Video – Hubcaps at the Bush Tabernacle

December 14, 2010 by Blue Ridge Leader Our Towns, Videos Comments Off on Video – Hubcaps at the Bush Tabernacle

On Sunday November 7 the Hubcaps played at the dedication of the Bush Tabernacle, formerly known as the Purcellville skating rink. The band played from 7:00 – 9:00 p.m. in the newly renovated roller skating rink.

Watch the video!

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Purcellville Police Blotter – Week of December 11

December 12, 2010 by Blue Ridge Leader Public Safety Comments Off on Purcellville Police Blotter – Week of December 11

Click here to view Purcellville’s Police Blotter.

Blue Ridge Leader News – December 12, 2010

December 12, 2010 by Blue Ridge Leader Tim Jon with BRLN Comments Off on Blue Ridge Leader News – December 12, 2010
tim jon

This Connection

I doubt if you know Jennifer K Sanford of of South Riding; she’s 14 years old and lives on Sandman Terrace. But in today’s ever-decreasing degrees of separation between beings, it’s important that we think about who we may know who may know her- or the young man she may be traveling with; an alert came out this past Friday that listed Jennifer as a missing teen. … Continue Reading

Sheriff Office Offers Winter Weather Driving Tips

December 10, 2010 by Blue Ridge Leader Public Safety Comments Off on Sheriff Office Offers Winter Weather Driving Tips

This morning’s snow has the Loudoun County Sheriff’s Office reminding motorists that winter driving can be hazardous, especially in our area where we normally receive a mixture of ice, freezing rain and snow.

Loudoun Sheriff Steve Simpson is advising motorists to make sure their vehicles are equipped with a well-stocked winter driving kit. A winter driving kit should include the following items: properly fitting tire chains, bag of sand or salt (or kitty litter), traction mats, nnow shovel, snow brush, ice scraper, booster cables, warning devices such as flares or emergency lights, fuel line de-icer (methanol, also called methyl alcohol or methyl hydrate), extra windshield wiper fluid appropriate for sub-freezing temperatures, roll of paper towels, flashlight and a portable flashing light (and extra batteries), blanket, extra clothing, including hat and wind-proof pants, and warm footwear, first aid kit, snack bars or other “emergency” food and water, matches and emergency candles (only use these with a window opened to prevent build-up of carbon monoxide), road maps, “Call Police” or other help signs or brightly colored banners.

More Tips on Safe Winter Driving

The Sheriff’s Office reminds motorists there are other ways to stay safe in the winter. Always keep the gas tank topped off. When it gets to half, fill it up. Do not travel unless absolutely necessary. If you do have to make the trip, ensure someone is aware of your route of travel.

… Continue Reading

Register for Winter Lacrosse

December 9, 2010 by Blue Ridge Leader Sports Comments Off on Register for Winter Lacrosse

NoVa West Lacrosse is accepting Team and Individual registrations for the Winter Indoor League Boys U11, U13, U15 and High School and Girls U13/U15 and High School at the Purcellville Sports Pavilion. Games begin in late January, register now space fills quickly. Visit http://novawestlax.com/indoor_league/index.asp for more information

NoVa West also is offering many Camps, Clinics and Personal Training options over the holiday break. Get some work in with collegiate stars who can help you take your game to the next level: www.novawestlax.com/docs/NW_Holidays.pdf

Celebrate Winter at Bluemont

December 9, 2010 by Blue Ridge Leader Lifestyle, Our Towns, Vineyards Comments Off on Celebrate Winter at Bluemont

Come on out to share a glass of wine with Celtic music and friends on Saturday, December 18 from 1:00 – 5:00 p.m. at Bluemont Vineyards. Bottles of local wine and a gift shop will be available for last minute shopping if your Santa chores are not completely done by that point.

Gina, Ray, Mike and Stuart will be playing Celtic tunes for your enjoyment, and of course, there will be a few songs to celebrate the Winter Solstice and Christmas. For more information, call Gina Faber at 540-338-2574.

On Behalf of those Doing the Most Good…

December 8, 2010 by Blue Ridge Leader Dear Editor, Opinion Comments Off on On Behalf of those Doing the Most Good…

“But I think the most likely reason of all, May have been that his heart was two sizes too small.” So says Dr. Sues about the Grinch who stole Christmas… although, I wonder if he wasn’t also referring to the officials at Bloom and Giant Stores in the D.C. Metro area. Recently these businesses have been deciding whether or not to allow Salvation Army Bell Ringers at their store fronts this season. Some have already refused while others are still deciding. When we heard about this we were profoundly upset. When we asked for an explanation the answer was: “Customer complaints” of feeling “threatened or offended.” Seriously?

So what do we expect the needy to do this season? Well, since the Salvation Army offends us, leave them to the government. “Are there no prisons? Are there no work houses?” says Mr. Scrooge. We pay our fair share in taxes for such establishments.

