Fauci leads: Trump flails

From Michael Spector in The New Yorker, How Anthony Fauci became America’s Doctor, three weeks ago today: “Just before midnight on March 22nd, the President of the United States prepared to tweet. Millions of Americans, in the hope of safeguarding their health and fighting the rapidly escalating spread of covid-19, had already begun to follow theContinue reading “Fauci leads: Trump flails”

“Hello, Walls” — the song of the pandemic

Willie Nelson’s first-ever hit, now a classic country song. Performed here by Willie himself on Colbert, with his sons Micah and Lukas. Finale slightly rewritten for the moment: We got to all stick together Or else we’ll lose our minds I got a feeling — we’re going to be here A long long time.

The Grim Reaper on the Florida beach

Inspired apparently by a 2017 anti-drowning public health campaign in New Zealand, an attorney and comic in Florida has launched a campaign for social distancing on Florida beaches. The particular and phenomenal work of living art above comes from the New Zealand campaign, but the similarly themed Grim Reaper tour is on now in Florida,Continue reading “The Grim Reaper on the Florida beach”

“Living in the future now”: science fiction vs. reality

“Our point of departure was, we’re at an inflection point. The future isn’t some place ahead of us; we’re living in the future at this moment.” So said Tim Sexton, describing the process of writing the 2006 movie Children of Men with director Alfonso Cuaron, explaining the harsh realism of tone that Cuaron went for.Continue reading ““Living in the future now”: science fiction vs. reality”

“We’re living in the future”: rainfall variability

The Ojai Valley News encouraged me while at a scientific conference in San Francisco last December to pursue a story about rainfall variability in Ojai and Southern California: here it begins. “Last month was one of the driest Februaries ever in the recorded history of Southern California, according to the National Weather Service, with one-tenthContinue reading ““We’re living in the future”: rainfall variability”

Going to Extremes in 2020

Is it a coincidence that as the climate in which we live is thrown out of balance — becoming increasingly unpredictable and extreme — that by freakishly bad luck we happen to elect the most unpredictable and extreme president in memory? This is what dystopia really looks like to me: a government completely unable toContinue reading “Going to Extremes in 2020”

Climate suicide in Australia: Chernobyl for government?

The horror of the bushfires enveloping the coasts of Australia brings very bad memories back to those of us who survived similar (I imagine) wildfires in Southern California. The orange skies — “blood red” in New South Wales — the vaporized houses, with the roofs flat on the ground, the animal carcasses, the grim expressionsContinue reading “Climate suicide in Australia: Chernobyl for government?”