A Climate Change Disaster That Might Actually Hit Denialists Where They (And Most Of Us) Live

The tiny handed shitgibbon infesting the White House seems to “think” that folks can’t tell the difference between weather and climate:*

“Large parts of the Country are suffering from tremendous amounts of snow and near record setting cold. Amazing how big this system is. Wouldn’t be bad to have a little of that good old fashioned Global Warming right now!”

Don’t know about you but I can hear the “hurr, hurr, hurr” quite clearly.

Meanwhile, in the reality-based cosmos, new and increasingly horrific dimensions of the climate crisis are making themselves apparent with every passing week:

Applying IUCN Red List of Threatened Species criteria to all (124) wild coffee species, we undertook a gap analysis for germplasm collections and protected areas and devised a crop wild relative (CWR) priority system. We found that at least 60% of all coffee species are threatened with extinction, 45% are not held in any germplasm collection, and 28% are not known to occur in any protected area. Existing conservation measures, including those for key coffee CWRs, are inadequate. We propose that wild coffee species are extinction sensitive, especially in an era of accelerated climatic change.

Domesticated coffee cultivation in a context of changing climate, drought, changes in pest patterns etc. requires the kind of genetic variety and range of traits that the ~125 wild coffee species offer.  Those wild plants are subject to the same pressures that have created what many see as the sixth Great Extinction in the history of life on earth: loss of habitat, over exploitation, and, now, human-driven climate change.  As the abstract above notes, much of the genetic heritage of wild coffee is simply unknown: unpreserved, unstudied, and under dire threat.

Which means that while Trump smears faeces on the wall (on the faces of his supporters?) the one thing that makes facing a morning with his tweets in it seem even remotely possible is being put at risk by his and his party’s willed ignorance, stupidity, and greed.

Happy Sunday, all….

(Open Thread)

*He might not be wrong for much of his base, but more and more, it appears, this particular squib doesn’t have much impact beyond the I’ll-enjoy-the-drought-to-pwn-the-libs crowd.

Image: J.W.M. Turner, Snow Storm: Steam-Boat off a Harbour’s Mouthc. 1842.

53 replies
  1. 1
    Villago Delenda Est says:

    He is, like his cultists, a fucking idiot.

  2. 2
    The Dangerman says:

    …but I can hear the “hurr, hurr, hurr” quite clearly.

    Phonetically accurate, but that’s just him looking at Ivanka’s picture.

  3. 3
    Yarrow says:

    @The Dangerman: Speaking of Ivanka,

    When the Trump Organization sold a Manhattan penthouse in February 2017, the transaction immediately sparked controversy since the buyer, a woman named Angela Chen, runs a business peddling access to Chinese officials and allegedly has ties to Chinese military intelligence. If her goal was to cozy up to the Trumps, she appears to have gotten even closer than previously believed: It turns out the penthouse Chen purchased was not simply a random unit that Trump’s company retained when he developed the building, but the former personal residence of Jared Kushner and Ivanka Trump.

    Chen paid $15.9 million, a hefty sum considering that, only one year earlier, a virtually identical penthouse just one floor lower sold for nearly $2 million less than that. On a price-per-square-foot basis, Chen shelled out 13% more for her apartment compared with the previous year’s sale—while all other units in the building were selling for 25% less on average, a Forbes analysis finds.

    Treason Barbie has big problems coming with her relationships with China.

  4. 4
    rikyrah says:


  5. 5
    WaterGirl says:

    This didn’t get any traction is an earlier almost dead thread, and I think this one is worth posting again:

    Wow. Wonderful article up at LGM. The title is a perfect description of what we see, and the content of the article is excellent.


    short excerpt:

    Does this mean that the kids in the video are beyond redemption? In the abstract, of course not. In this particular case, I don’t know. More crucially, I don’t care, because the more salient fact is that they almost certainly won’t try. Why would they? Not only are their school and families hotbeds of the kind of racism they expressed towards Nathan Phillips, but the media has immediately rallied to offer them a way out in the form of pleading youthful ignorance. They’re being offered field trips where the people they hurled abuse at are expected to teach them what their parents and teachers failed to—or rather, didn’t even try to. What, exactly, is the motivation here for change?

  6. 6
    Bill Arnold says:

    It finally dawned on me (slow I am sometimes) that this tweet this morning by DJT (shortly after insulting Nancy Pelosi ::-):

    Nancy, I am still thinking about the State of the Union speech, there are so many options – including doing it as per your written offer (made during the Shutdown, security is no problem), and my written acceptance. While a contract is a contract, I’ll get back to you soon!— Donald J. Trump (@realDonaldTrump) January 20, 2019

    means that NP and the Democrats have something that Donald J. Trump wants really badly; a platform in the HR Chamber for a MAGA rally dignified State of the Union address. Leverage!

