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The good news about projections of what climate change will do to South Louisiana by the year 2040 is in all likelihood, I won’t be around to witness the destruction to human quality of life.

The bad news is my children and grandchildren will be.

The New York Times Magazine has just published an extensive look at the worldwide effects of climate change expected over the twenty-year span from 2040 to 2060 and the expectations are alarming, to say the least.

One of the features of the study that jumped out at me was an ANALYSIS of each of the 3,071 counties (and parishes) in the U.S. to determine which counties/parishes are at the greatest risks when considerations such as heat, wet bulb (humidity), farm crop yields, sea level rise, large fire dangers and economic damages are factored in.

The third-worst in overall ratings was St. Martin Parish and the sixth through ninth-worst were, in order, Assumption, Jefferson Davis, Livingston and St. John the Baptist. Livingston is where I have called home since 1981. That means that Louisiana has five of the nine counties at greatest risk over the next 40 years.

Heading the list were Beaufort County, S.C. and Pinal County, Arizona. Others among the 10 worst were Colleton County, S.C. and Wakulla County (4th and 5th-worst, respectively) and Jackson County, Mississippi (10th.).

Louisiana had 15 of the worst 50 counties on the list. The other 10 and their ranking include Calcasieu, Lafayette, St. James and St. Landry (in order, 12th through 15th), Beauregard and Lafourche (24th and 25th), East Baton Rouge, Iberville, Pointe Coupee, and Tangipahoa (in order, 39th through 42nd.

The three biggest factors for those 15 South Louisiana parishes were heat, humidity and sea level rise, as might be expected, though none of the 15 had the worst rating in all three categories.

Of course, California, Nevada and Arizona were plagued with the most intensive heat seen in those states in generations with a surge in the demand for air conditioning straining the electrical grid strained to the breaking point. California was hit with an unprecedented 900 wildfires that forced 100,000 to be evacuated from their homes. Some of the fires spread into adjacent Oregon and the entire Pacific Northwest was covered in thick blankets of smoke that made the air quality in Portland and Seattle the worst in the world, worse even than Hong Kong, which has been notorious for its smog levels for decades.

But the most alarming projection was the predicted shift of today’s most “suitable zone by temperature and precipitation” from the nation’s breadbasket (currently extending from the Atlantic coast westward into Oklahoma and Kansas and from the Gulf Coast north into Ohio, Tennessee and Virginia) in a northerly direction bordered on the south by Missouri, Tennessee and Virginia to a new northern border in the lower Great Lakes area by the year 2070.

Heat was described as “one of the largest drivers driving the niche of human habitability northward out of Arizona, Texas and Louisiana.

And while most don’t think of humidity when speaking of southwestern Arizona or Missouri, scientists project that residents of those areas will in 50 years feel like South Louisiana does today and wildfires will continue to be a major problem in the West, Northwest and Rocky Mountains as well as a growing threat in Florida, Georgia and the Southeast.

Sea levels will rise along all coastal areas of the U.S., including the entire lengths of the Pacific and Atlantic coastlines as well as the Gulf Coast while farm yields, just as with human migration, will move northward.

Gulf Coast states and the Carolinas are projected to feel the worst effects of economic damages with losses in such places as Houston and Miami running into the billions of dollars, due largely to the impact of rising sea levels, storms and heat.

The greatest climate risk will come from “compounding calamities,” the report says, which is cause for much of the concern over counties and parishes in Texas and Louisiana, including those 15 Louisiana parishes projected to be the hardest hit.

You can read the entire report by clicking HERE

But set aside plenty of time to read it. It’s one of the most comprehensive studies on the worldwide effects of climate change ever undertaken – the opinions of Donald Trump and his science-denier followers about global warming notwithstanding.

[Mining for quotes by and about Donald Trump

is like hunting wild game in a zoo.]

 

“We have 20 percent of the cases [in the world] because of the fact that we do much more testing. If we wouldn’t do testing, you wouldn’t have cases. You would have very few cases.”

—Trump, repeating his absurd assertion that is equivalent to saying if you never take a pregnancy test, you won’t get pregnant. [And if you don’t ever slap on that Yella Fella, we won’t be laughing at that ridiculous fake tan.]

 

“If Joe Biden ever got in, I think you’d have a depression the likes of which we have never seen in this country. If you look at his policies, where he wants to raise everybody’s taxes.”

—Trump, in another false claim during his town hall meeting. {Biden does not propose raising taxes on anyone making less than $400,000. [Trump also claimed the greatest economy under his administration. The economy was better under both Bill Clinton and Eisenhower – and the tax rate for the richest Americans under Eisenhower was 90 percent.]

 

“I will say this: They said at the Democrat convention they’re going to do a national mandate. They never did it, because they’ve checked out and they didn’t do it. And a good question is, you ask like Joe Biden — they said we’re going to do a national mandate on masks.”

—Trump, at Tuesday’s town hall. [Uh…Mr. Trump, no one can initiate such a mandate except the president – and right now, that’s still you. Joe Biden has never been president and won’t be until next Jan. 20. So, what the hell do you even mean by that? Plus, Biden said that would be something governors would have to do, albeit at his urging.]

