Friday, October 07, 2016

Limping, barreling, hammering

Actually, no. Not Thursday, when this one appeared, and not in the month-old bedtime story from Climate Depot that purports to back up the hed:

TAMPA, FL — Speaking to supporters in Tampa, Hillary Clinton says climate change is “wreaking havoc on communities across America.” Clinton warns that Hurricane Hermine “is not the last one that’s going to hit Florida given what’s happening in the climate.” She says, “When it comes to protecting our country against natural disasters and the threat of climate change, once again, Donald Trump is totally unfit and unqualified”.

Drudge, of course, was just getting warmed up for Friday morning:

The real fun -- and please don't think we're minimizing the risk posed by a very dangerous tropical cyclone* -- is in the stories linked from the ear:

Taking us to such tales as (yes, rly):

As Hurricane Matthew charges into Florida with winds up to 140 mph, approximately 1.5 million people are preparing to clear out of the storm’s path. By Thursday evening, the National Weather Service was imploring residents to head to safety. “Now is the time to urgently hide from the wind. Failure to adequately shelter may result in serious injury, loss of life or immense human suffering,” the agency said on its website. On Thursday, President Obama declared a State of Emergency in Florida.

And then there was Matt Drudge, who was instead declaring a state of conspiracy. The founder of the Drudge Report spent his evening blasting out tweets that the storm’s forecast was grossly overblown. He even went so far as to accuse the government of exaggerating Hurricane Matthew’s intensity just to make a point about the dangers of climate change. Not kidding.

.. and this from one of the usual suspects:

This morning it looks like Matthew will probably not make landfall along the northeast coast of Florida. Even if it does, its intensity is forecast to fall below Cat 3 strength this evening. ...

While coastal residents grow weary of “false alarms” when it comes to hurricane warnings, the National Weather Service has little choice when it comes to warning of severe weather events like tornadoes and hurricanes. Because of forecast uncertainty, the other option (under-warning) would inevitably lead to a catastrophic event that was not warned.

This would be unacceptable to the public. Most of us who live in “tornado alley” have experienced dozens if not hundreds of tornado warnings without ever seeing an actual tornado. I would wager that hurricane conditions are, on average, experienced a small fraction of the time that hurricane warnings are issued for any given location.

Pro tip: If your blog title includes "Ph,D." and "climatologist" and your URL starts with "dr," I'm not really interested in what you'd bet on. I expect to see your data on the proportion of weather conditions to forecasts.

Anyway, the Fair 'n' Balanced Network seems to think that hurricanes are still a big deal, even if the eyewall doesn't technically cross into Florida's land mass:
Hardly sounds like it's limping up the coast, does it?
Drudge, apparently tired from a long day of debunking both the liberal fabrication of hurricane fear and the monthly release of more Maoist lies from the Bureau of Labor Statistics, had found a new shiny thing to play with by early evening:
Should you be scoring along at home, the WikiLeaks bombshell appears to look something like this:

At a speech for Morgan Stanley on April 18, 2013, Clinton praised the Simpson-Bowles deficit reduction plan — which would reduce corporate tax rates while raising the Social Security age. “But Simpson-Bowles — and I know you heard from Erskine earlier today — put forth the right framework. Namely, we have to restrain spending, we have to have adequate revenues, and we have to incentivize growth. It’s a three-part formula,” she said.

Which, if you've formed the impression over the years that Hillary Clinton is a neoconservative technocrat with an appealing bent for social justice issues,** hardly seems worth interrupting Drudge's nap for.

The scariest discussion I've ever heard at AEJMC was probably a panel in 2009 on the previous year's election, in which a NYT reporter suggested*** that the home office's first concern in the morning was whether everybody had read the Drudge Report. I get the point -- you need to know what the droolers are going to be talking about -- but I also think it's time the legacy media led the way in cutting off the oxygen supply. What about it, legacy media?

* A number of my Facebook pals are even now recalling Diana, which for many of us was the first hurricane we covered, if not the first to knock the lights out. Yes, Language Czarina and I also had one for our honeymoon (Gloria, which Pat Robertson prayed away from Norfolk so it could get to Boston shortly after we did) and another (Hugo) for our fourth anniversary. Now get off my lawn.
** I like two-thirds of this package, but I'm going to vote for all of it 
*** I may be exaggerating, but not by a lot. 

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