Do these complaining customers and business leaders understand the repercussions of this kind of decision?

Let us paint a picture…

In 2005 Hurricane Katrina devastated the Gulf Coast. My husband and I felt compelled to help. We spent two years as full-time volunteers rebuilding homes for the victims. How could we afford to leave our jobs and home to do this? The Salvation Army.
It was the Salvation Army who set up a permanent facility in Biloxi, Mississippi. They provided a place for us to live on their property— free. Our trailer was hooked up to water, waste and electricity— free. They set up a laundry: washer, dryer, detergent— free. They fed us three meals a day, every day— free… just as they housed and fed hundreds of thousands of other volunteers for FOUR years of rebuilding after Katrina.

As a case worker the one grant that I applied victims for and was never rejected was from the Salvation Army. The Salvation Army GAVE nearly every destroyed home new appliances. Washers, dryers, refrigerators, stoves— FREE. I don’t have statistics, but you can imagine for the entire town of Biloxi, that’s a lot of appliances! And this was just one of many Salvation Army Chapters nationwide. If you were ever curious about what this organization does with donations… they are doing good… “Doing the Most Good”, just as they claim.

And in all our time in Biloxi the Salvation Army’s generosity was completely unconditional. Never once were we preached to. No attempt to proselytize. Never asked to go to a church service, or even make a contribution. Their gifts were absolutely free, no strings attached. Of course we all know that famous phrase: No such thing as a free lunch. To say all this was free isn’t really true. It was “free” to those who received, but came at a cost from those who GAVE.

Which brings us to the point: Isn’t that one of the lessons of this time of year? Even if you are “offended” by Christian foundations of the Salvation Army can we not see the wisdom and compassion in the charity provided? How hard is it to just walk by if you don’t want to drop some change in the kettle? Do you have to completely block the effort for the needy? Especially this time of year? Or perhaps we should just take the pre-reformed Scrooge mentality: “If they would rather die, [than go to the government-run poor houses] they had better do it and decrease the surplus population.”

Monica and Doug Gill
Round Hill

Forecasting the Future Climate – Part 3

December 7, 2010 by Blue Ridge Leader Columns, Sustainable Planet Comments Off on Forecasting the Future Climate – Part 3

“The EU has pledged to cut emissions by 20% from 1990 levels by 2020, which will require a 35 percent cut in emissions from electricity generation and a vast expansion of renewables.” Colin Macilwain, Nature, 468, December 2, 2010.

Tony Noerpel

We’ve seen in parts 1 and 2 that whether the peak oil community view, that we are fast running out of fossil fuels or the cornucopian view, that there is plenty of fossil fuels, is correct, we will suffer significant consequences to continued unregulated use of fossil fuels. The announcement a few weeks ago from the International Energy Agency, which has traditionally taken a cornucopian view, that we achieved peak production of conventional crude oil in 2006, weighs heavily on the side of the peak oil hypothesis. However, it has always been known that the supply of liquid fossil fuels was more fragile than the gas (methane) and solid (coal, tar, kerogen, heavy oil, etc.) resources. At any rate, realized supply problems render global warming denial arguments as completely irrelevant to policy as they’ve always been to the science. We need comprehensive energy and climate legislation now. Putting aside the difficulty of achieving that in the next two years, and accepting that here in the United States we have a serious political intransigence, I want to focus instead on the engineering aspect. The news here is very good.

Figure 1 shows per capital fossil fuel energy use for several countries and the world. There is good news and bad news in this figure. Note that the average American uses more than 2 times as much fossil fuel energy as the average European and six times as much as the rest of the world’s citizens. Several years ago when I first forecast a possible oil crisis (the one that did happen) people would object that since we have a service economy, we would be less vulnerable to oil shortages than a manufacturing economy which actually produced something, such as Germany or China. My reply was to point out that regardless of what we may imagine our economy to be; we used a whole lot of fossil fuels to accomplish it. The service economy argument was a red herring. We are more vulnerable to an oil crisis because we use more oil, regardless of what we do with it. We are unprepared for a future with less oil. This is the bad news.

The good news is that the bulk of our energy use, about 65 percent, is wasted. Europe maintains a higher quality of life, if we use infant mortality rate as the metric, on about 65 percent less energy consumption. Congressman Roscoe Bartlett pointed out in 2005 that 65 percent of future energy in America has to come from conservation. Conservation is the cheapest from of energy mining and given our level of waste, would be easy to achieve with good federal policy. Cutting our energy consumption to European levels should be easy. Cutting our electricity generation a further 35 percent should be our goal. These are exactly the kinds of policies which President Carter initiated in the late 70’s as a response to the oil crises during that decade. This is low hanging fruit: car pooling, tax credits for replacing leaky windows or installing extra insulation, etc.

annual per capita fossil fuel consumption in metric tonnes of carbon.

annual per capita fossil fuel consumption in metric tonnes of carbon.

