Monday, December 03, 2007

Global Snowing

Two nasty storms, one bound for the Northeast, the other for the Northwest, will intensify overnight.

The northeastern storm will strengthen rapidly over the next 24 hours. Sleet and freezing rain will increase in coverage and intensity from south-central New York and north-central Pennsylvania to southern New England. Snow will spread from eastern New York into Vermont, New Hampshire, and most of southern New England, turning quite heavy Monday.

In the Pacific, an unusually large and rapidly intensifying storm south of the Aleutian Islands will hurl hurricane-force winds and 40-foot seas toward the Oregon coast. Conditions will be at their worst--and most dangerous--through the afternoon.

Snow levels are on the rise as the storm center itself barrels toward the Queen Charlotte Islands, but in the meantime, winter storm warnings remain posted from the Cascades eastward to the mountains of Idaho and western Montana.

More details on these storms will be available in the National Forecast.


We bit of snowfall around the country, of course it IS winter and that is supposed to happen, along with freezing rain and generally inclement weather.

Of course this does not mean we are warming as one would think, but a trend toward more fierce storms further apart causing record breaking statistics.

This summer we will be begging for some of this cold stuff but will only roast in the blazing Sun instead. So grab your sleds, ski's and snow boards and head for the hills. Cardboard boxes of substantial size worked for us when we were kids sliding down the local hills.

Enjoy it while it lasts.


DEN said...

Due to the inclement conditions, coffee and cocoa will be in the corner and energy bars on the side until further notice.

Dig in and then go dig out!


Micki said...

So grab your sleds, ski's and snow boards and head for the hills.

I must curb my insatiable desire to keep up with the criminal activities of the bu$h regime, because things get stuck in my subconscious

Yesterday, I was at the market and as the checker was scanning my order and making small talk, yakking about the snow levels, his skiing, etc., I asked him, "Do you waterboard, too?"

He looked at me like I was nuts -- then laughed.

Micki said...

Contact the FCC and Congress about Martin's rush to change the rules.


If we think reporting is remiss now, imagine what it'll be like with even more consolidation of media and cross-ownership.

Micki said...


U.S. Says Iran Ended Nuclear Arms Work

A new assessment by American intelligence agencies concludes that Iran halted its nuclear weapons program in 2003 and that the program remains on hold, contradicting a previous
intelligence report.

From ABC News

Micki said...

Hmmm...looks like the bushevikian warmongers may have changed their *minds* about the advisability of starting another war...

December 3, 2007
White House Reaction to Iran Report

Here is the text of a statement issued today by Stephen Hadley, President Bush’s national security adviser, concerning the new National Intelligence Estimate on Iran’s nuclear weapons program. The intelligence estimate says that, contrary to previous assessments, Iran halted the program in 2003 in response to international pressure and has probably not restarted it since then, though it has the capacity to do so.

Today’s National Intelligence Estimate offers some positive news. It confirms that we were right to be worried about Iran seeking to develop nuclear weapons. It tells us that we have made progress in trying to ensure that this does not happen.

But the intelligence also tells us that the risk of Iran acquiring a nuclear weapon remains a very serious problem. The estimate offers grounds for hope that the problem can be solved diplomatically — without the use of force — as the Administration has been trying to do. And it suggests that the President has the right strategy: intensified international pressure along with a willingness to negotiate a solution that serves Iranian interests while ensuring that the world will never have to face a nuclear armed Iran.

The bottom line is this: for that strategy to succeed, the international community has to turn up the pressure on Iran — with diplomatic isolation, United Nations sanctions, and with other financial pressure — and Iran has to decide it wants to negotiate a solution.

Micki said...

...or they are just faking it and plan to start the war once the international community and the United Nations doesn't do what it's TOLD to do. Chop, chop.

Micki said...

U.S. says Iran has halted nuclear arms work

DEN said...

Hot from the NYT:

Innovating Our Way to Financial Crisis

The financial crisis that began late last summer, then took a brief vacation in September and October, is back with a vengeance.

How bad is it? Well, I’ve never seen financial insiders this spooked — not even during the Asian crisis of 1997-98, when economic dominoes seemed to be falling all around the world.

This time, market players seem truly horrified — because they’ve suddenly realized that they don’t understand the complex financial system they created.

Before I get to that, however, let’s talk about what’s happening right now.

