BAN SCIENCE  1:30 pm May 30, 2012

NC Developers Working Hard To Prevent Scientists From Making Sea Level Forecasts

by Jim Newell

To be known as DrownTown from now onNorth Carolina science people have determined that coastal sea levels are expected to rise 1 meter by 2100 — far more than they’ve traditionally risen, due to the expected impacts of climate change. But developers in 20 coastal counties, see, have determined that such a rise would be bad for development prospects. So they’ve lobbied the state to lower that forecast to only 15 inches instead, because why not? Fifteen’s a nice number. Arbitrary, sure, but can’t the scientists just shut up already?

Via the News & Observer, here’s the exciting news about North Carolina businessmen telling sea levels to chill out and stop rising so much, at least on paper:

State lawmakers are considering a measure that would limit how North Carolina prepares for sea-level rise, which many scientists consider one of the surest results of climate change.

Federal authorities say the North Carolina coast is vulnerable because of its low, flat land and thin fringe of barrier islands. A state-appointed science panel has reported that a 1-meter rise in sea level is likely by 2100.

The calculation, prepared for the N.C. Coastal Resources Commission, was intended to help the state plan for rising water that could threaten 2,000 square miles. Critics say it could thwart economic development on just as large a scale.

A coastal economic development group called NC-20 attacked the report, insisting the scientific research it cited is flawed. The science panel last month confirmed its findings, recommending that they be reassessed every five years.

But NC-20, named for the 20 coastal counties, appears to be winning its campaign to undermine them.

The Coastal Resources Commission agreed to delete references to planning benchmarks – such as the 1-meter prediction – and new development standards for areas likely to be inundated.

The N.C. Division of Emergency Management, which is using a $5 million federal grant to analyze the impact of rising water, lowered its worst-case scenario prediction from 1 meter (about 39 inches) to 15 inches by 2100.

The Republican state legislators are cooking up their own solution to this problem of evil scientists trying to make predictions based on scientific models: Don’t allow them to consider climate change in their models:

They circulated a bill that authorizes only the coastal commission to calculate how fast the sea is rising. It said the calculations must be based only on historic trends – leaving out the accelerated rise that climate scientists widely expect this century if warming increases and glaciers melt.

The bill, a substitute for an unrelated measure the N.C. House passed last year, has not been introduced. State legislative officials say they can’t predict how it might be changed, or when or whether it will emerge.

Also too, we heard from Jesus that the sea levels will never rise. Build away!

[News & Observer via Scientific American]

 

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{ 202 comments }

MittsHairHelmet May 30, 2012 at 1:31 pm

Everyone knows the ocean has a strong liberal bias.

Oblios_Cap May 30, 2012 at 2:28 pm

Rip Tides, Rip Torn. Who can explain it?

yrbmegr May 30, 2012 at 2:39 pm

It's ok. Only rich people buy that coastal property, and they're insured. So NC-20 is just defrauding insurance companies, at least until the insurance companies wise up and quit insuring NC coastal residents. After which sales of coastal property in NC will drop 25% over night, and property values along the coast by 30%. The only question is whether all this happens before the 20' storm surge or after.

nounverb911 May 30, 2012 at 1:32 pm

I hope NC bans hurricane forecasts too, also.

Come here a minute May 30, 2012 at 1:42 pm

And volcano monitoring. Fuck that shit.

NorthStarSpanx May 30, 2012 at 1:48 pm

And fruit fly research.

Terry May 30, 2012 at 2:01 pm

Walter Jones, Jr., the U.S. Representative for a large portion of the NC coast is pretty much against supporting any kind of government outside of Camp Lejeune (located in his district).

I wouldn't be surprised if he was in favor of cutting forecasting budgets.

Barb May 30, 2012 at 1:33 pm

They won't believe in climate change until their front yard is littered with shrimp with no eyes.

Designer_Radio May 30, 2012 at 1:45 pm

Nah, that's just when they start blaming Obama and apologizing to BP.

Baconzgood May 30, 2012 at 2:01 pm

I'm going to rate that (on a scale from 1-10) a WIN!

Barb May 30, 2012 at 2:09 pm

Thanks Baconz!

Terry May 30, 2012 at 2:06 pm

Or they could be like Billy Tauzan, who represented Barataria and Terrebonne in south Louisiana for years. He wouldn't support coastal restoration unless it was strictly business related and his district literally washed away during his tenure in office. Billy left office and took a fat job with the pharmaceutical industry as a lobbyist and hasn't thought about south Louisiana since.

In his Hell, he's going to be slowly sinking into anoxic mud and slime unable to free himself. People will walk by, he'll beg for help, and they'll walk on.

SorosBot May 30, 2012 at 1:34 pm

So if my (hypothetical) doctor tells me I have cancer, I can just release my own study that says I don't have cancer, and then I'll be perfectly healthy! Sweet.

Abernathy May 30, 2012 at 1:52 pm

If you don't release your own study, I'm sure some nice group of businesspeople will help you out with their own commissioned study, provided they get first dibs on selling off your organs.

Generation[redacted] May 30, 2012 at 1:58 pm

Treating your cancer could hurt your economic development.

MittBorg May 30, 2012 at 2:00 pm

Listen, you four-eyed little elitist edjumacated science freak — you DON'T release a study! That's for you elitists! You have FAITH. That's all you need to do. Don't cost no taxpayer dollars, neither.

