Stark Contrast on Climate Change

The Paris Climate Agreement takes effect today and although the national commitments pledged thus far fall far short of what needs to be done if global warming is to be kept below 2C above pre-industrial levels and if the most environmentally devastating and socially destabilizing effects of climate change are to be avoided it at least provides a framework which gives humanity a chance at reaching this extremely important goal.

I ask any U.S. voters that visit this site and I hope you’ll ask any you know to take this critically important issue into account on Tuesday and note that one candidate has a plan to address it while creating new jobs and the only plan her competitor has is to deny there’s a problem and write it all off as a “hoax”. Trump doesn’t even list the environment as an issue on his campaign site however it does say he will “scrap the EPA’s so-called Clean Power Plan” and has said he will get rid of the EPA in almost every form. Of all the things that make Trump unfit to be president I think his ignorance and lack of concern as it pertains to climate change and other environmental issues is the most disqualifying.

Taking on the threat of climate change and making America the world’s clean energy superpower.

Two Weeks to Election Day

The biosphere and human civilization can not afford 4 years of inaction and reversals of the modest climate change policies that have been enacted over the last 8 years. We need a U.S. president, as well as a U.S. Senate and Congress, that will not only support policies like the Clean Power Plan and treaties like the Paris Climate Agreement we need one who will build upon them because the international community’s current commitments to reduce greenhouse gas emissions fall far short of what is needed to ensure, or even make it likely, that the earth of the late 21st century will be as biodiverse and inhabitable as the earth of the early 21st century. Obviously climate change isn’t the only important issue in this election but I think it’s the most important as well as the most neglected. If you take a few steps back and take a broader more long-term worldview I’m confident you will agree.

If you’re eligible please don’t leave this election and the health of this planet to chance. Be sure to vote and encourage others to join you in making sure climate change deniers do not get elected president, senator, or congressperson.

 

Climate Change Ignored

It’s disgraceful that in four debates the candidates for president and vice president were not asked a single question about planet earth’s and human civilization’s most pressing problem, climate change. Shame on all the moderators for missing a great chance to help educate the severely uniformed and misinformed U.S. electorate on this extremely important issue. Moreover shame on much of the U.S. electorate who choose to ignore the warnings and continue to burn fossil fuels in larger than necessary vehicles and eat meat like climate change, deforestation, and environmental degradation in general isn’t an issue while supporting climate change denying politicians or not bothering to vote at all.

Call out the Climate Change Deniers

Presidential Debate Ignores Climate Change … Again

Yemen

I had to leave my place a day after getting back due to some painting. It’s only a little on some trim on the balconies however even a slight smell of paint or any other harmful concoction of chemicals, e.g., perfume and laundry detergent, is too much for me so I decided to leave for a couple days. I’m now at my mountain retreat which is a two and a half hour bus ride away where I don’t have internet access thanks to the screen on my phone dying after being dropped about 3 weeks ago. Anyway here’s a good article regarding recent U.S. actions in Yemen and the way the mainstream media has covered it.

Hiding US Role in Yemen Slaughter So Bombing Can Be Sold as ‘Self-Defense’

 

Islamophobia

Another thing that was discussed in last night’s debate was Islamophobia so I wanted to briefly say what I think that is and isn’t.

Islamophobia isn’t wanting to keep people who live by their own set of medieval laws which make women second class citizens and make it dangerous to be gay, lesbian, or a freethinker out of your country; nor is it wanting to make it illegal for the people already in your country to wear burqas and similar identity concealing attire in public places and to dress children in such attire.

Islamophobia is wanting to ban all people who identify as Muslim from entering your country regardless of how they interpret and practice their religion. We shouldn’t be so afraid of being labeled intolerant that we tolerate things which should not be tolerated, nor should we place an entire broad and diverse group of people into one small box and label it based upon the most abominable members of that group.

Absentee and Early Voting

I mailed in my absentee ballot today! If you know anyone overseas or eligible for early voting in the States please encourage them to vote now rather than later. Getting an absentee ballot is easy! So is printing it, marking your choices, signing your name, and sending it in the mail. Here’s a link to an online tool that makes it even easier for U.S. citizens abroad to vote.

Please remind all the U.S. expats you know to vote.

More Than 150 Republican Leaders Don’t Support Donald Trump. Here’s When They Reached Their Breaking Point.

A Vote For Trump is a Vote Against Life on Earth

Tonight’s the first presidential debate of 2016 and will be the first time a women is one of the two people making their case for your vote and public support leading up to election day. Unfortunately rather than pondering the well-thought and detailed plans of the one candidate that has them I’m afraid many of those who are still undecided, yes such people exist, will just be looking for the worst gaffes and best one-liners. To these people who still haven’t outright rejected the possibility of voting for Trump, those who plan on voting for a third party or not voting at all, and those who actually support Trump, know that a vote for Trump is a vote against life on Earth.

