Dotard

Whatever else Rocket Man may be, he sure knows a senile old fart when he sees one.

That car? I get to ride in that car? Look at how shiny it is! …where are we going again? And in that car, you say?

“I will surely and definitely tame the deranged U.S. dotard with fire,” Kim declared in an unusually direct and angry statement published Thursday by North Korea’s official Korean Central News Agency.

It doesn’t bode well for the country that both the media and the Congress Critters are pretending Generalissimo Donaldo Juan Trumpo is not mentally deficient 1 , whether it be caused by dementia or Alzheimer’s.
Dotard

Show 1 footnote

  1. Jeeeez, but that’s cutting the bastard a whole of slack, amirite?

More Man Made Climate Change

When Joel Thornton at the University of Washington in Seattle and his colleagues looked at records of lightning strikes between 2005 and 2016 from the World Wide Lightning Location Network, they noticed there were significantly more strikes in certain regions of the east Indian Ocean and the South China Sea, compared with the surrounding areas. Unusually, they occurred along two straight lines in the open ocean, which coincided with two of the busiest shipping lanes in the world. Along these paths there were twice as many lightning strikes as in nearby areas.

“We were quite sure the ships had to be involved,” says Thornton. But they still had to eliminate other factors that influence storm intensity, such as wind speeds and temperatures.

Once these had been ruled out, the team concluded that aerosols from the ships’ engine exhausts were the culprit. Aerosol particles act as seeds, around which water vapour condenses into cloud droplets. In clean air there aren’t many seeds, so the cloud drops quickly grow and fall as rain. But when there are a lot of seeds, like over busy shipping routes, a greater number of small cloud drops form. Since these are light, they rise up high into the atmosphere and freeze, creating clouds rich in ice.

It is this that leads to more intense thunderstorms: lightning only occurs if clouds are electrically charged, and this only happens if there are lots of ice crystals.

More Man Made Climate Change

FEMA Asteroid Impact Tabletop Exercise Simulations

Long time Feds are all too familiar with COOP (Continuity of Operations 1) exercises.

The DoJ is not immune from this planning; everything from the state courts to the Critical Response team to ATAC must have a working plan. 2

Hell, even the White House has a plan 3, and, of course, there’s an übergreifend government-wide plan.

But the real eye-opener is the recent FEMA Asteroid Impact Tabletop Exercise Simulations. 4

WARNING WARNING WARNING – not for the faint of heart:

The worst case, given the specified uncertainty, would be that the approaching object is already fractured and weak enough to explode at high altitude. Such an airburst can spread its energy out over a larger area and will be more damaging than a crater-forming impact. The worst-case scenario would be a high altitude airburst releasing about 10.6 Mt of energy. The best estimate would be that the fragment is a slightly less dense 50-meter object. Even a relatively strong object of this size is likely to explode at high altitude; although it is possible some fraction of it could reach the ground and form a crater. This best estimate is almost identical to current understanding of the Tunguska explosion…

Since the uncertainty in impact location is extensive, we also provided a map showing the damage footprint at several locations within the ellipse, which we then we convolved with the footprint (Figure 3). We advised participants that preliminary evacuation plans for an airburst over land should be in a lateral direction into area known already to be at no risk, but that detailed plans should wait until radar data becomes available (about 6 days before impact)…

Much of the uncertainty ellipse spans parts of the Gulf of Mexico. An impact within that part of the ellipse would produce a tsunami, and would affect the whole of the coastline from Texas to Florida. According to calculations by Souheil Ezzedine of Lawrence Livermore National Laboratory (LLNL) a tsunami generated by an impact in the easternmost part of the ellipse would have wave heights of 3 to 10 m and would arrive at the coast over a time spanning from 1 to 4.25 hours after the impact. The tsunami would first reach the Louisiana coastline, causing near total destruction to the barrier islands, The wave run-up would extend inland as far as 16 km.

BONUS! See what an asteroid would do to your hometown!

FEMA Asteroid Impact Tabletop Exercise Simulations

Show 4 footnotes

  1. Read: Where shit goes terribly, terribly wrong.
  2. The Marshalls Service also does COOP, at least once a year, but al it entails is making sure people like Panchito Romero Miguel Junipero Francisco Quintero González III remain locked down regardless whether the emergency is a power outage or a thermonuclear attack.
  3. Surely superfluous these days, n’est-ce pas?
  4. Certain ReThugs will see this as wasteful government spending, further justification (as if any were needed!) for slicing FEME’s budget by at least half. But this is exactly what FEMA should be doing – preparing for any eventuality, regardless of statistical odds of occurance. After all…who’d thought we’d elect an orange Cheeto as president? Shit happens, folks.

