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Tony Grist

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It Continues [Jan. 8th, 2010|10:26 am]
Tony Grist
The pundits are scurrying around the TV studios to assure us that present conditions in no way challenge their theories of global warming. I don't believe them.
 
Yesterday temperatures in parts of Britain dropped to within a degree or two of the temperature in Antarctica.

We had to go shopping yesterday or we and the in-laws would have run out of essential supplies- which In my father-in-law's case means Muller fruit corners. The car was nestled into a sort of a bunker outside the house- and I had to dig it out. Then, when we came home at the end of the afternoon, I had to dig it back in again. The roads round town are dodgy and they haven't gritted the sidestreets since the last fall of snow. They haven't collected the rubbish either. We didn't risk driving down Dot and Eric's street. Ailz parked at the top of it and I carried their groceries the final quarter mile on foot.

I'd been warned we might find the supermarket shelves stripped back to the bare metal. This wasn't the case. Sainsbury's Oldham  had all the essentials. A cheery,  "look at us surviving the blitz" spirit was in evidence. A sales assistant we know by sight proudly told us about her walk to work. Christmas puddings were on sale at 75% off- and I treated us to what would have otherwise been a very expensive one. It gave me vivid dreams. 
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Comments:
[User Picture]From: veronica_milvus
2010-01-08 10:37 am (UTC)
Well done! KEEP CALM AND CARRY ON! It's plucky determination like yours that made Scott of the Antarctic rightly famous... oh, wait...
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[User Picture]From: shewhomust
2010-01-08 10:50 am (UTC)
Indeed. Did you see this piece in yesterday's Guardian, which says much the same thing?
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[User Picture]From: shewhomust
2010-01-08 10:48 am (UTC)
The pundits are scurrying around the TV studios to assure us that present conditions in no way challenge their theories of global warming. I don't believe them.

Fair enough. But bear in mind a) that global warming has been linked with perturbed weather (more severe hurricanes and more of them, for example) and b) that the planet as a whole growing warmer doesn't mean that every corner of it grows warmer. Britain has quite a warm climate considering how far north we are, and this is in part thanks to the Gulf Stream. If that changes its route (as it has in the past) global warming could leave us colder, not warmer.

It is, in other words, more complicated than TV ususally allows for.
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[User Picture]From: poliphilo
2010-01-08 11:05 am (UTC)
I'm strongly inclined to regard the whole global warming thing as a hoax. Evidence is mounting that the Climate Change scientists have been doctoring the evidence....
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[User Picture]From: michaleen
2010-01-08 12:14 pm (UTC)
I firmly believe that humans will have the future they deserve and if they, in their infinite wisdom, decide to chuck decades of scientific analysis in favor of the anecdotes of a single cold winter then more power to them.

Someone has to look out for the oil industry.

And the cockroach is an all-around superior design, anyway.
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[User Picture]From: poliphilo
2010-01-08 12:56 pm (UTC)
But what if the scientific analysis is dodgy- as some of us think it is? There are vested interests on both sides of the debate.

Back in the 70s the experts were confidently predicting a new ice age.

Man made climate change has become the principal dogma of a new orthodoxy- with adherents who are witch-burningly intense in their beliefs. Orthodoxies should always be probed, tickled and mocked.
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[User Picture]From: pondhopper
2010-01-08 01:15 pm (UTC)
Congratulations on a successful shopping trip and on finding those bargain Christmas puddings.
:)
I think global warming is misnamed. It should be "global climate change/shift". Yes, there are vested interests on both sides of the coin but there have been very real changes documented without any interest other than pure science.
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From: ex_redrain
2010-01-08 01:58 pm (UTC)
I agree with you about it being misnamed. It largely means greater and greater variations in weather, with extremes in heat, cold, and storm systems.
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[User Picture]From: suemars
2010-01-08 03:27 pm (UTC)
my son was trying to explain to me the global warming thing, which lots of people think is a hoax. i've read that this has happened before, i don't fully understand. but it warms, artic ice melts, then that floods thing and makes it cold again. i don't think they know anything at all. they can't even predict the weather accurately for the next week.
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[User Picture]From: poliphilo
2010-01-08 04:15 pm (UTC)
The climate will change. It always has done. The big question is whether any of the shifts we're seeing now are our fault.
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[User Picture]From: arielstarshadow
2010-01-08 04:11 pm (UTC)
You may not have seen my post yesterday, but here's a good explanation of why you're getting slammed with cold temps and snow:

http://www.dailykos.com/storyonly/2010/1/6/822520/-Freak-Current-Takes-Gulf-Stream-to-Greenland

