Weatherdem's Weblog

Bridging climate science, citizens, and policy

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When Religious Fanatics Impact Business Fanatics

Normally, the corporate-wings of the American political parties largely control what the parties do.  There are times, however, when the boogie-men of the religious fanatics reach out and tell the business-types what to do.  Such is the case with Creation, a film about the life of Charles Darwin, that no distributor in the United States wants to touch.

Oooh, see how scary that is?  A film about the life of Charles Darwin is too problematic for a business to distribute to American theatres.  Very little about his theories make it into the film; just the things he experienced in life, of which his research was only part.  Indeed, one of the most impressive things about Mr. Darwin was his realization of what his work would mean – far outside the scientific circles for which he directed his research.

This country is so ridiculously, purposefully closed-minded about scientific facts and implications that it is truly frightening at times.  It seems counterproductive to me that there are those in this country who would rather keep Americans ignorant of discovery and deeper meanings behind discoveries than continue progressing forward in an increasingly scientifically and technologically demanding world.  This country cannot be the greatest on the planet if they have their way.

[h/t Ethan]


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Sweet Modeling Video

I found a very nicely put together short video that shows some of the parameters considered in general climate models. Go to the following blog:

Ice Blog

It’s in French, so look for the term “ici” in parentheses. It’s a link that will allow you to download the video (36.4MB). Play it in your favorite software and enjoy the show!


Good Chase Day

Today looks like a good setup to go storm chasing. A big surface low continues to spin up in eastern Colorado, the upper level trough is still off to the west and pulses of energy are going to rotate around it for a while. Surface dewpoints and low level moisture are prevalent (for Colorado standards, anyway).

If I end up going and catching anything cool on camera, I’ll be sure to share it. No blogging for the rest of the day, though. 😦

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Quick Hits 5/1/08

Via a friend, this is nerdtastic.

Related to yesterday’s Heartland Institute post, another right-wing organization is paying children to “debunk” global warming. There is no “debate”, flat-earthers.

Hmm, look at this: the Rockefellers are pushing ExxonMobil to focus less on quarterly profits (only $11 billion in the last quarter) and more on cleaner energy. Yeah, that’d be nice.

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Random Pieces 3/25/08

The Denver Post issued a second editorial regarding the cut in funding for the science building at Auraria in Denver. They even correctly identify the real culprit behind Colorado’s budget woes: “Of course, the larger issue at work is the current tangle of constitutional spending restrictions that make the state budgetary process a convoluted exercise. This is another example of how worthy projects get shoved aside when revenues are projected to dip and mandated spending rules make a mockery of representational government.”


I’m not really into college basketball. College hockey? That’s a different matter. DU, CC and Air Force all made it to the NCAA tournament. The bracket. The action moves to the Pepsi Center in Denver on April 10th and 12th for the Frozen Four.

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Two good movies

I watched two movies last week that I would recommend:

I Am Legend – Will Smith is a pretty good actor. This film does an okay job of portraying what might happen if humans were to ‘disappear’. I recently finished reading “The World Without Us” by Alan Weisman. He spent some time talking to a number of experts about this very subject. Not to be too picky, but there were a few things that weren’t taken into account in the movie. Overall though, the movie was good. It moved at a decent pace: not too fast nor too slow. Having heard it was a remake of an earlier film, I’ll have to do some searching and watch the older version – with Charlton Heston!!

The Golden Compass – good fantasy flick. It followed along fairly predictable plot lines. There were elements of numerous other fantasy films, but at this point, it’s hard to come up with something new, right? Anyway, it has an impressive list of cast members. One of my favorites was Sam Elliott. His role as an old western-dressed gun-slinger fits him perfectly. He certainly added an element of levity to the film. I know there was discussion about the book pushing for atheism and the film not including that aspect. I want to read the books and watch the next two films to see how that plays out. I can’t imagine folks actually have that much faith in their own belief system if they think a movie will brainwash viewers. I just wish they’d stop telling the rest of us how to live our lives.

Both films contained CGI, of course. The Golden Compass probably included more of it, but I think it made sense. What was nice was neither movie went overboard using it. It added flavor and some dimensionality that would have been much more difficult to effect using real-world props and such.