Switzerland has national referenda, in which the citizens vote their preferences about important issues facing the nation. The process has provided an interesting look at Swiss beliefs about immigration. In 2010 the Swiss voted for automatic deportation for foreign criminals. In 2009, voters approved a measure to ban minarets. In February of this year, the [...]
The Los Angeles Times has been doing a fair amount of drought coverage that can be worry-making (e.g. “Severe drought? California has been here before”), but on Monday it assured readers that 70 years of low rainfall won’t be a state killer.
Well-read water worriers know about the Medieval mega-droughts that struck the west from 900 [...]
The Los Angeles Times had an interesting front page graphic on Wednesday, showing that Beijing’s air pollution is many times that of the famously smoggy City of the Angels.
The chart goes with a news article about the struggle of Chinese people to convince their government to tackle cleaning up their nation’s air, a hugely expensive [...]
Here in northern California, local TV news has a lot of coverage about the water shortage, which I don’t remember happening during previous droughts. So the situation is bad, with millions more people using water when there is less of it.
True, most of the water supply goes to agriculture, not home faucets, but the farms [...]
In San Francisco, the city’s public transportation system is doing an upbeat rollout of a new layout for trains where seats are being removed so more people can be crammed by standing.
Less comfort, more crowding — there’s winning sales pitch!
Nobody mentions the cause of increased crowding but it must be at least somewhat due to [...]
If the powerful of business and politics have their way, America will be burdened with a historical high percentage of immigrants.
As shown by Census figures for 2010, the United States is already headed for a record proportion of foreign-born, even without the monstrous Senate bill which doubles legal immigration and hands out millions of work [...]
When the brilliant futurist, biochemistry professor and science fiction writer Isaac Asimov visited the 1964 World’s Fair in New York City, he was inspired by the array of new technology to prognosticate about how American society would look five decades hence.
The Business Insider recently had a fascinating analysis of the many things he forecast accurately: [...]
On the last day of 2013, one bad statistic is the amount of rainfall for California; this year has been among the driest around the state, and the driest ever on record in San Francisco.
The average precipitation for the city, as recorded from 1849, is around 21 inches; this year saw only 5.59 inches.
Elsewhere, Yosemite [...]
The failing economy of the once-Golden State has perked up enough to start drawing newbies once again, with more than 300,000 new residents in the last year. California had unemployment over 10 percent for four years, so October’s 8.7 percent joblessness indicates the uptick that is so attractive to outsiders.
In San Francisco, the tech industry [...]
Water supply in California is such a serious issue that even journalists report on it.
Of course, scribblers describe the problem in terms of supply only (rainfall, reservoir levels and snowpack), never the growing demand (immigration-fueled population growth).
In recent decades, following a bad state-wide drought in the mid 1970s, Los Angeles installed millions of water-conserving toilets [...]
West of the Mississippi, water supply is a problem. (Check out the Drought Monitor map, updated weekly, to see the current state of dryness which is concentrated in the west, not the east.)
California is overpopulated at 38 million residents, and several years of sub-average rainfall have added to the stress on water supply. The majority [...]
Physicist and Professor Albert Bartlett was responsible for instructing many thousands of Americans about the indisputable connection between population growth and resource use. His true genius was the ability to take wonky math facts and make them clear and even interesting regarding explosive human growth on earth.
Prof Bartlett practiced his signature speech a lot, giving [...]