Friday, November 27, 2020

Winter Storm Forecast: 8am Monday

Here is the forecast for the developing winter storm as of 8am Monday.

And, here is a forecast of the snow on the ground as of that time.

More snow will accumulate during the day accompanied by strong north winds. Please keep this in mind if you are going to travel in the region. 



Thursday, November 26, 2020

Happy Thanksgiving!!

We live in an amazing time: prior to COVID: the lowest level of extreme poverty in the history of humanity, famine nearly a thing of the past, no major wars. While there is still more to do, science is allowing us to get a handle on COVID. We have a tremendous amount about which to be thankful. 

Most of those blessings have borne fruit in the United States because of liberty, property rights and the free enterprise system. I bright young person can choose a career in whatever field he or she believes will bear the most fruit. So, we should always keep in mind:

Happy Thanksgiving. 

Heads Up: Midwest Winter Storm

While this is very preliminary, I want everyone to know there is a possibility of a major winter storm in the Midwest Monday and Monday night. Keep an eye on the weather if you are going to be traveling. 

Happy Thanksgiving, Everyone!!

Wednesday, November 25, 2020

Tuesday, November 24, 2020

Flood Threat in the South

Southeast Texas, Louisiana and southern Mississippi have a risk of serious flooding developing late in the week and early next week. Please keep this in mind as you plan your travels and monitor the weather accordingly. 

12:45pm Tornado and Travel Weather Update

Snow continues to fall over much of Colorado from the mountains east to the Kansas-Nebraska border. It will gradually move east into this evening and will affect I-70 and I-76.

The red area is where a tornado will likely be issued this afternoon and evening. Thunderstorms are developing from southwest Kansas into the northern Texas Panhandle which will likely cause large hail and may cause a few tornadoes. Please monitor the weather in this area the rest of the day.

I will be updating on Twitter @usweatherexpert. 

Make America's Wasps Great Again!

The subject of this posting is the insect not white Anglo-Saxon Protestants.

The United States is in danger of losing the ability to produce anti-venom for wasp and other insect stings. As usual, the government seems to be part of the problem. Even though the United States and Europe now have effective treatments, if we brought over Europe's anti-venom across the Atlantic this fascinating article states:

...The FDA would likely require “multimillion-dollar clinical trials involving sting challenges,” says Golden, referring to the act of intentionally stinging people by holding a yellow jacket, for example, on the arm of a volunteer until it stings them, which comes with the risk of anaphylaxis. “So, we’re stuck,” he says.

I recommend reading the entire article if you or someone who know has allergic reactions to insect bites.

Monday, November 23, 2020

Instead of a Climate Czar, Here's What America Really Needs...

So you know where I am coming from, I am a Reagan conservative. That means:

  • Liberty, free enterprise, and the rule of law are paramount.
  • Our huge government is failing us in many ways. We need much smaller, and more effective, government. 
But I make one exception pertaining to smaller government: The United States needs a National Disaster Review Board (NDRB) modeled on the National Transportation Review Board. The NDRB would focus on natural disasters and, yes, would include responses to disasters caused by extreme weather whether related to changes in climate or not. 

I have written a great deal about this topic. 
  • Part One is here
  • Part Two is here.
  • Wired calling for a NDRB is here.
  • You can find many other of my postings on the topic by doing a Google search.
The National Transportation Safety Board, an independent agency, has been an amazing success at making all forms of transportation, especially aviation, far, far safer. The NDRB, if constituted in accordance with the recommendations, would likely achieve similar success. 

Assuming President Trump's court challenges fail, the Biden Administration has a chance to take a real step forward for the nation by creating a National Disaster Review Board. It is something non-political that would be a major step forward for Americans of all stripes. 

Climate Czar: Starting Off With a Bad Decision

This just came across my news feed.  

While one can debate the merits of whether we need a "climate czar," Mr. Kerry is a poor choice. He is not an original thinker nor has he demonstrated original thinking during his career. He will be a mouthpiece for Big Climate. 

So, we can expect more windmills and other failed solutions to the problem. What we need is next generation nuclear and innovative solutions that will emit little or no greenhouse gas while bringing prosperity to the developing world. 

Precipitation For Thanksgiving Week

Please note the heavy rain forecast in the South. Flooding may result. 

Saturday, November 21, 2020

Why We Need Gap-Filler Radars

Today, the Washington Post published an article pertaining to a number of serious gaps in weather radar coverage across the United States. I have spent considerable time on this topic and I thought it might be helpful to place the locations of the gaps and, as I see it, the priority for filling them. 

The two thin circles represent the range of two non-federal radars. The numbers represent the location of gaps and the priority for filling them. I take into consideration,
  • The severity of the gap.
  • Population density.
  • The likelihood of tornadoes and flash floods. 
To save money, the gap-fillers can be the far less expensive C-band radars rather than S-band like the primary network radars depicted by yellow on the map. 

Beyond the necessity of these radars for storm warnings, the radars can also sense the winds aloft which is a valuable contribution to more precise weather forecasting, especially in an era of mesoscale modeling. Assuming the land for radar towers can be donated (e.g., state park, large municipal parking lot, etc.), the acquisition and installation of the radars can be for $25 million or less (but Congress will have to appropriate additional, ongoing, funds for maintenance). That's a bargain as federal expenditures go.