Crank_Tango May 30, 2012 at 2:15 pm

Historically, you didn't have cancer, so WIN.

MissTaken May 30, 2012 at 1:36 pm

Drown baby drown!

Oblios_Cap May 30, 2012 at 1:37 pm

I'll bet that the average North Carolinian will soon experience the same sort of reasonable homeowner's insurance rates that we have in FL.

But, on the plus side, Mayberry will soon be oceanfront property.

MittBorg May 30, 2012 at 2:02 pm

I don't know if you'll even be able to *get* homeowners' insurance in high-risk areas, soon. Certainly, Californians are facing the prospect of having to create a state insurance pool to insure those who build in wildfire/earthquake/coastal areas.

Crank_Tango May 30, 2012 at 2:16 pm

I'm not worried, I live a street away from a fault-line in the Oakland hills….um, two out of three ain't bad?

MittBorg May 30, 2012 at 2:30 pm

Don't think the Hayward fault's been active in quite a while, has it? Not since 1989, maybe?

Guppy May 30, 2012 at 3:46 pm

Regulate insurance? But we have the best insurance in the world! DEATH PANELS!!11

MittBorg May 30, 2012 at 5:09 pm

Srsly. These people. Thick as two short bricks.

jjdaddyo May 30, 2012 at 2:10 pm

That's the only thing that's going to stop coastal development. Insurance companies have to rely on science to set rates. So if they see the risk, but the State Insurance commissioner won't let them raise them, they just say: see ya! Then, unfortunately, the real estate lobby, etc., will force the State to create a high risk pool, which means all the citizens of NC (and the Federal Govt will probably pitch in too) will be on the hook when the big one hits the outer banks.

Oblios_Cap May 30, 2012 at 2:27 pm

Well, we also have the under-capitalized companies in Flori-duh to cover us, so to speak.

Guppy May 30, 2012 at 3:47 pm

Like Citizens'!

MittBorg May 30, 2012 at 2:31 pm

Presumably, not *everyone* in NC is so stupid that they won't realize that?

Guppy May 30, 2012 at 3:48 pm

Until the smart ones move out.

MittBorg May 30, 2012 at 5:10 pm

We'll have to let it secede right after that happens.

Redhead May 30, 2012 at 2:59 pm

Already there… google NC and The Beach Plan…

MittBorg May 30, 2012 at 3:27 pm

Thank you, I see that.

Jimmyone May 30, 2012 at 2:33 pm

I moved to Western Colorado (7000') above sea level, thinking that California would fall into the ocean during one of those Big Quakes. Now with the oceans rising I still hold out hope for beach front property. I guess my hope of tearing down my 770 square foot hovel for one with a car elevator is now in peril.

BarackMyWorld May 30, 2012 at 1:37 pm

If God had wanted us to know about rising water levels, He'd warn us like he did with Noah!

MissTaken May 30, 2012 at 1:38 pm

The developers are looking at this ass-backwards. They should instead market Tennessee as 'Upcoming Oceanfront Property'.

Ruhe May 30, 2012 at 1:58 pm

Old joke about the difference between Tennessee and North Carolina (usually shared in conversations about the two states' collegiate sports teams):

Tennessee and North Carolina are like a mirror image of each other they're so much alike. Only North Carolina has a beautiful beach at the end and Tennessee has Memphis.

prommie May 30, 2012 at 2:13 pm

Whenever the newspapers around here start talking about the beaches "disappearing" due to erosion, I am always like, "what, there is still a beach, its just closer to me now. Now somebody get those houses off it, that ain't safe."

Clancy_Pants May 30, 2012 at 1:38 pm

Logical. Along those lines they might oughta hire Sheriff Arpaio to keep the El Nino's out.

Designer_Radio May 30, 2012 at 1:43 pm

He'll dye the ocean pink to shame it into not rising so queerly.

MittBorg May 30, 2012 at 2:07 pm

Maybe BP's multitude of eyeless shrimp will rise to the surface, which should have the same effect.

MittBorg May 30, 2012 at 2:02 pm

I wonder how he'd look in a King Canute costume?

Callyson May 30, 2012 at 1:38 pm

The calculation, prepared for the N.C. Coastal Resources Commission, was intended to help the state plan for rising water that could threaten 2,000 square miles. Critics say it could thwart economic development on just as large a scale.

Next proposition from the critics: build a high rise along the San Andreas Fault. What could possibly go wrong? Earthquake? Hey, stop thwarting economic development, commie!

GemlikeFlame May 30, 2012 at 7:15 pm

While I'm not aware of any highrises built across the fault, at one time Zilog's first fab was smack on top of the fault as it ran through Cupertino (I know this because there are a series of small ponds that trace the fault through Bubb Road and Fab 1 was right between two of them.) Considering the intense nastiness of the chemicals used to produce silicon wafers, a breach of the containment systems would have killed everything that moved for a block or or more in all directions and permanently polluted the groundwater to the poison stage. Cupertino's water supply comes from a reservoir a couple miles or so away. Pollute that and the entire area becomes uninhabitable. LD50 of arsine is about 0.05ppm/m3, it takes a ridiculously small amount to be fatal.

