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President Obama's paltry efforts to make people believe we can "adapt" to Global Warming is akin to the civil defense efforts of the 1950's trying to make people believe we could fight and "survive" a nuclear war.

Most of you probably don't remember the "duck and cover" training school kids got in the 50's and 60's to "protect" themselves from the 20 megaton air burst that was going to vaporize everything within a 3 mile radius of ground zero and completely destroy everything in a 15 mile radius.  Yep, after the nuclear attack you were supposed to crawl out from under your school desk and do... what?  I never quite got that second part.  What were you supposed to do when you crawled out of the rubble with a million or so dead people all around and no electricity, no gasoline, no food, no water, no government, and streets full of armed survivalists who've just had their dreams come true so can they can suck up any remaining resources and kill anyone who gets in their way?

Of course, this whole effort was total bull shit.  The real goal, was to make Americans believe we could fight and win a nuclear war on Saturday, and on Sunday everyone could go to their little churches and learn how Jesus loves apple pie, the flag, and the American way of life.  

Once we all believed nuclear war was winnable and the Ruskies were about to come ashore on Coney Island, then the Military Industrial Complex was free to rob America's treasury and future so nobody could ever take our freedom fries from us.

And here we go again.

Last week, Secretary of Agriculture Tom Vilsack announced one of the administrations new plans to address Global Warming.

Regional Hubs for Risk Adaptation and Mitigation to Climate Change will be located in seven locations around the country, Vilsack told reporters. He said farmers and ranchers have a direct interest in combating climate change because of the adverse impacts of storms and droughts on land.
This was followed up by the Presidents announcement yesterday of a billion dollars for his “climate resilience fund”.
President Obama said here Friday that he will propose a $1 billion fund in his fiscal 2015 budget to help communities prepare for the effects of climate change and to fund research and technology to protect against its impact.
1 $billion?! Really?  The F22 Raptor fighter jet has had over $50 billion in just cost overruns, and we can only find $1 billion to try and stop the collapse of civilization over the coming decades?!

Trying to "adapt" to Global Warming is like the French aristocrats thinking they were going to be able to "adapt" to the guillotine.  Maybe Senator Inhofe was right when he said Global Warming was a cruel hoax.  Only the cruel hoax will be on civilization if they're led to believe that we can "adapt" to a new climate that is 5C warmer in 50 years and rising faster than it is today.

The fossil fuel giants have bought their politicians, the right wing propaganda machine has it's army of Tea bagger deniers, and the media continues with presenting flat earth and round earth points of view as both equally valid.  I believe the only way to get out of this mess now is to make Alternative energies cheaper than carbon fossil energies.

President Obama made a big deal out of how he was going to bypass congress if they refused to take action.  President Lincoln signed an executive order (Emancipation Proclamation) to end slavery in the U.S. and all President Obama can come up with is climate zones and a $billion to save civilization?

With one stroke of the pen, President Obama could order all Federal buildings to reduce their electricity usage by 10% and to purchase wind and solar power for at least 50% of their electricity usage by 2020.  With one stroke of the pen the president could order   50% of all new federal car purchases be 0 emissions and the remaining purchases to exceed fuel efficiency standards by 2020.

Almost a year before John Glenn made America's first orbital space flight, President Kennedy vowed to put a man on the moon within 9 years.  Where is President Obama's bold effort to make NASA the new carbonless energy technology developer for the 21st century?

We need bold action to stop the slow motion disaster that has already started, not feel good BS that we'll just fix you up after the train hits you.

Giving the false impression that we can "adapt" to Global Warming is almost as bad as denying Global Warming.  This "adaptation" approach will fall apart quickly when the right wing propaganda machine starts talking about clean coal, clean fracked NG and oil, clean tar sands, and clean CO2 to help forests grow.

No Mr. President, there is no "adaptation" to this disaster, only prevention, and last week you took a step backward.

Originally posted to pollwatcher on Sat Feb 15, 2014 at 10:05 AM PST.

Also republished by Progressive Policy Zone and Frustrati.

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Comment Preferences

  •  Apparently our Democratic President hasn't read (12+ / 0-)

    the Democratic Party platform plank on climate change:

    We know that global climate change is one of the biggest threats of this generation -- an economic, environmental, and national security catastrophe in the making. We affirm the science of climate change, commit to significantly reducing the pollution that causes climate change, and know we have to meet this challenge by driving smart policies that lead to greater growth in clean energy generation and result in a range of economic and social benefits.

