OT: The seas rise, the glaciers disappear: we major users of fossil fuels are condemning continents to ruin

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(EDUCATIONAL USE ONLY: Copyright Guardian Media Group plc)

From 'The Guardian' (UK)

Between Greenland and the Faroe Islands there is an undersea waterfall 30 times the size of the River Amazon. The water cascades over a submarine ridge, then rumbles down the ocean floor all the way to the Cape of Good Hope. This current is a result of the high salt content of the surface of the North Atlantic. The salty water, being denser than the water underneath, sinks and starts to travel. The global circulation system this flow initiates ensures that warm water travels back from the Caribbean to western Europe. Were the North Atlantic to become less salty, in other words, the currents keeping Europe warm would slacken. Eight and a half thousand years ago, an ice shelf damming two vast glacial lakes in North America exploded. The lakewater rushed through the Hudson Strait, mingling with the salty waters of the Atlantic. The result was a 200-year ice age, during which humans became extinct in northern Europe. In Greenland today, just to the north of the great Atlantic waterfall, scores of glaciers and ice-dammed fjords are beginning to melt. Over the past 20 years, an area of Arctic sea ice the size of Texas has disappeared. As the ice retreats, the pole becomes darker, absorbing more heat and accelerating the melting. The North Atlantic could become significantly wetter.

It is not clear what the results will be. The dilution of the ocean is most likely merely to slow the warming of western Europe. But there remains a possibility that it could cause a sudden drop in temperature so severe that Britain would, once more, become uninhabitable.

If this happens, then, calamitous as it will be, at least a kind of mortal justice will have been done. For, in the absence of a new ice age, the effects of global warming promise to be cruelly ironic: the impact of fossil fuel consumption will be most severe in precisely those regions of the world in which the least fossil fuel has been consumed. The arid parts of sub-Saharan Africa, for example, are becoming still drier: in East Africa, droughts of the kind which used to strike every 40 years are now arriving every four or five. The famines of the next 20 years will surpass any the world has seen before.

On the Indian sub-continent, the great centres of both population and food production are the valleys of the Ganges, the Brahmaputra and the Indus, all of which are fed by Himalayan glaciers. The glaciers are retreating so fast that the rivers may dry up in the summer by 2040. The results, if this happens, will be catastrophic. Bangladesh will be hit twice, as the people of the river deltas are driven off their lands by rising sea levels.

These projections make Britain's current "refugee crisis" look trifling. Already, according to the Red Cross, environmental refugees outnumber the people displaced by conflict and oppression. This week Sajeeda Choudhury, the Bangladeshi environment minister, told the BBC that climate change would leave her country with 20m environmental refugees. The rich nations would have to "rethink their immigration policies". The British environment minister, Michael Meacher, agrees: "We may have to do what Mrs Choudhury asks," he said.

The distinction between political and economic refugees has always been an artificial one: the poorest regions of the world remain poor largely as a result of the policies of rich nations. But in this case our moral responsibility is incontestable, if somewhat difficult to comprehend: every time you turn on your kettle in Birmingham, you are helping to flood Bangladesh. Global warming requires a wholly new ethical framework, one which classifies actions which have hitherto seemed innocent as deadly.

There is nowhere else for the displaced people of Bangladesh or sub-Saharan Africa to go. The cities have nothing to offer them: there will be no industrial revolution in these regions. If we don't let them in, they will die, and we, the consumers of fossil fuels, will be responsible. If global warming is not contained we will be faced with a choice of a refugee crisis of unimaginable proportions, or direct complicity in crimes against humanity.

The alternative is to reduce our carbon consumption not, as the world's rich nations envisage, by 10 or 20%, but by 90%, within the next 10 years. This may sound impossible. But there are hardly any western economic activities whose impact cannot be cut to this extent, either through technological change or through reduced consumption, without causing serious damage to the quality of life.

What this requires is radical thinking of a kind no government has yet been willing to contemplate: the abandonment of GDP as the index of prosperity, direct confrontation with the most powerful industrial lobbies on earth, a re-regulation of the market to force both producers and consumers to carry their own costs. Is any government brave enough to do this? Is any government brave enough not to?

-- Risteard Mac Thomais (uachtaran@ireland.com), January 27, 2000


The article's right about the glaciers disappearing and the sea rising -- BUT, it has not much to do with the use of fossil fuels. The Earth's getting hotter from the inside (and the ice on Greenland and Antarctica is melting from the bottom).

-- Dean -- from (almost) Duh Moyn (dtmiller@midiowa.net), January 27, 2000.

The use of fossil fuels is in no way responsible for global warming. The earth has her cycles and putting the blame on CO2 etc. from burning fossil fuels is, to be blunt, utter and complete bullshit.

-- Craig (craig@ccinet.ab.ca), January 27, 2000.

My dear Mr. Thomais,

Sir in construction worker lingo there is a verse which applies to your way of thinking.."May you starve to death...In the dark; walking"! Which means simply,that if you serria types had your way. Mankind would slowly disappear from the globe. Or else we would all move back to the caves. (Those of us that where left that is). I have seen way too many construction jobs shut down by you nut types! Any old trumped up cause..Snail Darter, a Pgymy side winder rattle snake! A snail! It doesn't matter. Your mind set causes people to be maimed and killed (remember the spate of spikes being driven into logs so that they'd be hit by a saw blade)?

In the last thirty years, I have seen literally thousands of jobs go the way of the Do Do bird because of your mentality. And in every instance, you (enviomantalist types) have completely ignored that there is one "constant" in man kind's developement. Our technology is evolving. And as it does so...We will attain the pollution free energy resourses we need. But time has to be given for that developement to occur sir...

If nothing else occurs with Y2K..We, as a people have learned the lesson of putting our lives (litterally) in the hands of just one segiment of our technology. We will become far more de-centralized in the future. Much in the same way as we would have, if the earth had of had a really close call with a celestial "event". And we would have been forced to rush ahead with a space program as a respondse to a perceived threat to all of man kind's exhistance by a celestial body..

We WILL develope new and far more greater sourses of power. Power which may well come from the manipulation of the earth's magnetic feild it's self..But we WILL do it sir. In the interium, we must muddle along with what we have. Or else subside into history as the Romans, Greeks, Egyptians and many other civilazations did.

The other "constant" in human endeavor..You cannot maintain a "static" civilazation for long. It will either die, or expand! It will either die, or else evolve.

