Our travels and global warming

August 18, 2009

We spent some time this summer in Chile. For part of that time we went down to Patagonia. We got down as far as 53 degrees lattitude. In the southern hemisphere, that’s like the latitude of James Bay, Canada in the northern hemisphere. Our objective was Lago Grey in Torres del Paine, a Chilean National Park. It’s supposed to be cold. And it was their winter. A Chilean researcher asked if it was cold enough for us. I said yes but actually it was in the 20s, hardly a bitterly cold day for those of us who live in the WAMC area. More significant, the guide at our hotel was explaining to us how far the glacier had retreated in just the last 10 years. It takes their boat a half hour more to get across the lake to the glacier. Out there, deep in the natural world, and as far away from urban life as you can get, they were telling us about global warming and the effect it is already having on them. It is affecting the glacier and wildlife that are objects of tourism. And it is threatening their water supply. Read the rest of this entry »

The Warren Court

August 13, 2009

Judge Sonia Sotomayor has now been confirmed as a Justice of the Supreme Court. I want to offer a reflection on what a Justice of the Court should do. Read the rest of this entry »

Don’t talk back to the cops

August 4, 2009

While we were away, President Obama was forced to claim that he had the greatest respect for the policeman who arrested Harvard Prof. Henry Louis Gates after the latter had established that he was in fact the owner of the home he was in. Although I have read the statements, I’m not going to try to look through the statements to try to figure out what really happened. But the situation brings up a very important issue that goes beyond the racial profiling claim and denial. Read the rest of this entry »

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