Friday, September 19, 2014

A Savvy Ecocosmological Earth Calendar - Revisited

Click on Sun to Enlarge
There was a hearing in the House of "Representatives" recently.

It concerned the issue of The Damaged Global Climate System.

Inadvertently it also concerned The Damaged Mental Cognition of House of Representative Luddites.

But what amazed me was that both the scientist testifying for the White House and the House Luddite were off (the House Luddite was a galaxy off, the scientist was less off the mark - I think axial precession climate change should be a consideration in any really long-range climate models (e.g. 13,000 yrs.), but he thought such factors were de minimis).

The Luddite from Texas called the phenomenon of Axial Precession "Global Wobbling."

Since it is Friday, and since we do rebel science on Friday, I thought I would rebel against the Ignoratti in the House of Reprehensibles who prey for Amurka.

Thus, today I offer a reprint of A Savvy Ecocosmological Earth Calendar - 2 from the Ecocosmology Blog (that text is between the double horizontals below):

In this series so far we have looked at the extremely close similarity (in terms of the ~26,000 year cycle) of the Long Count Calendar and the Earth's axial precession (see A Savvy Ecocosmological Earth Calendar).

In today's post we look at the cycle of the axial precession in terms of current calendar months.

We offer a hypothesis that this is a built-in cosmic global climate system dynamic (a ~26,000 year cycle).

The graphic above shows one complete cycle of the Earth's axial precession, i.e.
one "rotation" of the axial tilt.

At each 30 degrees on the graphic there is a date, beginning with 10,948 B.C. @ 0 [zero] degrees, then continuing to the present time (2012 A.D. @ 180 degrees), then proceeding on around to 14,972 A.D. @ 360 degrees.

Which comprises and completes one axial precession cycle of the Earth's axial tilt (which is one global climate system axial precession cycle).

Each degree,of the 360 degrees total,
represents 72 years so each 30 degrees represents 2,160 years, thus, an axial precession cycle takes about 26,000 years (25,920 yrs. to be more exact).

The reason the 30 degree segments of 2,160 years is used is because we hypothesize that this is the amount of time it takes the climate to change in terms of a one-month morph of that month's seasonal characteristics (see Government Climate Change Report - 5 and Government Climate Change Report - 4).

The following list of months and their seasonal characteristics, in terms of being a Winter, Spring, Summer, or Autumn month, is shown for each date marked at every 30 degrees on the graphic at the top of this post:
10,948 B.C. (0 degrees)
(Winter) June, July, August
(Spring) September, October, November
(Summer) December, January, February
(Autumn) March, April, May

8,788 B.C. (30 degrees)
(Winter) May, June, July
(Spring) August, September, October
(Summer) November, December, January
(Autumn) February, March, April

6,628 B.C. (60 degrees)
(Winter) April, May, June
(Spring) July, August, September
(Summer) October, November, December
(Autumn) January, February, March

4,468 B.C. (90 degrees)
(Winter) March, April, May
(Spring) June, July, August
(Summer) September, October, November
(Autumn) December, January, February

2,308 B.C. (120 degrees)
(Winter) February, March, April
(Spring) May, June, July
(Summer) August, September, October
(Autumn) November, December, January

148 B.C. (150 degrees)
(Winter) January, February, March
(Spring) April, May, June
(Summer) July, August, September
(Autumn) October, November, December

2012 A.D. (180 degrees)
(Winter) December, January, February
(Spring) March, April, May
(Summer) June, July, August
(Autumn) September, October, November

4,172 A.D. (210 degrees)
(Winter) January, February, March
(Spring) April, May, June
(Summer) July, August, September
(Autumn) October, November, December

6,332 A.D. (240 degrees)
(Winter) February, March, April
(Spring) May, June, July
(Summer) August, September, October
(Autumn) November, December, January

8,492 A.D. (270 degrees)
(Winter) March, April, May
(Spring) June, July, August
(Summer) September, October, November
(Autumn) December, January, February

10,652 A.D. (300 degrees)
(Winter) April, May, June
(Spring) July, August, September
(Summer) October, November, December
(Autumn) January, February, March

