Carl Jung used the term SYZYGY to denote an archetypal pairing of opposites, which symbolized the communication of the conscious and unconscious minds.


Top NASA Scientist Warns Global Meltdown is Here!

Imperial Arrogance & Oily Obsolescence!
Top NASA Scientist Warns Global Warming Is Here, Claims Censorship by Bush Regime

Jan-29 2006

NASA's top climatologist accused officials President Bush's administration of trying to keep secret a warning he issued about potentially catastrophic changes in Earth's climate caused by rapidly rising levels of greenhouse gases. Do you think global warming is a real and present danger?

Dr. James Hansen, 63, of NASA's Goddard Institute for Space Studies and Columbia University's Earth Institute published a paper last month entitled Is There Still Time to Avoid 'Dangerous Anthropogenic Interference' with Global Climate?

In lay terms, Dr. Hansen's title asks whether there is still time to avoid the potentially catastrophic effects of global warming and other climate changes brought on by increasing levels of greenhouse gases in Earth's atmosphere.

"I present multiple lines of evidence indicating that the Earth's climate is nearing, but has not passed," what Dr. Hansen describes as "a tipping point," a point "beyond which it will be impossible to avoid climate change with far ranging undesirable consequences."

"The changes," Dr. Hansen warns, "include not only loss of the Arctic as we know it, with all that implies for wildlife and indigenous peoples, but losses on a much vaster scale due to worldwide rising seas."

At first, the respected scientist notes, losses of Greenland's ice cap in the North and Antarctica's ice cap in the South will not be rapidly apparent -- because of increases in snowfall and deposition of snow with thickening of some ice sheets.

But those compensating variables are only temporary, Dr. Hansen warned. Soon, the balance will tip, dramatically, even catastrophically; and potentially irreparably.

A resulting global temperature change of two to three degrees Celsius would cause a rise in sea levels on the order of 25 meters, or 80 feet.

One review of Dr. Hansen's work in Sunday's Washington Post describes Earth's temperature as having risen one degree Fahrenheit during the past three decades; but concludes that warming of four degrees Fahrenheit over the next century "imply changes that constitute practically a different planet."

The Post goes on to quote Dr. Hansen as saying in an interview that, "It's not something you can adapt to," and that "We can't let it go on another 10 years like this," he warned. "We've got to do something."

Perhaps as distressing as Dr. Hansen's scientific conclusions were his allegations that officials of President George W. Bush's administration had attempted to prevent him from making his conclusions public.

"They feel their job is to be this censor of information going out to the public," Dr. Hansen said of administration officials, according to Sunday's New York Times.

The Times went on to quote Dean Acosta, deputy assistant administrator for public affairs at the space agency, as saying that Dr. Hansen's description of his report sequestered is "not the way we operate here at NASA," and adding that, "We promote openness and we speak with the facts."

In its report, the New York Times quotes Dr. Hansen as saying that, "Communicating with the public seems to be essential, because public concern is probably the only thing capable of overcoming the special interests that have obfuscated the topic."

Is There Still Time to Avoid "Dangerous Anthropogenic Interference" with Global Climate?
Dr. James E. Hansen

Imperial Arrogance & Oily Obsolescence!

Scientists fear unusual weather behind massive seabird die-off

Monday, January 30, 2006

Alone in the nest, the starving seabird chick looked a little woozy. Then it collapsed.

Hours passed before the desperate mother bird returned, a fish tail sticking out of her beak. Again and again she offered the fresh morsel. But it was too late -- the baby bird was dying.

"It's an ugly, gut-wrenching thing to watch," said University of Washington researcher Julia Parrish, who witnessed such a scene repeatedly last summer, hidden amid the cacophony of 6,000 nesting murres on Tatoosh Island off the Olympic Peninsula.

The murres' unusual mass starvation became a clue in a mystery unfolding along the West Coast.

Weather, scientists know, is the key to the puzzle. For some reason, winds and currents crucial to the marine food web just didn't happen on schedule last year.

Seabird breeding failures in the summer were preceded by tens of thousands of birds washing up dead on beaches in Washington, Oregon and California.

