“Plan for the future because that’s where you are going to spend the rest of your life.” Mark Twain
This original article from 2009 shows the results of decades of scientific study and measurement. It is 2012 now. What serious consideration have our world leaders shown to addresses the inevitable changes to earth’s ocean and it’s ability to sustain life?
This article is not wasting it’s time pointing fingers at causes. This article wants to stir active participation by humans, who don’t want to suffer because of world governments’ inaction. Earth is changing, and humans have the ability to adapt to what is coming. Inaction is suicide.
Our leaders must make the connection between global economy, earth changes and earth’s ability to sustain human life. Getting rich now by grabbing what the earth has left to offer is a child’s solution with no foresight. When the resources run out, and the coastline has risen, humans will be packed into ever shrinking habitable places. Shrinking land mass must be shared with the land our food grows on. So, the political nonsense the world finds itself in can destroy the human race, if alternatives are not found.
This article states scientific reality and projected scenarios. The only political angle to the reason for this article, is that today’s leaders are distracted from doing anything about it. Power and money is not going to stop the earth from changing. Our immediate interests and our future interest in the planet that supports us, must be distinguished. As human beings, we must use the intelligence our species is so proud of, to adapt to earth’s natural cycles. We know what the earth is capable of because evidence is all around. What we haven’t learned is what humanity plans to do to survive.
About 3.7 million Americans live within a few feet of high tide and risk being hit by more frequent coastal flooding in coming decades because of the sea level rise caused by global warming, according to new research.
“Sea level rise is like an invisible tsunami, building force while we do almost nothing,” said Benjamin H. Strauss, an author, with other scientists, of two new papers outlining the research. “We have a closing window of time to prevent the worst by preparing for higher seas.”
The project on sea level rise led by Dr. Strauss for the nonprofit organization Climate Central appears to be the most elaborate effort in decades to estimate the proportion of the national population at risk from the rising sea. The papers are scheduled for publication on Wednesday by the journal Environmental Research Letters. The work is based on the 2010 census and on improved estimates, compiled by federal agencies, of the land elevation near coastlines and of tidal levels throughout the country.
STOCKHOLM, March 10 (Xinhua) — Climate scientists warned on Tuesday that sea level rise could exceed one meter by 2100 if governments fail to control global warming effectively, said reports from Copenhagen.
“The upper range of sea level rise by 2100 could be in the range of about one meter, or possibly more,” said a statement released by climate scientists at a three-day gathering in Copenhagen from Monday in preparation for the UN Climate Change Conference due in December in Denmark.
The estimate almost doubles the projection of 18 cm to 59 cm by the end of the century made in previous studies.
“In the lower end of the spectrum it looks increasingly unlikely that sea level rise will be much less than 50 cm by 2100,” the statement said.
Sea rise ‘to exceed projections’
The global sea level looks set to rise far higher than forecast because of changes in the polar ice-sheets, a team of researchers has suggested.
The first 2009 Summit was held in England. There are more planned for 2009:
3rd Annual Climate Change UK Summit
Given the current economic climate when companies are tightening their belts, how can you keep climate change and environmental sustainability at the top of the agenda and keep the level of growth at the same time?
2009 Macao International Environmental Co-operation Forum & Exhibition (MIECF)Date: Apr. 2-4, 2009 Location: Macao , China
Sustainabilitylive! 2009 Date: May 19-21, 2009 Location: Birmingham, UK
The Global Corporate Responsibility Reporting Summit 2009 Date: Jun. 11-12, 2009 Location: Brussels, Belgium
15th Annual International Sustainable Development Research Conference Date: Jul. 5-8, 2009 Location: Utrecht, The Netherlands
Indian Environment Summit 2009 Date: Sep. 14-16, 2009 Location: New Delhi, India
IES 2009 Water & Waste Water Conference Date: Sep. 14-16, 2009 Location: New-Delhi, India
Doesn’t anyone realize the investment bonanza that rising sea levels bring? Houses must be moved or put on stilts. House boats will be the next real estate extravaganza. “Aquatecture” is the terminology. Marinas must re-tool to accept more populations. Many innovative companies have already introduced floating communities. Many forward thinking futurists have already made advanced proposals accepting the inevitable consequence of global warming and ice melts. None of these proposals address the cause, they address the effect. They address solutions.
As fears of global warming induced population displacement are steadily
realized, the allure of waterborne aquatecture becomes more and more enticing. Designed by Alexander Asadov, this incredible floating Aerohotel features a lighter-than-air aesthetic that sits serenely atop an elegant system of supports. Conceived as an elevated aquatic structure replete with hanging gardens, the space-age floating island preserves the entire extent of the ecosystem beneath it, contrasting with man-made islands that disrupt their immediate environment with tons of gravel fill.
BBC News UPDATE:
Netherlands learns to go with the flow
One person with a vision of how the Dutch can adapt to the “living with water” lifestyle is architect Alexander Henny.
One solution is to build floating houses that rise and fall with the tide
He is one of the country’s top designers of floating houses, and calls his practice “Aquatecture”.
“There’s a concrete foundation that floats, which is hard to understand for most people, but because it is hollow it is lighter than the water,” he told the programme.
“In the lower part of the house, which is submerged, are the sleeping quarters. On the top is the living room and kitchen.”
But living on the water is still only for a tiny proportion of the population. The government has stated that its emphasis is to protect those on land.
Can earth’s population risk ignoring the inevitable? Earth’s natural climate cycles swing between extremes of hot and cold. History and Science have documented dozens of climate changes and life form adaptations. Creatures that cannot or will not adapt become extinct. Humans
are divided into those who embrace adaptation and those who don’t. This is the human condition of denial. This may be the best scenario in the long run. Humans, unable to adapt, will fall to the Darwin theory and expire, allowing survival of the fittest. Sadly, humans in denial have the resources to adapt, but refuse to adapt because of ideological brainwashing.
The North American continent will loose millions of acres of workable land mass. Much of the remaining land will become swamp. The unfortunate consequence, of backward thinking, is the release of more pollution and toxic material from corporate ‘cost saving’ measures. Fresh water technology will be another market boom.
Scrubbing the waste from past generations in order to support future generations is the most daunting immediate challenge. Remaining land must become dedicated to growing food.
The 1995 movie failure Waterworld contributed insight into an extreme vision of the world after both polar ice caps melt. The story is long and received poor reception, its concept was too far ahead of its time. Science fiction of the 1990s was more attuned to outer space scenarios. Perhaps it would be more thoughtfully received today. Underwater cities are also a viable future vision for survival. After all, if we emerged from the sea millions of years ago, it should be a natural cycle to return as a means to survive.
With what we know now, and the technology available now, humanity has no excuse.
US and World leaders must step away from suppression ideologies,
accusations, and finger pointing, instead, focus on:
1. reducing contributing factors and
2. preparing for alternative living arrangements
3. seriously working with alternative energy
4. seriously working to prepare human communities
5. seriously focus on the timeframe available to work solutions
6. prepare for the massive environmental diaspora
Check out this great idea … Underwater Habitats
If you remain skeptical about the natural processes that define earth’s personality, please don’t stand in the way of those serious about preparing for survival. Weather alone should be the best clue that something is changing. It took the 9/11 catastrophe to awaken Americans that threats from abroad are real. The increasingly unusual weather patterns should be another wake up call. 9/11 sent America on a war of revenge. The climate crisis should send us on a war against ignorance.
The Texas Progressive Alliance is back from the conventions and focused on the fall as it brings you this week’s roundup.
Off the Kuff reminds you that your voter registration status is in the hands of a bureaucrat who might mistake you for someone else.
BossKitty at TruthHugger knows why politicians always hire professional marketers. Americans have been conditioned to react predictably, and marketers know how to sway the voter and consumer, that’s why America Is Pavlov’s Dog.
