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Something We've Never Seen

This weekend, something that we've never seen before is happening. Southern California is under a tropical storm warning.

In a new shade of catastrophe, San Diego and Los Angeles could suffer immense amounts of rainfall as Hurricane Hilary marches up the Baja coast and threatens the desert southwest. According to the National Weather Service, places like Las Vegas might get two years of rain in two days. Idaho and the northern Rockies could get flooding. You know they built Vegas in the desert, which, to me, has always seemed like a dipshit idea to begin with because, you know, the Colorado river USED to reach the ocean before farmers and urban sprawl in the southwest soaked it all up. Lake Meade, lately getting a reprieve, had almost dipped to the place where they wouldn't be able to run generators. Looking at the Lake Meade bathtub ring is astonishing. But that was yesterday.

You know, I always used to get a laugh when driving south in a winter storm. You'd get to, like, North Carolina and there would be a patina of snow on a road that would have been buried in Pennsylvania. And cars would be everywhere off the road south of the Manson-Nixon Line. We northerners understand driving in snow, okay? But Chapel Hill, NC hasn't got a clue about it and I was amused that this tiny amount of snow caused mayhem. It might not be so funny now. Now, Pennsylvania is climatalogically North Carolina. Chapel Hill might now be Augusta. Listen. The desert southwest doesn't get a lot of rain. In the way our southern friends are not used to snow, the desert southwest is not used to rain. The hardpan of the desert does not absorb water, instead creating runoff as arroyos turn suddenly dangerous. Hell, in Vegas, the drainage system is quite naturally used by the homeless as shelter from the heat. There stands to be a lot of dead bobbing to the surface... in the desert. Strange days, indeed. In California, where wildfires turned the Golden State into infernal hell-scapes at one turn (Remember when Trump said they needed to do better at raking their leaves?), biblical rains could at another turn transform those mountains into dangerous mudslides. What happens, friends, when one day a Cat 5 Hurricane, unheard of in the American Southwest, slams into Los Angeles? What happens when Hawaii burns? What happens when Canada burns? Oh, wait... These are the strange days brought to you by Exxon-Mobil. It is big oil that has damaged and polluted our world since they discovered it in Sykesville, Pa. It is big oil whose geologists, chemists and scientists have known about climate change since the 1950s but, just like the corporate death merchants of the tobacco industry, chose instead to market disinformation rather than own up to the massive destruction that they have wrought.

Now, we're in a pickle. The globe is heating up so fast that weird changes are afoot. Our glorious gas and oil men wrap their advertising in windmills while they plan compounds they think they can withstand the new world in. The Biden administration has gotten more investment in green energy than any administration to this point, but it isn't enough, it's getting late and we need a Hail Mary solution. My solution? Tax the fiends who caused it. Or draft them into funding and paying for (and owning) serious climate solutions. Or seize these companies the way the U.S. government seized banks when they crashed the world economy, or the way the U.S. government took over General Motors when they went tits up. It is time for the greedy billion and trillionaires to pay the tab they've run up. The answer, my friends, isn't cheaper gas... It's more expensive gas. And you need to suck it up until nobody wants gas and oil anymore.

You know, energy prices drove Jimmy Carter out of office in the 1970s. We made the wrong choice then. You know, instead of Al Gore at the turn of the century, who was warning us about the path we were on, we elected a faux Texan C-Student Oil Man. Great choice, America. Where would we be NOW if we chose an environmentalist in the year 2000 instead of a ticket interested in stealing as much of the world's oil supply as possible? We made the wrong choice then, too, and wasted our opportunity to make the changes the oil companies told us we didn't need. Yeah, fuck them. And then, when the chips were really down, we elected a lunk-head like Donald Trump to run out the clock for big oil. It isn't all the pussies he's grabbed, nor all the people he got to send him money, but the horrific energy policies that set us back another four years while the American West burned that pisses me off so much. Wrong choice again, people. You're driving down Interstate 80 in Pennsylvania and you can't breathe because 1,000 miles away Canada is on fire.

The homeless are floating to the surface from the city of Las Vegas's parched drainage system. People in Hawaii are running to take refuge in the ocean as fire hurls across their community at 80 miles per hour. New York City is under an air advisory because it looks the way Pittsburgh used to at the dawn of the steel industry. These hell-scapes are brought to you by Ronald Reagan, George W. Bush, Donald J. Trump and the people who own them, the Saudis. Don't Look Up, people. You're not gonna like what you see.

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