Saturday, January 27, 2007

Life Imitates Bad Science Fiction

Fallen Angels is sci-fi book with an interesting premise and multiple references to Wisconsin. So it had enough going on to get my interest. Unfortunately, the character development is so childish that I could never finish the book. The premise can be summed up in these two sentences from an Amazon review:

The Earth is slipping into a new Ice Age, even while zealous Greens and "Eco-Fascists" put a stop to any technology that might lead to global warming. There's only one group to whom Alex can turn, one group still attached to the ideas of progress and science - Sci-Fi fans!

Two recent reports fall in line with precursers to the novel. First I see the efforts to silence any distent to the global warming orthodoxy, and then Cambridge astrophysicist Nigel Weiss writes:
Typically, sunspots flare up and settle down in cycles of about 11 years. In the last 50 years, we haven't been living in typical times: "If you look back into the sun's past, you find that we live in a period of abnormally high solar activity," Dr. Weiss states.These hyperactive periods do not last long, "perhaps 50 to 100 years, then you get a crash," says Dr. Weiss. 'It's a boom-bust system, and I would expect a crash soon." In addition to the 11-year cycle, sunspots almost entirely "crash," or die out, every 200 years or so as solar activity diminishes. When the crash occurs, the Earth can cool dramatically. Dr. Weiss knows because these phenomenon, known as "Grand minima," have recurred over the past 10,000 years, if not longer.
The Fallen Angels authors may be prophets. I'm not a betting man, but in the Man-Made Global Warming vs. Solar Cooling Super Bowl, I take the Sun minus the 7 points.
Althouse Spotting

I saw Ann crossing Gorham Street at State this afternoon.

Another brush with greatness. I am not worthy.

My Bacon number is 3.

Sunday, January 14, 2007

This is not the Salivator

I have not named this classic, but I spent a lot of time to clean the rust and paint my smoker. My WSM was last used to smoke Canadian style peameal bacon. But that's another blog post.

Saturday, January 13, 2007

100 Hour Update

Hours worked through close of business on 1/12/07.

Headless Blogger - 88 hours

U.S. House of Representatives - 23.4 hours

Where do I sign up for a 12 hour work week?

Friday, January 12, 2007

100 Hour Countdown

The clock is ticking for House Democrats, but it's hard to tell what time it is. House Speaker Nancy Pelosi, D-Calif., was touting a plan to push six bills through a Democratic House in 100 hours or less as early as June of last year. She's reached the halfway point — in fewer than 20 hours, according to her count.

But just as the official clock for a basketball or football game stops for time-outs and commercial breaks, Democrats aren't counting the minutes spent on business unrelated to those six designated bills.

Let's keep score, time worked in 2007 (through 1/11/07):

Headless Blogger - 80.0 hours

U.S. House of Representatives - 17.8 hours

Tuesday, January 09, 2007

What is that smell?

Three losses for 3 conference teams is a big deal. It could be decades until we see it again.
Periodic Random Food Image

My wife has a thing for pancakes and waffles. That's a good thing, except for the waffle irons stored all over the house. Fresh berries were the excuse this time.

Thursday, January 04, 2007

Paper Proves Local Cooling in Milwaukee

Jesse Garza sets out in today's MJS to show that this winter is exceptionally warm, backing up anecdotal information with historical weather records. It couldn't just be normal temperature variations - global warming, you know.

When the temperature in Milwaukee plunged to 6 degrees above zero Dec. 8, few people might have considered the possibility that last month would be memorable for its unusual warmth.

But when the mercury shot up to 40 degrees two days later it began a 25-day streak of above-normal temperatures that helped make for the 14th warmest December on record in Milwaukee.

And Wednesday's high temperature of 49 degrees marked the 26th consecutive day in the city with a temperature of 32 degrees or higher, five days shy of the previous winter record for an at-or-above-freezing streak.

Fourteenth warmest, now that is quite a standard. With over 13 decades of weather data, what are the chances that two years within one decade would be in the list of the 14 warmest Decembers? Quite high, actually.

The problem with the article is that it includes the data for those 14 sweltering Decembers. When the numbers are plotted, the curious truth emerges. The trend (see graph) from over 129 years of weather records is towards a cooler highest average temperature for December. The average is actually 2.4 degrees of cooling per century.

Geez-oh-man. To think that Al Gore is sweating a temperature rise of only a fraction of a degree per century.

The Journal-Sentinel has shown that Milwaukee is at the start of another ice age. Please burn some hydrocarbons to help reverse this trend. A little global warming couldn't hurt.

UPDATE: Thanks to Dad29 for linking here, but I feel the need to clarify his statement about what I have proven. The only claims I make are:

  1. The weather this year is not exceptional. It is just another warm winter in our not very long historical record; and
  2. This record can be easily manipulated if the analyst is biased.

Monday, January 01, 2007

The Badgers fulfill their part of the deal

Wisconsin 17, Arkansas 14

Unfortunately, Michigan couldn't, so no Big 10 dominance this year.

It is now up to OSU to make this the first three loss Big 3 since 1971. A Buckeye win will also set a record for total wins by three teams from a single conference.

The Big Ten still has a chance to record a historically exceptional year.