TWO WELL PAID HOOKERS GET THE FJM TREATMENT

In the age of media saturation and shorter-than-ever attention spans, ideas are marketed no differently than products. And much like the release of a new product is carefully timed to coincide with the circadian rhythms of its particular market niche, ideas must be proposed only when they have the best chance to succeed. For example, an idea for a new banking regulation would best be proposed in the wake of a bank failure or market meltdown. Another example of impeccable timing would be proposing the abolition of the National Weather Service immediately in the wake of a major hurricane.

Is "impeccable" the word I want there?

Ranting about abolishing the Departments of Energy and Education is so 1998. I don't think it's too much to ask of our free market worshiping think tank hacks to come up with a new department to abolish every now and again. Get creative! Iain Murray and David Bier certainly did with "Do We Really Need a National Weather Service?" If you ever find yourself looking at a weather forecast and thinking "Gee, I wish there was someone I could pay for this information," keep reading. Santa has the perfect gift for you. Murray and Bier work under the label of something called the Competitive Enterprise Institute – best known for their climate change "skepticism" and a website called, I shit you not, enjoybottledwater.org. By now it should be clear that you are about to hear some serious weapons-grade free market masturbation here. Ready?

As Hurricane Irene bears down on the East Coast, news stations bombard our televisions with constant updates from the National Hurricane Center.

Boy I can't wait to hear why this is a bad thing. It's clearly bad, right?

While Americans ought to prepare for the coming storm, federal dollars need not subsidize their preparations. Although it might sound outrageous, the truth is that the National Hurricane Center and its parent agency, the National Weather Service, are relics from America’s past that have actually outlived their usefulness.

I…I've got nothing. I'm speechless.

It certainly has outlived its usefulness to the for-profit weather industry and companies like Accu Weather! But more on that in a moment.

The National Weather Service (NWS) was founded in 1870. Originally, the NWS was not a public information agency. It was a national security agency and placed under the Department of War.

Cool story, brah!

The Service’s national security function has long since disappeared, but as agencies often do, however, it stuck around and managed to increase its budget.
buy medications generic gaetzpharmacy.com no prescription

Yes, at some point the government got the bright idea that it might be economically and socially useful for people to, I don't know, have some information about the weather.

Today the NWS justifies itself on public interest grounds. It issues severe weather advisories and hijacks local radio and television stations to get the message out.

"Hijacks." It "hijacks" local radio and TV stations to spread "its message," which in this case is…a severe weather advisory.

It presumes that citizens do not pay attention to the weather and so it must force important, perhaps lifesaving, information upon them. A few seconds’ thought reveals how silly this is. The weather might be the subject people care most about on a daily basis.

If anyone can figure out what these sentences mean, please submit your answer in writing along with two color photographs of a shirtless Murray Rothbard to:

Competitive Enterprise Institute
Wacky Word Puzzle Contest
c/o Koch Industries
Abandoned Utility Shed 2-C
Wichita, KS 67202

There is a very successful private TV channel dedicated to it, 24 hours a day, as well as any number of phone and PC apps.

And they get 99% of their data from…wait for it…The National Something Something. Help me out here.

Americans need not be forced to turn over part of their earnings to support weather reporting.

Right. Let's chop the NWS and get all of our info from the Weather Channel, which will get its information from…

The NWS claims that it supports industries like aviation and shipping, but if they provide a valuable contribution to business, it stands to reason business would willingly support their services.

Logic (~1000 BC – Sept. 1, 2011)
It Died of a Broken Heart

If that is the case, the Service is just corporate welfare. If they would not, it is just a waste.

Note how they throw in a pejorative like "corporate welfare" to emphasize that these Koch-chugging corporate whores are actually On Your Side. Fighting for the little guy. Just lookin' out for you.

As for hurricanes, the insurance industry has a compelling interest in understanding them. In a world without a National Weather Service, the insurance industry would probably have sponsored something very like the National Hurricane Center at one or more universities.

"would probably have sponsored something very like the National Hurricane Center". Well, that's good enough for me.

Those replacements would also not be exploited for political purposes.