  7. 7
    debbie says:

    @Bill Arnold:

    What a sham to call the SOTU a contract! And what hypocrisy to even say it, considering how many contracts he broke or backed out of!

  8. 8
    Viva BrisVegas says:

    If the Turgid Tangerine wants to know where all that heat went to, he just needs to come to Australia.

    We’ve been experiencing a record breaking heatwave for a couple of weeks now.

    Is 120 F hot enough for him?

  9. 9
    Brachiator says:

    I was scanning the Internets while having a quick lunch and ran across this gem. I guess tv and movie guy Aaron Sorkin was interviewed about the new Congress and came up with these pearls of wisdom.

    “I really like the new crop of young people who were just elected to Congress,” Sorkin said during an interview with CNN’s Fareed Zakaria. Ocasio-Cortez is currently the youngest member of Congress at 29. Sorkin then added, “They now need to stop acting like young people.”

    AOC ain’t having it. She’s writing a new script for him.

    “Is Aaron Sorkin implying here that transgender rights are a distraction?” LGBTQ advocate Charlotte Clymer tweeted in response to the video of Sorkin. “Because it seems to me he’s saying that.”

    Ocasio-Cortez and Clymer had a Twitter exchange about the Sorkin clip.

    “I think there’s something deeper here: Sorkin really just wants gravitas, and he’s okay if the gravitas in our elected officials comes with troubling compromise,” Clymer wrote, replying to Ocasio-Cortez’s original tweet. She listed Ocasio-Cortez and fellow Rep. Ilhan Omar (D-Minn.), saying “we like @AOC and @Ilhan and these incoming Members because they prioritize substance over gravitas (appearance).”

    “Let’s dig into ‘gravitas,’ bc it’s an ambiguous word, selectively applied,” Ocasio-Cortez replied. “Ever wonder how expression that’s feminine, working-class, queer, or poc isn’t deemed as having ‘gravitas,’ but talking like an Aaron Sorkin character does? Men have ‘gravitas,’ women get ‘likeable.'”

    Shit getting real.

  10. 10
    WaterGirl says:

    @Brachiator: Shorter: Fuck you, Aaron Sorkin.

    I like it! (And I like Aaron Sorkin, usually, just fine.)

  11. 11
    Brachiator says:

    @Viva BrisVegas:

    We’ve been experiencing a record breaking heatwave for a couple of weeks now.

    Saw a recent news story about this. It just seemed too strange to me. Outrageous temperatures.

    Hasn’t there been drought conditions for a while?

    What is the response from the government, and from the people?

    ETA. I think I also heard a story about water shortage in South Africa. Something serious definitely appears to be happening.

  12. 12
    Jay says:

    The Disaffected Lib blog regularly writes about the impacts and changes of Global Warming.

  13. 13
    The Midnight Lurker says:

    @Viva BrisVegas: I’ve been watching news reports about what you’re dealing with ‘down under’. Unbelievable.

    God bless, Australia. And heaven help us all.

  14. 14
    Starfish says:

    Do you know about any children’s books on climate change? My 8yo is extremely worried about it, and I want something that explains what it is and maybe some things that people are working on (things to give him hope and be less afraid.)

  15. 15
    Bill Arnold says:

    This kind of news gives me hope. It’s hype (and I don’t see much comment on it), but once electric car range on a single car considerably exceeds typical range for a fossil-fueled car, a rapid shift to electrics can easily be made to happen even in the face of hostile propaganda by fossil carbon interests.
    Tiny silicon particles could power lithium ion batteries with 10 times more capacity
    Paywalled paper (researchgate link available too):
    Size and Surface Effects of Silicon Nanocrystals in Graphene Aerogel Composite Anodes for Lithium Ion Batteries (October 19, 2018)

  16. 16
    Mnemosyne says:


    Aaron Sorkin isn’t always great with female characters, to say the least, so I’m not surprised that he chose “gravitas” as his marker for taking a politician seriously. 🙄

  17. 17
    Ruckus says:

    He does think it’s a contract. One that he controls and that the other side has to agree to and that he doesn’t have to honor, just like the 3400 times he’s been sued to pay, or honor his end of the deal. IOW he wants NP to honor what he thinks the contract says and he has no intention of honoring. Primarily because he has zero honor. None. Nada. Zip.

  18. 18
  19. 19
    Steeplejack says:


    I saw it on the earlier thread, and it is an excellent piece. Highly recommended!

  20. 20
    A Ghost To Most says:

    Declare all the Gulf Coast property below 10 feet above sea level Christofascistan, build Rump’s wall around it, and put all the cretins there. I bet they start believing in AGW soon.