Sinclair Broadcast Group

The company that is soon to own WDAF 4 has instituted a lot of changes at it’s stations; take WJAR-TV, which is mandated to broadcast of multiple programs favorable to Generalissimo Donaldo Juan Trumpo on that state’s most-watched television station.

Sinclair Broadcast Group, a rapidly growing media company that bought Channel 10 in 2014, produces “must-run” segments and distributes them to its local stations nationwide. They must air during daily news programming, Sinclair executives said.

Sinclair is poised to become the nation’s largest owner of TV stations and, with its recent hire of former Trump aide Boris Epshteyn, viewers can expect to see more of the chain’s political programming.

The practice, which has infused a political flavor into the 68-year-old WJAR’s broadcasts, started quietly there at least a year ago.

Three of the segments have rattled viewers and WJAR’s own news reporters, according to Fletcher Fischer, the business manager and financial secretary of the International Brotherhood of Electrical Workers Local 1228, the union that represents broadcast workers there:

  • The Terrorism Alert Desk, advertised as a daily news update about terrorist activity.
  • News pieces from Epshteyn, Sinclair’s chief political analyst.
  • A clearly labeled opinion show featuring Mark Hyman, a former vice president of the company.

These pieces are fed to Sinclair’s 174 stations in the United States every day.

Sinclair’s insertion of the segments into news programming has been harshly critiqued by Rhode Islanders and national commentators.

Gloria Crist, a 54-year-old actress from Tiverton, says she’s stopped watching the station.

Rep. David N. Cicilline condemned the practice, saying: “Rhode Islanders rely on our local news being produced in Rhode Island, not directed by a national conglomerate for local broadcasters to deliver.”

Washington Post media columnist Margaret Sullivan wrote, “What Fox News is for cable, Sinclair could become for broadcast: programming with a soupçon — or more — of conservative spin.”

And HBO’s John Oliver dedicated a show to what he calls Sinclair’s corporate propaganda.

But Sinclair says it’s providing national commentary to “free up” reporters “to create more local news, which we considered to be squarely in the public interest.”

So much for the “liberal” mainstream media, n’est-ce pas?

WDAF is already a FOX sock puppet, so perhaps there won’t be too significant a change locally. And hey! our own Terrorism Alert Desk! Hoo boy – bring on the popcorn!

Better yet, Sinclair is launching a “national investigative news team“, which we would assume, would –at least locally– delve into the Kansas City Water Department incompetency, the downtown hotel cash give-away, as well as the illegalities surrounding the street car.

What could possibly go wrong?

Sinclair Broadcast Group

Au Courant

This week’s au courant links:

And finally, Jimmy Kimmrl on Ted Cruz and Twitter pr0n:

We Need Bullwinkle Today

Mr. Chairman, I am against all foreign aid, especially to places like Hawaii and Alaska,” says Senator Fussmussen from the floor of a cartoon Senate in 1962.

In the visitors’ gallery, Russian agents Boris Badenov and Natasha Fatale are deciding whether to use their secret “Goof Gas” gun to turn the Congress stupid, as they did to all the rocket scientists and professors in the last episode of “Bullwinkle.”

Another senator wants to raise taxes on everyone under the age of 67. He, of course, is 68. Yet a third stands up to demand, “We’ve got to get the government out of government!” The Pottsylvanian spies decide their weapon is unnecessary: Congress is already ignorant, corrupt and feckless.

Hahahahaha. Oh, Washington

…It wasn’t that Bullwinkle the character was especially compelling. He was an affable doofus with a loyal heart, if limited brainpower. Rocky was the more intelligent straight man: a less hostile Abbott to Bullwinkle’s more secure Costello. They were earnest do-gooders who took every obviously shady setup at face value. Their enemies were far cleverer, better resourced, and infinitely more cunning, but Rocky and Bullwinkle always prevailed. Always. For absolutely no good reason. It was a sendup of every Horatio Alger, Tom Swift, plucky-American-hero-wins-against-all-odds story ever made.

What we didn’t know in the ‘70s, when we were watching, that this was pretty subversive stuff for a children’s program made at the height of the Cold War. Watching this dumb moose and his rodent pal continually prevail against well-funded human saboteurs gave me pause to consider, even as a kid, that perhaps it is a silly idea to believe that just because we’re the good guys we should always expect to win…

…Bullwinkle’s playful critique lives on today in “Spongebob” and “The Simpsons,” shows whose creators openly acknowledge their debts. (Spongebob’s Squidward’s voice is Ned Sparks; Plankton is Walter Brennan. All the male Simpsons have Bullwinkle & Rocky’s middle initial “J.”) These shows are a loving critique of the ways American ideals and American reality are often out of whack.  And it’s a good thing, because suddenly the original great theme of Bullwinkle -—fear of nuclear annihilation—- is back.

We Need Bullwinkle Today