Dave Stancliff 2011-06-26 blogarama.com

Saturday, July 2, 2011

Get naked! American nudists celebrate summer au naturel

Image: World Record Skinny Dip

As Americans across the country take off for the holiday weekend, a select group will be going even farther.

They’ll be taking it all off.

National Nude Recreation Week kicks off with a metaphorical bang July 4, and nudists are inviting all of America to doff the duds, slap on the SPF 30 and join them for a skinny dip, a hike au naturel or an outdoor frolic in their birthday suits.

“We’d like everyone to know how much better off we’d all be if everyone knew the physical, spiritual and emotional benefits of nudism,” says Dr. Gerry Goodenough, a Corona, Calif., nudist. “The constricting emotional doors all drop away, and pretty soon we’re all playing like little kids again.”

Well, like naked little kids again.

“If people would only try it once, I think they’ll see the joys of being naked outdoors,” says Carolyn Hawkins, spokesperson for the American Association for Nude Recreation in Kissimmee, Fla. “During Nude Recreation Week, most clubs open the doors for free and let people come in and see how much wholesome fun nude recreation can be.”

(Surprising nude fact no. 1: Famous American nudists and skinny dippers include George Washington, Benjamin Franklin and John F. Kennedy.)

Nude recreation is doing what you’d expect of a pastime enjoyed by people without clothes: It is coming in from out of the cold.

The year-round calendar is filling up. National Nude Gardening Day was May 14; The World Naked Bike Ride (motto: “Bare as you Dare”) was June 11; and the ever-popular Nudestock will be celebrated at various clubs Aug. 27.

And hundreds of thousands of Americans will make plans to visit one of the 260 AANR approved nudists resorts and clubs across North America. They may be short on pockets, but they’re long on cash. The AANR estimates naked Americans will spend $440 million on so-called “nakations” this year.

(Surprising fact no. 2: Travel experts say nudists tend to pack just as much to go on a nakation as clothed tourists).

Typical club recreations include — insert adjective “naked” prior to each activity — yoga, golf, billiards, charity fitness runs, needlepoint, line dancing, water volleyball and even car shows.

“Every recreational activity you enjoy doing with clothes on you can enjoy even more doing without clothes on,” says Goodenough, 68, a retired physician and one of 400 year-round residents at California’s Glen Eden Nudist Resort, which has 1,600 members.

“The biggest misconception is that today’s nudists are a bunch of swingers and party people,” Hawkins says. “But any group affiliated with the AANR must maintain family standards.”

Nudists for years were stigmatized as sunburned oddballs who dwelt in rustic “colonies” down old dirt roads. Today, many people recognize nudists as just regular folks without all the pesky tan lines.

That the image is changing is due in large part to work done by nude entrepreneurs like Tom and Nancy Tiemann, owners of the Austin-based nude travel agency Bare Necessities Tour & Travel.

Back in 1988, the two were self-described “backyard nudists” when they accidentally strolled onto a nude beach in the West Indies. What they say they saw opened their eyes — in ways that had nothing to do with a good, long gawk.

“We saw these weren’t trashy people,” Nancy says. “They weren’t deviants. They were genuinely nice people from a broad socio-economic background. What they wanted were more upscale options.”

The Tiemanns decided to roll the dice and see if they could find a cruise line that would agree to book a nudes-only cruise ship. Tiemann says jaws dropped when she told prospective bookers that trousers most definitely would.

“Really, the biggest difficulty was getting someone to not hang up. They all thought it was a prank.”

What started as a quixotic quest to fill a rickety 36-passenger dive boat with naked men and women in 1991 has grown into a thriving niche industry that is taking reservations for a February 2013 cruise extravaganza that will include a cargo of sunscreen ample enough to protect an expected 3,000 nudists, none of whom are aspiring to any “best dressed” cruise awards.

“It’s a nine-day cruise from Fort Lauderdale through the Panama Canal and we’re calling it The Big Nude Boat,” she says. “It’s exceeded all our expectations. The cruise lines now compete for our business, as do the ports. They know we spend money and they know we wear clothes whenever we’re off the boats or the captain asks us to.”

