Wednesday, June 29, 2011

"Green is the new Red" says Mark Meckler in surprise appearance at local Tea Party meeting

Updated July 4.
Last night's Nevada County Tea Party meeting was an event not to be missed; speaking were NCTPP head Stan Meckler, Sixteen-to-One mine head Mike Miller, Dan Logue representative/ "political wet work" veteran Cliff Wagner, and in a surprise appearance, the Tea Party Patriots' Mark Meckler with an impassioned "Green is the new Red" talk in which he equated sustainability with tyranny.

Friday, June 17, 2011

Wally Herger campaign manager is ButtePIC's interim executive director (and before that, board member)

Butte County Private Industry Council interim executive director John Peace was Representative (2nd District) Wally Herger's campaign manager, according to a photo caption from 2006 and a Redding Record Searchlight story in 2008.

Peace is also Executive Director of the Oroville Economic Development Corporation and a member of NorTEC.

But to address the obvious query, Peace indicated his ButtePIC positions did not result in Herger exerting influence there: in response to my emailed Q "Did Herger, or anyone acting at his behest or on his behalf, cause monies to be brought into ButtePIC, or have influence on who received funding?", Peace replied, "Absolutely not."

The ButtePIC imploded earlier this year, under its previous head.

Peace declined to answer more questions about ButtePIC finances, pending completion of an audit (by Tenney & Co. of Marysville/Yuba City); but according to NorTEC assistant director Michael Cross, this audit (projected to be complete somewhere around the end of July) is only addressing Workforce Investment Act funds. (Cross also said Butte County is doing a separate audit, of how their county funds were spent.)

There's also a bankruptcy filing in the works; I've emailed Peace asking when it's expected to be filed.

*I believe Peace has been a ButtePIC board member for some years (he was in 2010), but am not certain when he joined; to my knowledge, the composition of the ButtePIC board was never posted online.

Thurs June 30 update: I'm having trouble finding out from Mr. Peace what the other funding streams were, that came through ButtePIC into Nevada County projects, and I haven't gotten a response about the bankruptcy filing details either.

The Conversation [with experts, after death threats] - Clearing Up the Climate Debate

It's about time...a series from Australia, on Clearing Up the Climate Debate
(the death threats largely came from the U.S., unsurprisingly; when will our society grow up?)

Sunday, June 12, 2011

Links to SacBee on NevCo "hard money", "culture of fraud"

June 5, Nevada County DA took 'hard money' loan favors
("Nevada County's hard money losses were particularly severe due to a deeply rooted culture of fraud, according to investors, convicted brokers and public records.")

June 6, 'Hard money' lending has sordid past in Nevada County
("Since 1991, four Nevada County brokers have gone to prison, four others have lost their licenses, and four borrowers have been either charged with or convicted of bilking investors. ... Hard money brokers operate under a weak, loosely monitored set of regulations riddled with loopholes and jurisdictional confusion and conflicts. ")

June 7, Editorial: Nevada County district attorney needs to resign

Wednesday, June 08, 2011

Global weirding in Calif., from Sat SacBee

"Expect the unexpected"; Researcher says climate change may be cooling California
""It's what I call global weirding," said Bill Patzert, a climatologist at NASA's Jet Propulsion Laboratory in Pasadena. "This has been a very strange year all over the planet."

What's going on?

First of all, this spring's weather is not unprecedented, just uncommon. California has had wet, cold spring weather before, notably in 1983, a year that produced record Sierra snows.

This year, the blame falls on a complex interaction between La NiƱa and another phenomenon called a negative Arctic oscillation, Patzert and others said.
One theory gaining traction is that climate change, in fact, may be to blame.

The theory was developed in several published papers by Judah Cohen, an atmospheric scientist in Massachusetts.

Cohen argues that ice melt in the Arctic has produced more snowfall across Siberia. All that snow creates a giant cold air mass that diverts the jet stream, contributing to the negative Arctic oscillation.
Colder and snowier winters caused by global warming? It may be one of the counterintuitive consequences of climate change, he said.

"We don't understand everything, and we don't understand how the different feedbacks affect different parts of the climate system," said Cohen, director of seasonal forecasting at Atmospheric and Environmental Research, a private firm in Lexington, Mass. "It's very complicated. So we should expect the unexpected."

Friday, June 03, 2011

Audubon meeting: Wind energy and effects on wildlife

Our local Audubon Society's meeting last night featured a talk examining wind energy's detrimental effects on wildlife - specifically, on bats and birds.

At one point the speaker showed this image:
[Big print]Caution: this sign has sharp edges; do not touch...
(fine print: "Also, the bridge is out ahead")

...which seemed apropos since the talk didn't address the prospect of any effects on wildlife from this:

projected temp. increases, 2000-2100