Sometimes movies remove scenes without realizing that other scenes make reference to the deleted material – like when Han Solo glances at the door of the room where the Wampas are detained in Echo Base as everyone evacuates, knowing that Stormtroopers will eventually blunder into it and be torn apart. Everyone remembers that, right? This is totally like that. I have no f-ing idea what this sentence is supposed to refer to. None.

As it stands today, the public is forced to pay more than $1 billion per year for the NWS. With the federal deficit exceeding a trillion dollars, the NWS is easily overlooked, but it shouldn’t be. It may actually be dangerous.

Oh my god, $1 billion? The amount we spend in Iraq and Afghanistan every 3 days? UNCONSCIONABLE.

Note the ominous teaser…let's learn how the NWS can actually murder you in your sleep.

Relying on inaccurate government reports can endanger lives. Last year the Service failed to predict major flooding in Nashville because it miscalculated the rate at which water was releasing from dams there. The NWS continued to rely on bad information, even after forecasters knew the data were inaccurate. The flooding resulted in 22 deaths.

1. Oh my god…someone got a forecast wrong? A weather forecast?
2. But why did all those people die? Accu Weather, the sponsor of this column, surely issued the correct forecast. Oh wait…

Private weather services do exist, and unsurprisingly, they are better than the NWS.

I'll tell you what IS surprising though – that CEI hacks getting underwritten by the Private Weather Services would come to such a conclusion. As surprising as when Rick Santorum took big campaign donations from the founder of Accu Weather in 2005 and then introduced a bill (which failed to attract a single co-sponsor) to prevent the NWS from issuing any weather forecasts. Coincidence is the lifeblood of free market worship.

When Hurricane Katrina hit New Orleans in 2005, the National Weather Service was twelve hours behind AccuWeather in predicting that New Orleans would be affected. Unlike the NWS, AccuWeather provides precise hour-by-hour storm predictions, one of the reasons private industry supports them.

Come on, guys. This is just ad copy from Accu Weather's PR department. I expect better of you.

It is not just random mistakes in crises either. Forecast Watch has found that

We can't trust big government bureaucrats, but I know who we can trust: objective sources of information like a website run by the lobbying arm of the for-profit weather industry.

Forecast Watch has found that the National Weather Service predictions of snow and rain have an error rate 20 percent higher than their private alternatives. “All private forecasting companies did much better than the National Weather Service,” their report concludes. In 2008, they found that the NWS’s temperature predictions were worse than every private-sector competitor including the Weather Channel, Intellicast, and Weather Underground.

This is the most shocking report I have read since the Corn Refiners Association concluded that corn-based sweeteners are nutritious, delicious, and have the ability to cure cancer.

NWS claims to spread information, but when the topic of budget cuts came up earlier this year, all they spread was fear. “There is a very heightened risk for loss of life if these cuts go through,” NWS forecasters said, “The inability for warnings to be disseminated to the public, whether due to staffing inadequacies, radar maintenance problems or weather radio transmitter difficulties, would be disastrous.” Disastrous? The $126 million in cuts would still have left the Service with a larger budget than it had a decade ago.

A federal agency's budget grew? Stunning. It's pretty stunning that the NWS budget has grown $125 million in that time, compared to the $400 billion growth in defense spending in that same timespan.

The massive bloat in government should not get a pass just because it’s wrapped in good-of-the-community clothing.

*slurp slurp slurp*

How does it taste, guys? Remember to breathe through your nose. Wouldn't want you to choke. And for christ's sake, give your jaw a rest now and then.

NWS services can and are better provided by the private sector. Americans will invest in weather forecasting because if there is one thing we can be certain of, people will want to protect their property and their lives.

I've been trying to clean up the language around here, but I must paraphrase a line from one of my favorite films: WE DO INVEST IN WEATHER FORECASTING, YOU FUCKING FUCK-WIT. WE ALL CONTRIBUTE A TINY PITTANCE ANNUALLY TO SOMETHING CALLED THE NATIONAL WEATHER SERVICE, WHICH PROVIDES US WITH WEATHER FORECASTS. YOUR ONLY OBJECTION TO THIS PRACTICE IS THAT THE WEATHER INFORMATION IS NOT HIDDEN BEHIND A PAYWALL WHERE YOUR UNDERWRITERS WILL RE-PACKAGE N.W.S. DATA AND PROFIT FROM IT.

