“Soft despotism is a term coined by Alexis de Tocqueville describing the state into which a country overrun by "a network of small complicated rules" might degrade. Soft despotism is different from despotism (also called 'hard despotism') in the sense that it is not obvious to the people."

Monday, June 15, 2015

Climate Change Causing Massive Shifts in Marine Ecosystems

Richard Kirby of the Marine Biological Association says the worst case scenario is a greater disruption to marine life than has occurred in the last 3 million years

Leaked Report:

Pope: Climate change a moral issue and due to human activity

USA TODAY - VATICAN CITY — Pope Francis says most climate change is due to human activity and calls it one of the most important moral issues facing society, according to a draft leaked Monday of his long-awaited encyclical on global warming.
The 191-page draft says the problem needs urgent action and is a key issue related to development and poverty.
The leaked draft in Italian was posted online Monday by L'Espresso magazine, prompting consternation from the Vatican. The final document is scheduled to be released Thursday. The Vatican asked journalists to "respect professional standards" and await the final text.
The Vatican spokesman, Federico Lombardi, called the leak a “heinous decision" and cautioned that the document was a draft and not necessarily an accurate reflection of what the final encyclical will say.
"This is a major ethical breach," said church historian and retired priest Alistair Sear. "I don't know how the magazine (L'Espresso) can justify it. This should never happen, as it undermines the efforts of the church, and media were specifically asked not to release anything ahead of time."
Calls to L'Espresso seeking comment were not returned.
The draft is broken into six chapters, with headings such as "what is happening to our house," "the human roots of the ecological crisis" and "integrated ecology."
According to the leaked document, the pope says the world is addicted to a "culture of waste." The draft also says, "Humanity is called on to be aware of the need to change lifestyles, production and consumption."
The pope describes a “scientific consensus … (about a) worrisome warming of the climate system."
The pope's encyclical, or teaching letter, on the environment will be disseminated to the world's 1.2 billion Catholics and could influence the United Nations conference on climate change being held in December in Paris. More than 190 nations at the conference will try to reach an agreement to limit greenhouse gas emissions.
"We expect the papal encyclical to have a major impact during a very critical year in this (climate negotiation) process," the U.N.'s top climate official, Christiana Figueres, said last week in Bonn, Germany.
Contributing: Gregg Zoroya in McLean, Va.


  1. The Pope ought to stick to subjects about which he actually knows something.

    No one knows for sure what is going on with the climate.

    As Quirk pointed out, our computer programs aren't nearly sophisticated enough to deal with it, along with the fact we don't have enough data, and much of the data we do have has been 'nudged' this way and that by the monkeys in the climate business.

    And it's possible we might be, or God may be, as you wish, saving ourselves from an overdue ice age.

    There's lots of money in climate change.

    And political power, too.

    Fire and Ice
    By Robert Frost

    Some say the world will end in fire,
    Some say in ice.
    From what I’ve tasted of desire
    I hold with those who favor fire.
    But if it had to perish twice,
    I think I know enough of hate
    To say that for destruction ice
    Is also great
    And would suffice.

    1. >>The leaked draft in Italian was posted online Monday by L'Espresso magazine, prompting consternation from the Vatican.<<

      I am sorry the Vatican is 'consternated' though.

      It's a hell of a way to live.

  2. I'm shocked to find Mississippi ranking so low on the Boozing Index

    >>The South likely has fewer drinkers because of its high proportion of Southern Baptists, who frown upon excessive alcohol consumption, according to It’s also known for having “dry counties,” where beer and liquor cannot be purchased. Roman Catholics, found in higher numbers in the North, like in Wisconsin, have a more lenient stance on alcohol; some Catholic communities even embrace drinking. Mormons prohibit drinking entirely, which explain Utah’s dryness, and strict laws; grocery stores can’t sell liquor or wine, and the only beer you can buy in the state has very low alcohol content.<<

    Washington D. C. being right at the top in all categories comes as no surprise, though.

    Where Americans Drink the Most
    By Douglas Main 6/13/15 at 11:17 AM

    Wisconsin seems to be the overall champ.