Welcome to Thomas F. Lettington's
Personal Corner of the World Wide Web
Now being maintained on my new iMac (Retina 5K, 27-inch, 2019) with two Thunderbolt 27" displays. Software is macOS Monterey (Version 12.1) and Coda Content Management Software by Panic Inc. (Version 2.7.7).
It ain't what you don't know that gets you in trouble. It's what you know for sure that just ain't so. Mark Twain
Reading is to the mind what exercise is to the body. Richard Steele
Reading gives us some place to go when we have to stay where we are. Mason Cooley
Outside of a dog a book is man's best friend. Inside of a dog it's too dark to read. Groucho Marx
The more you read, the more things you will know. The more you learn, the more places you'll go. Dr. Seuss
If we didn't have libraries many people thirsty for knowledge would dehydrate. Megan Jo Tetrick, age 12
The things I want to know are in books. My best friend is the man who'll get me a book I ain't read. Abraham Lincoln
Here is where I spend most of my "Free Time".
Click here to read he text of President Biden's January 6th, 2022 speech.
On June 4th, 2020 Kay and I celebrated our 60th Wedding Anniversary. Here we are on our wedding day! I was 22 and Kay was 20. We had been devoted to each other already for 5 years waiting for the Navy to allow us to be married.
On August 3rd, 2019 my family honored my 20+ years of military service by the award of a plaque at the Mount Soledad National Veterans Memorial (https://soledadmemorial.com) in La Jolla, California. Here is a photo of the plaque that now is on display there.
Kay also awarded a beautiful Quilt of Valor as a part of the award ceremony. The quilt is the most beautiful I have ever seen and it was made by Kay, Paige, and Kristen during a semi-annual "Quiltapaluzza". Take a peek here. One corner of the back side is here. All four of our children and all six of our grandchildren were present. It was a very special day! The next day was also very special as the entire family and a group of friends and neighbors celebrated Kay's Birthday (19 again?) at Drew's home.
Keep the following definition of "politics" in mind when someone tells you they do not want to discuss politics:
Politics is the process of making decisions that apply to members of a group. It refers to achieving and exercising positions of governance - organized control over a human community, particularly a state.
What they mean is they do not want to discuss governance or anything associated with governance.
Here is a photo of the Oculto Court Little Free Library, built by our neighbor Greg Birch.
This is what the Sierra Club had to say about the SDG&E new 36" gas pipeline they plan to build through Rancho Bernardo: Click here for the PDF. Largely due to the Sierra Club's actions, the PUC rejected the application to build this pipeline.
Skeptics of manmade climate change offer various natural causes to explain why the Earth has warmed 1.4 degrees Fahrenheit since 1880. But can these account for the planet's rising temperature? Watch to see how much different factors, both natural and industrial, contribute to global warming, based on findings from NASA's Goddard Institute for Space Studies.
In the history of the Earth there have been five "Mass Extinctions" over 4.5 billion years since Earth was born.
We are now on the verge of a Sixth Mass Extinction - and this one we are bringing on ourselves and cannot blame it on "Mother Nature".
For the complete scoop in climate science, check out "Real Climate", a commentary site by working climate scientists for the interested public and journalists. Start here.
The Paris 2015 Climate Summit adopted a sweeping agreement by unanimous consent of all 196 government representatives. The agreement text is
here. President Obama signed this agreement in 2016, committing the Unites States to comply with its provisions. In 2017 President Trump, a Climate Change skeptic, threatened to nullify this commitment. He has nominated two adamant Climate Change deniers to key cabinet posts, Department of Energy (DOE), and the Environmental Protection Agency (EPA). He also nominated for Secretary of State an oil company executive, who's company provided extensive funding for the Climate Change denial movement and suppressed corporate internal research evidence which supported the conclusion that Climate Change was real and was caused by burning fossil fuels.
Two reports of climate research that are of special importance are The Intergovernmental Panel on Climate Change, 5th Assessment, and the 4th United States National Climate Assessment.
Hungry for some GOOD streaming music? Try this KVMR Audio Player - streaming 24/7! then come on back when you're finished.
The United States is still borrowing money from China to buy oil from the Persian Gulf to burn in ways that destroy the environment needed to support life on our planet.
Every bit of that has to change.
Two quotable gentlemen make points applicable to the Climate Change Denial Movement
Mark Twain (Timeless and applicable now to the deniers who know humans are not responsible for Global Warming): "The difficulty ain't that we know so much, but that we know so much that ain't so." Winston Churchill (In 1936, addressing the gathering unprecedented war storm in continental Europe being ignored or denied in the UK): "The era of procrastination, of half-measures, of soothing and baffling expedients, of delays, is coming to its close. In its place we are entering a period of consequences."