I'm sorry, I don't know what happened there. The key must have gotten stuck.

Reading this gives our pampered, first-world butts a small taste of what it must be like to read North Korean newspapers and history books. Not being quite so used to it, reading this much propaganda gives me a headache.

43 thoughts on “TWO WELL PAID HOOKERS GET THE FJM TREATMENT”

  • This is the flip-side of the Health Care debate–to wit, because the government provides something available to all Americans for 'free'–that is, deducted in undetectably small amounts from our taxes–the private industries who provide the same service don't make the great big huge monster profits to which they feel entitled. "But we provide better service!" they claim. "Indeed," say we. "Marginally. And for that, you get a marginal payment from those of us who want better."

    But, ah, what happens when the government no longer provides that service? Suddenly if you want to know whether Hurricane Brunnhilde is going to make a game of pic-a-stics with your home, you can fork over the big bucks. If the NWS were to get cut, who wants to bet that AccuWeather, et al., will get expensive at the rate of booze right after the 18th Amendment was ratified?

    Now flip it back, and you see why every insurance company in this country will go to the mattresses to prevent a public option…

    And to Mssrs. Murray and Bier: Guys, stop thinking small. Privatize the *weather*.

  • I try not to post when all I can offer is a hur-hur-hur-well-said-sir, so please don't forget to post your columns to FB, so I can press like-like-like instead. Thank you.

  • I object to calling these two gibbons "hookers", on the grounds that it's demeaning to people who have sex for money.

    On a related note, I think I heard someone from the Cato Institute say on the Diane Rehm show that we should eliminate FEMA. This was maybe 3 days after Hurricane Irene flooded large parts of New England. His "argument" was that states should pay for disaster relief, and that someone from another state shouldn't be taxed to help people in New England.

    These people have rotten souls.

  • ed w. response says:

    "These people have rotten souls."

    I've come to think they simply have no souls. They are driven purely by selfish self-interests and are not immoral or moral but simply amoral. They don't care about other people and only them selves…

  • Middle Seaman says:

    The post disappoints me. It makes you believe that the two Koch suckers are unique and worthy of a post in this distinguish blog. Sadly that is what we hear all the time from media by sources from wall to wall. Hey, this guys are more realistic than most; they admit that there is weather.

    Why is eliminating NWS worse than austerity supporter, deficit cutting, unemployment increasing, big Phara lackey, I give up president and the whole used to be Democratic Party? Don't get me started with the morons in the media and the war criminals called the Republican Party.

    We should, however, abolish the DOD. Canada and Mexico can be stopped by the 100 trillion guns that roam, justifiable though (really?), our safe streets.

    While at it, legalize drug use. Private industry can deal with that easily. (The price will be higher than what I pay the dirty dude at the corner because they must pay the Cocaine CEO.)

  • "WE DO INVEST IN WEATHER FORECASTING, YOU FUCKING FUCK-WIT. WE ALL CONTRIBUTE A TINY PITTANCE ANNUALLY TO SOMETHING CALLED THE NATIONAL WEATHER SERVICE, WHICH PROVIDES US WITH WEATHER FORECASTS. YOUR ONLY OBJECTION TO THIS PRACTICE IS THAT THE WEATHER INFORMATION IS NOT HIDDEN BEHIND A PAYWALL WHERE YOUR UNDERWRITERS WILL RE-PACKAGE N.W.S. DATA AND PROFIT FROM IT."

    The only thing I think could add is: Why are we having this discussion in the first place? Then I remember the R's assault on public ed has gone on far longer and been more successful in many states than we may have realised. Its the only thing that explains the F-wits who believe this F-wittery.

    I agree with Ed W: Sexual Gratification Consultants are upfront and honest about why they're there and what they want.

  • This probably doesn't even need to be said, but information about the weather is obviously a public good (i.e., it benefits everyone, even those who don't pay for it), and public goods will always be underfunded by the free market. Basically it's like the dishes getting done in the house you shared with a bunch of people in college: everyone benefits from clean dishes, so everyone knows if they just wait another day before washing someone else might break down and clean them, so the dishes never get cleaned as often as they should. If a weather service were paid for then private individuals, quite rationally, will be tempted to wait for their neighbor to pay for it, and then mimic his behavior to prepare for storms, or use some file share that gives them the information for free (not to mention any non-sociopaths who do pay are of course going to tell friends, family, and random strangers if a hurricane is on the way). This means private companies will not get the same level of funding for this service that the government can provide, and so, to be profitable, will have to cut corners. So we end up with worse weather information and an unfair distribution of the cost (those saps who pay for it then warn the rest of us get screwed).