GemlikeFlame May 30, 2012 at 7:24 pm

Fortunately, that fab was dismantled about 15 years prior to the Loma Prieta quake. Anything on the fault or near it got a good shaking, it emptied my book cases and put my liquor collection on the ground. Broke open a bottle of Jack Daniels, most of whose contents ended up inside my first Macintosh. I finally got it all cleaned up, but every time I booted it after that it gave off a great bourbony aroma.

BaldarTFlagass May 30, 2012 at 1:38 pm

I've never checked, but I don't guess there are many giant scientific leaps that have been made by Republican scientists. Except maybe in weapons.

Ruhe May 30, 2012 at 1:59 pm

Edward Teller's last weapon design: The Global Warming Killing Bomb.

Chichikovovich May 30, 2012 at 2:08 pm

Yes, I have a hunch that Edward Teller was a Republican.

George Skullfry May 31, 2012 at 12:52 am

I don't think "Republican" is a strong enough term.

prommie May 30, 2012 at 2:14 pm

Phlogiston? Ether?

carlgt1 May 30, 2012 at 2:44 pm

surely the "science" of Mesmerism is practiced to this day by Repugs, through the hypno-toad known as Roger Ailes (for one)…..

Guppy May 30, 2012 at 3:51 pm

Physics and chemistry degrees don't pay for themselves.

OldWhiteLies May 30, 2012 at 1:38 pm

Yes, because of course we can legislate away our climate issues.

They'll still be shaking their fists at the climate studies when their fists are the only thing still visible above the water.

sullivanst May 30, 2012 at 1:51 pm

Well, we could pass cap&trade or a carbon tax.

Designer_Radio May 30, 2012 at 1:40 pm

How can we work transvaginal ultrasound wanding into these wonderful bills?

nounverb911 May 30, 2012 at 1:43 pm

Every time the oceans rise, Virginia Foxx gets one?

MittBorg May 30, 2012 at 2:08 pm

The techs will demand hazard pay.

UW8316154 May 30, 2012 at 2:02 pm

Transvaginal ultrasound wanding rules are always tacked onto the very end of a federal highway spending bill, doy.

HogeyeGrex May 30, 2012 at 1:40 pm

3 is a much better value of pi, also, too.

nounverb911 May 30, 2012 at 1:42 pm

Apple or rhubarb?

HogeyeGrex May 30, 2012 at 1:57 pm

Wool.

sullivanst May 30, 2012 at 1:54 pm

Also e. Then you don't have to remember two numbers!

In addition, the fine structure constant is 1/150. Just Say No! to prime denominators greater than 5.

UW8316154 May 30, 2012 at 2:02 pm

T

noodlesalad May 30, 2012 at 1:41 pm

Galileo had the Catholic Church. We have Republican chambers of commerce and county commissioners AND the freaking Christianists. Don't leave out Noah's Flood in your historical trends, you ignoramuses.

Designer_Radio May 30, 2012 at 1:48 pm

Genocidal Flood every 6,000 years? That might average out worse than the 1 meter…

noodlesalad May 30, 2012 at 1:57 pm

There should be a way to utilize this to turn the Christianists and Corporatists against each other. Of course, one would just start selling Ark kits made from imaginary gopher trees.

MittBorg May 30, 2012 at 2:09 pm

Wait, I thought the plural of ignoramus was ignorami …

noodlesalad May 30, 2012 at 4:07 pm

When it's a conspiracy, it should be ignoramati.

MittBorg May 30, 2012 at 5:06 pm

Ha! Upfisted for GreatestConspiracyTheoryEver reference! How many people have read Illuminati! at all, these days?

LettucePrey May 30, 2012 at 1:41 pm

A meter? What is that in English?

RedneckMuslin May 30, 2012 at 1:48 pm

Metre?

BaldarTFlagass May 30, 2012 at 2:03 pm

Meat 'er?

UW8316154 May 30, 2012 at 2:03 pm

Sounds socialist to me! Why do scientists hate Amercia?

sullivanst May 30, 2012 at 2:03 pm

In English? A metre (since we're not talking road signs).

JustPixelz May 30, 2012 at 2:19 pm

It's part of a "speed-o-meter". I guess the scientists want us to drive more.

Callyson May 30, 2012 at 1:42 pm

They circulated a bill that authorizes only the coastal commission to calculate how fast the sea is rising. It said the calculations must be based only on historic trends…

Well, that makes sense in wingnut land. They hate change, you know–pesky blahs making a fuss about slavery, uppity womenz demanding the right to vote, those gheyz wanting marriage equality. So they're not about to tolerate that made – up business about global warming causing a change as well.

head/desk

Generation[redacted] May 30, 2012 at 2:00 pm

They're going to return ocean levels to the 1950s, when America was Great.

Oblios_Cap May 30, 2012 at 1:43 pm

"It's an infinity pool. Yeah, that's the ticket."

Designer_Radio May 30, 2012 at 1:49 pm

Ooooh, SWANKY!

northernbassist May 30, 2012 at 4:01 pm

Oh, sure–just bring in an infinity pool. And deal with THIS: http://tinyurl.com/7hbrb3a

BaldarTFlagass May 30, 2012 at 1:43 pm

*shakes head in disgust and amazement*

stupid motherfuckers.

MittBorg May 30, 2012 at 2:14 pm

Shortsightedly greedy enough to sell out their own interests if it means making a penny more this quarter. Frank Zappa said that these people (whom he makes fun of alla time, but especially in Flakes) would sell the country down the river if they thought they could make a profit from it.

