apocalypse https://scienceblogs.com/ en A high quality conservative journal asks if Trump is "stupid or nefarious" https://scienceblogs.com/gregladen/2017/04/20/a-high-quality-conservative-journal-asks-if-trump-is-stupid-or-nefarious <span>A high quality conservative journal asks if Trump is &quot;stupid or nefarious&quot;</span> <div class="field field--name-body field--type-text-with-summary field--label-hidden field--item"><p>This is alarming and sobering. I was already alarmed and sober, but in case you were not, take heed. </p> <iframe src="http://player.theplatform.com/p/7wvmTC/MSNBCEmbeddedOffSite?guid=n_maddow_astupfarious_170418" height="500" width="635" scrolling="no" border="no"></iframe></div> <span><a title="View user profile." href="/author/gregladen" lang="" about="/author/gregladen" typeof="schema:Person" property="schema:name" datatype="">gregladen</a></span> <span>Thu, 04/20/2017 - 08:08</span> <div class="field field--name-field-blog-tags field--type-entity-reference field--label-inline"> <div class="field--label">Tags</div> <div class="field--items"> <div class="field--item"><a href="/tag/president-donald-trump" hreflang="en">President Donald Trump</a></div> <div class="field--item"><a href="/tag/apocalypse" hreflang="en">apocalypse</a></div> <div class="field--item"><a href="/tag/trump" hreflang="en">Trump</a></div> </div> </div> <section> <article data-comment-user-id="0" id="comment-1481066" class="js-comment comment-wrapper clearfix"> <mark class="hidden" data-comment-timestamp="1492693754"></mark> <div class="well"> <strong></strong> <div class="field field--name-comment-body field--type-text-long field--label-hidden field--item"><p>[X] Ailes [X] O'Reilly [ ] Trump</p> </div> <drupal-render-placeholder callback="comment.lazy_builders:renderLinks" arguments="0=1481066&amp;1=default&amp;2=en&amp;3=" token="Z1J6E6xvberBOOGDhD92dZLu57RQGO9R0WZNRWlBy7o"></drupal-render-placeholder> </div> <footer> <em>By <span lang="" typeof="schema:Person" property="schema:name" datatype="">Arthur T. Murray (not verified)</span> on 20 Apr 2017 <a href="https://scienceblogs.com/taxonomy/term/4838/feed#comment-1481066">#permalink</a></em> <article typeof="schema:Person" about="/user/0"> <div class="field field--name-user-picture field--type-image field--label-hidden field--item"> <a href="/user/0" hreflang="und"><img src="/files/styles/thumbnail/public/default_images/icon-user.png?itok=yQw_eG_q" width="100" height="100" alt="User Image" typeof="foaf:Image" class="img-responsive" /> </a> </div> </article> </footer> </article> <article data-comment-user-id="0" id="comment-1481067" class="js-comment comment-wrapper clearfix"> <mark class="hidden" data-comment-timestamp="1492704892"></mark> <div class="well"> <strong></strong> <div class="field field--name-comment-body field--type-text-long field--label-hidden field--item"><p>Yes - both are true. He is both stupid and nefarious. Stupid in his understanding of how various cultures/countries react to his antics and nefarious in his dealings.</p> </div> <drupal-render-placeholder callback="comment.lazy_builders:renderLinks" arguments="0=1481067&amp;1=default&amp;2=en&amp;3=" token="sjRy-9aM8UH7iZbWzbLi-kxHfGvTtsciH5VcX95inSY"></drupal-render-placeholder> </div> <footer> <em>By <span lang="" typeof="schema:Person" property="schema:name" datatype="">David Jones (not verified)</span> on 20 Apr 2017 <a href="https://scienceblogs.com/taxonomy/term/4838/feed#comment-1481067">#permalink</a></em> <article typeof="schema:Person" about="/user/0"> <div class="field field--name-user-picture field--type-image field--label-hidden field--item"> <a href="/user/0" hreflang="und"><img src="/files/styles/thumbnail/public/default_images/icon-user.png?itok=yQw_eG_q" width="100" height="100" alt="User Image" typeof="foaf:Image" class="img-responsive" /> </a> </div> </article> </footer> </article> <article data-comment-user-id="0" id="comment-1481068" class="js-comment comment-wrapper clearfix"> <mark class="hidden" data-comment-timestamp="1492750952"></mark> <div class="well"> <strong></strong> <div class="field field--name-comment-body field--type-text-long field--label-hidden field--item"><p>The precedent Rachel is looking for can be found in the biography of Captain Peter Peachfuzz. From Wikipedia.."Peachfuzz was, from his youngest days, an incompetent sailor. As a child, even his toy boats sank. At the age of 18 he joined the navy. He was awarded numerous medals, all of which were donated by the enemy. Sailing the wrong way through the Panama Canal and becoming the only captain of an icebreaker in the South Seas earned him the nickname "Wrong Way" (an allusion to the American pilot Douglas "Wrong Way" Corrigan). After receiving a large inheritance from an aunt he purchased and took command of the S.S. Andalusia.. His crew considered mutiny but decided rather to install a dummy control room, so that Peachfuzz would think he was in command, while the crew actually controlled the ship from another location. Unfortunately, Peachfuzz takes a wrong turn and winds up in the real control room."</p> </div> <drupal-render-placeholder callback="comment.lazy_builders:renderLinks" arguments="0=1481068&amp;1=default&amp;2=en&amp;3=" token="rA6BI0u_s2fcVtklIxm4FcW_WcMgbbXBHGnJPKn0T5M"></drupal-render-placeholder> </div> <footer> <em>By <span lang="" typeof="schema:Person" property="schema:name" datatype="">SteveP (not verified)</span> on 21 Apr 2017 <a href="https://scienceblogs.com/taxonomy/term/4838/feed#comment-1481068">#permalink</a></em> <article typeof="schema:Person" about="/user/0"> <div class="field field--name-user-picture field--type-image field--label-hidden field--item"> <a href="/user/0" hreflang="und"><img src="/files/styles/thumbnail/public/default_images/icon-user.png?itok=yQw_eG_q" width="100" height="100" alt="User Image" typeof="foaf:Image" class="img-responsive" /> </a> </div> </article> </footer> </article> <article data-comment-user-id="0" id="comment-1481069" class="js-comment comment-wrapper clearfix"> <mark class="hidden" data-comment-timestamp="1492866425"></mark> <div class="well"> <strong></strong> <div class="field field--name-comment-body field--type-text-long field--label-hidden field--item"><p>Hanlon's (or Heinlein's) Razor admonishes us not to attribute to malice that which is adequately explained by stupidity. </p> <p>The trouble is that there are plenty of both in the world, and they often co-exist in the same person. Which is dominant? Does it matter?</p> </div> <drupal-render-placeholder callback="comment.lazy_builders:renderLinks" arguments="0=1481069&amp;1=default&amp;2=en&amp;3=" token="iRhvvwgUqXbjBxl7uBnglzBwImG9qxzRUkihwX70xJg"></drupal-render-placeholder> </div> <footer> <em>By <span lang="" typeof="schema:Person" property="schema:name" datatype="">Mal Adapted (not verified)</span> on 22 Apr 2017 <a href="https://scienceblogs.com/taxonomy/term/4838/feed#comment-1481069">#permalink</a></em> <article typeof="schema:Person" about="/user/0"> <div class="field field--name-user-picture field--type-image field--label-hidden field--item"> <a href="/user/0" hreflang="und"><img src="/files/styles/thumbnail/public/default_images/icon-user.png?itok=yQw_eG_q" width="100" height="100" alt="User Image" typeof="foaf:Image" class="img-responsive" /> </a> </div> </article> </footer> </article> <article data-comment-user-id="0" id="comment-1481070" class="js-comment comment-wrapper clearfix"> <mark class="hidden" data-comment-timestamp="1492882285"></mark> <div class="well"> <strong></strong> <div class="field field--name-comment-body field--type-text-long field--label-hidden field--item"><p>It can be that malice is better. At least then there's a way to fix it: the actor is capable of it.</p> <p>Incompetence tends to remain unmoved, because it's frequently the maximum ability possible.</p> </div> <drupal-render-placeholder callback="comment.lazy_builders:renderLinks" arguments="0=1481070&amp;1=default&amp;2=en&amp;3=" token="5HR5FNpsU7FpkChfPyVBwmi-yrbz0tsvwDOCURzCMp8"></drupal-render-placeholder> </div> <footer> <em>By <span lang="" typeof="schema:Person" property="schema:name" datatype="">Wow (not verified)</span> on 22 Apr 2017 <a href="https://scienceblogs.com/taxonomy/term/4838/feed#comment-1481070">#permalink</a></em> <article typeof="schema:Person" about="/user/0"> <div class="field field--name-user-picture field--type-image field--label-hidden field--item"> <a href="/user/0" hreflang="und"><img src="/files/styles/thumbnail/public/default_images/icon-user.png?itok=yQw_eG_q" width="100" height="100" alt="User Image" typeof="foaf:Image" class="img-responsive" /> </a> </div> </article> </footer> </article> <article data-comment-user-id="0" id="comment-1481071" class="js-comment comment-wrapper clearfix"> <mark class="hidden" data-comment-timestamp="1492883492"></mark> <div class="well"> <strong></strong> <div class="field field--name-comment-body field--type-text-long field--label-hidden field--item"><p>You're on to something, Wow. On the march for Science today, I conversed with a retired microbiologist and college administrator in Oklahoma. He said he'd had as much face time with Sen. James Inhofe, R-OK, as he could stand. He told me he thinks Inhofe simply doesn't have the intellectual wattage to think for himself on AGW or any number of other science-related topics. In Inhofe's case, while malice can't be ruled out, it isn't required to explain his behavior. </p> <p>I was actually disappointed to hear it, for the reasons Wow mentions.</p> </div> <drupal-render-placeholder callback="comment.lazy_builders:renderLinks" arguments="0=1481071&amp;1=default&amp;2=en&amp;3=" token="VxEyYsMH4nui5TqZru6bXN6DmN_1AAzU97L_T_-ppwg"></drupal-render-placeholder> </div> <footer> <em>By <span lang="" typeof="schema:Person" property="schema:name" datatype="">Mal Adapted (not verified)</span> on 22 Apr 2017 <a href="https://scienceblogs.com/taxonomy/term/4838/feed#comment-1481071">#permalink</a></em> <article typeof="schema:Person" about="/user/0"> <div class="field field--name-user-picture field--type-image field--label-hidden field--item"> <a href="/user/0" hreflang="und"><img src="/files/styles/thumbnail/public/default_images/icon-user.png?itok=yQw_eG_q" width="100" height="100" alt="User Image" typeof="foaf:Image" class="img-responsive" /> </a> </div> </article> </footer> </article> <article data-comment-user-id="0" id="comment-1481072" class="js-comment comment-wrapper clearfix"> <mark class="hidden" data-comment-timestamp="1493416614"></mark> <div class="well"> <strong></strong> <div class="field field--name-comment-body field--type-text-long field--label-hidden field--item"><p>What is it with the war lords bags under his eyes. Gross!</p> </div> <drupal-render-placeholder callback="comment.lazy_builders:renderLinks" arguments="0=1481072&amp;1=default&amp;2=en&amp;3=" token="KX7hXqsTq_yEx1Q7gyVNln0JkEeSV8TjYRM2SMoOdys"></drupal-render-placeholder> </div> <footer> <em>By <span lang="" typeof="schema:Person" property="schema:name" datatype="">Marge Cullen (not verified)</span> on 28 Apr 2017 <a href="https://scienceblogs.com/taxonomy/term/4838/feed#comment-1481072">#permalink</a></em> <article typeof="schema:Person" about="/user/0"> <div class="field field--name-user-picture field--type-image field--label-hidden field--item"> <a href="/user/0" hreflang="und"><img src="/files/styles/thumbnail/public/default_images/icon-user.png?itok=yQw_eG_q" width="100" height="100" alt="User Image" typeof="foaf:Image" class="img-responsive" /> </a> </div> </article> </footer> </article> </section> <ul class="links inline list-inline"><li class="comment-forbidden"><a href="/user/login?destination=/gregladen/2017/04/20/a-high-quality-conservative-journal-asks-if-trump-is-stupid-or-nefarious%23comment-form">Log in</a> to post comments</li></ul> Thu, 20 Apr 2017 12:08:20 +0000 gregladen 34353 at https://scienceblogs.com Arrival, Eschatology, and Philip K. Dick https://scienceblogs.com/seed/2016/11/21/arrival-eschatology-and-philip-k-dick <span>Arrival, Eschatology, and Philip K. Dick</span> <div class="field field--name-body field--type-text-with-summary field--label-hidden field--item"><p>The new film <em>Arrival</em>, based on a story by Ted Chiang, is unlike most any science fiction blockbuster at the box office these days. It's a tense, thoughtful, somber meditation on the human condition and the nature of a higher reality. In many ways, it is a religious film that deals with eschatology (the end times or judgment day).</p> <p><a href="http://scienceblogs.com/principles/2016/11/19/arrival-thoughts/">Unlike Chad Orzel</a>, I haven't read the source material, so I experienced the film with fresh eyes. I was immediately reminded of Philip K. Dick and his real-life experience of being 'touched by an angel.' Dick, both a life-long Christian and prolific author of fantastical science fiction scenarios, felt that he <a href="https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/The_Exegesis_of_Philip_K._Dick">had come into contact with the Logos</a>, which he alternately identified as Jesus Christ, and so experienced a deeply personal revelation about the nature and meaning of time. Dick had many names for the entity he came into contact with, including VALIS (for Vast Active Living Intelligence System). VALIS proved to Dick that temporal causality flowed in both directions, both from past to future and from future to past. Note that Hollywood loves adapting Dick's work, having done so with <em>Blade Runner</em>, <em>Minority Report</em>, <em>Paycheck</em>, <em>Total Recall</em>, and others. Dick's fiction is also the basis for Amazon's series <em>The Man in the High Castle</em>. After coming into contact with VALIS, Dick came to believe that all his work, which had once seemed to him fantastical, was actually a deep metaphor for reality. Part of his insight was the idea that ancient Rome never ended; that the world as we know it is really a black iron prison.</p> <p>In <em>Arrival</em>, the central character of Dr. Louise Banks seems to flashback to the death of her child from cancer. It appears that random moments from her past begin to make sense in the present (as they do in <a href="https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Signs_(film)"><em>Signs</em> by M. Night Shyamalan</a>). This would be a synchronistic scenario, a view that everything happens for a reason, and well-aligned with what Dick experienced. In the moment of his revelation he felt that he had been programmed from birth by VALIS with seemingly random signs, symbols, and cosmological ideas, which only later made sense as part of a grand design.</p> <p>But it turns out <em>Arrival</em> is not quite Dickian in its conception of cause and effect; Louise isn't remembering important moments from her past, she is witnessing important moments from her future. This places her in the same vein as a prophet or oracle. Her ability to flash-forward is not well explained and she seems to be the only human being capable of precognition. Her exceptional nature has religious connotations as well; her indispensability in the salvation of Earth is akin to the return of Christ itself. She is, in fact, a messiah.</p> <p>The film begins with twelve alien ships positioning themselves around the planet, proximal to different cultures with different languages (compare this to Revelation 12:1, 'A great sign appeared in heaven: a woman clothed with the sun, with the moon under her feet and a crown of twelve stars on her head'). The aliens are menacing, squidlike, incomprehensible. As a linguist, Louise is sent to speak with them. The nature of language is central to the thesis of the film, and according to Chad, language issues feature much more prominently in the source material by Chiang. Louise explains that languages are not neatly interchangeable, and in fact the language(s) one speaks determine the way one thinks. For example, early in the film she comments that the Sanskrit word for 'war' is best translated into English as 'a desire for more cows.' When the aliens in their twelve ships express a concept that she translates into the word 'weapon,' Louise is quick to note that they might really mean 'tool.' When she further deciphers the alien's message to mean 'give weapon,' she has reason to believe that they are offering humanity a gift. But the Chinese, half a world away, believe that their aliens are saying "use weapon." Distrust and fear from military types on all arcs of the globe quickly threaten to lead to war. The future hangs on by a thread.</p> <p>It is only Louise realizing that she can remember the future that allows her to prevent global destruction. <em>Arrival</em> is solved with a paradox: Louise has a memory of the future in which the Chinese General tells her what she said to him in the past in order to avert the war. This is the only way she knows what to say to him in the present. Does that make sense? Of course the aliens have come to Earth for paradoxical reasons as well; they are giving a tool to humanity because they will need humanity's help 3,000 years in the future.</p> <p>All this differs from Dick's conception of reverse causality; Dick did not experience visions of his personal future, but he realized that the future was nonetheless communicating with him, and had been all his life. It was not Dick's memories of the future, but VALIS's memories of the future, that created orthogonal axes of cause and effect in his mind.</p> <p>As Louise ultimately asks, with the knowledge that falling in love will eventually lead to the death of her child from cancer, “If you could see your whole life laid out in front of you, would you change things?” For that matter, could you?</p> </div> <span><a title="View user profile." href="/author/milhayser" lang="" about="/author/milhayser" typeof="schema:Person" property="schema:name" datatype="">milhayser</a></span> <span>Mon, 11/21/2016 - 17:16</span> <div class="field field--name-field-blog-tags field--type-entity-reference field--label-inline"> <div class="field--label">Tags</div> <div class="field--items"> <div class="field--item"><a href="/tag/misc" hreflang="en">Misc</a></div> <div class="field--item"><a href="/tag/apocalypse" hreflang="en">apocalypse</a></div> <div class="field--item"><a href="/tag/armageddon" hreflang="en">Armageddon</a></div> <div class="field--item"><a href="/tag/arrival" hreflang="en">Arrival</a></div> <div class="field--item"><a href="/tag/cinema" hreflang="en">Cinema</a></div> <div class="field--item"><a href="/tag/eschatology" hreflang="en">Eschatology</a></div> <div class="field--item"><a href="/tag/heptapods" hreflang="en">Heptapods</a></div> <div class="field--item"><a href="/tag/language" hreflang="en">Language</a></div> <div class="field--item"><a href="/tag/logos" hreflang="en">logos</a></div> <div class="field--item"><a href="/tag/paradox" hreflang="en">Paradox</a></div> <div class="field--item"><a href="/tag/philip-k-dick" hreflang="en">Philip K. Dick</a></div> <div class="field--item"><a href="/tag/revelation" hreflang="en">Revelation</a></div> <div class="field--item"><a href="/tag/reverse-causality" hreflang="en">Reverse Causality</a></div> <div class="field--item"><a href="/tag/review" hreflang="en">Review</a></div> <div class="field--item"><a href="/tag/sapir-whorf-hypothesis" hreflang="en">Sapir-Whorf Hypothesis</a></div> <div class="field--item"><a href="/tag/ted-chiang" hreflang="en">Ted Chiang</a></div> <div class="field--item"><a href="/tag/translation" hreflang="en">translation</a></div> <div class="field--item"><a href="/tag/valis" hreflang="en">VALIS</a></div> <div class="field--item"><a href="/tag/war-0" hreflang="en">war</a></div> </div> </div> <section> <article data-comment-user-id="0" id="comment-1900030" class="js-comment comment-wrapper clearfix"> <mark class="hidden" data-comment-timestamp="1479797745"></mark> <div class="well"> <strong></strong> <div class="field field--name-comment-body field--type-text-long field--label-hidden field--item"><p>Wesley, thanks for having the courage to discuss religious themes in the film without the usual obligatory putdowns that often occur in such discussions in these pages. In the cinema as well as in novels, it's reasonable for us to expect authors and screenwriters to get the hard science correct. But it's also reasonable to expect them to speak to other sources of deep meaning in the lives of the characters and their societies, including their families, and including religion. </p> <p>I'm inclined to think that the idea of scalar time or retrocausality in physics, is becoming more widely known to the general public. As with special relativity and quantum entanglement, it runs contrary to our normal intuitions, and yet when illustrated in narrative, becomes easier to grasp even if imperfectly. This becomes particularly poignant when a character has to question whether something they feel or know, was caused by events in the past or events in the future.</p> <p>In contrast, the idea that language shapes cognition, is something that most of us intuitively take for granted as true, spiced up with well-known examples from product branding and advertising. Yet we often, or perhaps almost always, fail to grasp the depth and degree to which this operates, and the ways it affects relations between peoples, communities, and nations. So once again, when illustrated in narrative, it becomes easier to grasp. </p> <p>The root question underlying both is, as you suggested, "If you knew, would you act differently? Could you?" If you knew what another person actually intended, would you treat them differently? If you knew what each choice in a decision would subsequently cause, would you choose more wisely? </p> <p>In the end I have to believe that the answer to all of those question is a resounding YES. Yet the news is full of examples where looming disasters were clearly seen and yet denied in pursuit of trivial gratifications, from drunk driving to climate denialism. On the other hand, perhaps those such cases are newsworthy precisely because humans failed to act on what they knew of others' intentions, or what they knew of the probable future results of their own actions. </p> <p>In the end we have to believe that the intelligence, creativity, and empathy, that have charted and understood the universe from the smallest observable scale to the largest, that have given us works of the arts and humanities that have stood for centuries and millennia, that have given us the capacity for good will toward others who on the surface are unlike ourselves: we have to believe that these faculties of ours, honed over Darwinian time, give us the capacity to continue to make wise choices. To think otherwise is the short path toward both nihilism and the caves.</p> </div> <drupal-render-placeholder callback="comment.lazy_builders:renderLinks" arguments="0=1900030&amp;1=default&amp;2=en&amp;3=" token="_xMgR4OOK35yK5zRzoAmffC1AU5d8Nbkt8kDz1B0crg"></drupal-render-placeholder> </div> <footer> <em>By <span lang="" typeof="schema:Person" property="schema:name" datatype="">G (not verified)</span> on 22 Nov 2016 <a href="https://scienceblogs.com/taxonomy/term/4838/feed#comment-1900030">#permalink</a></em> <article typeof="schema:Person" about="/user/0"> <div class="field field--name-user-picture field--type-image field--label-hidden field--item"> <a href="/user/0" hreflang="und"><img src="/files/styles/thumbnail/public/default_images/icon-user.png?itok=yQw_eG_q" width="100" height="100" alt="User Image" typeof="foaf:Image" class="img-responsive" /> </a> </div> </article> </footer> </article> <article data-comment-user-id="0" id="comment-1900031" class="js-comment comment-wrapper clearfix"> <mark class="hidden" data-comment-timestamp="1488784795"></mark> <div class="well"> <strong></strong> <div class="field field--name-comment-body field--type-text-long field--label-hidden field--item"><p>You two seem to be the only people who really grasp the concept in which this film was written. Generally I find people can only look at things from a person view, and not realize everything it's trying to say. </p> <p>I feel that religion, science, and theology come together and form a grand message that people generally can't or don't desire to realise. As the way it's told it's almost is if you must already have some grasp on this concept the make the connection between it being just a story and the message hidden inside it. As do the other story's written By the auther, all culminating to one powerfully realization of the truth about "the story of all of us". It's not only a title but also a representation of what it's message was intended to mean, and what all his books are intended spark inside it's readers. He hides truth and theology inside story's as science fiction. As this is the only way to really allow people to even comprehend his message, while also being able to send that message out to people in a way they will receive and he will not be ridiculed for. Over all this movie and all of the books have a powerful insight and message with many underlying more important meanings that sadly few people will ever truly understand.</p> </div> <drupal-render-placeholder callback="comment.lazy_builders:renderLinks" arguments="0=1900031&amp;1=default&amp;2=en&amp;3=" token="nSBW8vtILFFcbEjMLQPN6-qf0L1CDMlRu7LXGk9TGSs"></drupal-render-placeholder> </div> <footer> <em>By <span lang="" typeof="schema:Person" property="schema:name" datatype="">B (not verified)</span> on 06 Mar 2017 <a href="https://scienceblogs.com/taxonomy/term/4838/feed#comment-1900031">#permalink</a></em> <article typeof="schema:Person" about="/user/0"> <div class="field field--name-user-picture field--type-image field--label-hidden field--item"> <a href="/user/0" hreflang="und"><img src="/files/styles/thumbnail/public/default_images/icon-user.png?itok=yQw_eG_q" width="100" height="100" alt="User Image" typeof="foaf:Image" class="img-responsive" /> </a> </div> </article> </footer> </article> </section> <ul class="links inline list-inline"><li class="comment-forbidden"><a href="/user/login?destination=/seed/2016/11/21/arrival-eschatology-and-philip-k-dick%23comment-form">Log in</a> to post comments</li></ul> Mon, 21 Nov 2016 22:16:02 +0000 milhayser 69274 at https://scienceblogs.com The microbiology of zombies, part II: ineffective treatments and how not to survive the apocalypse https://scienceblogs.com/aetiology/2013/10/28/the-microbiology-of-zombies-part-ii-ineffective-treatments-and-how-not-to-survive-the-apocalypse <span>The microbiology of zombies, part II: ineffective treatments and how not to survive the apocalypse</span> <div class="field field--name-body field--type-text-with-summary field--label-hidden field--item"><p>(Spoilers. And things.)</p> <p>After the start of season 4 of the Walking Dead and the <a href="http://www.slate.com/articles/health_and_science/medical_examiner/2013/10/the_walking_dead_virus_the_epidemiology_and_science_of_zombies.html">introduction of a new nemesis</a>: a fast-spreading, deadly infectious disease that seems to be a strain of influenza, I was looking forward to the plot arc of this season.</p> <p>And then episode 3, <a href="http://www.amctv.com/shows/the-walking-dead/episodes/season-4/isolation">"Isolation"</a>, happened. From an infectious disease standpoint, I say, bah.</p> <p>At the end of the previous episode, <a href="http://www.amctv.com/shows/the-walking-dead/episodes/season-4/infected">"Infected"</a>, the group had decided to lock up anyone who was showing signs of the infectious disease within the death row cellblock, so that they would not further spread the disease, and to put the children and elderly (as the most vulnerable population) in another area to keep them safe from the infection. Quickly it was seen that this wasn't working well, as people were becoming sick all over and more and more were moving into the isolation cellblock.