 

“Christianity stands or falls with its revolutionary protest against violence, arbitrariness, and pride of power, and with its plea for the weak. Christians are doing too little to make these points clear … Christendom adjusts itself far too easily to the worship of power.”

—Theologian Dietrich Bonhoeffer, the complicity of churches with Hitler’s Germany.

 

“There is no more powerful force than a parent’s love for their children — and patriotic moms and dads are going to demand that their children are no longer fed hateful lies about this country.”

—Donald Trump, on Thursday, during ceremony commemorating the 233rd anniversary of the signing of the Constitution. [If only we could believe that. Instead, Trump says he will establish a commission he calls the 1776 Commission to promote patriotic education by “encouraging” educators to “teach” students “about the miracle of American history.” Excuse my cynicism, but that sounds a little too similar to indoctrination camps for my taste – and just who will write the history?]

Gary Varvel Comic Strip for September 18, 2020

A 27-page WHISTLEBLOWER COMPLAINT filed by a nurse who formerly worked at the Irwin County Detention Center (ICDC), a Georgia Immigration and Customs Enforcement (ICE) facility has placed a Ruston private prison company directly in the crosshairs of the House Homeland Security Committee chaired by Mississippi Democrat Bennie Thompson.

The complaint, filed by licensed practical nurse Dawn Wooten and signed by several immigrant advocacy groups, claims “an alarming pattern of unsafe conditions” in dealing with the coronavirus and “a lack of oversight at privately-run ICE facilities,” Thompson said.

Wooten raises red flags on what she called a “high rate of hysterectomies” performed without patients’ consent. “When I met all these women who had had surgeries, I thought this was like an experimental concentration camp. It was like they’re experimenting with our bodies,” she said.

“Everybody he sees has a hysterectomy—just about everybody,” she said without naming the doctor. “He’s even taken out the wrong ovary on a young lady [detained immigrant woman]. She was supposed to get her left ovary removed because it had a cyst on the left ovary; he took out the right one. She was upset. She had to go back to take out the left and she wound up with a total hysterectomy. She still wanted children—so she has to go back home now and tell her husband that she can’t bear kids… she said she was not all the way out under anesthesia and heard him [doctor] tell the nurse that he took the wrong ovary.”

Wooten also said that detained women expressed to her that they didn’t fully understand why they had to get a hysterectomy. “I’ve had several inmates tell me that they’ve been to see the doctor and they’ve had hysterectomies and they don’t know why they went or why they’re going.

“We’ve questioned among ourselves like goodness he’s taking everybody’s stuff out,” she said. “That’s his specialty, he’s the uterus collector. I know that’s ugly…is he collecting these things or something…Everybody he sees, he’s taking all their uteruses out or he’s taken their tubes out. What in the world?”

Wooten is represented by the Government Accountability Project which provides representation for whistleblowers, and Project South, a social justice organization. Signing off on the complaint were Georgia Detention Watch, Georgia Latino Alliance for Human Rights and South Georgia Immigrant Support Network.

Unwanted hysterectomies weren’t the only complaint cited. Detainees had their own grievances.

“This place is not equipped for humans,” said one detained immigrant at Irwin. Another immigrant stated: “This is the dirtiest facility I have ever been in: everything is dirty; one shower for more than fifty people; one bathroom for all of us; I don’t even know how to give more details because it is all nasty, really nasty; only God is taking care of us here.” Another immigrant told Project South: “It’s been hell. It’s dirty, its nasty, and there is mold.” She went onto say: “The food is so bad that people can’t keep it down.” She explained that the food is often spoiled and often times cockroaches and ants from the unit come into the food. Another immigrant stated: “The meals are disgusting. There are ants in the food.”

Nor was the 1200-bed facility in Ocilla, GA., the only LaSalle-run facility cited in the report.

Richwood Correctional Center, south of Monroe, in Ouachita Parish, also operated by LaSalle Corrections, was reported to be using similar tactics including requiring employees who may be COVID-19 positive to work, concealing who has tested positive for COVID-19, mixing COVID-19 exposed individuals with those who are not, and more.

The complaint called for “a prompt and thorough investigation into these practices at … all other LaSalle operated facilities as these complaints suggest a more systemic problem.”

LaSalle operates or has operated nine detention centers in Louisiana – four of those in Tallulah in Madison Parish – capable of housing up to 6,717 inmates. Altogether the company has run up to 25 PRIVATE PRISONS in Louisiana, Texas (15 centers) and Georgia (one) with at least 16,812 beds, according to LaSalle’s Web page. Three of the facilities failed to provide a bed count.

The Louisiana prisons currently or once run by LaSalle and their bed counts include:

  • Catahoula Correctional Center in Harrisonburg (835 beds);
  • Jackson Parish Correctional Center in Jonesboro (1252);
  • LaSalle Correctional Center in Olla (755);
  • Madison Parish Correctional Center in Tallulah (334);
  • Madison Parish Detention Center in Tallulah (264);
  • Madison Parish LTCW (formerly the Louisiana Transitional Center for Women) in Tallulah (535);
  • River Correctional Center in Ferriday (602);
  • Southern Correctional Center in Tallulah (564);
  • Winn Correctional Center in Winnfield (1576).

