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Hurricane Ike: Worse Case Scenario, “Certain Death” Forecasted


Officials have warned that Hurricane Ike, with its expected imminent landfall along the Galveston-Houston, Texas coast, may present the feared worse-case-scenario, which includes the ominous prediction of “certain death” for those who ignore mandatory evacuation.

Residents living in single-family homes in some parts of coastal Texas face “certain death” if they do not heed orders to evacuate ahead of Hurricane Ike’s arrival, the National Weather Service said Thursday night.

The unusually strong wording came in a weather advisory regarding storm surge along the shoreline of Galveston Bay, which could see maximum water levels of 15 to 22 feet, the agency said.

“All neighborhoods … and possibly entire coastal communities … will be inundated during the period of peak storm tide,” the advisory said. “Persons not heeding evacuation orders in single-family one- or two-story homes will face certain death.”

There are concerns about people ignoring the mandatory evacuation order due to “hurricane fatigue.” This 700 mile-wide storm may not be the event upon which to take that chance.

Here are some facts:

  • Ike is receiving the same surge warnings as Katrina. This was the surge that wiped out parts of the Mississippi Gulf Coast. In Ike’s case, the likeliest surge landfall is in Texas.
  • Tidal surges could exceed 20 feet; greater than Katrina.
  • The cone is narrowing toward Galveston and Houston, but it is a very large storm.
  • The entire storm is building up and blowing water toward Galveston Bay – that is the reason for the dire warnings about a high surge.
  • Because of the wide area for the storm surge, mandatory evacuation zones extend to a wide area of the Gulf Coast with Galveston Bay being the center of the surge’s focus.
  • Everywhere there is a mandatory warning, it is estimated that the surge could be up and or exceed 20 feet.
  • Hurricane Ike has already proven to be a storm surge generator in the Caribbean, where tidal surges pounded into shore above five story buildings.
  • The Barrier Islands are too low to stop this surge.

More below the fold…

Scottish Americans Unite!! Craig Ferguson’s brilliant rant

From CBS: On the Sept. 10th edition of The Late, Late Show with Craig Ferguson, a new American citizen preparing to vote in his first US election asks, “Are we so lost we have to be sold our own democratic right!?”


Gustav Realities

The Environmentalist has an article for Reuters on Gustav.

We’ve had reports of people ignoring the mandatory evacuation order.  Here’s what those who stay will (not may, will) face:

  • Gustav is pulling more heat out of the Gulf than Katrina.
  • The Gulf loop current is nearing 90 degrees.  That exceeds the high temperature that fed Katrina.
  • Tidal surges could exceed 20 feet; greater than Katrina.
  • The cone is narrowing toward Louisiana with New Orleans in the bullseye.
  • While it may not hit New Orleans, it still may.
  • There will be no city services.
  • The cool waters just offshore may not be able to sufficiently stop its momentum.
  • The wetlands, New Orleans’ only protection, are not returned enough to health to slow it down.
  • The levees are not built to hold above a certain strength of surge; one that Gustav may exceed.

Also: there are three named storms in Gustav’s wake that are on the same path; one that is nearing hurricane strength just east of the Caribbean.  

Anyone still there should get out fast.  Don’t leave it until the last minute.  The evacuations could break down at any time.  

Even climate scientists who ride in hurricane planes are getting out of the way of this one.  It’s a potential monster with no way to know how high the surge will become.  

Sometimes life (and death) intrudes

I haven’t been posting much lately.  It’s not personal to Dharmakarma. I enjoy it here. Just had life (and death) intrude.  Not looking for sympathy and am not putting this on the front page as it is personal, but do have a story to share for those few (if any) who might wonder where I’ve gone.

About year ago, a dear friend lost her father. She was unable to adequately mourn because, at the time, she was being treated rather badly by some maniacs who’d decided they didn’t like her political positions (which, btw, mirror my own). I moved in with her, as a friend, at first, because I was concerned for her. That friendship grew with my admiration at her ability to handle hardship. There are some people in this world who are simply special.  She is one of them and I love her dearly. However, I did not entirely understand the pain she was experiencing, partly because she handled it so well. Now, through a loss of my own, I’ve come to understand and realise that my support for my friend had been inadequate.