And Washington's largest colony of glaucous-winged gulls also sputtered: Where 8,000 chicks normally fledge, 88 did last year.

"The whole process broke down," Parrish said. "We don't know what happened."

Earlier this month, 45 researchers met in Seattle to hash out the cause.

Though they couldn't trace the source of the weird weather, many are warily eyeing the coming spring, wondering: Was that just a blip, an anomaly -- or is this what global warming looks like?

Recall that at this time last year, Seattleites were cooing about a string of sunny winter days -- if they weren't complaining about the lack of powder on the slopes at Snoqualmie. It was warm and dry. It marked the third year of above-normal ocean temperatures.

Then rain started pouring in early spring. At a time when the birds should have been making and feeding babies, a network of beachcombing citizen-scientists run by Parrish instead found them dead.

"It was the birds that were the first harbingers of this whole problem," said Bill Peterson of the National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration, which set up the Seattle meeting.

The dramatic downturns among certain bird species didn't happen in a vacuum.

Researchers last year also recorded low catches of juvenile salmon and rockfish, and there were sightings of emaciated gray whales. Those findings were preceded by the first-time appearance in Washington of thousands of squid normally not found north of San Francisco. And a kind of plankton typically found near San Diego bloomed along Northwest beaches.

A scientist studying the longest-running set of indicators of Pacific Ocean conditions says we can expect this kind of thing to repeat as the planet warms and weather patterns are altered.

"There are all these unconnected reports of biological failures," said John McGowan of the Scripps Institution of Oceanography in La Jolla, Calif. "It's all the way up and down the coast. ... There's a lot of evidence there are important changes going on in the Pacific coast system."

'The smoking gun'

By the door to Parrish's office is a little sign: "I really need to stop depending on birds for important information. They're cute to look at but don't have much upstairs."

From her perch above a courtyard at UW's College of Ocean and Fishery Sciences in Seattle, Parrish directs the Coastal Observation and Seabird Survey Team. About 300 volunteers scour Oregon and Washington beaches for dead birds.

Based on monthly surveys, researchers estimated the dead birds numbered in the tens of thousands. Dominating the toll were the Brandt's cormorant and the common murre.

"They were clearly starving to death -- no fat, reduced musculature," Parrish said. "The smoking gun is no food."

Unlike migratory birds, they were stuck with what the Northwest coast had to offer. Unlike birds with wider-ranging diets, such as gulls, both rely almost exclusively on diving deep underwater for small schooling baitfish that also feed whales, seals, salmon and other animals.

At Tatoosh Island, it looked like the same story. The murres like fatty, nutritious sand lance, herring, surf smelt and eulachon -- the latter nicknamed "candlefish" because they're so full of oil that, when dried, they can be placed upright and lit to burn like a candle.

For a murre, eating those fish "is like popping little energy bars," Parrish said.

But last summer the murres brought back no sand lance and hardly any herring. Catches of the other two fish also were reduced. Instead Parrish's research team saw them toting fish like the Pacific saury, which they had almost never seen the birds eating in 14 years of watching them.

"The steak and chicken fell out of the diet," Parrish said. "It's like going to the grocery store and (seeing) there are only a few yucky things in the store. You adapt by using what's there."

The phenomenon was widespread. At Triangle Island in British Columbia and California's Farallon Islands, researchers saw a third seabird, the Cassin's auklet, show signs of starvation, said Bill Sydeman of the Point Reyes Bird Observatory.

The Farallon auklets started the breeding season late. Only half as many as normal even tried. Then they abandoned the nests.

"That's unprecedented in 35 years of studying Cassin's auklets on the Farallons" and unnoted in decades of anecdotal accounts before, Sydeman said.

In nearby waters, researchers found a 60 percent reduction from the last year in the birds' primary food, a tiny shrimplike crustacean called krill. Up in British Columbia, the birds eat a different form of plankton -- yet also had trouble raising young.

No one thinks a single year's breeding failure is a catastrophe for overall populations of the birds. They live many years.

But it was unusual and widespread enough to spark urgent questions.

"It's something having to do with food," Sydeman said. "We're all pretty sure."