12,812 A.D. (330 degrees)
(Winter) May, June, July
(Spring) August, September, October
(Summer) November, December, January
(Autumn) February, March, April

14,972 A.D. (360 degrees)
(Winter) June, July, August
(Spring) September, October, November
(Summer) December, January, February
(Autumn) March, April, May
The gist of this is that about each 13,000 years (each 12,960 yrs. --at the time they developed it, to be more exact), the months of Winter in Washington, D.C. in the U.S.A. now (December, January, February) become the months of Summer (June, July, August) in terms of their seasonal type-of-weather orientation.

This happens because the axial precession reaches the maximum 180 degree
Main Degrees of Axial Precession
opposite tilt (either tilting toward the Sun, or the opposite, tilting away from the Sun) then returns to 0/360 degrees to begin another axial precession cycle anew.

It is not that the months change, no, they still have their 30, 31, 28/29. number of days per month, are still spelled the same, and January is still the first month while December is still the 12th month (etc.).

It is just that the axial tilt of the Earth toward or away from the Sun impacts upon the global climate system (in terms of which hemisphere is impacted with more solar energy), and this is an easy way to symbolically represent that change in the global climate system, in terms of the impact on weather at that geographical location.

The quantity of the impact on weather in the northern hemisphere (temperature change, rainfall, ice melt, sea-level, etc.), as well as on the global climate system itself, will be considered in later posts in this series.

The previous post in this series is here.

The following video shows an axial procession cycle:

@14:30: The climate of one state is moving north to another state as it were:

Thursday, September 18, 2014

Etiology of Social Dementia - Revisited

Regular readers know that from time to time Dredd Blog posts are revisited.

This helps us to remember that some things didn't just start happening yesterday.

On September 18, 2009 Dredd Blog began a series about dementia, but since that time the subject has not died and gone away, no, it is even more relevant today, because dementia has seriously increased along with suicide.

The ideas expressed in that post in that series are just as true today as they were then.

No doubt dementia is known in our society.

Some of that dementia has unknown causes.

In general, then, some of them come to us with no known cures.

We live in a sophisticated society that faces some diseases that have unknown causes and no known cures.

One of the more well known mental diseases of that particular group can even be deadly:
Some researchers are convinced that, whatever its cause, Alzheimer's disease is essentially an inflammatory condition, similar to rheumatoid arthritis ... there is no cure ... According to a report released in June 2001 by the Center for Disease Control and Prevention, Alzheimer's disease was the 8th main cause of death in the USA in 1999, rising from 12th position in 1998.
(Dementia). A realm of medicine called Etiology looks for the root cause or origin of such diseases.

Alzheimer's is a personal disease, an individual disease that infects on a person by person basis.

But there are obviously times when entire nations "go crazy", and do strange things. Things like attacking other nations for no sound reason, or becoming inexplicably belligerent, or the like.

Take for examples, 1930's Germany that invaded various nations of Europe and started World War II, or North Korea today which threatens to do the same for the same invalid "reasons".

These are extremes that reach the border of sanity or proper social behavior, so social scientists do a sort of social etiology in an attempt to fathom how the madness originates and spreads so disastrously.

Currently in the U.S. we have symptoms of a national dementia, not unlike that of 1930's Germany, which has been around at least since General and later President Eisenhower warned against it.

The U.S. is spending more than all the rest of the world combined on weapons of mass destruction and tactical weapons, as well as having built military bases in 120 or more countries, evidently intent on maintaining them indefinitely.

Since this comes at the cost of human health and wealth, it is naturally seen by many as a sign of a national dementia.

Some observers see this dementia originating in the early 20th century when government or those behind government perceived a need to control the people, but realized that they could not do it by physical means.

Thus they took to propaganda in an effort to control the minds rather than use physical control.

Eventually this led to a mega-industry of businesses whose function was to deceive the people into believing something other than the truth of events occurring around them.

One tell tale sign of dementia is an inability to articulate or speak clearly.

