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Messages - sidd

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The rest / Re: Empire - America and the future
« on: Today at 07:07:17 AM »
Engdahl points to tilt to the East by some of Europe:


The rest / Re: Empire - America and the future
« on: Today at 01:42:04 AM »
Are we reading the same article?

1) In the only mention of ISIS:

"ISIS quite definitely is an enemy of the West and must be destroyed. But its destruction will do little to address the factors that led to the rise of it, al-Qaeda, and other extremist groups in the first place. "

Where do you see Bacevich mention lineage from Al Quaeda to ISIS ? I happen to think the two are quite distinct, but that is another discussion.

2) Putin is mentioned three times

a) The first sentence is

"So too does the threat inflation that, for example, finds various commentators depicting the Islamic State or Vladimir Putin’s Russia as existential dangers. "

I read that as stating that Putin's Russia is an inflated threat, not an existential danger.

b) The second is:

"Putin is not a “friend” of the West and never will be."

Here i agree with you there is a problem with Bacevich's formulation. To begin with, a more careful definition of of "The West" would be nice.

c) The last mention is:

"Yet the onward expansion of NATO has been a needless provocation that plays directly into his hands, reviving among Russians nationalist sentiments that Putin exploits."

I see no problem with that statement.


Policy and solutions / Re: Coal
« on: May 28, 2017, 07:50:16 AM »
I cant believe this guy. Hopefully the Supremes will refuse to hear the appeal.


Consequences / Re: Places becoming less livable
« on: May 28, 2017, 07:22:35 AM »
I wonder that anyone trusts the rating companies after the big oops in 2008.

"Laskey, of Fitch, was skeptical that rating companies could or should account for climate risk in municipal ratings.

"We’re not emergency-preparedness experts," she said in a phone interview. "Unless we see reason to think, ‘Oh, they’re not paying attention,’ we assume that they’re competent, and they’re doing what they need to do in terms of preparedness."

The people who buy those bonds are so screwed. The banks are playing both sides of the game. "The Big Short" is an indispensable movie to understand how the banks set up deals to fail, and bet on them failing.


Walking the walk / Re: Sourcing solar panels and batteries
« on: May 28, 2017, 07:11:40 AM »
I'm afraid that paper by Chevallerau is quite weak. Rather look at,256.msg110079.html#msg110079

and the discussion following, which includes reference to a nice paper by Budischak and another by MacDonald, the latter of which eliminates storage in favor of renewable overbuild and extra grid.

One of the few points i agree with  Chevallerau is that the last bit of storage is the most expensive. But that is tautology, exactly as much storage will be built as satisfies marginal cost. And I note that battery cost is already low enuf in parts of Australia to completely disconnect from the grid, and that is coming soon elsewhere.  Utilities will wind up with hugely overbuilt distribution and transmission legacy cost as their residential customer base evaporates, and will have to be bailed out by the government.


The rest / Re: Empire - America and the future
« on: May 28, 2017, 02:38:33 AM »
Another good article by Bacevich about two of the people who sold the Cold War. And their acolytes Paul Wolfowitz, Richard Perle, Zalmay Khalilzad.


That withdrawal from the lawsuit by the American Petroleum Institute (API) and the National Association of Manufacturers (NAM), prominent trade groups and the American Fuel & Petrochemical Manufacturers (AFPM) is interesting. NAM are dinosaurs and they probably believe Jesus rode one. API is geologists, who are reluctantly coming around to the truth. AFPM is closer to NAM, but no so outright crazy.

"One issue for the industry groups is that laying out in court the scientific findings they accept on climate change could bind them to specific positions in other legal proceedings."

Heeheehee. Confusion to our enemies. I'll drink to that.


Consequences / Re: Qué se ficieron ?
« on: May 27, 2017, 07:57:40 AM »

Policy and solutions / Re: Oil and Gas Issues
« on: May 27, 2017, 06:32:15 AM »
And who owns that debt ?

That is an interesting affair, especially if you look at third world debt over the decades. For example, right now Sri Lanka is paying 95% of revenue in debt sevice.

