Center for Strategic Communication

[ by Charles Cameron — forecasting, reli and otherwise ]

As I write, there are fires still raging in the area of Colorado Springs, Colorado.


Years ago (in October, 1982?) I lived in a little place called El Nido, the Nest, about half way up Corral Canyon in Malibu, California. My papers were there, a decade’s worth of my thinking and writing, all highly flammable. I was in Santa Monica as it happened, watching a wildfire that had jumped the many lanes of the Ventura Freeway — eucalyptus bark carries flame nicely in a high wind — and was pouring down the dry scrub hills towards the coast, and I heard a police spokesman say the fire had been diverted into two mostly uninhabited canyons — Corral and Latigo — to avoid any risk of the fire reaching the prestigious Malibu Colony a little ways down the road.

That fire burned to within fifteen feet of our house.

The Colorado Springs fires are in the immediate vicinity of the US Air Force Academy, in and around the city the Guardian calls “the ‘evangelical Vatican’” and NPR “a Mecca for Evangelical Christians”.


When Hurricane Katrina flooded 80% of New Orleans in August 2005, Pastor John Hagee said:

All hurricanes are acts of God, because God controls the heavens. I believe that New Orleans had a level of sin that was offensive to God, and they are — were recipients of the judgment of God for that. … I believe that the Hurricane Katrina was, in fact, the judgment of God against the city of New Orleans.

When Haiti was hit by a 7.0 magnitude earthquake in 2010, killing 300,000 and rendering more than a million people homeless, one-time pastor Pat Robertson said:

Something happened a long time ago in Haiti and people might not want to talk about. … They were under the heel of the French, you know Napoleon the third and whatever. And they got together and swore a pact to the devil. They said ‘We will serve you if you will get us free from the prince.’ True story. And so the devil said, ‘Ok it’s a deal.’ And they kicked the French out. The Haitians revolted and got something themselves free. But ever since they have been cursed by one thing after another…

Now it’s the turn of Colorado Springs, the Evangelical Vatican or Mecca.


Here’s Joel Rosenberg blogging on the topic of the Colorado Springs fires:

Thousands of years ago, God told the Hebrew prophet Haggai to write down these words: “For thus says the Lord of hosts, ‘Once more in a little while, I am going to shake the heavens and the earth, the sea also and the dry land. I will shake all the nations. . . . I am going to shake the heavens and the earth. I will overthrow the thrones of kingdoms and destroy the power of the kingdoms of the nations’” (Haggai 2:6-7, 21-22). This is Bible prophecy. This is an intercept from the mind of the all-knowing, all-seeing God of the universe. It is a weather report from the future, if you will, a storm warning.

His headline?


Juan Cole has a different set of resources, a different worldview:

Over the coming decades, the American Southwest will become drier and warmer as a result of all the carbon dioxide and soot that the US, China and other industrial societies are dumping into the atmosphere.

[ … ]

Professor Max A. Moritz at the Department of Environmental Science, Policy, and Management, University of California, Berkeley and his colleagues find the long-term probability of increase of forest fires in the American southwest is high.

Texas and Arizona are among those states at risk — further evidence that the Red States that engage in active climate change denial are committing suicide. I suspect most Coloradans know exactly what is happening to them and why, and my heart goes out to them.


It appears that Boulder, too, may be under some degree of threat, and is preparing for possible evacuation.

Boulder, as very distinct from Colorado Springs, is where the Buddhists thrive — home of Naropa University and much more besides.

Best watch out, Boulder. Some Buddhists — as true to the Buddha’s teaching, perhaps, as Rev. Hagee is to those of Christ — hold views about Karma that seem remarkably similar to Rev. Hagee’s views about the wrath of God.

I’m thinking of Sharon Stone:

Stone, 50, who was speaking to reporters at the Cannes film festival, criticised the Chinese government’s actions in Tibet and directly linked them to the disaster: “I’ve been concerned about how should we deal with the Olympics, because they are not being nice to the Dalai Lama, who is a good friend of mine,” she said. “And then all this earthquake and all this stuff happened, and I thought, is that karma – when you’re not nice that the bad things happen to you?”


God, nature or karma — whatever it is, it appears to be an equal-opportunity creator and destroyer.

We’re human.

With our heads, we’d like to explain and blame. With our hearts we are terrified, concerned, meditate, pray, fear, love. And help.