A Few Things Ill Considered

Sipping from the internet firehose…


This weekly posting is brought to you courtesy of H.E.Taylor. Happy reading, I hope you enjoy this week’s Global Warming news roundup

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June 15, 2008



Low Key Plug

My first novel Water was published in Canada May, 2007. The American release was in October. An Introductionto the novel is available, along with the Unpublished Forewordand the Launch Talk. An overview of my writing is available here.

<regards>
-het

P.S. Recent postings can be found in the week archive and the ancient postings can be accessed here, which should open to this.


“The framework developed in the preceding chapter focused on changing cost/benefit ratios for investment in complexity. The shift to increasing complexity, undertaken initially to relieve stress or realize an opportunity, is at first a rational, productive strategy that yields a favourable marginal return. Typically, however, continued stresses, unanticipated challenges, and the costliness of sociopolitical integration combine to lower this marginal return. As the marginal return on complexity declines, complexity as a strategy yields comparitively lower benefits at higher and higher costs. A society that cannot counter this trend, such as through acquisition of an energy subsidy, becomes vulnerable to stress surges that it is too weak or impoverished to meet, and to waning support in its population. With continuation of this trend collapse becomes a matter of mathematical probability, as over time an insurmountable stress surge becomes increasingly likely. Until such a challenge occurs, there may be a period of economic stagnation, political decline, and territorial shrinkage.”
-Joseph A. Tainter, _The Collapse of Complex Societies_, page 127