That is the wealth pump that has enriched the occident at the expense of the orient and the global south for some four centuries.

Unfortunately that wealth pump is faltering, and worse, being diverted to China. As a result the Occident suffers. Hence Trump and Brexit. No money for bread and circuses, the plebes revolt.

I would post this in the Empire thread, except oil and gas have a very large part to play in the debt game.


Re: "  ... happy with the way things went in 2009 to early 2011 ... "

I am definitely not happy. No torturer or thieving banker was even tried, much less jailed except for a handful of flunkies. Most of the worst were elevated to greater power. That period really exposed the naked plutocrat bones of the system and fuelled Occupy.

Some of us remember. But that is more appropriate for the memory thread at "Que se ficieron"


The rest / Re: Wildlife
« on: May 26, 2017, 09:40:28 PM »
This made me feel very bad: poachers are using scientific research to find, capture or kill endangered species

paper at doi:10.1126/science.aan1362

"Poaching has been documented in species within months of their taxonomic description in journals (4). For example, more than 20 newly described reptile species have been targeted in this way, potentially leading to extinction in the wild."

Must we humans eat all the world ?


Policy and solutions / Re: Nuclear Power
« on: May 26, 2017, 09:33:30 PM »
A compendium of nuke links:

Westinghouse locks out union at reactor parts factory, borrows 800million as debtor in possesion bankruptcy:

Exelon nukes fail to clear auction:

detail at

That last link is full of juicy bits.

A new paper on NRC regulatory capture, and underestimation of fuelpond fire risk:

paper at doi:10.1126/science.aal4890

" ... NRC cost-benefit analysis—unreasonably, in our view—excluded accident consequences beyond 50 miles and underestimated consequences in a number of other ways (4). In response to a petition by the state of New York, the NRC acknowledged that its assumption in such calculations, that virtually all the relocated population could return home within less than a year, was inconsistent with the experience in Japan, where some of the relocated population is just beginning to return after 6 years (8)."

"This is the well-known phenomenon of “regulatory capture.” Former U.S. Senator Pete Domenici described how he curbed the NRC’s regulatory reach by threatening to cut its budget by one-third."

"If a spent fuel–pool fire were to occur, however, under the Price-Anderson Act of 1957, the nuclear industry would be liable only for damages up to $13.6 billion, leaving the public to deal with damages exceeding that amount (15). A fire in a dense-packed fuel pool could cause trillions of dollars in damages (9)."

And Trump appoints people to the NRC just in time to keep quorum:


Greenland and Arctic Circle / Re: What's new in Greenland?
« on: May 26, 2017, 07:56:51 PM »
Fascinating soliton in ice stream going down Rink. May be associated with hi-melt summers. Requires only one bedrock GPS station time series (and some orbiting satellites ...).  The authors clearly share some of Saruman's [1] traits. Wonder if such events can be teased out by ground GPS around Jacobshawn.

Very pretty paper. Read all about it:

open access  doi:10.1002/2017GL073478

I attach Fig 3c), 3d) and S11

The captions for 3c) and d) are

"(c) Pattern of mass deficit transiting the Rink Glacier during 2012 summer. About − 7.1 m of monthly thinning over the optimal domain (blue fill within the glacier trunk outlined by white line) is required to explain the mean monthly displacement (red arrow). Plotted are also the magnitudes and fulcrum positions of monthly mass anomalies (circles) that satisfy the measured monthly displacements (arrows). Notice the down glacier propagation of (negative) mass anomaly that represents the negative phase of mass transport wave. Mean monthly SMB loads are shown in the background. (d) Same as Figure 3c but for the fall/midwinter season that follows. It requires about 2.8 m of monthly thickening over the optimal domain (red fill within the glacier trunk) to explain the mean monthly displacement (blue arrow)."

The caption for S11 is in the image


[1] "His knowledge was deep, his thought was subtle, and his hands marvellously skilled ... " Tolkien, Lord of the Rings, v III, Ch. X, 1954

The rest / Re: The Trump Presidency (was "Presidential Poll")
« on: May 26, 2017, 07:22:27 AM »
Bob Woodward of Watergate fame thinks that Trump will serve his full term:

" ... odds are, he's probably going to be president for a full term, four years ... "

Dunno if i agree. The guy might get bored and quit, he's got the attention span of a cat on a severe catnip buzz.