More below the fold…

James Hansen to the G8: We’ve passed safe C02 levels


We’ve reached the tipping point:

On the eve the annual G8 Summit where NASA’s Dr. James Hansen will announce that we’ve passed safe C02 levels (safe being maximum 350 ppm; we’re now at 385 ppm), Hansen has penned a comprehensive letter (PDF) to Japanese Prime Minister Yasuo Fukuda, host of the G8 Summit, requesting his leadership in addressing his findings.

From Dr. Hansen’s letter (Reprinted with his permission on THE ENVIRONMENTALIST)

Dear Prime Minister [Yasuo Fukuda],

Your leadership, and continued leadership by Japan, is needed on the matter of climate change, a matter with ramifications for life on our planet, including all species. Prospects for today’s children, and especially the world’s poor, hinge upon success in stabilizing climate. ~snip~

Japan has been a strong supporter of actions to mitigate dangerous climate change, including the Kyoto Protocol. It is not Japan’s fault that international action has failed so far to slow emission of dangerous gases. But as the host for the upcoming G8 meeting, you can initiate discussion of an approach that could meet the challenge humanity faces.

The past approach, and extensions now under discussion, are fatally flawed and would doom our children and grandchildren to an increasingly impoverished life on a more desolate planet. Clear thinking and bold leadership of the international community are essential in the next 1-2 years to change the course of human history.

More below the fold…

McCain: Lock-step and (oil) barrel


Wonderful rant from our Managing Editor that ties McCain to Big Oil:

In a campaign year where John McCain is seemingly doing everything he can to publicly distance himself from George W. Bush, he’s also been emulating the historically unpopular president by walking in lock-step with him along the path to Texas oil.

While Barack Obama was in Illinois shoveling sand in bags to hold back the Bush-neglected infrastructure crumbling around him — resulting in a multi-state version of Katrina with both an oblivious Republican president and Republican presidential candidate — John McCain just happened to be on his way to Texas to accept the whoops and cheers (and money) from oil industry insiders for his proclaimed flip-flop on offshore drilling as the answer to America’s oil-supply woes.

Want something worse? Aside from the fact that he did it while Senator Obama was showing empathy to those impacted by an unstable climate and deteriorating infrastructure, it turns out that John McCain gave his oil pandering speech CONCURRENT to the release of his new ad-buy proclaiming his independence from the Bush Administration on global warming.

The entire article here.

McCain’s speech leaves Fox News speechless (video)

Our managing editor forwarded this.  Haven’t laughed so much in months (amidst renewed encouragement for an Obama win against McCain). A quick post to share (in case you haven’t yet seen it):


What’s with the Weather? The La Niña-Tornado Connection

Excerpted by permission from THE ENVIRONMENTALIST:

2008 has seen a record outbreak of tornadoes in the United States from California to the Midwest, from the South through the central plains, to the Appalachian states.

In January, THE ENVIRONMENTALIST reported the University of East Anglia’s prediction for a strong 2008 La Niña event.

“The assessment for 2008 is that there will be a “strong La Niña” event in the Pacific, which will limit the warming trend for the year (whilst still being one of the warmest years).”

The La Niña phenomenon is an upwelling of colder waters resulting in a change in ocean temperature that causes a shift in the jet stream, reducing corresponding climate temperature. While this NOAA study from October, 1999, still referenced on their site, which uses data from 1950 through 1996, concluded there was no tornadic connection to the El Niño/La Niña event, Joseph Schaefer, Director of the National Storm Center, seems to have revised that position, according to this February MSNBC report:

Tornadoes do happen in February, but a study by Schaefer two years ago found that winter tornadoes in parts of the South occur more frequently and are stronger when there is a La Niña…

Full article, graphs, climate change considerations and links at THE ENVIRONMENTALIST

McCain’s Murderers Row

A new contributing writer on THE ENVIRONMENTALIST, Cliff Schecter, the author of THE REAL McCAIN, has outlined, in his first post for us, the connections between three of McCain’s top staffers and their paid lobbying efforts for the Burmese Junta, Saudi Arabia, various African dictatorships; a veritable ‘Murderers Row’.