There are many small areas with less than ideal radar coverage (e.g., the two in Kansas, see map). These could be handled by very inexpensive X-band radars which can go on top of buildings or even cell towers. Several counties could band together for the purchase then donate the radar to the NWS.

Is This the Approach You Want to Educating Your Children?

I just saw this commercial for public schools. See what you think.
Nothing about math. Nothing about science. Nothing about physical education. Evidently, public schoolteachers in Kansas don't care about those things. These rather intense individuals care about 'justice.' 

Perhaps if we give children a great traditional education (i.e., phonics, traditional math, great communication skills and how America's ideals are the greatest in the history of the world), the students would be able flourish on their own in our diverse society.

Friday, November 20, 2020

Drought Forecast to Worsen

Since September I have been updating our readers to the increasing probability of major drought over the western half of the United States. The National Weather Service and the National Drought Center have teamed up to make this rather concerning forecast. 
The brown areas are already suffering from drought. The yellow areas are where drought is forecast to worsen. The green areas are where dryness conditions are forecast to improve. 

The 2021 winter wheat crop has been planted and needs moisture. The developing drought conditions in Nebraska, Kanas, Oklahoma and Texas could be a serious challenge to wheat farmers. 

Over the next seven days, things may actually improve a bit. 
We'll continue to report on drought and moisture conditions. 

COVID - What Is the Way Forward?

What do we do to stop COVID suffering and economic disruption moving forward?

The scientific evidence is absolutely clear: closing schools is a terrible idea. It is past time we use scientific data -- not politicians CYA'ing -- to make vital decisions. Schoolchildren as a group have suffered the most in this pandemic due to have their crucial educations interrupted. This is particularly insane in places like NYC where schools are closed while restaurants, gyms, et cetera, are still open. The statistics show schoolchildrens' risk is a tiny fraction of older peoples.' 

Closing schools is just one of the many bad decisions. The doubling-down on masks is another (scroll down to postings below). So, what do we do to get us on the right track? I suggest going on offense.

While I am not a physician, there are some common sense things we can do to get us out of this mess sooner rather than later. These suggestions are a combination of my ideas and those of epidemiologist Dr. Michael Mina.

  • For the time being, the high risk people (60+, immune system issues, etc.) would be better off by quarantining. Masks give a false sense of security. Get your groceries brought to your car. If you want restaurant food, use take out. If you want to meet or have lunch with someone in person, do it outdoors. If you are going to visit someone indoors, or they are going to visit you, both should quarantine for a week. If the news reports are correct, we are about two months from having the first doses of the vaccine available, so the quarantine defense and its inconvenience won't have to last that much longer. Yes, this is "defense." 
  • While we are waiting for the vaccine, we need to -- as quickly as possible -- implement use of the new home COVID tests. If you are virus-free you can safely visit the home of people who are also virus free. The airlines could test everyone before boarding (United is already doing this for some flights). This would be going on offense against the disease.
  • Congress should focus much less on micromanaging the economy and more on doing what is necessary to get every safe and effective vaccine (there are apparently three) out to everyone who wants them. Fast! I am a fiscal conservative but we should spend whatever is necessary to get past this. It is vital to put people back to work and resurrect our economy. Offense.
  • The Biden advisor, Zeke Emmanuel, whose advice to Mr. Biden is that the elderly should be the last to get the vaccine is both stupid and immoral. The elderly in group living and care homes have suffered the most and they are most vulnerable. Health care workers should receive it first. Then everyone should receive it on a more or less equal basis with, perhaps, some preference to older people. Why? With two of the three vaccines needing an initial and booster shot, it is much easier to quickly vaccinate people in a group living area than, say, remote areas. The goal is to get to "herd immunity" -- enough of the population has either had COVID or has been vaccinated -- that the coronavirus disappears from the population. The range of the population needs to be between 43 and 60% of the population for herd immunity to take effect. Offense. 
We can have the necessary conversations about the deficit and other issues when we can see light at the end of the coronavirus tunnel. 

Thursday, November 19, 2020

Meanwhile, Our Humanity Is Taken Away

Skyrocketing suicides are just part of the problem with the COVID precautions. Some are arguing masks are taking away our humanity. 
While opinion, this important piece is here

Wednesday, November 18, 2020

More on Masks Not Working

 I wasn't expecting the hugely favorable reaction on Twitter to the posting (below) about the latest study that -- yet again -- demonstrates masks, social distancing, etc., don't work. 

There is another peer-reviewed study out today that says masks do not work:

In this community-based, randomized controlled trial conducted in a setting where mask wearing was uncommon and was not among other recommended public health measures related to COVID-19, a recommendation to wear a surgical mask when outside the home among others did not reduce, at conventional levels of statistical significance, incident SARS-CoV-2 infection compared with no mask recommendation. 

One of my readers sent me a link to all of the studies that show the same thing. It was prepared by the Swiss Policy Institute. You can review them here

Also, there may be less to the number of cases of COVID we are experiencing in the United States than meets the eye. Details here

I want to be clear: masks would not bother me so much if there wasn't evidence they make the situation worse (again, see posting below). In some localities, they are forcing people to wear masks outdoors which is clearly nonsense.