Our energy and climate legislation needs to include aggressive tax policy to encourage conservation. Clearly, such a policy generates jobs here in America which cannot be exported overseas. Figure 2 breaks down the energy use by sector in the United States.

Figure 2 Energy use by sector in the United States

Figure 2 Energy use by sector in the United States

Note that buildings, combining commercial and residential, use 41% of our energy principally for lighting, heating and cooling. This is low hanging fruit. We know how to build zero-carbon homes and buildings. We need to employ energy auditors, and trades people to install energy efficient retrofits to homes. The stimulus package was supposed to have included this.

To address transportation, our energy and climate legislation needs to include funds for high speed rail, light rail and pedestrian and bicycle paths. A few years ago one of our local architects, Alan Hansen, sketched out for me a plan for a light passenger rail loop connecting the future Moorefield Station Metro stop with the rest of Loudoun County. I thought it was brilliant. These are jobs created right here in Loudoun County. We also need higher fuel efficiency standards, equivalent to those adopted by the rest of the world.

Having cut our energy consumption by half or more, we can more easily transition our energy supply to wind and solar. Trans-Electric Development Company in cooperation with Google is proposing to build an Atlantic Wind Connection offshore wind transmission line project which would carry 6000 MW of energy flow [1]. This is being financed privately. Offshore wind between Cape Hatteras and Cape Cod in the Mid-Atlantic Bight can potentially generate as much as 64,000 MW of energy flow. This represents four percent of current United States electricity production but with 65% reduction in energy use, it represents 10 percent of our electrical energy needs. Of course, counting on continuous power from wind would reduce this to about three percent. We also need to develop concentrated solar thermal power generation in America’s south west. On shore wind and offshore wind from other areas complete the mix. For more information on the challenges of offshore wind and European development see [2].

We can easily pay for this by cutting our military budget by 90 percent. It is a shame that none of our newly elected representatives, though decrying our huge deficits, have no idea how those deficits were created and therefore which spending is wasteful and has to be cut. We need to cut our losses in Afghanistan. President Bush lost that war, whether or not we think it was justified and President Obama made a mistake, which cost him the support of his base (a mistake Bush never made), by adopting the war as his own. The current Afghanistan leaders are carting money out of that country as fast as we are pouring it in. The Iraq War is lost. We will never seize control of Iraqi oil as intended. If the reader wished to believe that the war was not about oil but about the non-existing weapons of mass destruction, then we had already won the war before the invasion. We lost the war with the first casualty. Either way, it has cost us several 1000 billion dollars, depending on which estimate one wants to believe, leaving aside the human costs. Money that could easily have been spent here in America or simply not spent at all.

The United States currently maintains over 600 garrisons in over 100 countries, and one might reasonably ask why. This is the effort of neo-conservatives through the years and the military industrial complex which President Eisenhower warned us about back in 1960. I mentioned the 90 percent estimate to a friend a few weeks ago and she replied that we could not do that because of national defense. I asked why more money is required to defend America than say Canada, Russia or China. We outspend the rest of the world combined and the military budgets for these countries are all less than 10% of our spending. In other words, cutting our military budget by 90 percent still leaves us with the most expensive military in the world. Military spending is the largest pork barrel in the government budget.

In addition to cutting military spending to help pay for our energy transition, the energy and climate legislation should include a carbon tax. The goal of the tax should be to force coal companies to pay for the external costs associated with mountain top removal mining, the costs which we will have to pay to clean up the mess they are creating. If the carbon tax is set sufficiently high, we will stop destroying valuable and irreplaceable water shed, replacing it as coal companies do with toxic desert.

Finally, we need to increase spending on energy research. Michael Polymenis writes in Nature this week:

“It is worth recalling physicist Michael Faraday’s reply in the 1850s to William Gladstone, then British Chancellor of the Exchequer. Questioned about the practical value of electricity, Faraday answered: “One day, sir, you may tax it.”

I will address each of the topics raised in more detail in future articles. My conclusion is that we can do this and it is not an engineering or science problem, though really cool engineering challenges exist, but a political one.

Tony Noerpel

[1] http://www.nytimes.com/2010/10/12/science/earth/12wind.html?_r=2&hp

[2] Colin Macilwain, Supergrid, Nature, volume 468, 2 December, 2010.

Blue Ridge Leader News – December 5, 2010

December 5, 2010 by Blue Ridge Leader Tim Jon with BRLN Comments Off on Blue Ridge Leader News – December 5, 2010
tim jon

A Middleburg Eccentric

I hope, for her sake, that Dee Dee Hubbard has a good lawyer. Virginia State Police arrested the Editor and Co-Owner of the Middleburg Eccentric this past week; her attorney, Ed McMahon, said the charges are false. … Continue Reading

Holiday Burglary Prevention

December 2, 2010 by Blue Ridge Leader Public Safety Comments Off on Holiday Burglary Prevention

Provided by the Loudoun County Sheriff’s Office

As we enter the holiday season we must keep in mind that criminals are still around and will prey on the unprepared. To help pre- pare citizens for the poten- tial criminal behaviors that are common this time of year this article will focus on home security.
Criminals, especially bur- glars, rely on our predict- able behavior to ensure the success of their crime. This behavior can put us at risk and increase our chances of being victimized. To help prepare citizens for the holi- day and help brake the rou- tine here are some tips for the community that relate specifically to Burglary Pre- vention.