The James Cargas campaign sunk to a new low over the weekend with an e-mail to precinct chairs criticizing a single mother’s primary voting record. PDiddie at Brains and Eggs reminds voters of Congressional District 7 that there’s a corporate Democrat and a community Democrat running for the Democratic nomination, and which one represents the party in a November should be a very easy choice, no matter where on the spectrum you fall.
WCNews at Eye on Williamson says it’s time for Democrats to change tactics, to advocate for the poor, working and middle classes again. There is nothing left to lose.
Neil at Texas Liberal posted about 2012 Juneteenth observances and celebrations in Galveston, Houston and College Station. This post also has Juneteenth history links. Juneteenth 2012 is on Tuesday, June 19.
Armed robbers hit state treasury (1865)
On this day in 1865, an estimated fifty desperadoes broke into the state treasury in Austin, one of the boldest crimes in Texas history. The robbery occurred during the chaotic period immediately after the downfall of the Confederacy in the spring of 1865. Gen. Nathan G. Shelley informed George R. Freeman, a Confederate veteran and leader of a small company of volunteer militia, that the robbery was imminent. By the time Freeman and about twenty of his troops arrived at the treasury, the robbers were in the building. A brief gunfight erupted in which one of the robbers was mortally wounded; all the other robbers fled toward Mount Bonnell, west of Austin, carrying with them about $17,000 in specie, more than half of the gold and silver in the state treasury. None was ever captured. The loot was never recovered, although some of the money was found strewn between the treasury building and Mount Bonnell. Freeman and his company of volunteers were later recognized by the state for their service in defending the public treasury, but the resolution providing a reward for their services never passed the legislature.
Consequences of loosing the Civil War
For a time, Texas was lawless, without either civil or military authority. In most places, local efforts prevented complete chaos. In Austin, a civilian mob of women and children, white and black, attacked and looted abandoned storehouses. A band of ex-soldiers wrote the final ignominious chapter of the Confederacy. They sacked the unguarded treasury building in Austin and stole $17,000 in gold and silver from the people of Texas — more than half the hard currency in the treasury.
On June 19, 1865, federal military authority was established in Texas when Union general Gordon Granger arrived in Galveston. Granger proclaimed the end of slavery (an event that later became known as Juneteenth), declared the laws of the Confederacy null and void, and announced that all cotton was now public property.
Civilian government was restored on July 25, when General Wesley Merritt and the 18th New York Cavalry escorted Andrew Jackson Hamilton to the Capitol building in Austin. The Austin attorney and Unionist had fled Texas for his life in 1862 and offered his services to the United States. A hero in the North, he was now back home—as the new federal governor of Texas. Reconstruction had begun.
Toll of War
About 70,000 Texans served in the Confederate army. They fought in every theater and almost every battle of the war. Texans earned a legendary reputation for valor. Hood’s Texas Brigade (Antietam), Terry’s Texas Rangers (Shiloh, Murfreesboro, Chickamauga, Chattanooga, and others), Walker’s Texas Division (Red River campaign), Granbury’s Texas Brigade (Missionary Ridge, Franklin), and Ross’s Texas Brigade (Atlanta) were among the most storied troops in the entire Confederacy.
The overall toll of the war was ruinous. The cost in human lives was only the most obvious price to pay. Thousands of individuals and families were totally impoverished by the war. The state’s infrastructure—roads, railroads, harbors—was a wreck, and even livestock and wagons were in short supply after years of military impressment. The civilian population had suffered through shortages, vigilantism, and disruption of normal family life, schooling, and work. On the frontier, the difficulties of manning a defensive force led to about 400 civilians being killed, wounded, or taken prisoner in Indian attacks.
The state treasury was bankrupt. Texans had paid in more than $1.2 million to support the Confederacy (almost $200 million in today’s money). The Confederacy died owing Texas about $340,000 ($4 million in today’s dollars) for ordnance, supplies, and medical supplies furnished by the Lone Star State.
Luling philanthropist celebrates oil deal with huge barbecue (1926)
Killing of sheriff precipitates ballad tradition (1901)
On this day in 1901, Gregorio Lira Cortez shot and killed Karnes County sheriff W. T. Morris and fled. The apparent misunderstandings that led to the killing, and the extended pursuit, capture, and trials of Cortez made him a folk hero. His exploits are celebrated in many variants of El Corrido de Gregorio Cortez, a popular ballad that has inspired books and at least one movie. Cortez, a Mexican native, was farming near Kenedy in 1901, when Sheriff Morris and his deputy, Boon Choate, questioned him about a stolen horse. With Choate interpreting, a misunderstanding apparently occurred that caused Morris to shoot and wound Cortez’s brother Romaldo, after which Cortez shot and killed Morris. While newspapers followed the subsequent manhunt, Cortez became a hero to many Hispanics and some Anglos. Violent reprisals and a series of trials and appeals followed. During them, Cortez was held in eleven jails in eleven counties, after which he was finally granted a conditional pardon and released in 1913. The corrido lionizing him was sung as early as 1901.
Fraudulent petition seeks organization of Loving County (1893)
On this day in 1893, the organizers of the Loving Canal and Irrigation Company filed a petition with the Reeves County Commissioners Court requesting separate organization for Loving County. In 1887 the Texas legislature had separated Loving County from Tom Green County, but it remained attached to Reeves County for judicial purposes. Loving County is the only Texas county to be organized twice. The first organization appears to have been a scheme to defraud on the part of the organizers. Although the 1890 United States census reported a population of only three in Loving County, the petition filed with the Reeves County Commissioners Court three years later was signed by 150 allegedly qualified voters. In the ensuing county election eighty-three votes were reported, and county organization was approved. In the spring of 1894, however, only three people were found to be living in Mentone, the county seat. Loving County reportedly held a second election of county officials in November 1894, but there is evidence that neither election was legitimate. The legislature deorganized Loving County in 1897, reattaching it to Reeves County. After Mentone was abandoned in 1897, no town existed in Loving County. The 1900 census reported a county population of eleven females and twenty-two males, all white. With the discovery of oil in the county in the 1920s, the population grew, and the county was organized a second time in 1931. The oil town of Ramsey was renamed Mentone and became the county seat.
“Father of black Baptists in Texas” dies in La Marque (1898)
Black San Antonio political leader dies (1937)
“Texas bird lady” hatched in Corsicana (1886)
On this day in 1886, Conger Neblett was born in Corsicana. In 1926 she married Jack Hagar, a Bostonian who had come to Texas because of his interests in oil and real estate. In 1935 the Hagars moved to Rockport, where Connie Hagar spent the rest of her life as an amateur bird-watcher and gained the respect of professional ornithologists in Europe and the United States. The “Texas bird lady” added over twenty new species to the avifauna list of the state and was the first to report numerous species of migratory birds, including several that were thought to be extinct. She died in 1973 and was buried in a spot overlooking the wildlife sanctuary that bears her name.
Higher education comes to vast Big Bend region (1920)
Race riot erupts in Beaumont (1943)
On this day in 1943, whites and blacks clashed in Beaumont after workers at a local shipyard learned that a white woman had accused a black man of raping her. On the evening of June 15 more than 2,000 workers, plus perhaps another 1,000 interested bystanders, marched toward City Hall. Even though the woman could not identify the suspect among the blacks held in the city jail, the workers dispersed into small bands and proceeded to terrorize black neighborhoods in central and north Beaumont. Many blacks were assaulted, several businesses were pillaged, a number of buildings were burned, and more than 100 homes were ransacked. Acting Texas governor A. M. Aikin, Jr., placed Beaumont under martial law. More than 200 people were arrested, fifty were injured, and two–one black and one white–were killed. Another black man died later of injuries received during the riot. Twenty-nine of those arrested were turned over to civil authorities on charges of assault and battery, unlawful assembly, and arson. The remainder were released, mostly because of lack of evidence.
