Reject Climate Misinformation

Reject Climate Misinformation

When changing minds you often need to change hearts first.


Reject Climate Misinformation

By D. S. Mitchell

Ants at a Picnic

Misinformation proliferates like ants at a picnic, while truth seems to lumber along aimlessly. Such distortion is often hard to fight on major issues such as climate change. The hazards of ignoring or misunderstanding climate change are too dangerous to let this continue. Sadly, two thirds of the American public admits they rarely discuss global warming. It is more important than ever to help people understand how dangerous the phenomenon is to the planet and us; her population. We must start talking about it, and keep talking about it.

Comfort Zone

Changing minds is not an easy task. Each of us tend to hide out in our own information bubble, fending off ideas that threaten our beliefs. The Environmental Defense Fund in a recent article in their Solutions’ magazine offered six ways to fight climate misinformation. Frequently we will hear a friend or loved one spread fake news and want to speak up, but are uncomfortable in confronting the lies and misinformation.  EDF’s Misinformation Brigade has some suggestions to help navigate the touchy subject of climate change and other hard issues confronting our world. Creating tactful and inclusive engagement is essential. Here are EDF’s tips on how to help correct climate change misinformation.

Friendly Ground

It is a proven fact that people are more likely to take in information from someone they know and trust than a stranger. So, shut down the PC. The internet is not where you will sway hearts and minds. To have the most impact, stick with your inner circle. Furthermore, no one likes to be publicly pressured, so if you want to make the biggest impact, do it in private.

Confirmation Bias

‘Confirmation Bias’ is the psychological mechanism that confirms the content of information we as individuals take in from the world around us that supports our already formed worldview. All that means is that we look for information to support our already formed opinions.  Knowing that can help us change thinking. So, remember, before you make any statement, pro or con, ask questions of your friend or family member. Find out how they feel about the “news” they are sharing. It is important that you as a maker of change start by acknowledging their feelings. Listen to what they say, it will make them more wiling to listen to your point of view.

Appeal to Fear

Definitions are important. “Misinformation” is defined as ‘inaccurate or misleading’ information. On the other hand, “disinformation” is characterized as ‘deliberately deceptive.” The purveyors of disinformation use emotion-usually anger-to appeal to people who may already be feeling afraid or powerless. That sense of powerlessness thrives during periods of social unrest, war, and pandemics. It is important that you recognize that dynamic when engaging in conversations. Engage your kindness gene and use kindness and tolerance not irritation and anger.

Shared Values

Start with shared values. Avoid condemnation. Encourage the conversation with an imagined future world where kids have clean water and air, where we are energy independent, where there are still wilderness areas. Devise a plan to work together to make that wished for world a reality.

Getting it Straight

It is important to understand  that we are all being bombarded by fake news and disinformation. All you have to do is open Facebook. Admit it up front, that you might have some things wrong; it may help get a conversation started. Maybe you and your family member, or friend, could make it your business to research “news sources” and “facts”. EDF Action’s website can be helpful in finding links and tools  to verify content. Lead Stories might be a more comfortable site for conservatives to use when verifying information. Just commit to verify all content before you post the “news”; or spread the information.


Have respect for the topic, and make sure that you are only sharing true, correct and verifiable information. Let’s make sure we are part of the solution, not part of the problem. If you spot something particularly harmful on social media, report it to and they will  contact social media companies and address the disinformation and lobby for its removal as inaccurate, or in the least tag it as inaccurate.

Resources: (Check out the EDF guide to identify and combat disinformation). (Join the Misinformation Brigade and you will receive texts on dangerous misinformation and what you can do to help stop its spread). (Check out this conservative fact checking site).



Trump Policies Threaten National Park System

Trump Policies Threaten National Park System

D. S. Mitchell

The National Park Service just entered its second century of existence.  The National Park system “features over 400 stunning landscapes, iconic historic sites, battlefields, and cultural treasures that define our country, its evolving story and the enduring legacy we are called upon to uphold,” a recent National Park Foundation informational declared.  I have chosen a dozen National Park sites to highlight, today. Places that must be protected for future generations.

We have been entrusted with so much natural beauty and we cannot shrug our responsibility to future generations.  We must protect these treasured locations and prevent Trump & Associates from raping the environment.  Please join the National Park Foundation, Environmental Defense Fund, Sierra Club and dozens more organizations that are hitting all the alarm bells and filing lawsuits against the Trump Administration to stop these fossil fuel profiteers before they can start drilling, logging, and fracking on these precious lands. Join the Resistance against the environmental attack. Stop the Trump wrecking crew before the damage becomes irreversible.

Over the last several weeks I have hit the dangers to the environment button pretty hard. I promise this is my last post on the environment and, or, climate change for a while. Please, please, please give to any of the organizations fighting to save our threatened wild places. There is so much flim-flam, and “keep your eye on the pea” that I am worried that what is happening behind closed doors will decimate our park system before the public even finds out that it has happened.