If nothing else, LaSalle and sheriffs it has agreements with (Jackson Parish is one of those) can do the math. The state pays sheriffs $24.39 per day per state prisoner housed in local jails. Ice pays an average of $65 per day in Louisiana (the rate in Jackson Parish is $74 per day; nationally, the average rate is $126 per day).

That made it a no-brainer for sheriffs and LaSalle. Starting pay for jail employees at Winn Correctional went from $10 yo $18 per hour – the pay rate was only $9 per hour as recently as 2014 – and in Jackson Parish, the starting pay was bumped to $17.31 per hour after nearly 7,000 immigration detainees were brought to LOUISIANA, now the second largest jailer of immigration detainees, ranking only behind Texas.

But even with money flowing in, the absence of generators left the Jackson Parish facility woefully unprepared for Hurricane Laura which KNOCKED OUT POWER in Jonesboro and left the detention center without water, ice or electricity for several days.

Perhaps the most revealing thing about working at LaSalle were the NEGATIVE REVIEWS posted online by current and former employees. Comments range from “Bad management,” “Worst place ever,” “Unprofessional,” “an absolute joke,” “Not worth it,” and “Horrible,” to mention just a few.

Overall, 99 of 164 employee reviews rated LaSalle at 1.0 or 2.0 on a scale of 1 to 5 as a favorable place to work, with 1.0 being the worst rating and 5.0 the best. Only 44 gave LaSalle a 4.0 or 5.0. The company was rated on five areas of operations: work/life balance, compensation/benefits, job security/advancement, management and culture.

The highest average rating among the five area was 2.6 for compensation/benefits and the lowest was 2.1 for management.

APPROPRIATELY NAMED ENTRANCE TO LASALLE

LASALLE HEADQUARTERS IN RUSTON

 

 

 

 

“This seems like a big moment in the campaign. Trump explicitly told the nation that he should be trusted over his own CDC on the vaccine. That’s headline news. It unequivocally confirms what critics — including scientists inside the administration — have warned of.”

—Tweet by Greg Sargent, Sept. 16, 2020. [Who is Greg Sargent? Just an average American citizen capable of thinking for himself, that’s all.]

 

“There are approximately 328.2 million people in the US. To get to the low end of herd immunity, about 60% of the population must catch Covid. That’s about 196,920,000 cases.
The current US death rate is about 2.96%. So that’s 5,836,679 deaths necessary for herd immunity
.”

—Tweet by Kyle Feldscher, another average American, Sept. 16, 2020. [The Spanish Flue pandemic of 2018, one of the deadliest pandemics in human history, killed 675,000 Americans. Let that sink in, Mr. Trump.]

 

“We’re very close to having the vaccine. If you want to know the truth, the previous administration would have taken perhaps years to have a vaccine because of the FDA and all the approvals, and we’re within weeks of getting it. You know, could be three weeks, four weeks, but we think we have it.”

—Donald Trump, in Tuesday’s town hall Q & A. [CDC Director Robert Redfield disagrees, testifying before Congress that it could be as late as the third quarter of 2021 before a vaccine is widely available.]

 

“I think he made a mistake when he said that. It’s just incorrect information,” Trump told reporters. That is incorrect information. I believe if you asked him, he would probably say that he didn’t understand the question.” 

—Trump, in response to Redfield’s testimony. [That’s right, Donnie, everyone’s wrong but you. Never let science get in the way of a good political agenda.]

 

“The president loves mixing it up with everybody. He did the interview with Jonathan Swan, the 18 tapes of Bob Woodward — now he did this. But this is an ambush.”

—Faux News host and Trump apologist Laura Ingraham, on that town hall meeting at which ordinary citizens asked question of Trump that any thoughtful voter might ask. [Maybe Laura’s pissed because a Black woman had the audacity to ask Trump to not interrupt and let her ask her question. Horrors! How rude of her!]

No collusion indeed.

You’d think they’d be a little more careful not to make it so obvious by vetting images that accompany their political ads.

The “they” is Donald Trump’s Make America Great Again Committee and the image is that of a silhouette of three soldiers, presumably American in a political ad asking that Americans “Support our Troops.”

The problem is, the stock photo is of Russian models posing as American soldiers and the military jets shown to be purportedly “supporting our troops” are Russian MiG-29s and the soldier on the far right is carrying a Russian-made AK-47 assault rifle.

The composite photo also includes Russian sky, Greek mountains and French ground, according to photo’s creator, Arthur Zakirov, a photo hobbyist who lives in the Russian city of Perm.

The ad ran from Sept. 8 to Sept. 12.

Check out Trump’s Russian-made ad HERE.

Oops.

Let’s see if this pops up on Q-Anon’s radar (probably not because it doesn’t fit their twisted agenda).

Besides, we know this was just another stupid mistake by the Trump organization…

But was it, really?

Again, oops.

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