There can be no in between...Much as you people would like for there to be.

"As for me...I shall finish the Game"


-- Shakey (in_a_buker@forty.feet), January 27, 2000.

Shakey, Are construction jobs part of the evolution you speak so fondly of?

What is being built by all these humble men with crane, backhoe and cement mixer? buildings like the ones that collapsed recently for no apparent reason!!!

Are man's greatest engineering achievements going to be measured in terms of the longest bridge, highest building etc or will we be smart and measure our achievments in evolution in terms of the greatest gain for all of humanity with the least amount of impact, preferably none, on our host; mother earth?

Just remember Shakey, you are a guest here on this orb!! She's the boss and if she gets pissed or sneezes you're bunker ain't gonna be worth a tinkers damn.

I wish you well my friend.

-- Can I say? (optimistically@home in the woods.org), January 27, 2000.

"Guess what everybody? I just found out that oil comes from fossils! That's right, it really does!"--- ---LadyLogic posting on TB2000 before she became an expert Debonker (Sorry, couldn't resist, it was just so perfect)

-- (x@x.x), January 27, 2000.

Seems to me that 8 & 1/2 thousand years ago (when the last episode of "ice dam" problems occurred) there weren't too many fossil fuel users. (OK, there were probably some peat fires). It's mind boggling to see otherwise honest & sincere folks get their knickers atwitter over absolutely NOTHING! I.e. did'ja ever consider that the current "ice dam" (or whatever else is bothering you today) problems are being cause by the S-A-M-E thing as caused it 8,500 odd years ago! The last century or so has been unusually QUIET as far as Earth cycles goes....there's NO reason to believe that any human activity is about to change that.

As was pointed out above, the Earth goes through the most wonderful and curious cycles of hot, cold, dry and wet imaginable! How foolish to think that we mere mortals can offer any real challenge to those events!!! Such ideas are more appropriate to the tired old socialist/globalist goals of getting the wealthy nations to transfer their wealth to other, less fortunate ones. Give it up folks, normal Earth cycles cannot be used as an excuse to fund third world countries.

-- Cycles (YouGottaBe@Kiddin.com), January 27, 2000.

-- Swimmer (only@test.fish), January 27, 2000.

"no way responsible for global warming ...". Durn right, we don't need no stinking subtle answers. We deal in black and white here, by golly.

Mr Thomais - explaining complex interactions is usually a waste of time; most people will tolerate no answer that Dan Rather can't completely cover between commercials. When they start lynching tree-huggers "for the children", look out.

Our growth in numbers *will* stop, at some point. We can stop it now, but it will take a great investment in education and rethinking our priorities. Or we can be stopped by the earth's limitations, which will cost billions of dead. But all populations are contained, eventually.

-- bw (home@puget.sound), January 27, 2000.

My dear Mr Can I say

As for myself personally sir..When you turn on a light (or the "on" switch on your PC..I,or one of my breathren helped to build the power plant you are using sir! When you acess the internet, one of my breathren (or I personally) ran the hard wiring, assembled the main frame servers.

When you stick that gas pump nozzle into your enviromentally incorrect car. One of the refineries had to be built and controls calibrated by one of my brothers (sisters). So that you could go home tonight to a hot meal, in the light, and a hot bath, if you wanted one.

As fossel fuels wane...We will see the emergence of new, non poluting fuels. Fuels which emit water vapor as a by product sir.. Or we will finally "see" a truely efficent battery in which to power our transportation systems.

The "bottom line" here at which I am trying to arrive at. Is that man's knowledge is expanding geometrically. It doubles now every 30 months..It is progressing so fast now, that flesh and blood intellect cannot keep up with it.

Y2K is and always has been about the human (collective) reaction to it's severe possibilities. Will we destroy our selves? That is the question...And we are still awaiting the answear to it.

"As for me...I shall finish the Game"!


-- Shakey (in_a_bunker@forty.feet), January 27, 2000.

a cara Risteard, I for one appreciate your digging this out of the Guardian. No simple task sifting thru the chaff of UK tabloid news mentality to find this nugget. Blessings on you lad! Ignore the comments of the amadanta'. After all, this country has tried to suppress for two centuries that Jefferson fathered 6 mulatto children, now officially "accepted" by the trustfund running Monticello as reported in The Washington Post yesterday. And kids, here is the real shocker. Tom's dear first wife who died tragically of diabetes, was the half-sister to Ms. hazel eyed/golden hued Sally. Tom's father-in-law was a busy man. Same Daddy to both women you see. Time Risteard, much time must pass first before truth can even be spoken let alone accepted here. Wait! Did you hear that? That darkie laughter? I think it's coming from near the Hemmings Clan slave plots on the Monticello grounds. So much for segregation, even in death. The seed was planted and has multiplied tenfold since then. Will make for colourul reunions in decades to come, as Tom, no doubt, intended. Keep posting Risteard! Slan.

-- Sally O'hEmmeagn (286yrsinUSA@slavery.com), January 27, 2000.

Dean: The ice on Greenland and Antarctica is melting from the bottom because the planet is heating up internally? Could you by any chance back that extraordinary statement up with a citation of some sort? I know scientists who study the antarctic ice cap, who go there every "summer" (our winter), have for years, and this is the first I've heard of your explanation. Also, how does it explain the melting of the Arctic ice sheet, which is on the ocean? I'm not flaming you here, but presenting information as unusual as that as bald fact requires some substantive background, IMHO.

-- Cash (cash@andcarry.com), January 27, 2000.

Let me see if I can explain this to you people using simple examples.

We know CO2 insulates better than other gases. (for those boys and girls who don't know insulate it means 'holds heat in')

We know we are releasing extra CO2 into the atmosphere. Good!

We know the hottest years on record occurred in the last ten. That's right boys and girls, it is getting hotter.

The gas we are releasing may be small in compared to the other gases that other systems such as volcanoe release. NO MATTER. Our extra little nudge may be the nudge that FUCKS THINGS UP. That is what homeostasis is all about. Contrary to what you tough, independent, real men types out there believe, small changes can have VERY VERY VERY SIGNIFICANT CONSEQUENCES. That is chaos or complexity theory in action.

Now for you boys and girls who think the amount we release is not important -- try this example

you are in a playground on that game that has a seat at each end of a board and it swings up and down with you on one end and your friend on the other end.

the earth is on one end and you and me all the other people on the planet are on the other end. there is shit underneath. you add to many people to one end and it collapses into the shit and the earth flys off into space.

got it.