So, with the beauty of our country at stake due to Trump’s Administration intention to dig, plow, pump, drill, log and frack every corner of the planet, starting on our public lands. Because of the danger,  I thought it might be a nice reminder of our nation’s beauty by taking a short tour of 12 of our most remarkable National Parks.

Badlands National Park, South Dakota:  Established on Jan. 29th, 1939 the Badlands National Park protects 242, 796 acres of southwestern South Dakota.  The park terrain is dramatic with sprawling grasslands, deep canyons and towering rock spires.. The park is habitat for Bighorn Sheep, American Bison and small rodents such as the prairie dog. Inside the park at Fossil Exhibit Trail fossils recovered within the park are on display for visitors.

Yosemite National Park, California: Yosemite was first protected in 1864. Yosemite is famous for its waterfalls and steep peaks. Within 1,200 square miles there are deep valleys, grand meadows, ancient giant sequoia, and a vast wilderness area.  Yosemite is a World Heritage Site and entertains 5 million tourists annually.

National Mall and Memorial Parks, Washington, D.C.:     A centerpiece of the Mall is the Lincoln Memorial, an enduring symbol of freedom.  The memorial was designed after an ancient Greek temple.  The 36 outer fluted columns represent the number of states in the Union at the time of Lincoln’s death.  The “park/mall” is in downtown Washington, D.C. Unofficially it is the area between the Lincoln Memorial on the West and East to the U.S. Capitol grounds.  The mall contains the Smithsonian, art galleries, cultural institutions and many memorials, sculptures and statues. Some of the greatest assemblage of humanity in giant protests have occurred on the National Mall.

Glacier National Park, Montana: Glacier National Park was established May 11, 1910. The park covers 1,583 square miles of wilderness in Montana’s Rocky Mountains.  Glacier carved peaks and valleys run all the way to the Canadian border.  There are more than 700 miles of hiking trails. Diverse wildlife include Grizzly bears and Mountain goats. The park is known as the “Crown of the Continent.” Glacier is the headwaters for streams that flow to the Pacific Ocean, the Gulf of Mexico, and to Hudson Bay.  What happens at Glacier affects waters in a huge section of North America.

Great Smoky Mountains National Park: The Great Smoky Mountains National Park cover 816 square miles straddling the border between North Carolina and Tennessee.  Lush forests where wildflowers bloom year round is a delightful park that offers camping and hiking among rivers, creeks and waterfalls.  The Great Smoky Mountains National Park entertains more than 11 million visitors annually. Rainfall rushes down the mountainsides of Great Smoky Mountains National Park, creating an abundance of waterfalls . Visitors will find cascades and waterfalls on nearly every stream or river in the park.

Gettysburg National Military Park, Pennsylvania: The park protects and interprets the landscape of the 1863 Battle of Gettysburg.   The park commemorates the largest battle fought during the American Civil War. It was after the tragedy at Gettysburg where so many died on both sides that Abraham Lincoln came to give one of the most famous and memorable speeches of all time, forever known as the “Gettysburg Address.” The park is about 9.5 square acres.  The park welcomes over a million visitors annually.

Crater Lake National Park, Oregon: Crater Lake is 1950 ft deep. The lake was formed when Mount Mazama erupted nearly 8,000 years ago and then collapsed, forming the lake.  The park is the only National Park in the state of Oregon and entertains over 800,000 visitors each year.  The lake is fed only by rain and snowfall and is a photographer’s dream blue. The park was established by Teddy Roosevelt in May 1902 and encompasses over 183,000 sq acres.

Dry Tortugas National Park, Florida: The Dry Tortugas is a small archipelago of coral islands which are the most western and most isolated of the Florida Keys.  The park is 99% water and is located 68 miles west of Key West, Florida.  The area is home to sea turtles, and multiple sea birds.  The seven small islands in the Gulf of Mexico offers picturesque blue waters, superlative coral reefs and marine life, and the historic Fort Jefferson and is skin divers paradise.

Grand Canyon National Park, Arizona: The canyon is one mile deep and 277 miles long.  The Grand Canyon was formed during six million years of geological and erosion activity. Teddy Roosevelt famously said, it is “the one great sight which every American should see.” The park was established in February 1919, and covers over 1900 square miles. Layered bands of red rock frame the Colorado River at the bottom of a mile deep canyon.  The Grand Canyon is one of the most visited tourist destinations in the United States accommodating more than 6 million visitors annually.

Grand Teton National Park, Wyoming:
Located in NW Wyoming the Grand Teton National Park encompasses 310,000 acres.  The park was established in 1929 and entertains 3.5 million annual tourists.  The park includes the 4,ooo meter Grand Teton Peak and the valley known as Jackson Hole.  Grand Teton Park is linked to the nearby Yellowstone National Park by the John D. Rockefeller, Jr. Memorial Parkway.  Rugged mountain peaks rising above a rich landscape with extraordinary wildlife, pristine lakes, and alpine terrain are the Grand Tetons.  The park provides 200 miles of trails for hiking, fishing and back country camping. Exploring the Snake River and experiencing the serenity of the region is memory making.