(Surprising fact no. 3: Nudists at sea have a dress code. In the formal dining room, clothes must be worn for safety reasons. Trays of scalding coffee and flaming basked Alaska don’t mix with exposed skin aboard rolling decks).

It may sound like an oxymoron, but the nudists are uniform in beseeching the understanding of their clothed brothers and sisters who mistakenly believe their pastime involves swinging, swapping or other adventures.

“People need to understand nudism isn’t about getting a really great tan,” Tiemann says. “It’s about accepting ourselves and one another as we are. If nudists share a common thread, it’s about believing in the importance of everyone being comfortable in one’s own skin.”

story source

It’s Saturday and time to examine First World Problems!

Good Morning Humboldt County!

It’s still and cool outside with a promise of sun soon. Grab a chair, stool, or beanbag, and indulge in a cup of hot coffee or tea with me while we look at:

source

Friday, July 1, 2011

Finally Friday: Sunshine Depression and bombs go off in Thailand

Good Morning Humboldt County!

Good to see you. Pull up a chair and have a stare. With summer finally here on the coast we’re actually being bathed in sunshine. Surprisingly, not everyone is going to be happy about that. Here’s why:

SAD in the summer? Sunshine depression rare, but real

Many of us can hardly wait for summer to arrive, but a small number of people are much happier when it's over. You've no doubt heard of Seasonal Affective Disorder, the wintertime mood disorder -- but some get SAD in the summer.

As hot weather approaches, those with summer SAD sleep less, eat less, and lose weight. They're extremely irritable and agitated. (It's the reverse for people with winter SAD, who sleep more, gain weight and crave high-carb foods, and tend to slow down and socially hibernate from late fall to early spring.)

  

As bomb expert inspects, explosion rips car apart in Thailand

As a demolition expert in Vietnam I often wondered what it would be like to have a bomb go off while probing for it with my bayonet. I had nightmares about it. This series of photos gave me the chills.

“Three hidden roadside bombs have killed two people and wounded 13 others in southern Thailand, and police believe Islamist militants are responsible.

Police Col. Nitinai Langyanay said the first bomb in Narathiwat province killed two irrigation workers Friday and wounded five others, while a second one about 1 kilometer (one-half mile) away wounded a soldier.

Bomb removal officers then tried to defuse a third bomb only three meters (yards) away from the second one but it exploded, wounding seven policemen. It is a standard practice of the insurgents to plant a second bomb to go off when security officials arrive to investigate an explosion.”

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Time for me to walk on down the road…

The morning awwwwww….Tickled terrier snorts with glee!

Get those laugh muscles going! Try not to snort while watching…

Thursday, June 30, 2011

Reason # 37, why I no longer fly: Man stung by scorpion on flight

All Jeff Ellis could do was wait as he sat terrified 30,000 feet in the air staring at the wriggling scorpion that stung him on a flight to Alaska.

As Ellis monitored himself for signs of a fatal allergic reaction, emergency responders in Anchorage were told to get ready; the flight would be landing soon.

But they had a problem, Ellis said: Scorpions aren't common in Alaska, and the EMTs didn't know what to do.

"They had to Google it," he said.    Story Here   Image source

What fun! A gallery of false advertising….

  

  

 

MORE ADS HERE

Thursday stuff: caffein keeps Alzheimer’s at bay, the biggest span bridge in the world, and US adopts new war doctrine

Good Morning Humboldt County!

It’s time to grab a cup of Joe and see what’s happening in the world around us. The good news this morning is that your cup of Joe is really good for you!

Coffee buzz protects brain from Alzheimer's

For years we’ve been told that caffeinated coffee was bad for us. It’s unhealthy and addictive, doctors warned. But as vindication for all who stuck by their energizing elixir, a new study shows that guzzling caffeinated coffee may actually be good for our brains. In fact, it may help keep Alzheimer’s at bay.

The study, which was published early online in the Journal of Alzheimer’s Disease, was in mice whose DNA had been tweaked to contain a human Alzheimer’s gene. Just like humans with familial Alzheimer’s, these mice become increasingly forgetful as they age.