</p> <p>So, a council meeting was called of the leaders of the group. One of the decisions which was made, on the advice of Hershel the veterinarian, was to try to scavenge supplies from a college of veterinary medicine approximately 50 miles away from their location at the prison. What supplies?</p> <p>ANTIBIOTICS.</p> <p>For the micro people reading, you'll see why my rage started boiling a bit at this point. Hershel was the one who'd suggested this was an influenza outbreak (and therefore, caused by a virus) in the prior episode. He is familiar with the disease (and there is another physician, Dr. Subramanian, who has been treating the ill and has seen the rapid course of the disease--of course, he is now sick himself). It is true that influenza can be complicated by a secondary bacterial infection: that those sick with the flu could develop pneumonia due to <i>Staphylococcus aureus</i> or other bacteria, and that these bacterial infections would respond to antibiotic treatment. <b>But</b>, when the course of disease is as rapid as it appears to be during this outbreak, it's more likely that people are dying from primary influenza infections, which are most certainly NOT treatable with antibiotics. There are antiviral drugs that can treat influenza infections if given early in the disease course (such as <a href="http://www.mayoclinic.com/health/influenza/DS00081/DSECTION=treatments-and-drugs">oseltamivir or zanamivir </a>), but I think the odds of those being stocked at a veterinary school would be pretty slim.</p> <p>So, rather than at least try for some kind of medically plausible scenario (is that really too much to ask?), Daryl, Michonne, Tyreese and Bob the medic take off in search of completely ineffective antibiotics,and run into an enormous zombie horde on the way. Hershel, in the interim, leaves the relative safety of the prison (he was ensconced with the children as a "high risk" individual) and wanders out into the woods to pick berries and leaves to brew <a href="http://umm.edu/health/medical/altmed/herb/elderberry">elderberry tea</a>. A folk remedy, there are a <a href="http://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pubmed/21352539">few</a> <a href="http://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pubmed/22972323">peer-reviewed</a> <a href="http://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pubmed/21730370">publications</a> which suggest that elderberries or elder flower might have some properties that do work to treat influenza, so at least here Hershel is, well, sucking somewhat less here when it comes to proposing medical interventions to help those suffering than he did with his terrible antibiotics idea.</p> <p>Hershel does end up with his tea, taking it into the isolation cell block and distributing it to the infected. This includes Dr. Subramanian, who repays the favor by coughing bloody sputum all over Hershel's face. (Seriously, he doesn't even know how to cough into his elbow? Even the little girl talking to Carol did that correctly).</p> <p>From the previews of next week's episode, <a href="http://www.amctv.com/the-walking-dead/videos/sneak-peek-episode-404-the-walking-dead-indifference">"Indifference"</a>, it appears there will be more searches for drugs, while presumably the horde advances toward the prison. I anticipate a miracle cure of some kind for Glenn at the least, but remain annoyed that the writers are touting antibiotics for a viral infection when flu season is upon us.</p> <p>See also:</p> <p><a href="http://scienceblogs.com/aetiology/2013/10/23/the-microbiology-of-zombies-part-i/">Part I: the microbiology of zombies</a></p> <p><a href="http://scienceblogs.com/aetiology/2013/10/31/the-microbiology-of-zombies-part-iii-were-all-infected/">Part III: "We're all infected"</a></p> <p><a href="http://scienceblogs.com/aetiology/?p=2249">Part IV: hidden infections</a></p> </div> <span><a title="View user profile." href="/aetiology" lang="" about="/aetiology" typeof="schema:Person" property="schema:name" datatype="">tsmith</a></span> <span>Mon, 10/28/2013 - 12:21</span> <div class="field field--name-field-blog-tags field--type-entity-reference field--label-inline"> <div class="field--label">Tags</div> <div class="field--items"> <div class="field--item"><a href="/tag/general-epidemiology" hreflang="en">General Epidemiology</a></div> <div class="field--item"><a href="/tag/infectious-disease" hreflang="en">infectious disease</a></div> <div class="field--item"><a href="/tag/influenza" hreflang="en">influenza</a></div> <div class="field--item"><a href="/tag/zombies" hreflang="en">zombies</a></div> <div class="field--item"><a href="/tag/apocalypse" hreflang="en">apocalypse</a></div> <div class="field--item"><a href="/tag/pandemic" hreflang="en">pandemic</a></div> <div class="field--item"><a href="/tag/treatments" hreflang="en">treatments</a></div> <div class="field--item"><a href="/tag/infectious-disease" hreflang="en">infectious disease</a></div> <div class="field--item"><a href="/tag/influenza" hreflang="en">influenza</a></div> <div class="field--item"><a href="/tag/zombies" hreflang="en">zombies</a></div> </div> </div> <div class="field field--name-field-blog-categories field--type-entity-reference field--label-inline"> <div class="field--label">Categories</div> <div class="field--items"> <div class="field--item"><a href="/channel/medicine" hreflang="en">Medicine</a></div> </div> </div> <section> <article data-comment-user-id="0" id="comment-1844082" class="js-comment comment-wrapper clearfix"> <mark class="hidden" data-comment-timestamp="1382989310"></mark> <div class="well"> <strong></strong> <div class="field field--name-comment-body field--type-text-long field--label-hidden field--item"><p>Elderberry and elderflower are antiviral and the former has been shown to inhibit the ability of influenza viruses to enter human cells. Elder leaf is somewhat toxic and was mostly used, historically, as a purgative. If the show actually showed this guy mixing leaf and berry, you know what kind of side effects that's going to have.</p> </div> <drupal-render-placeholder callback="comment.lazy_builders:renderLinks" arguments="0=1844082&amp;1=default&amp;2=en&amp;3=" token="MEGSn7dKZKBSX7hLKACjEb45O5jo2n3mdE4swhE1HJI"></drupal-render-placeholder> </div> <footer> <em>By <span lang="" typeof="schema:Person" property="schema:name" datatype="">jane (not verified)</span> on 28 Oct 2013 <a href="https://scienceblogs.com/taxonomy/term/4838/feed#comment-1844082">#permalink</a></em> <article typeof="schema:Person" about="/user/0"> <div class="field field--name-user-picture field--type-image field--label-hidden field--item"> <a href="/user/0" hreflang="und"><img src="/files/styles/thumbnail/public/default_images/icon-user.png?itok=yQw_eG_q" width="100" height="100" alt="User Image" typeof="foaf:Image" class="img-responsive" /> </a> </div> </article> </footer> </article> <article data-comment-user-id="0" id="comment-1844083" class="js-comment comment-wrapper clearfix"> <mark class="hidden" data-comment-timestamp="1383258994"></mark> <div class="well"> <strong></strong> <div class="field field--name-comment-body field--type-text-long field--label-hidden field--item"><p>I don't know whether elder works as an antivirotic but both flowers and berries are edible and tasty. At least if we're talking the common elder, <i>Sambucus nigra</i>. <i>Sambucus racemosa</i> has red berries that make excellent jam but one has to strain it as the seeds are somewhat rich in saponins and glycosides that make some people sick.</p> </div> <drupal-render-placeholder callback="comment.lazy_builders:renderLinks" arguments="0=1844083&amp;1=default&amp;2=en&amp;3=" token="c7X4wMS-remwtpDaIQ-ZkLH6YY24f-VdRQHB_d88D3M"></drupal-render-placeholder> </div> <footer> <em>By <span lang="" typeof="schema:Person" property="schema:name" datatype="">Kultakutri (not verified)</span> on 31 Oct 2013 <a href="https://scienceblogs.com/taxonomy/term/4838/feed#comment-1844083">#permalink</a></em> <article typeof="schema:Person" about="/user/0"> <div class="field field--name-user-picture field--type-image field--label-hidden field--item"> <a href="/user/0" hreflang="und"><img src="/files/styles/thumbnail/public/default_images/icon-user.png?itok=yQw_eG_q" width="100" height="100" alt="User Image" typeof="foaf:Image" class="img-responsive" /> </a> </div> </article> </footer> </article> <article data-comment-user-id="0" id="comment-1844084" class="js-comment comment-wrapper clearfix"> <mark class="hidden" data-comment-timestamp="1383344430"></mark> <div class="well"> <strong></strong> <div class="field field--name-comment-body field--type-text-long field--label-hidden field--item"><p>Ha! While on vacation with a non-science-inclined friend I caught my first ep of TWD in years and it was this one. My friend was filling me in on the background of this outbreak and I kept saying pretty much exactly what you outlined here, but stressing the antibiotics weren't going to help, especially with such a fast mortality rate. She kept calling me unreasonable. Not because I was expecting reality, but because I should give the ab's a chance. I told her she continued to cement why she would never be on Team Me during a zombie apocalypse.</p> </div> <drupal-render-placeholder callback="comment.lazy_builders:renderLinks" arguments="0=1844084&amp;1=default&amp;2=en&amp;3=" token="7tB0y5YU0_5u9WPis5UViGpnJZo2aIU9Er8k2gDvT5M"></drupal-render-placeholder> </div> <footer> <em>By <span lang="" typeof="schema:Person" property="schema:name" datatype="">TJ (not verified)</span> on 01 Nov 2013 <a href="https://scienceblogs.com/taxonomy/term/4838/feed#comment-1844084">#permalink</a></em> <article typeof="schema:Person" about="/user/0"> <div class="field field--name-user-picture field--type-image field--label-hidden field--item"> <a href="/user/0" hreflang="und"><img src="/files/styles/thumbnail/public/default_images/icon-user.png?itok=yQw_eG_q" width="100" height="100" alt="User Image" typeof="foaf:Image" class="img-responsive" /> </a> </div> </article> </footer> </article> <article data-comment-user-id="0" id="comment-1844085" class="js-comment comment-wrapper clearfix"> <mark class="hidden" data-comment-timestamp="1383353879"></mark> <div class="well"> <strong></strong> <div class="field field--name-comment-body field--type-text-long field--label-hidden field--item"><p>Looking for antibiotics is a subplot in the series , soon they will discover that the antibiotics don't work. Either someone will survive and they can use the blood for a serum or the use of herbs will indicate a path.</p> </div> <drupal-render-placeholder callback="comment.lazy_builders:renderLinks" arguments="0=1844085&amp;1=default&amp;2=en&amp;3=" token="R_vXqj-pZkvRbN9127S3EICiY4f9ttW8ev-oyQkAWdo"></drupal-render-placeholder> </div> <footer> <em>By <span lang="" typeof="schema:Person" property="schema:name" datatype="">Vesta (not verified)</span> on 01 Nov 2013 <a href="https://scienceblogs.com/taxonomy/term/4838/feed#comment-1844085">#permalink</a></em> <article typeof="schema:Person" about="/user/0"> <div class="field field--name-user-picture field--type-image field--label-hidden field--item"> <a href="/user/0" hreflang="und"><img src="/files/styles/thumbnail/public/default_images/icon-user.png?itok=yQw_eG_q" width="100" height="100" alt="User Image" typeof="foaf:Image" class="img-responsive" /> </a> </div> </article> </footer> </article> <article data-comment-user-id="0" id="comment-1844086" class="js-comment comment-wrapper clearfix"> <mark class="hidden" data-comment-timestamp="1383770539"></mark> <div class="well"> <strong></strong> <div class="field field--name-comment-body field--type-text-long field--label-hidden field--item"><p>It's a series about zombies and you expect realism?<br /> With these kinds of stories, disengage your brain first.</p> </div> <drupal-render-placeholder callback="comment.lazy_builders:renderLinks" arguments="0=1844086&amp;1=default&amp;2=en&amp;3=" token="4BvmLDqQuzTSWMo2wtyHGfjc1cQxkQk7SFvMJoREb9Q"></drupal-render-placeholder> </div> <footer> <em>By <span lang="" typeof="schema:Person" property="schema:name" datatype="">Bob (not verified)</span> on 06 Nov 2013 <a href="https://scienceblogs.com/taxonomy/term/4838/feed#comment-1844086">#permalink</a></em> <article typeof="schema:Person" about="/user/0"> <div class="field field--name-user-picture field--type-image field--label-hidden field--item"> <a href="/user/0" hreflang="und"><img src="/files/styles/thumbnail/public/default_images/icon-user.png?itok=yQw_eG_q" width="100" height="100" alt="User Image" typeof="foaf:Image" class="img-responsive" /> </a> </div> </article> </footer> </article> <article data-comment-user-id="0" id="comment-1844087" class="js-comment comment-wrapper clearfix"> <mark class="hidden" data-comment-timestamp="1383861789"></mark> <div class="well"> <strong></strong> <div class="field field--name-comment-body field--type-text-long field--label-hidden field--item"><p>Elderberry LEAVES however, are toxic and high in cyanide! say what you will about the berries (and even that isn't given...) but eating the stems, leaves, or roots of elderberry is an AWFUL idea, AWFUL.</p> </div> <drupal-render-placeholder callback="comment.lazy_builders:renderLinks" arguments="0=1844087&amp;1=default&amp;2=en&amp;3=" token="Azy51ESx3y9mFeY_bEXRZFD4PhxHma4ESyRzgZJRpbU"></drupal-render-placeholder> </div> <footer> <em>By <span lang="" typeof="schema:Person" property="schema:name" datatype="">jemand (not verified)</span> on 07 Nov 2013 <a href="https://scienceblogs.com/taxonomy/term/4838/feed#comment-1844087">#permalink</a></em> <article typeof="schema:Person" about="/user/0"> <div class="field field--name-user-picture field--type-image field--label-hidden field--item"> <a href="/user/0" hreflang="und"><img src="/files/styles/thumbnail/public/default_images/icon-user.png?itok=yQw_eG_q" width="100" height="100" alt="User Image" typeof="foaf:Image" class="img-responsive" /> </a> </div> </article> </footer> </article> <article data-comment-user-id="0" id="comment-1844088" class="js-comment comment-wrapper clearfix"> <mark class="hidden" data-comment-timestamp="1384005394"></mark> <div class="well"> <strong></strong> <div class="field field--name-comment-body field--type-text-long field--label-hidden field--item"><p>#6 "With these kinds of stories, disengage your brain first"</p> <p>Ha! Filthy zombie covering as human. Forget it, Bob, if you want my brain you´ll have to take it from my cold, dead hands first!</p> </div> <drupal-render-placeholder callback="comment.lazy_builders:renderLinks" arguments="0=1844088&amp;1=default&amp;2=en&amp;3=" token="7wevEQVQ6sLhiuqZsMFWT7Z5baXzP4SB8SWY-GuvuYw"></drupal-render-placeholder> </div> <footer> <em>By <span lang="" typeof="schema:Person" property="schema:name" datatype="">Hermenauta (not verified)</span> on 09 Nov 2013 <a href="https://scienceblogs.com/taxonomy/term/4838/feed#comment-1844088">#permalink</a></em> <article typeof="schema:Person" about="/user/0"> <div class="field field--name-user-picture field--type-image field--label-hidden field--item"> <a href="/user/0" hreflang="und"><img src="/files/styles/thumbnail/public/default_images/icon-user.png?itok=yQw_eG_q" width="100" height="100" alt="User Image" typeof="foaf:Image" class="img-responsive" /> </a> </div> </article> </footer> </article> </section> <ul class="links inline list-inline"><li class="comment-forbidden"><a href="/user/login?destination=/aetiology/2013/10/28/the-microbiology-of-zombies-part-ii-ineffective-treatments-and-how-not-to-survive-the-apocalypse%23comment-form">Log in</a> to post comments</li></ul> Mon, 28 Oct 2013 16:21:16 +0000 tsmith 58094 at https://scienceblogs.com Oh, please, tell me half my friends are not accidental cult members https://scienceblogs.com/gregladen/2013/08/11/oh-please-tell-me-half-my-friends-are-not-accidental-cult-members <span>Oh, please, tell me half my friends are not accidental cult members </span> <div class="field field--name-body field--type-text-with-summary field--label-hidden field--item"><p>I do not have an unquestioned respect for Edwared Snowden or those other guys who swore an oath of secrecy in service of their government and then stole piles of secrets and gave them away. I'm also not especially impressed with the uncritical crush so many people have on them for doing what they did. We've discussed this before in relation to State Department cables. While so many others seemed to assume that all State Department cables were evil secrets that must see the light of day, I was thinking of a number of probable State Department cables that I have reason to believe might exist that had no reason to see the light of day but where their publication would be damaging. I gave specific, meaningful examples, and these criticisms never addressed directly by anyone. All I got were stern looks, or worse, because I was not in the Cult of Wikileaks.</p> <p>The following is a bit more nuanced for many people to get, so if you are already really mad at me for what I just said just stop reading and leave the room. OK, thanks, bye.</p> <p>I do not like Big Brother and I object to many of the activities that the government probably engages in. If some of those activities are revealed because of Bradley Manning or Edward Snowden's actions, and something positive is done about that, then I'll be very glad. I'll be very glad for Wikileaks, Bradley Manning, and Edward Snowden. </p> <p>Yes, I can hold those two seemingly different thoughts and feelings at the same time. </p> <p>Having said both of those things, I'm feeling good that I never jumped on the bandwagon, treating Edward Snowden like he was some sexy speaker at a skeptical convention I just met in a bar who has slipped me a Mickey. If, that is, and I'm having a hard time believing that this is the case but it may well be, the following report from Voice of Russia is true:</p> <blockquote><p><strong>Edward Snowden predicts catastrophic and 'inevitable solar tsunami'</strong></p> <p>Edward Snowden, a former CIA agent, has predicted that series of solar flares is set to occur in September of 2013, killing hundreds of millions of people.</p> <p>The documents collected by Snowden offer proof that the Central Intelligence Agency (CIA) learned about the existing threat 14 years ago.</p> <p>Ever since the world’s governments have been working secretly ..., to be well prepared for what could be termed as “Solar Apocalypse”.</p> <p>...Snowden said that the government has been working hard to be well prepared for September’s catastrophic solar flares, which can be fraught with fatal consequences, as scientists said – they can lead to the death of mankind.</p> <p>The Central Intelligence Agency learned about the existing threat as long ago as 1999, but according to the government’s decision, this information was immediately made secret.</p> <p>The documents collected by the Federal Emergency Management Agency (FEMA) said how terrible the solar flares’ results will be: two months will be needed for mankind to become non-existent.</p> <p>...</p> <p>Snowden said FEMA and the National Disaster Reduction Center of China have been taking steps for 14 years in light of the findings of Project Stargate.</p> <p>FEMA’s own documents, provided by Snowden, lay out how the organization plans to round up tens of millions of the poorest Americans for housing at secure locations “to better facilitate feeding and provision of consumer goods.”</p> <p>“...‘the killshot’ will shutter most of the world’s electrical systems,” said Snowden.</p> <p>...</p> <blockquote><p>WAIT WAIT IT'S A FAKE ... I interrupt this blog post to report that two guys on the internet have proven that this story is a FAKE. Here is what they say, <a href="http://news.msn.com/rumors/rumor-edward-snowden-says-killshot-cataclysm-coming">quoted at MSN</a>: </p> <blockquote><p>"The Internet is ablaze with yet another baseless conspiracy theory that only serves to distract from real cover-ups and issues of genuine significance — the hoax that NSA whistleblower Edward Snowden recently warned of a 'solar flare killshot' set to wipe out hundreds of millions of people in September," Paul Joseph Watson of Infowars and PrisonPlanet.com complains in an article outlining why it's a hoax.</p> <p>He pointed out, for example, that readers readily would figure out it was fictitious if they went to Internet Chronicle's "about" section, which states the web site "is not of this earth. </p></blockquote> <p>Of course, I got the story from the Voice of Russia web site, not some fake web site. That, itself, is an interesting story.</p> <p>This being a fake or not is really hardly the point. A gazillion people will believe it anyway, so we might as well carry on....</p> </blockquote> <p>Humanity is about to pay a most dire price for its technological dependence.</p> <p>That price, said Snowden, proved a leading factor in his decision to come forward to the press – about both the global Holocaust to ensue, as well as NSA analysts’ power, on the slightest whim, to listen to the phone calls of any person on earth. Mankind has the right to know what it will expect in the future, no matter how dreadful it will be.</p></blockquote> <p>I wonder what he thinks about contrails? </p> <p><a href="http://voiceofrussia.com/news/2013_08_11/Edward-Snowden-predicts-catastrophic-and-inevitable-solar-tsunami-8199/">There's a video that goes along with </a>this on the Voice of Russia web page. And no, it is not the Onion.</p> <p>If Edward Snowden really was thinking this was true, and if he really did act in a way that could get him executed to save humanity from .... well, from not knowing why it is destroyed, in September, by a solar apocalypse ... then he is an unhinged conspiracy theorist and we should probably not trust much else of what he said.</p> <p>Or, perhaps, the Russian Intelligence Agency ... you know, the one with the name nobody can remember but it used to be the KGB ... has simply made this story up to make Snowden look like a crazy person. If so, then it is possible that they did this as part of a deal with the CIA-NSA in order to discredit Snowden. If that is the case, then there must be something else that is part of the deal, some Russian Agents that are going to be released in exchange for this help. Or, perhaps, the CIA intents to help the Russians in a False Flag Operation to discredit Mikhail Khodorkovsky. Something involving pipelines and vodka and a secret base underneath a fake island in the Aleutians. Yeah, that's what it is. It's a False Flag Operation. It must be.</p> <p>Or, maybe there really is going to be ....</p> <p><em>... a Kill Shot....</em></p> <object width="640" height="360"><param name="movie" value="//www.youtube.com/v/_0-_LfGpKOo?hl=en_US&amp;version=3" /><param name="allowFullScreen" value="true" /><param name="allowscriptaccess" value="always" /><embed src="//www.youtube.com/v/_0-_LfGpKOo?hl=en_US&amp;version=3" type="application/x-shockwave-flash" width="640" height="360" allowscriptaccess="always" allowfullscreen="true"></embed></object><p> For now, I'm going with this story being fake. </p> </div> <span><a title="View user profile." href="/author/gregladen" lang="" about="/author/gregladen" typeof="schema:Person" property="schema:name" datatype="">gregladen</a></span> <span>Sun, 08/11/2013 - 11:39</span> <div class="field field--name-field-blog-tags field--type-entity-reference field--label-inline"> <div class="field--label">Tags</div> <div class="field--items"> <div class="field--item"><a href="/tag/uncategorized" hreflang="en">Uncategorized</a></div> <div class="field--item"><a href="/tag/apocalypse" hreflang="en">apocalypse</a></div> <div class="field--item"><a href="/tag/cia" hreflang="en">cia</a></div> <div class="field--item"><a href="/tag/contrails" hreflang="en">contrails</a></div> <div class="field--item"><a href="/tag/edward-snowden" hreflang="en">Edward Snowden</a></div> <div class="field--item"><a href="/tag/tin-foil-hats" hreflang="en">tin foil hats</a></div> </div> </div> <section> <article data-comment-user-id="0" id="comment-1453625" class="js-comment comment-wrapper clearfix"> <mark class="hidden" data-comment-timestamp="1376239708"></mark> <div class="well"> <strong></strong> <div class="field field--name-comment-body field--type-text-long field--label-hidden field--item"><p>Snowden is not the story. The abrogation of the fourth amendement is the story. Of course the solar flare crapola is disinformation.</p> <p> --bks</p> </div> <drupal-render-placeholder callback="comment.lazy_builders:renderLinks" arguments="0=1453625&amp;1=default&amp;2=en&amp;3=" token="vxtEt1sXzxsIRpgdJbLGXO4dTAOZh-XuygN7JUfd3TU"></drupal-render-placeholder> </div> <footer> <em>By <span lang="" typeof="schema:Person" property="schema:name" datatype="">bks (not verified)</span> on 11 Aug 2013 <a href="https://scienceblogs.com/taxonomy/term/4838/feed#comment-1453625">#permalink</a></em> <article typeof="schema:Person" about="/user/0"> <div class="field field--name-user-picture field--type-image field--label-hidden field--item"> <a href="/user/0" hreflang="und"><img src="/files/styles/thumbnail/public/default_images/icon-user.png?itok=yQw_eG_q" width="100" height="100" alt="User Image" typeof="foaf:Image" class="img-responsive" /> </a> </div> </article> </footer> </article> <article data-comment-user-id="31" id="comment-1453626" class="js-comment comment-wrapper clearfix"> <mark class="hidden" data-comment-timestamp="1376241108"></mark> <div class="well"> <strong></strong> <div class="field field--name-comment-body field--type-text-long field--label-hidden field--item"><p>Agreed. To the extent that whatever you said or imply is true, of course.</p> </div> <drupal-render-placeholder callback="comment.lazy_builders:renderLinks" arguments="0=1453626&amp;1=default&amp;2=en&amp;3=" token="D_wb-xJSreG2Clo2GzBBTIOy5PazJ3Edy-7trQQ2b80"></drupal-render-placeholder> </div> <footer> <em>By <a title="View user profile." href="/author/gregladen" lang="" about="/author/gregladen" typeof="schema:Person" property="schema:name" datatype="">gregladen</a> on 11 Aug 2013 <a href="https://scienceblogs.com/taxonomy/term/4838/feed#comment-1453626">#permalink</a></em> <article typeof="schema:Person" about="/author/gregladen"> <div class="field field--name-user-picture field--type-image field--label-hidden field--item"> <a href="/author/gregladen" hreflang="en"><img src="/files/styles/thumbnail/public/pictures/HumanEvolutionIcon350-120x120.jpg?itok=Tg7drSR8" width="100" height="100" alt="Profile picture for user gregladen" typeof="foaf:Image" class="img-responsive" /> </a> </div> </article> </footer> </article> <article data-comment-user-id="0" id="comment-1453627" class="js-comment comment-wrapper clearfix"> <mark class="hidden" data-comment-timestamp="1376241244"></mark> <div class="well"> <strong></strong> <div class="field field--name-comment-body field--type-text-long field--label-hidden field--item"><p>OK Solar Flare!!! WOW! like that never happened before!<br /> The internet goes down! Ya? So? I don't NEED the infernal-net, it is just handy.<br /> So electricity goes down? Got generator, fireplace, grill, oil lamps, Can do OK for a few weeks.<br /> It's amazing how NOTHING gone done in the 1800's and everyone suffered for the lack of electricity.<br /> But is this real? The Bad Astronomer has not mentioned anything so not worried.