Goonemeritus May 30, 2012 at 1:43 pm

On the other hand what are the chances anyone will want to live in North Carolina 88 years from now? At the rate they are politically regressing by that time they should be a full blown feudal hell hole.

boobookitteh May 30, 2012 at 1:43 pm

This is an excellent idea. They should revisit the "laws" of gravity and thermodynamics while they're at it. If they repeal gravity, we can fix the obesity problem because we'll all be lighter!

It's science.

Ruhe May 30, 2012 at 1:55 pm

Not so fast tubby! That bill hasn't made it through committee yet.

SorosBot May 30, 2012 at 1:55 pm

And that whole universal speed limit is such bullshit; I'd like to travel faster than the speed of light, so let's just rewrite the rules so we can!

FNMA May 30, 2012 at 2:18 pm

"Gravity" is merely a "theory." Duh.

Slim_Pickins May 30, 2012 at 1:44 pm

The one meter estimate was unscientific because no realtors were involved in its calculation.

BaldarTFlagass May 30, 2012 at 1:47 pm

Plus, metric. Socialism.

OldWhiteLies May 30, 2012 at 1:57 pm

Yes. Indeed.

Because, just as one example, taking the most common effing molecule on the planet (H2O) and deciding that when it freezes is ZERO, and when it boils is 100; well that's just beyond lunacy.

And Amercia is ONE OF THREE countries still clinging to the imperial measurement system. And to think I get ridiculed because all my dive gear is set up for metric. Cuz, uh yeah, some of us do actually like to dive in other countries.

Did I mention we can thank st ronnie (ptewie) for kibashing our well-planned move to metric?

MittBorg May 30, 2012 at 2:15 pm

There's an awful — and I *do* mean awful — lot we can thank st. ronnie of raygunz for.

OldWhiteLies May 30, 2012 at 2:22 pm

(pssst, go to intensedebate.com/features for your text altering pleasurz)

sullivanst May 30, 2012 at 2:40 pm

Because who wants to divide by 10 when dividing by 12 or 16 is soooooo much easier?

Slim_Pickins May 30, 2012 at 2:46 pm

Count von Fahrenheit was much more rigorous. He left his thermometer outside for 1 year. The lowest temperature in Berlin, during that year, became 0, while the high became 100. Talk about reproducibility.

OldWhiteLies May 30, 2012 at 3:25 pm

I find I must correct myself. The UK does still cling to some of the imperial system – it is theirs after all. But of course if one uses the common person baseline CARS & TOOLS they have long since moved to a metric standard.

So, thusly, I must amend my previous to: ONE OF THREE (and a half). Should you be curious, the others are Liberia and Burma.

GortRay May 30, 2012 at 3:12 pm

Maybe they think that a meter IS 15 inches.

MittBorg May 30, 2012 at 3:14 pm

Hmm. *That* would explain a lot. (Rewrites "Why Women Are Bad at Math" joke.)

prommie May 30, 2012 at 1:44 pm

Whats all the fucking fuss? I mean, what kind of chance is there that anyone will be alive in 2100 to measure it, anyway?

MittBorg May 30, 2012 at 2:15 pm

At the rate we're going, not a fucking prayer.

Poindexter718 May 30, 2012 at 1:44 pm

How could a report from a bunch of science dorks impede economic development? Surely the wise and invisible hand of the markets will see right thru their "data" and "models."

GuanoFaucet May 30, 2012 at 1:44 pm

I reject your reality and substitute my own!

frostbitefalls May 30, 2012 at 1:45 pm

Oh, but cue the chorus of "Where's FEMA?" once they're flooded out!

UW8316154 May 30, 2012 at 2:05 pm

Shh – it's all part of the secret long-range Nobama plan to move the Real Americans into the FEMA death camps.

MittBorg May 30, 2012 at 2:16 pm

It's never gonna happen, and it shouldn't, but I would LERVE to be there when the chorus of "You defunded it, you fucking morons!" arises in response.

Guppy May 30, 2012 at 3:53 pm

I dunno. Cantor stayed pretty ideologically consistent after that recent VA temblor.

LettucePrey May 30, 2012 at 1:45 pm

Global warming is a hoax, sheeple! Al Gore is just sweating because he's fat!

Designer_Radio May 30, 2012 at 1:51 pm

LOOK! It snowed in some places last winter. CHECK! MATE!

SorosBot May 30, 2012 at 1:45 pm

They're idiots, babe; it's a wonder that they still know how to breathe.

UW8316154 May 30, 2012 at 2:05 pm

Oh, I read that as "breed"….carry on.

MittBorg May 30, 2012 at 2:35 pm

Unfortunately, breeding don't take a whole lot of knowing. More's the pity.

LettucePrey May 30, 2012 at 3:38 pm

Blood on the Tracks LIBEL!

(No, seriously, Bob Dylan references are always full of win.)

Baconzgood May 30, 2012 at 1:47 pm

North Carolina state legislators
http://media.photobucket.com/image/hear%20no%20ev

MittBorg May 30, 2012 at 2:18 pm

Oh, thank you Baconz! (kisses the top of Baconz' pink head)

I clicked that link, as usual, without thinking, and then had a horrible moment of flamingpdoggedly fear, knowing what Wonketz' links usually lead to. Thank you for making it so … normal.