Our language itself has enough holes in it to drive a truckload of propaganda through.

Check out this simple test that gives an indication of what is being said with our tricky language and what is not.

This national speech impairment has not gone unnoticed by the scientific community. One professor calls this doublespeak, and has written a book "Why No One Knows What Anyone Is Saying Anymore". He points out:
With doublespeak, banks don't have "bad loans" or "bad debts"; they have "nonperforming assets" or "nonperforming credits" which are "rolled over" or "rescheduled." Corporations never lose money; they just experience "negative cash flow," "deficit enhancement," "net profit revenue deficiencies," or "negative contributions to profits."
(William Lutz, Rutgers University). What is forgotten is that this propaganda is not harmless but is toxic, and those who use it are doomed to eventually become deceived by it.

Thus, it is possible that we are beginning to see the national manifestations of our massive practice of deceit in our nation, because deceit removes reality from the target to be deceived, and not being aware of reality is otherwise known as dementia.

In essence then, when governments, businesses, and those behind them decide to deceive the people "for their own good", they are actually injecting dementia into the populace.

With the massive technologies we have for spreading deceit "through the air waves", we can even say that the disease has become airborne, which usually strikes terror into the hearts of the Center For Disease Control, because that brings on pandemics of the untreatable kind.

The movie "Outbreak" released in 1995, before the words "WMD', "9/11", or "neoCon" hit the airwaves of the masses, starring: Dustin Hoffman, Rene Russo, Morgan Freeman, Kevin Spacey, Cuba Gooding Jr., Donald Sutherland, Patrick Dempsey, etc., is a good study on the subject of this post. (Hat tip to Christie)

It shows that the military will take out civilians and spread propaganda when it suits their purposes, which always come first; and it shows the proper citizen response.

The next post in this series is here.

Thanks for stopping by Dredd Blog today.

Wednesday, September 17, 2014

How Fifth Graders Calculate Ice Volume - 5

Confusion about area2 and volume3
In this series we have looked at a simple fifth grade arithmetic problem.

Also, we have looked at how supposedly grown up sophisticates look at the same problem.

The rub comes when we point out that the fifth graders get it and can answer the problem correctly ... but the sophisticated grown ups cannot.

What gives?

Well, it is a classic study in denialism of the type we discussed yesterday (The Peak of Sanity - 9).

Even the people at LiveScience do not seem to want to keep up with the fifth graders on this subject.

They still want to confuse ice extent (ice2) with ice volume (ice3) so as to perpetuate the myth they created, i.e., the myth that Antarctic Ice is increasing while Arctic Ice is decreasing.

How could this myth survive the new satellite data revelations?

Look at the science of today produced by a specialized satellite:
The planet's two largest ice sheets – in Greenland and Antarctica – are
now being depleted at an astonishing rate of 120 cubic miles each year. That is the discovery made by scientists using data from CryoSat-2, the European probe that has been measuring the thickness of Earth's ice sheets and glaciers since it was launched by the European Space Agency in 2010.

Even more alarming, the rate of loss of ice from the two regions has more than doubled since 2009, revealing the dramatic impact that climate change is beginning to have on our world.
(How Fifth Graders Calculate Ice Volume - 4, emphasis in original post). The answer the fifth graders come up with, as does NASA, as does the team of scientists and engineers who operate the specialized satellite, is that ice volume at both poles is decreasing at the astonishing rate we have only recently discovered.

And that rate is accelerating alarmingly.

Nevertheless, the science writer at LiveScience conflates and confounds the issues involved with calculating ice volume, to wit:
For an unprecedented third year in a row, Antarctica's sea ice is poised to smash a new record this month.

The Southern Hemisphere's unrelenting winds and frigid air froze ocean water into 7.6 million square miles (19.7 million square kilometers) of Antarctic sea ice this southern winter, the National Snow and Ice Data Center (NSIDC) said yesterday (Sept. 16).

With several more weeks of growth to go, Antarctica's sea-ice extent could soar well above the records set in 2012 and 2013. For now, only 88,800 square miles (230,000 square km) separate the 2013 and 2014 high marks.