  • Unsecured windows are a easy target for burglars. Do not run lighting cords or extension through any window you cannot 100 percent secure.
  • Burglars will watch holiday related trash for indication on what gifts may have been received. Cut up all boxes and packaging with identifying panels and bag them in dark colored trash bags.
  • Don’t give burglars the chance to dumpster dive. Wait until the morning of trash pick-up to set your trash out.
  • Place you holiday lighting on timers so they go on and off on their own. A sure sign that no one is home are holiday lights turned off when they have normally been turned on.
  • Try to keep gift boxes out of sight. If a burglar can see the gifts around the tree it may be just the opportunity they were looking for.
  • Do not leave gifts locked in your car. Your car is more easily broken into than your home. Find a good hiding place in your home and use it.

Old Mill Helps Local Animal Shelter

December 2, 2010 by Blue Ridge Leader Loudoun County Comments Off on Old Mill Helps Local Animal Shelter

Animals awaiting adoption at the Loudoun County Animal Shelter are getting an early holiday gift thanks to Old Mill Veterinary Hospital in Leesburg. Dr. Chris Hussion and his staff are generously donating their facility and time to provide free spay/neuter surgery for shelter animals looking for new homes.

On Sunday, December 5, the Animal Shelter’s mobile adoption vehicle will transport the lucky cats and dogs to be spayed and neutered at Old Mill. The animals will spend a couple of days recovering from surgery and will be ready for adoption at the shelter on Saturday, December 11.

Thanks to the generosity of Dr. Hussion and his staff, adopters will not be required to pay the spay/neuter fee for animals altered at their hospital. Adoption fees for cats and kittens that have already been altered range from $10 to $40, depending on age, while adoption fees for dogs and puppies range from $25 to $75.

In addition, as part of the Shelter’s Home for the Holidays promotion, all dogs and cats adopted in December will receive a special holiday stocking of their very own! The goal of the program is to find a new home for every animal in the Shelter before the New Year.

Animals available for adoption can be seen online at the Shelter’s website: www.loudoun.gov/animals. Animals can be visited at the Animal Shelter, located off Route 9 in Waterford, during the following times: Saturday and Sunday, noon-4:00 p.m., Monday and Tuesday, noon-6:00 p.m., and Wednesday noon-8:00 p.m.

The Loudoun County Animal Shelter is located at 39820 Charles Town Pike in Waterford. Shelter information and directions can be found at www.loudoun.gov/animals. For more information on Old Mill Veterinary Hospital, visit www.oldmillpets.com.

State of the Union

December 2, 2010 by Blue Ridge Leader Columns, Sustainable Planet Comments Off on State of the Union

“No credible climate scientist now doubts that humans have had an effect on Earth’s climate during the last two centuries, primarily by causing increases in the concentrations of greenhouse gases like carbon dioxide and methane in the atmosphere.” William F. Ruddiman, Plows, Plagues, and Petroleum, Princeton University Press, 2005.

“Growing evidence indicates that human activity is altering the climate in significant and potentially hazardous ways.” Tristan S. L’Ecuyer and Jonathan H. Jiang [1].

“We should see scientific and technological innovation as an important pillar and make greater effort to develop new industries of strategic importance. Science and technology is a powerful engine of economic growth . . . We will make China a country of innovation. . . We will accelerate the development of a low-carbon economy and green economy so as to gain an advantageous position in the international industrial competition.” Chinese Premier Wen Jiabao, World Economic Forum, September 10, 2009.

Tony Noerpel, December 1, 2010

By way of introduction to my readers, I’m a satellite communications engineer. Through most of my career, I’ve done research and development beginning in 1977 at Bell Telephone Laboratories. At Bell Labs I crossed paths with Nobel Laureates Arno Penzias and Robert Wilson. I shared an office with Ed Ohm who built the low noise receiver they used to measure the background radiation of the universe which proved the Big Bang Theory. I hold 32 US patents and have over 70 publications including peer-reviewed journal articles, conference papers and book chapters.

In my entire career, no senator, such as for example James Inhofe, declared that satellite communications was a hoax. No syndicated columnist, such as for example George Will, claimed that satellite engineers were wrong about the height of the geosynchronous satellite orbit. No neo-classical economist, such as for example William Nordhaus, presumed that economics determined satellite orbits instead of gravity. No extreme right wing and transparently partisan radio or FOX TV personality (these appear more numerous than stink bugs) claimed that satellite scientists were liars or communists. In short, in my field, engineers and scientists could go about our business without being libeled and contradicted by indignantly self-righteous ideologues.

On July 25, 1997, The Senate voted 95-0 in favor of the Byrd-Hagel Resolution keeping the United States out of the Kyoto Protocol process. During this time the extremist right wing media pontificated that our country was dominated by liberals overlooking the embarrassing fact that no liberal would have voted for such a disastrous and irresponsible resolution. It is literally true that there was not a single liberal in the Senate in 1997; not even one. I do not believe even a moderate would have voted to keep the United States out of the Kyoto process. In fact, no intelligent and well-informed conservative would have voted for the Byrd resolution. We, the people of the United States, were being lied to. Our government was in fact overrun by inadequately informed conservatives, notwithstanding that many of them were apparently not conservative enough. I felt the need to understand the science behind anthropogenic global warming theory not because I mistrusted it. That would have been ridiculous. Climate science is not my field. I mistrusted denialists and their corporate funders and I was curious to know how far from reality modern American conservatism had drifted and how much damage they were going to cause.

I understand Maxwell’s Electro-Magnetic Field Theory fairly well having invented antennas and guided wave devices. Radiation physics is an integral part of planetary climate physics since ultimately a planet’s climate is determined by the radiation budget at the boundary between the atmosphere and outer space. As Joseph Fourier showed in 1824, incoming short wave solar radiation must balance outgoing long wave heat radiation. So I understand one of the more difficult aspects of climatology. However, I am not a climate physicist and do not claim to be.

Therefore, I always accepted and respected the considered and educated opinion of the climate science community that anthropogenic global warming is a serious problem. If George Will, or Glen Beck or James Inhofe held the same level of foolish and ignorant opinion about satellite communications which they hold about global warming I would have hoped they would have been written off as extremist nuts. What was going wrong with our country when such irresponsible and unreliable people were given large soap boxes? I know at least two things. James Inhofe knows more about satellite communications than he knows about global warming and he doesn’t know a damned thing about satellite communications.

I began my study of climatology as any good engineer or scientist would by reading Earth science and climate physics text books. This is a necessary first step in order to understand the lingo of climate science. LGM is the Last Glacial Maximum and it occurred 20,000 years ago, predating the presumed creation of the Earth for some of us, I know. PETM is the Paleocene-Eocene Thermal Maximum happening 55 million years ago. Equilibrium climate sensitivity is the amount the Earth would warm if atmospheric carbon dioxide were doubled including only fast feedbacks and after the climate had equilibrated. It helps to know these things if a person endeavors to read and understand the science. If you don’t know this stuff and are a global warming denier, then you must concede that you are not skeptical, but gullible.

A fellow engineer and I were working together on a state-of-the-art satellite system. At the end of one meeting, global warming came up in the conversation. He asked me “Do you believe in global warming?”

I replied “of course not, I understand it.” To which he rolled his eyes.

He told me he had seen just the other night on TV a scientist explain that the carbon dioxide we were putting in the atmosphere compared to something else (he wasn’t sure what) was actually quite a small amount and therefore global warming couldn’t possibly be happening. Humans could not possibly be having an impact. It was a killer argument, he said.

I said: “We have to design the waveform for this satellite project.” Are you going to channel surf tonight to see if you can find a television program that will tell us how to do it?”

“Of course not.”

“Then why would you watch TV to learn about climate physics? Why would you possibly think you were going to learn something useful? Why wouldn’t you do what you do for work and read the science?”

“Look, nobody has time for that.”

“I agree, which is why you should not be wasting time watching TV in the first place.“

I asked him if he knew the name of this presumed scientist. He did not. He didn’t know what kind of scientist the guy was nor actually if he even was a scientist. He did not remember the TV channel or when he saw it. And he could not recall the details of the argument. I pointed out to him that this was the difference between belief and understanding. He believed. I understood. He believed opinion from an unreliable source which he could not verify and I understood information from reliable sources which I had verified. He would rather “believe” some unknown charlatan than trust the science described by the entire climate science community.

Not having much information to go on, I drew a picture of the Earth’s carbon cycle on the white board in the conference room including flows between various Earth subsystems (from memory and based on the scientific publications of Kevin Trenberth and his colleagues at the National Center for Atmospheric Research) clearly illustrating the human impact. I sent him references to the peer-reviewed science for verification when I got back to my office.

While studying climate physics I was introduced to a wide variety of scientific fields, which I previously never had the time to study: geology, paleontology, astrophysics, biology and so on. The point is that anthropogenic global warming is consistent with all of our accumulated knowledge in these other fields. No science threatens the consensus view of global warming so all of science is a wonderfully enticing open book. Denial of global warming is inconsistent with science. Therefore it is a closed book. Deniers are not curious people because self contradiction and cognitive dissonance lurk behind every tree and beneath every rock. Deniers are not skeptics. They are of necessity closed minded ideologues. Ideologies, whether free market capitalism or soviet central planning, are in the end the same thing differing only in detail. Ideologies substitute a belief system for critical thinking. Any ideology can make a fool out of anybody because all ideologies though useful over some period of time or in some place eventually fail when circumstances change.

Take free market ideologue Milton Friedman. He wrote in Capitalism and Freedom, published in 1962, that “the great advances of civilization, in industry or agriculture, have never come from centralized government,” five years after centrally planned Soviet Union launched Sputnik on October 4, 1957 [2]. On November 13, 1957, President Eisenhower said: “The Soviet Union now has – in the combined category of scientists and engineers – a greater number than the United States. And it is producing graduates in these fields at a much faster rate … This trend is disturbing. Indeed, according to my scientific advisers, this is for the American people the most critical problem of all. My scientific advisers place this problem above all other immediate tasks of producing missiles, of developing new techniques in the Armed Services. We need scientists in the ten years ahead…” [3].

The entire satellite communications industry came from two very different centralized governments, the Soviet Union and the United States and as a matter of fact the most centrally planned government beat us to it. This isn’t an endorsement of central planning. All ideologues are fair game and should be ridiculed. Reality is quite complicated and cannot be boiled down to a few rigid beliefs. While free market capitalism has considerable merit over soviet central planning it is clearly not the major cause of human technological advancement as both the Soviet Union and the United States independently developed nuclear weapons, nuclear power, space exploration, and spread their influences far beyond their extensive borders. The major cause was the discovery and exploitation of low entropy (basically energy, see [4]). The major cause for the collapse of the Soviet Union was the misallocation of captured low entropy to military expansion, their nuclear arsenal and the Afghanistan War. These are the same causes contributing to the current collapse of the United States economy.

Studying the science over several years convinced me that there is no science which supports global warming denial. I understand that most of us likely don’t have that kind of time. Fundamentally, trusting climate scientists is the same thing as trusting satellite engineers. Global warming is real and satellite communications works. You don’t have to take a dozen college courses in orbital mechanics in order to convince yourself that your satellite TV or satellite radio system will actually work. The science is the same. If the choice is between Ruddiman, sapient climate physicist, and Will, professional bloviate, then we go with sapience.

I can understand why the CEO of Exxon Mobil is not motivated to tell the truth about climate science. He has to because of his obligation to increase shareholder value. I’m a share holder and I understand this responsibility. The CEO of Exxon Mobil cannot support what is best for America or Americans if he perceives that it threatens profits in the next quarter.

But our representatives and senators have an obligation to us, to future generations and to the truth on which they have reneged. The main stream media in America have let us down to their shame. Jon Stewart makes the point that monkeys (politicians) throw feces. We accept this. It is when the zookeeper (the press) throws feces, too, that we get into trouble. In this regard it is worth noting that FOX News is more closely allied to the GOP than Pravda was to the Kremlin. We saw how well that worked for them.

In future articles, I will explain jut how serious our trouble is. Deniers have left us in a dangerous situation and we are running out of time. The 112th congress is the most clueless congress we have ever elected. Since they are all ideologues, it is just as easy to anticipate the sort of mayhem they will cause as it was to forecast back in 2000 that the Bush administration would cause the worst economic collapse since the great depression. I made that forecast and I was right.

If you want to learn more about the role of satellites in studying the Earth see [1].

[1] http://ptonline.aip.org/journals/doc/PHTOAD-ft/vol_63/iss_7/36_1.shtml?type=RSS&bypassSSO=1

[2] Oreskes and Conway, Merchants of Doubt, 2010.

[3] http://www.energy.gov/media/Chu_NationalPressClub112910.pdf

[4] Tony Noerpel, Entropy, http://brleader.com/?p=2025

GSA Establishes 2011 Board of Directors

December 1, 2010 by Blue Ridge Leader Business, Loudoun County Comments Off on GSA Establishes 2011 Board of Directors

Subsequent to a series of planning sessions to maximize its ability to support the indigent in Loudoun County, the Good Shepherd Alliance (GSA) held elections for the 2011 volunteer Board of Directors Executive Committee.

Mark Gunderman (Sterling) will chair the GSA Board with Bob Ohneiser (Ashburn) supporting him as Vice Chair. Jim Baratta (Ashburn) will serve as Treasurer and Pastor Salvatore D’Agostino (Common Ground Church – Leesburg) as Board Secretary.

The GSA was established in 1983 and currently manages homeless shelters for women and children in Purcellville and North Leesburg with four thrift stores in Sterling, Ashburn and Leesburg.

To receive information about our homeless programs, services and charitable events, or to donate or volunteer, visit http://www.goodshepherdalliance.org/.

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By Donna Williamson Tom Ogren has a long-time interest in allergy-inducing plants. He has written several books on the topic and in February released his latest The Allergy Fighting Garden. He explains why plants can stir up allergies and has …

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Samuel Moore-Sobel

Saving The Art Of Letter Writing

1 Jul 2015

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– By Samuel Moore-Sobel This year a woman in France received a letter in the mail. What made her experience unique was that the letter had been written on January 27, 1877, and was intended for her great-grandfather. Steve Insekeep, …

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Amy V. Smith's Money Talks

The Marital Agreement

2 Jul 2015

Smith0035

– By Amy & Dan Smith In Virginia, as in most states, a marital agreement can be entered into before or after marriage. It can cover a variety of topics but commonly addresses issues pertaining to the disposition of property …

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Student News

8th Grade Writers Honored At Blue Ridge Middle School

2 Jul 2015

blueridgemiddleschool

Sixty-seven Blue Ridge Middle School eighth graders have been honored for their writing during the 2014-2015 school year. Many students had their writing selected for publication by Creative Communication, a program for student writers, while others won county-wide writing contests. …

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Ben Kellogg Achieves Eagle Scout

1 Jul 2015

benkellog

Benjamin Robert Kellogg achieved the rank of Eagle Scout at a Court of Honor conducted at St. Andrew’s Presbyterian Church in Purcellville on March 29. Friends, family and troop leaders attended the celebration, including his parents, Robert and Deirdre Kellogg. …

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Blue Ridge Middle Places 11th In National Science League

1 Jul 2015

blueridgemiddleschool

Blue Ridge National Science Day Declared Tuesday, June 10 has been officially been declared Blue Ridge National Science Day. At a recent Purcellville Town Council Meeting, Mayor Kwasi Fraser and members of the town council signed a proclamation designating this …

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Events

July 2015
M T W T F S S
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Afghan Treasures Trunk Show

Summer Expressions: an exhibit of abstract paintings by artist Rebeca Roman and ceramics by potter Steven Shiraishi

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Summer Expressions: an exhibit of abstract paintings by artist Rebeca Roman and ceramics by potter Steven Shiraishi

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Afghan Treasures Trunk Show

Moonlight Zip Tours in Middleburg Virginia

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MAIN STREET THEATER: AristoCats

Moonlight Zip Tours in Middleburg Virginia

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Afghan Treasures Trunk Show

MAIN STREET THEATER: AristoCats

Moonlight Zip Tours in Middleburg Virginia

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Notaviva Vineyards - Bluegrass Jam - FREE event

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Afghan Treasures Trunk Show

Garden Party

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Afghan Treasures Trunk Show

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Garden Party

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Afghan Treasures Trunk Show

Garden Party

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Garden Party

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Afghan Treasures Trunk Show

Garden Party

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Garden Party

GALLERY COFFEEHOUSE: READERS THEATER

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Afghan Treasures Trunk Show

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Afghan Treasures Trunk Show

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Afghan Treasures Trunk Show

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Afghan Treasures Trunk Show

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Afghan Treasures Trunk Show

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Afghan Treasures Trunk Show

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Disney’s The Little Mermaid Jr.

Culinary Garden Summer Music Series

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Afghan Treasures Trunk Show

Disney’s The Little Mermaid Jr.

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Afghan Treasures Trunk Show

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Afghan Treasures Trunk Show

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Afghan Treasures Trunk Show

Annual Summer Sidewalk Sale Returns with Bargains for Everyone

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Annual Summer Sidewalk Sale Returns with Bargains for Everyone

Notaviva Vineyards - Bluegrass Jam - FREE event

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Afghan Treasures Trunk Show

Annual Summer Sidewalk Sale Returns with Bargains for Everyone

Recent Comments

View From the Ridge

An Open Letter to the Citizens of Purcellville

5 May 2015

blueridge2

Mark Your Calendar, They’ve Asked for Our Input So Let’s Give It To Them By Steady and Nobull The Purcellville Planning Commission has tentatively scheduled a series of public input sessions June 4, 11 and 18 at 7:00 p.m. at town hall for the proposed sweeping zoning changes. These major …

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Editorial

How Did We Get Here And How Do We Get Out?? A Summary Of Purcellville’s Sewer Debt And Strategic Solutions

1 Jul 2015

kwasifraser

– By Kwasi Fraser, Mayor of Purcellville Many of our fellow citizens are baffled by the proposed increase in our already high water and sewer rates, and not just about the increase that was proposed for the Fiscal Year 2016 but also about the proposed increases over the next nine years. This quote from one of our citizens to a …

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Lifestyle

Artist’s Profile: Michele Sommers, Mural Artist – The Beauty Of Life, Evolving Over Time

2 Jul 2015

artist3

– By Andrea Gaines Two things defy reason when it comes to mural artist and painter Michele Sommers. The first is her irrepressibly humble attitude towards her talent. The second is the absolute divinity of her work. I knew that in writing about her in this way she would be thinking, Oh … come on … I’m not THAT good! …

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Kicking Off Farm To Fork With Music

1 Jul 2015

farmtofork

Kicking off this year’s Farm-to-Fork Loudoun project is the second annual Farm, Fork & Art, with music added: a special concert from home grown, award winning folk and Americana singer-songwriter Andrew McKnight. Farm, Fork, Art & Music begins at 6 p.m. sharp at the unique Trinity House Cafe located at 101 E. Market St. in Leesburg on Wednesday, July 22, …

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Hillsboro Celebrates Independence Day July 3

1 Jul 2015

hillsborojuly3

Bring your friends and family to Hillsboro’s Old Stone School on Friday, July 3 for the annual Independence Day Celebration. The celebration will be preceded by the second of four seasonal outdoor markets which will open on July 3 at 4 p.m., and the Independence Day festivities begin at 6 p.m. at the Old Stone School located at 37098 Charles …

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Wild Loudoun

Ancient Oaks – The Great Providers

1 Jul 2015

wildloudoun

– By Andrea Gaines She feeds the birds. She shelters the mammal. She cools the air, provides us with shade and conserves the water and soil. She is the mighty old oak, an ecosystem unto herself. All except the smallest living things function as an ecosystem of sorts – whether harboring the bacteria and microscopic plants that break down organic …

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Around Virginia

Governor Signs Senator Black’s Campus Sexual Assault Bill

governorsigns

On Thursday, May 28, Sen. Richard Black traveled to Richmond for the bill signing ceremony of his bill, Senate Bill 712, the Campus Sexual Assault Bill. Black’s law will change the way that Virginia’s colleges and universities handle sexual assault cases.  “When I heard about the Hannah Graham case, I …

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McAuliffe Announces Movie To Film in Virginia

McAuliffe

Gov. Terry McAuliffe announced that Virginia has been selected as the filming location for “Loving,” a motion picture based on the true story of Richard and Mildred Loving, a Virginia married couple who, in 1958, were arrested for violating a state law at the time prohibiting interracial marriage. The couple …

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Bipartisan Legislation Hopes To Reduce Wasteful Spending

blueridge2

U.S. Sens. Mark R. Warner (D-VA) and Rand Paul (R-KY) have teamed up on a bipartisan proposal to empower federal workers to identify and cut down on unnecessary federal spending. The Bonuses for Cost-Cutters Act of 2015 would build on existing law by expanding a program that allows U.S. government …

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Sports

Upper Loudoun Little League Pre-Game Ceremony

1 Jul 2015

ULLLpic5

– By Carri Michon The Majors championship game for Upper Loudoun Little League dawned with prospects of stormy weather. Nonetheless, a nice crowd assembled for the pre-game ceremonies in the light rain. Following the announcment of the AL Royals and the NL Pirates teams, the ULLL Hometown Heroes scholarship given …

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WLVBC Ignite Takes 2nd at Tournament

13 May 2015

Ignite Takes Silver at Spring Fling resized

Western Loudoun Volleyball Club U15 Team Ignite placed second at the NVVA 15’s Spring Fling Volleyball Tournament on Sunday, May 10 at Belmont Ridge Middle School in Leesburg. Ignite met the host team, NVVA 15 Fairfax Black, in the finals. “I’m proud of each player for pushing hard through 10 …

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This Month in History

July, 1776: Loudoun’s Revolution Within A Revolution

1 Jul 2015

thismonthhistory

– By Andrea Gaines Loudoun County was heavily invested in the fight for independence from Great Britain. Loudouner Francis Lightfoot Lee was one of 56 delegates to sign the Declaration of Independence. More Loudouners served in General George Washington’s army than any other county in Virginia, and the county’s enormous …

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Mary Rose Lunde

Locks Of Hope Easy, Helpful

1 Jul 2015

Lunde new

– By Mary Rose Lunde I’m not the first one who has written about and done what I am about to describe, and I hope I’m not the last. It’s not an action that seems heroic, but it does make a difference. The best part is that no one is …

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Sarah's Closet

Go Pink … As Pink As You Like

1 Jul 2015

sarahcloset3

– By Sarah Nearis Look at these sweet and summery pink blouses and tops. Don’t you want to try one on? Some women are afraid to wear pink, thinking it’s a bit too feminine. But, pink comes in such a wide variety of shades – from soft mauves to fuchsias …

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Letters

Independence Won – Much Left To Be Done

1 Jul 2015

speak

With graduations behind us and summer vacations ahead, we have much to look forward to. My summer will be full of events and opportunities to …

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Reflections for Father’s Day, a Child’s Constitutional Rights

15 Jun 2015

Bob Ohneiser

I’ve been a licensed attorney and a father since the late 80’s. Yet, I wonder about how many of our country’s legal theories – theories …

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Minimum Wage: A Wrench in the Gears

3 Jun 2015

Dave_larock

By Delegate Dave LaRock You may have read in the news recently that the second-largest city in the United States, Los Angeles, voted to raise …

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