Texas woman becomes the first black licensed pilot (1921)
On this day in 1921, Bessie Coleman became the world’s first licensed black pilot. The native of Atlanta, Texas, graduated from high school in Waxahachie and attended Colored Agricultural and Normal University in Oklahoma. After moving to Chicago, she went to France and attended the aviation school at Le Crotoy. The Federation Aeronautique Internationale issued her a pilot’s license. She flew in her first air show at Curtiss Field near Manhattan in 1922. She afterward took part in many more shows while touring the country, and her daredevil stunts earned her the nickname “Brave Bessie.” She was killed during a test flight on April 30, 1926, at Jacksonville, Florida. She is buried in Lincoln Cemetery at Chicago. A Chicago street is named Bessie Coleman Drive, and a United States commemorative stamp in her honor was issued in 1995.
Founder of Sacred Heart Academy joins Dominican order (1863)
French Colonists arrive at La Réunion (1855)
On this day in 1855 some 200 French colonists arrived at the colony of La Réunion, located on the south bank of the Trinity River in central Dallas County within the present city limits of Dallas. La Réunion was founded as a utopian experiment by Victor Prosper Considérant, one of the leading democratic socialist figures in France. The 1855 arrivals landed in Galveston, traveled overland from the coast, reached Dallas in April, and arrived at La Réunion on June 16. Although many settlers left the colony soon after they arrived, new colonists kept the population fairly constant for about two years; the number of residents peaked at around 350 in the fall of 1856. La Réunion existed as a serious communal organization for only about eighteen months. Financial insolvency killed the colony.
The Texas Progressive Alliance is ready to get conventional as it brings you this week’s roundup.
Off the Kuff has his and others’ reactions to the election results from last week.
BossKitty at TruthHugger is ashamed that America’s leaders find it expedient to hand the reins of Public Education over to corporate interests. Education is designed to show us what is already known, and guide us to discover what we need to know. But. that interferes with the bottom line – Climate Change – America’s Leaders Paid To Mislead.
After being from Early March to late May the Texas Primary in 2012 finally took place. WCNews at Eye on Williamson posted this Statewide Primary Analysis.
Poor Seamus the dog was NOT the only car-roof victim of Mitt Romney’s abuse that terrible day in 1983, and PDiddie at Brains and Eggs has video from the archives of the New Hampshire State Police that prove it.
CouldBeTrue of South Texas Chisme wants you to know John Cornyn is trying to pass off the funding of basic infrastructure from the Feds to the counties. Nice trick, you rapist enabler, you.
At TexasKaos, Lightseeker reports on two “drive me crazy” primary outcomes now that the primary electoral smoke has cleared. There is A Conversation We Need to Have about the once and future fate of the Texas Democratic Party and by extension all Progressive efforts here in the state.
The Lewisville Texan Journal finds itself agreeing with GOP Rep Michael Burgess’s bipartisan bill to increase healthcare pricing transparency, but warns that the move will only help up to a point; using existing hospital price data from Texas, they show how difficult it can be to comparison shop healthcare facilities.
Neil at Texas Liberal, who has not forgotten that the Texas forced sonogram law is state-mandated rape, wrote about the multiple meanings of the Houston Ship Channel.
The Texas Progressive Alliance says “on to the runoffs!” as it brings you this holiday week roundup.
Off the Kuff looked at the latest strange poll results from UT and the Texas Tribune.
This week WCNews at Eye On Williamson posts on The continuing right-wing assault on public education in Texas.
The endorsement of the three previous Democrats who lost to John Culberson is hardly a worthy vote of confidence, but that didn’t deter one candidate in CD-07, who went on to suggest that he would win the November contest by 51.3%. That spin, however, was topped by his estimate of 73% of fewer than one hundred people in a straw poll at a barbecue suggesting “overwhelming” support. PDiddie at Brains and Eggs reminds you that if a Congressional candidate exaggerates this wildly in May, he just doesn’t deserve to be on the ballot in November.
Lightseeker explores what the triumph of Republican fear mongering and pandering means to our political futures here and in the country. Check out Sobering Thoughts on Our Political Future over at TexasKaos.
CouldBeTrue of South Texas Chisme applauds the efforts of AACT Now in getting out the vote. Please continue through November.
The Texas Progressive Alliance reminds you that early voting for the 2012 primaries continues through Friday as it brings you this week’s roundup.
Off the Kuff sincerely hopes there’s am an uprising among parents and educators over the way public education was treated last session, but he’s still waiting for the campaign rhetoric to match the reporting about it.
BossKitty at TruthHugger was moved by an award winning documentary and saw the connection to the current state of mental health in Texas, and everywhere else. Here are Lessons of The Weeping Camel for Texas.
BlueBloggin had not anticipated how long America would engage in war. Enough men and women have been exposed to combat, cruelty and death, to populate a small country. Americans must be prepared for When They Come Home – Critical Update.
There aren’t many Democrats earning the endorsement of PDiddie at Brains and Eggs, but the most important one of the 2012 primary cycle in Harris County is Lissa Squiers for Congress. And Sean Hubbard for US Senate. Oh, and Rachel Van Os for state party chair (election to be held at the state convention in Houston in June). And maybe a few more coming in the week before Election Day.
This week in GOP infighting. Should Lt. Gov. David Dewhurst win his bid for the US Senate, picking his replacement will be a proxy war between Gov. Perry and Speaker Straus. WCNews at Eye On Williamson has the rest of the story, The tie-breaker.
Libby Shaw puts Repug redistricting in prospective in her latest posting: The Gerrymander Cowards. Check it out at TexasKaos.
Neil at Texas Liberal posted a picture of a cigarette machine that he saw last week in Houston. If you can imagine, the cigarettes cost $10 a pack in this machine.
Justin at Asian American Action Fund Blog strongly supports Gene Wu in the race to succeed Scott Hochberg in HD-137.
CouldBeTrue of South Texas Chisme notes that Texas is #1 – in workplace discrimination complaints.
Another critical update: As of 3 June, the army’s 2012 active-duty suicides reached 154, compared with 130 in the same period last year, the Pentagon confirmed Suicides have outnumbered combat deaths in US troops in 2008 and 2009.
Sunday, May 20, 2012 – CHICAGO — The United States and NATO leaders are insisting the Afghanistan fighting coalition will remain whole despite France’s plans to yank combat troops out early, but leaders weary of plummeting public support for the war are using an alliance summit Sunday to show they want to move quickly away from the front lines.
“There will be no rush for the exits,” NATO Secretary General Anders Fogh Rasmussen said Sunday. “Our goal, our strategy, our timetable remains unchanged.”
Public opinion in Europe and the United States is solidly against the war, with a majority of Americans now saying it is unwinnable or not worth continuing.
By THOM SHANKER WASHINGTON — President Obama on Sunday will unveil a new package of NATO initiatives that includes the alliance purchasing a fleet of surveillance drones, sharing weapons and training facilities, and sustaining nuclear deterrence in Europe even as disarmament efforts continue with an often belligerent Russia, according to senior administration officials.
Although debate on winding down the Afghan war will dominate the NATO summit meeting in Chicago, Mr. Obama will also disclose agreements designed to guarantee mutual security in an era of global austerity that includes sharply reduced military spending across the alliance.
A central element of Mr. Obama’s announcement will be the hand-over to NATO of control for the components of an emerging European missile-defense system built by the United States.
A radar station in Turkey will become permanently under alliance command. In times of crisis, American Navy Aegis warships — with radar and interceptor missiles — would be transferred to NATO command. When interceptor missiles planned for Poland and Romania are in place, they would also be placed under NATO command in time of crisis.
Another major agreement is that the alliance will purchase and maintain five Global Hawk surveillance drones, said one administration official, who spoke on the condition of anonymity to describe the initiatives in advance of the meeting.