  • Not the most carefully vetted source (I'm in a hurry this morning), but seems clear that my impulse was probably right. Accu-Weather doesn't *compete directly* with NWS; it USES NWS DATA. Jackwad idiots.

    http://ask.metafilter.com/69655/Where-does-Accuweather-get-its-data

    These pseudo-free-market shills never want to admit, of course, how much their for-profit enterprises depend on the exact government largesse they pretend to criticize. They don't give a shit how much taxpayer money gets spent; they just want it spent into their pockets.

  • One evening, at KWTF, Channel 12, Bubbafuck, KS..

    18:27 PM

    (We see an NWS terrorist kick open the studio doors, brandishing a machine pistol. He his wearing a ski mask and followed by two of his comrades).

    NWS TERRORIST(Firing a shot into the ceiling): OK I WANT TO SEE HANDS IN THE AIR! NOW! NOBODY FUCKING MOVE! FOR THE NEXT FIVE MINUTES THIS STATION IS UNDER NWS CONTROL! YOU AT THE CONSOLE! YOU ARE GOING TO RUN THIS MESSAGE ABOUT A SEVERE TORNADO WARNING ACROSS THE BOTTOM OF THE SCREEN EVERY 5 MINUTES!

    Studio Tech: But Fresh Prince is on!

    NWS TERRORIST(Shoots studio tech): VERY WELL! ANYONE ELSE WANT TO BE A HERO!!! YOU!! GET IN THAT CHAIR AND RUN THE TORNADO WARNING!!

  • Arslan: your scenario actually makes sense. If the greedy bastards in the local TV station would only run tornado warnings to those who have paid for it, I'd be ok with the gubmit breaking in and forcing them at gunpoint to run said warning. One dead news director is better than 50 dead Oklahomacitians. Well, maybe not but you get my point.

  • Lance Mannion makes the point in a recent post that actually republicans think they own life, and the rest of us should be paying rent to them for the opportunity to keep breathing. He was talking, by the way, about Huntsman, the supposed "moderate" in their current race to the bottom. We might also recall the fire department in Tennessee which refused to put out a home fire because the home owner hadn't paid his taxes. This point of view is gaining strength.

  • c u n d gulag says:

    We here at AccuWeather feel the need to defend ourselves from scurrilous attacks that that suggest that we use NWS satellite data and prediction.

    To predict the weather, we use nothing but the finest and freshest chicken entrails, and Ouija Boards and Magic 8-Balls. And all of our fine pictures are computer digitally enhanced Etch-a-Sketch drawings that our ADD cousin Bertie ia paid to draw every day. The maps are courtesy of Rand McNally.

    We know that if the NWS was eliminated, we could everything handle our own. We've got access to plenty of chicken entrails, Ouija Boards, and Magic 8-Balls, and Bertie's got nothing much else to do.

    Teh STOOPID!
    It burns brighter than a thousand suns!!
    Oy!

  • Bill, sorry, I should have made clear that 'public good' here is a technical concept from economics. Wikipedia should have a more complete definition, but for these purposes it's any sort of good, the benefits of which accrue to people in addition to the purchaser. Ex: the watch I own doesn't just benefit me, but every stranger I happen to run into. So you have a fair number of people who never buy their own watches. So the amount people spend on watches doesn't reflect how important it is to people to know what time it is. (Normally, how much a society spends on X does reflect how much the members of that society care about X.)

    In the watch case, who cares? But it seems like a big deal if the amount of money we spend on tracking hurricanes falls short of our actual interest in getting hurricane warnings, which is what economic theory predicts will happen if you leave this to the private market. In other words, leaving out considerations of morality, shared national responsibility, or simple decency, this doesn't even make financial sense.

  • Holy shit, they're like caricatures. It's impossible to believe. "enjoybottledwater.com"? "(Obvious public service) is a waste of money because (transparently greedy reasons)"? It's too much.