Also? The cessation of the Gulf Stream is actually considered by some as a possible consequence of global warming. The real problem is that they never should have coined that particular term. What they should have called it was/is "climatic shift" because that's what will actually happen. The different climates will move and shift - so some areas of the world will actually get hotter while others get colder. Some will get wetter, others will get dryer.
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[User Picture]From: poliphilo
2010-01-08 04:18 pm (UTC)
I don't have a problem with climate shift. The historical/geological record shows it's happening all the time. The question is whether the present changes are caused by human activity. I suspect not.
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[User Picture]From: redatt
2010-01-08 04:30 pm (UTC)
The pundits are scurrying around the TV studios to assure us that present conditions in no way challenge their theories of global warming.

Well, since current theories of global warming/climate change predict, if I recall correctly, colder winters and wetter summers for the UK, I guess it's true, the present conditions in no way challenge their theories. Quite the opposite.
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[User Picture]From: poliphilo
2010-01-08 06:36 pm (UTC)
Fair enough. :)
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[User Picture]From: litchick
2010-01-08 04:45 pm (UTC)
http://news.bbc.co.uk/2/hi/in_depth/8447023.stm

I think I can see you guys driving to the store! ha.
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[User Picture]From: poliphilo
2010-01-08 04:52 pm (UTC)
That's such a gorgeous image!
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[User Picture]From: petercampbell
2010-01-08 06:56 pm (UTC)
All the fuss about global warming reminds me a bit of the dire warnings of how the world's computer networks would crash in the year 2000, and we'd all end up dying in a computer generated nuclear holocaust (or something like that).

I think, as a species, we just like to scare ourselves with the thought of impending catastrophe sometimes.
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[User Picture]From: oakmouse
2010-01-08 10:06 pm (UTC)
Good point. I think we as a species also like to be able to flex our muscles and boast about how important and dangerous we are. "Look at us --- we can completely muck up the climate of the entire planet and still take time off for lunch!" *g*
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[User Picture]From: daisytells
2010-01-08 07:22 pm (UTC)
Hurrah for the puddings! So you did not miss out on Christmas entirely - just had it a bit late. Seriously, avoid shoveling snow as much as you can. People suffer heart attacks shoveling heavy snow. By the way, it was not predicted, but it is snowing rather heavily here right now. The forecast had been for "flurries". I remember once forty years or so ago when they predicted "flurries" and we got a blizzard!
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[User Picture]From: poliphilo
2010-01-09 10:22 am (UTC)
I did as much shovelling as I needed to do to get the car running. Otherwise I'm going to leave it alone. It seems to me that the best way of coping with this sort of weather is to sit tight and do as little as possible.
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[User Picture]From: oakmouse
2010-01-08 10:11 pm (UTC)
Yay for the bargain Christmas pudding!

The weather is being rather epic here too. We're having temps in the teens Fahrenheit, and people are terrified that the snowstorm predicted for Sunday, with wind chill factors in the below-zero F range, is going to be the Snowpocalypse. The old guard down at the Masonic lodge, though, say this used to be normal in the 1940s and 1950s, and that it's only since some time in the 60s that the winters got milder than this.

I'm enjoying it except for the task of keeping our steps and walk clean of snow, which we have to do as they're so steep that otherwise the mailman won't come up and we can't get down. But then I work from home and haven't got to commute in it.
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[User Picture]From: poliphilo
2010-01-09 10:24 am (UTC)
One of the advantages of growing old is that you acquire historical perspective: you've seen it all before and things just don't scare you as much.
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[User Picture]From: ideealisme
2010-01-08 11:35 pm (UTC)
Well now that we've cast off the shackles of primitive belief in the Imaginary Friend and are self-actualised beings, we have to have somewhere to put our strange, unslakeable fear of encroaching Armageddon...
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[User Picture]From: poliphilo
2010-01-09 10:26 am (UTC)
Yes, that's another reason why I'm a sceptic. Human beings seen to have an inbuilt predilection for apocalyptic scenarios. The world is always about to end for one reason or another- and it never does.
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[User Picture]From: methodius
2010-01-09 01:25 pm (UTC)
Less global warming, but, to paraphrase Bob Dyland, the climes they are a-changin'

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