    When you triangulate everything, you can't even roll downhill...

    by PhilJD on Sat Feb 15, 2014 at 10:12:35 AM PST

    •  Dec. 5 ,2013 the president directed federal (2+ / 0-)
      Recommended by:
      pollwatcher, NedSparks

      agencies to increase their use of renewable energy sources, wind, solar and hydro, for 20% of their electrical usage by 2020. That ODS is stunning. Obama must be all  things and do all things.

      •  That doesn't even begin to scratch the surface (3+ / 0-)

        of what's needed, and the 2010 time-frame suggests a leisure to act which we simply do not have. Not too many people are suggesting that Mr. Obama has done literally nothing at all to address climate change, only that the steps he has taken are laughably insufficient to address an "economic, environmental, and national security catastrophe in the making."

        Laughable, and the joke is on us. Your loyalty won't save you when the waters rise.

        When you triangulate everything, you can't even roll downhill...

        by PhilJD on Sat Feb 15, 2014 at 12:41:42 PM PST

        [ Parent ]

      •  I applaud him for this (0+ / 0-)

        I don't mean to imply that the President hasn't done anything, he has.  I certainly believe he should do more, given the seriousness of this crises, and I believe it's very dangerous to give the impression to the public that we can adapt to this.  We can't.

      •  Exactly ... not even sufficient to ... (0+ / 0-)

        ... offset the drill baby drill policies of the administration, which the President brags about in the State of the Union even as he says that Climate Change is a fact.

        If climate change is a fact, then 20% renewable for the entire US grid by 2020 and zero emissions by 2035 would be reasonable and modest targets ... 20% of the Federal government alone  by 2020 is dribbling a small trickle into a bucket while at the same time putting a hole in the bucket that with a bigger leak than that.

        Support Lesbian Creative Works with Yuri anime and manga from ALC Publishing

        by BruceMcF on Sat Feb 15, 2014 at 03:28:21 PM PST

        [ Parent ]

  •  Not even the Republicans have come up with a (3+ / 0-)
    Recommended by:
    PhilJD, poligirl, Kombema

    better idea to reduce the size of the Federal government.

    With one stroke of the pen, President Obama could order all Federal buildings to reduce their electricity usage by 10% and to purchase wind and solar power for at least 50% of their electricity usage by 2020.  With one stroke of the pen the president could order   50% of all new federal car purchases be 0 emissions and the remaining purchases to exceed fuel efficiency standards by 2020.
  •  98% agreement. Unlike the duck and cover... (12+ / 0-)

    ...and its successor "Crisis Relocation" were indeed "total bullshit," the administration's policies on climate change can't be wholly described that way. Some good actions have been taken, emissions controls, efficiency standards, renewables investment. The trouble is that the policy of "all of the above" supersedes these good things with a whole lot of bad.

    As for adaptation, if it's the only thing going, it's terrible policy and completely deserving of your mockery. But, even with the best possible leadership really focused on global warming, one of the provisions of the policy will alsohave to be adaptation because the changes are already well under way. The mistake is making adaptation the centerpiece to the exclusion of measures designed to prevent the crisis from getting worse than it is already destined to be given the greenhouse gases we've already pumped into the atmosphere.

    Don't tell me what you believe, show me what you do and I will tell you what you believe.

    by Meteor Blades on Sat Feb 15, 2014 at 10:40:10 AM PST

    •  How high do the seawalls have to be? (1+ / 0-)
      Recommended by:

      I see where you're coming from MB.  But an ounce of prevention is worth a pound of cure, and in the case of Global Warming, there is no cure, there is only prevention.

      Katrina, Sandy, massive midwest drought, California drought, Colorado fires followed by historic floods, Australia...  Even the most modest of mitigation efforts is going to run into many $trillions and we've only begun to slightly feel the oncoming disaster.

      Say goodbye to Social Security, Medicare, and most other current spending as governments around the world try to handle mass migrations (Florida is already toast) and other massive and costly disasters.

      Sorry MB, to spend money on mitigation and adaptation, and to especially give the false impression we can adapt, only takes away the desperately needed resources we need for prevention.

      •  I think MB is suggesting that NOTHING we do now, (8+ / 0-)

        even if--against all odds-humanity decides to tackle climate change with every conceivable resource, will be sufficient to prevent weather and coastline changes that are already inevitable.

        If that's correct, and I agree it is, one way or another we will have to adapt to those changes. Might as well do it with a conscious, well thought-out plan.