Baconzgood May 30, 2012 at 3:04 pm

It's rare that I post a safe for work link.

MittBorg May 30, 2012 at 3:15 pm

You think I don't know this? It's rare that I kiss the top of someone's head in gratitude.

Blueb4sunrise May 30, 2012 at 1:48 pm

Errr, NC 20 peoples…..it is the historic trend.
http://tidesandcurrents.noaa.gov/sltrends/sltrend

ManchuCandidate May 30, 2012 at 1:48 pm

Since it was memorial day weekend, let me put it into terms that you might understand NC…

In 1950 during a small police action not in US Amercia, MacArthur's Chief/Chef of Intelligence Charles Willoughby spent a lot of time shaving down his own staff's intelligence estimates because it didn't jive with what he wanted to tell the great one, er, Dougie. He didn't believe the Red Chinese could mass an army near it's border and stop MacArthur's forces from taking all of North Korea. In late Nov 1950, they did.

What does this all mean? It means you are all historical joke/fool, Charles Willoughby.

RedneckMuslin May 30, 2012 at 1:52 pm

Is that how they got all our jerbs?

MittBorg May 30, 2012 at 2:23 pm

I just got done reading about the great US debacle in VietNam and Kampuchea and pretty much throughout Southeast Asia between 1940 through 1980. It would seem that US foreign policy is based on what a bunch of pignorami would like to think is the case. They then fund some ludicrous escapade or the other, which inevitably appears to result in torture, murder, the propping up of brutal dictatorships, exploitation, repression, and some aspects of the sex/slave/drug trade. It seems to me that there are problems with such an approach to foreign policy.

ManchuCandidate May 30, 2012 at 2:34 pm

Change foreign policy to almost everything they 'run'.

MittBorg May 30, 2012 at 2:37 pm

Clearly, intelligence has no evolutionary advantage, since otherwise, idiots like these should have died out a long time ago.

OldWhiteLies May 30, 2012 at 2:34 pm

"They then fund some ludicrous escapade or the other, which inevitably appears to result in torture, murder, the propping up of brutal dictatorships, exploitation, repression, and some aspects of the sex/slave/drug trade."

Keep reading – this is essentially the US foreign policy (a reader's digest condensed version, if you will) in our dealings with the entire rest of the planet. US exceptionalizm – hoo boy (NOT).

THIS is why many of the other planet's inhabitants WANT US DEAD. It is a painfully simple equation.

MittBorg May 30, 2012 at 2:43 pm

Until this year, my readings in history tended to the earlier end of the spectrum. Pre-WWI. However, US foreign policy debacles seem to rise to a peak post-WW II, which is the period I'm currently reading in. Sigh. So much foolishness, so little time to spread the venom.

Wile E. Quixote May 30, 2012 at 3:03 pm

You should read Tim Weiner's Legacy of Ashes about the CIA. Or perhaps not, because it might depress you even further.

NorthStarSpanx May 30, 2012 at 1:49 pm

Well, all this is great news until the NC-20 homeowners class action suit against the State sues for flood and hurricane damage since their insurance companies say it was a preexisting condition.

JerkCade May 30, 2012 at 1:50 pm

So this will mean more ocean and less North Carolina? Suh-weet!

edgydrifter May 30, 2012 at 1:50 pm

To build, or not to build, that is the question:
Whether 'tis nobler in the mind to suffer
the slings and arrows of Outrageous Science,
or to lobby against a rising sea of troubles,
and by legislating–profit!

Ruhe May 30, 2012 at 2:02 pm

Edifying!

MittBorg May 30, 2012 at 2:44 pm

Edgy, you're a poet. Downright … Elizabethan in your gravity.

MissTaken May 30, 2012 at 1:50 pm

I wore a jacket this winter so obviously there is no global warming!

SorosBot May 30, 2012 at 1:57 pm

Hey, there was still one snowfall here last winter (though just the one, and it wasn't even a full inch), so therefore there's no global warming!

SayItWithWookies May 30, 2012 at 1:52 pm

Paging King Canute….

MittBorg May 30, 2012 at 2:44 pm

Et tu, you brute?

NorbertsRevenge May 30, 2012 at 2:51 pm

Sounds like they are acting like a whole bunch of Cnuts.

Ruhe May 30, 2012 at 1:53 pm

On the one hand I'm thinking is it so bad if thousands of reality-challenged wealthy assholes get duped into building McMansions by the ocean only to have said ocean eat them. But on the other hand I'm realizing that whatever heroic engineering efforts are made to save those McMansions will be paid for by the entire tax-paying population of N.C. Just like New Orleans…if you're dumb enough to live below sea-level then you're fucked and you deserve it but if you have a 3,000 sq.ft. house on the gulf coast then the government has an obligation to rebuild your house and rebuild the coastline for you.

Guppy May 30, 2012 at 4:03 pm

Just like New Orleans…if you're dumb enough to live below sea-level

The area is a natural shipping hub, etc. The value of its location trumps the costs of (pretending to be) maintaining the levee system. Meanwhile, coastal NC has nothing to offer but ocean views from your living room. The only local industry is development, and the only source of revenue is property taxes.