<br /> About Snowden and the others? I'm not a fan because I do not know the details but I understand. Yes they took oaths, well so did I but the implied part of the oath is that it concerned LEGAL - Constitutional activities. I did not take the oath to coverup the illegal activities of power crazed a-holes. I do not believe in secrets just cuz, ie don't say anything about 'him' being a crook because it might cause a panic or hurt our image- BS - want me to honor your image and efforts? BE HONEST!!</p> </div> <drupal-render-placeholder callback="comment.lazy_builders:renderLinks" arguments="0=1453627&amp;1=default&amp;2=en&amp;3=" token="fuE5dYmuI2H7sCTfpULBDD67BQ7ylPK1dVmW4t103II"></drupal-render-placeholder> </div> <footer> <em>By <span lang="" typeof="schema:Person" property="schema:name" datatype="">L.Long (not verified)</span> on 11 Aug 2013 <a href="https://scienceblogs.com/taxonomy/term/4838/feed#comment-1453627">#permalink</a></em> <article typeof="schema:Person" about="/user/0"> <div class="field field--name-user-picture field--type-image field--label-hidden field--item"> <a href="/user/0" hreflang="und"><img src="/files/styles/thumbnail/public/default_images/icon-user.png?itok=yQw_eG_q" width="100" height="100" alt="User Image" typeof="foaf:Image" class="img-responsive" /> </a> </div> </article> </footer> </article> <article data-comment-user-id="0" id="comment-1453628" class="js-comment comment-wrapper clearfix"> <mark class="hidden" data-comment-timestamp="1376245950"></mark> <div class="well"> <strong></strong> <div class="field field--name-comment-body field--type-text-long field--label-hidden field--item"><p>"This must be disinformation" should be your first thought reading this (solar flares), the last (con trails), and the next (TBA) report of conspiracy theory clap-trap attributed to Edward Snowden.</p> <p>The US national security apparatus will have two goals here. One, make this "all about Ed", which requires little effort thanks to the vapid and self-serving corporate media, and two, destroy any trust people have in what Snowden has to say, it's not like they will actually read the documents. Getting people to put "the NSA has all your emails" in the same mental compartment as "the CIA wants to kill you with solar flares" goes a long way towards that second goal.</p> <p>Now, I have no special knowledge to indicate these two "Ed is a nut" stories were planted or even just promoted with that intention, but only a fool would think it is a ludicrous possibility. IMO.</p> </div> <drupal-render-placeholder callback="comment.lazy_builders:renderLinks" arguments="0=1453628&amp;1=default&amp;2=en&amp;3=" token="0610HYZTTCmWZPsJaud0aiVjdgX46NFFq3xoMPrFSpw"></drupal-render-placeholder> </div> <footer> <em>By <span lang="" typeof="schema:Person" property="schema:name" datatype="">coby (not verified)</span> on 11 Aug 2013 <a href="https://scienceblogs.com/taxonomy/term/4838/feed#comment-1453628">#permalink</a></em> <article typeof="schema:Person" about="/user/0"> <div class="field field--name-user-picture field--type-image field--label-hidden field--item"> <a href="/user/0" hreflang="und"><img src="/files/styles/thumbnail/public/default_images/icon-user.png?itok=yQw_eG_q" width="100" height="100" alt="User Image" typeof="foaf:Image" class="img-responsive" /> </a> </div> </article> </footer> </article> <article data-comment-user-id="0" id="comment-1453629" class="js-comment comment-wrapper clearfix"> <mark class="hidden" data-comment-timestamp="1376246766"></mark> <div class="well"> <strong></strong> <div class="field field--name-comment-body field--type-text-long field--label-hidden field--item"><p>So, wait.</p> <p>The real reason Snowden violated the terms of his security clearance and oath was because of the central end-of-the-world plot theme of <a href="http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Knowing_(film)">"Knowing"?</a></p> <p>Sad.</p> </div> <drupal-render-placeholder callback="comment.lazy_builders:renderLinks" arguments="0=1453629&amp;1=default&amp;2=en&amp;3=" token="yUJUd29yyeumkX3lMj_9QR74DdDaOzmfLb2Hrl-QFCw"></drupal-render-placeholder> </div> <footer> <em>By <span lang="" typeof="schema:Person" property="schema:name" datatype="">makeinu (not verified)</span> on 11 Aug 2013 <a href="https://scienceblogs.com/taxonomy/term/4838/feed#comment-1453629">#permalink</a></em> <article typeof="schema:Person" about="/user/0"> <div class="field field--name-user-picture field--type-image field--label-hidden field--item"> <a href="/user/0" hreflang="und"><img src="/files/styles/thumbnail/public/default_images/icon-user.png?itok=yQw_eG_q" width="100" height="100" alt="User Image" typeof="foaf:Image" class="img-responsive" /> </a> </div> </article> </footer> </article> <article data-comment-user-id="0" id="comment-1453630" class="js-comment comment-wrapper clearfix"> <mark class="hidden" data-comment-timestamp="1376249936"></mark> <div class="well"> <strong></strong> <div class="field field--name-comment-body field--type-text-long field--label-hidden field--item"><p>Right on!, and if I may indulge in religious language here, Amen to that! I am so (expletive!) sick of the Uncritical Cult of Wikileaks and its various spawn, that I could just throw up. Particularly since so many of the cultists also use GMail, Google Voice, smartphones, and Facebook, each of which is a surveillance system with a degree of depth that NSA could only hope to achieve. The overt hypocrisy is nauseating.</p> <p>One of the reforms that is badly needed, is a law that provides an absolute right for persons with clearances to make disclosures to appropriately cleared members of relevant committees in the House and Senate, with zero consequences to themselves. There may already be whistleblower laws but apparently they are not adequate to the task and need to be strengthened.</p> <p>Representatives and Senators already have the ability to make public disclosures without consequence to themselves. Let us not forget a particularly egregious example of this, when Senator Orrin Hatch said, in the mid 1990s, "why are we paying good money to eavesdrop on the satellite phone of a guy named Bin Laden who lives in a cave?" Needless to say, Bin Laden quickly ditched his satphone, and the rest is history. But the point this illustrates, is that a Representative or Senator, having met with some future Snowden-equivalent, could choose to make public disclosures (more cautiously than Hatch did!) that were sufficient to get the ball rolling on reforms. All of this without celebrity status for leakers, without indiscriminate data-dumps that really do cause harm, and without the media-frenzy digressions that interfere with the real issues at hand. </p> <p>As for solar flairs (and chemtrails;-), it's clear that the Russian "news" item is sheer horse manure: they didn't even get the name of the agency correct. This would be obvious to Americans but not necessarily obvious to Russians, which supports the conclusion that it's for domestic consumption. But let's not forget that Russia is the heartland of conspiracy theory: after decades of dictatorship (a habit that apparently dies hard), there is a strong tendency in the culture to believe any outlandish crazy thing that's branded as a disclosure about secret government goings-on.</p> <p>I'm inclined to believe (Ockham) that the Russian article was purely the result of some editor's desire for sensationalism combined with an absence of even basic fact-checking. But in the absence of certainty about its intent, we can observe its impact. I'm inclined to believe that the impact will also be minimal. September will come and go without apocalypse, and the media will find some new source of cheap thrills.</p> </div> <drupal-render-placeholder callback="comment.lazy_builders:renderLinks" arguments="0=1453630&amp;1=default&amp;2=en&amp;3=" token="Q_r7V2U9WvftoAK85fH9E2yi_3C-4cFSdwysW9A0OJE"></drupal-render-placeholder> </div> <footer> <em>By <span lang="" typeof="schema:Person" property="schema:name" datatype="">G (not verified)</span> on 11 Aug 2013 <a href="https://scienceblogs.com/taxonomy/term/4838/feed#comment-1453630">#permalink</a></em> <article typeof="schema:Person" about="/user/0"> <div class="field field--name-user-picture field--type-image field--label-hidden field--item"> <a href="/user/0" hreflang="und"><img src="/files/styles/thumbnail/public/default_images/icon-user.png?itok=yQw_eG_q" width="100" height="100" alt="User Image" typeof="foaf:Image" class="img-responsive" /> </a> </div> </article> </footer> </article> <article data-comment-user-id="0" id="comment-1453631" class="js-comment comment-wrapper clearfix"> <mark class="hidden" data-comment-timestamp="1376251368"></mark> <div class="well"> <strong></strong> <div class="field field--name-comment-body field--type-text-long field--label-hidden field--item"><p>If there's any PRISM inmates out there who are forcing themselves to read most of the internet tripe and trying to pass it off as "intelligence"... I just want to say, "Hi; hope you're not too bored and the pay is good" ;-)</p> </div> <drupal-render-placeholder callback="comment.lazy_builders:renderLinks" arguments="0=1453631&amp;1=default&amp;2=en&amp;3=" token="hqnrQ2yO2Evn8nw0asQwyN6tD1VjftyJ3IPGsg5mLA0"></drupal-render-placeholder> </div> <footer> <em>By <span lang="" typeof="schema:Person" property="schema:name" datatype="">KnightBiologist (not verified)</span> on 11 Aug 2013 <a href="https://scienceblogs.com/taxonomy/term/4838/feed#comment-1453631">#permalink</a></em> <article typeof="schema:Person" about="/user/0"> <div class="field field--name-user-picture field--type-image field--label-hidden field--item"> <a href="/user/0" hreflang="und"><img src="/files/styles/thumbnail/public/default_images/icon-user.png?itok=yQw_eG_q" width="100" height="100" alt="User Image" typeof="foaf:Image" class="img-responsive" /> </a> </div> </article> </footer> </article> <article data-comment-user-id="0" id="comment-1453632" class="js-comment comment-wrapper clearfix"> <mark class="hidden" data-comment-timestamp="1376258603"></mark> <div class="well"> <strong></strong> <div class="field field--name-comment-body field--type-text-long field--label-hidden field--item"><p>While I don't count myself as blindly uncritical of WikiLeaks and I agree with Greg that not all diplomatic secrets need to be, nor should be, exposed, I think it is pretty laughable to criticize Snowden for "violating the terms of his security clearance".</p> <p>And only in America could the exposure of a massive government surveillance state be met with tongue clucks about how he should have just told the government...</p> </div> <drupal-render-placeholder callback="comment.lazy_builders:renderLinks" arguments="0=1453632&amp;1=default&amp;2=en&amp;3=" token="9YqYbsLocEGRDidKC17gC0YtH-6yxvpfi8BlbkHDCUU"></drupal-render-placeholder> </div> <footer> <em>By <span lang="" typeof="schema:Person" property="schema:name" datatype="">coby (not verified)</span> on 11 Aug 2013 <a href="https://scienceblogs.com/taxonomy/term/4838/feed#comment-1453632">#permalink</a></em> <article typeof="schema:Person" about="/user/0"> <div class="field field--name-user-picture field--type-image field--label-hidden field--item"> <a href="/user/0" hreflang="und"><img src="/files/styles/thumbnail/public/default_images/icon-user.png?itok=yQw_eG_q" width="100" height="100" alt="User Image" typeof="foaf:Image" class="img-responsive" /> </a> </div> </article> </footer> </article> <article data-comment-user-id="0" id="comment-1453633" class="js-comment comment-wrapper clearfix"> <mark class="hidden" data-comment-timestamp="1376269077"></mark> <div class="well"> <strong></strong> <div class="field field--name-comment-body field--type-text-long field--label-hidden field--item"><p>The story is most likely made up by the Russian media, perhaps from a basis that CIA has a real (and justified) concern what will happen if we get hit by a major flare, but there is also a possibility that there are people in CIA who really believe that stuff. Remember "The men who stare at goats". Strange things can happen in secret organizations where there are no outsiders who can tell them "That's just crazy!".</p> </div> <drupal-render-placeholder callback="comment.lazy_builders:renderLinks" arguments="0=1453633&amp;1=default&amp;2=en&amp;3=" token="BPXmHu8xpweyd7FJo4mRef7yg0ZzfQklb96q9fYXvVc"></drupal-render-placeholder> </div> <footer> <em>By <span lang="" typeof="schema:Person" property="schema:name" datatype="">Thomas P (not verified)</span> on 11 Aug 2013 <a href="https://scienceblogs.com/taxonomy/term/4838/feed#comment-1453633">#permalink</a></em> <article typeof="schema:Person" about="/user/0"> <div class="field field--name-user-picture field--type-image field--label-hidden field--item"> <a href="/user/0" hreflang="und"><img src="/files/styles/thumbnail/public/default_images/icon-user.png?itok=yQw_eG_q" width="100" height="100" alt="User Image" typeof="foaf:Image" class="img-responsive" /> </a> </div> </article> </footer> </article> <article data-comment-user-id="0" id="comment-1453634" class="js-comment comment-wrapper clearfix"> <mark class="hidden" data-comment-timestamp="1376282663"></mark> <div class="well"> <strong></strong> <div class="field field--name-comment-body field--type-text-long field--label-hidden field--item"><p>@ #8<br /> "I think it is pretty laughable to criticize Snowden for “violating the terms of his security clearance”. Why? Are you a member of the cult? Or one of those who think 9/11 was an inside job by a zionist conspiracy in the govmint? Some things may be over classified but there are things that could damage the security of the US if disclosed. That is why the "terms of his security clearance" is not a laughing matter. The Brits during WWII made stuff up and attributed it to real living, but unknowing, British citizens in order to mislead the Germans. Mr.Snowden, if there, might have determined that doing such things was wrong and the world should know what was going on. If so he would have sunk the D-day invasion.</p> </div> <drupal-render-placeholder callback="comment.lazy_builders:renderLinks" arguments="0=1453634&amp;1=default&amp;2=en&amp;3=" token="xmzF572LnbB5Sz0CssHDswVHrjUhrIBrM8lgTAPD6fI"></drupal-render-placeholder> </div> <footer> <em>By <span lang="" typeof="schema:Person" property="schema:name" datatype="">bobh (not verified)</span> on 12 Aug 2013 <a href="https://scienceblogs.com/taxonomy/term/4838/feed#comment-1453634">#permalink</a></em> <article typeof="schema:Person" about="/user/0"> <div class="field field--name-user-picture field--type-image field--label-hidden field--item"> <a href="/user/0" hreflang="und"><img src="/files/styles/thumbnail/public/default_images/icon-user.png?itok=yQw_eG_q" width="100" height="100" alt="User Image" typeof="foaf:Image" class="img-responsive" /> </a> </div> </article> </footer> </article> <article data-comment-user-id="0" id="comment-1453635" class="js-comment comment-wrapper clearfix"> <mark class="hidden" data-comment-timestamp="1376283403"></mark> <div class="well"> <strong></strong> <div class="field field--name-comment-body field--type-text-long field--label-hidden field--item"><p><em>Are you a member of the cult?</em><br /> um...okay..?</p> <p><em>Or one of those who think 9/11 was an inside job by a zionist conspiracy in the govmint?</em></p> <p>Yeah, that's what I meant! Don't know how it came out as what I wrote....thanks for clarifying!</p> </div> <drupal-render-placeholder callback="comment.lazy_builders:renderLinks" arguments="0=1453635&amp;1=default&amp;2=en&amp;3=" token="NFPfG352tZu6gbBowi4eZ1qL5mMhbZrxjaGvywbvk34"></drupal-render-placeholder> </div> <footer> <em>By <span lang="" typeof="schema:Person" property="schema:name" datatype="">coby (not verified)</span> on 12 Aug 2013 <a href="https://scienceblogs.com/taxonomy/term/4838/feed#comment-1453635">#permalink</a></em> <article typeof="schema:Person" about="/user/0"> <div class="field field--name-user-picture field--type-image field--label-hidden field--item"> <a href="/user/0" hreflang="und"><img src="/files/styles/thumbnail/public/default_images/icon-user.png?itok=yQw_eG_q" width="100" height="100" alt="User Image" typeof="foaf:Image" class="img-responsive" /> </a> </div> </article> </footer> </article> <article data-comment-user-id="0" id="comment-1453636" class="js-comment comment-wrapper clearfix"> <mark class="hidden" data-comment-timestamp="1376290665"></mark> <div class="well"> <strong></strong> <div class="field field--name-comment-body field--type-text-long field--label-hidden field--item"><p>The issue of destructive solar flares is something I know a bit about. There are multiple issues at work here.</p> <p>The idea that a solar flare comparable to the Carrington event of 1859 could seriously cripple the electric grid is something that people in the business are taking seriously. Governments are or should be making contingency plans for such an event, though not necessarily along the lines of what is being attributed to Snowden here. Contra L. Long above, this is a serious issue, because unlike in the 1800s, we have come to depend on electricity for everyday life, and most of our backup plans involve at least some nearby areas having electricity even as some areas are still off line. That includes generators, BTW: you probably have at most a few days of fuel on hand, and without electricity you can't pump replacement fuel.</p> <p>The tell is the claim that people know, and have known for years, that the event is coming in September. Our solar flare models are not that good. We can watch sunspot groups, and predict which ones are capable of producing large flares. (Though not as large as Carrington's; we have not seen a comparable event since then.) I don't think we can predict exactly when the flare will go off. When it does, we on Earth will have between one and three days of warning if it's coming our way (not all flares produce effects on Earth).</p> <p>Bottom line, as Greg says in the OP, is that either Snowden is a conspiracy nut, or somebody planted this story to discredit Snowden.</p> <p>One thing that puzzles me about this case is why no heads (other than Snowden's) have been rolling at Booz Allen Hamilton, the contractor which employed him. Whatever your opinions of Snowden, it is clear that whoever hired the guy screwed up--the hiring process is supposed to weed out the sort of person who would do what Snowden did. And making the boss look bad is normally an unforgivable sin in the business world.</p> </div> <drupal-render-placeholder callback="comment.lazy_builders:renderLinks" arguments="0=1453636&amp;1=default&amp;2=en&amp;3=" token="N1v632OY6gMZ249y7WMlpdML6idz_U0i5O8AK6hMams"></drupal-render-placeholder> </div> <footer> <em>By <span lang="" typeof="schema:Person" property="schema:name" datatype="">Eric Lund (not verified)</span> on 12 Aug 2013 <a href="https://scienceblogs.com/taxonomy/term/4838/feed#comment-1453636">#permalink</a></em> <article typeof="schema:Person" about="/user/0"> <div class="field field--name-user-picture field--type-image field--label-hidden field--item"> <a href="/user/0" hreflang="und"><img src="/files/styles/thumbnail/public/default_images/icon-user.png?itok=yQw_eG_q" width="100" height="100" alt="User Image" typeof="foaf:Image" class="img-responsive" /> </a> </div> </article> </footer> </article> <article data-comment-user-id="31" id="comment-1453637" class="js-comment comment-wrapper clearfix"> <mark class="hidden" data-comment-timestamp="1376297974"></mark> <div class="well"> <strong></strong> <div class="field field--name-comment-body field--type-text-long field--label-hidden field--item"><p>"The tell is the claim that people know, and have known for years, that the event is coming in September."</p> <p>Exactly. This is one of those really interesting issues .... the frequency of very severe events is low enough that people can mix up likelihood and consequences. </p> <p>Also, just to add some interest to the story: My understanding (correct me if I'm wrong, Eric) is that a solar flare has multiple components, with the photons reaching us first and more or less harmlessly. The solar storm that causes disruption is a physical, matter-involved phenomenon of a plasma cloud projected at high speed from the sun, but no where near the speed of light. The plasma cloud interacts with the earth days after the photons, which is why we can see it coming.</p> <p>The part that causes trouble is the magnetic energy in the plasma cloud, and you can't measure the magnetic energy in advance of its arrival (apparently) so we don't know until the cloud hits how bad it will be. There was a baddish solar flair some time last year or early this year, IIRC that blasted us with a big bad cloud but the cloud ended up being low in magnetic energy. </p> <p>Is that more or less right? I've been hoping to ask Neil de Grasse Tyson about this next time I interview him, because it is in his area of speciality. But you can have a shot at it now if you like! </p> <p>Interesting point about Booz Allen.</p> </div> <drupal-render-placeholder callback="comment.lazy_builders:renderLinks" arguments="0=1453637&amp;1=default&amp;2=en&amp;3=" token="MKyTAZLnOdrYDjanzVzV8IkwE1E_MkLUgL7ZVP1GfC0"></drupal-render-placeholder> </div> <footer> <em>By <a title="View user profile." href="/author/gregladen" lang="" about="/author/gregladen" typeof="schema:Person" property="schema:name" datatype="">gregladen</a> on 12 Aug 2013 <a href="https://scienceblogs.com/taxonomy/term/4838/feed#comment-1453637">#permalink</a></em> <article typeof="schema:Person" about="/author/gregladen"> <div class="field field--name-user-picture field--type-image field--label-hidden field--item"> <a href="/author/gregladen" hreflang="en"><img src="/files/styles/thumbnail/public/pictures/HumanEvolutionIcon350-120x120.jpg?itok=Tg7drSR8" width="100" height="100" alt="Profile picture for user gregladen" typeof="foaf:Image" class="img-responsive" /> </a> </div> </article> </footer> </article> <article data-comment-user-id="0" id="comment-1453638" class="js-comment comment-wrapper clearfix"> <mark class="hidden" data-comment-timestamp="1376308479"></mark> <div class="well"> <strong></strong> <div class="field field--name-comment-body field--type-text-long field--label-hidden field--item"><p>@makeinu also these sci fi stories</p> <p><a href="http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Inconstant_Moon">http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Inconstant_Moon</a></p> <p><a href="http://www.imdb.com/title/tt0660824/">http://www.imdb.com/title/tt0660824/</a></p> </div> <drupal-render-placeholder callback="comment.lazy_builders:renderLinks" arguments="0=1453638&amp;1=default&amp;2=en&amp;3=" token="LoATZbnaE7qLRplWf4-2DU-58jwRLnBDPMom1pi0Xnc"></drupal-render-placeholder> </div> <footer> <em>By <span lang="" typeof="schema:Person" property="schema:name" datatype="">robb (not verified)</span> on 12 Aug 2013 <a href="https://scienceblogs.com/taxonomy/term/4838/feed#comment-1453638">#permalink</a></em> <article typeof="schema:Person" about="/user/0"> <div class="field field--name-user-picture field--type-image field--label-hidden field--item"> <a href="/user/0" hreflang="und"><img src="/files/styles/thumbnail/public/default_images/icon-user.png?itok=yQw_eG_q" width="100" height="100" alt="User Image" typeof="foaf:Image" class="img-responsive" /> </a> </div> </article> </footer> </article> <article data-comment-user-id="0" id="comment-1453639" class="js-comment comment-wrapper clearfix"> <mark class="hidden" data-comment-timestamp="1376315478"></mark> <div class="well"> <strong></strong> <div class="field field--name-comment-body field--type-text-long field--label-hidden field--item"><p>Greg @13: You have the basics right. The orientation of the magnetic field in the cloud also matters: if it is opposite to the direction of the Earth's magnetic field near the front of the magnetosphere, the energy transfer is more efficient than if it were oblique or in the same direction. This is due to what is called reconnection: if two sets of oppositely directed magnetic field lines are in close proximity, they can change their topology such that they become interconnected with each other, and plasma can move from one side to the other (charged particles can easily move along magnetic field lines but only with difficulty be transported across magnetic field lines). But apart from that, yes, the strength of the magnetic field in the cloud matters more than the density of the cloud. And it is the cloud that would do most of the damage, in terms of electromagnetic effects. An astronaut unlucky enough to be outside when the flare went off could get fried by energetic particles moving just under the speed of light, but not enough of those particles would get through our magnetic field and atmosphere to do much damage to most people on the ground. (It is a problem in polar regions due to the geometry of the magnetic field, so certain long-haul flights will take less efficient routes further from the pole if a particularly nasty sunspot group happens to be aimed right at us.)</p> </div> <drupal-render-placeholder callback="comment.lazy_builders:renderLinks" arguments="0=1453639&amp;1=default&amp;2=en&amp;3=" token="ZNz8a9OEUJPPCb8UAdwqm6-MNqTF6AVsAcyC07lI2hM"></drupal-render-placeholder> </div> <footer> <em>By <span lang="" typeof="schema:Person" property="schema:name" datatype="">Eric Lund (not verified)</span> on 12 Aug 2013 <a href="https://scienceblogs.com/taxonomy/term/4838/feed#comment-1453639">#permalink</a></em> <article typeof="schema:Person" about="/user/0"> <div class="field field--name-user-picture field--type-image field--label-hidden field--item"> <a href="/user/0" hreflang="und"><img src="/files/styles/thumbnail/public/default_images/icon-user.png?itok=yQw_eG_q" width="100" height="100" alt="User Image" typeof="foaf:Image" class="img-responsive" /> </a> </div> </article> </footer> </article> <article data-comment-user-id="0" id="comment-1453640" class="js-comment comment-wrapper clearfix"> <mark class="hidden" data-comment-timestamp="1376322423"></mark> <div class="well"> <strong></strong> <div class="field field--name-comment-body field--type-text-long field--label-hidden field--item"><p>If you had warning, you could disconnect things. It is my understanding that big things like transformers would only be damaged if they are connected to long power lines. If you disconnected a transformer and shorted the leads together, it would just sit there through a Carrington-type event. </p> <p>The problem would likely be due to lawyers going crazy over the certain losses from turning off the power grid from the projected damages from not turning the grid off if a Carrington-type event was going to hit us.</p> </div> <drupal-render-placeholder callback="comment.lazy_builders:renderLinks" arguments="0=1453640&amp;1=default&amp;2=en&amp;3=" token="wAdhmLIHUbGlz1DjgIT482-cJ5tttgH1Q4yzeCq98lw"></drupal-render-placeholder> </div> <footer> <em>By <span lang="" typeof="schema:Person" property="schema:name" datatype="">daedalus2u (not verified)</span> on 12 Aug 2013 <a href="https://scienceblogs.com/taxonomy/term/4838/feed#comment-1453640">#permalink</a></em> <article typeof="schema:Person" about="/user/0"> <div class="field field--name-user-picture field--type-image field--label-hidden field--item"> <a href="/user/0" hreflang="und"><img src="/files/styles/thumbnail/public/default_images/icon-user.png?itok=yQw_eG_q" width="100" height="100" alt="User Image" typeof="foaf:Image" class="img-responsive" /> </a> </div> </article> </footer> </article> <article data-comment-user-id="31" id="comment-1453641" class="js-comment comment-wrapper clearfix"> <mark class="hidden" data-comment-timestamp="1376322547"></mark> <div class="well"> <strong></strong> <div class="field field--name-comment-body field--type-text-long field--label-hidden field--item"><p>I wonder how fast we could disconnect everything.