        When you triangulate everything, you can't even roll downhill...

        by PhilJD on Sat Feb 15, 2014 at 10:59:06 AM PST

        [ Parent ]

        •  Yes, I'm torn on this. (3+ / 0-)
          Recommended by:
          PhilJD, Kombema, DawnN

          Yep, it's already too late to stop all changes, and people will have to change.  But the president has repeatedly said he would do something about GW and after this week, instead of making very bold efforts at prevention, it sure looks like his emphasis will be on adaptation.

          So far, we've dodged the nuclear war bullet, and not because of "duck and cover" adaptation, but because of our efforts at prevention.  I don't think most people today believe for a second that "duck and cover" was a viable solution to the threat of nuclear war, and no one should for a second believe adaptation is the solution to Global Warming.  

          The right wing propaganda machine first denied the planet was warming, then they denied it was man made, and now they're moving on to let the free market help us adapt to the warming climate.

          I very much fear that President Obama (maybe inadvertently) is giving the public the impression we can adapt, and he's playing right into the Republican's hands.

          •  This is why I said I agree with you 98%... (3+ / 0-)
            Recommended by:
            PhilJD, marina, DawnN

            ...but I sure as hell do want us to mitigate and adapt. Otherwise, we are condemning billions of humans and who knows how many other species to oblivion after some nasty suffering. You're right, prevention should be our key focus. But you can't prevent an avalanche that is already halfway down the mountain, you can only take measures to keep it from getting worse.

            Don't tell me what you believe, show me what you do and I will tell you what you believe.

            by Meteor Blades on Sat Feb 15, 2014 at 11:59:37 AM PST

            [ Parent ]

            •  "All of the above" on climate change would be fine (4+ / 0-)
              Recommended by:
              PhilJD, TJ, pollwatcher, DawnN

              If steps were being taken to mitigate against consequences of climate change AND equally determined steps were taken to halt climate change, that would be fine.  That would, however, mean things like killing KXL and proposing a far more aggressive legislative agenda.  There's not much that can be done legislatively now*, but initiatives could at least be proposed and a determined effort could be made to push the Overton Windows.

              *Had half the effort been exerted to address climate change as was exerted to save Wall Street in 2009-10, things would be very different now.

              Some men see things as they are and ask why. I dream of things that never were and ask why not?

              by RFK Lives on Sat Feb 15, 2014 at 12:11:26 PM PST

              [ Parent ]

          •  I fully understand your point, but we've already (4+ / 0-)

            locked in a certain amount of change that's irreversible, and the more we anticipate that change and adapt to it -- while doing our utmost to minimize additional change down the road -- the cheaper and less catastrophic it will be. But you're right to be cynical about the administration's efforts at adaptation, given their "drill, baby, drill" approach to fossil fuels extraction. Kind of like the local doctor cutting people's car brake lines so he can "help" them recover from their accidents.

            "Government by organized money is just as dangerous as Government by organized mob." -- Franklin D. Roosevelt

            by Kombema on Sat Feb 15, 2014 at 12:00:53 PM PST

            [ Parent ]

        •  Yes. That's exactly where I am coming from. n/t (4+ / 0-)

          Don't tell me what you believe, show me what you do and I will tell you what you believe.

          by Meteor Blades on Sat Feb 15, 2014 at 11:56:25 AM PST

          [ Parent ]

        •  Climate Defeatism (4+ / 0-)

          I believe that there are very many things we could do right now that would halt and even reverse the concentration of carbon dioxide and other greenhouse gases in the atmosphere.  These are principally ecological design solutions and none of them have been part of the conversation.  Specifically, I am thinking of Allan Savory's work with soil carbon sequestration through grassland regeneration and John Todd's work with water remediation and his design for the restoration of coal-ravaged lands.

          Of course, that's not going to happen as long as the fossil fools control the economy with their over-valued assets and their climate denial tactics.

          There are ecological solutions available but all the debate is about the theology of climate change (does it exist or not?) and the promise or peril of geoengineering, heroic technocratism at its clearest.

          We are not used to systems thinking and even much less used to thinking in terms of ecological systems.

          •  Oh, please don't talk about geoengineering. (2+ / 0-)
            Recommended by:
            pollwatcher, gmoke

            That would be game over for us all.  The last thing that we need is to put more garbage into the atmosphere.  We need to mitigate the emissions.  The scientists that talk about it have no idea what the impacts would be for the systems involved.  If there's one thing that climate science should be showing us is that the biosphere, geosphere, stratosphere are all interconnected, sometimes in ways that are not easily predictable.