I lookes at that paper at cryo discuss, and the  positioning of the crevasse groups in fig 1 struck me as possibly significant in comparison to bed topo. i attach part of fig 1


Policy and solutions / Re: Carbon Capture and Storage (CCS)
« on: May 25, 2017, 11:22:30 PM »
Effective CCS would require a reverse mining effort the size of the entire coal, oil and gas industry. That's a lot of jobs. But considering the huge scale of land rape by those three industries alone gives me a sick feeling that sequestration will cause similar ecological damage.


Policy and solutions / Re: Coal
« on: May 24, 2017, 11:53:31 PM »
Low utilization means more thermal cycle. Huge boilers at coal plants really dont like thermal cycle, they want to sit at temperature. Maintenance expense, downtime, lifetime change nonlinearly with frequency of thermal cycles.  The brave new world of vanishing baseload has no room for inflexible generation.

Unfortunately, that world seems to have no room for destitute employees either.


Gramsci's framework invoking interregnum is not essential, i think to Streeck analysis, but the diagnosis i might disagree with is the final sentence

"Today this is because all those who see themselves as exposed to the uncertainties of international markets, control of which has been promised but never delivered, will prefer a bird in their hand to two in the bush: they will choose the reality of national democracy, imperfect as it may be, over the fantasy of a democratic global society. "

I have to think on that. Another thing i think i might quibble over is his statement

"Beginning in the 1980s this was accompanied by a meltdown of trade-union organization, together with a dramatic decline in strike activity worldwide ... "

It was coming earlier. But that is a quibble, i shall follow Streeck in future.

As for exciting times and surviving them, I do not plan to. For one thing, all times are exciting to those who live in them. For another, living longer appeals less and less as I age, as I see more and more of the follies of our mad, magnificent human species.


I liked

"Only with the collapse of post-democracy, and the end of mass patience with the ‘narratives’ of a globalization that in the us had benefited in its final years only the top 1 per cent, did the guardians of the dominant ‘discourse’ call for obligatory fact-checking. Only then did they regret the deficits experienced by those caught in the pincer grip of the global attention economy on the one hand and the cost-cutting in the education and training sector on the other. It is at that point that they began to call for ‘eligibility tests’ of various kinds as a prerequisite for citizens being allowed to exercise their right to vote. [12] The fact that the Great Unwashed, who for so long had helped promote the progress of capitalism by passing their time with the Twitter feeds of Kim Kardashian, Selena Gomez, Justin Bieber e tutti quanti, had now returned to the voting booth, was registered as a sign of an ominous regression."

"The rediscovery of democracy as a political corrective, however, benefits exclusively new kinds of parties and movements whose appearance throws national political systems into disarray. The mainstream parties and their public-relations experts, which have long been closely associated with each other and with the machinery of the state, regard the new parties as a lethal threat to ‘democracy’ and fight them as such. The concept employed in this struggle, and rapidly included in the post-factual vocabulary, is that of ‘populism’, denoting left-wing and right-wing tendencies and organizations alike that reject the tina logic of ‘responsible’ politics in a world of neoliberal globalization. "

Read the whole thing. I agree with Streek on the data, and on many points in the logic, but perhaps not entirely with his eventual diagnosis.


Policy and solutions / Re: Becoming Vegan.
« on: May 21, 2017, 05:46:25 AM »
Find a farmer you like. Get meat off him. Use it as flavoring. A little goes a long way.

I just got two (dressed, with giblets) whole chickens, four dozen eggs, couple pounds smoked sausage from happily raised animals (well until they were quickly and mercifully killed ...) for twenty five US$.

Will last me awhile.


That Webber 2017 article, (open, read all about it)

documents a cold spell just b4 the drainage. I wonder ...

I notice Dutrieux and Jenkins on the author list of Webber article. Keep on truckin.