</p> </div> <drupal-render-placeholder callback="comment.lazy_builders:renderLinks" arguments="0=1453641&amp;1=default&amp;2=en&amp;3=" token="J3sbxTdwz2p9dcLRMfgz7KLmnCP9EYdkT5W1RJ4bWNY"></drupal-render-placeholder> </div> <footer> <em>By <a title="View user profile." href="/author/gregladen" lang="" about="/author/gregladen" typeof="schema:Person" property="schema:name" datatype="">gregladen</a> on 12 Aug 2013 <a href="https://scienceblogs.com/taxonomy/term/4838/feed#comment-1453641">#permalink</a></em> <article typeof="schema:Person" about="/author/gregladen"> <div class="field field--name-user-picture field--type-image field--label-hidden field--item"> <a href="/author/gregladen" hreflang="en"><img src="/files/styles/thumbnail/public/pictures/HumanEvolutionIcon350-120x120.jpg?itok=Tg7drSR8" width="100" height="100" alt="Profile picture for user gregladen" typeof="foaf:Image" class="img-responsive" /> </a> </div> </article> </footer> </article> <article data-comment-user-id="0" id="comment-1453642" class="js-comment comment-wrapper clearfix"> <mark class="hidden" data-comment-timestamp="1376324665"></mark> <div class="well"> <strong></strong> <div class="field field--name-comment-body field--type-text-long field--label-hidden field--item"><p><em>One thing that puzzles me about this case is why no heads (other than Snowden’s) have been rolling at Booz Allen Hamilton, the contractor which employed him. Whatever your opinions of Snowden, it is clear that whoever hired the guy screwed up–the hiring process is supposed to weed out the sort of person who would do what Snowden did</em></p> <p>While heads may roll (have they? How good is our info on this?), I don't think it is a clear cut case of incompetent or even sloppy hiring. If you take Snowden, and also Bradley Manning, at his word, and I don't know why that should not at least be considered, they entered into their positions as young, idealistic patriots, already inside the bubble. Being young, what they saw and learned changed them.</p> <p>At least from the outside, it looks like pretty text-book whistle blowing. And yes, whistle-blowing involves betraying at least the trust, if not the laws, contracts and oaths, you have promised your employer to uphold. It is a classic utilitarian dilemma.</p> <p>"<a href="http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Superior_orders">Orders are orders</a>" is not an airtight defense for complicity in immoral actions.</p> </div> <drupal-render-placeholder callback="comment.lazy_builders:renderLinks" arguments="0=1453642&amp;1=default&amp;2=en&amp;3=" token="9C8XjoGpP0QfzsRdByBefuqeWMQyB0Zc6xT_-bmLOVc"></drupal-render-placeholder> </div> <footer> <em>By <span lang="" typeof="schema:Person" property="schema:name" datatype="">coby (not verified)</span> on 12 Aug 2013 <a href="https://scienceblogs.com/taxonomy/term/4838/feed#comment-1453642">#permalink</a></em> <article typeof="schema:Person" about="/user/0"> <div class="field field--name-user-picture field--type-image field--label-hidden field--item"> <a href="/user/0" hreflang="und"><img src="/files/styles/thumbnail/public/default_images/icon-user.png?itok=yQw_eG_q" width="100" height="100" alt="User Image" typeof="foaf:Image" class="img-responsive" /> </a> </div> </article> </footer> </article> <article data-comment-user-id="0" id="comment-1453643" class="js-comment comment-wrapper clearfix"> <mark class="hidden" data-comment-timestamp="1376337512"></mark> <div class="well"> <strong></strong> <div class="field field--name-comment-body field--type-text-long field--label-hidden field--item"><p>If you designed everything with that in mind, you could shut everything down in a few seconds. The power grid we have was not designed with that in mind, so it would take longer. </p> <p>There are switches and circuit breakers to take power plants on and off line. I think the biggest issue would be coordinating the shut-down and having the decision made to do so in enough time to accomplish it. </p> <p>You would want to first shed as much load as possible, then break the grid into small pieces, then shut each piece down and ground as much of it as you can. </p> <p>The weak point would be nuclear power plants. They still need lots of power for cooling and running the control systems. That would have to be generated onsite. </p> <p>Once the grid is powered down and all the power plants are disconnected, then electrical workers would need to scurry around to all the big transformers and make sure they were physically disconnected, locally shorted and locally grounded.</p> </div> <drupal-render-placeholder callback="comment.lazy_builders:renderLinks" arguments="0=1453643&amp;1=default&amp;2=en&amp;3=" token="USkMM0tOagNQKvXznQBa_qa0vErzgmxkcgTmlVFwARc"></drupal-render-placeholder> </div> <footer> <em>By <span lang="" typeof="schema:Person" property="schema:name" datatype="">daedalus2u (not verified)</span> on 12 Aug 2013 <a href="https://scienceblogs.com/taxonomy/term/4838/feed#comment-1453643">#permalink</a></em> <article typeof="schema:Person" about="/user/0"> <div class="field field--name-user-picture field--type-image field--label-hidden field--item"> <a href="/user/0" hreflang="und"><img src="/files/styles/thumbnail/public/default_images/icon-user.png?itok=yQw_eG_q" width="100" height="100" alt="User Image" typeof="foaf:Image" class="img-responsive" /> </a> </div> </article> </footer> </article> <article data-comment-user-id="0" id="comment-1453644" class="js-comment comment-wrapper clearfix"> <mark class="hidden" data-comment-timestamp="1376376441"></mark> <div class="well"> <strong></strong> <div class="field field--name-comment-body field--type-text-long field--label-hidden field--item"><p><i>If you take Snowden, and also Bradley Manning, at his word, and I don’t know why that should not at least be considered, they entered into their positions as young, idealistic patriots, already inside the bubble. Being young, what they saw and learned changed them.</i></p> <p>I don't know about Manning, but the reporting I've seen on the Snowden case says that he was already planning to do a document dump of some kind when he took the job with Booz Allen, and allegedly was in contact with Glenn Greenwald (the Grauniad reporter/commentator who broke the story) before starting the job. Which plans he concealed from his prospective employer. Said employer was under contract to the NSA in order to help run a program which, Snowden alleges, was designed to spy on US citizens in the United States without probable cause. Greenwald is a US citizen residing in Brazil, so the laws restricting the collection of US domestic communications traffic without probable cause do not apply to communications between Snowden and Greenwald. (US law seems to be anything goes WRT international communications, and Greenwald's history as a national security gadfly would make him a person of interest to the watchers.) So take your pick: (1) Booz Allen should have known what Snowden was up to, but didn't; (2) they knew what he was up to, and they let him do it anyway (for reasons which may be honorable or otherwise), or (3) Snowden is a sociopathic liar, and should have been weeded out on those grounds. In cases (1) and (3), I would have expected somebody to publicly either fall on his sword or be fired, even if it was a low-level HR flunky, just for the sake of optics. I may be incorrect in assuming that Booz Allen has any aptitude at addressing optics problems.</p> </div> <drupal-render-placeholder callback="comment.lazy_builders:renderLinks" arguments="0=1453644&amp;1=default&amp;2=en&amp;3=" token="XkZJXhrgNUwVlmVOM16BvEDBTjYhQ-zuDWkSXjVmE84"></drupal-render-placeholder> </div> <footer> <em>By <span lang="" typeof="schema:Person" property="schema:name" datatype="">Eric Lund (not verified)</span> on 13 Aug 2013 <a href="https://scienceblogs.com/taxonomy/term/4838/feed#comment-1453644">#permalink</a></em> <article typeof="schema:Person" about="/user/0"> <div class="field field--name-user-picture field--type-image field--label-hidden field--item"> <a href="/user/0" hreflang="und"><img src="/files/styles/thumbnail/public/default_images/icon-user.png?itok=yQw_eG_q" width="100" height="100" alt="User Image" typeof="foaf:Image" class="img-responsive" /> </a> </div> </article> </footer> </article> <article data-comment-user-id="0" id="comment-1453645" class="js-comment comment-wrapper clearfix"> <mark class="hidden" data-comment-timestamp="1376377427"></mark> <div class="well"> <strong></strong> <div class="field field--name-comment-body field--type-text-long field--label-hidden field--item"><p>@daedelus2u: There are steps short of a full shutdown that electricity companies can take, and probably would have to take in a Carrington scenario, because the lead time for those is shorter than for most geomagnetic storms. (Carrington spotted the flare at about 1100 London time; the storm hit about 18 hours later, allowing telegraph operators in the northeastern US to operate on induced ground currents alone that night.)</p> <p>One of the big issues is that grid interconnections create a very long effective antenna. The eastern US grid interconnection (one of three major grid systems in the US) covers from Maine west to Montana and south to Miami. We're talking 2000 km of antenna. The ~1000 km line between James Bay and Montreal (at particularly susceptible latitudes, and over a terrain of particularly susceptible rock) was enough to cause the March 1989 storm (the biggest of the satellite era, estimated to be about 1/3 the strength of the Carrington event) to bring down the electricity network for the entire province of Quebec. But since then Hydro Quebec has taken steps to harden their transformers, as well as capacitive coupling to ground in order to mitigate the effects of geomagnetically induced currents. Most US operators have not been taking such measures.</p> </div> <drupal-render-placeholder callback="comment.lazy_builders:renderLinks" arguments="0=1453645&amp;1=default&amp;2=en&amp;3=" token="j_iywOBynpJvhDS40UewETCPsqMhuGiUxRnjkC5_y1M"></drupal-render-placeholder> </div> <footer> <em>By <span lang="" typeof="schema:Person" property="schema:name" datatype="">Eric Lund (not verified)</span> on 13 Aug 2013 <a href="https://scienceblogs.com/taxonomy/term/4838/feed#comment-1453645">#permalink</a></em> <article typeof="schema:Person" about="/user/0"> <div class="field field--name-user-picture field--type-image field--label-hidden field--item"> <a href="/user/0" hreflang="und"><img src="/files/styles/thumbnail/public/default_images/icon-user.png?itok=yQw_eG_q" width="100" height="100" alt="User Image" typeof="foaf:Image" class="img-responsive" /> </a> </div> </article> </footer> </article> <article data-comment-user-id="31" id="comment-1453646" class="js-comment comment-wrapper clearfix"> <mark class="hidden" data-comment-timestamp="1376384796"></mark> <div class="well"> <strong></strong> <div class="field field--name-comment-body field--type-text-long field--label-hidden field--item"><p>"The weak point would be nuclear power plants. They still need lots of power for cooling and running the control systems. That would have to be generated onsite."</p> <p>So, there is a scenario where a nuke plant shuts partway down just making enough electricity to cool itself, or goes all the way down and uses generators to run the cooling .Then the plasma strikes. This shuts down all the electrical circuitry at the power plant. This means all sensors, control servos, and the cooling system. So the plant heats up and melts down, goes critical, and experiences hydrogen and/or fission-related explosions.</p> <p>And this happens in all the nuclear power plants in the whole world all at once!!!!!</p> <p>This is going to make a great movie.</p> </div> <drupal-render-placeholder callback="comment.lazy_builders:renderLinks" arguments="0=1453646&amp;1=default&amp;2=en&amp;3=" token="Gr86ULjYR8SAG6lOoUGr4grnLrvgAWkus0vQxQ_hLb0"></drupal-render-placeholder> </div> <footer> <em>By <a title="View user profile." href="/author/gregladen" lang="" about="/author/gregladen" typeof="schema:Person" property="schema:name" datatype="">gregladen</a> on 13 Aug 2013 <a href="https://scienceblogs.com/taxonomy/term/4838/feed#comment-1453646">#permalink</a></em> <article typeof="schema:Person" about="/author/gregladen"> <div class="field field--name-user-picture field--type-image field--label-hidden field--item"> <a href="/author/gregladen" hreflang="en"><img src="/files/styles/thumbnail/public/pictures/HumanEvolutionIcon350-120x120.jpg?itok=Tg7drSR8" width="100" height="100" alt="Profile picture for user gregladen" typeof="foaf:Image" class="img-responsive" /> </a> </div> </article> </footer> </article> <article data-comment-user-id="0" id="comment-1453647" class="js-comment comment-wrapper clearfix"> <mark class="hidden" data-comment-timestamp="1376395775"></mark> <div class="well"> <strong></strong> <div class="field field--name-comment-body field--type-text-long field--label-hidden field--item"><p>Oh good grief.... I wonder if Snowden really said that, or if it's a fake; Russian media is not reputed for its sterling journalistic ethics, though one might argue whether to place it above or below The Daily Mail. I don't know enough about Russian journalism to say. That said, good grief. Assuming it's legit, then it's just one more notch against my opinion of Snowden and whatever lazy idiot did his clearance investigation.</p> <p>I mean, if there's a massive, Constitution-defying spying program, that needs to be addressed. But Snowden is definitely an oathbreaker, possibly was intending to break that oath before he even made it, and has rather depressing credentials. He did not plan his escape particularly well, which at least argues against him having been recruited by anybody, or at least anybody competent. (Which is something to be relieved about, I guess.) I'm not too keen on the fact that he abandoned his girlfriend either. And now this.... If he believes this, then he is a grade A kook seriously overinterpreting what he saw at his job.</p> <p>I mean, this isn't just suggesting the possibility of a Carrington Event for which we are underprepared. No, this is suggesting a specific event, predicted 14 years ago . . . . . . that would not merely disrupt our economy but actually kill most of us. Two months to extinction.</p> <p>Sorry, that part is just ridiculous. A really really really powerful geomagnetic storm can cripple our power grid and damage our telecommunications networks; this would be devastating to our civilization, but it wouldn't be an extinction event. Assuming the grid can't be repaired within a few months, you'd start seeing starvation related deaths, heat related deaths, cold related deaths. But you wouldn't be seeing a single death due to the solar flare itself, because they are basically harmless to living tissue on Earth. OK, maybe in the higher latitudes a few more people might get cancer. That's about it. It's not like the Sun's going to go nova.</p> </div> <drupal-render-placeholder callback="comment.lazy_builders:renderLinks" arguments="0=1453647&amp;1=default&amp;2=en&amp;3=" token="DaCDmhzBEKqfHp3wVdJK3eBmZAkDKgTYSwE7fxcarcI"></drupal-render-placeholder> </div> <footer> <em>By <span lang="" typeof="schema:Person" property="schema:name" datatype="">Calli Arcale (not verified)</span> on 13 Aug 2013 <a href="https://scienceblogs.com/taxonomy/term/4838/feed#comment-1453647">#permalink</a></em> <article typeof="schema:Person" about="/user/0"> <div class="field field--name-user-picture field--type-image field--label-hidden field--item"> <a href="/user/0" hreflang="und"><img src="/files/styles/thumbnail/public/default_images/icon-user.png?itok=yQw_eG_q" width="100" height="100" alt="User Image" typeof="foaf:Image" class="img-responsive" /> </a> </div> </article> </footer> </article> <article data-comment-user-id="0" id="comment-1453648" class="js-comment comment-wrapper clearfix"> <mark class="hidden" data-comment-timestamp="1376469905"></mark> <div class="well"> <strong></strong> <div class="field field--name-comment-body field--type-text-long field--label-hidden field--item"><p>Lol! Like the CIA knows jack shit about solar flares, and like anyone can predict them 14 years in advance. Riiiight... Snowden's name attached to this is just a red herring.</p> </div> <drupal-render-placeholder callback="comment.lazy_builders:renderLinks" arguments="0=1453648&amp;1=default&amp;2=en&amp;3=" token="OubOquXoFrDMzs6G_Jq_uqWEFQRxJB-sqVBaizkEJME"></drupal-render-placeholder> </div> <footer> <em>By <span lang="" typeof="schema:Person" property="schema:name" datatype="">Artor (not verified)</span> on 14 Aug 2013 <a href="https://scienceblogs.com/taxonomy/term/4838/feed#comment-1453648">#permalink</a></em> <article typeof="schema:Person" about="/user/0"> <div class="field field--name-user-picture field--type-image field--label-hidden field--item"> <a href="/user/0" hreflang="und"><img src="/files/styles/thumbnail/public/default_images/icon-user.png?itok=yQw_eG_q" width="100" height="100" alt="User Image" typeof="foaf:Image" class="img-responsive" /> </a> </div> </article> </footer> </article> <article data-comment-user-id="0" id="comment-1453649" class="js-comment comment-wrapper clearfix"> <mark class="hidden" data-comment-timestamp="1376510373"></mark> <div class="well"> <strong></strong> <div class="field field--name-comment-body field--type-text-long field--label-hidden field--item"><p>I am 62 years old, so I should know better by now, but I am amazed at how thoroughly the discussions around Bradley Manning and Edward Snowden has shifted from the content of their messages to the content of the characters. One other point: when anti-GMO, an anti-science folks use language such as "tools of Big Pharma" or "Frankenfood" I just stop reading. When you use terms like "cult members" and "some sexy speaker at a skeptical convention I just met in a bar who has slipped me a Mickey." I just stop reading.</p> </div> <drupal-render-placeholder callback="comment.lazy_builders:renderLinks" arguments="0=1453649&amp;1=default&amp;2=en&amp;3=" token="pDDXJQbHuvrfHDWvb2X1hkJy3wdN2MFEc4tYAKsKPGA"></drupal-render-placeholder> </div> <footer> <em>By <span lang="" typeof="schema:Person" property="schema:name" datatype="">Theo51 (not verified)</span> on 14 Aug 2013 <a href="https://scienceblogs.com/taxonomy/term/4838/feed#comment-1453649">#permalink</a></em> <article typeof="schema:Person" about="/user/0"> <div class="field field--name-user-picture field--type-image field--label-hidden field--item"> <a href="/user/0" hreflang="und"><img src="/files/styles/thumbnail/public/default_images/icon-user.png?itok=yQw_eG_q" width="100" height="100" alt="User Image" typeof="foaf:Image" class="img-responsive" /> </a> </div> </article> </footer> </article> <article data-comment-user-id="0" id="comment-1453650" class="js-comment comment-wrapper clearfix"> <mark class="hidden" data-comment-timestamp="1376511167"></mark> <div class="well"> <strong></strong> <div class="field field--name-comment-body field--type-text-long field--label-hidden field--item"><p>No, you would not try to keep a nuke plant operating on reduced power in the event of a Carrington-type event. You would shut it down, put all the control rods in, make it sub-critical and generate electricity onsite with generators to run what needed to be run with electricity. </p> <p>As long as the power lines to the power plant were severed, it might be shielded well enough for diesel generators inside it to continue to operate. </p> <p>The problem is that some very large transformers have a very long lead time (years), and require the products of large factories (steel sheet of specific composition, copper wire, kapton insulation, potting resins). These large factories in turn require large transformers to supply them with power. </p> <p>There was a recent (last year or so) decision that required emergency power to do the spent fuel cooling to last for 2 years and the reason cited was a Carrington-type event. I remember suggesting that the cheapest solution would likely be putting everything into dry storage instead of a cooling pool.</p> </div> <drupal-render-placeholder callback="comment.lazy_builders:renderLinks" arguments="0=1453650&amp;1=default&amp;2=en&amp;3=" token="M6v13RPWb0imuUCTES7cw5pYyeRlchTEk592E71QhXI"></drupal-render-placeholder> </div> <footer> <em>By <span lang="" typeof="schema:Person" property="schema:name" datatype="">daedalus2u (not verified)</span> on 14 Aug 2013 <a href="https://scienceblogs.com/taxonomy/term/4838/feed#comment-1453650">#permalink</a></em> <article typeof="schema:Person" about="/user/0"> <div class="field field--name-user-picture field--type-image field--label-hidden field--item"> <a href="/user/0" hreflang="und"><img src="/files/styles/thumbnail/public/default_images/icon-user.png?itok=yQw_eG_q" width="100" height="100" alt="User Image" typeof="foaf:Image" class="img-responsive" /> </a> </div> </article> </footer> </article> <article data-comment-user-id="31" id="comment-1453651" class="js-comment comment-wrapper clearfix"> <mark class="hidden" data-comment-timestamp="1376549135"></mark> <div class="well"> <strong></strong> <div class="field field--name-comment-body field--type-text-long field--label-hidden field--item"><p>Theo51, you must have missed a lot of things in those 62 years if you stop reading as soon as it gets funny. I agree with you about content vs. character, but they are both things that exist, and I happen to be talking about character ... of their supporters, not the men. But, maybe you don't want me to talk about those things. But, you can't tell me not to it turns out! </p> <p>Daedalus2u, a current generation nuke plant shut down to that level and spent fuel pools still require cooling, right? So this would rely on the power generation system (diesel or whatever) to be shielded and possibly to even be able to be knocked off line and repaired very quickly. (I have a feeling they would do better at the first part and ignore the second part)</p> <p>Also, I assume none of this is in place now anywhere.</p> </div> <drupal-render-placeholder callback="comment.lazy_builders:renderLinks" arguments="0=1453651&amp;1=default&amp;2=en&amp;3=" token="InH16_hOAnXvHg7hnHpP9q8mPFjMUj4Ip6QdxuMJabc"></drupal-render-placeholder> </div> <footer> <em>By <a title="View user profile." href="/author/gregladen" lang="" about="/author/gregladen" typeof="schema:Person" property="schema:name" datatype="">gregladen</a> on 15 Aug 2013 <a href="https://scienceblogs.com/taxonomy/term/4838/feed#comment-1453651">#permalink</a></em> <article typeof="schema:Person" about="/author/gregladen"> <div class="field field--name-user-picture field--type-image field--label-hidden field--item"> <a href="/author/gregladen" hreflang="en"><img src="/files/styles/thumbnail/public/pictures/HumanEvolutionIcon350-120x120.jpg?itok=Tg7drSR8" width="100" height="100" alt="Profile picture for user gregladen" typeof="foaf:Image" class="img-responsive" /> </a> </div> </article> </footer> </article> <article data-comment-user-id="0" id="comment-1453652" class="js-comment comment-wrapper clearfix"> <mark class="hidden" data-comment-timestamp="1376585979"></mark> <div class="well"> <strong></strong> <div class="field field--name-comment-body field--type-text-long field--label-hidden field--item"><p>How much heat the spent fuel pools are dissipating depends on when the fuel was replaced. The problem happens if there is a lot of spent fuel present. </p> <p>They really should get that spent fuel off site and someplace else. You could cool spent fuel with flowing water, as in the open ocean or a river. Not ideal, but better than letting it melt. </p> <p>The reactor would require pumps for cooling, and there wouldn't be time to remove the fuel. You could have those pumps powered directly by a diesel or a turbine. You would want electricity to monitor everything. </p> <p>There were several problems that complicated things at Fukishimo. The spent fuel pools went dry, which removed the water that was blocking the radiation. That made the radiation levels at the top of the pools too high for human exposure. The radiation isn't line of sight, it scatters off of thing, even air, so the whole area couldn't be approached. </p> <p>If they had simply installed piping to allow water to be remotely added to the pools, that would have prevented them from going dry. Once they went dry, the fuel got hot enough for the zirconium to catch on fire and that released the fission products in the spent fuel.</p> </div> <drupal-render-placeholder callback="comment.lazy_builders:renderLinks" arguments="0=1453652&amp;1=default&amp;2=en&amp;3=" token="vLrph42_E11K75fU9EPRgngMVpsd39xcYgyP70cCCKE"></drupal-render-placeholder> </div> <footer> <em>By <span lang="" typeof="schema:Person" property="schema:name" datatype="">daedalus2u (not verified)</span> on 15 Aug 2013 <a href="https://scienceblogs.com/taxonomy/term/4838/feed#comment-1453652">#permalink</a></em> <article typeof="schema:Person" about="/user/0"> <div class="field field--name-user-picture field--type-image field--label-hidden field--item"> <a href="/user/0" hreflang="und"><img src="/files/styles/thumbnail/public/default_images/icon-user.png?itok=yQw_eG_q" width="100" height="100" alt="User Image" typeof="foaf:Image" class="img-responsive" /> </a> </div> </article> </footer> </article> <article data-comment-user-id="0" id="comment-1453653" class="js-comment comment-wrapper clearfix"> <mark class="hidden" data-comment-timestamp="1376598943"></mark> <div class="well"> <strong></strong> <div class="field field--name-comment-body field--type-text-long field--label-hidden field--item"><p>It is not funny. It is didactic and distracting and self-serving to use such language. We need to be sussing out the truth and examining and giving our takes on the actual actions of NSA folks. There are many, many more articles on all NSA activities than the one that you site. You look for slivers of evidence to support your belief. This is called confirmation bias, as you know. I have no investment for or against Mr. Snowden. I just want to learn what the NSA is doing and try to form an opinion and react to that. How are you "funny" comments any different that the frankenfood" commenters? Ha.</p> </div> <drupal-render-placeholder callback="comment.lazy_builders:renderLinks" arguments="0=1453653&amp;1=default&amp;2=en&amp;3=" token="Tt0EigovqqcAcxEzp7zd7J608P6efyvoUbbSq100xeQ"></drupal-render-placeholder> </div> <footer> <em>By <span lang="" typeof="schema:Person" property="schema:name" datatype="">Theo51 (not verified)</span> on 15 Aug 2013 <a href="https://scienceblogs.com/taxonomy/term/4838/feed#comment-1453653">#permalink</a></em> <article typeof="schema:Person" about="/user/0"> <div class="field field--name-user-picture field--type-image field--label-hidden field--item"> <a href="/user/0" hreflang="und"><img src="/files/styles/thumbnail/public/default_images/icon-user.png?itok=yQw_eG_q" width="100" height="100" alt="User Image" typeof="foaf:Image" class="img-responsive" /> </a> </div> </article> </footer> </article> </section> <ul class="links inline list-inline"><li class="comment-forbidden"><a href="/user/login?destination=/gregladen/2013/08/11/oh-please-tell-me-half-my-friends-are-not-accidental-cult-members%23comment-form">Log in</a> to post comments</li></ul> Sun, 11 Aug 2013 15:39:24 +0000 gregladen 32839 at https://scienceblogs.com Adaptation 101 https://scienceblogs.com/illconsidered/2010/08/adaptation-101 <span>Adaptation 101</span> <div class="field field--name-body field--type-text-with-summary field--label-hidden field--item"><p>As in <a href="http://scienceblogs.com/illconsidered/2010/08/quote_mining_101.php">the example I just highlighted</a>, we climate mitigation advocates are frequently attacked for alledgedly not wanting to do anything to promote or help people adapt to changes that are after all already underway.