Weather sparks meeting

Along the coast of Washington and Oregon, researchers think they know what happened: The wind didn't blow.

Usually in the spring, a weather maker called the Aleutian Low that throws winter storms our way moves north. Soon strong winds blow from north to south. Because the Earth is turning to the east, these winds push the surface of the Pacific to the southwest, leaving a little gap in the water near shore.

Water from deep in the ocean surges up to fill the gap. It's cold water, loaded with nutrients from dead plankton, dead fish, fish excrement and more.

"Basically, you can think of it as a lot of schmutz that settles to the bottom," Parrish said.

The cold water is fertilizer to the ocean garden. No cold water, no plankton. No plankton, no sand lance or other "forage fish" -- staples of many fish and birds.

Last year, though, the winds from the north didn't start in March or April as they normally do. Nary a wisp came until late May, and it didn't really get going good until mid-July.

The scientists' meeting in Seattle was organized to bring together oceanographers, atmospheric scientists, marine mammal experts, seabird biologists and researchers who model ecosystems and ocean circulation.

"The weather guys didn't really know what to say other than it was weird weather. That's not very satisfying," said Peterson, the oceanographer.

The term "global warming" oversimplifies a chain of coming changes -- some related to warming, some not, but happening simultaneously, scientists emphasize. Climate change is superimposed on natural cycles.

"We're all scientists. ... We want to know why, and if it could happen again," Peterson said.

Instead, they will write a series of scientific papers carefully documenting their observations.

A look at the past, said Scripps' McGowan, is telling: In the last 30 years, the top 300 feet of the Pacific warmed and became more dense.

Off Southern California, zooplankton are down 70 percent, fish larvae 50 percent, and there have been massive die-offs of kelp. McGowan's institution has studied ocean temperatures since 1919 and started a comprehensive Pacific monitoring project in 1949.

In Puget Sound, the number of seabirds dropped by nearly half since the 1970s. Nearly a third of seabird species are legally protected or candidates for protection.

"All kinds of things are changing, and the biology is responding in funny, non-linear, confusing ways," McGowan said. "Not everything has declined, but many things have."

Gulls abandon nests

The largest gathering of nesting seabirds in Washington happens every summer at Protection Island, between Sequim and Port Townsend off the northeast Olympic Peninsula. It's also the state's largest colony of glaucous-winged gulls.

There, researcher Joe Galusha of Walla Walla College has studied the gulls for 25 years. Last year the birds began gathering as usual. About 8,000 paired up, established nests and laid eggs -- just as always.

The gulls seemed to have no trouble gathering food -- unlike the murres at Tatoosh Island.

The gulls have a much less specialized diet than the murres, which may explain the difference, Parrish said.

Even so, most of the gulls later abandoned their nests.

Galusha thinks bald eagles may be to blame. When he started watching the gulls in 1980, the eagles' numbers were way down. Perhaps seven or eight harassed the 8,000 or so gulls by the early 1990s.

Their numbers grew gradually to the point that last summer, up to 38 different eagles menaced the gulls simultaneously.

Every time, the gulls had to take flight -- which burns energy. Most simply gave up.

In the end, 88 chicks were fledged where 8,000 to 10,000 normally are.

"We classify that as catastrophic reproductive failure," Galusha said.

Simple, right? Maybe not. Galusha and others still want to know why eagles are increasingly turning to Protection Island. Is their food supply also in flux?

"Next summer is key," Galusha said. "This may simply have been an aberration."

The Sea Doc Society, a University of California-Davis research arm, is about to fund a study by Parrish to investigate seabird diets in the Puget Sound region.

Nathan Mantua, a UW scientist studying the effects of climate change on the Northwest, said he will run climate simulations to see how often this kind of thing could have been expected in the past and how often we might expect it as man-made greenhouse gases alter the climate.

"We don't know if it's just a random thing or something we might expect to see more or less of in the future," Mantua said. "If you're thinking this is just an unlucky roll of the dice, how often will it happen again?"


With ocean temperatures warming to unusually high levels over the last three years, scientists noted a string of unusual happenings affecting marine life from northern California to Alaska.