Here’s an excerpt:

A new website has been created by Campaign Money Watch to convince Senator McCain to fire three lobbyists working on his campaign that have ties to ruthless dictators. You may recall that over the past two days, two McCain aides have resigned because of their willingness to do public relations work for the Burmese Junta.

It turns out that they have friends in low places, however. I contacted David Donnelly, Director of Campaign Money Watch, for a comment, and what he had to say explains what his group is trying to accomplish:

“John McCain ought to immediately fire three lobbyists – Charlie Black, Tom Loeffler, and Peter Madaigan — whose lobbying for brutal dictators and foreign governments is every bit as bad as the two lobbyists who left his campaign over the weekend. Frankly, McCain’s campaign is turning out to be an effort of, by, and for these types of Washington influence peddlers. His credentials as a reformer are gone.”

Pretty strong words. Yet, if you read what these men have been up to, perhaps not strong enough…

Please visit THE ENVIRONMENTALIST for the details and pass this link on to everyone you know:  


From our editor:  “The media is ignoring McCain’s campaign ties to these rogue regimes.  We’re not.”  

I am numb

I am numb.  I have seen far too much human suffering brought on by humans after a natural disaster had uncovered their inhumanity.  

I am haunted. The view from the hinterlands of Burma is biblical in its scope and complete in its destruction.

I am exhausted.  I could not stay.  There was too much disease (cholera and malaria) and the powers that be in my life would not let me become exposed.  

I am rude.  I am writing this as my lovely lady makes dinner and watches me out of the corner of her eye, worried at the darkness that has enveloped me, the depression she cannot shake me out of, despite her best efforts.  She’ll succeed eventually, but, for now, she is a comfort and for that, I am grateful, though I was rude to her earlier and feel ashamed.

Why Rush Limbaugh thinks THE ENVIRONMENTALIST is ‘unfriendly’

Recently, THE ENVIRONMENTALIST published an article entitled: Hillary Clinton’s ‘Victory’ in Pennsylvania: The Rush Limbaugh Effect.  The article discusses the potential impact on the primary numbers by those influenced to change their registration from Republican to Democrat, in order to vote for Hillary Clinton, as part of Limbaugh’s “Operation Chaos.”

Today, our managing editor was informed that Mr. Limbaugh had mentioned our magazine on his radio show.

His comments and her response is here:



The Latest News – Three Must Reads


New guest contributors (and our staff) have managed to break new ground with these posts:  

The Gas Tax ‘Holiday’ Shell Game

Senators Hillary Clinton and John McCain have challenged Senator Barack Obama over his refusal to support their proposal that would suspend the .18 Federal gas tax for three months this summer. ~snip~ The lone ‘expert’ in support of Senators Clinton and McCain in this scenario so far?  Spokesman for the Clinton campaign and SHELL OIL LOBBYIST, Steve Elmendorf.  

Hillary Clinton’s ‘Victory’ in Pennsylvania: The Rush Limbaugh Effect

What if Democratic voters and the uncommitted super-delegates come to learn that Rush Limbaugh had a greater impact on Hillary Clinton’s victory in Pennsylvania, and maybe Texas and Ohio, than say, the Reverend Wright, and the so-called ‘bitter’ comments?

‘Friends of the Earth’ endorse Obama

The Friends of the Earth Action, the PAC political arm of The Friends of the Earth environmental organization, has endorsed Senator Barack Obama for President, citing Senator Obama’s stand for “real energy solutions instead of sham Clinton-McCain ‘gas tax holiday'” as the key reason for endorsement.



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