</p> <p>This post is meant to change that lack of balance on A Few Things Ill Considered.</p> <!--more--><p>To all and sundry, I bring to your attention the definitive guide to adaptation in the face of global climate disruption:</p> <p><a href="http://scienceblogs.com/illconsidered/images/be-ready-with-forrest-griffin-front.jpg"><img src="http://scienceblogs.com/illconsidered/wp-content/blogs.dir/434/files/2012/04/i-fb93ed1ff0f78dfe945ec6bb9ef8384a-be-ready-with-forrest-griffin-front-thumb-500x757-55028.jpg" alt="i-fb93ed1ff0f78dfe945ec6bb9ef8384a-be-ready-with-forrest-griffin-front-thumb-500x757-55028.jpg" /></a><br /> (This is a <a href="http://www.forrestgriffin.net/news/?jid=60">real book</a>, by the way!)</p> <p>For those who like to skip to the end, <a href="http://scienceblogs.com/illconsidered/images/be-ready-with-forrest-griffin-back.png">here is the back cover</a>. And speaking of skip, thanks to him for bringing this to my attention, a good find!</p> </div> <span><a title="View user profile." href="/author/illconsidered" lang="" about="/author/illconsidered" typeof="schema:Person" property="schema:name" datatype="">illconsidered</a></span> <span>Wed, 08/25/2010 - 06:59</span> <div class="field field--name-field-blog-tags field--type-entity-reference field--label-inline"> <div class="field--label">Tags</div> <div class="field--items"> <div class="field--item"><a href="/tag/humour" hreflang="en">humour</a></div> <div class="field--item"><a href="/tag/adaptation" hreflang="en">adaptation</a></div> <div class="field--item"><a href="/tag/apocalypse" hreflang="en">apocalypse</a></div> <div class="field--item"><a href="/tag/climate-disruption" hreflang="en">climate disruption</a></div> </div> </div> <section> <article data-comment-user-id="0" id="comment-1590315" class="js-comment comment-wrapper clearfix"> <mark class="hidden" data-comment-timestamp="1282735215"></mark> <div class="well"> <strong></strong> <div class="field field--name-comment-body field--type-text-long field--label-hidden field--item"><p>I don't care what Crakar says. Here is photographic proof of him acting on the precautionary principle.</p> </div> <drupal-render-placeholder callback="comment.lazy_builders:renderLinks" arguments="0=1590315&amp;1=default&amp;2=en&amp;3=" token="X_v_OmH4SMBJg49bKEOl80iPsre39uuhbBOVdgmiRH4"></drupal-render-placeholder> </div> <footer> <em>By <span lang="" typeof="schema:Person" property="schema:name" datatype="">skip (not verified)</span> on 25 Aug 2010 <a href="https://scienceblogs.com/taxonomy/term/4838/feed#comment-1590315">#permalink</a></em> <article typeof="schema:Person" about="/user/0"> <div class="field field--name-user-picture field--type-image field--label-hidden field--item"> <a href="/user/0" hreflang="und"><img src="/files/styles/thumbnail/public/default_images/icon-user.png?itok=yQw_eG_q" width="100" height="100" alt="User Image" typeof="foaf:Image" class="img-responsive" /> </a> </div> </article> </footer> </article> </section> <ul class="links inline list-inline"><li class="comment-forbidden"><a href="/user/login?destination=/illconsidered/2010/08/adaptation-101%23comment-form">Log in</a> to post comments</li></ul> Wed, 25 Aug 2010 10:59:43 +0000 illconsidered 41342 at https://scienceblogs.com You've Still Got At Least Until Friday Before the End of the World https://scienceblogs.com/casaubonsbook/2010/08/03/youve-still-got-at-least-until <span>You&#039;ve Still Got At Least Until Friday Before the End of the World</span> <div class="field field--name-body field--type-text-with-summary field--label-hidden field--item"><p>Now it is no secret that I think that we are facing a major shift in our society, and one that will not be entirely fun, to put it mildly. It should also be no secret that while I love to write jokingly about when zombies come, I don't actually believe we're facing an apocalypse of any kind. Indeed, as I've written many times, part of the problem with addressing our situation is that we flit wildly between assumptions of techno-utopianism and absolute apocalypticism. I think what we are facing is serious enough without turning it into a cartoon, unless, of course, there are actual zombies in it.</p> <p>So this morning, when I woke up to a passel of links worrying folks about the-end-of-the-world-due-to-solar-apocalypse, I did what any good Prophetess of Doom does when confronted with such events. I kicked the sleeping astrophysicist and asked him if the world was going to end today due to our solar event. His first responses were largely unintelligible, but when it became clear I wasn't going to let him go back to sleep, he responded with his customary scientific rigor. "No. Please go away now." As to expand on this he responded by saying "I said no!"</p> <p>So there you have it - sorry, you'll have to wait until at least Friday for your regularly scheduled apocalypse. Why Friday? Because whenever someone tells me they are worried about our troubles I reassure them that they have at least until Friday before the world ends - I've been doing it for five years now and I've always been right. Do you want to argue with a record like that?</p> <p>I really like what the <a href="http://scienceblogs.com/thescian/2010/08/a_bit_of_hot_sun_heading_our_w.php">Scientific Indian has to say about this </a>- I agree, this is in part a reflection of our own ego-centrism. </p> </div> <span><a title="View user profile." href="/author/sastyk" lang="" about="/author/sastyk" typeof="schema:Person" property="schema:name" datatype="">sastyk</a></span> <span>Tue, 08/03/2010 - 03:26</span> <div class="field field--name-field-blog-tags field--type-entity-reference field--label-inline"> <div class="field--label">Tags</div> <div class="field--items"> <div class="field--item"><a href="/tag/apocalyptica-and-astrophysicist" hreflang="en">apocalyptica and the astrophysicist</a></div> <div class="field--item"><a href="/tag/apocalypse" hreflang="en">apocalypse</a></div> <div class="field--item"><a href="/tag/grid" hreflang="en">grid</a></div> <div class="field--item"><a href="/tag/solar-flare" hreflang="en">solar flare</a></div> <div class="field--item"><a href="/tag/apocalyptica-and-astrophysicist" hreflang="en">apocalyptica and the astrophysicist</a></div> </div> </div> <section> <article data-comment-user-id="0" id="comment-1880066" class="js-comment comment-wrapper clearfix"> <mark class="hidden" data-comment-timestamp="1280822830"></mark> <div class="well"> <strong></strong> <div class="field field--name-comment-body field--type-text-long field--label-hidden field--item"><p>"I don't actually believe we're facing an apocalypse of any kind."</p> <p>Apocalypse is in the eye of the beholder. Don't you think a human die-off back to a billion or less over, oh, let's say the next 50 years ala Limits to Growth would appear apocalyptic to those who are unfortunate enough to live through it? It doesn't have to be entire cities emptying out overnight to seem apocalyptic. Any confluence of limits to growth which creates death rates severe enough for that sort of year-over-year decline in human population will be a tragedy of biblical proportions.</p> </div> <drupal-render-placeholder callback="comment.lazy_builders:renderLinks" arguments="0=1880066&amp;1=default&amp;2=en&amp;3=" token="Lktw-csO-NEo1FxUOzAMON--5MlCKxEP81A3-AcjvI0"></drupal-render-placeholder> </div> <footer> <em>By <a rel="nofollow" href="http://doomsteaddiary.blogspot.com" lang="" typeof="schema:Person" property="schema:name" datatype="">Ed Straker (not verified)</a> on 03 Aug 2010 <a href="https://scienceblogs.com/taxonomy/term/4838/feed#comment-1880066">#permalink</a></em> <article typeof="schema:Person" about="/user/0"> <div class="field field--name-user-picture field--type-image field--label-hidden field--item"> <a href="/user/0" hreflang="und"><img src="/files/styles/thumbnail/public/default_images/icon-user.png?itok=yQw_eG_q" width="100" height="100" alt="User Image" typeof="foaf:Image" class="img-responsive" /> </a> </div> </article> </footer> </article> <article data-comment-user-id="0" id="comment-1880067" class="js-comment comment-wrapper clearfix"> <mark class="hidden" data-comment-timestamp="1280823327"></mark> <div class="well"> <strong></strong> <div class="field field--name-comment-body field--type-text-long field--label-hidden field--item"><p>Yup I was reaaly worried.Then I spotted it was Tuesday already and I was still alive and the internet was still functioning...panic over, for today at least.</p> </div> <drupal-render-placeholder callback="comment.lazy_builders:renderLinks" arguments="0=1880067&amp;1=default&amp;2=en&amp;3=" token="C5GicVdotnIC3OrCVylyXruKVjblJzh-xaWuYZJqo80"></drupal-render-placeholder> </div> <footer> <em>By <span lang="" typeof="schema:Person" property="schema:name" datatype="">Kate (not verified)</span> on 03 Aug 2010 <a href="https://scienceblogs.com/taxonomy/term/4838/feed#comment-1880067">#permalink</a></em> <article typeof="schema:Person" about="/user/0"> <div class="field field--name-user-picture field--type-image field--label-hidden field--item"> <a href="/user/0" hreflang="und"><img src="/files/styles/thumbnail/public/default_images/icon-user.png?itok=yQw_eG_q" width="100" height="100" alt="User Image" typeof="foaf:Image" class="img-responsive" /> </a> </div> </article> </footer> </article> <article data-comment-user-id="0" id="comment-1880068" class="js-comment comment-wrapper clearfix"> <mark class="hidden" data-comment-timestamp="1280824904"></mark> <div class="well"> <strong></strong> <div class="field field--name-comment-body field--type-text-long field--label-hidden field--item"><p>I don't mind people claiming that 'the end is near' in whatever that form takes. People have the right to be wrong and make fools of themselves. What I do object to is that there seems to be no down side to making the claim, often serially, and having it proved wrong time and time again. </p> <p>If I was named emperor of the universe, any day now I'm sure, if you made any apocalyptic prediction, and it didn't pan out you, would have to read a standard disclaimer announcing your failure before every comment, announcement or statement. You would have to issue this disclaimer for a full five years after the claim was proved wrong. </p> <p>Proposed standard warning that shall be placed as preamble to all statements written or uttered:</p> <p>Warning, I ______ (name) have previously made or repeated a claim of ______ (nature of claim - end of world, major disaster,etc.) on the ___ th day of ___ (month), ___ (year). This claim has been shown to have been false. </p> <p>For a period of no less than five years no further such claims shall be taken seriously and my views and opinions should carry little, if any, weight. I make this statement as penance for my crime of disinformation against society and as alternative to having the above statement tattooed upon my forehead. </p> <p>IMHO it isn't the outrageous claims, often driven by political or economic reasons, that are the problem. It is that they have no shame and pay no cost for their failed claims. </p> <p>If I ran a forum it would be interesting to have extreme claims that fall through associated with the poster for a period of time. Possibly inserted ahead of each of their posts as a sort of signature.</p> </div> <drupal-render-placeholder callback="comment.lazy_builders:renderLinks" arguments="0=1880068&amp;1=default&amp;2=en&amp;3=" token="oR-UP7yDeXfayz_8iOgLN3FklMvRcp9nV8mgtatfsWU"></drupal-render-placeholder> </div> <footer> <em>By <span lang="" typeof="schema:Person" property="schema:name" datatype="">Art (not verified)</span> on 03 Aug 2010 <a href="https://scienceblogs.com/taxonomy/term/4838/feed#comment-1880068">#permalink</a></em> <article typeof="schema:Person" about="/user/0"> <div class="field field--name-user-picture field--type-image field--label-hidden field--item"> <a href="/user/0" hreflang="und"><img src="/files/styles/thumbnail/public/default_images/icon-user.png?itok=yQw_eG_q" width="100" height="100" alt="User Image" typeof="foaf:Image" class="img-responsive" /> </a> </div> </article> </footer> </article> <article data-comment-user-id="0" id="comment-1880069" class="js-comment comment-wrapper clearfix"> <mark class="hidden" data-comment-timestamp="1280828376"></mark> <div class="well"> <strong></strong> <div class="field field--name-comment-body field--type-text-long field--label-hidden field--item"><p>Let's expand on that a bit.</p> <p>No apocalypse until at least Friday.<br /> No apocalypse on Friday, because That would mess with preparations for Shabbos.<br /> No apocalyse on Saturday, because it's Shabbos. Even the Messiah won't arrive on Shabbos 'because the Messiah is already here' on Shabbos, and if the Messiah is here I figure that apocalypse isn't allowed.</p> <p>Thus, we have until Sunday. </p> <p>In short, there's time to plant some more olive trees.</p> </div> <drupal-render-placeholder callback="comment.lazy_builders:renderLinks" arguments="0=1880069&amp;1=default&amp;2=en&amp;3=" token="bv17krHbkV6HMsxbg3VVitsXPfbxvLnZKvKij_wJK3g"></drupal-render-placeholder> </div> <footer> <em>By <a rel="nofollow" href="http://FernsFronds.blogspot.com" lang="" typeof="schema:Person" property="schema:name" datatype="">FernWise (not verified)</a> on 03 Aug 2010 <a href="https://scienceblogs.com/taxonomy/term/4838/feed#comment-1880069">#permalink</a></em> <article typeof="schema:Person" about="/user/0"> <div class="field field--name-user-picture field--type-image field--label-hidden field--item"> <a href="/user/0" hreflang="und"><img src="/files/styles/thumbnail/public/default_images/icon-user.png?itok=yQw_eG_q" width="100" height="100" alt="User Image" typeof="foaf:Image" class="img-responsive" /> </a> </div> </article> </footer> </article> <article data-comment-user-id="0" id="comment-1880070" class="js-comment comment-wrapper clearfix"> <mark class="hidden" data-comment-timestamp="1280828782"></mark> <div class="well"> <strong></strong> <div class="field field--name-comment-body field--type-text-long field--label-hidden field--item"><p>Far more exciting than the end of the world is that, should the CME stay headed our way, we could be up for some beautiful auroras tonight.</p> <p>What was this one again? C2? C3? If I recall correctly, Carrington was an X. People are freaking out over this?</p> </div> <drupal-render-placeholder callback="comment.lazy_builders:renderLinks" arguments="0=1880070&amp;1=default&amp;2=en&amp;3=" token="K4GjM4Kq8tdhiKOtN8lZfecusujMQw9kcPNDGYOwWVI"></drupal-render-placeholder> </div> <footer> <em>By <span lang="" typeof="schema:Person" property="schema:name" datatype="">Erin R (not verified)</span> on 03 Aug 2010 <a href="https://scienceblogs.com/taxonomy/term/4838/feed#comment-1880070">#permalink</a></em> <article typeof="schema:Person" about="/user/0"> <div class="field field--name-user-picture field--type-image field--label-hidden field--item"> <a href="/user/0" hreflang="und"><img src="/files/styles/thumbnail/public/default_images/icon-user.png?itok=yQw_eG_q" width="100" height="100" alt="User Image" typeof="foaf:Image" class="img-responsive" /> </a> </div> </article> </footer> </article> <article data-comment-user-id="0" id="comment-1880071" class="js-comment comment-wrapper clearfix"> <mark class="hidden" data-comment-timestamp="1280837978"></mark> <div class="well"> <strong></strong> <div class="field field--name-comment-body field--type-text-long field--label-hidden field--item"><p>Hang on, I was stuck in TX for a few days, so I appear to have missed the news. Which apocalypse is this? I have trouble keeping them straight in my mind.</p> </div> <drupal-render-placeholder callback="comment.lazy_builders:renderLinks" arguments="0=1880071&amp;1=default&amp;2=en&amp;3=" token="05vVPc9HyZo5jVJMyhBHgPuEtjsOUENOeJFasvBk3BM"></drupal-render-placeholder> </div> <footer> <em>By <span lang="" typeof="schema:Person" property="schema:name" datatype="">R. S. Buchanan (not verified)</span> on 03 Aug 2010 <a href="https://scienceblogs.com/taxonomy/term/4838/feed#comment-1880071">#permalink</a></em> <article typeof="schema:Person" about="/user/0"> <div class="field field--name-user-picture field--type-image field--label-hidden field--item"> <a href="/user/0" hreflang="und"><img src="/files/styles/thumbnail/public/default_images/icon-user.png?itok=yQw_eG_q" width="100" height="100" alt="User Image" typeof="foaf:Image" class="img-responsive" /> </a> </div> </article> </footer> </article> <article data-comment-user-id="0" id="comment-1880072" class="js-comment comment-wrapper clearfix"> <mark class="hidden" data-comment-timestamp="1280839304"></mark> <div class="well"> <strong></strong> <div class="field field--name-comment-body field--type-text-long field--label-hidden field--item"><p>Wait! I thought the answer was "not before Sunday" I mean, I guess until at least Friday is still not before Sunday, but I don't want to have to figure out what day of the week it is - weekends are much easier to distinguish (pesky tourists)!</p> </div> <drupal-render-placeholder callback="comment.lazy_builders:renderLinks" arguments="0=1880072&amp;1=default&amp;2=en&amp;3=" token="FvwjSu2ilDPQ1bBS6Dvk4NnazCYrm5tHOeFw7mlENPE"></drupal-render-placeholder> </div> <footer> <em>By <span lang="" typeof="schema:Person" property="schema:name" datatype="">curiousalexa (not verified)</span> on 03 Aug 2010 <a href="https://scienceblogs.com/taxonomy/term/4838/feed#comment-1880072">#permalink</a></em> <article typeof="schema:Person" about="/user/0"> <div class="field field--name-user-picture field--type-image field--label-hidden field--item"> <a href="/user/0" hreflang="und"><img src="/files/styles/thumbnail/public/default_images/icon-user.png?itok=yQw_eG_q" width="100" height="100" alt="User Image" typeof="foaf:Image" class="img-responsive" /> </a> </div> </article> </footer> </article> <article data-comment-user-id="0" id="comment-1880073" class="js-comment comment-wrapper clearfix"> <mark class="hidden" data-comment-timestamp="1280839991"></mark> <div class="well"> <strong></strong> <div class="field field--name-comment-body field--type-text-long field--label-hidden field--item"><p>I'm pretty sure if the apocalypse was happening due to astrophysicism, the astrophysicist would have told you before going to bed last night.</p> </div> <drupal-render-placeholder callback="comment.lazy_builders:renderLinks" arguments="0=1880073&amp;1=default&amp;2=en&amp;3=" token="e8aJefM5vpOjTLbrMEsN4pH2cao-ueGbuLJkaudcoFM"></drupal-render-placeholder> </div> <footer> <em>By <a rel="nofollow" href="http://www.newlifesd.blogspot.com" lang="" typeof="schema:Person" property="schema:name" datatype="">k8 (not verified)</a> on 03 Aug 2010 <a href="https://scienceblogs.com/taxonomy/term/4838/feed#comment-1880073">#permalink</a></em> <article typeof="schema:Person" about="/user/0"> <div class="field field--name-user-picture field--type-image field--label-hidden field--item"> <a href="/user/0" hreflang="und"><img src="/files/styles/thumbnail/public/default_images/icon-user.png?itok=yQw_eG_q" width="100" height="100" alt="User Image" typeof="foaf:Image" class="img-responsive" /> </a> </div> </article> </footer> </article> <article data-comment-user-id="0" id="comment-1880074" class="js-comment comment-wrapper clearfix"> <mark class="hidden" data-comment-timestamp="1280855711"></mark> <div class="well"> <strong></strong> <div class="field field--name-comment-body field--type-text-long field--label-hidden field--item"><p>We love talking about the weather here in Hooterville thanks to tornadoes, massive ice storms, floods, hail as big as baby heads and competing with the Valley of the Kings for those burn-your-face-off heat indexes.</p> <p>A big solar storm adds the element of 'crap from space' to the rich tapestry of our lives.</p> <p>The town lost half it's power for a week once because a squirrel became suicidal.</p> <p>NOAA has a space storm division on line with real time reports......yay.</p> <p>Last summer we all sat in the yard watching the transformers explode because the mayor spent all the infrastructure money on another clock(we have six municipal clocks in Hooterville).</p> <p>Apocalypse?</p> <p>Sure. Wadda ya got?</p> <p>*Puts on steel helmet*</p> <p>*makes coffee*</p> </div> <drupal-render-placeholder callback="comment.lazy_builders:renderLinks" arguments="0=1880074&amp;1=default&amp;2=en&amp;3=" token="eL9cRxs4BjCgvHVjtHMDY2UEqtYDLyZEnJ_J0X59rcU"></drupal-render-placeholder> </div> <footer> <em>By <span lang="" typeof="schema:Person" property="schema:name" datatype="">Prometheus (not verified)</span> on 03 Aug 2010 <a href="https://scienceblogs.com/taxonomy/term/4838/feed#comment-1880074">#permalink</a></em> <article typeof="schema:Person" about="/user/0"> <div class="field field--name-user-picture field--type-image field--label-hidden field--item"> <a href="/user/0" hreflang="und"><img src="/files/styles/thumbnail/public/default_images/icon-user.png?itok=yQw_eG_q" width="100" height="100" alt="User Image" typeof="foaf:Image" class="img-responsive" /> </a> </div> </article> </footer> </article> <article data-comment-user-id="0" id="comment-1880075" class="js-comment comment-wrapper clearfix"> <mark class="hidden" data-comment-timestamp="1280858324"></mark> <div class="well"> <strong></strong> <div class="field field--name-comment-body field--type-text-long field--label-hidden field--item"><p>I have a off-topic-for-this-post but on-topic-for-the-blog (mostly) question for you. If it's not too personal to share, what kind of planning do you do for retirement? I say the question is relevant, because the answer depends entirely on what you think will happen in the future. Do you think that our financial system will rebound enough that it's worth putting money into the traditional option of a mutual fund? Do you think social security will be around when you retire? Do you think it's better to put money in a bank's savings account (you won't make much money, but hopefully the capital will stay put)? Or do you go so far as to buy gold or stuff bills under your bed? (I'll bet you won't tell us if the last option is the case. :-) )</p> <p>My husband and I go back and forth about this. He wonders if it wouldn't be better to build our farm infrastructure to make us as self-sufficient as possible, but I know there's only so far our farm can take us. What do you think?</p> </div> <drupal-render-placeholder callback="comment.lazy_builders:renderLinks" arguments="0=1880075&amp;1=default&amp;2=en&amp;3=" token="8JVkyoIuuy7S-rCkcoSK1t7poT_jgz-GI06F7lwi4Lc"></drupal-render-placeholder> </div> <footer> <em>By <a rel="nofollow" href="http://www.waldeneffect.org" lang="" typeof="schema:Person" property="schema:name" datatype="">Anna (not verified)</a> on 03 Aug 2010 <a href="https://scienceblogs.com/taxonomy/term/4838/feed#comment-1880075">#permalink</a></em> <article typeof="schema:Person" about="/user/0"> <div class="field field--name-user-picture field--type-image field--label-hidden field--item"> <a href="/user/0" hreflang="und"><img src="/files/styles/thumbnail/public/default_images/icon-user.png?itok=yQw_eG_q" width="100" height="100" alt="User Image" typeof="foaf:Image" class="img-responsive" /> </a> </div> </article> </footer> </article> <article data-comment-user-id="78" id="comment-1880076" class="js-comment comment-wrapper clearfix"> <mark class="hidden" data-comment-timestamp="1280859069"></mark> <div class="well"> <strong></strong> <div class="field field--name-comment-body field--type-text-long field--label-hidden field--item"><p>Scott (I assume that's you - how many RS Buchanans can there be ;-)), I was thinking of the silly media items about solar storms that are turning a minor incident into a major one, but really, I'm not picky. And my readers are right - it should be Sunday, because we can't mess with Shabbos ;-).</p> <p>Sharon</p> </div> <drupal-render-placeholder callback="comment.lazy_builders:renderLinks" arguments="0=1880076&amp;1=default&amp;2=en&amp;3=" token="YkgsES1UFOiFbZr9-v2ky78EZVe-zlyZ38lIaDqQhIY"></drupal-render-placeholder> </div> <footer> <em>By <a title="View user profile." href="/author/sastyk" lang="" about="/author/sastyk" typeof="schema:Person" property="schema:name" datatype="">sastyk</a> on 03 Aug 2010 <a href="https://scienceblogs.com/taxonomy/term/4838/feed#comment-1880076">#permalink</a></em> <article typeof="schema:Person" about="/author/sastyk"> <div class="field field--name-user-picture field--type-image field--label-hidden field--item"> <a href="/author/sastyk" hreflang="en"><img src="/files/styles/thumbnail/public/default_images/icon-user.png?itok=yQw_eG_q" width="100" height="100" alt="User Image" typeof="foaf:Image" class="img-responsive" /> </a> </div> </article> </footer> </article> <article data-comment-user-id="0" id="comment-1880077" class="js-comment comment-wrapper clearfix"> <mark class="hidden" data-comment-timestamp="1280862616"></mark> <div class="well"> <strong></strong> <div class="field field--name-comment-body field--type-text-long field--label-hidden field--item"><p>Sharon, it's gotta be Friday. If it happened early enough in the day, then it'd all be over before Shabbos started, right? </p> <p>Besides, in our house we now use "when Friday comes" as shorthand for "when the long emergency really kicks into gear in our neck of the woods". It really works quite handily - except that occasionally one must clarify which kind of Friday you're talking about ... you know, THE Friday, or the regularly scheduled one that's coming up in a few days.</p> <p>And, to ramble a little further on this theme, one day after discussing your blog my husband grumpily said "with my luck, the world really WILL come to a crashing halt on a Friday, just so you can say 'see? Crazy Sharon was right.'"</p> </div> <drupal-render-placeholder callback="comment.lazy_builders:renderLinks" arguments="0=1880077&amp;1=default&amp;2=en&amp;3=" token="Mrk30LXfnQ_LcSdbknDeAeC7iyzdKKnUZFiOyB_bAqc"></drupal-render-placeholder> </div> <footer> <em>By <span lang="" typeof="schema:Person" property="schema:name" datatype="">Apple Jack Creek (not verified)</span> on 03 Aug 2010 <a href="https://scienceblogs.com/taxonomy/term/4838/feed#comment-1880077">#permalink</a></em> <article typeof="schema:Person" about="/user/0"> <div class="field field--name-user-picture field--type-image field--label-hidden field--item"> <a href="/user/0" hreflang="und"><img src="/files/styles/thumbnail/public/default_images/icon-user.png?itok=yQw_eG_q" width="100" height="100" alt="User Image" typeof="foaf:Image" class="img-responsive" /> </a> </div> </article> </footer> </article> <article data-comment-user-id="0" id="comment-1880078" class="js-comment comment-wrapper clearfix"> <mark class="hidden" data-comment-timestamp="1280869418"></mark> <div class="well"> <strong></strong> <div class="field field--name-comment-body field--type-text-long field--label-hidden field--item"><p>Sharon,</p> <p>Yep, it's me. </p> <p>If Apple Jack Creek is right and the Apocalypse happens erev Shabbos, can I punt on cleaning the bathroom? Or should I take a machmir position and clean as thought Shabbos is going to happen, but look up the bracha for sticking tape on the windows just in case? If the Apocalypse does come, do we say Shehehayanu?