July 2012 Greenland Ice Sheet Thaw
Amid the summer of 2012 drama of drought, fire, and record heat, the planet's destiny may have been revealed, in a single season, by the quiet metaphor of a silent, empty sheet of ice. In this new climate, aided by the lower reflectivity of the ice surface due to thaw and smoke particles from wild fires in the United States and Russia, the ice sheet will continue to shrink rapidly. In the new climate, the ice sheet is going to continue to shrink. The July 2012 experience would indicate the melting will take place much more rapidly that previously estimated. Should the entire ice sheet melt, global sea level would rise by about 24 feet. In the image above, on the left is the ice sheet on July 8th, 2012. The right-hand image was recorded by satellite only 4 days later.
What if all the ice on Earth melted?
National Geographic put together a set of images showing what our planet would like like. Here is a PowerPoint.
An abbreviated version of the Climate Reality Project's standard presentation is available for viewing here
Climate change is all about people !
The planet will not be destroyed by
climate change. Earth existed for billions of years before humans appeared
and will exist for billions of years after we are gone. What will be
destroyed is the habitat that makes our planet livable for our species and
many other forms of life. Many animal species already get it and there are
observable migrations to cooler latitudes.
What will happen if we don't reverse current trends is that we will continue
to see much more frequent and much more severe weather. That reality is
already here if you just pay attention. With a hotter climate, more severe
weather, floods and drought, and higher sea level, the places where humans
live now will be uninhabitable. Hundreds of millions of people will be on
the move to find alternative places to live or they will die. Without the
resources to resettle, most will die anyway. If you are unhappy about the
current rate of illegal migration from Mexico, ponder for a moment what will
happen when large portions of Mexico become so hot that people cannot live
there. Those people are not going to go to Central America - they're coming
here. This same phenomenon will take place all over the globe.
An excellent film has been produced addressing the issue of the impact on the world's population
resulting from large sections of the globe becoming uninhabitable. Rent it on NETFLIX or AMAZON and be
prepared to be shocked! The title is "Climate Refugees". Note that NETFLIX
carries the film in the documentary category and has declared the film to be "Dark"!
Click here to view the trailer.
40% of the world's human population lives within 100 kilometers of the coast.
Much of that area is within what is defined as the "low-elevation coastal
zone" (less than 10 meters elevation). Current estimates of potential sea
level rise with loss of the Greenland Ice Sheet alone well above that. The
reality is that Greenland *IS* melting. Arctic sea ice is retreating at an
alarming rate. Glaciers are making a relative dash for the sea. Giant
Antarctic ice shelves are breaking up.
What runaway climate change due to human caused global warming is doing is
making our planet substantially less livable for human beings. *AND*,
urgent action is called for not deferrals or denials. This is reality - not
a joke, yet the attendees at the recent Republican National Convention
roared with laughter at the notion that the President of the United States
should be concerned.
Too many people don't get this and that has to change. We simply must not
continue to dump 90 million tons of man-made global warming pollution
(mostly the greenhouse gasses carbon dioxide and methane) into the
atmosphere every day mostly by recklessly burning fossil fuel. I intend to
do my part to correct that.
Watch this film trailer and support the project to complete it.
Click here to view a slide show on greenhouse gasses.
Climate Reality Project Leadership Corps
Last August I was trained by Al Gore and the staff of the Climate Reality Project as a Climate Reality Project Leadership Corps Presenter. I am attempting, through my presentations, to engage as many citizens as possible in an effort to increase public awareness of the threat presented by Anthropogenic Global Warming and the associated Climate Change. Here are the handouts and reading lists I offer to my audiences. Have a look and help to spread the word that this is serious business. The only way anything will be done about this is by citizens becoming engaged and demanding action by our governmental representatives.
Setting the Record Straight on AB 32
Once again, California leads the way in the United States movement to protect the environment. California is attempting to do its part to prevent climate change. In 2007, the state legislature passed and the Governor signed "The Global Warming Solutions Act", or AB32. The goal of this act is to drastically reduce Greenhouse Gasses (requires emissions of greenhouse gasses to return to 1990 levels by 2020) and move toward a clean, green economy. This law has become the center of controversy largely over the January 1st, 2012 implementation of a market based mitigation strategy (Cap and Trade System) involving "Carbon Credit Auctions". There has been a great deal of misinformation and disinformation propagated by special interests attempting to maintain the status quo. Here is a link to a California Air Resources Board document addressing the myths surrounding AB32.
