The Friends of California Libre...

19 June 2010

Enjoy It While It Lasts

Greetings, friends,
If you're in Los Angeles this next week, it's the Solstice...and our annual film festival.  If you have a free evening, I can recommend these...

Tonight (19 June) they're showing "Desperately Seeking Susan" for free at 8 PM on a big screen at 7th & Figueroa.  That might be's a wonderfully dated '80s movie, and it's always nice to have a little wine and cheese and organic snacks sitting out on the concrete; the weather is cooperating anyhow.

Late Sunday I'm going to "Hickey & Boggs" at the Redcat, a hipster detective chestnut Bill Cosby and Robert Culp made after "I Spy"; like all the rest of these movies, the tickets are $12...

On Tuesday night a major oil spill couldn't stop me from seeing "The Adventures of Buckaroo Banzai Across the 8th Dimension", one of the weirdest things I ever taped off cable and then watched the hell out of through high school, college and then "young adulthood".  John Lithgow is going to entertain; this is sold out but there is a rush line, at LA Live across from Staples.  "Laugh while you can, monkey boy!"

Next Friday night I'm going to "Centurion " at the outdoor Ford Amphitheatre; besides being another nice venue, this looks like a fun new film about the 9th Legion, a Roman army that completely disappeared in Scotland in 117 CE.  There are still tickets for this one; anything described as a cross between "300" and "The Warriors" is worth $12.

Then next Saturday afternoon I got a ticket for "Pee Wee's Big Adventure" at the Orpheum, and amazingly there are still seats for this one (the Orpheum is pretty large.)  That night I'm going to see "Farewell" at LA Live, a documentary about a female reporter on the first airship to circle the world, the Graf Zeppelin, who had an affair during the voyage and apparently wrote a thoughtful diary about that hopeful time, the 1920s.

Just think...we are only a decade from our own '20s.

I probably won't notice.  C'mon, I lived next to the hipster capital of LA for 15 years, and by the end I didn't even care.  I missed my last Sunset Junction to camp out in Malibu.  When I moved to Los Feliz in 1994, Sunset Junction was a minor street fair, a place to run into old friends, gawk at your neighbors, and catch a local band after a few shots at the Detour...the one weekend when the straights felt safe in the leather bars.  Fifteen years later, Sunset Junction was advertised like a circus, a big venue full of bratty Westside and Valley kids, caramel corn and full Coachella 'tude with a $25 admission fee.  You say, you were 28 then, and 43 now.  Maybe.  Maybe.  I've got nothing to crow about, except that I can't even deal with white people any more.  Let me tell you a story about California.

I drove out to Ventura, to County Line, to Neptune's Net.  It's the stuff of legend, the bedrock of experience, a Southern Californian's first whiff of freedom.  The wake & bakes, quick beers for breakfast, cutting school or killing a weekend, and we'd be off down the 101, that long gray ribbon lined with trees and later the sound walls, and at the end the clouds hanging in the milky blue Valley sky, the clouds coming in from the ocean.  The freeway climbs over Pumpkin Pass into Rabbit Valley, and for a few moments there's not a single building, just the freeway and the speeding cars, the golden hills, the oaks and the sky.  I've lost count how many times and in how many cars.  Agoura is full of houses now, but so little else has changed.  The shortcut to the beach is well ingrained, up Kanan through the first two tunnels, west on Mulholland, fork left at Encinal.  Huge mansions atop the mountains now, and trailers hidden in the canyons.  The edge of the city, just far enough out.  It's one thing to live an hour from LA, but 2 or 3?  That's serious business.

I was hanging out with the Levy sisters again, the kids running around, the fresh air blowing through the pepper trees and a horse's whinnies just behind the conversation.  It's one of my only highs left; writing, travel and Malibu.

I'll miss it when I'm gone; ahem, I'm speaking in the voice of a tree I've yet to plant.  It'll miss me when I'm gone.


McClatchy Washington Bureau
Study finds more evidence rapid Arctic warming isn't natural
By Renee Schoof
WASHINGTON ­ The Arctic was cooling for 1,900 years because of a natural change in Earth's orbit until greenhouse gas accumulation from the use of fossil fuels reversed the trend in recent decades, according to a study published Friday in Science magazine.
Scientists reconstructed the temperature record of the past 2,000 years using evidence from tree rings, ice cores and lake sediment, and found a steady cooling trend in Arctic summer temperatures of about 0.5 degrees Celsius ­ 0.9 degrees Fahrenheit ­ during the first 1,900 years. The cooling was caused by a slow natural cycle in Earth orbit that continues in this century.
"The summer cooling would likely be continuing today were it not for the increase of greenhouse gases from fossil fuel burning," said David Schneider, a scientist at the National Center for Atmospheric Research and one of the authors of the study. "The results are important in showing that the dramatic changes happening today ­ and particularly the rapidity of the changes ­ are not natural."