Although NATO carried out an offensive that toppled Libya’s Col. Muammar el-Qaddafi, the campaign revealed a critical gap in the alliance’s war-fighting capabilities: The United States had a near monopoly on surveillance and reconnaissance aircraft, and NATO needed its own remotely piloted vehicles.
As the Pentagon reduces the number of Army brigades permanently in Europe, the United States will pledge to rotate units through training facilities on the Continent so the ability for allied and American troops to fight side-by-side is sustained even after withdrawing from Afghanistan.
Mr. Obama also will describe the results of NATO’s review of its defense and deterrence posture, and how the alliance will field a combination of nuclear weapons, missile defenses and conventional forces to guarantee the security of all members.
No reductions in NATO’s nuclear arsenals will be announced, although the door remains open to negotiations with Russia on shrinking stockpiles.
NATO nations in Central and Eastern Europe remain particularly nervous about aggressive talk from Russia’s returning president, Vladimir V. Putin, and want continued assurances of an alliance nuclear umbrella.
Similarly, the alliance will pledge to continue air patrols over the territory of Baltic nations in NATO, so those states do not have to invest in fighter jets. The alliance will also announce initiatives to share maritime patrol aircraft, route-clearance vehicles and medical facilities, as well as pool maintenance costs for helicopters and armored vehicles.
If and when American troops home from Afghanistan, the fabric of American culture will be tested. Between the start of the Afghanistan War in October 2001 and today, the character of the war has morphed from the passion of revenge, to the forgotten child, to the head of the class. Afghanistan has America’s undivided attention, now that the ramp down is supposed to be in process. The international consequences will be argued for the next decade. The economic cost will be felt and debated for decades to come, but the human cost remains forever. After all, war is the most expensive folly humans engage in, because investment in destruction is always required, and instruments of destruction are expensive. But, reconstruction is sooooo profitable. This is a great philosophy for inanimate objects, but terrible for living things. The profits are always corporate, and corporations will go through the motions of charity. However, the individual and their family is left with whatever safety net the American Congress claims it can afford, that also will be argued for decades.
WIKI: On 1 December 2009, U.S. President Barack Obama announced that he would deploy an additional 30,000 soldiers over a period of six months. He also set a withdrawal date for the year 2014. Since that declaration many more soldiers, civilians and contractors have been injured, maimed or killed. Thousands of troops are coming home. Those troops are in various stages of condition. Hopefully, the vast majority will adjust with little or no problem as they integrate back into American society. But, that still leaves a great number of casualties that will need special attention for their wounds, no matter how they are classified.
The US Military is very cautious about classifying injuries, because those injuries have dollar signs assigned to them. This is where the Veteran’s Administration and the US Military have to behave like insurance companies. Congress reminds each government agency that it is all about budget and funding, every day. The assignment is to question each claim, as if it were false. Too many valid claims are dismissed only because the reporting officer did sloppy paperwork or lost it or cannot remember, did not take an injury seriously because it was not reported right away, or some other issue with the soldier making the claim. Whatever the condition of the claim and paperwork is in, and wherever it is in the processing pipeline, there is a human casualty that paperwork represents … WAITING for a decision. Most of the time, the casualty asking for help is in limbo. Many times, a soldier’s identity has been compromised while they were deployed. Sometimes the home or car they left behind is being repossessed. Maybe their family has been having financial or emotional difficulties. Many times the job they expected does not exist anymore. The challenge of adjusting back into a ‘civilized’ environment has trauma of it’s own.
WIKI: A strategic partnership agreement between Afghanistan and the United States was signed by the US President Obama and Afghan President Hamid Karzai in May 2012. After the signing Obama laid out his plans to responsibly end the war in Afghanistan. The plans call for 1.) the removal of 23.000 US troops at the summer end of 2012, i.e. at at the end of September 2012, 2.) Afghan security forces to take the lead in combat operations by the end of 2013 while ISAF forces train, advise and assist the Afghans and fight alongside them when needed and 3.) the complete removal of all U.S. troops by the end of 2014, except for trainers who will assist Afghan forces and a small contingent of troops with a specific mission to combat al-Qaeda through counter-terrorism operations..
The Human Cost of Combat and Occupation for Iraq and Afghanistan – iCASUALTIES REPORT
320,000 Vets Have Brain Injuries – War Veterans’ Concussions Are Often Overlooked – 18 Vet Suicides Per Day?
I am re-posting this article from July 2008, about returning combat veterans. Many of these veterans are experiencing the same problems as Joseph Dwyer. When I first wrote this story, four years ago, I had not anticipated how long America would engage in war. Iraq and Afghanistan exposed enough young men and women to combat, cruelty and death, to populate a small country.
Between 2001 and 2012 the casualties on both sides include thousands of unintended victims. Yes, many are intended victims, but this has been a very sloppy war, too reminiscent of Viet Nam. To kill and maim so many civilians when only a handful of “enemy combatants” are the target, is abominable. Sorry, we are here fighting a war in your back yard, you just happen to be in the way … and we will be here for a long time destroying our mental health.
Soldier in famous photo never defeated ‘demons’
They found Dwyer lying on his back, his clothes soiled with urine and feces. Scattered on the floor around him were dozens of spent cans of Dust-Off, a refrigerant-based aerosol normally used to clean electrical equipment.
Dwyer told police Lt. Mike Wilson he’d been “huffing” the aerosol.
“Help me, please!” the former Army medic begged Wilson. “I’m dying. Help me. I can’t breathe.”
Unable to stand or even sit up, Dwyer was hoisted onto a stretcher. As paramedics prepared to load him into an ambulance, an officer noticed Dwyer’s eyes had glassed over and were fixed.
A half hour later, he was dead.
Returning to the U.S. in June 2003, after 91 days in Iraq, Dwyer seemed a shell to friends.
He wanted to be a medic. (Dwyer’s first real job was as a transporter for a hospital in the golf resort town of Pinehurst, where his parents had moved after retirement.)
In 2002, Dwyer was sent to Fort Bliss, Texas. The jokester immediately fell in with three colleagues — Angela Minor, Sgt. Jose Salazar, and Knapp. They spent so much time together after work that comrades referred to them as “The Four Musketeers.”
When he deployed, he was pudgy at 6-foot-1 and 220 pounds. Now he weighed around 165, and the other Musketeers immediately thought of post-traumatic stress disorder. Dwyer attributed his skeletal appearance to long days and a diet of MREs (Meals Ready to Eat). He showed signs of his jolly old self, so his friends accepted his explanation. But they soon noticed changes that were more than cosmetic.
When people would teasingly call him “war hero” and ask him to tell about his experiences, or about the famous photo, he would steer the conversation toward the others he’d served with. But Dwyer once confided that another image, also involving a child, disturbed him.
He was standing next to a soldier during a firefight when a boy rode up on a bicycle and stopped beside a weapon lying in the dirt. Under his breath, the soldier beside Dwyer whispered, “Don’t pick it up, kid. Don’t pick it up.”
The boy reached for the weapon and was blasted off his bike.
In a telephone interview later … from what he called the “nut hut” at Beaumont, Dwyer told Newsday that he’d lied on a post-deployment questionnaire that asked whether he’d been disturbed by what he’d seen and done in Iraq. The reason: A PTSD diagnosis could interfere with his plans to seek a police job. Besides, he’d been conditioned to see it as a sign of weakness.
“I’m a soldier,” he said. “I suck it up. That’s our job.”
Dwyer told the newspaper that he’d blown off counseling before but was committed to embracing his treatment this time. He said he hoped to become an envoy to others who avoided treatment for fear of damaging their careers.
“There’s a lot of soldiers suffering in silence,” he said.
“And so it’s a dance between the clinicians and the patient.”
Paul Rieckhoff, executive director of Iraq and Afghanistan Veterans of America, feels the VA is a lousy dance partner.
