Thursday, December 18, 2008

Too late? Scientists say we should expect the worst

"As an academic I wanted to be told that it was a very good piece of work and that the conclusions were sound," Anderson said. "But as a human being I desperately wanted someone to point out a mistake, and to tell me we had got it completely wrong."

Nobody did. The cream of the UK climate science community sat in stunned silence as Anderson pointed out that carbon emissions since 2000 have risen much faster than anyone thought possible, driven mainly by the coal-fuelled economic boom in the developing world. So much extra pollution is being pumped out, he said, that most of the climate targets debated by politicians and campaigners are fanciful at best, and "dangerously misguided" at worst.

In the jargon used to count the steady accumulation of carbon dioxide in the Earth's thin layer of atmosphere, he said it was "improbable" that levels could now be restricted to 650 parts per million (ppm).

[ Just look at the kind of characters our nations have elected as leaders. What is the chance of them making tough decisions and averting this prospective disaster? They don't seem to have any real will to do that now and now is the critical time for action. But then the current world financial crisis that threatens to cause a serious depression with reduced economic activity and possibly even mass starvation and war is one thing that could help. It could turn out to have been very convenient. ]

Chinese reporter chasing corruption claims disappears

A Chinese newspaper reporter investigating a suspicious real estate deal who has not been seen since five men pushed him into a car two weeks ago has been accused of bribery, in the second such case this month.

Guan's disappearance highlights the danger to reporters probing corruption in a country where officials are often close to business while also wielding power over police and courts.

Killings of reporters are virtually unheard of, but beatings, detentions and arrests are a risk for those who take on the powerful.

[ This sort of thing scandalizes typical northern Europeans because corruption is most alien the further you go towards Scandinavia. Is it something in the air? Is it just luck that Scandinavian culture just happens to be like that? No, it is biological. But now even these northern countries are increasingly ruled by corrupt politicians and "officials are often close to business while also wielding power over police and courts". They get away with as much as they can, and as the population becomes changed ethnically and loses its traditional chararacter, the corruption will spread. ]


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