 

A marathon span: China opens world's The Jiaozhou Bay bridge in China, the world's longest bridgelongest bridge over water

China opened the world's longest bridge over water on Thursday.

The Jiaozhou Bay bridge is 26.4 miles long, according to Guinness World Records. It links China's eastern port city of Qingdao to Huangdao island.

State-run CCTV said the 110-foot-wide bridge cost more than 10 billion yuan ($1.5 billion). However, the Xinhua news agency put the cost at $2.3 billion and Britain's Telegraph newspaper reported its price tag totaled more than $8.8 billion.

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New plan to defeat al-Qaida: 'Surgical' strikes rather than expensive wars

Image: John Brennan

The day has finally come…the U.S. has wised up about sending troops to other countries!

The United States will push ahead with more targeted drone strikes and special operations raids and fewer costly land battles like Iraq and Afghanistan in the continuing war against al-Qaida, according to a new national counterterrorism strategy unveiled Wednesday.

Two years in the making, the doctrine comes in the wake of the successful special operations raid that killed al-Qaida chief Osama bin Laden in May, and a week after President Barack Obama's announcement that U.S. troops will begin leaving Afghanistan this summer.

Photo- White House counterterrorism adviser John Brennan predicted that strikes targeting al-Qaida would eventually leave the network unable to "replenish their ranks with the skilled leaders that they need to sustain their operations."

Wednesday, June 29, 2011

‘Alone’……..a poem

a_003

From childhood's hour I have not been
As others were — I have not seen
As others saw — I could not bring
My passions from a common spring —
From the same source I have not taken
My sorrow — I could not awaken
My heart to joy at the same tone —
And all I lov'd — I lov'd alone —
Then — in my childhood — in the dawn
Of a most stormy life — was drawn
From ev'ry depth of good and ill
The mystery which binds me still —
From the torrent, or the fountain —
From the red cliff of the mountain —
From the sun that 'round me roll'd
In its autumn tint of gold —
From the lightning in the sky
As it pass'd me flying by —
From the thunder, and the storm —
And the cloud that took the form
(When the rest of Heaven was blue)
Of a demon in my view —
Edgar Allan Poe

Report highlights poor water quality at nation's beaches

Before you wade into the water this summer, you may want to consult the beach water report released Wednesday by the Natural Resources Defense Council.

The report found that the number of closing and health advisory days at America’s ocean, bay and Great Lakes beaches spiked to the second-highest level measured by the NRDC in the past two decades.

Ten beaches with persistently poor water quality are included in the NRDC’s “repeat offender” list. Water samples at these beaches exceeded public health standards more than 25 percent of the time each year between 2006 and 2010:

  • California: Avalon Beach in Los Angeles County (3 of 5 monitored sections)
    Avalon Beach – Near Busy B CafĂ©
    Avalon Beach – North of GP Pier
    Avalon Beach – South of GP Pier
  • California: Cabrillo Beach Station in Los Angeles County
  • California: Doheny State Beach in Orange County (2 of 6 monitored sections)
    Doheny State Beach – North of San Juan Creek
    Doheny State Beach – Surf Zone at Outfall
  • Florida: Keaton Beach in Taylor County
  • bottom photo source

Interactive map: See how 200 popular beaches fared

Swimmers can check the water quality report at their beach on the EPA website. Not all beaches are monitored, and the EPA suggests beachgoers avoid unmonitored spots where the water quality is unknown. The NRDC also has a guide to finding clean beaches on its website.

“Those traveling to beaches from greater distances with beach visitation as their primary purpose may or may not do their research, but those who do will welcome the NRDC and EPA websites," said Michael Blazey, professor of recreation and leisure studies at California State University, Long Beach.

Story source By Harriet Baskas, msnbc.com contributor

Wacky Wednesday: napping at work, painkiller recall, and Russians meeting with aliens in 2031

I was just meditating on your fascinating memo, really

First off, boss, if you are reading this, we NEVER do this.