Rieckhoff said the VA’s is a “passive system” whose arcane rules and regulations make it hard for veterans to find help. And when they do get help, he said, it is often inadequate.
“I consider (Dwyer) a battlefield casualty,” he said, “because he was still fighting the war in his head.”
In 2005, Daily Koss Blog referenced Dwyer’s photo in an article about PTSD on MyLeftWing
Returning Vet PTSD – One Soldier’s Story
by ilona Fri Nov 18, 2005 at 03:29:10 PM PDT [Front-paged at My Left Wing]
This photo was taken on March 25, 2003. Snapped by AP and published in newspapers and magazines world-wide a week following the invasion, Army medic Pfc. Joseph Dwyer carries an injured Iraqi boy to safety. Caught in the crossfire in a fierce battle near the village of Al Faysaliyah, the lines of hero and victim appear to be well-defined, not blurred.
On October 7, 2005, Dwyer was arrested after a 3 hour standoff with police in which he discharged ‘volley after volley’ of gunfire in his apartment.
And, so Joseph Dwyer’s story unfolds from the date of impact, 2003, to the date of conclusion, 2008. Five years of suffering and delusion about the “manly” thing to do, has ended in the sad news about his suicide. The part of the story seldom, if ever, followed up on is how the family he left behind, will unfold. There should be someone following their progress and recovery, especially his children.
The children asked what was wrong.
“Joseph is dead,” she told them.
“You said he wasn’t sick any more,” Justin said.
“I know, Justin,” his mother replied. “But I guess maybe the help wasn’t working like we thought it was.”
The kids were too young to understand acronyms like PTSD or to hear a lecture about how Knapp thought the system had failed Dwyer. So she told them that, just as they sometimes have nightmares, “sometimes people get those nightmares in their head and they just can’t get them out, no matter what.”
Despite the efforts she made to get help for Dwyer, Knapp is trying to cope with a deep-seated guilt. She knows that Dwyer shielded her from the images that had haunted him.
Since Dwyer’s death, Justin, now 9, has taken to carrying a newspaper clipping of the Zinn photo around with him. Occasionally, Knapp will catch him huddled with a playmate, showing the photo and telling him about the soldier who used to come to his school and assemble his toys.
Justin wants them to know all about Spc. Joseph Dwyer. His hero.
Joseph Dwyer Obituary [here] – Obituary responses [here], [here], [here], [here], [here
Joseph is not the first, nor last, example of the ‘time bomb’ effect that PTSD has. Past posts on TrurhHugger and BlueBloggin have illustrated the consequences and ultimate social and economic impact this nation should be preparing for. Veterans from past wars have had PTSD symptoms, but were accepted as “he never was the same when he came back”, then they are just written off. Today’s US veteran was plucked from a consumer society whose deepest thoughts concerned sports, celebrities, cars and electronic toys. They started out soft. They were plunged into a physical nightmare where the infrastructure they took for granted was destroyed. The social norm they are accustomed to is turned upside down. The results of firing their weapons no longer resembles video games. Bodies no longer evaporate into a haze of pixels. They hear, see, smell and taste the results of their actions and the actions of their opponents. This sensory assault upon an American Soldier defies representation by recruiters, news media or politicians. These sensory memories become their ghosts. Whether or not a soldier has religious foundation, there is a moral dilemma, even for atheists.
The American moral starting point for armed conflict is so disconnected from reality. Not only physical damage, but mental damage should be expected, especially when the same soldier attempts to incorporate back into the world they left.
The only renewable resource this administration has taken advantage of is HUMAN. Citizen or not, volunteer or not, literate or not, America will accept you into its ranks of cannon fodder. If you survive, you will be patted on the back, given some bandages and salve (maybe an artificial limb) and expected to go along your way. This is WRONG! The inequities of war shine a harsh light on class disparity … if this angers and motivates the under class to rebel, it has happened before.
This treatment inspired the impetus for socialism, and it’s more violent offspring, communism … maybe in America we can vote for sounder leadership, maybe not.
War makes a lot of money for someone, so there will always be wars. The consequences are different now, because more people survive, and they survive differently. They are damaged in a way that impacts every one of us. These changed people cause medical debates, law enforcement debates, insurance, employment and individual households, both economically and emotionally. The returning soldier is getting a different kind of attention, because of the myopic condition in American culture. The social and economic dynamic for the families these soldiers return to is already stressed. So, is there any accountability to be applied? Does the Government and it’s corporate sponsors have any culpability? Why should you care, unless of course, you are a returning soldier with an injury, need a job, need to figure out how to relate to your family and friends.
Both of these men need a new job.
The Texas Progressive Alliance reminds everyone that early voting has begun as it brings you this week’s blog roundup.
Off the Kuff finished his interview tour of Texas with a conversation with Domingo Garcia in CD33.
BossKitty at TruthHugger will not weigh in, whether or not the truth was actually served in court, when a black lady fired a warning shot into a wall. Firing a gun in irresponsible ways is natural in Texas. But, Florida has contradictory laws that allow courts to pick and choose who gets punished for similar irresponsible behavior. You can decide for yourself how good a job of it they do.
Texas Gov. Rick Perry came to Williamson County this week, he endorsed John Bradley for DA. WCNews at Eye On Williamson has the rest of the story, Birds of a feather.
It was a good week to be gay if you were Barack Obama and John Carona, and a bad week to be gay if you were Mitt Romney and Dan Patrick. And if you think that’s confusing, wait until you read what PDiddie at Brains and Eggs said about Greg Abbott’s rose petals and Joe Arpaio’s pink panties.
Lewisville Texan Journal looks at Republican candidate for HD 106, Pat Fallon’s residence, and addresses whether he committed voter fraud by voting from an address where he apparently did not live.
At TexasKaos, lightseeker asks Could the Education Cuts be the beginning of the End for Texas Republican? Check out the details.
Neil at Texas Liberal endorsed Sean Hubbard in the Democratic primary for the open U.S. Senate seat.
The Week of May 14 in Texas History:
On this date in 1836, ad interim president David G. Burnet and Gen. Antonio Lopez de Santa Anna signed the Treaties of Velasco, following the Texans’ victory at San Jacinto during the Texas Revolution.
Two treaties were signed — a public treaty providing for the end of the war, exchanging of prisoners and the safety of Santa Anna; and a secret treaty wherein Santa Anna promised to try to deliver on the conditions of the public treaty.
Both the Texas and the Mexican government, however, violated the treaties and their conflict continued. Mexico did not recognize Texas’ independence, and the Texas boundary was not established until the Treaty of Guadalupe Hidalgo was signed in February 1848, ending the Mexican War.
On this day in 1854, Texas Germans gathered to discuss the national crisis over slavery. At the the annual Staats-Saengerfest (State Singers’ Festival), held on May 14 and 15, delegates from various local political clubs of German citizens in western Texas met in San Antonio and, following the lead of the Freier Mann Verein (Freeman’s Association) organized by fellow Germans in the Northern states, adopted a mildly worded plank declaring that slavery was an evil and that abolition was the business of the states. The resolution went on to maintain that a state should be able to obtain help from the federal government to effect abolition. By “help” the convention meant that the state would ask the federal government to pay the owners for freed slaves. The declaration, along with more strongly worded antislavery newspaper articles in the German language press, led many Anglo-Texans to question the loyalty of their German neighbors on the slavery question, and eventually helped fuel mistrust when Texas joined the Confederacy in 1861.
On this day in 1888 began a week-long celebration dedicating the present Capitol building of Texas. Unfortunately, the Capitol Board refused to accept the structure because its copper roof leaked and because of several other minor problems. After builder Gustav Wilke repaired the roof and made other corrections, the board accepted the building on December 6 of that year.
The Texas Progressive Alliance thinks Mrs. Sarkozy would have been the better candidate than her husband as it brings you this week’s roundup.