Yeah, we got distracted by that oil well, but real life is never quite as dramatic, is it?  More like a Juggernaut.
Climate Change to Force 75 Million Pacific Islanders From Their Homes
Sydney - More than 75 million people living on Pacific islands will have to relocate by 2050 because of the effects of climate change, Oxfam has warned.
A report by the charity said Pacific Islanders were already feeling the effects of global warming, including food and water shortages, rising cases of malaria and more frequent flooding and storms. Some had already been forced from their homes and the number of displaced people was rising, it warned.
Click here to read more on our site
Global Warming Threatens Lake Titicaca, Imperils Millions of Bolivians
La Paz, Bolivia - Global warming has accelerated the evaporation of Lake Titicaca, the water level of which has dropped to the lowest point in years, Carlos Andrade, of the Binational Autonomous Authority of Lake Titicaca (ATL), told The Associated Press last week.
"Water levels have fallen 88 cm (nearly 3 feet) this year, far exceeding normal lows," Andrade said.
Click here to read more on our site

As I've told a few people, this is merely our first test.  There are many more to come if we really expect to outlive the dinosaurs.
** Engineering Earth 'is feasible' **
Geo-engineering projects could retard climate change but are no substitute for cutting emissions, a Royal Society report concludes.
< >

Our poor president, he's trying, right?  Right?  I mean...he was?
Obama cracks the whip at Copenhagen global warming talks
Obama orders cut in federal government's greenhouse-gas emissions

Wasn't he?
Oil Sands Test of Obama's Green Credentials
The Obama administration faces a test of its environmental credentials in deciding whether to approve a pipeline carrying greenhouse gas-intensive oil sands fuel from Canada into the US.
Hillary Clinton, secretary of state, is expected to decide as early as this month whether to approve the Alberta Clipper, a 1,000-mile pipeline designed to carry up to 800,000 barrels a day of fuel from Canada's vast oil sands.
Click here to read more on our site

I mean, we knew we were fucked already; I can't even remember back 2 months.  Didn't we?
Bush-era EPA document on climate change released
The 2007 draft suppressed until now calls for regulation of greenhouse gases, citing global warming as a serious risk to the U.S. A finding by the Obama administration is nearly identical.
By Jim Tankersley and Alexander C. Hart
Reporting from Washington -- The Environmental Protection Agency on Tuesday released a long-suppressed report by George W. Bush administration officials who had concluded -- based on science -- that the government should begin regulating greenhouse gas emissions because global warming posed serious risks to the country.
The complete article can be viewed at:,0,4010488.story

Maybe not.
US gives Shell green light for offshore oil drilling in the Arctic
To see this story with its related links on the site, go to
Conservationists say the decision by the Obama administration to allow drilling in the Beaufort Sea repeats Bush era mistakes
Conservation groups based in Alaska have accused the Obama administration of repeating the mistakes of George Bush after it gave the conditional go-ahead for Shell to begin drilling offshore for oil and natural gas in the environmentally sensitive Beaufort Sea.
The Minerals Management Service, part of the federal Interior Department, yesterday gave Shell the green light to begin exploratory wells off the north coast of Alaska in an Arctic area that is home to large numbers of endangered bowhead whales and polar bears, as well as walruses, ice seals and other species. The permission would run from July to October next year, though Shell has promised to suspend operations from its drill ship from late August when local Inuit people embark on subsistence hunting.
Environmentalists condemned the decision to allow drilling, saying it would generate industrial levels of noise in the water and pollute both the air and surrounding water. Rebecca Noblin, an Alaskan specialist with the conservation group the Centre for Biological Diversity, said: "We're disappointed to see the Obama administration taking decisions that will threaten the Arctic. It might as well have been the Bush administration."

That WAS almost 9 months ago (this is old news.)  I mean, a lot has happened...right?
"Sensitive" Oil Industry Memo Lays Out Plan For Astroturf Rallies Against Climate Change Bill
A leaked memo sent by an oil industry group reveals a plan to create astroturf rallies at which industry employees posing as "citizens" will urge Congress to oppose climate change legislation.
The memo - sent by the American Petroleum Institute and obtained by Greenpeace, which sent it to reporters - urges oil companies to recruit their employees for events that will "put a human face on the impacts of unsound energy policy," and will urge senators to "avoid the mistakes embodied in the House climate bill."
Click here to read more on our site

Well, we have the Lord on our side.
"Training Citizens Who Are Well-Informed About Scientific Choices"
An astonishing convergence: A great number of countries, from China to India by way of Europe, worried by the decrease in scientific vocations, have undertaken an overhaul of their teaching of the sciences. With a change in perspective, however. The primary reason invoked to justify these reforms is no longer economic competitiveness, but the necessity of recreating a sort of democratic contract between citizens and scientific development.
Click here to read more on our site
Tomgram: Michael Klare, Energy Xtremism
The original article can be found on here:
EPA to declare CO2 a dangerous pollutant
Jennifer A. Dlouhy, Hearst Washington Bureau
(09-01) 04:00 PDT Washington -- Carbon dioxide will soon be declared a dangerous pollutant - a move that could help propel slow-moving climate-change legislation on Capitol Hill, the head of the Environmental Protection Agency said Monday.  EPA Administrator Lisa Jackson told reporters that a formal "endangerment finding," which would trigger federal regulations on greenhouse gas emissions, probably would "happen in the next months."

Enjoy it while you can...and vive le screed!

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