            I love that you brought up Allen Savory's work.  That will be important for areas that have been used for GMO's where the soil needs revitalization.

            •  Geoengineering (0+ / 0-)

              I'm NOT talking about geoengineering.  I'm talking about ecological systems design and restoration, geotherapy, if you will, which is the term that is beginning to come into use.

              Geoengineering is thinking like a hammer.  Geotherapy is thinking like a tree.  Allan Savory's work is one example of what I'm thinking about.

              My notes on Cows Save the Planet, which describes a number of geotherapeutic approaches to soil carbon, are available at

              •  Thanks for the clarification, Gsmoke. (1+ / 0-)
                Recommended by:

                I get worried when people introduce what climate scientists call "geoengineering" where they want to put particulates in the upper atmosphere (similating the effect of a volcano") for temporary planet cooling.  I am very against this idea.  A couple of days ago someone was posting consipiracy theory videos on that and another subject.

                What you are talking about is a great idea.  A second benefit is that it repairs the soil so that it can capture more water as well as carbon.

      •  Prevention? (3+ / 0-)
        Recommended by:
        pollwatcher, PhilJD, Kombema

        Too late.   Everyone vegan? No one drive anymore? No more babies? Starting now!   Might have been possible  if President Carters  plans had been continued and a mighty paradigm shift had occurred .

        •  Can't be that pessimistic. (2+ / 0-)
          Recommended by:
          PhilJD, Kombema

          A better battery changes the world.  If we could reduce the cost of present batteries by half, or we could double the current energy capacity at the same cost, gasoline driven cars would no longer be economical.  Everyone would switch to electric cars.  I can make the same argument for hydrogen storage for fuel cells, smart grids...  All we need is the political will to fund the research.

          Fossil fuels will always go up in price, and as soon as we can get the many alternatives cheaper than fossil fuels, than we reverse Global Warming.  Then it becomes time to spend on mitigation and prevention.

          •  Nice idea, but we're limited by the fact that (1+ / 0-)
            Recommended by:

            95% of the mineable rare earth minerals that go into electronics and batteries are found in China, Russia, or in conflict zones. Short of the Democratic Party growing a pair, I'm hopeful that recent fusion tech advances will accelerate to commercial viability in a generation. But in the meantime, we've got to ramp up the other alt energy investments, as you note, and TRY to make policy change happen, while assuming mostly it won't and that we will have to prepare for and adapt to the worst to come.

            "Government by organized money is just as dangerous as Government by organized mob." -- Franklin D. Roosevelt

            by Kombema on Sat Feb 15, 2014 at 12:07:17 PM PST

            [ Parent ]

        •  It should be remembered that Carter's... (4+ / 0-)

 policy was also "all of the above." I was employed on the renewables side of those policies until Ronzo killed our budget in '81. The difference between Carter's era and now is that global warming wasn't at issue then, only energy, so "all of the above" made sense (if you didn't mind tearing up the environment for oil shale, etc.). But now, with global warming the key issues, "all of the above" is counterproductive.

          Don't tell me what you believe, show me what you do and I will tell you what you believe.

          by Meteor Blades on Sat Feb 15, 2014 at 12:02:48 PM PST

          [ Parent ]

    •  $1 billion for adaption is totally mockable. (7+ / 0-)

      What did Sandy alone run, 20-30 billion of damages?

  •  This is a clever analogy... and sadly, an apt one. (4+ / 0-)
    Recommended by:
    poligirl, pollwatcher, Kombema, DawnN

    Good diary. Republished to Progressive Policy Zone.

    When you triangulate everything, you can't even roll downhill...

    by PhilJD on Sat Feb 15, 2014 at 10:42:21 AM PST

  •  You called it. Kabuki. (4+ / 0-)
    Recommended by:
    PhilJD, pollwatcher, Kombema, DawnN

    Especially considering Obama won't get his opening offer.

  •  Where's his bold effort? (4+ / 0-)

    In the closet with his "comfortable shoes" that he was going to help walk picket lines with.

    Adaptation WILL be required, it will just take a different form than USDA planners and other government officials envision.  

    The first adaptation will be "how are you going to get locally grown food?"  Given the drought in California, we may be seeing the last of fresh fruit and vegetables from there for the near future.  The next drought that hits the midwest, ditto for corn, wheat, and soy.  Without harvested inputs into one end of the agribusiness pipeline, there won't be so much available on the other end, the supermarket shelves.  

    People who can afford the doubled or tripled food prices, they will be OK, as will those oddballs that are into gardening and always seem to have an excess of cardoons or radicchio or some other plant that nobody knew was edible.  