-- Peter Starr (startrak@northcoast.com), January 27, 2000.

Its our fault. Therefore we must take care of the rest of the world.

BULL BISCUITS!! Another stupid socialist lament.

-- Larry Dreadon (larrydd@worldnet.att.net), January 27, 2000.

Another pitiful load of rotting fish from another "save everybody" looney tunes tree hugger. Don't you radicals ever grow weary of spouting your hysterical bullshit?

The ability of civilized, intelligent society to feed itself, stay warm in the winter and have some degree of transportation is far more important to human survival than your radical spew about some bass- ackwards tribes in Bangladesh. I feel sorry for them, but they are NOT my problem or the problem of any other folks on this forum. We have our own survival issues and those issues take absolute priority.

You are totally unreasonable and unrealistic.

-- Irving (irvingf@myremarq.com), January 27, 2000.

Ummm, I can't quote the source(s) where I saw this [Don't you just *hate* it when that happens!], but it seems that global heating is a prelude to a new ice age. Them glaciers have just gone back for another load. There! I said it, and I'm glad!

-- Barry Taylor (beezee@statesville.net), January 27, 2000.

wish i could remember the name of the organization--but a guy from it was on janet parshall's america the day the UN named the 6th billionth baby. his organization's goal is to reveal the truth regarding what he called politically motivated "junk science" and research that is being used to justify population control and other new world order agendas. he was very interesting to listen to. plus i have heard lots of scientists from the "other side" give evidence that global warming simply ain't happening.

-- tt (cuddluppy@aol.com), January 27, 2000.

This isn't liberal, it's about self preservation.

Doesn't it makes sense to drive a smaller car, use less electricity, pound on the planet a little less emphatically for the sake of your children. It doesn't take that much effort or brainpower or danger to buy a little less than you deserve (?), to use a little less than you deserve (?), and to care a little more.

Whether or not there is global warning, there are only 2,000 tigers left in the wilds. Are they weak? Do they deserve to die? You people claim to read the bible. Don't you know that locusts are the scourge of an ecosystem out of balance. Little things have a way of coming back and biting us.

What will you say if you are wrong? What if the seas are rising and we could have done something about it. What if your children suffer because you couldn't to without?


-- Peter Starr (startrak@northcoast.com), January 27, 2000.

Correct me if I am wrong here but : Animals (that includes human kind) require oxygen to survive. Humanity hasnt figured out a way to produce sufficient quantities of oxygen to keep all six billion of us alive. C02 is a toxic gas. C02 is converted into oxygen by plant life (under photosynthesis). We destroy vast areas of plant life every day. Doesnt this mean that , if we continue this progress we will destroy the very infrastructure that keeps us alive ?

-- XOR (drwizzard@usa.net), January 27, 2000.

'Ecohype' - the use of junk ecology to create scary scenarios for political or personal purposes.


Phillip Stott site

If you want ecohype at its most extreme, you can always count on George Monbiot's doomladen column in The Guardian . This week's example (27th January, 2000) would be laughable, if it were not such pernicious nonsense: "The seas rise, the glaciers disappear" . Here is the splendid riposte sent to The Guardian by Dr. Robert Badnock of SOAS, a world authority on the Indian sub-continent:-

"George Monbiot is right in at least one point ("The seas rise, the glaciers disappear"): the Indian sub-continent is of vital significance to our global future. Sadly, in seeking to make easy points about global warming he has got all his "facts" hopelessly wrong. Glaciers contribute virtually nothing to the flow of the Ganges, Brahmaputra and Indus rivers, which depend primarily on heavy monsoon rain and to a much lesser extent on snow melt (not glacier melt). There has been no long term decline in precipitation in the Himalaya, nor is there any evidence of it coming. The idea that the glaciers are retreating so fast that the rivers may dry up in the summer by 2040 displays an embarassing ignorance of the normal hydrological cycle of all these rivers, whose low flow period is in the winter, and which in summer continue to pour water down from the Himalaya in volumes that show no sign of diminishing."

"George Monbiot goes on to repeat the often stated view of environmental lobbyists that Bangladesh is being submerged by sea-level rise, with massive refugee consequences. In fact the Ganges delta, which owes its origin to massive deposition over millennia of silt derived from the still-rising Himalaya, is witnessing a continued net growth in its surface area. In what is an enormously complex region, there is no systematic evidence of net sea level rise in Bangladesh."

"There are real, and most difficult, problems of resources and development in South Asia, including those of water availability and land use. Rising demand stemming from increased population and economic development are already presenting formidable challenges. However, the degree to which Bangladesh alone has dramatically increased food production and industrial output in the last twenty years suggests that there are far more immediate, practical and feasible steps to tackling poverty and security than George turning off his kettle in Birmingham."

-- Jerry B (skeptic76@erols.com), January 27, 2000.

Peter Starr, you have a point in your second posting, but I will take issue with your first. It seems you have not had your finger on the pulse of the global warming issue.

1st of all, to have global warming you have to establish a slow upward trend toward rising global temperatures. Satellites roaming our atmosphere take these temperatures, and there has been NO RECENT increase in temperatures, and actually a slight decrease in temperature has been registered. The reason the temps. are taken on these satellites is to maintain a neutral space in which ground level fluctuations will not affect the monitoring.

There are no less than 18,000 scientists who stand by the assertion that there is no hard evidence of global warming.

Yes, we have seen record heat in the last ten years. It is due to solar cycles which have been recorded since the 1700's which we know to cause anomylous temperature fluctuations, storms, weird weather and other oddities, as these cycles affect our global magnetic field and many other invisible but significant aspects of our planet.

Facts, don't you just love em?

a href=<"http://www.sovereignty.net/p/clim/warming97.htm">What you never hear about greenhouse warming

a href=<"http://www.sovereignty.net/p/clim/cctutorial.htm">Global warming tutorial

a href=<"http://www.oism.org/pproject/">18,000 scientists say no to the global warming theory

-- OR (orwelliator@biosys.net), January 27, 2000.

Oh crappola, lets try that again.

What you never hear about greenhouse warming

Global warming tutorial

18,000 scientists say no to the global warming theory

-- OR (
orwelliator@biosys.net), January 27, 2000.


With the exception of 2 or 3 posters, the responses on this thread are a classic example of the shockingly incomprehensible ignorance, insensitivity, and extreme selfishness of the conservative right-wing capitalistic pig mentality.