P.S. More specifically, i wonder if the ocean cooling in 2011 decreased shelf bottom melt slowing discharge, thickening ice inland; thus clamping down on interior bottom melt water efflux until pressure build caused submarine jokulhaup as seen in 2013-14 in Smith et al.

Whew, that was a long sentence, even with the semi colon.


The Swearingen interview at the intercept mentions another corporate democrat, Jim Justice ,governor of West Virginia. Unfortunately he was elected in 2016, so we can't diselect him forawhile. Billionaire.Coal and mining. Keep him in mind in 2020.


Thanx for the link to the Jaffe interview. I note he said that many contributions were coming from out of state, and that seemd to indicate many people all over the country want Pelosi out. Excellent.

Now we need DiFi challenger.


Krasner wins Philly DA democratic primary

needed a million an a half from Soros.  But against death penalty, represented Black Lives Matter and Occupy.

He is likely to win DA position, Philly is democratic. Then we watch what he does.


Arnade has insights on how the corporate democrats still don't understand their defeat. Graphs, distributions and everything.

"Frustrated with broken promises, they gave up on the knowable and went with the unknowable. They chose Trump, because he comes with a very high distribution. A high volatility. (He also signals in ugly ways, that he might just move them, and only them and their friends, higher with his stated policies).
As any trader will tell you, if you are stuck lower, you want volatility, uncertainty. No matter how it comes. Put another way. Your downside is flat, your upside isn’t. Break the system.
The elites loathe volatility. Because, the upside is limited, but the downside isn’t. In option language, they are in the money."

Read all about it. The corporate Democrats are in the money. They will change nothing. They hate volatility.
And they have the same interests as Corporate Republicans, whom we need another thread for.

"A Harvard professor of sociology is more similar (despite different politics) to a Wall Street trader, than either is to a truck driver in Appleton, Wisconsin, or a waitress in Selma, or a construction worker in Detroit."


Need the Justice democrats to run someone in Ohio 16th Congressional. Terribly gerrymandered, no Democratic candidate. Can be done, I think.

Larry Krasner, DA Philly. Against death penalty, represented Occupy, Black Lives Matter. Defense attorney running for prosecutor position.

Lets see if he gets in, or the Philly democrat machine destroys him.


The rest / Re: The Trump Presidency (was "Presidential Poll")
« on: May 14, 2017, 08:42:38 AM »
Trump is doing his brand thing. You cannot understand Trump unless you look at what he has been selling.

His name.

The Trump brand is hugely more valuable today than, say, before he was elected. His face is recognized by approximately half the population of the world right now, much more than when he was a new york grifter. The world is lining up to put up Trump towers.

He don't care. He can quit tommorrow and his brand will endure into billions more.

All he wants to do is make sure that every camera in the world is pointed squarely at him.

And like most ex USA presidents, he will get paid hugely. He is crass enuf to admit it ... as opposed to say, Obama.

I posted the rollingstone article by Taibbi earlier.

"We always assumed there was a goal behind it all: cattle cars, race war, autocracy. But those were last century's versions of tyranny. It would make perfect sense if modern America's contribution to the genre were far dumber. Trump in the White House may just be a monkey clutching history's biggest hand grenade. Yes, he's always one step ahead of us, and more dangerous than any smart person, and we can never for a minute take our eyes off him.

But while we keep looking for his hidden agenda, it's our growing addiction to the spectacle of his car-wreck presidency that is the real threat. He is already making idiots and accomplices of us all, bringing out the worst in each of us, making us dumber just by watching"

read all about it, long but worth reading, Taibbi is a keen observer:


The rest / Re: The Trump Presidency (was "Presidential Poll")
« on: May 13, 2017, 02:18:35 AM »
I can absolutely see him quitting. Just another biz deal gone bad, walk away. Or he might just get bored.


Re: " They haven't had an honest president since Jimmy Carter."

1) Jimmy Carter is a good man today. I have worked as nondescript muscle on Habitat for Humanity site, and he showed up and worked as hard as any. He can swing a hammer, for sure, and i'll help him build houses.

