The Random Comic Strip

The Random Comic Strip

Words to live by...

"How beautiful it is to do nothing, and to rest afterward."

[Spanish Proverb]

Ius luxuriae publice datum est

(The right to looseness has been officially given)

"Everyone carries a part of society on his shoulders," wrote Ludwig von Mises, "no one is relieved of his share of responsibility by others. And no one can find a safe way for himself if society is sweeping towards destruction. Therefore everyone, in his own interest, must thrust himself vigorously into the intellectual battle."

Apparently, the crossword puzzle that disappeared from the blog, came back.

Thursday, September 19, 2013

Weather or Not ... It Matters

Since I live in Florida, I tend to pay attention to the weather. I cannot avoid that, actually... being a golfer. But I was interested in weather for much longer than when I began chasing the little white ball. I got interested when I was 18. When I got into surfing. I wanted to get an idea about surf conditions. I had no specific training, no foundation of knowledge, just the weather charts that were in the newspapers back then. Those charts showed much more information than we see today. They showed fronts (warm and cold), they showed isobars and in layers, and these could be used to discern patterns which could... in turn... allow the average person to make a general prediction about the near future in terms of weather.

I still look at the weather and try to get an idea of what is coming. There is a lot less information about it, however, than we used to get. I do not know why. If I was paranoid, I'd say "they" don't want us to know. In spite of being a little paranoid (after years of "them" being out to get me), I think it is merely protecting one's job. After all, if we could learn to predict weather as well as the meteorologists then why would we need them? Well, of course, you and I know that these are the guys who used to develop those charts. But your local TV weatherman being essential? Not so much.

I worry more about hurricanes. Because I live in Florida, because Florida is basically a big sandbar sticking out into a large body of water. And so I pay attention to the yearly hurricane season predictions. Just out of curiosity, mind you. I know that the NOAA cannot tell us with any accuracy whatsoever, which storms will hit land and Florida in particular.

On Tuesday, I read this article on the Accuweather website:

2013 Atlantic Hurricane Season Not Over Yet

You should read it also. Because it reveals a lot about these people who proclaim their expertise. It talks about why the prediction was off by a bunch. Let me quote:

According to Hurricane Expert Dan Kottlowski, "A large area of high pressure over the central Atlantic has been very strong and very good at driving dry air southward into the tropics into September."

It is moist air that aids in building storms in the Atlantic.

I immediately asked myself, "Why couldn't they have predicted this?" The "large area of high pressure" that is. The conditions which create such things are known.  Maybe they didn't take the possibility of this high pressure area into account. Maybe the conditions changed as we went into the season and that was a surprise.

But I cannot help thinking that this was a CYA piece.

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