Folks in NOLA know they need the levee system (and thought they had one). They're not like the asshats upriver in MO, etc. who don't want their view of the river obstructed.

veritass May 30, 2012 at 1:55 pm

Ok, fine North Carolina. Build your fucking cookie cutter suburban bullshit American dream houses on the site of a future lowtide mating area. We don't care. Your choice.

But DON'T cry to the government when your cul de sac is covered in 3 feet of salt water. No one is going to bail your dumb asses out.

I hope insurance companies refuse to cover you because of your house's pre-existing condition. The invisible hand of the market at work!

Serolf_Divad May 30, 2012 at 1:58 pm

What do you want to bet the same developers who are pushing for this measure so they can sell their beachfront property are also buying up cheap land a few hundred feet from what is currently the beach-front.

Baconzgood May 30, 2012 at 2:11 pm

WE HAVE A BINGO!

Guppy May 30, 2012 at 4:07 pm

Nah. From my experience, developers practice a "slash and burn" business philosophy, and don't want to linger in any one jurisdiction long.

After all, if they're playing this fast and loose with the laws of nature, how do you think new homeowners will feel about how well they follow other laws like building codes, etc?

Beowoof May 30, 2012 at 1:58 pm

Ah the republican bullshit machine at it again. And yet the rubes are so willing to believe. Even ones with enough cash to buy a house near the ocean. Buy in East Orlando and give it a few years you will be ocean front.

HobbesEvilTwin May 30, 2012 at 1:59 pm

These same assholes will run crying to that same awful over-regulatory government to renegotiate their fucking TIFF districts after their stupid hotels and condos are both literally and figuratively underwater.

Biel_ze_Bubba May 30, 2012 at 6:47 pm

The developer assholes and all their profits will be long gone. We'll be bailing out the morons who bought the properties.

Preferred Customer May 30, 2012 at 1:59 pm

If only Captain Smith had known, he could have had the Republicans make icebergs illegal, too.

BaldarTFlagass May 30, 2012 at 2:00 pm

Meh, they'll just hire a bunch of smart engineers and raise everything up, like they're doing in Venice, and did in Chicago back in the 1800s.

Guppy May 30, 2012 at 4:08 pm

How would they pay for it? Hike up the taxes on greens fees?

Biel_ze_Bubba May 30, 2012 at 6:45 pm

With tax cuts, of course.

widestanceromance May 30, 2012 at 2:04 pm

With so many houses already underwater, this is working out well for them, really.

MittBorg May 30, 2012 at 2:46 pm

Bar? Barbara Bush, is that YOU?

widestanceromance May 30, 2012 at 3:08 pm

Now, now, you don't think she reads Wonkette, do you?

MittBorg May 30, 2012 at 3:33 pm

Ya never know, toots.

BaldarTFlagass May 30, 2012 at 2:05 pm

On the plus side, the folks in Raleigh that like to scuba dive will have a shorter drive to get to the coast, and if these developers' plans come to pass there will be plenty of interesting underwater structures for the divers to explore and salvage/loot.

BigSkullF*ckingDog May 30, 2012 at 2:06 pm

As long as they don't expect us to bail out there soggy asses in fifty years. Have fun in waterworld, idiots!

SmutBoffin May 30, 2012 at 2:07 pm

♫"Ain't no homos scientists gonna make it to heaven."♪♫

OneYieldRegular May 30, 2012 at 2:08 pm

Hey buddy – wanna buy the Brooklyn Bridge?

fartknocker May 30, 2012 at 2:08 pm

I believe this is also the same state that hosts a preacher who want's to fence in all the gays and let them die. You know, when your state is filled with that much hate, I couldn't give two shits about what you want or care about. So just kindly STFU, disregard the science, and enjoy the next 50 years when your coast line moves X miles inland.

WeHaveIssues May 30, 2012 at 2:08 pm

First the gays, now science geeks. North Carolina's new state slogan, "We just make shit up to appease our Baptist preachers & Bank of America."

prommie May 30, 2012 at 2:10 pm

Nevar forget, wonketters, that for 20 years, it has been illegal for beef producers to test their beef for mad cow disease. You can look it up, the FDA has banned beef producers from testing all their carcasses so they can advertise this. Some wanted to, but other producers lobbied the FDA to prohibit it, in order that the invisible hand of the free market not force them all to take on this additional expense. No surprise, this socialist interference with the natural workings of the market, I suppose, what with all cattle ranchers being notoriously liberal and all. But anywhoo, same story. If we don't test for mad cow, then there is no mad cow! If we don't predict rising sea levels, they will not rise. Everyone will be issued a large bucket of sand, into which to shove their heads.

MittBorg May 30, 2012 at 2:47 pm

I happen to know of my own knowledge that this is true. Having long given up the fight to spread the news, I only ask: how the fuck did YOU find out?

Guppy May 30, 2012 at 4:21 pm

Policy wonks on a website called "Wonkette." Go figure!

Guppy May 30, 2012 at 4:20 pm

Food labeling laws I'm kind of ambivalent about. If there's no need for a claim to be scientifically justified, there's nothing to prevent someone from slapping a "100% polonium free!" label on everything, cornering the market as everyone abandons your implicitly radioactive competitors.

Is there a demonstrable reason to do more testing than is currently done? Would it catch more than the current regime? What are the chances of false positives?