</p> </div> <drupal-render-placeholder callback="comment.lazy_builders:renderLinks" arguments="0=1880078&amp;1=default&amp;2=en&amp;3=" token="1gOXg8kUv7dqzjwHyMu_Q5GL5zdyFcAqXMDCexie47Y"></drupal-render-placeholder> </div> <footer> <em>By <span lang="" typeof="schema:Person" property="schema:name" datatype="">R. S. Buchanan (not verified)</span> on 03 Aug 2010 <a href="https://scienceblogs.com/taxonomy/term/4838/feed#comment-1880078">#permalink</a></em> <article typeof="schema:Person" about="/user/0"> <div class="field field--name-user-picture field--type-image field--label-hidden field--item"> <a href="/user/0" hreflang="und"><img src="/files/styles/thumbnail/public/default_images/icon-user.png?itok=yQw_eG_q" width="100" height="100" alt="User Image" typeof="foaf:Image" class="img-responsive" /> </a> </div> </article> </footer> </article> <article data-comment-user-id="78" id="comment-1880079" class="js-comment comment-wrapper clearfix"> <mark class="hidden" data-comment-timestamp="1280897838"></mark> <div class="well"> <strong></strong> <div class="field field--name-comment-body field--type-text-long field--label-hidden field--item"><p>I might not be the right person to ask, given that I feel that not only the apocalypse, but the blackberries being ripe or the dog doing something cute is an excellent reason to punt on cleaning the bathroom ;-).</p> <p>As for the rest, I guess we need a good apocalyptic Rav. Know one?</p> <p>Sharon</p> </div> <drupal-render-placeholder callback="comment.lazy_builders:renderLinks" arguments="0=1880079&amp;1=default&amp;2=en&amp;3=" token="Cs21LeciccD0qGAQps7qObL23PmOT6s71B53byp3gWY"></drupal-render-placeholder> </div> <footer> <em>By <a title="View user profile." href="/author/sastyk" lang="" about="/author/sastyk" typeof="schema:Person" property="schema:name" datatype="">sastyk</a> on 04 Aug 2010 <a href="https://scienceblogs.com/taxonomy/term/4838/feed#comment-1880079">#permalink</a></em> <article typeof="schema:Person" about="/author/sastyk"> <div class="field field--name-user-picture field--type-image field--label-hidden field--item"> <a href="/author/sastyk" hreflang="en"><img src="/files/styles/thumbnail/public/default_images/icon-user.png?itok=yQw_eG_q" width="100" height="100" alt="User Image" typeof="foaf:Image" class="img-responsive" /> </a> </div> </article> </footer> </article> <article data-comment-user-id="0" id="comment-1880080" class="js-comment comment-wrapper clearfix"> <mark class="hidden" data-comment-timestamp="1280899766"></mark> <div class="well"> <strong></strong> <div class="field field--name-comment-body field--type-text-long field--label-hidden field--item"><p>@5: Yeah, you've gotta wonder where all these panic merchants were last solar maximum. It was an X-15 flare that was responsible for the 1989 geomagnetic storm which knocked out power grids in Canada, but there was an X-20 in 2001 which fortunately only grazed us. A C-3 is pretty small beer really. </p> <p>Welcome to the age of the internet, where millions of ninnies will panic about the end of the world over things that happen all the frickin' time. Best buckle up for the burning, burning stupid as we move towards solar max, probably sometime in 2012... Forecasters are predicting a doozy. Combine an unusually high solar max with all the Mayan apocalypse twaddle, and you've got the recipe for a perfect storm of stupid.</p> </div> <drupal-render-placeholder callback="comment.lazy_builders:renderLinks" arguments="0=1880080&amp;1=default&amp;2=en&amp;3=" token="wsLtfIFIU0eU-q1r_tvPXjZBy0yKCcB4nr6UsQBdEKU"></drupal-render-placeholder> </div> <footer> <em>By <span lang="" typeof="schema:Person" property="schema:name" datatype="">Dunc (not verified)</span> on 04 Aug 2010 <a href="https://scienceblogs.com/taxonomy/term/4838/feed#comment-1880080">#permalink</a></em> <article typeof="schema:Person" about="/user/0"> <div class="field field--name-user-picture field--type-image field--label-hidden field--item"> <a href="/user/0" hreflang="und"><img src="/files/styles/thumbnail/public/default_images/icon-user.png?itok=yQw_eG_q" width="100" height="100" alt="User Image" typeof="foaf:Image" class="img-responsive" /> </a> </div> </article> </footer> </article> <article data-comment-user-id="0" id="comment-1880081" class="js-comment comment-wrapper clearfix"> <mark class="hidden" data-comment-timestamp="1280909564"></mark> <div class="well"> <strong></strong> <div class="field field--name-comment-body field--type-text-long field--label-hidden field--item"><p>To R.S.Buchanan - "stuck in Texas"?? That sounds pretty apocalyptic to me here in Wisconsin.</p> </div> <drupal-render-placeholder callback="comment.lazy_builders:renderLinks" arguments="0=1880081&amp;1=default&amp;2=en&amp;3=" token="2wOF3NVAsh3pjB2WjYZCMLb_W4EK6zpqcKTX35qyV38"></drupal-render-placeholder> </div> <footer> <em>By <span lang="" typeof="schema:Person" property="schema:name" datatype="">DennisP (not verified)</span> on 04 Aug 2010 <a href="https://scienceblogs.com/taxonomy/term/4838/feed#comment-1880081">#permalink</a></em> <article typeof="schema:Person" about="/user/0"> <div class="field field--name-user-picture field--type-image field--label-hidden field--item"> <a href="/user/0" hreflang="und"><img src="/files/styles/thumbnail/public/default_images/icon-user.png?itok=yQw_eG_q" width="100" height="100" alt="User Image" typeof="foaf:Image" class="img-responsive" /> </a> </div> </article> </footer> </article> <article data-comment-user-id="0" id="comment-1880082" class="js-comment comment-wrapper clearfix"> <mark class="hidden" data-comment-timestamp="1280915145"></mark> <div class="well"> <strong></strong> <div class="field field--name-comment-body field--type-text-long field--label-hidden field--item"><p>Anna @#10</p> <p>"If it's not too personal to share, what kind of planning do you do for retirement?"</p> <p>I do a lot of this work.</p> <p>Rural retirement plans are a whole different ball game.</p> <p>It is a great question because I have gone hoarse telling people that there really isn't a good place to put money right now.</p> <p>Even money in your mattress is subject to stagflation.</p> <p>Investing in the value of property you already own is always a good idea and one of the things you should look at for prioritizing those expenditures is what percentage of that expenditure will be reflected in an increased valuation of your farm.</p> <p>If you are willing to do quite a bit of homework on solvency the and nature of proposed infrastructure commitments in your and surrounding towns, municipal bonds can be tax free and an excellent opportunity to put money on the part of the grid upon which you depend. </p> <p>I think it is a good idea to own your homestead outright and as soon as that happens start building a very stable investment structure that will support all expense associated with that homestead.</p> <p>So in summary, buy the farm, hold the farm, work the farm and buy enough bonds and or ammo to keep the revenue man at bay.</p> <p>If there should be occasion due to infirmity or just inconvenience that signals time to move to town....</p> <p>... be the bank. Spread out capital gains, if any, over the life of the note and just pay income taxes on the interest.</p> <p>Let's see if I got em all.</p> <p>"Do you think that our financial system will rebound enough that it's worth putting money into the traditional option of a mutual fund?"</p> <p>Not anytime soon. About 60% of the market drop was a correction for phoney baloney paper pyramids. Get a DJIA chart and put a ruler on it from 1988 to 2010. Everything above the ruler was papier mache and tempera paints.</p> <p>"Do you think social security will be around when you retire?"</p> <p>Social Security is not around now. As long as the government has access to the "fund" for any purpose other than paying "benefits" then there is no fund, there are no payments and there are no benefits. There is a labor tax at the beginning of adulthood and welfare at the end of it. If you would like to depend on what is simply a matter of largess on the part of a federal bureaucracy so be it. I suspect it will be about as reliable as FEMA.</p> <p>"Do you think it's better to put money in a bank's savings account (you won't make much money, but hopefully the capital will stay put)?"</p> <p>Potentially insolvent institution insured by a demonstrably insolvent government, again your call.</p> <p>"Or do you go so far as to buy gold or stuff bills under your bed?"</p> <p>Better off planting tobacco and building a still. If it gets that bad, your neighbors will be lined up to give you their gold. </p> <p>Finally, weird apocalyptic investment advice:</p> <p>Acquire at least one essential material skill that you can barter for goods or services.</p> <p>Invest some time and money in vo-tech courses. Not only do you get the skill set, you develop a network of pals that also will know how to do stuff.</p> <p>Mine were plumbing and welding.</p> <p>Paid for themselves before I finished the courses and I estimate a savings of about 500+ bucks a year.</p> <p>I really want to learn bricklaying.</p> <p>Hope this helped.</p> </div> <drupal-render-placeholder callback="comment.lazy_builders:renderLinks" arguments="0=1880082&amp;1=default&amp;2=en&amp;3=" token="HJX6x51RrCTjlhQI6KbpGIIAj-bPj0S7dPhcINJdcVY"></drupal-render-placeholder> </div> <footer> <em>By <span lang="" typeof="schema:Person" property="schema:name" datatype="">Prometheus (not verified)</span> on 04 Aug 2010 <a href="https://scienceblogs.com/taxonomy/term/4838/feed#comment-1880082">#permalink</a></em> <article typeof="schema:Person" about="/user/0"> <div class="field field--name-user-picture field--type-image field--label-hidden field--item"> <a href="/user/0" hreflang="und"><img src="/files/styles/thumbnail/public/default_images/icon-user.png?itok=yQw_eG_q" width="100" height="100" alt="User Image" typeof="foaf:Image" class="img-responsive" /> </a> </div> </article> </footer> </article> <article data-comment-user-id="0" id="comment-1880083" class="js-comment comment-wrapper clearfix"> <mark class="hidden" data-comment-timestamp="1280933685"></mark> <div class="well"> <strong></strong> <div class="field field--name-comment-body field--type-text-long field--label-hidden field--item"><p>Promethius --- thanks so much for that thoughtful reply! It all makes a lot of sense. We already own the farm outright. (It's amazing how much land you can buy free and clear when you invest in swamp and drag on a free trailer. :-) ) So it sounds like maybe municipal bonds, increasing our farm's self-sufficiency, increasing our skill set, and working on that still my husband wants are top of the list. :-)</p> </div> <drupal-render-placeholder callback="comment.lazy_builders:renderLinks" arguments="0=1880083&amp;1=default&amp;2=en&amp;3=" token="NVEQ9DxTqAX7zb_JWMnbNJF9R5oy-vqKft4q-kF1eBA"></drupal-render-placeholder> </div> <footer> <em>By <a rel="nofollow" href="http://www.waldeneffect.org" lang="" typeof="schema:Person" property="schema:name" datatype="">Anna (not verified)</a> on 04 Aug 2010 <a href="https://scienceblogs.com/taxonomy/term/4838/feed#comment-1880083">#permalink</a></em> <article typeof="schema:Person" about="/user/0"> <div class="field field--name-user-picture field--type-image field--label-hidden field--item"> <a href="/user/0" hreflang="und"><img src="/files/styles/thumbnail/public/default_images/icon-user.png?itok=yQw_eG_q" width="100" height="100" alt="User Image" typeof="foaf:Image" class="img-responsive" /> </a> </div> </article> </footer> </article> <article data-comment-user-id="0" id="comment-1880084" class="js-comment comment-wrapper clearfix"> <mark class="hidden" data-comment-timestamp="1280985115"></mark> <div class="well"> <strong></strong> <div class="field field--name-comment-body field--type-text-long field--label-hidden field--item"><blockquote><p>Better off planting tobacco and building a still. If it gets that bad, your neighbors will be lined up to give you their gold. </p></blockquote> <p>That's always been part of my plan... But I can't quite decide whether selling bootleg whisky to the desperate is ethical.</p> </div> <drupal-render-placeholder callback="comment.lazy_builders:renderLinks" arguments="0=1880084&amp;1=default&amp;2=en&amp;3=" token="29F6lmcAEjKqq9MYpM6MfC2us1bTB1vmTAbq2XlkibA"></drupal-render-placeholder> </div> <footer> <em>By <span lang="" typeof="schema:Person" property="schema:name" datatype="">Dunc (not verified)</span> on 05 Aug 2010 <a href="https://scienceblogs.com/taxonomy/term/4838/feed#comment-1880084">#permalink</a></em> <article typeof="schema:Person" about="/user/0"> <div class="field field--name-user-picture field--type-image field--label-hidden field--item"> <a href="/user/0" hreflang="und"><img src="/files/styles/thumbnail/public/default_images/icon-user.png?itok=yQw_eG_q" width="100" height="100" alt="User Image" typeof="foaf:Image" class="img-responsive" /> </a> </div> </article> </footer> </article> <article data-comment-user-id="0" id="comment-1880085" class="js-comment comment-wrapper clearfix"> <mark class="hidden" data-comment-timestamp="1281003216"></mark> <div class="well"> <strong></strong> <div class="field field--name-comment-body field--type-text-long field--label-hidden field--item"><p>Prometh; "Better off planting tobacco and building a still. If it gets that bad, your neighbors will be lined up to give you their gold."</p> <p>"That's always been part of my plan... But I can't quite decide whether selling bootleg whisky to the desperate is ethical."<br /> Posted by: Dunc</p> <p>Ethics are going to be tricky. We may need to ask very different questions from those we're taught, and used to.</p> <p>For example; Dunc- what if EVERYONE is desperate? Which is quite likely?</p> <p>Something I joke about- and am not sure if I am/should- my backup plan is to open a brothel.</p> <p>Ok, now after you're done laughing...</p> <p>Are brothels going to disappear? Very no. They'll certainly get more common, as women become more desperate and law enforcement vanishes. And they'll get more consistently abusive, to boot. Take a good look at the stories coming out of Iraq and Afghanistan. Horrifying.</p> <p>So- would it be good; or bad; to open a brothel where the women are "protected", and good behavior is enforced?</p> <p>a); I'd make money; b) the women and their children would be "safer"; c) business would be taken from the more abusive places. d), we could sell lots of Dunc's bootleg whisky, making more money for both of us; e) the brothel would have a protected status; since the locals would not want it to disappear; making local security better...</p> <p>Am I joking? Frankly; I'm not entirely sure.</p> <p>Help me out, Sharon. :-)</p> </div> <drupal-render-placeholder callback="comment.lazy_builders:renderLinks" arguments="0=1880085&amp;1=default&amp;2=en&amp;3=" token="txj8Nwp-fPC1_d46LTlP66bvpGGZrwvMzzsA76HIs8s"></drupal-render-placeholder> </div> <footer> <em>By <a rel="nofollow" href="http://littlebloginthebigwoods.blogspot.com/" lang="" typeof="schema:Person" property="schema:name" datatype="">Greenpa (not verified)</a> on 05 Aug 2010 <a href="https://scienceblogs.com/taxonomy/term/4838/feed#comment-1880085">#permalink</a></em> <article typeof="schema:Person" about="/user/0"> <div class="field field--name-user-picture field--type-image field--label-hidden field--item"> <a href="/user/0" hreflang="und"><img src="/files/styles/thumbnail/public/default_images/icon-user.png?itok=yQw_eG_q" width="100" height="100" alt="User Image" typeof="foaf:Image" class="img-responsive" /> </a> </div> </article> </footer> </article> </section> <ul class="links inline list-inline"><li class="comment-forbidden"><a href="/user/login?destination=/casaubonsbook/2010/08/03/youve-still-got-at-least-until%23comment-form">Log in</a> to post comments</li></ul> Tue, 03 Aug 2010 07:26:16 +0000 sastyk 63437 at https://scienceblogs.com Why Is this Apocalypse Different than All Other Apocalypses? https://scienceblogs.com/casaubonsbook/2010/03/04/why-is-this-apocalypse-differe <span>Why Is this Apocalypse Different than All Other Apocalypses?</span> <div class="field field--name-body field--type-text-with-summary field--label-hidden field--item"><p><em>Note: This is another lightly revised version a piece I wrote some years ago at the oldest incarnation of this blog. It answers a question I get a lot - if people have been saying that the oil is going to run out for years, and if 30 years ago people thought we were going to have an ice age, why should I believe you that peak oil and climate change are real problems.</em></p> <p>A lot of what I write works from the assumption that we all agree that peak oil and climate change are happening and going to be life-changing events. And yet, some people who read this blog don't necessarily agree on this subject, or they don't see the effects has being as profound as I do, or perhaps the idea of peak oil or climate change is fairly new to them, and they don't know what to believe. So sometimes, we need to back up, and make the case for something that is always new to some people. The truth is that if my writing is to be anything other than preaching to the converted, we have to answer the skeptics.</p> <p>That's why I was so delighted when I got an email from Frazzlehead who asked me why this particular energy crisis was different than the one of the 1970s. She observed that she'd been reading 1970s back to the land texts, and finding the exact same narrative in them - that we're running out of oil, that soon the economy will crash and we'll need to go back to farming. Why, she asked, is it right this time?</p> <p><em>"I look at the date it was written and think, see? They've been saying this for ages - and it hasn't happened. Still, something in my gut tells me that it's different this time, that this isn't just a robot waving it's silly arms saying "Danger, Will Robinson, Danger! Danger!" ... that something really is wrong and things will change dramatically.<br /> What I can't quite put my finger on is the evidence for *this* time being the *real* time.<br /> Is the Boy just crying wolf again? Or is there really a wolf?<br /> Can you help me see why *this time* it is for real?"</em></p> <p>This is an extremely important question - the fact is, ever since the beginning of the 20th century, when we recognized we really can have "world" wars, since the advent of the military capacity to destroy the lives of billions, since we recognized our impact on the earth, we've been afraid we'd destroy it. How do we know that this time, we really are?<br /> Or, as I've argued, how do we know that we're doing enough harm that even if we don't actually achieve apocalypse, it isn't going to be fun.</p> <p>And of course, this is a good question for climate change as well. There's a small grain of truth in the oft-repeated claim that in the 1970s, climate scientists were predicting an ice age - only a small one but we need to look at that truth. The fact is, many people remember these predictions of the end of everything, and remember Y2K as well, and then think "the evidence is against those who say things are going to change - we've heard this before" This is a reasonable critique, and one that requires a good answer - or a series of them. That is, it isn't enough to say "Well, this time we're right."</p> <p>The reason we want multiple answers here is that there are several questions. The first one is this "What are the differences between the scientific and technical cases for peak oil now, and climate change now vs. then." But that's only part of the answer. Because most of us aren't climate scientists or petroleum geologists, and we're not going to read every single bit of information on this subject, so to some degree, we have to rely on our own analysis. We can weigh the credibility of the technical analyses to one degree or another, but we also need grounds for distinguishing between those analyses. The ideal grounds would be that we completely understand everything the scientists are saying, but since that's not true, we need another set of analytic tools.</p> <p>So the next question we have to answer is this - what present day evidence do we have for each case? How can I see this with my own eyes? And how do the various available accounts I'm being offered match up with both the scientific evidence and the evidence of my eyes? That is, both the "disasters are coming" and the "it'll never happen" crowds are telling stories - they are giving an account of the past and the future. Picking the right story depends on our being able to match up evidence with the narrative being provided to us.</p> <p>And while those two data points are convincing, they aren't everything we need to know to make a decision - we also need to ask ourselves how to apply an imperfect case for something. That is, assuming that very few things about the future can be known with absolute certainty, we need to know what the case for action is - that is, how should we use the information above? What tools of analysis will get us the best results?</p> <p>I'm going to go through these questions, one at a time, to the best of my ability. Because the subject is such a long one, this will appear in two parts.</p> <p>First, the technical analysis:</p> <p>First of all, what was the evidence for 1970s style depletion analyses? I'm going to admit here that I am somewhat handicapped on this question by having been born during the 1970s oil crisis - that is, I have no direct experience of the data that was coming in during that period - I was busy analyzing the comparative merits of growing up to be a garbage collector (cool truck) or a vet (cool puppies and kittens), and thus not paying much (any) attention to petroleum geology.</p> <p>That said, I've seen the same accounts Frazzlehead has, popular narratives in which we were "running out of oil" but I've seen far fewer scholarly accounts that make that same claim. This is not to say that there weren't any, just that they are much more difficult to find than people think.</p> <p>In fact, peak oil theory doesn't make the claim that "we're running out of oil" either, except in the sense that whenever you make any use of a non-renewable resource, you are reducing the amount that's left and contributing to the larger process of "running out." The peak of oil production occurs at the moment that we have used ½ of the oil in the ground. No peak oil scholar that I've ever seen has suggested that we are in immanent danger of having the world run out, but rather that demand (how much oil we'd like to burn) will exceed supply (the amount we can get out of the ground) at some point. Some consequences under the current system of this difference between demand and supply would be higher prices, spot shortages, poor people being priced out of the market altogether, and gradually more and more people being priced out or having their usage dramatically reduced. But that's not the same as actually running out.</p> <p>It is safe to say that if people in the 1970s were claiming that we were in immanent danger of running out, they were really, really deeply mistaken - and that that mistake can't be chalked up to improvements in science. But I suspect that most geologists weren't saying that - instead, they were saying something more complicated and nuanced, and, as is often the case, complicated, nuanced ideas got dumbed down to something less accurate but more exciting sounding.</p> <p>To get some evidence of this, let's look at _The Limits to Growth_ which was perhaps the single most famous text that said we were "running out of oil" in the 1970s. But, of course, that's not what it said at all. I'm going to quote here Richard Heinberg's analysis of TLTG, because I think he covers all the salient points:</p> <p><em>"Several economists have attempted to debunk the conclusions presented in LTG. For example, in _Eco-Scam: The False Prophets of Ecological Apocalypse_, Ronald Bailey wrote that "In 1972 The Limits to Growth predicted that at exponential growth rates, the world would run out of gold by 1981, mercury by 1985, tin by 1987, zinc by 1990, petroleum by 1992, and copper, lead and natural gas by 1993." _Facts Not Fears: A Parents Guide to Teaching Kids about the Environment_ by Michael Sanera and Jane S. Shaw repeated part of this list and pointed out that "The world did not run out of gold by 1981, or zinc by 1990, or petroleum by 1992, as the book predicted."</em></p> <p>However, these were not predictions contained in the book. The reference for these claim is Table 4...The table lists three sets of numbers: a static reserve index (how long known reserves would last at 1972 rates of consumption); an exponential reserve index (how long known reserves would last at an exponentially increasing rate of consumption); and an expontential index calculated using five times the known reserves (that is, assuming substantial new discoveries of the resources in question). Criticisms of LTG focused only on the second, 'exponential reserve' set of numbers which was the most pessimistic, even though the authors clearly stated that this did not constitute a prediction, but merely a statistical extrapolation." (Powerdown, 93-94)</p> <p>That is, critiques of _The Limits To Growth_ were made out of context. The authors knew that it was very, very unlikely that we would have massive growth of consumption without any new discoveries, and weren't proposing that would happen - they were providing context for their larger conclusion that we are at risk of overshoot.</p> <p>In fact, _The Limits To Growth_ was probably fairly accurate in their overall claims, as the updates have demonstrated. It is important to note that TLTG made the claim, to the extent it claimed things, rather than observed them, that collapse was likely to come not in the 1970s, but at the very end of the 20th or beginning of the 21st century.</p> <p>They claimed that *overshoot* - the point at which we were exceeding the capacity of the earth to sustain us would happen earlier than that - and in fact, there's compelling evidence they were right. But they never claimed that the crisis point would be reached at the same moment we reached overshoot - instead, they suggested otherwise. This is an important distinction. That is, TLTG emphasized how urgent it was that we begin to make policy and practical changes that would abate the crisis in the 1970s - that was the time to respond. But those policy changes were designed to avoid an outcome that would occur decades later - and there's a case to be made that some of them are, in fact, occurring decades later as predicted.</p> <p>Richard Heinberg at one point observed that he hasn't been able to find a single example of any peer reviewed paper predicting we were actually going to run out of oil in the 1970s - and yet, many people "knew" that this was the case. I don't know if that fact is still true - even if there are some, that doesn't mean they were right. But there certainly aren't a large number of them.</p> <p>What was true in the 1970s, is that *American* oil prediction hit its peak. In 1970, American production peaked, just as M.King Hubbert said it would. At the time, nearly everyone denied that Hubbert was right - after all, we'd just produced more oil than we ever had before - why would we expect shortfalls? Well, the reality is that that's just how it works - the peak is the point at which you produce more than you ever have - or ever will again. So America actually was experiencing serious oil shortfalls, and because of the OPEC embargo, was unable to meet demand.