Trump claims climate change is a “hoax” and has promised to undo the modest and long-overdue commitments the U.S. has made to do anything about it, e.g. Clean Power Plan. He doesn’t even mention climate change or environmental issues in general on his campaign website nor does he talk about them on the campaign trail except to say things like he’s “going to get rid of the department of environmental protection in almost every form” and “cancel the Paris climate agreement”. How could a man with such a blatant disregard for the health of the planet that has given us all life get a single vote from anyone even remotely concerned about the stability of the climate and diversity of the biosphere.

Trump’s positions, and lack of positions, on climate change and other environmental issues should be a deal-breaker for anyone who isn’t intent on leaving behind a planet to future generations that’s much less biologically diverse and in much worse shape than the one we’re fortunate enough to inhabit. Please publicly support Hillary for president and remind any Trump supporters what a vote for The Donald could mean, and if he’s elected will mean, for future generations of life on this planet. Climate change is real, humans are largely responsible, and we can’t put off taking decisive action any longer. We need a president who will build upon the environmental and economic achievements made over the past 8 years not one who is running on destroying them.

Taking on the threat of climate change and making America the world’s clean energy superpower.

A Full List of Donald Trump’s Rapidly Changing Policy Positions

Trump’s endorsement of Hillary Clinton

P.S. In the debate Trump denied saying virtually the exact same thing he tweeted and has yet to delete. Unfortunately his supporters don’t seem to see it as lying or untruthful when he denies his past statements. The fact is Trump bends the truth or straight out lies more so than Hillary according to the Truth-O-Meter.

Police Shootings

Dear Police, we all know you have a dangerous job and need to be ready for anything but if you’re so nervous and fearful, particularly around black people, that it affects your decision making ability then you shouldn’t be armed and on the beat. Not all people that fail to follow your commands are out to kill you. Some may be autistic, some deaf, and some may be intoxicated so please give them the benefit of the doubt and don’t take lethal action until your life is truly in danger.

Dear Public, you will greatly reduce your chances of getting shot if you keep your hands visible, avoid sudden movements, and do as instructed. I’ve seen a few tragic videos over the past few years of people getting shot and killed by anxious police and most of them have something in common and that is the victim is resisting arrest or not following commands. While this doesn’t justify a police shooting it does greatly increase the chances of one happening so please remember to follow commands.

Dear Protestors, bringing public attention to what might have otherwise been another overlooked injustice is the right thing to do and will lead towards better policing and safer streets. However any rioting and/or looting is the worst possible thing you can do in the wake of a police shooting so if you really want to prevent future tragedies please keep your protests peaceful, engage in constructive dialogue, and work with law enforcement agencies to help bring violent police and protestors to justice.

More Pressing Issues

Hijab emoji? Does the emoji library also need a burka emoji and a niqab emoji? Instead of creating emoji characters for all the religions, or just those whose adherents ardently request them, why not just stick with human face emoji which now, as they should, come in multiple skin colors. With that said I think those for and against religious emoji should focus on the more pressing issues related to Islam, other religions, and cultural backwardness in general.

The women tweeting for their freedom in Saudi Arabia

When American girls are forced into marriage abroad, the U.S. can do little to rescue them

P.S. I just made a small donation to Tahirih Justice Center which is highly rated on Charity Navigator.

3.8 Billion Dollars Annually

How can the U.S., a country so deeply in debt that we’ve been told it can’t afford to provide health care and higher education to all its citizens, afford to give Israel, a country with a per capita GDP of around $35,000 and the most technologically advanced military in the Middle East, 3.8 billion dollars a year in military aid? I understand it costs Israel a lot to defend its illegal settlements but I don’t think U.S. taxpayers should be the ones to pay for it. Moreover as the sole nuclear power in the Middle East Israel is perfectly capable of deterring and defending itself from its neighbors without U.S. taxpayer dollars.

U.S. and Israel reach agreement on unprecedented amount of military aid

Feel free to let your government representatives know if you think this is a good way to spend 3.8 billion in taxpayer dollars over the next 10 years. I think the U.S. and the rest of the world would be much better off if this annual $3,800,000,000 was spent on health and education or perhaps on alternative energy infrastructure.

White House     U.S. Senate     U.S. House of Representative

Ban Bullfighting

Bullfighting is another instance where culture and tradition overrides empathy and humanity and anyone participating in these events and/or opposing an outright ban of them should be ashamed of themselves. It’s great to see the good people of Spain take to the streets to oppose this barbarism that is still taking place in their country.

Spain bullfighting: Thousands rally in Madrid to demand ban

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September Eleventh and November Eighth

In addition to remembering the innocent people who were murdered 15 years ago we should also remember the decades of U.S. interventions in the Middle East and elsewhere that helped fuel the hatred that culminated in that terrorist attack and reflect upon the poorly planned interventions that followed it. 9/11 was a turning point in U.S. and world history and unfortunately the U.S. turned the wrong way. On this anniversary a sarcastic thanks must be given to U.S. mainstream media, particularly Fox News, for too often failing to challenge Bush administration assumptions and leading an uninformed/misinformed U.S. public into a strongly opposed war of choice.