Three more Congressional candidate interviews from Off the Kuff: State Rep. Joaquin Castro, the heir apparent in CD20; Bexar County Tax Assessor Sylvia Romo in CD35; and former Bastrop County Judge Ronnie McDonald in CD27.
BossKitty at TruthHugger is overwhelmed by the disgusting realization that everyone’s future will be determined by America UNDER THE INFLUENCE!
BlueBloggin sees Zombies everywhere. Zombies are disengaging Common Sense and promoting the Great Unlearning of America at the bidding of the Koch Brothers. Zombie Politics Desecrates Science Education and Economy.
Texas GOP House Speaker Joe Straus and anti-abortion groups make nice. WCNews at Eye On Williamson has the skinny, The political calculus is changing in Texas.
CouldBeTrue of South Texas Chisme hopes the Valley recognizes Filemon Vela for the opportunistic a**hole he truly is.
The Libertarians selected former New Mexico Gov. Gary Johnson as their presidential nominee at their national convention in Las Vegas this past weekend, and then pushed all their chips in on the pivotal issue of 2012: weed. PDiddie at Brains and Eggs doesn’t think it’s a smokescreen.
Lightseeker explains, over at TexasKaos, how Texas has a shoot first law – Even the Sponsor Didn’t Know It. Give it a read.
The Week of May 7 – 12 in Texas History:
Mission San Francisco de la Espada – The first mission established within the boundaries of Spanish Texas was San Francisco de la Espada. In 1689, Spanish authorities found the remnants of a French settlement, Fort Saint Louis. During their expedition, the Spanish met representatives of the Caddo people, who lived between the Trinity and the Red Rivers. The Caddo expressed interest in learning about Christianity, and the following year Alonso De Leó led an expedition to establish a mission in East Texas. It was completed near the Hasinai village of Nabedaches in late May, and its first mass was conducted on June 1, 1690.
In its first two years of existence, the mission faced much hardship, as floodwaters and then drought destroyed their crops. After an epidemic killed half of the local population, the Hasinai became convinced that the missionaries had caused the deaths. Fearing an attack, on October 25, 1693 the missionaries buried the mission bell, set the building ablaze, and retreated to Mexico.
The mission was reestablished on July 3, 1716, as Nuestro Padre San Francisco de los Tejas. In 1721, it was renamed Mission San Francisco de los Neches. It was moved in 1731 to San Antonio where it was named Mission San Francisco de la Espada. The surviving structure is now part of San Antonio Missions National Historical Park operated by the National Park Service. A commemorative representation of Mission San Francisco de los Tejas, is located in Weches at Mission Tejas State Park.
May 07, 1844
On this day in 1844, the Scioto Belle, a river steamer believed to have been built on the Scioto River in Ohio, arrived at Galveston from New Orleans. The vessel was described in the Telegraph and Texas Register as a substantial, well-built ship, nearly new, well adapted for carrying freight, and with excellent accommodations for passengers. The steamer operated between Galveston and Houston and landings on the Trinity River but, probably because of the poor condition of the Trinity channel in the 1840s, was not able to go much farther up the river than Liberty Landing. In 1844, during a yellow fever epidemic, the Scioto Belle was docked at Lynchburg and converted by Dr. John Henry Bowers into a hospital.
May 07, 1861
On this day in 1861, Anna Pennybacker, clubwoman, woman suffrage advocate, author, and lecturer, was born in Petersburg, Virginia. She graduated from the first class of Sam Houston Normal School in Huntsville, Texas, continued her education in Europe, and subsequently taught grammar and high school for fourteen years. In 1884 she married native Texan Percy V. Pennybacker. Mrs. Pennybacker wrote and published A New History of Texas in 1888, and the textbook was a staple of Texas classrooms for forty years. She founded one of the first women’s clubs in Texas, the Tyler Woman’s Club, in 1894. She went on to serve as president of the Texas Federation of Women’s Clubs from 1901 to 1903, a position in which she raised $3,500 for women’s scholarships at the University of Texas and helped persuade the legislature to fund a women’s dormitory there. After holding important offices in the General Federation of Women’s Clubs, Mrs. Pennybacker was an associate member of the Democratic National Committee (1919-20) and through her work with the Democrats met Eleanor Roosevelt in 1924. Their fourteen-year friendship was based on mutual interests in the advancement of women, world peace, and the Democratic party. Anna Pennybacker died in Austin in 1938.
Civil War in Texas
The so-called battle of Adams Hill occurred on May 9, 1861, between federal forces under Lt. Col. Isaac Van Duzer Reeve and Texas Confederate troops under Col. Earl Van Dorn. The confrontation took place on the military road between San Antonio and El Paso, about fifteen miles west of downtown San Antonio. Under the terms of the surrender of the Department of Texas, Reeve proceeded from Fort Bliss to the Texas coast to join other federal troops in the evacuation of Texas. His force consisted of companies B, E, F, H, I, and K and a detachment of Company G, Eighth United States Infantry, which represented the garrisons of Fort Bliss, Fort Quitman, and Fort Davis. Reeve reported the total strength of his command at 320 men, including two hospital stewards, twelve musicians, and ten officers. Col. James V. Bomford of the Sixth United States Infantry also accompanied the column.
Upon arriving at Fort Clark, Reeve became aware of the Confederate internment of paroled federal troops in Texas and of concern by Confederate officials in San Antonio that Reeve’s force was, in fact, hostile. He nevertheless resolved to continue his march to the coast to evacuate his command in compliance with former Department of Texas commander David Twiggs‘s terms of surrender. On May 8 Reeve camped his command on the east side of the Medina River opposite Castroville. At midnight, having received further word of Van Dorn’s advance from San Antonio with the purpose of confronting the column, Reeve resolved again to push forward to San Antonio.
Upon the advice of Lt. Zenas Randall Bliss, Reeve halted his column on a high hill a few hundred yards from San Lucas Springs. There was a small collection of buildings and corrals, which Reeve supplemented with his wagons for defense purposes. At around nine that morning, two officers representing Colonel Van Dorn arrived under a white flag with the Confederates’ demand that Reeve surrender unconditionally. With no actual hostile force in sight and his position a strong one, Reeve declined.
Van Dorn, on the march, soon arrived in full force. His command, which consisted of six companies of Col. Henry E. McCulloch‘s cavalry regiment, a squadron of Col. John S. Ford‘s State Troops (under the command of Lt. Col. John Robert Baylor,) Capt. William Edgar’s battery of light artillery, and a battalion of infantry under Lt. Col. James Duff, comprised nearly 1,370 men and six pieces of artillery. Van Dorn’s representative now offered Reeve an opportunity to inspect the Confederate force. Lieutenant Bliss was sent forward and examined it, then quickly reported the strength of the force to Reeve. Inasmuch as the federals’ effective strength had been reduced to 270 by sickness, desertion, and stragglers, Reeve resolved that resistance would be futile and surrendered his command to Van Dorn. The Confederates, satisfied with this turn of events, retired, allowing Reeve to continue his march, under arms, at his own leisure. The federals arrived at San Antonio on May 10, and the next day a Confederate officer was sent to recover all arms and public property.
Period accounts of the confrontation refer to the event as having taken place at San Lucas Springs. Later accounts say Adams Hill. There were no shots fired; it appears that both sides were eager to avoid bloodshed.