Note: California also is one of the seven member states (CA, AZ, OR, WA, NM, MT, and UT) of the "Western Climate Initiative" formed in partnership with four Canadian Provinces for the purpose of evaluation and implementation of ways to reduce the emission of greenhouse gasses. Notably absent from the coalition is Alberta, home of the Athabasca oil sands deposits which Canada hopes to pipe to the US crude oil refineries on the Gulf coast via the proposed Keystone XL Pipeline. These liquid bitumen deposits are among the most environmentally harmful sources of petroleum products. The northern portion of the pipeline has been slated to traverse sections of the Oglala Aquifer posing a potential threat to vital sources for drinking water as well as water for agriculture.
Here is a good piece addressing the problem in increasing inequality of the haves and the have nots in modern society.
For our 50th wedding anniversary, the family (fifteen and a half of us) gathered in Maui for a wonderful vacation together!
Use your SmartPhone to scan the QR Code above and see this web site on the dinky screen. Why? Because you can !
Tired of putting up with the visual litter of QR Codes everywhere. QR will soon be gone in favor of "Digital Watermarks". These are invisibly embedded in images that when scanned by the camera app in your smart phone, will direct you to a web site for more information. One such app for the iPad is free at the Apple app store. It is called "Mail-Link". I used it to scan an image in the April, 2013 edition of THE COSTCO CONNECTION magazine. It worked as advertised.
Click here for a great picture of the entire family. It is an image map that identifies the cast when you "mouse over" a face (and at least one belly)..
We all tried new things like snorkel and "SNUBA", horseback riding in the pineapple fields, sailing into the sunset, and "Zipline" and spent a lot of time just enjoying being a family.
Here is a PowerPoint slide show of photographs taken from the Space Station by one of our Astronauts. Fascinating !!
Click here for a link to Christmas 2008 at home in San Diego with all four children, their spouses, and all five grandchildren.
My friend Harry Hodges convinced me to become active in amateur radio again so I upgraded by license to General and bought a 2 meter hand held transceiver so I can participate with the local club members using their repeaters. I'm N6TFL now (used to be KA6NQV). Click here to see my Ham page. I've added a few radios and antennas to the collection and passed the exam to upgrade my license from General to "Amateur Extra", the top level in the license structure.
What does the future hold for our species, Homo Sapiens?
A great book to read to stimulate thought on the subject is Ray Kurzweil's
"The Singularity Is Near". An informative Q&A session with the author is here.
In the meantime, ponder this list as a commentary on life in general.
Fun trying out Segways (Click on the images above for short movie clips -
be patient, the one minutes clips take quite a while to download). Two more movies are here, and here. These last two have Larry and Molly Rothrock in them.
I fully support same sex marriage and I lean heavily toward the positions taken by those who call themselves "Pro-Choice".
A comment for those who do not believe in an afterlife:
"Life is not a journey to the grave with the intention of arriving safely in a pretty and well preserved body, but rather to skid in broadside,
thoroughly used up, totally worn out, and loudly proclaiming -- WOW -- What a Ride!" (author unknown)
The trick is to not get to that state too early !!!
My Personal Vision Statement Uncle Dean's WWII Memorial Project in Des Moines, Iowa
Human beings are actually just an eye blink in the grand time line of our planet:
Earth in born - 4.54 billion years ago
Earth surface hardens - 4 billion years ago
Life emerges on the planet - 3.8 billion years ago
Hominid species differentiate from apes - 6 to 8 million years ago
Homo Erectus stands up - 1.7 million years ago
Neanderthal Man appears - about 400,000 years ago
Homo Sapiens (us) appears in Africa - about 300,000 years ago
Homo Sapiens migrates to Southeast Asia and the Middle East - about 100,000 years ago
Human "Civilization" begins - 10,000 years ago
The Industrial Revolution's devastating impact on the Global Climate becomes obvious - 100 years ago
Homo Sapiens (along with much of the other life on earth) becomes extinct due to human caused environment destruction and global warming - 100 to 200 years from now?
Of course the entire universe of microbial life forms on Earth and the totally unknown world of life in the deep ocean environment will likely survive to evolve over the time remaining whilst Earth continues to exist.
Plant Earth leaves the orbital "Habitable Zone" and life of any kind is no longer possible - 1.75 billion years from now
An excellent graphic to put the Geologic Time Scale in perspective is here
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This is a No-Smoking Site. Click here for the reasons why.