Sea-ice extent is the total ocean area in which the ice concentration is at least 15 percent, as measured by satellite.

Arctic ice loss

Antarctica's record-breaking ice growth contrasts with shrinking sea ice in the Arctic. The Arctic ice cap hit its summer minimum of 1.96 million square miles (5.07 million square km) on Sept. 15, the NSIDC said. Covering an area roughly twice the size of Greenland, the expanse is the sixth lowest minimum since satellite tracking started in 1979. The numbers are essentially the same as 2013's low of 1.97 million square miles (5.1 million square km), the NSIDC said.
(Antarctica ... Sea Ice ... High, Arctic Ice ... Shrinking, emphasis added). The answer of course is that Oil-Qaeda pays much more money for "good press" than green environmentalists do.

They pay people not to know that ice "extent" is an expression of how much area, in square miles or square kilometers, the ice covers, while ignoring that ice "volume" is an expression of how much quantity or volume of ice exists, in cubic miles, or cubic kilometers:

Table 1. Estimated potential maximum sea-level rise from the total melting of present-day glaciers and polar ice caps. Source: USGS
Potential sea-level rise,
East Antarctic ice sheet
West Antarctic ice sheet
Antarctic Peninsula
All other ice caps, ice fields, and valley glaciers
[Note: 80.32 meters equals 263.5 feet]
(How Fifth Graders Calculate Ice Volume - 2). The fact that the amount of ice at both poles is decreasing, Decreasing, DECREASING, is all we need to know.

How much ocean the decreasing ice volume covers in square miles or square kilometers is utterly irrelevant to how much ice volume there is (How Fifth Graders Calculate Ice Volume).

The deceitful writers who try to confuse us, by insinuating that the ice at one pole is decreasing, while ice at the other pole is increasing, are deceitful or ignorant ... or both (Agnotology: The Surge, 2, 3, 4, 5, 6, 7, 8, 9, 10, 11, 12).

UPDATE (12/15/14): A dishonest writer, Jonathan Amos, of the BBC writes a falsehood post (Arctic sea ice volume holds up in 2014).

It is false because the ice volume continues to diminish at an accelerating rate:
New results reveal combined ice volume loss at an unprecedented rate of 500 cubic kilometres a year.
It is important to assess how ice-sheet surface elevation and thickness across Greenland and Antarctica is changing to understand how they are contributing to sea-level rise.

Using an astonishing 200 million data points across Antarctica and 14.3 million across Greenland collected by CryoSat, the team were able to study how the ice sheets changed over the three years.

The resulting maps reveal that Greenland alone [by itself] is reducing in volume by about 375 cubic kilometres a year.

The two ice sheets combined are thinning [losing volume] at a rate of 500 cubic kilometres a year, the highest rate observed since altimetry satellite records began about 20 years ago.

The researchers say the ice sheets’ annual contribution to sea-level rise has doubled since 2009.

Glaciologist Angelika Humbert, another of the study’s authors, added, “Since 2009, the volume loss in Greenland has increased by a factor of about two and the West Antarctic Ice Sheet by a factor of three.
(ESA Cryosat Website, 20 August 2014, emphasis added). The BBC writer of the wrong story, Jonathan Amos, is not quite a fifth grader yet.

The previous post in this series is here.

Monday, September 15, 2014

The Peak of Sanity - 9

Denial Castle high on the Hill
One of the dynamics of our mind which we can observe in action from time to time is the "defense mechanism" we call "denial."

Probably one of the strangest aspects of sanity and insanity is that there are times when insanity is the more comfortable state of mind.

We embrace sanity because we think it is more comfortable, but we embrace insanity for the same reason - a type of mental "comfort."

This is readily apparent when we delve into the dynamics of denial, a known dynamic of the part of cognition that we call "dementia" even though it is a daily phenomenon in our lives:
I denied climate change for longer than I care to admit. I knew it was happening, sure. But I stayed pretty hazy on the details and only skimmed most news stories. I told myself the science was too complicated and the environmentalists were dealing with it. And I continued to behave as if there was nothing wrong with the shiny card in my wallet attesting to my "elite" frequent-flyer status.

