Daily Archives: January 14, 2022

“The Coming Coup”: Ari Berman on Republican Efforts to Steal Future Electi ons

Democracy Now! Jan 13, 2022

Mother Jones reporter Ari Berman warns the Republican Party is laying the groundwork to steal the 2022 midterms and future elections through a combination of gerrymandering, voter suppression and election subversion, that together pose a mortal threat to voting rights in the United States. Republicans, many of whom are election deniers, are campaigning for positions that hold immense oversight over the election process. “What’s really new here are these efforts to take over how votes are counted,” says Berman. “That is the ultimate voter suppression method, because if you’re not able to rig the election on the front end, you can throw out votes on that back end.”

Last Year’s Overall Climate Was Shaped by Warming-Driven Heat Extremes Around th e Globe – Inside Climate News

A quarter of the world’s population experienced a record-warm year in 2021, research shows.

By Bob Berwyn January 14, 2022

a record-warm year.

Global average temperature isn’t always the most important measure, University of Michigan climate scientist Jonathan Overpeck said, after United States federal agencies released the Global State of the Climate report, ranking 2021 as the sixth-warmest year on record for the planet.

“As with politics, it is often what happens locally that matters most, and 2021 was one of the most deadly and destructive years on record because of the unusually warm atmosphere that is becoming the norm,” he said. “Extreme heat waves were exceptional in 2021, including the deadly Pacific Northwest U.S. and Canada heatwave that killed hundreds and also set the stage for fires that wiped out a whole town.”

The year ended with a long and extreme autumn heat wave in the Western United States that contributed to Colorado’s costliest wildfire to date, and also with off-the-charts heat extremes in the European Alps, with above-freezing temperatures on the highest summits on Dec. 31.

And to reinforce that global warming doesn’t stop as the calendar year ends, 2022 started as the previous year ended, with a grain-withering heat wave in the Southern Hemisphere centered over Argentina, while farther south in Patagonia, vast tracts of forest are on fire. On Jan. 13, meteorologists reported a preliminary reading of 50.7 degrees Celsius in Australia, tying the Southern Hemisphere record.

Brimicombe said that, with last year’s heat extremes, it hit home that, “Oh dear, this has already started, it’s catching up with us, it’s here now.”

She added, ”We’re going to see more and more of this sort of extreme heat and extreme weather. It wasn’t a shock because that’s what had been projected, but a surprise, because it had always kind of crept up on us.”

Ocean Heat Peaks Again

The reports released Thursday by the National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration and NASA show that increasing greenhouse gas pollution has driven Earth’s annual average temperature above the pre-fossil fuel era by 1.04 degrees Celsius (1.87 degrees Fahrenheit), as measured by an 1880 to 1900 baseline. And the long-term rate of warming has doubled in recent decades, from an early pace of about 0.08 degrees Celsius (0.14 degrees Fahrenheit) per decade, to 0.18 degrees Celsius (0.32 degrees Fahrenheit) per decade since 1980.

Based on the most recent evaluations of greenhouse gas emissions and concentrations, especially of methane, which recently reached another record level, as well as studies of other important climate indicators, warming could speed up even more in the years ahead. By 2023, the global annual temperature could pass the 1.5 degree Celsius warming limit set by the Paris Agreement, climate scientist James Hansen wrote in his Jan. 11 monthly climate update.

A separate study, published last week, showed that, while the planet’s globally averaged surface temperature has wobbled the past six years, the world’s oceans continued to warm steadily during that time, setting a new record each year, including 2021. That matters a lot for the climate because more than 90 percent of the sun’s heat trapped by greenhouse gases is going into the oceans, said Kevin Trenberth, a distinguished scholar at the National Center for Atmospheric Research and a co-author of the study.

“The ocean is where most of it goes,” he said. “If you’re tracking that over time, we should be able to match that with measurements from satellites. That would be the best indicator of total energy imbalance for the planet.”

By another measure, that energy imbalance is growing at a rate equivalent to the energy from about five Hiroshima-sized atom bombs exploding every second of every day of every year, all captured by the oceans. Manifesting as heat, the energy melts sea ice and ice shelves, raises sea levels and supercharges tropical storms.

Rising ocean heat content is increasing the frequency and intensity of ocean heat waves that have killed huge areas of coral reefs across the world’s tropical oceans and shifted fish populations, threatening the food supplies of up to 3 billion people, mostly in developing countries in the global south.

And there is no doubt that ocean heat waves are linked with heat waves and drought over land. A 2020 study showed that heat waves and droughts starting over the ocean and moving over land are often longer lasting and more intense than purely land-born events. In another case, a team of researchers studied ecosystem details of how a 2011 ocean and land heat wave interacted over Australia.