Preparations for the very last battle of the Civil War At Palmito Ranch begins:
The Confederates in Texas were aware of the fate of the Confederacy’s eastern armies. On May 1, 1865, a passenger on a steamer heading up the Rio Grande towards Brownsville tossed a copy of the New Orleans Times to some Confederates at Palmito Ranch. The paper contained the news of Lee’s surrender, Lincoln’s death, and the surrender negotiations between Johnston and Sherman. Within the next ten days several hundred rebels left the army and went home. Those who remained were as resolute as their commanders to continue the fight in Texas. The federals, meanwhile, had received an erroneous report that the southerners were preparing to evacuate Brownsville and move east of Corpus Christi. In light of this intelligence Colonel Barrett ordered 250 men of the Sixty-second United States Colored Infantry and fifty men of the Second Texas United States Cavalry (dismounted) to cross to the mainland from Brazos Island at Boca Chica Pass to occupy Brownsville. Carrying five days’ rations and 100 rounds of ammunition per man, the Union troops crossed over to the coast at 9:30 P.M. on May 11, 1865. Under the command of Lt. Col. David Branson, this detachment marched all night and reached White’s Ranch at daybreak. There Branson’s men halted and tried to conceal themselves in a thicket along the Rio Grande. The camp was spotted by “civilians” (probably Confederate soldiers) on the Mexican side of the river. Realizing that any hope of surprising the Confederates was lost, Branson immediately resumed his march toward Brownsville.
Russian Roulette on a global scale, Zombie US Lawmakers gamble with the intellectual destruction of a whole country. If you can justify what you see with your own eyes with the fantasies these extremists are selling you, then you have become a Zombie Voter. Desecration of intellectual growth is suicide.
Removing science from the toolbox of education is the destruction of a whole culture. Tearing down the fabric of education in America is contrary to the original Founding Father’s vision. America was created out of necessity. The colonists spirit needed to grow and discover it’s limits. Education was integral to this.
America’s invasion by Europe was opportunistic, based on greed for marketable resources. This was a survival move for a crumbling Europe. Refugees from political and religious persecution along with Europeans sent to pay off their debts to a monarch, were sent to establish a foothold on the continent. The resulting country was a golden opportunity to profit and expand the power of monarchs. What resulted was the colonists a desire for independence from oppressive, controlling elitists and launch an experiment where progressive ideas were no longer suppressed. The European elite felt threatened by progressive, inclusive political thought. The Revolutionary War bought the freedom for the colonists to use their brains for their own advancement, for a change.
Unfortunately, what has evolved in America, is corporate disdain for any science questioning their methods of conduct. Corporations use science to create new and wonderful consumer products for profit. Science has also brought questions addressing the safety and long term consequences for many consumer products. Each and every product is entrenched in the corporate formula for profit. Corporations will not tolerate questions until the volume of consequences is too big to deny. How many court settlements have been made to victims with the restriction of non-disclosure. Corporations can pay huge sums of money to protect their profit margin. Corporations can also pay politicians to withdraw or reduce funding to science projects, especially those that may hold them accountable for their misdeeds. Yes, corporations, in general, are full of misdeeds. There are some exceptions, but the general rule is profit over accountability, so let’s buy a legislator to help us profit. We are experiencing the symptoms of this philosophy right now.
Strategic Budgeting for Faculty & Staff, of college science programs, have been devastated by unprecedented budget deficits within state and federal levels of government…
The recent spam advertising by the Heartland Institute about Global Warming, the extreme right wing (Koch brothers funded campaign to undermine science and deny evidence for climate change), wants us to dump the same science that will save our future asses, if we use it right. Market-based, rather than Government-based science, will not address real earth issues, it will only ensure some elite group will profit while the rest of us perish. This often politically referenced “Institute” is but a tool by Koch Brothers, Tea Party Extremists, to pander to the under educated voter. If we elect these Koch Brothers anti-science ‘Zombies’ to Congress, the United States of America is truly doomed.
The Heartland Institute Self Destructs
Zombie Congress – If Rep. Jim Cooper is right, fiscal negotiations are in danger. Big danger.
Not only will the Zombie Congress devastate the system that funds the US Government and education system, it will screw the American taxpayer by failing to address the consequences of allowing the Bush Tax Cuts expire. The Zombies will complete the ruination of America’s science education. All to satisfy the “Anti-Global Warming” contingent, funded by the Koch Brothers. Zombie voters provided by the Koch Brothers Tea Party will turn out in swarms to make sure their uneducated “values” will be elected to Congress.
Zombies Walk The Halls Of Congress – NPR describes a different kind of Zombies populating Congress …
What will new ‘climate zombie’ Congress be like? Ask Utah – Nobody knows for sure what things will be like, or how bad they will get, once the type of people who are comfortable rejecting the conclusions of the top 80 scientific bodies of the world take power.
Rapid Decline in US Earth Observation Capabilities – ScienceDaily (May 2, 2012) — A new National Research Council report says that budget shortfalls, cost-estimate growth, launch failures, and changes in mission design and scope have left U.S. earth observation systems in a more precarious position than they were five years ago. The report cautions that the nation’s earth observing system is beginning a rapid decline in capability, as long-running missions end and key new missions are delayed, lost, or cancelled.
Earth observation capabilities in ‘precarious position’ as budgets decline, says study
Scientists sue Arizona for $18 million – PHOENIX, May 22 (UPI) — A group of scientists in Arizona say they’re suing the state for $18 million in research money cut by the Legislature to cover a budget shortfall.
Hawaii ending universal child health care – … . Gov. Linda Lingle’s administration cited budget shortfalls and other available health care options for eliminating funding for the program
Texas Education Chief Steps Down – Scott launched the Texas Science, Technology, Engineering and Math … He also had to downsize the agency twice, after critical state budget shortfalls.
The “The Funeral for the Death of Education” was presented on international workers day, May Day, following the Board of Trustees’ decision to lay off of 55 support staff and reduce hours and pay of 96 others.
Lynn Shaw, a professor of electrical technology and president of the full-time faculty union, said, “We decided to do the funeral for education because the students were suffering and faculty feel that students are natural allies so we came up with an idea to draw attention to this that would be dramatic and make a statement.”
Corporate and political denial of long term consequences is in our face right now. If you missed the past hundred years of examples, you cannot ignore this most recent ‘Mother Nature vs Human Arrogance’ event. Corporate Humans do not want to think about anything that would interfere with their profit motive, but Fukashima should be the eye opener. Recent news shows this lesson is being forgotten already. The risk of another massive disaster, without preparation, will happen in the USA.
It’s Not Just Fukushima: Mass Disaster Evacuations Challenge Planners – … in the U.S., more than four million Americans live within 10 miles of the 63 sites of nuclear power plants with at least one operating reactor, according to data compiled by the NRC based on the 2000 census. That number swells when the radius extends outward to 50 miles to affect more than 180 million Americans, and includes major metropolitan areas such as , Philadelphia, San Diego and even West Palm Beach, Fla.
In the wake of the and subsequent evacuations, could all these people in the U.S. be evacuated–or take some form of protective action–in time in similar circumstances?
Incomplete science guarantees an uncertain future for humans on this planet. Mother Nature has erased her errors many times before, but this crop of biological occupants of her planet has taken a lot for granted … Mother Nature will pay humans back for their arrogant desecration.
The Texas Progressive Alliance is slow jamming this week’s roundup.
CouldBeTrue of South Texas Chisme sees Republicans holding on to private power at the expense of children.
More Congressional candidate interviews from Off the Kuff, who has conversations with Marc Veasey, Ramiro Garza, and Anthony Troiani.
BossKitty at TruthHugger takes a vacation from the sanitized, filtered, hollywood marketing of political candidates and looks at the world. The dramatic trial in Norway, for a mass murderer, has unified civilized Europeans who sang … To Annoy The Monster.
The myth of the disgruntled Texas Republican. WCNews at Eye On Williamson says they’re like a GOP Chupacabra, we always hear about one, but never actually see one. Deeply unhappy Republicans? Don’t be so sure.
Greg Abbott and Susan Combs have both, in the past year, made the serious mistake of exposing millions of Texans to identity fraud by failing to safeguard their social security numbers. Both seek a promotion to higher office in 2014. Is there ANY amount of incompetence and malfeasance a Texas Republican can be guilty of and NOT get elected? PDiddie at Brains and Eggs doesn’t have confidence that the answer is ‘yes’.