Credit — lending between market players — is to the financial markets what motor oil is to car engines. The ability to raise cash on short notice, which is what people mean when they talk about “liquidity,” is an essential lubricant for the markets, and for the economy as a whole.

But liquidity has been drying up. Some credit markets have effectively closed up shop. Interest rates in other markets — like the London market, in which banks lend to each other — have risen even as interest rates on U.S. government debt, which is still considered safe, have plunged.

“What we are witnessing,” says Bill Gross of the bond manager Pimco, “is essentially the breakdown of our modern-day banking system, a complex of leveraged lending so hard to understand that Federal Reserve Chairman Ben Bernanke required a face-to-face refresher course from hedge fund managers in mid-August.”

The freezing up of the financial markets will, if it goes on much longer, lead to a severe reduction in overall lending, causing business investment to go the way of home construction — and that will mean a recession, possibly a nasty one.

Behind the disappearance of liquidity lies a collapse of trust: market players don’t want to lend to each other, because they’re not sure they’ll be repaid.

In a direct sense, this collapse of trust has been caused by the bursting of the housing bubble. The run-up of home prices made even less sense than the dot-com bubble — I mean, there wasn’t even a glamorous new technology to justify claims that old rules no longer applied — but somehow financial markets accepted crazy home prices as the new normal. And when the bubble burst, a lot of investments that were labeled AAA turned out to be junk.

Thus, “super-senior” claims against subprime mortgages — that is, investments that have first dibs on whatever mortgage payments borrowers make, and were therefore supposed to pay off in full even if a sizable fraction of these borrowers defaulted on their debts — have lost a third of their market value since July.

But what has really undermined trust is the fact that nobody knows where the financial toxic waste is buried. Citigroup wasn’t supposed to have tens of billions of dollars in subprime exposure; it did. Florida’s Local Government Investment Pool, which acts as a bank for the state’s school districts, was supposed to be risk-free; it wasn’t (and now schools don’t have the money to pay teachers).

How did things get so opaque? The answer is “financial innovation” — two words that should, from now on, strike fear into investors’ hearts.

O.K., to be fair, some kinds of financial innovation are good. I don’t want to go back to the days when checking accounts didn’t pay interest and you couldn’t withdraw cash on weekends.

But the innovations of recent years — the alphabet soup of C.D.O.’s and S.I.V.’s, R.M.B.S. and A.B.C.P. — were sold on false pretenses. They were promoted as ways to spread risk, making investment safer. What they did instead — aside from making their creators a lot of money, which they didn’t have to repay when it all went bust — was to spread confusion, luring investors into taking on more risk than they realized.

Why was this allowed to happen? At a deep level, I believe that the problem was ideological: policy makers, committed to the view that the market is always right, simply ignored the warning signs. We know, in particular, that Alan Greenspan brushed aside warnings from Edward Gramlich, who was a member of the Federal Reserve Board, about a potential subprime crisis.

And free-market orthodoxy dies hard. Just a few weeks ago Henry Paulson, the Treasury secretary, admitted to Fortune magazine that financial innovation got ahead of regulation — but added, “I don’t think we’d want it the other way around.” Is that your final answer, Mr. Secretary?

Now, Mr. Paulson’s new proposal to help borrowers renegotiate their mortgage payments and avoid foreclosure sounds in principle like a good idea (although we have yet to hear any details). Realistically, however, it won’t make more than a small dent in the subprime problem.

The bottom line is that policy makers left the financial industry free to innovate — and what it did was to innovate itself, and the rest of us, into a big, nasty mess.

carey said...

Yeah, yeah! What the you-know-what? Suddenly Bushco is acting nicey nice to Iran. The press release of this is "breaking" so it had some fanfare behing it from the White House.

I'm sure you've noticed that things have been lighter with Iran, some good things being said by Bushco trickling out on purpose.

Dollars to donuts, it's a plan to get around us and go into Iran. Cheney wants it. 'Nuff said.

I have to rush out again.

Micki said...

Yeah, Carey, anything from the busheviks that has a "positive" included comes with a smelly rat attached. I smell a rat...

REESE ERLICH, who is an author and a foreign correspondent for The Baltimore Sun, claims this about the NIE report that was released today:

"The NIE released today has been suppressed by the Bush Administration since February. It clearly indicates that the White House, and Vice President Cheney in particular, have been lying about the nuclear threat from Iran as part of a conscious effort to whip up public support for bombing Iran. But the 'realist' wing of the White House seems to be prevailing for the moment. The official press release emphasizes negotiations, not bombing.