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Smoke Spewers

As one should I often call people out when they ride or drive past me in smoke spewing vehicles. If I’m able to speak with them I give them a brief and cordial lecture. Even if I’m unable to have a word with them if I can at least get their attention I will often point at the smoke coming from their vehicle and follow them with my extended arm with a look of disappointment/disapproval on my face as they go by. I think most people are intelligent enough to get it including onlookers most of whom I imagine after having been smoked many times themselves are happy that someone is in some small way is taking a stand.

Obviously the operators of these smoke spewing vehicles aren’t out to pollute the air on purpose it’s just that they lack the will, and sometimes the funds, to have their vehicles fixed. I see neither a valid excuse but can understand a poor persons predicament especially if they need their vehicle for work. However one thing I have never heard of, until today, is someone actually spending time and money to turn an emissions compliant vehicle into a smoke spewer. Where might you find such inconsiderate and irresponsible idiots? I wonder who these fine human specimens are going to vote for in November?

‘Rolling Coal’ in Diesel Trucks, to Rebel and Provoke

Donald Trump just lied again about opposing the Iraq War before it started. Here’s proof.

No More Unstable Strongman Leaders

The world doesn’t need another alpha male with a tendency to speak before they think leading a country especially one as powerful and influential as the United States.

Rodrigo Duterte’s Most Contentious Quotations

Philippine President Sorry, Not Sorry He Cursed Obama for Criticism of His Killing Spree

The more you think freely and amass knowledge the more you realize that the religion you were indoctrinated into and the country you were told to pledge allegiance to are just one of many within our fragile biosphere and that blind faith in either of them, or in a charismatic leader that claims to represent them, is what most often gets us humans into trouble.

Create your own culture, be your own leader, and strive to set a positive example for others.

Alcohol, Strangers, and Rape

Last night there was a tourist at a bar and she was alone but met some new friends, a couple from California, who this afternoon told me the following story on a little boat returning from the beach it took place. Yesterday evening after a few drinks this young lady left the bar and was later spotted by her new friends walking with a guy. Not too long after in a secluded place not too far from the bar the guy tried to molest her and while fleeing from him she stumbled and fell off a cliff. Continue reading

Gasoline Is Not Cheap

The fact that the average person in the U.S. is responsible for emitting more than twice as much greenhouse gas as the average person in the E.U. and Japan doesn’t seem to affect their vehicle purchasing or driving habits like you’d think/hope it would. Climate change, dying planet, future generations having to deal with the consequences… who cares. Gas is cheap so lets buy gas guzzlers and drive more! All people who drive, especially those who drive gas guzzlers, should make a serious effort to carpool.

American Drivers Regain Appetite for Gas Guzzlers

Cheaper Gas Means More Americans Are On The Road

Ecological Footprint

I know what I’m doing to reduce my ecological footprint, how about you? What are you doing? Is that the best you can reasonably/comfortably do? I say reasonably/comfortably because I don’t think people should have to live in caves on diets of locally harvested edible weeds however according to my observations and this graph the average person, particularly the average U.S. and Canadian citizen, has major room for improvement. Climate Change Continues

per_capita_emissions

Disaster Trump

Donald Trump is unfit to be president and entrusting such an erratic individual with the nuclear launch codes is beyond irresponsible it is insane. We can not elect a president who thinks climate change is a hoax and who has vowed to “cancel” the Paris Climate Agreement.

This election is not a choice between the lesser of two evils it is a choice between stability and disaster. I choose stability and that is why I support Hillary Clinton for president. Not voting or voting for a third party candidate is almost as bad as voting for Disaster Trump so I hope all Bernie supporters will vote for Hillary in November and encourage others to do the same.

Hey Terrorists and Their Sympathizers, Please Stop It.

God will take care of me and all the other infidels so there’s no reason for you to shoot up night clubs, drive into crowds of innocent people, or commit any other atrocious acts. By even thinking about committing such evil acts in the name of God you’re basically saying that God is incapable of determining and carrying out his own will so he needs you to do it for him. That type of thinking is not only arrogant it is also insulting to the God you claim to serve. It’s almost as if you don’t really believe there is a God and are simply using the whole God is on my side idea to justify your sick and twisted view of reality.

Instead of hating those who don’t follow your primitive rules and rituals just view us in amusement and laugh at us knowing that we’re really going to get it from God in the manner and at the time of his choosing, not yours. In conclusion, God doesn’t need you to make decisions and take actions for him so please stop it. Moreover if you know someone who may be thinking and/or planning something bad then please confront them and report them to the authorities. We must all be vigilant against the violent and mentally unstable among us regardless of which dogma they use to justify their ideology and actions.

The Human Toll of Terror

P.S. I hate to break it to you but your god doesn’t exist and we have no reason to believe that any other gods exist. At least not any that are aware of, concerned with, and actively influence the affairs on planet Earth so it’s time to stop praying (especially by singing/howling through loud speakers at 5am or any other time) and to start thinking for yourself and acting for a better world.