  • Fiddlin' Bill nailed it. I'd expand the idea. The GOP and the two whores pilloried in this post are spouting libertarianism. Libertarians reject the idea of common good – but more generally the reject the idea of "The Commons."

    Everything should be private property.

    Nothing belongs to the community.

    Now get the hell off my grass.

    WASF,
    JzB

  • Monkey Business says:

    One of my favorite scenes from The West Wing:

    Governor Robert Ritchie, R-FL: My view of this is simple: we don't need a Federal Department of Education telling us our children have to learn Esperanto, they have to learn Eskimo poetry. Let the states decide, let the communities decide on health care, on education, on lower taxes, not higher taxes. Now, he's going to throw a big word at you – "unfunded mandate." He's going to say if Washington lets the states do it, it's an unfunded mandate. But what he doesn't like is the federal government losing power. But I call it the ingenuity of the American people.

    Moderator: President Bartlet, you have 60 seconds for a question and an answer.

    President Josiah "Jed" Bartlet: Well, first of all, let's clear up a couple of things. "Unfunded mandate" is two words, not one big word. There are times when we're fifty states and there are times when we're one country, and have national needs. And the way I know this is that Florida didn't fight Germany in World War II or establish civil rights. You think states should do the governing wall-to-wall. That's a perfectly valid opinion. But your state of Florida got $12.6 billion in federal money last year – from Nebraskans, and Virginians, and New Yorkers, and Alaskans, with their Eskimo poetry. 12.6 out of a state budget of $50 billion. I'm supposed to be using this time for a question, so here it is: Can we have it back, please?

  • TO: Competitive Enterprise Institute
    Wacky Word Puzzle Contest
    c/o Koch Industries
    Abandoned Utility Shed 2-C
    Wichita, KS 67202

    FROM: A Concerned Citizen

    Original: "It presumes that citizens do not pay attention to the weather and so it must force important, perhaps lifesaving, information upon them. A few seconds’ thought reveals how silly this is. The weather might be the subject people care most about on a daily basis".

    Translation: "This reminds of when I saw a squirrel hide under its tail when a neighbor's house cat gingerly investigated it and offered a few playful bats before moving on. The cat was a hurricane. And the squirrel was John Q. As long as John Q keeps hidden under that bushy tail, the house cat can't possibly get at him. It's not that John Q. is not aware of the house cat, it's just… well you get the idea, right? It's like the guy waving the samurai sword out on the highway telling the cops that he's 'coo-coo for cocoa-puffs'. That's like a clear blue sky with a plane in it. Something that just might house a terrorist looking for a building. Best you find yourself a rust y old girder from the Twin Towers to worship on, like it s was a fucking piece of the True Cross. Pray to it, offer up unto it, and all your fears will dissipate like a, oh fuck it "

    I would also add that I have available in the back of my truck, for only $199.95 a month, a fully modernized and computerated weather tellin' service machine which was done made by private enterprise in China and is therefore none o' your goddamn socialist government bullshit that you are forced at gunpoint to pay for. I'll even throw in a backup weather rag on a stick what tells you if'n it is windy when it moves, and ranin' when it's wet, for the low, low additional price of only $4.99!

  • On the one hand, I wouldn't mind seeing some actual numbers so I could tell whether those claims made in the original statement were correct or not. On the other hand, history and my experience tell me that people with that PoV who make such claims are invariably bald-faced liars who count on their "opponents" never bothering to check their claims. I'll just go with the odds (something on the order of 1,000:1) and assume that they are lying sacks-o'-shite.
    Incidentally, I can go Elder F. one better – for a mere $1.99 (plus S&H) I'll provide a Genuine Official American Boy's Scout Weather Log And Time Piece(TM). Easy to use, and 100% accurate at both weathertelling and timetelling. If it's wet, it's raining, if it casts a shadow, it's sunny (and daytime), if you can't see it, it's foggy (or night) and if it's not there, it's very, very windy. For more Secrets of The Weather Log And Time Piece(TM), a mere $19.99 (plus S&H) will get you the Official American Boy's Scout Weather Log And Time Piece(TM) Manual And Troubleshooting Guide. Remember, if it's not used by America's American Boy's Scouts, it's not Official!

  • I will not be beat!