  21. 21
    Viva BrisVegas says:


    What is the response from the government, and from the people?

    Since we have a collection of climate denying numpties in charge right now, the response has been to say, “There’s always been droughts, it’ll rain soon, nothing to see here”.

    Millions of fish recently died, and are dying, in our major inland river system, basically due to stagnant water. Despite this, agribusiness irrigators have been allowed to dam and divert the water in upstream areas for cotton and rice growing.

    The kicker is that the previous Labor government had set up a water monitoring and buy back scheme to get water back into the river system. Once the conservatives got hold of it they turned it in to a boondoggle for their agribusiness donors. $9,000,000,000 of taxpayers money was spent and the result is a dying river system.

    There is expected to be an election in May. I only hope the country can survive the rampant corruption, cronyism and incompetence until then.

  22. 22
    Steeplejack says:


    I think he’s calling Pelosi’s “offer” about the SOTU and his “acceptance” the contract, not the SOTU itself.

    Agree with you that for Trump to bloviate about the sanctity of contracts is the height of hypocrisy.

  23. 23
    Steeplejack says:


    I have to say that I am warming to Alexandria Ocasio-Cortez more and more. We’ll see how the substance pans out, but she’s racking up style points all over. She is pwning her critics right and left.

  24. 24
    Steve in the ATL says:

    @Viva BrisVegas: rice? In Australia?! Don’t you have the absolutely wrong climate for growing rice?

  25. 25
    Mary G says:

    @Brachiator: Piers Morgan told her Aaron Sorkin knows more about politics, little lady, so STFU and listen. The ratio and replies are wonderful.

  26. 26
    Viva BrisVegas says:

    @Steve in the ATL:

    Except for water it’s probably the perfect climate. They get their rice varieties from California.

    In good years they produce more than a million tonnes of the stuff mostly for export. There haven’t been many good years lately.

    The bigger concern is the cotton growers damming the upper reaches of the Darling river system.

  27. 27
    Achrachno says:

    @Steve in the ATL: California is a leading rice production state in the US — warm climate and water for irrigation is about all you need.

  28. 28
    Jay says:

    @Steve in the ATL:

    You need heat, and water. They don’t grow a lot of rice in Austrailia, it’s region specific, and it’s highly profitable.

  29. 29
    Mary G says:

    @Mary G: Whoops, Piers didn’t call AOC “little lady,” my bad:

    News Flash: Aaron Sorkin knows a lot more about politics than you. So I suggest you take his advice, young lady, & start acting like a grown-up not a juvenile smart-a**e. https://t.co/Tl6ya5TvkM— Piers Morgan (@piersmorgan) January 20, 2019

  30. 30
    Steeplejack says:

    @Mary G:

    Glad you cleared that up. LOL. Otherwise I would have thought Piers Morgan is a complete ass.

  31. 31
    Steve in the ATL says:

    @Viva BrisVegas: @Achrachno: @Jay: right, but growing rice takes a ton of water, doesn’t it? Which is why it grows great in places such as Vietnam and shouldn’t be grown in places such as Australia, California, and Texas.

  32. 32
    MagdaInBlack says:

    @Mary G:
    Oh! This is not going to be pretty.
    Can’t wait 😊

  33. 33
    Achrachno says:

    @Viva BrisVegas: We had comparable temperatures in S CA last summer, but the idiot has obviously forgotten or never knew — got to118° F where I live — inland but not desert.

  34. 34
    Jay says:

    @Steve in the ATL:

    There are areas in Australia with huge amounts of water. Thus the salties everywhere.

    The problem is cyclical droughts, stakeholders competing for water, and the need to keep water in the river, to you know, have a river. Like most dry ag areas from the Thompson Oakanogan, the Central Valley, Australian ag see’s any water headed to the sea as wasted water.

  35. 35
    chopper says:

    @Bill Arnold:

    did donald fucking trump just say “a contract is a contract”? the actual donald trump. that guy. he said that?

  36. 36
    Achrachno says:

    @Steve in the ATL: Yes, but CA is a leading cotton producer as well (another heavy drinker) and it does better here than in the SE — them cotton bolls don’t get rotten so you can pick plenty of cotton, because there’s no summer rain. Agricultural economics is multifactored & weird.

  37. 37
    Jay says:

    @Steve in the ATL:

    BTW, you don’t really need a “ton” of water, compared to many other crops like tomatoes, you just need a shallow “pond” impoundment for 3/4’s of the growing cycle, then either a dry season, or the ability to drain the pond, to allow the rice to “finish” and be harvested.