2) That said, I will not forgive him for the Carter Doctrine,  and listening to Brezenski to provoke Soviet military intervention. Buncha dead people on his book. I think he realizes it.


"Kshama is a nice girl and I would vote for her. But redneck flyover America (backed by ample corporate money) would then go nuts and mobilize the militia to shoot her. Or so it looked until recently.:

I have been through several thousand miles of "redneck flyover" country in the last two weeks, and many,many times that over the years. I submit that there is a very great deal of support for single payer health plans among democrat and repulblican and independent alike.


Kshama Sawant lays it on the line:

"Why is -- when the majority of people want single payer, why is it that the most prominent Democrat, Nancy Pelosi, said that single payer will not be in the Democratic Party platform? Why is it that in Democratic-dominated states -- Washington, Oregon, California, all of these have Democratic governors -- why isn't it that they are joining? Why aren't the prominent Democrats joining the movements on the ground and saying, "Let's fight for single-payer healthcare. Let's tax the rich. Let's make sure we have a West Coast-wide single-payer healthcare"? If they did that, if Jerry Brown, the governor of California, woke up today and said, "I want to fight for single-payer healthcare with you," he would get a huge echo, and they would win. But instead, he is an obstacle to that. And so, you know -- and he said, "I don't know how we can do this."

AMY GOODMAN: We have 10 seconds.

KSHAMA SAWANT: And that's -- yeah. And that shows that, ultimately, movements, our working people's, young people's movements, we cannot rely on corporate Democrats. We will have to build independently of the corporate Democrats and fight for single-payer healthcare. "


Antarctica / Re: What's new in Antarctica ?
« on: May 11, 2017, 07:18:59 PM »
An addendum to my previous comment:

Amundsen Sea glaciers are already destabilized. Filchner Ronne to go around 2070. Wonder how soon until the Ross goes, unleasing threeway attack on WAIS, and eventual open water communication as there once was. That recalled bryozoan data,  cf Vaughn(2011) doi:10.1029/2011GC003688 , also open access, read all about it. That paper says, hopefully,

"Continued ice-loss at present rates would open seaways between Amundsen and Weddell seas (A-W), and Amundsen and Bellingshausen seas (A-B), in around one thousand years. "

I think the timescale might be an order of magnitude faster. Ominously:

" ...  we conclude that opening could have occurred in MIS 5e (100 ka BP) when Antarctica was warmer than present and likely contributed to global sea levels higher than today."

Thats the Eemian. We are in Eemian temperatures now.


Antarctica / Re: What's new in Antarctica ?
« on: May 11, 2017, 06:52:20 PM »
Hellmer et al: Filchner-Ronne in jeopardy, as Hellmer had previously pointed out, he now puts timeframe on the cold-cavity to warm cavity transition.

"Derivatives of Circumpolar Deep Water are directed southward underneath the Filchner–Ronne Ice Shelf, warming the cavity and dramatically increasing basal melting ... The process is irreversible with a recurrence to twentieth-century atmospheric forcing and can only be halted through prescribing a return to twentieth-century basal melt rates. This finding might have strong implications for the stability of the Antarctic ice sheet."

"Our experiments indicate that the link between the hydrography on the southern Weddell Sea continental shelf and melt rates beneath the Filchner–Ronne Ice Shelf is controlled by a positive feedback mechanism: Once the reversal of the near-bottom density gradient across the Filchner Trough, together with a rising coastal thermocline, facilitates the direct inflow of the slope current into the trough, warm deep water flushes the ice shelf cavity, causing its warming, enhanced basal mass loss, and a vigorous outflow of glacial meltwater. The latter further freshens the shelf water and thus maintains a density and flow structure at the sill that supports further access of warm water to the ice shelf cavity. The increase in basal melting accelerates the cavity circulation, drawing in even more warm water of open ocean origin—a self-intensifying mechanism. Although the initial trigger for this transition is freshening on the continental shelf as a result of atmosphere–ocean interactions, once the system is in the warm-shelf phase, the only way to stop the inflow of the warm water is to return to twentieth-century atmospheric conditions and to reduce the meltwater input. At first, the latter could be realized by a reduction in the floating portion of the ice sheet. However, the resulting loss of buttressing of the inland ice sheet would accelerate the draining ice streams. The discharge of ice from the relevant catchment basin and a significant contribution to global sea level will be inevitable."

doi: 10.1175/JCLI-D-16-0420.1

open access. Read all about it.