    I will sell you – in the finest and oldest of American traditions, one that I hope to revitalize in the coming years – for the low, low price of $1.99/lb, an Official American's Boy Scout that will hold your backup rag on a stick weather tellin' device for as long as you don't tire of him. After that, why, you can torture and kill him, or quit feedin' and waterin' him as a Science Experiment, or sell him off to another weather enthusiast.

    Chattel slavery – it's the FUN way for weather hobbyists to fill out their weather maps!

  • These creeps really do appear to believe in an Infrastructure Fairy who would wave her wand and make all these niggling little details go away if we'd just be good little capitalists.

  • So exactly how much does a new satellite cost? How many do we need? What's its life expectancy? Put that, plus a few more costs on top and we can arrive at how much this service by Acu-weather will need to charge to recoup their investment. Last time I checked A) capitalist ventures mandate a return on investment as they're not in the altruism business. B) The first rule of capitalism is that you can only charge "what the Market will bear".

    Hmm… That's a very expensive subscriber service. So let's see who can afford that, particularly in these times. Either the common punter will not be able to afford that, or they will not be able to attract the number of necessary punters to spread the load to make it affordable to the individual punters. Besides weather for the most part is rather banal and just sort of happens. If it's sunny, it's sunny; if it's raining, it's raining; possible snow flurries, but so what? On a day-to-day deal it's not deadly or interesting. So the average punter really won't bother with the cost to subscribe to the service.

    So now we're looking at the media outlets and Local Government. Local Governments certainly need this information in the event of a tornado or hurricane, given that they can't raise revenue for consistent services eg teachers, police and fire would they be able to afford this "service"? Media outlets may be able to afford this service, but the amount they'd need to charge for advertising to recoup their costs. Could even the deep pockets of Proctor & Gamble or Exxon know some depths? There comes a point where even they will tell the TV stations to get F'd.

    Now then Acu-weather can always choose their own private media channel ie TV. Would this attract the correct number of punters as I've already mentioned? Would they themselves be able to obtain the necessary advertising revenue? Now given that the weather as I've already mentioned is usually hot or cold, wet or dry and some where in between and a bit of combination of those, but rather uninteresting and just ticks along in the background, so on the day-to-day, hour-to-hour no one's really going to tune in to watch. So how would they charge their advertisers? As there would be little to no demand on a normal day they couldn't charge the kind of rates you would to watch Snookums (or is it Snoopi?). How would they charge not to just recoup the costs of the satellites (yes plural as the more angles you look at weather from the more accurate the prediction), but their own fleet of hurricane-hunters, radar networks, purchase of data from local weather services (if I've got a barometer and some monkey intends to profit from it, I sure as heck am going to charge someone to use my barometer or to set up on my property), and we haven't even gotten into the talent side of running a TV station and the studio teams to run 24/7.

    I seem to remember that probably the best advertising dollars ever spent had to have been by Ricola cough drops. Here they'd bought some advertising on a here-to-with backwater media outlet of the day called CNN. Yeah they had a presence, but not really. Suddenly Papa Bush started bombing the crap out of Iraq. Well as Ricola had already spent the money, you can't mid-stream up the ante now that everyone is tuning in. So they paid bargain basement, and suddenly became a household word thanks to those yodellers and the father of the Yahoo.

    So what's their model? Two speed? If we only get 10 hits a day, you only pay X$, but if we get above n hits, you pay X+1000$? Better hope for some very interesting weather.

    I'm an ar-tiste so the only figures that I'm qualified to to study involve the female form and I can tell you that the numbers just don't add up for this to be a profitable venture. Yup, we're headed back to the stone-age.

  • Iain Murray and David Bier certainly did with "Do We Really Need a National Weather Service?"

    Sorry, hon. That's soooo 2005! I give you then-Sen. Rick Santorum's AccuWeather Protection Act.

    Let me add, AccuWeather sucks. Like, hugely sucks. Since I'm a Mac user, and AccuWeather is the weather widget that comes on all Macs, I know how horribly they suck. Thankfully, my familiarity with AccuWeather's tremendous suckitude has prevented them from ruining two major vacations and an untold number of more pedestrian plans that are weather-dependent. Like, picnics and such.