Secondly, if you are among the more than one-third of the adult U.S. population that gets less than seven hours of sleep a night, you might want to read up.

Lifehacker offers up some tips on how to catch some shuteye at work (and a very pertinent video of George Costanza sleeping under his desk). Among the points covered:

  • Use your private office.
  • Make use of blinds.
  • Wear sunglasses.
  • Use your car.
  • Use the bathroom.
  • What to do if you get caught.
  • Ask for permission.                                         image source
  • --------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------

More Tylenol Extra Strength pills recalled

Johnson & Johnson on Tuesday announced another Tylenol recall due to a musty moldy odor linked to a trace chemical. The company's McNeil Consumer Healthcare unit is recalling one product lot of Tylenol Extra Strength Caplets made in February 2009 and distributed in the U.S. The recall totals 60,912 bottles, each of which has 225 caplets.

The product lot number for the recalled Tylenol Extra Strength product can be found on the side of the bottle label — it is ABA619 300450444271.

Customers should stop using the product from the lot immediately and contact McNeil at www.tylenol.com or by calling 1-888-222-6036 for instructions on receiving a refund or product coupon.

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Russian scientists expect to meet aliens by 2031

Russian scientists expect humanity to encounter alien civilizations within the next two decades, a top Russian astronomer predicted on Monday.

Speaking at an international forum dedicated to the search for extraterrestrial life, Finkelstein said 10 percent of the known planets circling suns in the galaxy resemble Earth.

If water can be found there, then so can life, he said, adding that aliens would most likely resemble humans with two arms, two legs and a head.

See ya soon. It’s time for me to head on down the road…

Tuesday, June 28, 2011

Just in time for the 4th of July! Scientists Growing Test-Tube Burger

Where's the beef?

The answer to that classic question may soon be, "It's growing in a test tube."

Dutch scientists estimate that they are about one year away from developing the world's first "test-tube hamburger" made with ground beef grown from stem cells — and they're looking for someone to try it.

"We are trying prove to the world we can make a product out of this, and we need a courageous person who is willing to be the first to taste it," Mark Post, professor of physiology at Maastricht University, who is spearheading the project, told the Daily Mail. "If no one comes forward then it might be me."

To grow the bionic burger, scientists will extract approximately 10,000 stem cells from the tissue of a healthy cow. These cells will then grow in the lab, multiplying by more than a billion times, eventually producing muscle tissue similar to the sample taken from the original cow. The tissue will then be ground and pressed into hamburger patties.

One of the challenges is to create meat that resembles what today's consumers are accustomed to eating. Post's previous attempts at growing pork yielded a texture that he compared to a squishy scallop, the result of its having less protein content than naturally raised meat.

But if they can accurately reproduce the taste and texture of conventional cuts of meat, Post and his team believe they can get the public on board.

"When we are eating a hamburger we don't think, 'I’m eating a dead cow,'" one of Post's colleagues told the Daily Mail. "And when people are already far from what they eat, it's not too hard to see them accepting cultured meat."

So what do you think? Would you be willing to grill up a test tube burger next July 4th?

story source  by Katie Robbins   image source

Sign of the times:Police turn away summer school registration crowd

Budget cuts in California’s school system have become so severe most schools can’t afford to have summer school. This is only the tip of the iceberg. California politicians could care less about our schools, they’re too busy playing political games.

The turnout to sign up for a free summer session of school caught officials off guard. They should have been prepared for this. Just look at the programs already slashed in the state’s education sector to see where political priorities lie. When we have a generation that can’t read or write it’ll be too late to save our future.

Here’s a sign of the times:

“HAWTHORNE, Calif. (AP) - Police have been forced to turn away a huge, unruly crowd that showed up to register Southern California high school students for 400 free summer school slots.

People began arriving at dawn Monday at Hawthorne's Opportunities for Learning Public Charter Schools.

Police Capt. Keith Kauffman says nearly 100 officers from nine law enforcement agencies were called in Monday morning because the number of students and parents swelled to more than 1,000.

They were peacefully dispersed by about 10:30 a.m.

