011, more than two dozen federal agents and local police officers converged on a working-class neighborhood near the Miami airport and surrounded a small green-and-white stucco building—Masjid Miami, one of the city’s oldest mosques. Police sealed off a two-block radius, and F.B.I. agents, some armed with AR-15 rifles, assembled outside the door. Inside, eight men were kneeling for the first prayer of the day. When agents called for them to open up, one of the worshippers, a former police officer, went out and asked them to wait until ...

India

Smuggling India's Antiquities - The Diplomat Indian Tourism and Culture Minister Mahesh Sharma’s recent admission in parliament that eight cases of antiquities theft were reported from State-protected monuments and museums across three states over the last year, has yet again brought to the fore the fraught issue of pilferage and smuggling of art treasures from Indian shores. According to Global Financial Integrity, a Washington-based advocacy group, illegal trade in paintings, sculptures, and other artifacts is one of the world’s most lucrative criminal enterprises, estimated at $6 billion a year. And I...

Middle East

Beirut Chokes on Its Own Filth - Since the time of antiquity, almost every place in the Middle East has suffered from way too much government, but Lebanon is an intriguing exception. It’s the one country in the region that doesn’t have nearly enough.
Why the Low Expectations for Iran Deal? - Instead of viewing the agreement as an opportunity to at least explore the possibility of ending thirty-five years of rivalry and rancor, advocates of a new hard line are guaranteeing the agreement achieves the absolute minimum. Even worse, their counsel could even jeopardize the success of the JCPOA itself

Present a United Front on Iran Deal - As Republican presidential candidates bicker over who would tear up the Iran nuclear agreement fastest -- a spectacle which will be on full display at tonight's debate at the Reagan Library -- events last week in Congress made it all but certain that the deal will be a defining feature of global politics for the next decade.

A Brief History of Syrian War - To understand the Syrian refugee crisis — the moral horror that has captured the attention of the world— you really need to understand what caused it. These 4 million Syrian refugees are a direct result of their country's civil war, which is perhaps the most destructive conflict on Earth today, and which has displaced several million more Syrians within Syria.

Pick Your Poison, Erdogan - The American Interest In their early days Erdogan and his party made great strides. The Turkish columnist Metin Munir summed up the public’s frustration best when he wrote, “Erdogan helped get rid of the military. Who will help now to get rid of him?”

Trouble Brews in Tajikistan - Recent deadly attacks and instability in Tajikistan, which have left 27 people dead, have prompted worries in neighboring countries, which share similar vulnerabilities and weaknesses.

Egypt Redefines Its Sense of Regional Purpose - In recent years, Egypt has paid a high price for two developments. The first was the uprising against Hosni Mubarak in 2011, which set dynamics in motion that transformed the country and created ongoing instability. The second was the transformation of Egypt’s regional role thanks to the Obama administration's pivot away from the Middle East. Today the country is facing major challenges: a burgeoning terrorist threat, particularly in the Sinai; a vulnerable economy, thanks in part to the decline in tourism amid a perception that the country is unsafe..

The Shady Family Behind America's Iran Lobby - When the world’s major powers struck a deal over Iran’s nuclear program in Vienna in July, it represented a victory not just for the Islamic Republic, which has now been granted international legitimacy as a nuclear threshold state, but also for a small but increasingly influential lobby in America, one which has long sought rapprochement between Washington and Tehran and now seeks to leverage a successfully concluded nuclear deal as a means to that end. This Iran lobby, publicly represented by the National Iranian American Council (NIAC), has become a staun......

Can Obama and Bibi Help Each Other Out?- After seven years of soap opera-style dramatics, Netanyahu and Obama won't change their dysfunctional relationship easily, or perhaps at all. But as counterintuitive as it may seem, particularly after the bitter battle over the Iran deal, the U.S.-Israeli relationship may actually improve in the months remaining on the president's clock. Obama wants to make nice - not because he likes Netanyahu or his policies; but because it serves Obama's interests in his final year. Here's why.

How Pakistan Protects Itself From Sectarian War - Arif Rafiq, TNI An Iraq-style sectarian war has always been unlikely in Pakistan.

The Exodus of Iraq's Minorities-Large waves of emigration are dramatically depleting Iraq’s minority populations, especially Christians, with dire consequences for the country's future diversity.

The Rubble of Obama's Syria Policy-I kept asking why the administration wasn’t doing more to help my people. Then the Iran deal came through, and I knew.

Obama Gets It Right and Wrong on Iran-Chance to engage beyond nuclear deal will be lost if US reverts to strategy of coercive containment…..

Refugees Overwhelm Obama's Plan- The Obama administration is preparing to announce a plan to admit more refugees over the next two years, but at this point the numbers being proposed are too small to relieve the crisis streaming out of Syria.

Russia

Russians Don't Want Another War- Moscow’s admitting there are a few of its soldiers in Syria, but it’s wary of a public that doesn’t want them there.

Putin Stumps Obama...Again - Once again, President Obama and his foreign policy team are stumped. Why is Vladimir Putin pouring troops and weaponry into Syria? After all, as Secretary of State John Kerry has thrice told his Russian counterpart, Sergei Lavrov, it is only making things worse.

United Kingdom

Corbyn Brings Hatred Into British Mainstream - Jonathan Tobin, Commentary Even if Corbyn never gets closer to the prime minister’s seat on the government’s front bench in Westminster than his current perch as leader of the opposition of parliament, the elevation of a person who holds the views that he has embraced sends a chilling message for the future of British Jewry and that of Europe as a whole at a time of increasing anti-Semitism. What the Corbyn Effect Means for UK Military.

5 Things Corbyn Has Right - Some of the criticisms that have been levelled at Corbyn in the past couple of days are unfair. He is neither a Communist nor a “threat to national security.” He is a self-described socialist. In his republicanism, his anti-colonialism, his borderline pacifism, and his suspicion of big business, he represents an old and honorable, if occasionally misguided, strand of British radicalism, which extends back to Bertrand Russell, Keir Hardie, and beyond...

Cameron's Silence and the Fallout of Brexit - The British government is leading the country inexorably out of the EU. That would have serious geostrategic consequences for Britain, Europe, and Ireland.

Corbyn and Trump: Politics of Parallel Realities - The election this past weekend of Jeremy Corbyn to lead the British Labour Party is a huge political development in the United Kingdom. Mr. Corbyn is not just liberal; he’s hard left, having expressed his support for (among other things) unilateral nuclear disarmament, the nationalization of some of Britain’s biggest industries, and talks with Hamas and Hezbollah, as well as opposing bombing ISIS. He may well be the most left-wing leader in the history of the Labour Party, which is saying something.

Labour Tips It All Over - Shortly before the last election a group of Labour MPs approached Ed Miliband to ask him what he would do if he lost. They suggested he could provide stability by staying on as leader for a while, as Michael Howard had done, and that his last duty should be to oversee an inquiry into what went wrong at the general election. Miliband, still convinced he would win, did not entertain the idea, to the dismay of his policy chief, Jon Cruddas. After the election, Cruddas decided to go ahead and do an inquiry anyway

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