BlueBloggin wants Americans to understand there is always more to sensational stories in the headlines. UpDated: What is Adrenarche and Why Are America’s Services Sexually Immature.
Libby Shaw nails it again over at TexasKaos. She explains why she is hoping 2012 is a “buyer’s revenge” election, a judgement on the kiss-ups, brain dead zombies and other assorted creatures that got elected in 2010. See it here: Gov. Oops Grovels for Norquist While Houston Business Leader Kowtows to Perry
Neil at Texas Liberal wrote about Dick Clark and Johnny Rotten.
The Week of April 30 through May 5 in Texas History
April 30 – A ceremony of thanksgiving is held near present-day El Paso by Juan de Oñate, the members of his expedition and natives of the region. The Spaniards provide game and the Indians supply fish for a feast, Franciscan missionaries celebrate mass, and Oñate claims all land drained by the Rio Grande in the name of the King Philip II of Spain.
Bosque-Larios Expedition sets out for Texas April 30, 1675
On this day in 1675, an expedition led by Fernando del Bosque and Fray Juan Larios left Nuestra Señora de Guadalupe mission in present-day Monclova, Mexico, to convert the Indians of Coahuila. On May 11 the expedition reached the Rio Grande, probably a little below the present site of Eagle Pass. Bosque took formal possession of the river, erected a wooden cross, and renamed the river the San Buenaventura del Norte. On May 15 members of the expedition celebrated what may have been the first Mass on Texas soil, in present-day Maverick County. In all, the Spaniards traveled forty leagues past the Rio Grande and made six halts in south-central Texas. They returned to Guadalupe on June 12.
On this day in 1768, Gaspar José de Solís wrote in his diary of a striking encounter with a Tejas Indian woman in what is now Houston County. Fray Solís was inspecting missions for the College of Nuestra Señora de Guadalupe de Zacatecas. His diary presents a valuable contemporary account of the missions, country, and Indians of Texas. The woman, Santa Adiva, held high status in her village. There, Solís writes, the inhabitants were nearly naked, “much painted with vermillion and other colors,” and wearing beads and feathers. Solís states that the Indians were “great thieves and drunkards because whiskey and wine are furnished to them by the French.” Santa Adiva, whose name was said to mean “great lady” or “principal lady” and who was accorded queen-like status, lived in a large, multi-room house, to which other Indians brought gifts. Solís reports that she had five husbands and many servants.
On this day in 1986, the city of Houston proclaimed Albert Moses Levy Memorial Day, in honor of Jews who participated in the fight for Texas independence. Levy was born in 1800, probably in Amsterdam. His family immigrated to Virginia in 1818, and he completed medical school at the University of Pennsylvania in 1832. After the death of his first wife in 1835, he went to New Orleans, where he joined the New Orleans Greys and left for Texas. He was quickly appointed surgeon in chief of the volunteer army of Texas and was wounded at the siege of Bexar. In 1836, after leaving the army, Levy joined the Texas Navy. In 1837 his ship, the Independence, was captured by two Mexican brigs-of-war. After three months he escaped and walked back to Texas, where he set up medical practice in Matagorda. Levy committed suicide in May 1848.
Mission, precursor of the Alamo, founded at San Antonio May 01, 1718
On this day in 1718, San Antonio de Valero Mission was founded by Franciscan father Antonio de San Buenaventura y Olivares at the site of present-day San Antonio. Four days later the nearby San Antonio de Béxar Presidio and the civil settlement, Villa de Béxar, were established. The mission, originally located west of San Pedro Springs, survived three moves and numerous setbacks during its early years. After a hurricane destroyed most of the existing buildings in 1724, the mission reached its latest site on the east bank of the San Antonio River. After the mission was secularized in 1793 it became the Alamo. Due to its rudimentary fortifications, the abandoned mission became an objective of military importance in the conflicts of the nineteenth century, and it changed hands at least sixteen times. Portions of the mission’s structures have survived as part of the Alamo Battlefield Shrine.
First heart transplanted in Houston May 03, 1968
On this day in 1968, surgeon Denton Cooley and his associates at Houston’s St. Luke’s Hospital performed the first heart transplant in the United States. The patient, Everett Thomas, lived for 204 days with the heart donated from a fifteen-year-old girl. Texas physicians and scientists made numerous contributions to the field of human heart transplantation as it evolved from preliminary experimentation to an accepted orthodox therapy for patients with end-stage cardiac disease. Two Houston surgeons, Cooley and Michael E. DeBakey, have been in the forefront in developing heart surgery and heart transplantation; their rivalry was the subject of a book by journalist Tommy Thompson. According to the United Network for Organ Sharing, a total of 26,704 heart transplantations had been reported worldwide by the mid-1990s, and 1,804 of these were performed in Texas. Worldwide, just over 3,000 heart transplants are performed each year. In 1994, 167 of these were in Texas.
Texas Radical Republican involved in Haymarket Massacre May 04, 1886
On this day in 1886, Albert Richard Parsons, a labor organizer from Texas, was implicated in the infamous Chicago Haymarket Massacre. The brother of Confederate colonel William Henry Parsons, Albert served in Parsons’s Brigade, a unit of Texas cavalry commanded by his brother, during the Civil War. After the war he became a Radical Republican and traveled throughout Central Texas registering freed slaves to vote. When Reconstruction came to an end in Texas, Parsons was hated and persecuted as a miscegenationist and a scalawag. He moved to Chicago with his wife, Lucy E. Parsons, a woman of mixed racial heritage, and became a leading agitator for social change there. On the evening of May 4, 1886, Parsons spoke at a meeting in Haymarket Square to protest police brutality. He and his family were in nearby Zepf’s Hall when nearly 200 policemen marched into the square; an unknown person threw a bomb, and police began shooting wildly. Most of the seven police officers and seven members of the crowd who died apparently sustained wounds from police revolvers. Albert Parsons and seven others were tried for conspiracy to murder; he was among the four men who were eventually hanged for the crime. Six years later, Illinois governor John Peter Altgeld pardoned the three defendants who remained in prison and condemned the convictions as a miscarriage of justice.
Victory over French marks origin of Cinco de Mayo celebration May 05, 1862
On this day in 1862, Mexican general Ignacio Zaragoza defeated French expeditionary forces at Puebla, Mexico. This event is celebrated annually as El Cinco de Mayo. Along with El Diez y Seis de Septiembre (September 16), on which is commemorated Father Miguel Hidalgo y Costilla’s 1810 call for the end of Spanish rule in Mexico, El Cinco de Mayo is one of the Fiestas Patrias, annual celebrations of Mexican national holidays and of the ethnic heritage of Mexican-Americans.
Texas native Zaragoza repels French army on Cinco De Mayo Zaragoza was born on March 24, 1829, at Bahía del Espíritu Santo in the state of Coahuila and Texas, near present Goliad, Texas. With Mexico’s defeat in the Texas Revolution, his father moved the family from Goliad to Matamoros. Zaragoza eventually entered the Mexican army and served in many campaigns. When the French invaded Mexico in 1862 he was entrusted with the defense of Puebla. French forces attacked the town in a battle that lasted the entire day of May 5, 1862, the now-famed Cinco de Mayo. Zaragoza’s well-armed, well-trained men forced the withdrawal of the French troops. The number of French reported killed ranged from 476 to 1,000. Mexican losses were reported to be approximately eighty-six. Although the French captured Mexico City the next summer, the costly delay at Puebla is believed to have shortened the French intervention in Mexico and changed its outcome. Zaragoza became a national hero, but died from typhoid fever the following September. Cinco de Mayo, a Mexican national holiday, is celebrated in Texas and the Southwest as well.
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