"Yet the U.S. continues its covert war against Iran, using Kurdish and other minority group organizations to blow up buildings, kill soldiers and civilians. All factions in the White House continue to seek the overthrow of the Iranian government, in complete violation of international law and the 1981 Algiers Accords signed by the U.S. and Iran, which prohibit political or military interference in the internal affairs of Iran."

carey said...

Just checking back before I head out. There you go, Micki. Of course, something's always rotten in the state of Bush/Cheney-ville.

David B. Benson said...

Meteorologists shape fashion trends

Target spokesman says they sell "very, very little wool."

Maybe related, the sheep farmers of Patagonia are slowly going out of business...

DEN said...

Sheesh, what will it take to boot the chimpy cabal?

Pants on fire!!!

Sat on the NIE till now??

BFLL's (Big Fat Lying Losers)

Hajji said...

Don't toss your woolies out yet, kids!

Remember wool is one of the few natural, sustainable fibres that can be fashioned into clothing that continues to insulate when wet.

Synthetics rely heavily on on fossil fuels and petroleum distillates in their manufacture.

As temps rise, so will the oceans. The additional atmospheric moisture is sure to result in heavier rainfall. (AND snow, in the northern climes)

Good, solid, sustainable wool innergarments will always have a place in MY drawers!


Micki said...

Patagonia Fortunes Fade in Cloud of Volcanic Ash -- NYT -- MArch 19, 1994

A look back in in time.

Micki said...

Well, the Target "climate team" fashion mavens would be doing a land-office business selling slickers and boots today in the PNW!

DEN said...

I'll turn out the lights.

Back in the AM with the blog that rocks!


Gerald said...

Why I Cry and Why I Puke?

Dear Posters:

Today, December 3, 2007, I learned that Hitler Bush knew for sometime that Iran did not have nuclear weapons. In fact Iran stopped any interest in acquiring nuclear weapons as far back as 2003. Yet, Nazi Israel kept prodding Nazi America and Hitler Bush to bomb and possibly nuke Iran. Personally, I believe that Nazi America will bomb Iran because Nazi Israel has ways of instigating unrest in the Middle East and Nazi Israel wants Iran bombed.

Hitler Bush lied to us into a war with Iraq and he was still willing to lie to us into a war with Iran. Please reflect on Hitler Bush and his mad man’s policies that create chaos, mayhem, death, and destruction. Please think of all the misery, pain, and suffering he has unleashed upon the earth through his lies. And, please take the time to study Hitler Bush’s mass murders and war crimes against humanity and you will have the answer to why I cry and why I puke.

Hitler Bush is a demented, a deranged, and a diabolical murderer. He reveals a total indifference toward his murdering of human beings.


Gerald said...

What are our voices for?

Gerald said...

And you will have to sleep in the sin your silence has nurtured.

"The final word belongs to grace. Grace enables and empowers us to change. The good news is that no matter what the propagators of hatred and fear may tell us, we can reject the sin of torture and so can they. We can just say no. There remains time for the amendment of our national character. By grace we can affirm the sanctity of each human life. By grace we can refuse to live under the illusionary comfort of security that is conceived in cruelty and born of brutality. By grace we may live moral and upright lives." - Ben Daniel

Wake from sin and speak. It is the only true security.

Gerald said...

Inner Decay

Gerald said...

"Dying empires cling until the very end to the outward trappings of power. They mask their weakness behind a costly and technologically advanced military. They pursue increasingly unrealistic imperial ambitions. They stifle dissent with efficient and often ruthless mechanisms of control. They lose the capacity for empathy, which allows them to see themselves through the eyes of others, to create a world of accommodation rather than strife. The creeds and noble ideals of the nation become empty cliches, used to justify acts of greater plunder, corruption and violence. By the end, there is only a raw lust for power and few willing to confront it." - Chris Hedges, "America in the Time of Empire"

Gerald said...

The loss of capacity for empathy means that we can no longer see ourselves as others see us. That sense which once allowed us to see from another perspective than that of our selfish interests has now been subtracted from the sum of our humanity. This engenders an elemental blindness that makes effective decision-making impossible. The obsessive focus on ourselves and our interests unleashed by 9/11 has isolated us with the cage of our own national ego, poking out the eyes of our soul, adrift in the void where we have lost faith in everything but military might. The search for perfect safety is the search for perfect hell.