    One of the things that AccuWeather does which annoys the hell out of me is in the summer, their 5-days-out forecast is always a good 5-10 degrees cooler than the current temperature. In the winter time, it's always significantly warmer. And they're always wrong. When those 5 days pass and the day in question arrives, it's always completely different from what they said it would be. I don't know if this is just incredible optimism they're selling or what but I find it incredibly annoying. If you don't fucking know, don't say, 'm'kay?

    I fucking hate AccuWeather with a passion. I wish Apple would ditch it from their widget.

  • Last year the Service failed to predict major flooding in Nashville because it miscalculated the rate at which water was releasing from dams there.

    I live in Nashville. I was here during the floods. This is just WRONG. Stupidly wrong. How the National Weather Service is supposed to predict a HUMAN-controlled thing like the release of water from dams is beyond me.

    Anyway, The Army Corps. of Engineers fucked up.

    "Two Tennessee legislators, Senator Lamar Alexander, a Republican, and Representative Jim Cooper, a Democrat, have called for a Congressional investigation into communication between the corps and the people outside the agency — residents and local officials — over water releases at several corps-managed lakes that feed into the Cumberland River, which runs through downtown Nashville.

    "In addition, Mr. Cooper has asked whether the corps could have better managed water levels at its lakes, controlling the flow of water through dam floodgates so that the flooding would have been less destructive."

    Not the Weather Service's fault. But sure let's ditch the Army Corps. of Engineers. Bunch of uniformed beavers. Of course it has "Army" in the name, and right-wingers love everything army.

  • I'm surprised this numbnuts doesn't simply say we should hand the country over to Fox News and have done with it…

  • How much green do you think these assholes actually get pull down? Could it possibly be worth this sort of shame? It must have occurred to most plutocrats that they'll still be running everything when they decide to downsize their cheerleading squads in the Fourth Estate.

  • Fifth Dentist says:

    Ed W. Says:

    "On a related note, I think I heard someone from the Cato Institute say on the Diane Rehm show that we should eliminate FEMA. This was maybe 3 days after Hurricane Irene flooded large parts of New England. His "argument" was that states should pay for disaster relief, and that someone from another state shouldn't be taxed to help people in New England."

    By that reasoning, I estimate that the people in New York City and Washington D.C. owe the rest of us $3 trillion for the cost of the wars in Afghanistan and Iraq. After all, they were the only cities affected by 9-11. Why should those of us who were unaffected by that event have to pay for those moochers? Those cities should also shoulder all the costs of the Department of Fatherland Security.
    Also, those assholes who CHOSE to live in Texas should expect no help from the rest of us for the damage due to biblical drought/wildfires/locusts/frogs/deaths of their first-borns. Those people should just pull themselves up by the bootstraps and show us that good-ole personal responsibility they love to talk about. What's that Rick Perry, you want a federal disaster declaration? Fucking socialist!

  • Gin and Tacos: No, nothing's going to be OK, but at least we can laugh about it. Cuz if you don't laugh, you gotta cry.

  • When I see shit like this, I can't help but wonder if these guys actually have corporate backers for this shit, or if they've gone rogue. Do the execs at AccuWeather really want to have to buy their own satellites, or are they smart enough to shush Murray and Bier, knowing their business would collapse the moment the feds stop doing the hard part for them?

  • This may have been noted already, but CrapUWeather is run by climate change deniers. I suspect a major reason for the "do away with the NWS" is the Orwellian/totalitarian desire to erase any facts which contradict the ideology. There is no way the -Kochs or our other overlords – seriously think there's a profit to be made here. They're already making tons of cash repackaging NWS product, if they had to do data collection themselves they'd be bankrupt within six months.

    But NOAA and NWS are very visible, highly respected government science agencies that need to be intimidated, marginalized or silenced.

  • Hey, I don't live in a hurricane area or a tonado zone, so why should my tax dollars go toward helping people in other parts of the country?

    I'm pretty sure there is nothing in the Constitution about providing for the general welfare.

  • squirrelhugger says:

    I'm reading this on the 8th. Clicking on the link to the source material, Fox News has helpfully placed a banner alert above it: "Breaking news: Pa. Officials Call for Mandatory Evacuations of 100,000 People as Susquehanna River Continues to Rise".

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