I for one am appalled and deeply saddened to think that individuals such as yourselves could possibly still represent even as much as a small minority percentage of our population. You are the kind of people who would undoubtedly be happy to shit in your own house and live in it if it were more profitable than disposing of it. Utterly disgusting. How do you get up and look in the mirror every morning without being deeply ashamed of yourselves?

-- Hawk (flyin@high.again), January 27, 2000.

Hmmmm..... has anyone read "Fallen Angel" by Larry Niven?... interesting concept.

Throwing another log on the fire..... :-)

-- Netghost (ng@no.yr), January 27, 2000.

We as a race are so very arrogant

We believe that we are a superior species to all others on our planet

We believe that we have the right to rape and plunder our Mother for all our selfish wants

Many believe that their "God" has given them dominion over this whole planet to "do with her as they wish"

In fact, very few would know how to take care of even their most basic needs if someone else werent there to do it for them (ie. find food, water, shelter in a hostile environment)

Do you think maybe that is why the protests are so rampant and vicious? because if it all went to hell these pansy helpless fools couldnt save their own lives? if they were standing in a field of food (ie. dandelions, plantain, pigweed, peppergrass, clover, etc...) they in their ignorance would starve to death because there would be no arrogant bureaucrat close enough to them to tell them what is good to eat to survive on. research natural foods on our own? Oh my god we cant do that!food comes from the grocery store on the corner and medicine comes from the same place! there was no medicine before that! if you got sick you died. duhbudahmahbudahdabuddadabeeee

Learn to take care of your own needs or be prepared to depart the planet

Witch Woman

-- Witch and proud to be listening (wiccanwoman@gaia.com), January 27, 2000.

As a scientist, I have to say that NOBODY has "proven" than Man is causing this global warming.

Is global warming occuring? Seems to be. More data are needed to resolve the discrepancy between ground- and satellite-based measurements. The polar regions would certainly seem to be getting warmer. Ice is melting faster than at any time since recorded history. Sea levels will necessarily rise when all is said and done.

The problem with concluding that humans are responsible for a "greenhouse effect" is that everything is too interconnected for even the fastest supercomputers to model.

Case in point:

(Q) what happens when the temperature of the earth rises? (A) the concentration of CO2 goes up because it is more soluble in the air and less soluble in the oceans.

(Q) What happens when you put CO2 in the air? (A) You get a "greenhouse effect," producing higher temperatures.

Global warming promotes greenhouse gas release. Greenhouse gas release produces global warming. Feedback loop. You get the picture. Perhaps this is why, in the geologic record, climate changes are known to happens so damn fast.

-- green orb (greenorb@nowhere.com), January 27, 2000.

Holocene Climate

A very brief summary of Earth's climatic history: the last 10,000 years

Near the beginning of the current interglacial , global temperatures rose considerably about 10,000 years ago to usher in a period of time referred to as the Holocene . On the basis of temperature reconstructions derived from studies of latitudinal displacements of terrestrial vegetation (Bernabo and Webb, 1977; Wijmstra, 1978; Davis et al ., 1980; Ritchie et al ., 1983; Overpeck, 1985) and vertical displacements of alpine plants (Kearney and Luckman, 1983) and mountain glaciers (Hope et al ., 1976; Porter and Orombelli, 1985), it has been concluded (Webb et al ., 1987; COHMAP, 1988) that mean annual temperatures in the Midwestern United States were about 2 C warmer than those of the past few decades (Bartlein et al ., 1984; Webb, 1985), that summer temperatures in Europe were 2 C warmer (Huntley and Prentice, 1988), as they also were in New Guinea (Hope et al ., 1976), and that temperatures in the Alps were as much as 4 C warmer (Porter and Orombelli, 1985; Huntley and Prentice, 1988). In the Russian Far East, temperatures are also reported to have been from 2 C (Velitchko and Klimanov, 1990) to as much as 4-6 C (Korotky et al ., 1988) higher than they are today; while the mean annual temperature of the Kuroshio Current between 22 and 35 N was 6 C warmer (Taira, 1975), and the southern boundary of the Pacific boreal region was positioned 700 to 800 km north of its present location (Lutaenko, 1993). An estimate of the mean global air temperature that results from the amalgamation of these several records, as prepared by the Intergovernmental Panel on Climate Change (Houghton et al ., 1990), indicates that temperatures during the Holocene maximum were warmer than those of the past few decades for a period of time on the order of several thousand years.

In addition to exhibiting temperatures that were significantly warmer than those of today, the first half of the Holocene also produced several regions of significantly enhanced precipitation. The hyper-arid core of the Sahara, for example, was actually moist at this time and contained many lakes (Fabre and Petit-Marie, 1988; Petit-Marie, 1991), as the summer monsoon migrated northward by some 600 kilometers (Ritchie and Haynes, 1987), helping to create the extensive groundwater deposits of that region (van Zinderen Bakker and Coetzee, 1980) and giving life to ecosystems that supported crocodiles, giraffes, elephants and gazelles (Crowley and North, 1991). Increased monsoon moisture also extended across Saudi Arabia, Mesopotamia, and the Rajastan Desert of India (Bryson and Swain, 1981), drastically altering and enhancing the productivity of those lands as well. Indeed, because of the perception that these many biospheric changes were of a positive nature, this much warmer period than the present is often referred to as the Holocene Climatic Optimum (MacCracken et al., 1990; Ciaia et al ., 1992; Lutaenko, 1993; Lambin et al ., 1996). And it was during this particular warm interval that the world experienced perhaps the greatest of all anthropogenic advancements - "the rise of human civilization, based on the development of agriculture (Whyte, 1995)."

Last updated 1 January 2000 Copyright  2000. Center for the Study of Carbon Dioxide and Global Change

-- Jerry B (skeptic76@erols.com), January 28, 2000.

It does not matter what anyone thinks anymore. The end result will be the same.

Gobal warming is unavoidable.

I do disagree with the article in that, northern latitudes will be colder and dryer (loss of cloud cover and long term high pressure), while southern latitudes will be wetter. We may see a re-greening of the Med. and northern Africa as gulf stream currents shift further south. The south pole will be colder. The upswell from the Atlantic drift delivers latent energy and nutrients to the coast of the Antarctic continent. In time, both events will remoderate the global climate.

-- Surrounded (hiding@thefirststate.com), January 28, 2000.