Concerns about faster warming ahead are also heightened because warmer oceans are less able to take up carbon dioxide from the atmosphere. Currently, oceans absorb about 25 percent to 30 percent of human carbon dioxide emissions, said Lijing Cheng, lead author of the new ocean heat paper and associate professor with the International Center for Climate and Environmental Sciences at the Institute of Atmospheric Physics of the Chinese Academy of Sciences.

That leads to ocean acidification and “reduces the efficiency of oceanic carbon uptake and leaves more carbon dioxide in the air,” which traps even more heat, he said.

Cheng said the study showed that the pattern of ocean warming “is a result of human-related changes in atmospheric composition,” adding that warmer oceans create more powerful storms and hurricanes, “as well as increasing precipitation and flood risk.”

Fully understanding ocean-atmosphere heat exchange is key to implementing and tracking climate mitigation goals, he added.

Co-author Michael Mann, a climate scientist at Pennsylvania State University, said the oceans will keep warming until net carbon emissions fall to zero.

“Aside from causing coral bleaching and threatening sea life and fish populations we rely upon for roughly 25 percent of our protein intake globally,” Mann said, ocean warming “is destabilizing Antarctic ice shelves and threatens massive (meters) of sea level rise if we don’t act. So this finding really underscores the urgency of climate action now.”

Record Heat in 25 Countries

Another global annual climate summary from a team of scientists with the Berkeley Earth laboratory showed that 1.8 billion people in 25 countries—about a quarter of the world’s population—experienced a record-warm annual average in 2021.

“No one lives at the global average temperature,” said Berkeley Earth lead scientist Robert Rohde. “Most land areas will experience more warming than the global average, and countries must plan their responses to this.”

Some of the world’s most populous countries experienced their hottest years on record, including China, South Korea and Nigeria, and many of them are countries that are already very hot, including Bahrain, Iran, Kuwait, Oman, Qatar, Saudi Arabia and the United Arab Emirates in the Middle East.

Overall, the Berkeley team’s data showed that the global warming caused by greenhouse gases is broadly distributed, as expected, because the pollutants are spread through the atmosphere.

In 2021, 87 percent of Earth’s surface was significantly warmer compared to a 1951-1980 baseline, with 11 percent of the surface at a similar temperature, and only 2.6 percent significantly colder. An absence of cold extremes also illustrates the overall warming trend, as the team reported that no place on Earth recorded a record cold annual average.

A building level of greenhouse gases from human activities “is the direct cause of recent global warming,” Rohde said. “If the Paris Agreement’s goal of no more than 2 degrees Celsius warming is to be reached, significant progress toward reducing greenhouse gas emissions needs to be made soon.”

Brimicombe, who does research on extreme heat, said the spate of climate extremes in 2021 may mark a start of a widespread coming to terms with climate change.

“I think we’ve always had these rose-tinted glasses toward it, like yes, climate change is happening, but it’s not going to happen to me,” she said. “We need to take off those glasses and be realistic about what’s happening. Although part of our brain is telling us it can’t be true, it is completely in front of us. If we continue with this narrative, even like I did, that we’re surprised and shocked, it’s kind of like saying it’s not real. But it is real.”

…(read more).

“Who We Are”: New Film Chronicles History of Racism in America Amid Grow ing Attack on Voting Rights


Democracy Now!
Jan 14, 2022

As the United States heads into the Martin Luther King Day holiday weekend, attempts by Democrats to pass major new voting rights legislation appear to have stalled. We examine the new award-winning documentary “Who We Are: A Chronicle of Racism in America,” which follows civil rights attorney Jeffery Robinson as he confronts the enduring legacy of anti-Black racism in the United States, weaving together examples from the U.S. Constitution, education system and policing. “The entire purpose of this film is to ask people to take a long hard look at our actual history of white supremacy and anti-Black racism,” says Robinson, the former deputy legal director of the American Civil Liberties Union. “That is something that has been really erased from the common narrative and creation story about America.” We also speak with Emily Kunstler and Sarah Kunstler, the directors of the film.

John Nichols on How “Coronavirus Criminals & Pandemic Profiteers” Hurt World’s Res ponse to COVID-19

Democracy Now! Jan 13, 2022

We speak with The Nation’s national affairs correspondent John Nichols on the occasion of his new book, “Coronavirus Criminals and Pandemic Profiteers: Accountability for Those Who Caused the Crisis,” which takes aim at the CEOs and political figures who put profits over people during the coronavirus pandemic. The chapters cover notorious figures such as former President Trump, Mike Pompeo, Jared Kushner and Jeff Bezos. “In the United States alone, hundreds of thousands of deaths occurred that did not have to occur,” says Nichols. “Globally it’s in the millions, and the U.S. could have played a huge role in addressing that.”