</p> <p>Looking through my collection of older back-to-the-land accounts, I see several of them claim that we can't depend on foreign oil. And that may be at the root of our belief that we thought we were running out in the 1970s - we believed that America would largely have to rely on its own oil supplies, which were patently inadequate to meet even 1970s demand. In that sense, we were "running out of oil" because we had ample evidence that we might not always be able to buy it, and our supply was inadequate. That politics changed, and the bottom dropped out of the oil price, giving OPEC incentives to keep our supply coming was a great result - but if the embargo had continued, we might genuinely have been "running out." And this is a good reminder that absolute oil supplies and political access to them are both relevant. </p> <p>That's an important point on peak oil - because access has as much effect as absolute reserves. So, for example, an oil crisis could arise because of our inability to increase imports, or because of structural failures in refining capacity that cause shortages before the absolute peak, or because of geopolitical issues. On the one hand, peak oil is a very simple idea. On the other, if you interpret the term to mean "the point at which supply can no longer meet demand" it gets very complicated. As we saw in 2008, for example, when oil price spiked, many oil producing nations cut exports, reserving oil for their populations while poor importing nations cut imports and experience shortages.</p> <p>In fact, the 1970s oil shocks offer a useful kind of support for the claims of peak oil in the present. The oil shocks were fundamentally political in nature, but they also offer proof of the fact that a. there are peaks, and b. such peaks are inherently disruptive. The reduction in available oil in the US after its peak left us in a tough spot, politically speaking, and vulnerable to supply constraints caused by outside forces. Several peak oil scholars have correlated regional peaks with periods of societal disruption - that is, when we experience substantial declines in resource access, it causes major problems.</p> <p>The same argument can be made about the frequently quoted claim that in the 1970s, scientists were predicting an ice age, and now they are predicting catastrophic warming. In fact, in the 1970s, there was some discussion of the possibility of a new ice age, for several reasons. The first is that in the 1970s, particulate emission pollution was so severe that it caused a considerable cooling of the planet. So it seemed possible that we were entering a cooling cycle.</p> <p>We were also statistically at the end of a period of climate stability, and the possibility that there might be an ice age was discussed. But even Richard Lindzen, one of the formest Global Warming skeptics, has admitted that this was never more than the equivalent of scientists batting an idea around. That is, there never was any strong scientific consensus that we were entering into a period of global cooling *and* most research on this subject was speaking only of natural cycles.</p> <p>For example, perhaps the most famous article on this subject appeared in Science in 1976, and included the phrase "in the absence of human perturbation of the climate." That is, the prediction that global cooling would occur was *explicitly* made with the caveat that if we mess with the climate this probably won't happen. But, as usual, the nuance was removed, and what we get is the idea that we once were really sure we were going to have global cooling.</p> <p>It is also very important to note that scientists *also* were predicting Global Warming well before the 1970s. A Swedish chemist named Arrhenius discovered and predicted global warming at the turn of the last century, documenting that it was already underway. Charles Keeling was doing work on Global Warming in the 1950s and 60s, and continued to do this work until his death in 2005. In 1979, as Jimmy Carter's Global 2000 report was being compiled, anthropogenic global warming was cited as one of the most serious problems of the century. So it would be more accurate to say that in the 1970s, there was considerable debate over whether warming or cooling would be the primary concern, and by the end of that decade, there was a growing consensus that global warming was far more likely.</p> <p>In both cases, one of the most important bits of evidence is the degree of scientific consensus - that is, the sheer number of scholars and researchers that agree that they are seeing evidence of something. Since these scientists will generally come at this issue from different directions - one person studying ice cores in the arctic, another sea level rises, one petroleum geologist studying future projections, another talking about the history of discovery. So while hardly infalliable, scientific consensus matters.</p> <p>And in both cases, we can claim that there is an enormous difference between scientific consensus now and scientific consensus then. For example, consensus on global warming is overwhelming. The oft-stated claim that there are no peer-reviewed scholarly articles that cast real doubt on the anthropogenic (human caused) nature of climate change is not quite true, but there are very few of them - a handful at best, mostly in minor journals, and compared to 10,000 and more such articles in peer reviewed scholarly journals that take the other position. There are a few real scholars (and a bunch of paid shills for the energy industry) who sincerely believe that climate change is not anthropogenic (there's no one who doesn't believe the climate is changing, btw), but the reality is that there are tiny, dissenting minorities on every scholarly community. </p> <p>It is still possible, for example, to find a few doctors who don't believe cigarettes cause cancer. It is still possible to find some historians who don't think the Holocaust ever happened. But these are few, and they don't change the fact that the overwhelming majority believe otherwise, and, more importantly, that the overwhelming majority of the evidence supports anthropogenic global warming.</p> <p>In regards to peak oil, the scientific consensus is actually harder to figure out. Every once in a while I run into someone who is a peak oil believer and a global warming skeptic, which I find quite funny. That is, the scientific evidence for global warming is so much greater than for immanent peak oil (which in no means implies that both are not true, merely that there is less certainty and less research in regards to peak oil) that it seems odd to me that one could evaluate the evidence for the less certain one, agree with it, and then dismiss the evidence for the other.</p> <p>But saying that there's more controversy in the study of peak oil that climate change is not to say that there is no scientific consensus on peak oil. In 2007, the General Accounting Office of the US Congress released a report that argued that a majority of relevant scholars and oil experts now believe that a peak has already happened or is immanent. There are still significant dissenting viewpoints - he IEA, for example, officially repudiates peak oil while simultaneously predicting year over year supply declines as high as 6% and seriously supply constraints into the 2040s. This amounts effectively to an acknowledgement of peak oil, since virtually no serious assessments put the peak that late - the US Geological Survey, for example, puts the world peak at 2023.</p> <p>The truth is that it is very hard to predict an oil peak, except in hindsight. At the 2006 ASPO (Association for the Study of Peak Oil) conference, I heard peak oil researchers give dates that ranged from 2012 or later to 2005 - so even the experts who do believe in peak oil are uncertain. Because there is no reliable reserve data on total available oil, we can only look at the history of our discoveries (that is, discoveries peaked in the 1960s - since then we've been finding a dramatically decreasing amount of new oil each year, despite all the people who hype each new discovery as the answer), how much of the globe has been mapped for oil (the vast majority) and estimate likelihoods. And also, we can do the math showing current rates of decline (most of the major producers are declining significantly), and look at how much oil we'd need to find in order to put off the problem. The answer is "a hell of a lot" - that is, as Matthew Simmons put it, even if we found a massive oil field, as big as the North Sea, for example, it would only delay the whole world's oil peak by a matter of months.</p> <p>The next question would be how well the predictions, model and data match up with what we're actually seeing right now. For example, in regards to peak oil, while we don't know with certainty whether or not the Saudi giant oil fields have actually peaked, we can look and see what is actually happening in the world. Some Saudi authorities claim that the peak is a long way out, others that it is very near (many oil company executives now openly admit peak oil). What we did see was that during the period of record high oil prices in 2008, the Saudis were unable to increase production as much as one would have expected, given the powerful incentive of $100+ oil - their claim was that they didn't want to, but this seems unlikely at best ;-). So far, peak oil theory best fits the facts.</p> <p>The same is true with climate change theory. For example, climate change dissenters often argue that the sun is sending more heat our way. But if that were true, we'd be seeing more warming in the upper atmosphere as well as closer to the earth. But in fact, the opposite is true - the upper atmosphere is cooler. Since the sun's rays have to go through the upper atmosphere to get to the earth, that's not consistent. But if the earth itself is trapping carbon and increasing heat, it would make sense that we would find the upper atmosphere cooler than the lower.</p> <p>The correlation of man-made C02 levels with planetary warming is another place we can see the evidence of global warming. The ice reductions in the arctic, and the thinning of the edges of the Greenland and Antarctic ice sheets are another.</p> <p>That is not to say that there is no inconsistency in climate systems - we are talking about a large, enormously complex system, being modeled by thousands of researchers. It is not an easy thing to figure out, and not every bit of data is going to be perfect. But the overwhelming reality is that the story here fits the data extremely well - the account of anthropogenic global warming fits what we are seeing - if anything, we have tended to underestimate our impact.</p> <p>We can also see the evidence of our own eyes in both cases - we can see the rise in food prices, gas prices, the warming of our regions, the changes in planting zones and snowfall, the increased frequence of drought. These are not sufficient evidence - any one year, any one locality can be explained. But there is no doubt that billions of people around the world are seeing these things, and that our vision is a small piece of the picture.</p> <p>Going back, for a moment, to _The Limits to Growth_, one of the things that appears a lot in later modeling, in, for example, the 30 Year Update of TLTG, is that feedback loops and intersections are a bigger problem than any individual problem. And for those people wondering whether these problems are really as bad as they think they are, this is probably the most important thing to know - in the 1970s, we were worried about individual problems - a shortage of oil, for example, or about pollution, or a coming ice age. Right now, the biggest concern we have is of the intersection of inter-related problems. That is, the problem is not our ability to respond to one problem, but our ability to respond to multiple, overwhelming simultaneous crises.</p> <p>_The Limits to Growth: The Thirty Year Update_ found that almost all its "business as usual" scenarios led to collapse , *EVEN IF* the sheer quantities of resources available were *DOUBLED* over what we have any evidence at all for - that is, even if we had enough energy to go along, pollution built and cancer rates skyrocketed, while soil erosion rose to make food production fail to keep pace with population growth. That is, these scenarios don't depend on a shortage or crisis in any single place - they operate as a system of feedback loops influencing one another. As the authors put it,</p> <p><em>"A second lesson is that the more successfully society puts off its limits through economic and technical adaptations, the more likely it is to run into several of them at the same time. In most World3 runs, including many we have not shown here, the world system does not totally run out of land or food or resources or pollution absorption capability. What it runs out of is the ability to cope." (TLG30, 223)</em></p> <p>In the 1970s, environmental activists were responding to the very first warning signs of depletion and climate change. Many of them interpreted scientific warnings on these points to mean that we were facing an immediate, definite crisis down to the particulars. But that's not what they were being told. Instead, people were being warned about the longer term consequences of their actions in no uncertain terms. And in fact, our ability to cope managed to push these issues off, in many cases for decades, but again, as we put our limits further off, we drew our resources down further. Soon, the bill comes due.</p> <p>Now this is all a fairly compelling case, but it isn't all the truth that ever was, and anyone who tells you otherwise is lying. That is, there is absolutely no point in exaggerating scientific evidence to pretend we know everything with perfect, utter certainty. So my next post will be about the question of how we use this data - that is, if we think the odds are strongly in favor of something, but we don't have perfect certainty, how do we know what to do? There are logical tools for that, and my next post on this subject will discuss them.</p> <p>Sharon</p> </div> <span><a title="View user profile." href="/author/sastyk" lang="" about="/author/sastyk" typeof="schema:Person" property="schema:name" datatype="">sastyk</a></span> <span>Thu, 03/04/2010 - 06:34</span> <div class="field field--name-field-blog-tags field--type-entity-reference field--label-inline"> <div class="field--label">Tags</div> <div class="field--items"> <div class="field--item"><a href="/tag/climate-change" hreflang="en">climate change</a></div> <div class="field--item"><a href="/tag/collapse" hreflang="en">collapse</a></div> <div class="field--item"><a href="/tag/peak-oil" hreflang="en">Peak Oil</a></div> <div class="field--item"><a href="/tag/apocalypse" hreflang="en">apocalypse</a></div> <div class="field--item"><a href="/tag/depletion" hreflang="en">depletion</a></div> <div class="field--item"><a href="/tag/peak-oil" hreflang="en">Peak Oil</a></div> </div> </div> <div class="field field--name-field-blog-categories field--type-entity-reference field--label-inline"> <div class="field--label">Categories</div> <div class="field--items"> <div class="field--item"><a href="/channel/environment" hreflang="en">Environment</a></div> </div> </div> <section> <article data-comment-user-id="0" id="comment-1877316" class="js-comment comment-wrapper clearfix"> <mark class="hidden" data-comment-timestamp="1267706532"></mark> <div class="well"> <strong></strong> <div class="field field--name-comment-body field--type-text-long field--label-hidden field--item"><p>I was in high school during the 1970's oil crisis in the U.S. It was, as you said, Peak Oil for U.S. extraction, combined with geopolitical factors. In addition, I have reason to think there was some market manipulation and price gouging on the part of the oil companies.<br /> We lived in the People's Republic of Berzerkley at the time, with a lovely view of San Francisco Bay from my mother's house; in addition I used to sail regularly on the bay. During the entire period of long gas lines, alternate day fueling and high prices, I noticed the anchored tankers in the Bay.<br /> In normal times, a few tankers would come in, moor to the refinery's piers at Richmond, and unload. Now there were over a dozen tankers, fully laden, out in the anchorages, and none unloading at the piers. It made me think that perhaps the oil companies were deliberately keeping oil off the market to drive prices up still further. Certainly U.S. oil companies got a lot of favourable concessions from the Feds after that, including drilling the North Slope and selling it over seas.</p> <p>Glenn</p> </div> <drupal-render-placeholder callback="comment.lazy_builders:renderLinks" arguments="0=1877316&amp;1=default&amp;2=en&amp;3=" token="I-woFmfSh7Z-G3aggGgdVqIGlcO5z3a77kxxZgRegFA"></drupal-render-placeholder> </div> <footer> <em>By <span lang="" typeof="schema:Person" property="schema:name" datatype="">Glenn (not verified)</span> on 04 Mar 2010 <a href="https://scienceblogs.com/taxonomy/term/4838/feed#comment-1877316">#permalink</a></em> <article typeof="schema:Person" about="/user/0"> <div class="field field--name-user-picture field--type-image field--label-hidden field--item"> <a href="/user/0" hreflang="und"><img src="/files/styles/thumbnail/public/default_images/icon-user.png?itok=yQw_eG_q" width="100" height="100" alt="User Image" typeof="foaf:Image" class="img-responsive" /> </a> </div> </article> </footer> </article> <article data-comment-user-id="0" id="comment-1877317" class="js-comment comment-wrapper clearfix"> <mark class="hidden" data-comment-timestamp="1267706836"></mark> <div class="well"> <strong></strong> <div class="field field--name-comment-body field--type-text-long field--label-hidden field--item"><p>"In the 1970s, environmental activists were responding to the very first warning signs of depletion and climate change."</p> <p>The "very first" warning signs of depletion and climate change occurred towards the end of the Pleistocene, as the world's megafauna - especially that of Australia &amp; the Americas - was hunted to extinction and the climate entered a glacial interstadial. The people of that time may not have recognized the signs but we certainly can in retrospect. To those accustomed to thinking in terms of ecological, evolutionary, and geological time, years and decades are irrelevant. Environmental degradation is occurring at a rate and magnitude that undermines the resource base of human civilization and survival of not just humans but a very significant proportion of the world's biotia. Whether the full impact of this degradation is felt within our lifetimes, the lifetimes of our children and grandchildren, or a few centuries down the line, is also irrelevant. The uncoupling of biogeochemical cycles, the collapse of ecosystems, and the mass extinction of species are all in process, whether the process is measured in years, decades, centuries, or a few millenia. In saying this I am not "exaggerating the scientific evidence" and I <i>do</i> say it with "perfect, utter certainty." The only uncertainty is the rate, to two or three orders of magnitude, at which collapse takes place. Over ecological or evolutionary time, these few orders are utterly insignificant. It will appear instantaneous in the fossil record.</p> </div> <drupal-render-placeholder callback="comment.lazy_builders:renderLinks" arguments="0=1877317&amp;1=default&amp;2=en&amp;3=" token="8S5BvgTz47a5EvDrgOxBOSHVd6_JjKDnEPZi4BA0fAo"></drupal-render-placeholder> </div> <footer> <em>By <span lang="" typeof="schema:Person" property="schema:name" datatype="">darwinsdog (not verified)</span> on 04 Mar 2010 <a href="https://scienceblogs.com/taxonomy/term/4838/feed#comment-1877317">#permalink</a></em> <article typeof="schema:Person" about="/user/0"> <div class="field field--name-user-picture field--type-image field--label-hidden field--item"> <a href="/user/0" hreflang="und"><img src="/files/styles/thumbnail/public/default_images/icon-user.png?itok=yQw_eG_q" width="100" height="100" alt="User Image" typeof="foaf:Image" class="img-responsive" /> </a> </div> </article> </footer> </article> <article data-comment-user-id="0" id="comment-1877318" class="js-comment comment-wrapper clearfix"> <mark class="hidden" data-comment-timestamp="1267707374"></mark> <div class="well"> <strong></strong> <div class="field field--name-comment-body field--type-text-long field--label-hidden field--item"><p>Great post. Thanks for being so clear and concise and (to me) unbiased.</p> </div> <drupal-render-placeholder callback="comment.lazy_builders:renderLinks" arguments="0=1877318&amp;1=default&amp;2=en&amp;3=" token="e4cgVhYvQp2pbD-HmALSlUQw1AyKm3_8jWXa7uWB7bU"></drupal-render-placeholder> </div> <footer> <em>By <span lang="" typeof="schema:Person" property="schema:name" datatype="">cass_m (not verified)</span> on 04 Mar 2010 <a href="https://scienceblogs.com/taxonomy/term/4838/feed#comment-1877318">#permalink</a></em> <article typeof="schema:Person" about="/user/0"> <div class="field field--name-user-picture field--type-image field--label-hidden field--item"> <a href="/user/0" hreflang="und"><img src="/files/styles/thumbnail/public/default_images/icon-user.png?itok=yQw_eG_q" width="100" height="100" alt="User Image" typeof="foaf:Image" class="img-responsive" /> </a> </div> </article> </footer> </article> <article data-comment-user-id="0" id="comment-1877319" class="js-comment comment-wrapper clearfix"> <mark class="hidden" data-comment-timestamp="1267708338"></mark> <div class="well"> <strong></strong> <div class="field field--name-comment-body field--type-text-long field--label-hidden field--item"><p>"The peak of oil production occurs at the moment that we have used ½ of the oil in the ground."</p> <p>Not necessarily, if I may quibble a bit. It could happen quite a bit earlier or later than the 1/2 mark. It's a question of the relative difficulty of extraction of oils in different locations. If, for instance the first 90% were easy to extract and the last 10% were difficult, peak oil might not occur until a much greater fraction of the total reserves were used.</p> <p>That's just being picky though, your overall point is fine.</p> </div> <drupal-render-placeholder callback="comment.lazy_builders:renderLinks" arguments="0=1877319&amp;1=default&amp;2=en&amp;3=" token="NBxNmlSBn5w7tGKSI-mnJRcKawnZZuzXHxT1-L3k7FQ"></drupal-render-placeholder> </div> <footer> <em>By <a rel="nofollow" href="http://scienceblogs.com/builtonfacts" lang="" typeof="schema:Person" property="schema:name" datatype="">Matt Springer (not verified)</a> on 04 Mar 2010 <a href="https://scienceblogs.com/taxonomy/term/4838/feed#comment-1877319">#permalink</a></em> <article typeof="schema:Person" about="/user/0"> <div class="field field--name-user-picture field--type-image field--label-hidden field--item"> <a href="/user/0" hreflang="und"><img src="/files/styles/thumbnail/public/default_images/icon-user.png?itok=yQw_eG_q" width="100" height="100" alt="User Image" typeof="foaf:Image" class="img-responsive" /> </a> </div> </article> </footer> </article> <article data-comment-user-id="0" id="comment-1877320" class="js-comment comment-wrapper clearfix"> <mark class="hidden" data-comment-timestamp="1267711965"></mark> <div class="well"> <strong></strong> <div class="field field--name-comment-body field--type-text-long field--label-hidden field--item"><p>I really enjoyed the article. Thanks. I have only one small point to make...</p> <p>There were several comments about what scientists believe. I think that it is important not to care what scientists believe. The fact that every scientist has beliefs does not cause any of those beliefs to be scientific. Everyone copes with a world that is very complex by developing personal beliefs. While it may be useful and even instructive to learn the beliefs of the people close to us, reading what someone thinks might be the belief of an individual scientist, or even a group of scientists, might be interesting, but should not be informative. Just because a scientist might or might not believe something does not make that something become 'scientific knowledge.' Not everything that a scientist does is science. The fact that a scientist believes this or that does not make that belief scientific.</p> <p>Science provides a method of interpreting data. It is scientific to learn about the data, and so is learning about how those data are being interpreted (what is the current hypothesis). For instance, nowadays it is probably true to say that most scientists who are familiar with the data subscribe to the hypothesis of global warming. Do they believe it? As a form of shorthand, some might answer, 'Yes.' However, were new information to be found that does not support it, a real scientist would be quick to embrace the new theory that explains the then current body of data. In science, any hypothesis is expendable. People seldom change their beliefs. </p> <p>Rather than examining the beliefs of scientists, it is more compelling to look and the data and try to understand the current theories. If we care about these issues it is really lazy-thinking to ask what so-and-so believes and be satisfied that that is all that needs to learned.</p> </div> <drupal-render-placeholder callback="comment.lazy_builders:renderLinks" arguments="0=1877320&amp;1=default&amp;2=en&amp;3=" token="Nq3-OnWqbg-AeQn5sYP7IhRZ6ChFsvxp25fQ_pwk6p4"></drupal-render-placeholder> </div> <footer> <em>By <a rel="nofollow" href="http://howesound.wordpress.com" lang="" typeof="schema:Person" property="schema:name" datatype="">Robert Ballantyne (not verified)</a> on 04 Mar 2010 <a href="https://scienceblogs.com/taxonomy/term/4838/feed#comment-1877320">#permalink</a></em> <article typeof="schema:Person" about="/user/0"> <div class="field field--name-user-picture field--type-image field--label-hidden field--item"> <a href="/user/0" hreflang="und"><img src="/files/styles/thumbnail/public/default_images/icon-user.png?itok=yQw_eG_q" width="100" height="100" alt="User Image" typeof="foaf:Image" class="img-responsive" /> </a> </div> </article> </footer> </article> <article data-comment-user-id="0" id="comment-1877321" class="js-comment comment-wrapper clearfix"> <mark class="hidden" data-comment-timestamp="1267714809"></mark> <div class="well"> <strong></strong> <div class="field field--name-comment-body field--type-text-long field--label-hidden field--item"><p>You may be interested in the article "Peak Oil as a Behavioral Problem" (Grant, 2007, <i>Behavior and Social Issues, 16, 1: pp 65-88</i>)</p> <p>From a behavioral perspective, this is an "avoidance" problem; we are working to prevent an aversive event. Problem is, although it is easy to teach avoidance by beginning with "escape" (working to be rid of a present aversive event), peak oil is a one-time phenomenon. We get no practice run. </p> <p>The article discusses a number of other characteristics of this particular apocalypse, from the standpoint of what we know, empirically, about how we learn. It is a very sobering prospect.