Come on people, use your brains.

I am pasting from their website --

"The Oregon Institute of Science and Medicine is a small research institute in southern Oregon. It was founded in 1980 to conduct basic and applied research in subjects immediately applicable to improvements in human life - especially in biochemistry, diagnostic medicine, nutrition, preventive medicine, and the molecular biology of aging."

Listen, I am in preventative medicine, these phonys are not.

These are quacks. Do you read me? QUACKS! They are not a research institute. Check their site. There is no research. It is a phony.

The so-called Oregon Research Institute is another wise-use anti-environmental front for the gas, timber, and mining industry. They give money to loosers who propegate a bunch of whooey.

I am tired of this stupdidy.


-- Peter Starr (startrak@northcoast.com), January 28, 2000.

Ummm... I'm rather taken aback. I posted this because I think it makes an intelligent contribution to a debate worth having, concerning as it does the future of the planet and mankind. (I'm sorry that by some slip of the mouse I omitted the attribution to George Monbiot, which may have led some to believe that this was MY opinion). Personally, I have no axe to grind, but I observe, and I worry.

Thanks to the contributors who gave reasoned responses, both for and against.

As for the rest, I am saddened by the vehemence. I was used to the polly troll attacks on Y2K, but I never expected this.

So, suitably chastened:



Is fuath liom na h-amadain. Slan agaibh go liir.

-- Risteard Mac Thomais (uachtaran@ireland.com), January 28, 2000.

I'm sorry that you have been discouraged from posting again by the rude insensitive bastards on this thread, Risteard. I have always enjoyed your posts, and hope you'll reconsider.

It seems as though the timing of your post was unfortunate. The greedy capitalist pigs are in somewhat of a bad mood lately because their precious stocks are not doing as well lately, and it looks like you happened to post at a time when a whole flock of them were looking for someone to blame.

Their biggest fear is that someone is trying to take their money away from them, or that they may be expected to show some compassion for other life, and take some responsibilty for their actions. Please don't be offended by their insensitive remarks.

-- Hawk (flyin@high.again), January 28, 2000.

"Carried away, perhaps by His matchless creation, The Garden of Eden, He forgot to mention that all He was giving us was an interglacial." --- Robert Ardrey

-- (First=Last@Last.=First), January 28, 2000.


I am a greedy capitalist, also a have many friends who also are proud running dogs of the military-industrial complex. Many of us conservative pigs DO CARE ABOUT THE ECOSYSTEM! Sadly, the message by the Whackos (we have a lot on our side too) turns a lot of people off.

Still going down the middle of the road, dodgin traffic both ways... regards

-- Chief (bmc@sealret.com), January 28, 2000.

LOL!!!!!!!---- "The seas rise, the glaciers disappear"

Let's see, ICE is MORE DENSE than water, so if the ice melts the sea level would DECREASE!!! Come on people THINK once in a while. How often has your glass of ice-water over-flowed because you allowed the ice to melt? IT AIN'T HAPPENIN'

-- whatever! (dont.fall@for.it), January 28, 2000.

Risteard, I'm with Hawk. Don't go away, I like your contributions. Ignore the flying debris.

-- bw (home@puget.sound), January 28, 2000.

Well, Dean hasn't asnwered my question, but I have a few for Whatever: Have you finished fourth-grade yet? Have you noticed that ice FLOATS! and therefore cannot be denser than water? That water is the only (?) fluid that expands when it freezes? Have you noticed that glaciers are on LAND! and therefore if glaciers melt, the water runs to the ocean? Gawd.

-- Cash (cash@andcarry.com), January 28, 2000.

Just a couple of the folks at the Oregon Institute of Science and Medicine who Peter seems to think are "phonys" and "quacks":

R. Bruce Merrifield - Oregon Institute of Science and Medicine

Dr. Merrifield is the originator of solid-phase peptide synthesis, with which he carried out the first laboratory synthesis of an enzyme. In recognition of these accomplishments, he was awarded the Nobel Prize in Chemistry in 1984. Dr. Merrifield is Emeritus Professor at Rockefeller University where he directs a group of scientists working on various aspects of the development and application of solid phase synthesis in protein chemistry.

Martin D. Kamen - Oregon Institute of Science and Medicine

Dr. Kamen is the discoverer of Carbon 14 and the originator of many of the techniques by which radioactive tracers are used to elucidate the chemistry of biological processes. He also carried out extensive research that underlies much of our understanding of the process of photosynthesis. For his discovery of Carbon 14 and work on tracers, Dr. Kamen received the Enrico Fermi Prize from the United States Department of Energy in 1986.

Peter's "quacks" post seem to be a bit of quackery itself.


-- Jerry B (skeptic76@erols.com), January 28, 2000.

Thanks, Cash. You said that more nicely than I would have. (I'll never forget my ninth grade science experiment proving just that---the glass overflowed.) If this indicates the level of science literacy in this country, we are in big (upper-case) TROUBLE.

Has anyone besides me noticed that the more legitimate science articles and reports seem always to hedge their bets? Many statements by legitimate independent scientists seem to feature disclaimers like: tentative, might indicate, we think it may, looks like so far, requires more research, etc. Whereas reports from indentured scientists and corporate shills criticize this conservative approach as not being able to agree on evidence or conclusions, and then launch into their definitive, cocksure, overly confident explication of "the truth." Remind anyone else of Pollies?

Bear in mind that many of us view and understand the Earth as an extremely complex integrated interactive system. There are other critical issues besides global warming. That said, here is my contribution to this thread.