Arcadia National Park, Maine:
The Arcadia National Park consists of 49,000 + acre Atlantic coast recreation area, primarily on Maine’s rugged coast including Mount Desert Island.  The landscape is woodland, rocky beaches and glacier scoured granite peaks such as Cadillac Mountain, the highest point on the Atlantic coast of the United States.  Visitors come to bike historic carriage roads, fish the waterways and enjoy the abundant wildlife, including moose, bear, whales and sea birds.The park was established in 1919.

Arches National Park, Utah: Described as a “red rock wonderland,” Arches National Park is a landscape of contrasting colors, landforms and textures. The park has more than 2,000 natural stone arches, as well as hundreds of soaring pinnacles, massive fins, and giant balanced rocks.” The Arches National Park is north of Moab, Utah. The 119.8 square miles park is bordered by the Colorado river in the southeast. The park entertains over 1.5 million visitors annually. Park was established in 1929.

Calamity  Politics is a progressive political blog.  We post mostly everyday.  Our focus is on the U.S. political scene. Our intent is to present relevant and engaging analysis and commentary on the headline news of the day. Please leave a comment.  We enjoy reading what our readers have to say.

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More Of Trump’s Plan To Eviscerate The EPA

More On Trump’s Plan To Eviscerate The Epa

D. S. Mitchell

Trump promised during the campaign there would only be “little tidbits” left of the EPA when he was done with the agency. He has, now as president used every device available to make that campaign promise a reality.  Among some of his actions has been to take steps to revoke the Clean Power Plan and delay implementation of mercury and air toxics standards.  Additionally, there is the 2018 budget.  Trump’s proposed budget slashes EPA funding by 31%, effectively crippling the department.


1.) CLIMATE RESEARCH: EPA’s Science Advisory Board budget would be slashed by 84%, due to sweeping cuts to scientific programs.  People will be more vulnerable to, and less ready for extreme weather events. Lack of data will hinder the ability of other agencies to monitor Green House Gas emissions and forecast floods and hurricanes.

2.) STATE AIR QUALITY PROGRAMS: Significant funding for local monitoring comes from the EPA.  It allows health officials to warn of “Code Red” days when the air is dangerous for people with asthma. Trump budget would cut funding by one-third. An estimated 125 million Americans live in communities with unhealthy levels of air pollution. Local governments will be charged with maintaining air quality but may lack the money to do it.

3.) CRIMINAL AND CIVIL ENFORCEMENT: Trump argues that states should oversee their own state’s environmental laws.  The president wants to cut EPA’s enforcement office by 40%. Trump’s budget would cut the grants that allow states to conduct that enforcement by 45%. Fees, fines and penalties will no longer be assessed or collected.

4.) SUPERFUND CLEANUP: There are more than 1300 toxic Superfund waste sites and 450,000 brownfield hazardous sites across the United States.  President Trump’s budget cuts would reduce the Superfund cleanup program by nearly $200,000,000.  Towns like Amesbury, MA that depend on federal funding to keep their citizens safe from groundwater contamination that will suffer from projected cutbacks.  De-funding the EPA also threatens redevelopment and restoration in many communities across the country.

5.) REGIONAL WATER QUALITY: Trump’s projected cuts would eliminate $400,000,000 for programs to clean up America’s greatest yet most threatened bodies of water–the Great Lakes, Chesapeake Bay and Puget Sound.  It is expected that critical estuaries and the fishing industry that depends on them–like Chesapeake Bay crabs and oysters will be seriously harmed.

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EPA Cuts Cause Potential For Real Harm

EPA Cuts Cause Potential For Real Harm

D. S. Mitchell

Calamity Politics is a progressive political blog that’s main intention is to improve people’s lives. I’m here again, uncensored and irreverent, raising hell and screaming for attention. I know I’m about 3200 miles from Washington, D.C. but I pray people are aware of the perilous and irresponsible attack on the EPA that is taking place at the hands of the Trump Administration.  The Environmental Defense Fund states flatly, “No federal agency has been singled out for such a large and pernicious budget cut as the EPA”.

Approximately 90% of the American people support strong environmental protections.  It is an all hands on deck emergency if we will be able to stop President Trump’s efforts to gut the EPA budget, thus eliminating many core environmental safeguards. The government has been transferred into the hands of anti-environment extremists whose goal is profit through fossil fuel extraction over the lives of wildlife and our historic national park system.

Trump and the Congress seem to be on a mission to kill our national parks and destroy our environmental protections.  Many lobbyists are sent to Washington paid to convince legislators that relaxing restrictions on the millions of acres of National Parks land would be an economic boom for the country.  The goal seems to be directed toward shifting control from the federal government to the individual states, where those treasured resources can be sold, or licensed to the highest bidder for the systematic extraction of gold, silver, oil, gas, coal, and timber.

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