</p> </div> <drupal-render-placeholder callback="comment.lazy_builders:renderLinks" arguments="0=1877321&amp;1=default&amp;2=en&amp;3=" token="6Z6SAssdVV-_JOr_sqfEeJYAvzAdeuVsj9nCMsfE_ms"></drupal-render-placeholder> </div> <footer> <em>By <span lang="" typeof="schema:Person" property="schema:name" datatype="">Anon (not verified)</span> on 04 Mar 2010 <a href="https://scienceblogs.com/taxonomy/term/4838/feed#comment-1877321">#permalink</a></em> <article typeof="schema:Person" about="/user/0"> <div class="field field--name-user-picture field--type-image field--label-hidden field--item"> <a href="/user/0" hreflang="und"><img src="/files/styles/thumbnail/public/default_images/icon-user.png?itok=yQw_eG_q" width="100" height="100" alt="User Image" typeof="foaf:Image" class="img-responsive" /> </a> </div> </article> </footer> </article> <article data-comment-user-id="0" id="comment-1877322" class="js-comment comment-wrapper clearfix"> <mark class="hidden" data-comment-timestamp="1267722739"></mark> <div class="well"> <strong></strong> <div class="field field--name-comment-body field--type-text-long field--label-hidden field--item"><p>HERE IS THE ANTITHESIS OF PEAK OIL THEORY BASED ON SUPPLY - OR RESERVES RUNNING OUT.</p> <p>Saudis fear A LACK OF DEMAND - read DEMAND!</p> <p>Saudi Arabia Preparing For Oil Demand To Peak</p> <p>By Tarek El Tablawy</p> <p>23 February, 2010<br /> Associated Press</p> <p>JEDDAH, Saudi Arabia, 15 February, 2010 â A top Saudi energy official expressed serious concern Monday that world oil demand could peak in the next decade and said his country was preparing for that eventuality by diversifying its economic base.</p> <p>Mohammed al-Sabban, lead climate talks negotiator, said the country with the world's largest proven reserves of conventional crude is working to become the top exporter of energy, including alternative forms such as solar power.</p> <p>Saudi Arabia was among the most vocal opponents of proposals during the climate change talks in Copenhagen. And al-Sabban criticized what he described as efforts by developed nations to adopt policies biased against oil producers through the imposition of taxes on refined petroleum products while offering huge subsidies for coal â a key industry for the United States.</p> <p>Al-Sabban said the potential that world oil demand had peaked, or would peak soon, was an "alarm that we need to take more seriously" as Saudi charts a course for greater economic diversification.</p> <p>"We cannot stay put and say 'well, this is something that will happen anyway," al-Sabban said at the Jeddah Economic Forum. The "world cannot wait for us before we are forced to adapt to the reality of lower and lower oil revenues," he added later.</p> <p>Some experts have argued that demand for oil, the chief export for Saudi Arabia and the vast majority of other Gulf Arab nations, has already peaked. Others say consumption will plateau soon, particularly in developed nations that are pushing for greater reliance on renewable energy sources.</p> <p>With oil demand only now starting to pick up after it was pummeled by the global recession, some analysts say consumers may have learned to live permanently with a lower level of consumption.</p> <p>The Organization of the Petroleum Exporting Countries, as well as other international energy organizations, is forecasting a slight rise in oil demand this year, based mainly on increased consumption in Asia after last year's sharp hit.</p> <p>Either peak oil scenario presents grave challenges for the Gulf region and OPEC, whose countries rely on oil sales for as much as 90 percent of their budgets.</p> <p>Al-Sabban, who also serves as the chief economic adviser to Saudi Oil Minister Ali Naimi, said an oil demand peak would be "very serious" for the country.</p> <p>Saudi has about 264 billion barrels of crude reserves and currently produces about 8 million barrels per day out of its overall output capacity of around 12 million barrels per day.</p> <p>The kingdom, widely seen as the de facto leader of the 12-member OPEC, has embraced an ambitious expenditure program aimed not only at further developing its oil base but also expanding and diversifying its economic base.</p> <p>Its expansionary policies came even as other nations were tightening purse strings in response to the world's worst financial crisis in over six decades. The outlays included billions of dollars for a new research university that opened last year, as well as major ventures such as the construction of new economic cities and other infrastructure.</p> <p>Oil's pre-recession price boom also helped pad Saudi Arabia's foreign reserves, now in excess of $400 billion, and have helped the government weather the worst of the global crisis.</p> <p>International ratings agency Moody's, in a reflection of the country's macroeconomic position, on Monday upgraded Saudi Arabia's foreign and local currency government ratings to Aa3 from A1 citing "the continued solid state of government finances which have largely withstood oil price volatility and the global economic crisis."</p> <p>Al-Sabban said that along with investing in education and economic diversification, Saudi must ensure that it become the top energy exporter, including in solar power, to keep moving forward.</p> <p>The country recently launched its first solar-powered desalination plant and al-Sabban said oil giant Saudi Aramco was working on a pilot project to inject carbon emissions back into wells to help boost output. The carbon sequestration project, which he said would be operational by 2012, was a sign of Saudi Arabia's commitment to environmentally sound energy development.</p> <p>The push for cleaner technology is pivotal for the oil rich kingdom.</p> </div> <drupal-render-placeholder callback="comment.lazy_builders:renderLinks" arguments="0=1877322&amp;1=default&amp;2=en&amp;3=" token="hoR6WxiLzzt5vWSVaKn-l1AmFkEnuyIVowfmenBHx2Y"></drupal-render-placeholder> </div> <footer> <em>By <span lang="" typeof="schema:Person" property="schema:name" datatype="">GERALD SPEZIO (not verified)</span> on 04 Mar 2010 <a href="https://scienceblogs.com/taxonomy/term/4838/feed#comment-1877322">#permalink</a></em> <article typeof="schema:Person" about="/user/0"> <div class="field field--name-user-picture field--type-image field--label-hidden field--item"> <a href="/user/0" hreflang="und"><img src="/files/styles/thumbnail/public/default_images/icon-user.png?itok=yQw_eG_q" width="100" height="100" alt="User Image" typeof="foaf:Image" class="img-responsive" /> </a> </div> </article> </footer> </article> <article data-comment-user-id="0" id="comment-1877323" class="js-comment comment-wrapper clearfix"> <mark class="hidden" data-comment-timestamp="1267725029"></mark> <div class="well"> <strong></strong> <div class="field field--name-comment-body field--type-text-long field--label-hidden field--item"><p>Only a few climate scientists promulgated the "earth is freezing" view in the 70s although it got big NEWSWEEK play. The vast majority of climate scientists at the time were already talking climate warming, not icing.</p> </div> <drupal-render-placeholder callback="comment.lazy_builders:renderLinks" arguments="0=1877323&amp;1=default&amp;2=en&amp;3=" token="7CdK9U8A3etCZQOHWTvUu8OrFGyQ84j_37AuxTheIq0"></drupal-render-placeholder> </div> <footer> <em>By <span lang="" typeof="schema:Person" property="schema:name" datatype="">mike (not verified)</span> on 04 Mar 2010 <a href="https://scienceblogs.com/taxonomy/term/4838/feed#comment-1877323">#permalink</a></em> <article typeof="schema:Person" about="/user/0"> <div class="field field--name-user-picture field--type-image field--label-hidden field--item"> <a href="/user/0" hreflang="und"><img src="/files/styles/thumbnail/public/default_images/icon-user.png?itok=yQw_eG_q" width="100" height="100" alt="User Image" typeof="foaf:Image" class="img-responsive" /> </a> </div> </article> </footer> </article> <article data-comment-user-id="0" id="comment-1877324" class="js-comment comment-wrapper clearfix"> <mark class="hidden" data-comment-timestamp="1267736701"></mark> <div class="well"> <strong></strong> <div class="field field--name-comment-body field--type-text-long field--label-hidden field--item"><p><i>Whether the full impact of this degradation is felt within our lifetimes, the lifetimes of our children and grandchildren, or a few centuries down the line, is also irrelevant.</i></p> <p>It's totally relevant to the people involved. It's also totally relevant to how much time people have to try to mitigate and if possible reverse the effects.</p> </div> <drupal-render-placeholder callback="comment.lazy_builders:renderLinks" arguments="0=1877324&amp;1=default&amp;2=en&amp;3=" token="7ThH_44LNXEpaJl7unk3Wx5eO-nD3AJDC_mh5i37PM4"></drupal-render-placeholder> </div> <footer> <em>By <a rel="nofollow" href="http://rpsg73.blogspot.com" lang="" typeof="schema:Person" property="schema:name" datatype="">Paul (not verified)</a> on 04 Mar 2010 <a href="https://scienceblogs.com/taxonomy/term/4838/feed#comment-1877324">#permalink</a></em> <article typeof="schema:Person" about="/user/0"> <div class="field field--name-user-picture field--type-image field--label-hidden field--item"> <a href="/user/0" hreflang="und"><img src="/files/styles/thumbnail/public/default_images/icon-user.png?itok=yQw_eG_q" width="100" height="100" alt="User Image" typeof="foaf:Image" class="img-responsive" /> </a> </div> </article> </footer> </article> <article data-comment-user-id="0" id="comment-1877325" class="js-comment comment-wrapper clearfix"> <mark class="hidden" data-comment-timestamp="1267744054"></mark> <div class="well"> <strong></strong> <div class="field field--name-comment-body field--type-text-long field--label-hidden field--item"><p>@GERALD SPEZIO</p> <p>Of course the Saudis fear a lack of demand. That is perfectly consistent with supply based peak oil theory. Prices spike = recession. Demand in foreign developed countries drops. Less revenue and significantly less profits, because their subsidized domestic market continues to grow, cannibalizing their export market. When the global economy slightly recovers, their lucrative export market has decreased and their unprofitable domestic market has increased. Less revenue, less profits. So either they can raise domestic prices (or ease subsidies) -- but that would cause riots -- or they can panic about ways to diversify their economy. That is entirely consistent with supply limited peak oil. It is actually one of the geopolitical issues that underpins the risk to the US: we have "better" companies, better technologies, better employees, and better industry practices, but we might not have geopolitical access to those resources. And even if we did, building the infrastructure to export it back to the US might be too uneconomical to justify the investment, so it has to be sold on the world market and can't be counted on for our supply. At some point, domestic markets will cannibalize their entire export market, which will completely destabilize those regions. Without a diverse economy, they are likely more toast than us; it just might not feel like as far as a crash for most of them.</p> </div> <drupal-render-placeholder callback="comment.lazy_builders:renderLinks" arguments="0=1877325&amp;1=default&amp;2=en&amp;3=" token="Nc3sUuVVtZ72ig-LfIbnIZOm4B942QmJNAjFMYRwaHE"></drupal-render-placeholder> </div> <footer> <em>By <span lang="" typeof="schema:Person" property="schema:name" datatype="">Jonsi (not verified)</span> on 04 Mar 2010 <a href="https://scienceblogs.com/taxonomy/term/4838/feed#comment-1877325">#permalink</a></em> <article typeof="schema:Person" about="/user/0"> <div class="field field--name-user-picture field--type-image field--label-hidden field--item"> <a href="/user/0" hreflang="und"><img src="/files/styles/thumbnail/public/default_images/icon-user.png?itok=yQw_eG_q" width="100" height="100" alt="User Image" typeof="foaf:Image" class="img-responsive" /> </a> </div> </article> </footer> </article> <article data-comment-user-id="0" id="comment-1877326" class="js-comment comment-wrapper clearfix"> <mark class="hidden" data-comment-timestamp="1267765052"></mark> <div class="well"> <strong></strong> <div class="field field--name-comment-body field--type-text-long field--label-hidden field--item"><blockquote><p>I look at the date it was written and think, see? They've been saying this for ages - and it hasn't happened.</p></blockquote> <p>I think this is the real crux of the problem - 30 years isn't really a long time at all. It's a mere third (or so) of a human lifetime. So many people seem to have an absurdly foreshortened view of history...</p> </div> <drupal-render-placeholder callback="comment.lazy_builders:renderLinks" arguments="0=1877326&amp;1=default&amp;2=en&amp;3=" token="jxXbQNrEyaYlgByuisiOVdBK2TALgWUkNNUkpA3iWVg"></drupal-render-placeholder> </div> <footer> <em>By <span lang="" typeof="schema:Person" property="schema:name" datatype="">Dunc (not verified)</span> on 04 Mar 2010 <a href="https://scienceblogs.com/taxonomy/term/4838/feed#comment-1877326">#permalink</a></em> <article typeof="schema:Person" about="/user/0"> <div class="field field--name-user-picture field--type-image field--label-hidden field--item"> <a href="/user/0" hreflang="und"><img src="/files/styles/thumbnail/public/default_images/icon-user.png?itok=yQw_eG_q" width="100" height="100" alt="User Image" typeof="foaf:Image" class="img-responsive" /> </a> </div> </article> </footer> </article> <article data-comment-user-id="0" id="comment-1877327" class="js-comment comment-wrapper clearfix"> <mark class="hidden" data-comment-timestamp="1267784527"></mark> <div class="well"> <strong></strong> <div class="field field--name-comment-body field--type-text-long field--label-hidden field--item"><p><i>It's totally relevant to the people involved. It's also totally relevant to how much time people have to try to mitigate and if possible reverse the effects.</i></p> <p>I'm involved and I say that the exact timing is totally irrelevant. Don't deign to speak for anyone but yourself, Paul.</p> <p>There's nothing that can be done to mitigate the consequences of anthropogenic mass extinction. Positive feedbacks have long since been triggered and it isn't humanly possible to reverse them, especially not with orbital forcing potentiating climatic warming due to the anthropogenic emission oh high heat capacity gasses. You may as well attempt to "mitigate" your own mortality as try to avert the situation the biosphere faces.</p> </div> <drupal-render-placeholder callback="comment.lazy_builders:renderLinks" arguments="0=1877327&amp;1=default&amp;2=en&amp;3=" token="Nh0jSeLXCyqnXtdFouNihV1yn0myHtE92CAoVZJqqns"></drupal-render-placeholder> </div> <footer> <em>By <span lang="" typeof="schema:Person" property="schema:name" datatype="">darwinsdog (not verified)</span> on 05 Mar 2010 <a href="https://scienceblogs.com/taxonomy/term/4838/feed#comment-1877327">#permalink</a></em> <article typeof="schema:Person" about="/user/0"> <div class="field field--name-user-picture field--type-image field--label-hidden field--item"> <a href="/user/0" hreflang="und"><img src="/files/styles/thumbnail/public/default_images/icon-user.png?itok=yQw_eG_q" width="100" height="100" alt="User Image" typeof="foaf:Image" class="img-responsive" /> </a> </div> </article> </footer> </article> <article data-comment-user-id="0" id="comment-1877328" class="js-comment comment-wrapper clearfix"> <mark class="hidden" data-comment-timestamp="1267805564"></mark> <div class="well"> <strong></strong> <div class="field field--name-comment-body field--type-text-long field--label-hidden field--item"><p>Is there a membrane for CO2 the way there is for salt in water? If so - can that be used to capture CO2.</p> <p>And if it can't - what about creating charcoal from organic matter? Plants capture CO2 as part of living, when the volatiles are burned out of the plants - we're just left with relatively inert charcoal. This can be mixed with various microbes and nutrients to create terra preta or it can be buried; either way, carbon is out of the atmospheric carbon cycle and thus can't contribute to AGW.</p> <p>If we can revamp agricultural processes to convert decomposable matter to inert carbon - we'll come out ahead on things.</p> </div> <drupal-render-placeholder callback="comment.lazy_builders:renderLinks" arguments="0=1877328&amp;1=default&amp;2=en&amp;3=" token="3n7U33wWduWCN5dDiz-2ozRe8_fZOdkwNw9V2cHV-Pw"></drupal-render-placeholder> </div> <footer> <em>By <span lang="" typeof="schema:Person" property="schema:name" datatype="">Eric (not verified)</span> on 05 Mar 2010 <a href="https://scienceblogs.com/taxonomy/term/4838/feed#comment-1877328">#permalink</a></em> <article typeof="schema:Person" about="/user/0"> <div class="field field--name-user-picture field--type-image field--label-hidden field--item"> <a href="/user/0" hreflang="und"><img src="/files/styles/thumbnail/public/default_images/icon-user.png?itok=yQw_eG_q" width="100" height="100" alt="User Image" typeof="foaf:Image" class="img-responsive" /> </a> </div> </article> </footer> </article> <article data-comment-user-id="0" id="comment-1877329" class="js-comment comment-wrapper clearfix"> <mark class="hidden" data-comment-timestamp="1267916784"></mark> <div class="well"> <strong></strong> <div class="field field--name-comment-body field--type-text-long field--label-hidden field--item"><p>@Sharon: A very interesting post. Very informative. Please, keep making others.</p> </div> <drupal-render-placeholder callback="comment.lazy_builders:renderLinks" arguments="0=1877329&amp;1=default&amp;2=en&amp;3=" token="ovJ8LVpCzpgGFITFOBL5BeCOi-ZwL4ifSG_4wwwGW6o"></drupal-render-placeholder> </div> <footer> <em>By <span lang="" typeof="schema:Person" property="schema:name" datatype="">Alex (not verified)</span> on 06 Mar 2010 <a href="https://scienceblogs.com/taxonomy/term/4838/feed#comment-1877329">#permalink</a></em> <article typeof="schema:Person" about="/user/0"> <div class="field field--name-user-picture field--type-image field--label-hidden field--item"> <a href="/user/0" hreflang="und"><img src="/files/styles/thumbnail/public/default_images/icon-user.png?itok=yQw_eG_q" width="100" height="100" alt="User Image" typeof="foaf:Image" class="img-responsive" /> </a> </div> </article> </footer> </article> <article data-comment-user-id="0" id="comment-1877330" class="js-comment comment-wrapper clearfix"> <mark class="hidden" data-comment-timestamp="1267950304"></mark> <div class="well"> <strong></strong> <div class="field field--name-comment-body field--type-text-long field--label-hidden field--item"><p>Sharon:</p> <p>What I would be interested in hearing addressed is why you think "peak oil" poses a crisis for our economic system of the same magnitude as climate change.</p> <p>As an economist, my perspective would be that peak oil is a problem that can be dealt with in a decentralized competitive economy via changes in oil prices. If there is a shortage of oil, the price goes up, which induces a great deal of behavioral changes with respect to both oil supply and demand. Prices would appear to provide the right signals. And the evidence suggests that long-run demand and supply will adjust extensively to price changes, if those price changes are large enough.</p> <p>In contrast, climate change is a clear case in which the global warming effects of CO2 emissions are unpriced damages from various economic activities. There is no way a decentralized price system without some government intervention can deal with that problem. The economy will only be able to adequately deal with this problem if there is some government intervention such as cap and trade, a tax on CO2 emissions, or government regulations to control CO2 emissions. This government intervention forces the damages from CO2 emissions to be appropriately priced, which they will not be in a competitive economy without policy intervention.</p> <p>In sum, from an economist's perspective, peak oil and climate change are two completely different types of problems. In the peak oil case, the price signals seem likely to be right even without government intervention, whereas in the climate change case, government intervention is required to get the prices right.</p> </div> <drupal-render-placeholder callback="comment.lazy_builders:renderLinks" arguments="0=1877330&amp;1=default&amp;2=en&amp;3=" token="FacPH5zy1nbJfB_Ip3G2HplKt7eX1Q9BPTYs-4RpXr0"></drupal-render-placeholder> </div> <footer> <em>By <span lang="" typeof="schema:Person" property="schema:name" datatype="">Tim Bartik (not verified)</span> on 07 Mar 2010 <a href="https://scienceblogs.com/taxonomy/term/4838/feed#comment-1877330">#permalink</a></em> <article typeof="schema:Person" about="/user/0"> <div class="field field--name-user-picture field--type-image field--label-hidden field--item"> <a href="/user/0" hreflang="und"><img src="/files/styles/thumbnail/public/default_images/icon-user.png?itok=yQw_eG_q" width="100" height="100" alt="User Image" typeof="foaf:Image" class="img-responsive" /> </a> </div> </article> </footer> </article> <article data-comment-user-id="0" id="comment-1877331" class="js-comment comment-wrapper clearfix"> <mark class="hidden" data-comment-timestamp="1268001309"></mark> <div class="well"> <strong></strong> <div class="field field--name-comment-body field--type-text-long field--label-hidden field--item"><p>@Gerald Spezio #7:<br /> Pasting a whole AP article into a blog comment is rude and probably violates copyright. In general, you should quote a few sentences or give a brief synopsis to let people know why they should read and then give a link to the original source of the story. Sharon, you may not want to leave a whole AP story in a comment on your blog.</p> </div> <drupal-render-placeholder callback="comment.lazy_builders:renderLinks" arguments="0=1877331&amp;1=default&amp;2=en&amp;3=" token="rXXm74fLIvC32XktKaDFEZXwQeS8Q8x4UnqmCo2PUeM"></drupal-render-placeholder> </div> <footer> <em>By <a rel="nofollow" href="http://www.scienceblogs.com/thusspakezuska" lang="" typeof="schema:Person" property="schema:name" datatype="">Zuska (not verified)</a> on 07 Mar 2010 <a href="https://scienceblogs.com/taxonomy/term/4838/feed#comment-1877331">#permalink</a></em> <article typeof="schema:Person" about="/user/0"> <div class="field field--name-user-picture field--type-image field--label-hidden field--item"> <a href="/user/0" hreflang="und"><img src="/files/styles/thumbnail/public/default_images/icon-user.png?itok=yQw_eG_q" width="100" height="100" alt="User Image" typeof="foaf:Image" class="img-responsive" /> </a> </div> </article> </footer> </article> <article data-comment-user-id="78" id="comment-1877332" class="js-comment comment-wrapper clearfix"> <mark class="hidden" data-comment-timestamp="1268149278"></mark> <div class="well"> <strong></strong> <div class="field field--name-comment-body field--type-text-long field--label-hidden field--item"><p>Tim, that's a question with a longer answer than I can deal with in comments or while in transit and between engagements. Would you mind if I address it in a post in the next few weeks? The short answer is that were we having this conversation in 1979, your description of the energy depletion issue might well be quite accurate, but time is a factor. The US DOE commissioned the Hirsch Report to answer just this question, and its suggestion was that for a stable transition we needed two decades before the expected price volatility and other elements emerged - but there's some evidence they are here now. </p> <p>But that's by no means a complete answer - more soon.</p> <p>Sharon</p> </div> <drupal-render-placeholder callback="comment.lazy_builders:renderLinks" arguments="0=1877332&amp;1=default&amp;2=en&amp;3=" token="CxUa62tpiAjOVY6NstDcGhGTwRj7zVP81ewKWBhzBjA"></drupal-render-placeholder> </div> <footer> <em>By <a title="View user profile." href="/author/sastyk" lang="" about="/author/sastyk" typeof="schema:Person" property="schema:name" datatype="">sastyk</a> on 09 Mar 2010 <a href="https://scienceblogs.com/taxonomy/term/4838/feed#comment-1877332">#permalink</a></em> <article typeof="schema:Person" about="/author/sastyk"> <div class="field field--name-user-picture field--type-image field--label-hidden field--item"> <a href="/author/sastyk" hreflang="en"><img src="/files/styles/thumbnail/public/default_images/icon-user.png?itok=yQw_eG_q" width="100" height="100" alt="User Image" typeof="foaf:Image" class="img-responsive" /> </a> </div> </article> </footer> </article> <article data-comment-user-id="0" id="comment-1877333" class="js-comment comment-wrapper clearfix"> <mark class="hidden" data-comment-timestamp="1268236255"></mark> <div class="well"> <strong></strong> <div class="field field--name-comment-body field--type-text-long field--label-hidden field--item"><p>In contrast, climate change is a clear case in which the global warming effects of CO2 emissions are unpriced damages from various economic activities.</p> </div> <drupal-render-placeholder callback="comment.lazy_builders:renderLinks" arguments="0=1877333&amp;1=default&amp;2=en&amp;3=" token="zyeevwuqRBo9plEKy_xVY4wMk8m5mxRBU30UAyBfE3M"></drupal-render-placeholder> </div> <footer> <em>By <a rel="nofollow" href="http://www.orjinagrikremi.gen.tr" lang="" typeof="schema:Person" property="schema:name" datatype="">orjin (not verified)</a> on 10 Mar 2010 <a href="https://scienceblogs.com/taxonomy/term/4838/feed#comment-1877333">#permalink</a></em> <article typeof="schema:Person" about="/user/0"> <div class="field field--name-user-picture field--type-image field--label-hidden field--item"> <a href="/user/0" hreflang="und"><img src="/files/styles/thumbnail/public/default_images/icon-user.png?itok=yQw_eG_q" width="100" height="100" alt="User Image" typeof="foaf:Image" class="img-responsive" /> </a> </div> </article> </footer> </article> </section> <ul class="links inline list-inline"><li class="comment-forbidden"><a href="/user/login?destination=/casaubonsbook/2010/03/04/why-is-this-apocalypse-differe%23comment-form">Log in</a> to post comments</li></ul> Thu, 04 Mar 2010 11:34:57 +0000 sastyk 63300 at https://scienceblogs.com Sunday Night Movie: End of Earth https://scienceblogs.com/myrmecos/2009/01/11/sunday-night-movie-end-of-earth <span>Sunday Night Movie: End of Earth</span> <div class="field field--name-body field--type-text-with-summary field--label-hidden field--item"><object width="425" height="344"><param name="movie" value="http://www.youtube.com/v/oB3G0rvCIJc&amp;fs=1" /><param name="allowFullScreen" value="true" /><param name="allowscriptaccess" value="always" /><embed src="http://www.youtube.com/v/oB3G0rvCIJc&amp;fs=1" type="application/x-shockwave-flash" allowscriptaccess="always" allowfullscreen="true" width="425" height="344"></embed></object><p> Apparently, the world ends in a stream of Japanese narration.</p> </div> <span><a title="View user profile." href="/author/awild" lang="" about="/author/awild" typeof="schema:Person" property="schema:name" datatype="">awild</a></span> <span>Sun, 01/11/2009 - 14:20</span> <div class="field field--name-field-blog-tags field--type-entity-reference field--label-inline"> <div class="field--label">Tags</div> <div class="field--items"> <div class="field--item"><a href="/tag/fun" hreflang="en">fun</a></div> <div class="field--item"><a href="/tag/animation" hreflang="en">Animation</a></div> <div class="field--item"><a href="/tag/apocalypse" hreflang="en">apocalypse</a></div> <div class="field--item"><a href="/tag/asteroids" hreflang="en">asteroids</a></div> <div class="field--item"><a href="/tag/fun" hreflang="en">fun</a></div> </div> </div> <section> </section> <ul class="links inline list-inline"><li class="comment-forbidden"><a href="/user/login?destination=/myrmecos/2009/01/11/sunday-night-movie-end-of-earth%23comment-form">Log in</a> to post comments</li></ul> Sun, 11 Jan 2009 19:20:36 +0000 awild 131305 at https://scienceblogs.com