NASA/Goddard Space Flight Center--EOS Project Science Office The cold Southern Ocean surrounding Antarctica soaks up carbon dioxide from the atmosphere like a sponge, but scientists have discovered that the greenhouse gas doesn't stay there. Now researchers have found that the carbon dioxide actually ends up deep in the subtropical ocean and will report their findings in the Jan. 28 issue of the journal Science. When scientists first started using computer models to see what happens to carbon dioxide added to the atmosphere by humans, the models showed that lots of the greenhouse gas was sponged up from the atmosphere and stored in the cold Southern Ocean, said Kenneth Caldeira, a climate scientist from Lawrence Livermore National Laboratory. But when scientists tested the water in the Southern Ocean, they didn't find the massive stockpile that would have accumulated if the ocean was storing man-made carbon dioxide. "They found that there was very little anthropogenic carbon in the Southern Ocean, so it seemed that some of the early model results were wrong," said Caldeira. The ocean absorbs about one-third of all man-made carbon dioxide, said Caldeira, and does it mainly in the cold regions because carbon dioxide dissolves easily into cold water, just like a soda in the refrigerator will stay bubbly a lot longer than a soda sitting in the sun. If the ocean didn't soak up carbon dioxide, the amount in the atmosphere would increase a lot faster. Caldeira and Philip Duffy, also from Lawrence Livermore, added factors to their computer model that made the global oceans more realistic. "Water in the ocean is layered," said Caldeira. "Warm water sits on the top with colder, dense water below." When the water is very cold, like it is in the Southern Ocean in wintertime, the cold layer of water is very close to the surface and it grabs carbon dioxide out of the atmosphere. There is a boundary dividing warm surface water and colder waters below. That boundary is very close to the surface in the Southern Ocean, but it becomes deeper and deeper as it runs north into the tropics, where the interface between warm and cold water is as much as a mile deep. Using their new model, Caldeira and Duffy found that the carbon dioxide that gets absorbed by the Southern Ocean actually ends up in the subtropical latitudes as it slides along base of the cold, dense water layer and sinks into the deep subtropical ocean. Some scientists expect that global warming will make the Southern Ocean less able to take carbon dioxide out of the air. "The fear is that if you warm things up too much, more precipitation will make the surface of the Southern Ocean less dense," said Caldeira. "You may start shutting off the entrance of carbon dioxide into the ocean, and things would warm up a lot faster," he said. But Caldeira warns that studies also show that if things warm up, more microscopic plants that use carbon dioxide could compensate for a Southern Ocean shutdown. Although there is plenty of room in the deep tropical ocean to store carbon dioxide, the ocean may not be taking up as much of the greenhouse gas in the future, said Caldeira. "As the ocean absorbs more and more carbon dioxide, it becomes less able to absorb additional carbon dioxide because the water becomes acidic, so the oceans may become less efficient at carbon uptake," said Caldeira. A problem, he said, that could make the climate change more quickly. This study was supported by the NASA Oceanography Program, the Department of Energy Center for Research on Ocean Carbon Sequestration, and the Lawrence Livermore National Laboratory Directed Research and Development Program. ### ______________________________________________________________


1. http://www.eurekalert.org/cgi/users/toc 2. mailto:wampler1@llnl.gov 3. http://www.gsfc.nasa.gov/ 4. http://www.eurekalert.org/cgi/users/toc

Can anyone spell p o s i t i v e - f e e d b a c k - l o o p ?

I knew you could.

-- (First=Last@Last.=First), January 28, 2000.

And, while I've got you here.... (and I'll try to do better at formatting)

NASA/Goddard Space Flight Center--EOS Project Science Office Frank Wentz, a physicist at Remote Sensing Systems in Santa Rosa, Calif., has confirmed that the atmosphere has gotten warmer and wetter over the last decade. The results of his research will appear in the January 27, issue of Nature. As part of NASA's Pathfinder Activity, the study involved comparing the Advanced Very High-Resolution Radiometer (AVHRR), the Microwave Sounding Unit (MSU), and a Special Sensor Microwave Imager (SSMI) for their accuracy and consistency in monitoring global climate. The instruments measure three important facets of the climate system. The AVHRR measures sea surface temperatures, the MSU measures air temperature, and the SSMI measures humidity. Wentz and his co-worker, Matthias Schabel, compared the data from the instruments to see if changes in sea surface temperature, air temperature, or humidity matched one or both of the other data sets. "Even though eleven years is a very short time to observe climate change," says Wentz, "the combination of these three instruments can produce a much better definition of climate trends than any of the instruments could alone." "The three satellites combined provide some of the strongest evidence so far of a climate trend of increasing air temperature and humidity," says Wentz. This would make sense because as air temperature increases the atmosphere is able to hold more water and as the Earth's global temperature increases, scientists would expect the amount of water in the atmosphere to increase. "We have found that the amount of water vapor in the atmosphere has increased by 2 percent between 1987-1998," says Wentz, "Water vapor is really the primary greenhouse gas in the atmosphere and has a greater influence on global warming than carbon dioxide, but we're not sure whether this increase of water in the atmosphere will lead to an increase in global warming." This study not only validates the accuracy of the three satellite instruments, but also provides new information on climate dynamics and should help resolve some of the past controversies concerning the accuracy of satellite data. "There is now clear evidence that the atmosphere has significantly warmed and moistened over the last decade," says Wentz, "Now, whether or not this is due to natural climate variability or to human-induced climate change is still uncertain." ### ______________________________________________________________


1. http://www.eurekalert.org/cgi/users/toc 2. mailto:wentz@remss.com 3. http://www.gsfc.nasa.gov/ 4. http://www.eurekalert.org/cgi/users/toc

-- (First=Last@Last.=First), January 28, 2000.

Cash & First=Last,

Thank you for explaining what I mis-spoke by using the word "dense", You made my point better than myself. If water EXPANDS when it freezes (ice=glaciers) then it naturally contracts when thawed. Right? So how could ice contracted (water) make the glass overflow? Yes, admittedly some glaciers are on land, but most of the ones melting are in the water.

-- Whatever! (DONT.FALL@FOR.IT), January 28, 2000.

Hokie, bw and the oh-so-condescending Peter Starr, I will not attempt to put words in your mouth, but it sure *sounds* like you all are buying into the current propaganda being spewed by the PTB.

Good stewardship toward the planet and it's resources is all that it would take to make this planet a better place. The only thing standing in the way is greed, very large megalo-corporate greed.

The knowledge of ways that this planet could be completely different from the way it is now is out there for the taking. Why haven't we seen these tremendous innovations that could lockstep us into clean non-polluted conserative consumption? The only thing standing in the way is greed, very large megalo-corporate greed.

Clean water? EASY

Recycle all waste matter in dumps? PIECE OF CAKE

No more use of pesticides and commercial fertilizers on our growing soils? NO PROBLEM

Neutralization of the most noxious of all waste products, nuclear waste? GOT IT COVERED

Reduce and/or eliminate the destruction of rainforests? NOT AS DIFFICULT AS YOU THINK.

Eliminate the need for fossil fuels in locomotion of any kind? IT'S HERE, READY TO GO.