    Part of the problem in Oz is that “sterile” fossil water from the river systems are used to flood the fields, and fertilized/pesticide brackish water is returned to the river system, with huge biological/ecosystem impacts like algae blooms.

  38. 38
    WaterGirl says:

    @Steeplejack: Great. The more people who read that the better. I thought the headline was succinct and the perfectly worded.

  39. 39
    Jay says:


    Doesn’t matter because Needy Admin said it. It’s as worthless as any of the rest of his word salad and as meaningless.

  40. 40
    chopper says:


    right. the reason rice is grown in flooded paddies is because rice doesn’t mind wet feet but the weeds do. so it’s easy.

    rice can be grown without flooding. it’s just that in traditional rice growing areas there’s plenty of water around during rice growing season. at least historically.

  41. 41

    Although I shouldn’t bring party into this at all, I know, one thing that bugs me is that when a political party is wrong about something – horribly wrong in an historically significant way – they end up leaving office and the next guy gets in there and says, “What? That wasn’t me!” in just the same way Trump can disregard Bush 2’s shockingly horrendous foreign policy legacy.

    Someday, a Republican will be in office who has no choice but to acknowledge that climate change is happening and that we didn’t do enough about it early enough, and he (it’s always going to be a he, isn’t it?) will say, “What? That wasn’t me! I don’t have anything to do with Donald trump.”

  42. 42
    Jay says:


    And Oz is ancient. It’s the oldest chunk of earth still around. As a result, except for the moist areas that grew forests and topsoil, huge areas of Oz had all the nutrients leached out by the water/erosion cycle millions of years ago. As a result much of the ecosystem evolved and adapted to the low nutrients in the soil, the river systems, even the offshore reef systems and estuaries.

    So, in a lot of Oz, overfertilization is needed, flood irrigation creates saltification and when the water returns to the water cycle, it kills the rivers, estuaries and reefs.

  43. 43
    Brachiator says:

    @Mary G:

    Piers Morgan told her Aaron Sorkin knows more about politics, little lady, so STFU and listen. The ratio and replies are wonderful.

    Apart from the “young lady” stuff, can someone remind me where Sorkin got elected to public office?

  44. 44
  45. 45
    Jay says:


    He wrote West Wing, that makes him an experienced savvy politician in many ‘merkin eyes,

    Just like Your Fired Needy Admin played a successful billionaire on TV.

  46. 46
    Bill Arnold says:

    @Viva BrisVegas:

    Is 120 F hot enough for him?

    No, it is not hot enough for him.

  47. 47
    Bill Arnold says:


    did donald fucking trump just say “a contract is a contract”?

    Somebody with full access to his twitter account did, and it’s goofy enough to be him.
    Anyway, we can presume that NP reads that as “a contract is something to be renegotiated”, while laughing about there being no actual contract.

  48. 48
  49. 49
    Bill Arnold says:

    Long Reuters article about solar/wind in Australia. They’re working through the problems at a decent pace.
    Australia’s solar, wind boom to power past grid woes in 2019

    And in China,
    China’s State Grid Corp Crushes Power Transmission Records – State Grid’s 1.1 million volt DC line pushes power from Xinjiang to eastern megacities over 3000 kilometers to the east
    For context, that means solar/wind power could be transmitted long distances.

  50. 50
    Mnemosyne says:


    I’m guessing that CA mostly grows Pima cotton, which was specifically bred from Egyptian cotton to use less water than what they grow in the southeast US.

    “Pima” refers to the American Indian tribe primarily based in Arizona who (IIRC) developed the strain so they could grow cotton under local central Arizona conditions.

  51. 51
    Ohio Mom says:

    I can’t bear to think of living without coffee. Even as a small child, I craved the stuff. I hope someone starts working on this.

  52. 52
    Mainmata says:

    Coffee requires pollination. With rapid deforestation, the habitats that nurture coffee pollinators (a very large number of insects, not just bees) is being destroyed so no pollination and your coffee goes away. This is true for so many crops. Higher nightime temperatures inhibit the development of rice kernels. And we could go on and on. The world’s food supply is at risk not just rising sea levels and hurricanes

  53. 53
    Hunter says:

    I spend as lot of time at the Field Museum in Chicago, which has a pretty interesting exhibit, “Evolving Planet”. It’s basically the history of life on earth. Periodically the exhibit is punctuated with a station on one of the five Great Extinctions, showing what percentage of species were wiped out and probable causes. In every case, climate change is involved, whether triggered by volcanic activity or the position of the continents (such as a continent moving over one of the poles, which causes lower temperatures and sinking sea levels from the creation of ice caps).

    And at the end of the exhibition is a station about the Sixth Great Extinction: now.

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