Triangle Island: Nesting success plummeted for the Cassin's auklet, a seabird, in 2005.

Lake Washington and Ship Canal: About half the 2004 run of sockeye salmon -- some 200,000 fish -- failed to materialize. Scientists suspect overly warm water was the cause.

Whidbey Island: A Humboldt squid, normally found in Mexico and southern California, turned up on the beach on Jan. 2.

Protection Island: Last summer, glaucous-winged gulls that normally fledge about 8,000 chicks produced only 88.

Tatoosh Island: Breeding started late for common murres last spring. Only about one-fifth fledged chicks, compared to up to four-fifths in a good year.

Northwest Coast: Tens of thousands of common murres and Brandt's cormorants -- emaciated at a time of year they should be flush -- turned up dead on Oregon and Washington beaches in spring 2005.

Southern Washington to Alaska Panhandle: Numerous sightings of Humbolt squid, which normally lives off Southern California and farther south, in summer 2004.

Northwest coast: Gray whales migrating from Mexico to the Bering Sea had so exhausted their fat reserves that their bodies were misshapen as they passed by last spring.

Northwest coast: Scientists trawling for young salmon found counts extremely low in spring and fall 2005.

Northern California: Scientists trawling for young rock- fish found counts very low in 2005.

Farallon Islands: Auklets that abandoned their nests in unprecedented numbers. Where hundreds of chicks normally are produced, only a handful were in 2005. Lack of food is blamed.

Monterey, Calif.: Large number of seabirds found dead on beaches in spring 2005.

Imperial Arrogance & Apocalypse!

Apocalypse Bush!
Why Care for the Planet When the End Times are Almost Here?

by Mark Morford
San Francisco Chronicle

This is the great thing about rabid fundamentalism. You really just don't have to give a damn.

Take the environment. I mean, isn't it just a little pointless to care so damn deeply about the air and the soil and the water and the stupid little disposable animals on this silly spinning ball of expendable rock when the Second Coming is imminent and a blood-soaked fire-breathin' Jesus who looks remarkably like Mel Gibson will return very soon to smite the heathens and the gays and the vegetarians and the Francophiles, and who will rescue all those who worship patriarchy and country music and blue-chip oil portfolios? You're goddamn right it is.

Look. This much has become clear. Bush is, more than anything else, an extreme fundamentalist Christian. He is widely regarded as the most openly pious and sanctimonioous president in modern American history. He actually preaches the GOP screed in evangelical churches across America. He panders so slavishly to the anti-choicers and the Bible-thumpers and the homophobes it makes Jerry Falwell swoon and giggle.

And Bush actually says, out loud, that God speaks through him, and that God is on our side we bomb the living crap out of Afghanistan and Iraq and that it is the Almighty's wish that we take control of these angry pip-squeak nations and in so doing kill thousands of civilians and tens of thousands of young Iraqi soldiers, as over 1,000 American soldiers are now dead over a makeshift cause that never really existed. God wanted it this way, that's why.

Bush has called Jesus his "favorite philosopher." He has claimed that the act of being "born-again" saved him from a long, sad life of vaguely homoerotic frat parties and repetitive binge drinking and going AWOL from the National Guard, all so he could turn his full attention to righteously ruining multiple businesses and then making Texas the most murderous and polluted state in the union.

But, you know, why stop there?

God, of course, isn't just about the current Iraqi war. Bush understands this. Nor is God just about slamming gays or creating nasty, isolationist foreign policy. God is not merely about setting those gul-dang Muslim heathens straight about who is the supreme big-daddy all-powerful mega-righteous SUV-drivin' American-flag-wavin' God and who is just a dimestore wannabe false idol scruffy Allah.

Because above all, God is nothing if not all about putting a quick and fiery stop to all this Earthly nonsense ASAP. He is nothing if not all about the coming apocalypse. And He is nothing if not all about saving those who believe, as Bush does, that he is among the chosen to be saved.

