Even passing attention to the news media will make us realize that life everywhere in 2019 is hard. If you, like me and many of my friends, watch, listen to or read a lot about American politics and international disasters and politics, you may feel overwhelmed and hopeless much of the time. Part of our distress is figuring out if our President is telling lies, living in fantasies, or just not thinking clearly.
Now that the G7 Summit is over, and the President’s lies and stories over the days and nights of that gathering have been counted, the media have begun a concerted effort to point out and respond to some of the most lies and egregious stories the President has woven just last week.
One example is Lawrence O’Donnell, host of the nightly show, The Last Word (MSNBC, 10:00 EST). Last night, he took one of Trump’s ideas fantastical ideas, “Why don’t we drop an nuclear bomb into a hurricane to disrupt its course?” and invited an expert, Michael Mann, Distinguished Professor of Atmospheric Science at Penn State University, to answer his question. Here are Professor Mann’s answers to “Why don’t we just drop a bomb on a hurricane?”:
- a fully formed hurricane carries 100’s of trillions of watts of power, more than 10 megaton bombs dropped every 20 minutes: ergo, “It wouldn’t work anyway.”
- regularly dropping nuclear bombs into the ocean would do damage to ocean life from residual radiation as well as noise pollution.
- prevailing winds track to the the eastern coast of the US (including Maralago), carrying radiation over highly populated areas.
- on their way to the US, the winds pass over many inhabited islands killing many people in the short term and thousands in the long term.
Professor Mann goes on to say that if Trump really wants to work on the life-threatening issue of intensifying hurricanes and accompanying floods, he should accept the truth that our climate is warming, humans are the cause of it, and it will take a concerted effort with the other major nations in the world to stop the destruction of the planet.
One way we can influence the political atmosphere of our country is to track Trump’s lies and wacky ideas daily along with the readily available explanations of why they are lies or fantasies and share that information with friends and family.