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Editor’s note: Michael Ackley’s columns may include satire and parody based on current events, and thus mix fact with fiction. He assumes informed readers will be able to tell which is which.

One hates to see a fine acronym go to waste, but it looks like ACORN is on the way to the dust bin. We must do what we can to find a suitable replacement.

Some chapters of the Association of Community Organizations for Reform Now are changing their names in the wake of scandals that have made fund raising difficult. It seems few respectable organizations – or even politicians – are willing to contribute to an organization tied to voter fraud or whose employees have cheerfully given advice on the establishment of child brothels.

Never mind that an ACORN spokesman has characterized the scandals as “vicious, right-wing attacks.” From the organization’s perspective on the far edge of the far left, just about everything appears right-wing.

Anyway, we learn from the New York Post that in Brooklyn ACORN has been dissolved and then reconstituted as “New York Communities for Change.” Sadly, its organizers missed the opportunity to become “New York Communities for Spare Change.” The more piquant title would have reflected the outfit’s status after the speaker of the City Council froze ACORN’s funding.

“New York ACORN has closed its doors in New York City [and] there was a desire on the part of former members and staff to chart a new course with a new, independent organization that would get back to the basics of organizing,” said an NYCC spokesman.

NYCC – there’s a sad replacement for the compact, two-syllable, logo-ready symbol of the disgraced organization. Given NYCC’s takeover of ACORN’s old lease and the comfortable transition of board members and staff to the new effort, it seems reasonable that it should seek an adequately nutty replacement acronym.

Though we never have been good at composing such things, we’ve come up with a couple of ideas to get the ball rolling. Thus we submit:

  • PECAN (Profligates Extracting Congressional Assets Nefariously) and
  • WALNUT (Working Assiduously to Leave Nothing Untouched in the Treasury) or, to preserve the “Now” of ACORN, WALNUT (Willing Anarchists Leaving Nothing Unlooted Today).

OK, these are lame. Perhaps you can do something better, maybe with MACADAMIA or PISTACHIO – or simply, NUT.

Climate change?

We are just short-timers on Earth, but in our human arrogance, we think if something is new to us, it’s new to the planet. And further, in our arrogance, we think if it’s new, we must have had something to do with it.

Thus we have had “global warming,” which has morphed into “climate change.” This scare has been an easy sell to a population ever ready to elevate the role of mankind. It puts me in mind of California’s great freeze of 1972.

In December of that year the San Francisco Bay Area experienced a cold snap unlike any in memory. The thermometer plummeted toward zero, and the temperature didn’t top freezing for more than a week.

Bay Area residents are used to chill weather. You haven’t felt really cold until you’ve forgotten your sweater there on a damp, foggy, 50-degree day. But this was arctic-circle cold, and old-timers allowed they had never experienced anything like it. Snow fell on the higher peaks and ridges surrounding the urbanized basin, and the rim of white remained for days and days.

There were casualties among the regional flora. Specifically, groves of stately eucalyptus trees withered and died, dumping drifts of shriveled leaves at their feet and dropping heavy “widow-maker” branches into the crackled foliage.

There was speculation that after more than 10,000 years of rising global temperatures, the ice age had simply been on holiday and was returning with a vengeance. However, there was a voice of calm. One of the directors of a local park district – a professor of biology – pointed out that the only green things dying were the “eucs.”

He noted that all the native plants – the oaks, the madrones, the coffee berries, the redwoods – were just fine. The eucalyptus trees, however, were exotics, imported from Australia around 1910.

“We think this cold is something new, having been around here only a couple of hundred years,” said the professor. “But the native plants have evolved over the millenia, and they’re doing fine because they’ve seen such temperatures – and survived them – before.”

Now we “brief candles” (to borrow from Shakespeare) think we’re responsible. There were similar thoughts when unusual weather was experienced during World War I. At that time, some people thought it was due to the massive artillery barrages in Europe. As with all things pertaining to climate, this was impossible to disprove. So, who was to say those climate theorists were wrong?

Our tiny span of time on Earth is something to keep in mind as it becomes more and more clear that “man-caused global warming” – or “climate change” – is a fabrication of “scientists” who very likely have confused correlation with causality – and cooked the books to reinforce their thesis.

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