Re: Thomas Curry, OCC

Appointed by Obama. Highlights of his tenure include letting JP Morgan Chase walk, letting HSBC walk, delaying prosecution of Wells Fargo, and doing his bit in ensuring that no bank was broken and no banker went to jail. Here's Elizabeth Warren:

"Comptroller of the Currency Thomas Curry said his office executed a number of consent orders but does not have to take supervised banks and thrifts to trial as a practical matter.

“I appreciate that you say you don’t have to bring them to trial,” Warren persisted. “My question is when did you bring them to trial?

None of the agency leaders seemed to be able to recall such a time. "

Of course they couldn't. They were bought and paid for, just like Obama. Watch that revolving door, as Thomas Curry is handsomely rewarded for his pains. I shed no tears for him.


Policy and solutions / Re: Becoming Vegan.
« on: May 11, 2017, 03:59:07 AM »
Think rabbits. Easy to raise and they are the worlds fastest composters. With some you can get wool. Lotsa small bones,careful with filleting. Don't need much room. They will attempt to dig out if sufficently motivated.

Free range chicken are easy too, but if you have predators around you will need a dog, and good engineering on the coops. Raccoons are ingenious, for example. Hawks and other airborne predators are tough, need netting.

Guinea hens can take care of themselves better than chickens, but boy, they are LOUD.

Bigger is tougher. Sheep if you have the pasture, and goats to control invasive plant species, but they are a lot of work compared to smaller.

Mostly, use meat like the chinese used to, as a flavoring, to a mostly plant based diet.


Re:  Manchin/Swearingen primary

Good deal. She might not win, but lets see where it goes in the primary.

Looks like the Justice democrats are looking to primary the corporates in a lot of places.


The rest / Re: Empire - America and the future
« on: May 10, 2017, 08:42:09 AM »
Failing wealth pump, so sad. But faraway brown people, not so bad


The rest / Re: New political party in the USA
« on: May 08, 2017, 09:21:17 AM »
Well, as we see, it is hard. We know how much money the corporate sellouts get. We can't match that without selling out ourselves, so we got to do it on the ground. If that is not possible within the confines of the Democratic Party, then we must do it without.

My big problem is how low do i wanna go in this fight, whether within or without the confines of the Democratic Party.


Re: "Where's our Empire???"

There is a good thread entitled "Empire - America and the future" where some of this has been discussed.


This is a thread about kicking out the corporate democrats. Some here question the need for this thread. Well, then, I suggest they start a thread entitled: "The need, or lack thereof,  for a thread entitled 'The problem of Corporate Democrats and how to kick them out' "

the progression

1) it's not happening
2) it's not bad
3) it's too hard
4) it's too late
doesn't just apply to climate.

In other news, here's Jaffe, the Pelosi challenger

and the DiFi challenger

keep on truckin. we can beat these corporate whores.


Policy and solutions / Re: Becoming Vegan.
« on: May 08, 2017, 08:43:47 AM »
Re: feedlots

They are an obscenity. Drive down the Front Range in Colorado on I-25 or US 85, you'll smell it before you see it. Theres animals standing around hock deep in their own shit. Miles and miles and miles of it.

The big pig operations are another. And the chickens.

To me, CAFO (Confined animal feeding operations) are an evil upon this earth, and my soul entirely rebels even thinking of them.


The rest / Re: Presentation of Climate Change in News Media
« on: May 06, 2017, 06:21:50 AM »
Good luck Liam. I am sure that you have consulted with your university's review board as to soliciting human participation in any research. In the USA this is commonly know as an Institutional Review Board.

That said, I am sure you will find many here with strong opinions.



These guys seem to have some of the same ideas we are exploring. I have watched some Cenk Uygur shows before, and he seems intelligent enough. 


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