A great many of us engage in this kind of denial. We look for a split second and then we look away. Or maybe we do really look, but then we forget. We engage in this odd form of on-again-off-again ecological amnesia for perfectly rational reasons. We deny because we fear that letting in the full reality of this crisis will change everything.

And we are right. If we continue on our current path of allowing emissions to rise year after year, major cities will drown, ancient cultures will be swallowed by the seas; our children will spend much of their lives fleeing and recovering from vicious storms and extreme droughts. Yet we continue all the same.
(Naomi Klein - Denial, emphasis added). This mixes the activity of individuals in with the activity of society  or civilization.

In some ways civilization does have some characteristics of individuals. especially when we take a famous historian's observation into consideration:
"In other words, a society does not ever die 'from natural causes', but always dies from suicide or murder --- and nearly always from the former, as this chapter has shown."
(Civilization Is Now On Suicide Watch, quoting Toynbee, emphasis added). Suicide and murder are prevalent in our society, so, both individuals and society face those threats.

This Dredd Blog series has dealt with those twin threats to current civilization, in the sense of the threat of nuclear war ("War Is Madness" - Pope Francis) and the threats due to the damaged global climate system.

We examined how we got to where we are as well (see e.g. Agnotology: The Surge, The Science of Why We Don't Believe Science).

When a society "gets something in its head" it tends to stubbornly refuse to entertain facts that conflict with that belief:
In spite of the experimental evidence of infant pain, the psychological and medical communities were slow to accept and integrate these findings into daily practices and protocols--mainly because of the earlier dogma that the immaturity of the brain made it impossible for babies to experience, comprehend, or remember pain.
Hospitalized newborns, from premies of 26 weeks upward, have routinely faced surgery without benefit of pain-killing anesthetics. Although surgery without anesthetic was standard practice for a century, it was unknown to the general public until 1985 when a few parents discovered their seriously ill premature babies had suffered through major surgery with no anesthetic. Instead of anesthetic, the babies had typically been given a form of curare to paralyze their muscles for surgery, making it impossible for them to lift a finger or make a sound in protest!
(Infant Pain, Birth Psychology). Our innocent little ones suffer because of our denialism, then they tend to grow up and do the same.

The irony is that denial is perceived as a "defense" mechanism too:
Denial is probably one of the best known defense mechanisms, used often to describe situations in which people seem unable to face reality or admit an obvious truth (i.e. "He's in denial."). Denial is an outright refusal to admit or recognize that something has occurred or is currently occurring. Drug addicts or alcoholics often deny that they have a problem, while victims of traumatic events may deny that the event ever occurred.

Denial functions to protect the ego from things that the individual cannot cope with. While this may save us from anxiety or pain, denial also requires a substantial investment of energy. Because of this, other defenses are also used to keep these unacceptable feelings from consciousness.
(Psychology, About Denial, emphasis added). At the fundamental levels of cognition in our subconscious, fear of death sponsors episodes of denial:
Humankind has, since time immemorial, struggled with the awareness and fear of mortality. Cultural anthropologist Ernest Becker, building upon—and synthesizing—the work of psychiatrists and psychologists, existential philosophers and others, conceives a pervasive self-protective system at the core of human behavior generated by individuals to buffer themselves against the terror of death. Much of personal and social behavior in this context is an attempt symbolically to validate human worth and meaning, notwithstanding the ephemeral nature of human existence. Indeed, death anxiety is conceived as a prime mover of humankind.
(Psychology of Denial, emphasis added). The history of civilization or society that Toynbee pointed out, is the observation that human society most often commits suicide.

That is, any society or culture is far, far less likely to be murdered by another culture (e.g. by war) than it is to commit suicide.

It seems to me, then, that denial is not the "defense" it is cracked up to be.

So, there is an opportunity to find better way of looking at the real problems which both individuals and civilizations face, or there isn't.

The next post in this series is here, the previous post in this series is here.

Bill Moyers on one prominent source of denial: