Obituary for a Failed Presidency

Obituary for a Failed Presidency | The New Yorker:

…the stalking menace of these past few years. As Trump became more powerful and less constrained by successive waves of White House advisers, he was correspondingly more and more outrageous, untruthful, and unmoored from reality. His sense of grievance and victimization escalated; so, too, did his threats, name-calling, and public provocations. He fired the F.B.I. director, a Secretary of State, an Attorney General, a Defense Secretary, three White House chiefs of staff, and two—or three, depending on whose account you believe—national-security advisers. He pardoned war criminals and boasted of complete and total vindication in the Mueller investigation, even though it offered no such thing. He forced the longest government shutdown in history when Congress would not fund his border wall—all while continuing to claim that Mexico would pay for it.

Geology 100: Exam 3 review

Geology 100: Exam 3 Review

  • Last lecture: Thu, Dec 3 (review)
  • Last day: Tues, Dec 8th
  • Final:
    • Tues, Dec 8th around 3pm until 8
    • or Tues, Dec 15th@5:20pm
    • 1.5hr
    • 40 questions
    • Geologic time and Plate Tectonics


  • When did dinosaurs Become extinct
  • How old is earth
  • Which era did dinosaurs live
  • What was the earliest form of life
  • Eras and periods of geologic time table (keep handy)
  • In what era do we live now?
  • Who is father of geology
  • Unconformity
  • Unitarism
  • What isotope for events in past 50k years
  • What is half-life
    • If 25% is left how many half-lives
  • Faunal succession
  • Which isotope is used for organic remains
  • Mesozoic super continent’s name?
  • How old is oldest oceanic crust
  • Given something like east Africa ridge what type of plate boundary
  • Where find submarine trenches and what type of plate boundary
  • How did the Andes mountains form?
  • What did Vine&Matthews explain?
  • What explains magnetic stripes orientation on ocean floor
  • What is mechanism for plate tectonics
  • What type of setting is Iceland
  • Who originated idea of continental drift and what evidence
  • Why was it rejected
  • What is the curie point?
  • What is the lithosphere
  • How were Himmalayan mountains formed
  • What is a transform plate boundary

Geology 100: vocabulary


Physical Weathering

  • Exfoliation: rock breaks apart in layers
    • Igenous rocks
    • Half Dome
    • Stone Mountain, Georgia
  • Frost Wedging
    • Shattered rocks
  • Biological
  • Abrasion: wind, ice, water

Chemical Weathering

  • mineral breakdown
  • Dissolution (dissolver in water)
  • Acid Reactions (water + CO2 carbonic acid); Water + sulfur sulfuric aside
    • H2O + CO2 + CaCO3 –> Ca+2 + 2HCO3-
  • Oxidation
  • Hydration: attachment of water to crystalline structure
  • Hydrolysis: Hydrogen and oxygen in water with rock
  • Solution: rock is dissolved in water
    • pH, temperature
    • evaporite deposits
  • Goldrich Stability series
    • Similar to Bowen’s Reaction Series but for speed to weather
    • Olivine/pyroxene + H2CO3 (acid) to clay
  • Karst landforms
    • limestone sinkhole

Erosion by Gravity

  • Rock fall
    • Talus: debris at base of a steep slope
    • Peru, 1970 Nevado Huascaran
  • Rock Slides
  • Soil Slumps
  • Mud flows
  • Lahar: 1985 Columbia: 70km!
  • Debris flow
  • Creep: leaning poles, bent trees

Erosion by water

  • Point bar: deposits from water slowing
  • Cut Bansk show erosion from fast water
  • River meanders
  • Oxbow lakes (Australian Billabong)
  • Alluvial Fans

Aswan Dam

  • 1960 – 1971
  • Formed Lake Nassar
  • Many economic tenets
  • Many ecological/economic costs

Ground Water

  • Water cycle
    • Percolation: water seeping into ground water
    • Run off to see
    • Evaporation
    • Condenstations
    • Precipitation
    • Transpiration: water from plants)


  • Movement
  • Types: Alpine, Continental

Deserts and Wind Action

Geology 100: Exam 2 review

Lecture 17: 2020-11-05

Exam 2: Tues, Nov 10

56 questions; multiple choice; 1.5hrs

Much of the material is definitions or just common sense.


  • Definition of weathering
  • Name of mineral that dissolves in carbonic acid
  • Know different types of physical and chemical weathering
    • Oxidation, hydrolisis, …
    • What is exfoliation?
  • Type of climate where chemical weathering is most effective
  • Know different agents of erosion (running water, ground water, glaciers, wind)
    • Which is most effective today
    • Which was most effect 10k ago
  • When it comes to mass wasting, what makes a slope stable (or unstable)
  • Know different types of mass wasting
    • Slide vs Slump
    • Rockfall, …
    • What is a landslide
    • What is a creep
  • What triggered landslide in Peru in 1970?

Running water (rivers)

  • What are point bars
  • What is saltation
  • How does a river carry sediments (e.g. different loads)
    • dissolved, suspended, bed load
  • What is river discharge
  • What is a delta
  • Largest river in North America
  • What is a meander stream?
  • What is oxbow lake
  • Aswan Dam
    • Where are sediments deposited
    • What may have changed?
  • What is the water table?
  • What is a stalactite vs stalagmite
  • What is porosity? Permeability?
  • What is an artesian well?
  • What is an aquifer
  • What is aquiclude
  • Why is rain water acidic?
  • What is karst topography/landscape?
  • Problems with excessive pumping of ground water


  • What portion of earth surface is covered by glaciers
  • What causes ice ages
  • What’s been happening to glaciers for past 200 years
  • Different types of glaciers
  • Where is largest glacier in world today?
  • What is a moraine? Terminal moraine? Medial moraine?
  • What kind of moraine is south fork of Long Island
  • What’s name of last ice age
  • Why drill in ice in Antarctica? What’s in the core? Climate change
  • What shape are glacial valleys
  • When was the last advance of Pleistocene
  • What happens to sea level when glaciers advance


  • Eolian is overall term from Greek god
  • Loess & dunes: wind deposits. What’s difference?
  • What is deflation surface?
  • What is desertification
  • What are barchan dunes? Parabolic dunes

Dying in a Leadership Vacuum

Who to trust?

New England Journal of Medicine

The New England Journal of Medicine for the first time in 208 years steps into politics with an editorial signed by all of the journal’s editors:

With no good options to combat a novel pathogen, countries were forced to make hard choices about how to respond. Here in the United States, our leaders have failed that test. They have taken a crisis and turned it into a tragedy.

When it comes to the response to the largest public health crisis of our time, our current political leaders have demonstrated that they are dangerously incompetent. We should not abet them and enable the deaths of thousands more Americans by allowing them to keep their jobs.

Scientific American

This follows Scientific America endorsing someone for President for the first time in it’s 187 years:

The evidence and the science show that Donald Trump has badly damaged the U.S. and its people—because he rejects evidence and science. The most devastating example is his dishonest and inept response to the COVID-19 pandemic, which cost more than 190,000 Americans their lives by the middle of September. He has also attacked environmental protections, medical care, and the researchers and public science agencies that help this country prepare for its greatest challenges. That is why we urge you to vote for Joe Biden, who is offering fact-based plans to protect our health, our economy and the environment.

Geology 100: Basic Vocabulary

Common prefixes, suffixes, and roots

  • clast: broken
  • -cline: tilted, gradient
  • de-: reduce
  • dis-: separation, opposite
  • ex-: out of, away from
  • feld: field
  • geo-: earth
  • hydro: water
  • iso: same
  • -lith: stone
  • -meso: middle
  • meta-: change
  • -morph: form, shape
  • plagio-: combining form
  • paleo-: ancient
  • pelagic: pertaining to ocean
  • pluto-: deep seated (Roman god of underworld)
  • pre-: before
  • proto-: first
  • pyro-: fire
  • spar: crystalline materials
  • -sphere: ball
  • strat-: layer
  • stria: small groove
  • sub-: under
  • super-: above
  • syn-: together
  • tecto-: build or construct. Geology means movement of structures


Here are some examples based on the above:

  • decline: reduce tilted.
  • pyroclast: fire broken.
  • stratosphere: layer sphere
  • hydrosphere: water sphere
  • isomorph: same shape
  • metamorphic: change shape
  • mesolith: middle stone
  • feldspar: field crystalline structure
  • plagioclase feldspar:


The 8 most common elements in Earth’s crust (by mass) are: 

- 46.6% Oxygen (O)
– 27.7% Silicon (Si)
– 8.1% Aluminum (Al)
– 5.0% Iron (Fe)
– 3.6% Calcium (Ca)
– 2.8% Sodium (Na)
– 2.6% Potassium (K)
– 2.1% Magnesium (Mg)

  • Potassium feldspar, potassium (K), aluminum (Al), silicon (Si), and oxygen (O).

Geology 100: Exam 1 review

Lecture 08: 2020-10-01 — Thu Oct 1, 2020


No class previous two lectures

  • Strategy:
    • Review powerpoint
    • Listen lectures
  • Formation of the Universe, Solar System, Earth
    • How did planets form
    • How old is Earth
    • What is core of earth made of
    • Order of layers in Earth
    • How did atmosphere get oxygen?
    • Difference between inner and outer (terrestrial vs jovian)
  • Minerals
    • ionic vs covalent bonding
    • proton, neutron, electron
    • Hardest mineral?
    • Why is hardest?
    • Which two most abundant elements in crust of the earth
    • What are silicates?
    • Why are Feromagnesian sillicates dark?
    • Softest mineral (Mohs hardness scale)
    • What is cleavage in minerals?
    • What are isotopes
    • What is nucleus of atom made of?
    • Definition of a rock
    • What are 3 different types of rocks
    • What is magma? What is lava
    • 3 type of magam: felsic, intermediate, mafic
    • What is obsidian
    • Order of crystallization in the Bowen reaction series
    • Difference between inclusive and exclusive rocks
    • What is porphritic text in igneous rocks
    • Dominant mineral in limestone and marble
    • What kind of rock is coal?
    • What is dominant mineral in salt
    • What is foliation
    • What is difference between intrusive and extrusive rocks
    • Difference between contact and regional metamorphism
  • Volcanoes
    • What is a lahar
    • Most active volcanoe
    • Three different types of volcanoes: shield, cone, strata
    • What is a pyroclastic flow
    • How many active volcanoes in the world?
    • What is a caldera
    • Difference between active, extinct, and dormant volcanoes
    • Which Hawaiian island is likely to erupt
    • Pacific rim of fire is where most composite volcanoes are located
    • What kind of volcano is Mt. St. Helens
    • What type of geologic setting are the Hawaiian islands?
    • What is a Plinian eruption?
    • If Yellowstone erupted today how much ash would fall in New York?
    • what is the difference between a VEI 5 and a VEI 7
    • Which volcano was a VEI 8 eruption 74,000 years ago (caused global climate change for next few years; decrease in homosapian population down to 12,000)

The Confederacy Wasn’t What You Think

From The Atlantic The Confederacy Wasn’t What You Think describes the Confederate Stats of America as nothing to do with states rights and everything to do with slavery and embraced centralized authority:

It purged the original of euphemisms, using the term slaves instead of other persons in its three-fifths and fugitive-slave clauses. It bound the Congress and territorial governments to recognize and protect “the institution of negro slavery.” But the centerpiece of the Confederate constitution—the words that upend any attempt to cast it simply as a copy of the original—was a wholly new clause that prohibited the government from ever changing the law of slavery: “No … law denying or impairing the right of property in negro slaves shall be passed.” It also moved to limit democracy by explicitly confining the right to vote to white men.

I always remind myself that they seceded before Lincoln became president.