This is the fundamentalist truth. And this is the BushCo maxim. The End Times provide the ultimate meaning, the final straw, the only thing worth caring about, because it defines the BushCo worldview like nothing else except maybe embarrassing grammar and crushing deficits and a secret craving for gin. You can see it in his sad, vacant eyes: Bush is absolutely convinced that God is a Republican. Why else would He create all those cool M-1 tanks and oil refineries and those neat deer-antler chandeliers? Exactly.

Do you see? Do you get it? If not, you haven't been reading nearly enough of those silly pulpy sociopathic gazillion-selling "Left Behind" doomsday books so frighteningly adored by the Christian Right. It's simple, really: The world is gonna end real soon. The End Times are comin'. All the signs are in place -- famine, war, disease, sodomy, fires, hurricanes, Avril Lavigne -- and Bush, by instigating holy wars and inciting more terrorism and burning through the planet's natural resources as fast as humanly possible, is merely hastening the blessedly inevitable. As his fellow fundamentalists say, God bless him.

Hey, it explains a lot, this view. It explain how Bush can just smirk and mumble and, with one big, heartless shrug, dismiss the complete lack of WMD and the loss of 1.6 million U.S. jobs and the nation's staggering $422 billion budget deficit. Pay down the national debt? Bah. Planet's going to hell anyway, people. Stock up on nuclear missiles and get yourself an escape pod. Can't afford one? Whatta shame.

It surely explains the general GOP hatred of gay marriage, of open-hearted sex, of those wicked, sin-inducing vaginas (that harlot Eve is gonna pay, dammit), of environmentalism, of caring about air quality and water quality and the EPA and organic foods and homeopathic medicine and resource management and the Alaska Wildlife Refuge and the U.N. and any country that doesn't have a McDonald's and a Starbucks and a decent strip club for lonely gin-soaked Republican expats.

And it explains not only the outright contempt for any view other than Bush's own, but the willingness to legislate that hatred, codify it, to make it outright illegal to think or feel or love otherwise.

Look at it this way: When you have an angry, patriotic God and the red-hot promise of the juicy apocalypse on your side, there is no such thing as a counter-argument. There is no such thing as competition. There is no such thing as giving a damn what anyone else thinks.

How else do you explain it? How else can you understand the most aggressive, war-hungry, abusive, nature-loathing, isolationist administration in American history? How else can you explain BushCo's overall "F" grade from every environmental organization in the world? How can you explain his mauling of long-term Social Security planning? The decimation of the idea of universal health care? A pre-emptive, attack-first-ask-questions-never, warmongering policy that creates more anti-U.S. hatred by the minute?

How can you explain the fact that every human rights organization on the planet is appalled by Bush's actions? Guantanamo Bay to Abu Ghraib to John Ashcroft to the Patriot Act to gutting funding for international women's health care. Hey, if God had wanted us to care about other viewpoints, He would've made everyone speak English. Can I get a "hell yeah?"

This lust for apocalyptica, then, is perhaps the best way we have to at least partially understand the shamelessness of this administration's policies and its blatant disregard for international law, its open hatred of any nation that disagrees with us and the deep, profound concern only for nations that either cower in our God-flexin' presence and/or have resources that Bush's corporate pals are salivating to exploit.

And it is the perhaps ultimate explanation for the Right's final cattle call, its bitter war cry of a message, its exact parallel to every pseudo-religious evangelical scam artist on late-night cable TV.

Listen, good people of America. If you just send your money to the party and give up all that careful, nuanced thinking, if you just quite questioning our decisions and load up on blind faith, it will all be OK and you can have all the guns and fast food you want and those terrifying gays will leave you alone because BushCo will take care of you and God will reserve your seat on the glory train to salvation. Deal? Praise Jesus! Praise Bush/Cheney! Hallelujah you are saved! Even as we are, you know, doomed.

Isn't bogus salvation fun?

Imperial Arrogance & Oily Obsolescence!

Top 10 Ways to Destroy Earth
By Sam Hughes
Special to LiveScience

Destroying the Earth is harder than you may have been led to believe.

You've seen the action movies where the bad guy threatens to destroy the Earth. You've heard people on the news claiming that the next nuclear war or cutting down rainforests or persisting in releasing hideous quantities of pollution into the atmosphere threatens to end the world.