The historically skittish Japanese and Korean governments seem generally OK with how the testing is done in the US. And I suspect that the lobbying money spent by Big Beef is counterbalanced by the money spent by Big Poultry and Big Pork, who wouldn't mind casting a few doubts on the quality of their competitors' product.

Hell, how do the Canadians handle this?

Veritas78 May 30, 2012 at 8:38 pm

Allow me to point out that they eat a LOT of beef in North Carolina.

And squirrel brains for dessert. So, obviously no testing needed, case closed, QED, you're welcome! Billions saved.

Jus_Wonderin May 30, 2012 at 2:11 pm

I take solace at the end of the day, that the End of the World won't happen until the end of the year. The End.

Pseudonymously_Joe May 30, 2012 at 2:16 pm

You know who else, when confonted with science that was politically inconvenient, decided that the solution was to make the science change?

MittBorg May 30, 2012 at 2:48 pm

That guy who wrote An Inconvenient Truth?

Fukui-sanRadioBarb May 30, 2012 at 3:01 pm

Pope Urban VIII?

PubOption May 30, 2012 at 3:01 pm

Way back in the 1600's the pope wasn't too happy with Galileo, and had a few inquisitors work on him.

Wile E. Quixote May 30, 2012 at 3:10 pm
Doktor StrangeZoom May 30, 2012 at 2:19 pm

Huh. I hope that these geniuses have also had a word with the insurance companies, which seem to have joined the left-wing propaganda machine

MittBorg May 30, 2012 at 2:51 pm

Yaknow, Doc, the insurance companies, who are in the business of betting upon the outcome of certain *factual* scenarios, were *never* going to fall for this scam, since they would lose fucking WADS of cash from it. And there's the example of California to remind them of how they can work together to keep their cash in their pockets where they feel it belongs. They are NOT going to insure a sure loser like this. They refused to insure against earthquakes in California, and now every homeowner has to pay into a pool to insure themselves, and boy, it costs a pretty penny.

AlaskaGrrl May 30, 2012 at 2:24 pm

You guys have it all wrong! This is really a clever plot by the trial lawyers. Estimates are lowered and development happens, then in 2100 when basements are flooded and there are tide pools are in the living room, time to call in the lawyers and sue!

And the trial lawyers are in cahoots with the teacher unions to make sure that the stupid goes on and on and on.

MittBorg May 30, 2012 at 2:52 pm

My brain hurts.

starfanglednut May 30, 2012 at 11:01 pm
MittBorg May 30, 2012 at 2:26 pm

If North Carolinians think for one hot minute that insurance companies will use their fifteen-inch estimate, and not the scientists' one-metre estimate, they are in for an enormous, and expensive surprise.

California self-insures homeowners against earthquakes, because no insurance company in their right mind is willing to do so. And it costs a fucking arm and a leg. Let's see how NC handles the repercussions.

Redhead May 30, 2012 at 3:09 pm

There's already a state pool (Beach Plan) for homes considered high-risk (right on the beach or prone to flooding). Rates are already astronomical.

JustPixelz May 30, 2012 at 2:26 pm

Banks don't really like people to have underwater mortgages. So good luck with the 15" law.

Estproph May 30, 2012 at 2:34 pm

All children currently younger than six years old, are now six years old.

niblick77 May 30, 2012 at 2:40 pm

Or, to think of it another way, the sea is not rising, the land is sinking. Probably due to all the fat people in NC.

MittBorg May 30, 2012 at 2:53 pm

Quick, spread that meme!

metamarcisf May 30, 2012 at 2:52 pm

This is good news for Aquaman.

GortRay May 30, 2012 at 3:05 pm

I was in NC last weekend and noticed that there is a town named Bat Cave. Also, a school named Isothermal Community College. And 47 million baptist churches. All of this scientifically proves that North Carolina is crazier than a bag of bees.

MittBorg May 30, 2012 at 3:08 pm

I'm trying to estimate the Crazy Quotient of a bag of bees. Do we have a number for the bees per bag?

Guppy May 30, 2012 at 4:24 pm

Isothermal Community College

How do the students rate on Hot or Not?

George Skullfry May 31, 2012 at 1:03 am

Neutral.

Redhead May 30, 2012 at 3:06 pm

Oh dear god. Like there wasn't enough from my state to make me want to beat my head against a wall these days. Christ guys, there's a "North" in front of the Carolina for a reason – quit trying to out-stupid SC!

YasserArraFeck May 30, 2012 at 3:12 pm

If Jeebus was gonna make the sea levels rise, he woulda given us gills. No gills, no problem.

DustBowlBlues May 30, 2012 at 3:16 pm

No time to read the post, but at least I can say hello to my fellow wonkeratti. I'm sharing what follows for all of you who might feel like shit, to cheer you up in a cold, schadenfreude kind of way.

Spent two days in a deep and exhausted depression and deep arthritis pain. Day two of depression, managed to go to the grocery store. On the way, realized that I had forgotten my checkbook, turned around and went back to our house to get it so can keep a charge off the bank card. (I was being very responsible and I payed for it in this way:)

At home again, I backed my car into the Old Man's truck and damaged both. Made it to the grocery but when I was putting things away, I discovered that the refrigerator was broken. And my ipod died. I decided to just go to bed with a cup of the hot milky beverage. It boiled over twice in the microwave, which I had to mop up. Plus, I have no time to hang out with my pals on the wonket.