    This marks the beginning of Obama's Lame Duck era, as it is obvious that he is just going through the motions until his successor is sworn in.  

    •  What are these regional hubs actually going to do? (4+ / 0-)

      Hold annual rain dances?  Tell farmers to innovate and find a replacement for water?  Send sandbags to the coasts?

      Actual adaption would involve reducing emissions.

      •  Create more markets (1+ / 0-)
        Recommended by:

        for seaweed growing where there were beaches, and for tumble weeds and sage brush were there was corn and wheat.

      •  Plenty they can do and some of it will be (1+ / 0-)
        Recommended by:

        very familiar to organic farmers, but new or unused technologies to conventional growers. BUT my understanding is these centers are as yet unfunded.

        Even if I knew that tomorrow the world would go to pieces, I would still plant my apple tree. -Martin Luther

        by the fan man on Sat Feb 15, 2014 at 11:42:35 AM PST

        [ Parent ]

      •  They will be necessary (3+ / 0-)
        Recommended by:
        PhilJD, EliseMattu, DawnN

        to help farmers, but we'll need more than seven hubs; we need all of the Farm Service Agencies to be re-opened, since many were closed, reorganized, and many positions defunded during the Bush years. Those FSA offices were information hubs all by themselves, but now many are staffed by only one or two people; even monthly newsletters are no more, having gone to online versions which not all farmers can access.

        Even many of our county agent positions are gone, in Pennsylvania, due to Governor Corbett's reductions in funding to state offices. Those county agents provided decades of experience and knowledge to all, and not just farmers.

        All this at a time when farmers need help  of all kinds to keep producing the crops we need to survive.

        We need all hands on board now, not just skeleton crews. And we need more than a pittance in funding to do the work ahead of us.

    •  Which is why unfortunately, international trade (1+ / 0-)
      Recommended by:

      in produce will increase. Hey locavores have been preaching eating local year round, we'll all get to try the new diet.

      Even if I knew that tomorrow the world would go to pieces, I would still plant my apple tree. -Martin Luther

      by the fan man on Sat Feb 15, 2014 at 11:43:59 AM PST

      [ Parent ]

  •  I'm going for tip and rec and cover (3+ / 0-)
    Recommended by:
    PhilJD, EliseMattu, DawnN

    for this diary :)

    "If you sing a song a day/ You will make a better way" -- Earth, Wind, and Fire

    by Cassiodorus on Sat Feb 15, 2014 at 12:20:44 PM PST

  •  exponential change (2+ / 0-)
    Recommended by:
    pollwatcher, EliseMattu

    the rate of Top of Atmosphere energy imbalance (warming) is increasing at an exponential rate.

    We have measured this by the amount of heat energy going into the oceans every year.

    there is no adaption to an exponentially increasing change.

  •  obama's policy of mitigation (2+ / 0-)
    Recommended by:
    pollwatcher, DawnN

    or adaptation or resilience or whatever the marketing department deigns to name it is really just this:

    we have no intention of keeping fossil fuels in the ground because there's too much money to be made so all you little people can go fuck yourselves

    but i'm a compassionate conservative so here's a fan for the heat, a glass of water for the drought, and a pair of rubber boots for the floods

    good luck

    now adapt away! (how quickly does evolution work anyhow?)

  •  One of the biggest problems relating to (0+ / 0-)

    Overall Big Problems, is when serious discussions of the cause of the Big Problem  cannot be allowed.

    Currently Scandinavian scientists tell us that some 15% of the annual man made contributions to climate change are coming directly from the USA's black op programs, and there are places on the web to go and see how much private companies are bidding to be part of these specific  black op programs.

    But we are not supposed to think those programs exist.

    Additionally we are told that these black op programs are nothing more than our delusional beliefs, and that they can be explained away by the fact that commercial aviation exists.

    Yet I still have not had one person able to explain away the Summer of 2009 and 2010 sightings of planes that flew over the lake known as "Clear Lake" here in California, that were at an altitude of some 4,500 feet or so, to begin with, then went up to close to 10,000 feet or so, and then were back down in the 4,400 foot range some nine miles later.

    There are no FAA allowances for commercial jet pilots to do that to themselves, their crew or their passengers, Furthermore,  the government does not allow testing of aircraft over a civilian populated area. (If this happened in the winter, I guess, you could say that this rural area is not populated enough to warrant any precautions, but in the summer, this area is a  resort area and is swarming with tourists.)

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