You see, when you know these problems can be solved TODAY, if only the big boys would step aside and allow it to be, you gain a totally different perspective on the issue. You stop blaming 'man' and you start feeling resentful of the bullsh*t line about there are too many of us useless eaters sh*tting and using up all the precious resources.

This is so much rubbish. Instead of making people feel bad about the way our *american* use-it-and-throw-it-away-society has evolved courtesy of those who make the money producing the use-it-and-throw- it-away-things, why don't you spend your valuable time fighting the good fight to get these innovations out in the open so that we may move forward in our efforts to become a less innocuous species inhabiting this planet.

Thank you.

-- OR (orwelliator@biosys.net), January 28, 2000.

One last note. All of the above innovations amount to simple good stewardship of the planet. Nothing more, nothing less.

The answers to complex problems usually lie in simple answers....a quote from someone, I'm sure.

-- OR (orwelliator@biosys.net), January 28, 2000.


I didn't say anything about the qualifications of the people on board at this Pacific Institute etc. I merely pointed out that the institution is NOT A RESEARCH INSTITUTION, does not carry out primary or secondary research as far as I can tell.

The fact that a phony institution carries fancy titles on it's phony board does not qualify it to speak on important matters.

Now if those fools with titles want to demonstrate their knowledge on this specific subject, fine.


1) READ THE ORIGINAL POST. It talks about the effect of the Gulf Stream stopping. Go to a globe. London is on the same latitude at northern Canada, on the Hudson Bay. If the Gulf stream stops was a DOWNWELLING OF FRESH WATER WILL INITIATE, then Europe become a cold, frigid continent just like northern canada. NO MORE AGRICULTURE, JUST LIKE NORTHERN CANANADA 400 MILLION UNABLE TO FEED THEMSELVES

2) Ice on TOP OF THE ANTARCTIC CONTINENT will run into the ocean raising seawater


-- Peter Starr (startrak@northcoast.com), January 28, 2000.

During the deepest periods of the last age, we know that the oceans' shorelines were farther out. Eg., Florida would have been connected to the Bahammas. During the warmer eras, oceans were higher. Eg., what is now Miami would be under water and Orlando would be right up on the coastline.

How do we know when temperatures were warm and cold? You do Antarctic ice core samples and do gas chromatography of the air bubbles trapped inside. The relative ratios of different oxygen isotopes correspond nicely with temperature.

Anyway. How do you naysayers explain that? Global warming means a rise in sea level because lots and lots of ice is in the form of massive freshwater glaciers atop the mountains in antarctica. Which, by the way, is a real continent with genuine land underneath, not just an icecap. When these crash into the sea, the sea level goes up.

Nuff said.

-- greenorb (greenorb@fakemail.com), January 28, 2000.


It took me less than 20 seconds on the OISM web site to locate information indicating that they do carry out, and publish, original research.

More generally, the baseless scurrilous assertions in your posts about the OISM, and what they do, and don't do, may serve to alert readers here about the quality of some of your own "research".


-- Jerry B (skeptic76@erols.com), January 28, 2000.

Hawk, nobody could have said it better. Only they wouldn't live in a house with their shit, they'd try and peddle it to feed their greedy, fat faces. Talk about ignorance walking around in clothes--with the exception of Peter, Thomais, Witch Woman and a few others, this forum has always been dominated by selfish, hateful, wasteful, right wing, morons, scared shitless that somebody was gonna' steal their stash of Y2K munchies. I hope they bake next summer, because after all there's no global warming, just good tanning weather. Dumb bastards!

-- gilda (jess@listbot.com), January 28, 2000.

Whatever, before you post again, would you please take an elementary earth science course -- say fifth-grade level -- so you have some faint idea what you're talking about? Wherever did you get the idea that glaciers are on water? Many of them flow into the sea, but from land. They break into pieces at the ocean-shore interface and form icebergs. Even the Ross Ice shelf in Antarctica is grounded on the sea bottom for much of its area. And any time you add more water to an already existing volume of water, you increase the overall volume of water. Duh.

How much ice/water we talking about here? Try this: the Antarctic ice cap is more than two miles thick, top to bottom. Greenland's ice cap is anywhere from 6,000 to 8,000 feet thick. If the West Antarctic Ice Sheet all by itself broke apart and melted, it would increase worldwide ocean levels by more than twenty feet. And 70 percent of the world's population lives within twenty feet of sea level.

-- Cash (cash@andcarry.com), January 28, 2000.

Ah, Gilda...posting your usual extreme leftist fodder. Instead of bashing those of us who are not buying the global warming gambit, why don't you lay out *your solution* to the problem for these folks. You know the one...The biodiversity plan...show these people just how extreme you are.

Frankly, I prefer the solution being one of humans doing the right thing, when *allowed* to do so. Read my postings above for the cue. Don't come back here and tell us that the useless eater masses wouldn't push for all of the above solutions, if they knew about them, cuz you'd be lyin'.

While you're at it, get a clue about the truth of global warming. It's a political/power/control issue and nothing more.

-- OR (orwelliator@biosys.net), January 28, 2000.

Your morons still haven't got it right.

1. we know co2 traps heat -- old, old, old, science

2. we know we are releasing more into the atmosphere -- positive measurments

3. we know the planet is warming -- positive measurement

4. your kids, and their kids, and their kids, etc. etc. will hate you for screwing up this beautiful planet and not trying something different. IS THAT WHAT YOU WANT?



-- Peter Starr (startrak@northcoast.com), January 28, 2000.

Allright, Peter....we have all heard enough of your charming rant.

So now...what is YOUR solution, pray tell? You insist on continuing with your diatribe in spite of truth/realities offered, so do us all a favor by closing with what YOU want done about the whole thing.

Certainly, this will alleviate your need to continue posting with no end...and no solution, and worst of all, no counter point to the scientific proof provided that a lot of what you are ranting about is garbage.

We all look forward to your input....????

-- OR (orwelliator@biosys.net), January 28, 2000.

OR -

Maybe this will give an indication of part of the solution; if not the major part of it. A *long* read....but well worth the journey. If you take the time to read it; to see where the discussion goes...and ends up...I don't think you will leave empty handed.


Best to all,

-- steve (WhoCares@nymore.Right?com), February 03, 2000.

I offer an informative Article from "Successful Farming" on an anticipated drought in the Great Plains area. Although drought and temperature elevation appears to be part of a longer normal weather cycle, it may be used as "evidence" by some of an unusual change cause by man's activities (i.e. "global warming.") Remember this article next summer when the anticipated drought materializes and is paraded out as "Global Warming" in a Presidential campaign or is used to justify signature to some treaty.