Many budget-strapped school districts have canceled summer school.

Opportunities for Learning Public Charter area supervisor Jesus Franco tells the Torrance Daily Breeze that he was surprised by the huge turnout. Only about 40 people showed up on last year's opening day of registration.”

photo source

Tuesday ramblings: Mickey and Minnie mouse cartoon controversy and other stuff…

Good Morning Humboldt County!

Have you got you coffee or tea? Let’s enjoy warm beverages this morning while taking a look at the madness in the world around us:

Cartoon of bearded Mickey Mouse with Minnie in a veil causes stir in Egypt

Ultraconservative Muslims don’t have a sense of humor.

An Egyptian Christian telecom mogul has angered Islamic hard-liners by posting an online cartoon of Mickey Mouse with a beard and Minnie in a face veil. The ultraconservative Islamists, known as Salafis, called the cartoon posted by Naguib Sawiris on Twitter a mockery of Islam.

 Image: People wearing masks often used by a group that calls itself "Anonymous" take part in a rally in Madrid'Anonymous' hackers declare war on Orlando

The hacker group Anonymous on Monday declared war against the city of Orlando, Florida, over the arrest of people handing out food to homeless people, according to a report in The Washington Post.

Anonymous said it would start "a massive campaign" against Orlando and "city web assets."

It said it would send emails to millions of people in 50 countries asking them to boycott the city.

Image: Bart de Zwart

Man completes 300-mile trip on paddleboard

Bart de Zwart expected to be in more pain after paddling 300 miles from the Big Island to Kauai.

"I'm not even sore," he said Monday morning from his Kauai hotel room, where he slept in a bed after arriving to Kalapaki Beach the night before onboard a stand-up paddleboard.

The 41-year-old Maui man spent five days alone at sea attempting what he believes to be the first-ever solo crossing from the Big Island to Kauai on a standup paddleboard. He was headed to a Kauai clinic Monday to have swollen, infected blisters on his feet checked out. Aside from the blisters and losing about six pounds, he said he felt fine.

Thanks for stopping by. Time for me to head on down the road…

Monday, June 27, 2011

Parting shots: Doobie or not doobie? That is the question, Bard...

The end of another day. Here’s a question to take with you: How many famous writers were stoned while composing their masterpieces? Has anyone kept track?

Some think the Bard of Avon was a loadie. A good argument I suppose for blazing a bowl before composing your great American novel. 

“A South African anthropologist has asked permission to open the graves of William Shakespeare and his family to determine, among other things, what killed the Bard and whether his poems and plays may have been composed under the influence of marijuana.”  Story

Ex-Gov. Blagojevich found guilty of corruption charges

I’ve been wondering why Blago’s trial hasn’t been getting the media’s attention like the Casey Anthony trial has. I guess it’s just not sensational enough for a ravening public.

Once upon a time, a story like this – A state governor trying to sell the President’s old Senate seat - would have been considered sensational. But, we’re all so use to corrupt politicians nowadays that this trial barely got a second-glance from anyone.

Former Illinois Gov. Rod Blagojevich said he is disappointed and "stunned" after a jury found him guilty on 17 corruption-related charges, including trying to sell or trade President Barack Obama's old Senate seat.

Blagojevich, who had spent two and a half years professing his innocence on reality TV shows and later on the witness stand, faces an undetermined amount of time in prison.

Late night jokes from Sunday night…

Betty White 6-11

Here’s a humorous roundup from last night’s reigning comedians:

Fallon: Airplane designers are planning a high-speed jet that can go from New York to London in one hour. Seriously? How about a jet that can go from the gate to the runway in one hour?

Leno: NBAs Ron Artest is changing his name to Metta World Peace. Not to be outdone, LeBron James is changing his name to Not Michael Jordan.

LeBron James 6-11

Conan: Egypt's military is Facebook polling for the country’s next leader. So, congratulations to Egypt's new leader, President Betty White.
Leno: Newt Gingrich’s campaign staff quit last week. Then his finance staff. He was going to quit the race, but his speechwriter quit too.