Long-term global warming fuels extreme weather, analysis shows

CBC News: The National

Jan 13, 2022

A NASA analysis shows 2021 was the Earth’s sixth warmest year on record, adding to a long-term warming trend that is fueling extreme weather.

WATCH: When is it better to take a rapid antigen versus PCR test?


Jan 14 2022

The first step toward determining if you have COVID-19 is to get tested– whether is through an antigen or a PCR test. The introduction of at-home antigen (rapid) tests offer a new level of convenience, providing results in a matter of minutes. But they can sometimes be difficult to find and are described by many experts as less accurate than PCR tests. PCR tests require visiting a testing site and can take several days to get results.

In a conversation with the PBS NewsHour’s Nicole Ellis, Dr. Payal Patel, an infectious disease physician at the University of Michigan, said that while we may all be eager to know which test is best, the first test you can get your hands on is the best one to take. The priority is getting a result. “Once you have a positive result or a negative result it’s a lot easier to move forward and thinking about, you know, do I need to quarantine or not?” If you begin experiencing symptoms despite a negative test result, it may be worth getting tested again, Patel said.

INTO DUST: The Fight For Water (Based on a Real Story) | Real Stories 4k

Real StoriesPremiere in progress
When activist Perween Rahman is murdered, her sister Aquila returns to Karachi, Pakistan to investigate, and finds herself caught up in powerful forces intent on stealing the city’s water. Based on a true story, INTO DUST follows the journey of a woman who worked tirelessly to protect the water rights of Pakistan’s poor and ended up making the ultimate sacrifice.

The film is directed by Orlando von Einsiedel, the Oscar-winning director of The White Helmets and Virunga.

Arundhati Roy: Freedom, Fascism, Fiction and the Pandemic Portal


The Laura Flanders Show

Premieres Jan 16, 2022
The Laura Flanders Show
Two years ago this month, the first cases of Covid-19 were reported in the United States. “Historically, pandemics have forced humans to break with the past and imagine their world anew,” wrote acclaimed author and activist Arundhati Roy just weeks into the shutdown. So have we? Two years on, what’s changed and what hasn’t in the US, India, and globally in a world that often seems to be teetering on the brink. If our goal is a better society, a world that is sustainable, just, and free, how are we doing, and what role do writers, literature, and language itself play in helping us find our way? This time on the LF Show, we explore all of this and more with Arundhati Roy who joins us from her home in New Delhi, India. Roy is the author of The God of Small Things and The Ministry of Utmost Happiness as well as numerous essays on human rights, environmental justice, and global capitalism. This Spring, a new edition of her book of essays Azadi: Freedom. Fascism. Fiction will be out from Haymarket Books. All that and a closing commentary from Laura about American Exceptionalism and the pitfalls therein.

GUESTS
Arundhati Roy, Novelist, Writer & Political Activist, Author, Azadi: Freedom. Fascism. Fiction., My Seditious Heart & Numerous Other Essays

CREDITS
Executive Producer: Laura Flanders
Creative Director: Matt Colaciello
Communications Director: Jeremiah Cothren
Editors: Nat Needham, David Neumann
Radio & Podcast Producer: Jeannie Hopper
Co-Director Development: Dominic Marcella
Story Producer: Sabrina Artel
Motion Graphics: Nat Needham
Digital Content Creator: Leigh Friedman
Production Assistant: Ryan Hotes
Interns: Janet Hernandez

Special Thanks: Anthony Arnove

Introduction to the Digital Library

Introduction to the Digital Library

Beinecke Library at Yale

May 12, 2021

We are very excited to announce that the Yale University Library has launched a new digital collections platform for improved viewing experience. The new interface is now home to all Beinecke Library digitized images as of January 2021. Over time, other Yale Library digital collections will be moved to this platform to create an even more seamless user experience across multiple collections and repositories. Visit the library website to access the digital collections: https://beinecke.library.yale.edu/dig…

Digital Collections at the Beinecke Library | Beinecke Rare Book & Manuscript Library

The Beinecke Library has digitized more than a million images of collections material. We are very excited to announce that the Yale University Library has launched a new digital collections platform for improved viewing experience. The new interface is now home to all Beinecke Library digitized images. Over time, other Yale Library digital collections will be moved to this platform to create an even more seamless user experience across multiple collections and repositories. Use the search box below to explore digitized images from Beinecke Library collections. (For other Yale Library digital collections, begin your search here.) Watch this introductory video to learn more:

Introduction to the Digital Library

May 12, 2021

We are very excited to announce that the Yale University Library has launched a new digital collections platform for improved viewing experience. The new interface is now home to all Beinecke Library digitized images as of January 2021. Over time, other Yale Library digital collections will be moved to this platform to create an even more seamless user experience across multiple collections and repositories. Visit the library website to access the digital collections: https://beinecke.library.yale.edu/dig…