[Fair Use for education and research]

Are we facing a major drought? The western Corn Belt is already in peril and drought conditions are moving east By Dale Orhtman

The chances of the Corn Belt suffering a major drought this summer are beyond good. The area is highly susceptible to drought, particularly the western Corn Belt.

If you look at the drought situation right now, things look bleak," says Don Wilhite of the National Drought Mitigation Center, Lincoln, Nebraska. "And the outlook for this spring is not very good. Most areas in Nebraska show no soil moisture. Forecasts for that area are normal or below normal, which means we probably wont recharge the soil profile."

Research on rainfall trends shows this area moving into a dryer phase that will probably continue over the next few years, Wilhite adds. "One of our concerns here is that it has been so wet (in the western Corn Belt) the last 10 to 12 years, that there has been a trend to get out of planting sorghum and go to dryland corn. If we do get into a dry cycle, growers would have to question that strategy."

Steve Hu, with Meteorology and Atmospheric Sciences at the University of Nebraska, adds that several different things point toward a significant drought in the Corn Belt in the near future. Such a drought may have already started.

"This region [western Corn Belt] has had the least rainfall ever recorded between September 15 and the present time in history," he said in late January. "The long-range forecast does not indicate any substantial recovery in the near future."

Hus predictions are based on data recorded from up to 168 weather stations over 110 years. "Droughts often migrate from east to west and, of course, the East Coast suffered extensively from lack of rainfall last year," he says. "It doesnt look good for this region this year and possibly for the next few crop years."

Jim Newman, a retired Purdue University meteorologist and climatologist, is also a firm believer in drought migration. "Drought began in Texas in 1998, migrated to the East Coast in 1999, and now appears to be headed for the Midwest," he predicts.

Great Lakes levels dropping

One major sign of an approaching drought is that water levels in The Great Lakes are at the lowest levels in many years, Newman says.

Newman, who has made extensive studies of drought cycles, warns that the nations current drought pattern is very similar to that preceding the Dust Bowl of the 1930s and the Midwestern drought of the 1950s.

"Im not forecasting a disaster, but the trend is there, and it is big," Newman asserts. "Of course, no two patterns are alike. Sometimes these migration things break up in a season of pretty good rainfall. But the general pattern for the past couple of years has been drier than normal over a large portion of this continent."

What are the chances that rainfall will return to normal? Newmans prediction is grim. "The way things look right now, it would be practically impossible for the Corn Belt and Wheat Belt, as a collective area, to get above-normal precipitation this year  and probably not any time in the next few years," he forecasts.

La Niqa still active

Part of the blame for drier conditions can be placed at the feet of a continuing La Niqa event. University of Kentucky meteorologist Tom Priddy notes that much of the Ohio River Valley experienced drought from mid- 1998 through 1999, probably as a result of La Niqa. The 18 months of low rainfall left the region with a shortage of subsoil moisture.

He expects La Niqa conditions to continue. In the Ohio River Valley, that usually means above-normal precipitation through March  typically 16 inches or more in the first three months of the year. Then conditions tend to fade back into a weak La Niqa spring and early summer with below-normal rainfall. And then near-normal rainfall conditions should close out the growing season, based on past performances of La Niqa events in that region.

Relief for the Ohio Valley

Looking further ahead, Priddy notes that all indications call for La Niqa (caused by the southern oscillation in the Pacific Ocean) to fade away and let the North Atlantic oscillation take over in at least the Ohio River Valley. The northern oscillation (which also affects European weather) appears as though it could produce cooler and wetter conditions in the eastern U.S. by fall.

Most weather observers note there seems to be rather loosely defined 20- and 12-year drought cycles that take place in the Corn Belt. Both cycles are coming together to produce drought in the very near future. Michael Speltz, a Freese-Notis Weather Service meteorologist in Des Moines, Iowa, feels "this growing season will represent 12 years since the last significant crop-impacting drought in the Midwest."

He cautions, "We need to see how winter turns out fore we even feel comfortable predicting the temperature trend for this summer, let alone rainfall. If this winter ranks as one of the 10 mildest for the U.S., then we would lean toward a warm summer. But as for precipitation this year, that is going to take more study."

University of Colorado climatologist Connie Woodhouse warns that such cycles, while discernible, are not precise enough to use in predicting a drought down to a particular season.

However, Woodhouse warns that we could be facing a major drought period sometime early in this millennium. Conditions and timing are right for a dry, scorching period that possibly would dwarf even the Dust Bowl days of the 1930s.

Two such droughts occurred during the previous millennium, in the thirteenth and sixteenth centuries, according to an extensive study made by the University of Colorado in conjunction with the National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration (NOAA).

Great Plains mega drought

"Data strongly supports evidence for Great Plains droughts of a magnitude greater than those of the twentieth century" in the near future, the study found. And it warned that current land practices and weather prediction models point to "an increased vulnerability to Great Plains droughts" this century.

Woodhouse, working with Jonathan Overpeck of NOAA at Boulder, says those earlier droughts covered a major portion of the western United States. Evidence they studied  including tree rings, archaeological findings and lake beds  indicates those droughts lasted longer and probably covered at least as large an area as did the Dust Bowl.

One of these mega droughts ran from about 1275 to 1300. The second ran from near 1580 into the early 1600s. The Dust Bowl of the 1930s lasted only about seven years.

Not a prediction, just fact

Woodhouse emphasizes they arent making firm predictions about future droughts as a result of their study. "Were only pointing out what has happened in the past to use as a reference in trying to determine what may happen in the future," she explains.

Their studies indicate that smaller droughts, which were as big as the Dust Bowl, have occurred "once or twice a century over the past 300 to 400 years," she adds. They escribe the Great Plains as "a region particularly prone to drought."

Purdues Newman is less certain about mega droughts. "The unique thing about the drought of the 1930s, which I studied in great detail, is that it lasted only seven years. But, I dont want to be among those talking about what happened back in the 1200s, based on things like fossil records and tree rings and that sort of thing."

Wilhite is more philosophical about droughts. "Every drought is a different beast!" he says.

-- marsh (siskfarm@snowcrest.net), February 03, 2000.


GREAT post! I'll try to read and give it the attention it deserves soon. Just wanted to thank you.

-- steve (Mash@Cares.See?.com), February 04, 2000.

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