Fallon: A new study finds most Americans will have to work into their 70s and 80s to afford retirement. But then they'll have plenty of time to enjoy their golden year.

Letterman: Miss California won the Miss USA contest. Now the race is on to find the naked pictures.

Leno: Hugh Hefner is so depressed over his canceled wedding to Crystal Harris. They found him in the closed garage sitting on his Rascal scooter with the motor running.
Conan: NBC apologizes for deleting the words “under God” from the Pledge of Allegiance in its U.S. Open coverage.  NBC is also sorry that Brian Williams ended the Nightly News with “Hail Satan!”Letterman: Rory McIlroy won $1.4 million at the US Open. Congratulations. Once again, the money had to be borrowed from the Chinese Open.

Leno: You probably saw President Obama and House Speaker John Boehner had their big golf match. You know what Obama's handicap is? Joe Biden.

Marlins manager Jack McKeon 6-11

Leno: Interesting political news tonight: Our entire studio audience used to work for Newt Gingrich. Everyone has resigned.

Fallon: Researchers in Brazil have discovered an Amazon tribe that’s never made contact with the outside world. Which can only mean they’re using iPhones.

Leno: Al Gore publicly attacks President Obama for taking no bold action on global warming and not fighting hard enough to pass new legislation in Congress. Then the girl behind the counter said, 'Sir, can you please just pay for your ice cream and go?'


Fallon: Justin Bieber and President Obama both in New York tonight. Traffic gridlock with the most powerful man in the world and right down the street President Obama.

Leno: A new survey says the U.S. is the funniest country in the world and Germany is the least funny. Gee, imagine coming in behind that laugh riot land of Iran.

Conan: Apple founder Steve Jobs plans a new state-of-the-art corporate headquarters. Then in six months he’ll replace it with a slightly thinner headquarters with a crappy camera.

Conan: The Florida Marlins new manager Jack McKeon is 80-years-old. That makes him the oldest man working in baseball and the youngest man working in Florida.

Source

Manic Monday: the Dodgers go bankrupt and other stuff…

Good Morning Humboldt County!

Pull up a chair and have a cup of coffee or team with me as we take a quick glance at what’s happening in the world around us:

The Dodgers file for bankruptcy

A mere three days before the payroll comes due — payroll that Frank McCourt can’t meet — the Dodgers have filed for bankruptcy, reports Richard Sandomir. With that, the legal game begins.

Image: "Thriller" jacket

Michael Jackson 'Thriller' jacket sells for $1.8 million

A famed black-and-red calfskin jacket that Michael Jackson wore in the classic "Thriller" video has sold at auction for $1.8 million. I don’t know who these people are that can pay a king’s ransom for stuff like this.

Just a couple days ago the only known existing photo of Billy The Kid sold for $2 million dollars. That’s a lot of cash for just a photo.

We may be in a prolonged recession…but that’s not stopping the super rich from changing their costly collecting habits. This outrageous waste of money is par for the course when your rich and bored.

Image: An aerial view of the Fort Calhoun Nuclear Power Plant in eastern Nebraska, surrounded by Missouri River flood waters

Nebraska nuclear plant safe despite flooding, officials say

Floodwater seeping into the turbine building at a nuclear power plant near Omaha on the banks of the Missouri River is not a safety risk, officials said Monday.

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Coming Next Sunday in As It Stands – “Oh say Can You See – a Nuclear Free Country?”

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Omaha Public Power District spokesman Jeff Hanson said that seepage was expected at the Fort Calhoun Nuclear Station and that pumps were handling the problem.

Flooding remains a concern all along the Missouri because of massive amounts of water the U.S. Army Corps of Engineers has released from upstream reservoirs. The river is expected to rise as much as 5 to 7 feet above flood stage in much of Nebraska and Iowa and as much as 10 feet over flood stage in parts of Missouri.

It’s time to get on with the day. Thanks for stopping by. Hope to see you again soon. Time for me to head on down the road…

Sunday, June 26, 2011

As It Stands: Why global warming is such a controversial subject

By Dave Stancliff/For The Times-Standard

Posted: 06/26/2011 02:40:17 AM PDT

This year in particular I've heard a lot of talk about global warming because of all the natural disasters world wide. Tsunamis, tornados, volcanoes, earthquakes, record flooding, and record freezing temperatures have been almost biblical in their frequency and destruction.