For this opportunity to quit fretting about the impending billionaire/Republithug/zombie while you take a moment to enjoy my pain, all I can say is: You're welcome.

Wile E. Quixote May 30, 2012 at 3:35 pm

No, I don't feel better, I'm sorry to hear that. Schadenfreude, translates as "cruel joy" and is best described as the pleasure caused by the misfortunes of others (and just what are the chances that the Germans, of all people, would have a word to describe that feeling?). The context in which it is generally used implies that those others deserved their misfortunes and that a certain element of karma, and perhaps some hilarity too, is involved , cf. Ted Haggard. Otherwise it's not Schadenfreude and is instead just being a dick.

As an example thousands of people losing their 401k savings because of the idiot machinations of asshole bankers at Goldman Sachs is a tragedy. The feelings any decent human being has upon hearing about are those of outrage and deep sadness, not Schadenfreude. On the other hand Mitt Romney losing all of his money because of the idiot machinations of asshole bankers at Goldman Sachs would be hilarious. The feeling any decent human being would have upon hearing about this is Schadenfreude.

Schadenfreude. Remember, use it three times and it's yours!

GortRay May 30, 2012 at 5:56 pm

Sorry about all that, but you do have the fixin's for a mighty fine country song there!

starfanglednut May 30, 2012 at 11:03 pm

Awww, that's horrible! Feel better soon, dbb.

Wile E. Quixote May 30, 2012 at 3:17 pm

The North Carolina coast is weird. I have relatives in a place called Kure Beach. Kure Beach streets coming up from the ocean are lettered A, B, C, D, E, F, etc. Except A and B don't exist any more, or they do, but they're underwater, that part of Kure Beach was washed away by a hurricane. When I first visited my aunt and uncle at their house I commented on the unobstructed view of the ocean from their house. My uncle laughed and said that their view had only been unobstructed since the last hurricane season.

TanzbodenKoenig May 30, 2012 at 3:20 pm

So you can't fix stupid… but you can legislate it? Good to know

LeAlbatross May 30, 2012 at 4:38 pm

Also? Pi should be 3, because fractions are haaaaaaaard.

Tommy1733 May 30, 2012 at 5:08 pm

Oh My Gosh this is EXACTLY like the beginning of JAWS!

carlgt1 May 30, 2012 at 5:36 pm

they should enact legislation that if in 50 or 100 years the "global warming alarmists" turned out to be right (or closer than the right-wing deniers) — all costs borne from the damages are billed to the American Enterprise Institute, the Heartland Institute, the RNC, etc.

Biel_ze_Bubba May 30, 2012 at 6:44 pm

Is it just me, or does anybody else think that the land being under water will also "thwart economic development" on a large scale?

Obviously, the developers figure they'll be long gone before the suckers that bought their coastal McMansions start complaining about the blind shrimp in the basement.

Chow Yun Flat May 30, 2012 at 7:57 pm

North Carolina state legislators would fit perfectly with the sycophants in the court of King Canute.

starfanglednut May 30, 2012 at 10:58 pm

Actually, if the Greenland ice sheet melts, we can expect a global sea level rise of SEVEN METERS, that's roughly 21 fuckin feet, people! It'd flood their whole stupid state. Florida, also too.

Dumb fucks.

ttommyunger May 31, 2012 at 8:26 pm

Just more proof that "experts" are bought and sold on the not-so-open market, my friend.

MittBorg June 1, 2012 at 2:39 pm

I understand CA has implemented some sort of program for the Sacramento Delta floodplain in order to qualify for Federal flood insurance coverage, but I'm not up on the details, I'm afraid. As for earthquakes, we're expecting a HUGE one sometime within the next 35 years or so. That's when the state of Colorado finally gets that coastline they've been dreaming of. It's a little more difficult to deny the existence of earthquakes, which are pretty fucking devastating, as opposed to the slow rise in sea-levels, which can be denied until, like Canute, you're up to the neck.

Murgatroyd314 June 1, 2012 at 3:11 pm

I read this, and all I can think is…

"Eppur si muove"

MittBorg May 30, 2012 at 3:20 pm

Oh, no,no, no, I greatly appreciate any reading recommendations since I'm not very mobile these days and reading and film are among my few remaining pleasures. Also, I tend to read/watch depressing things. E.g., I just finished reading about Tuol Sleng (S-21 prison in Kampuchea), and am currently watching a documentary on it. Sometimes I wonder if this is a character flaw; other times, I just assume I was Chingiz Khan, or some equally bloodthirsty swine in a past life, and am sentenced to working out that karma in this life. But srsly. Thanks. I'll look it up.

MittBorg June 1, 2012 at 2:09 pm

They don't cover earthquake damage in California anymore since the last big one, the Simi Valley pancaking. Since that time, no homeowners' insurance company covers earthquake damage, and in certain areas (and I could be wrong about this) you can't get coverage for earth movement, like mudslides. The State of California has had to create a private insurance program for earthquake and mudslide coverage, and homeowners who don't buy into that program can eat the costs of any earthquake damage. Having lived through a big one in my area, I can tell you that the costs far outweigh the price of the insurance. We were glad we had it. Friends who didn't ended up paying a huge amount out of pocket to be temporarily relocated while contractors and inspectors determined whether their residence was safe to move back to.

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