So what's going on? Some say the Earth is heating up rapidly because of man-made pollution penetrating the ozone. Others say the Earth is just having its natural good and bad cycles (in terms of human habitation).

In fact, a Gallup Poll in March claimed 51 percent of Americans worry about global warming. I'd say that shows how divided we are on this controversial issue.

The idea that mankind could negatively affect the climate by using fossil fuels is not new. The first talk of global warming goes back to 1896. A Swedish scientist, Svante Arrhenius, first suggested the idea. He proposed a direct relationship between carbon dioxide concentrations and temperature.

No one seemed concerned enough about the possible danger to the planet to pursue Arrhenius' research until 70 years later. Scientists showed a renewed interest in the earth's climate in the 1970s and 1980s.

Lead researchers in the early 1970s discovered that chlorofluorocarbons (CFCs) broke down into elementary chlorine in the presence of UV light emitted by the sun. CFCs were widely used as refrigerants, propellants (in aerosol applications) and solvents.

They also found a single molecule of elementary chlorine could destroy over 100,000 ozone (03) molecules. This discovery led to a worldwide ban on CFCs by the late 1990s (see Ozone Science: The Facts behind the Phaseout).

During this two decade period scientists thought the world was cooling. That theory gave way to the opposite one of global warming in the 1980s and 1990s. In 1988, global governments formed an Intergovernmental Panel on Climate Change (IPCC).

In 1999, Indian climatologist Syed Hasnain speculated that the Himalayan glaciers would “vanish within 40 years as a result of global warming.” Fred Pearce, a reporter for The New Scientist magazine, quoted Hasnain's contention.

 Like a good journalist, Pearce noted that Hasnain cautioned his data was speculative, hadn't been published and wasn't peer reviewed. The interview would have faded into history, but was revived in 2001 when the IPCC used it to show a millennium of relatively stable global-average temperatures followed by a sharp increase in the 20th century.

Apparently ignoring Hasnain's warning that the report wasn't properly vetted, it was cited again in 2005 in a report by the World Wildlife Fund (WWF). The report was a lobbying and fundraising tool.

This misuse of the Hasnain interview opened the door for a faulty foundation to be laid by the IPCC. They took Hasnain's untested speculation without doing any fact checking and ran with it. If they had checked it out, I suspect they never would not have quoted it once more in a 2007 report claiming “glaciers in the Himalayas are receding faster than those in any other part of the world.”

Throw in Climategate, when IPCC emails revealed discussions by leading IPCC scientists about how to exclude dissidents and skeptics from the body's report-writing processes and you can see why so many people don't believe in global warming. Protecting false science didn't give the IPCC much credibility.

Despite some doubtful information, there is also credible information on the effects of fossil fuels on the environment. To read more, I recommend the following: an article “Global Warming” which ran Jan. 13, 2011, in the New York Post; NASA's Earth Observatory website; and ScienceDaily.com.

frozenpalin Our two-party system is divided over the credibility of global warming caused by fossil fuels. The Republicans feel they have to deny any facts supporting fossil fuel as a cause of global warming to protect Big Oil. The Democrats feel they're hitting the high road because they side with the environmentalist agenda, even though they too have a habit of skipping uncomfortable facts that don't support their contentions.

Whatever you want to call it, the Earth is experiencing drastic changes. Islands sink as sea levels rise. Instead of denying what we know to be true, that ancient glaciers are thawing, and temperatures are rising rapidly in areas that were cooler in recent history, we should unite in an effort to deal with what we can see, and prepare ourselves for climatic changes that surely lie ahead.

As It Stands, I hope the subject will transcend politics someday, and we still have time to take the appropriate actions for future generations.

WEBSITES CARRYING THIS COLUMN:

Doing It Green -

The Daily Jabber

Global Warming Cycles

Earth Global Warming