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Messages - TerryM

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Policy and solutions / Re: Cars, cars and more cars. And trucks, and....
« on: November 17, 2017, 10:22:38 AM »
The specs provided are very impressive. 500 miles between charges is a great fit with America's traditional long haul trucking, although with the impressive acceleration I'd expect additional miles could be squeezed out in a typical driving day.
Nothing so far reported about cab weight or battery specs, although a mWh battery is implied. If Elon can deliver without the battery weight interfering with the maximum load he's really come up with a game changer.

Thanks Sig for keeping us on top of this.

Policy and solutions / Re: Oil and Gas Issues
« on: November 17, 2017, 06:02:29 AM »
One question I have is why anyone on this site would not want high fossil fuel prices?

High prices make for new oil and gas development. What I was arguing against last night hits break-even when the price of oil tops $75/barrel. As long as we stay below there, we get no drilling in the Arctic. Similarly, prices need to exceed $60/barrel before tar sands become viable to develop, and pipelines become viable to build.

But much of that break-even cost is up-front cost. The marginal cost once the mine is a lot lower.

If the price exceeds $60/barrel, we start to see new tar sands mines built. Those mines will keep producing until they are out of oil, or the price falls below something like $30/barrel. So high prices mean more oil coming out of the ground.

On the flip side, you're right: low oil prices mean a slower transition away from oil. But I suspect the oil price probably doesn't matter that much when it comes to cars particularly. For most people buying new cars, the price is quite secondary to other considerations (otherwise they'd be buying used) -- so that means that most cars on the road were purchased without really thinking hard about the cost of fuel.

This is quite different for fleets; the bus service in Shenzhen or the taxi company in Montreal have accountants that care about the budget. But they aren't burning nearly as much oil as individuals do.
I hadn't considered the Tar Sands, and you're right of course. If FF's are too cheap, there is little financial reason to move to renewables. Perhaps floating about where we are isn't too bad. Most solar and wind applications are more than able to compete, yet not enough money in oil to make Tar Sands, or other "exotic" development viable.

Policy and solutions / Re: But, but, but, China....
« on: November 17, 2017, 05:38:47 AM »
One year of growth after several years of stagnation doesn’t give me much expectation of continued growth until 2049.

It’s definitely not a steep decline year over year like we’ve been needing the past twenty years, but stagnation is better than anything in anyone’s lifetime.
I believe that China also experienced high GDP growth, even while keeping their CO2 emissions flat. Quite an inspiring feat when deniers have claimed that GDP growth requires increased GHG production.
Eliminating coal, as Quebec and Ontario have both done, is not just possible, it's an attainable goal that everyone, at least everyone in North America, should strive for. Without cleaning up our own act it's hard to complain about others.

Policy and solutions / Re: Cars, cars and more cars. And trucks, and....
« on: November 17, 2017, 05:20:09 AM »
We actually have a very nice mass transit system for our size: $7 you get a ride anywhere in a cab. The cab picks up and drops off passengers on the way, it’s not exclusive for you.

Just need to electrify it, and for that, we need batteries that don’t void their warranty upon spending a day at -30. Surviving a 24-hour period down to -45 would be fine.
The 7$ cab deal sounds wonderful.
I'd actually been thinking of a video I'd just seen documenting a highway near Yellowknife that had been destroyed as the ground beneath parts of it had melted away.
It seemed as though rail at any speed would be difficult there, & tunneling would be asking for trouble.
Is the permafrost in your region still permanent?

Policy and solutions / Re: Cars, cars and more cars. And trucks, and....
« on: November 17, 2017, 03:22:06 AM »
With 120 mph car traffic, you’d decrease air traffic a lot, and rail traffic, and bus traffic — but how do you decrease highway traffic?

Not sure how to answer as I am not sure what you are getting at. What is aim of this question?

Why would you need to if it was all renewable electric powered?
700mph hyperloop?
encourage videoconferencing?

Sorry, I hadn't quoted what I was talking about!

Bob mentioned that with cars going 120 mph there would be less traffic on the highway (because people would reach their destination twice as fast). I'm dubious, and I'd prefer we work towards limiting personal automobiles:

1. History shows that making more lanes just makes more cars. In this case, we have the same number of lanes but cars take up half the lane-minutes for any given trip, same effect in the end. That will likely be filled up by people switching from taking mass transit (or Skype) to riding in a car. So I don't think traffic will fall.

2. The fuel burned by a car is the bulk of the damage, but there's still damage from the road itself, from the mining for the car materials, from mining and construction for the power infrastructure, from tires, etc. Switching to EVs is a huge boon to the environment. Switching from mass transit to personal transit is bad for the environment.
Ramen to the bolded.

I can envisage a future where you walk/bike to your HSR station, are whisked to your destination city's transportation hub where a subway, trolley or E-bus is ready to drop you within a block or so of your destination.
The new transportation hub system in K/W, (Kitchener/Waterloo) is being built so that when/if HSR is finally a reality, a bus, trolley, and light rail system will be in place.

Coming soon to a city near you!  :)

Unless of course you live in the land of the not-so-permafrost.  :(


Policy and solutions / Re: Oil and Gas Issues
« on: November 16, 2017, 05:14:41 PM »

One question I have is why anyone on this site would not want high fossil fuel prices?
Personally whatever promotes a rapid shift to renewables is good, and I'm willing to suffer a little if it's required.


The rest / Re: Who should be the Democratic nominee for President in 2020?
« on: November 16, 2017, 05:02:05 PM »
How about Tulsi Gabbard?
Whoever the Dems run, if running against Trump, should win. We should have a wide enough opening to fit a progressive through.
If Trump is impeached, or not nominated by the Reps, all bets are off.


Permafrost / Re: Modelling permafrost carbon feedback
« on: November 16, 2017, 04:46:41 PM »
In this video Miriam Jones of USGS provides a good overview of some research on methane and carbon release from permafrost thaw, touching on thermokarst lakes and also how rapid the release of carbon is once thaw is underway. A very clear and straightforward presentation with Q&A:

Excellent link!
While not exactly on topic:
The sudden drop & rebound in CH4 beginning with the Younger Dryas, (~min 34) was surprising, and may not bode well for a warmer future. In that instance at least the CH4 emissions turned on and off with cooling, then warming, following temperature change with a frightening rapidity. 
P.S.  the W5 TV program that followed was also informative.

Policy and solutions / Re: Cars, cars and more cars. And trucks, and....
« on: November 16, 2017, 02:51:04 PM »
I assume that electric motors, wiring and controls are much lighter than the large diesel engines and transmissions they'll replace. Batteries of course are much heavier per kilometer than the diesel fuel needed to go a certain distance.
The trucks I was familiar with in the 1960's typically carried ~200 American Gallons, giving a range of ~500 miles, which was also considered a normal day's drive. 10 hours of driving  @ an average of 50 MPH.
Two questions come to mind. How much additional weight would a battery pack capable of 500 miles add to the load, and, if one limited a vehicle to the same weight as a diesel vehicle, with fuel, how far would that battery pack take the loaded vehicle?

Policy and solutions / Re: Cars, cars and more cars. And trucks, and....
« on: November 16, 2017, 02:28:37 PM »
Per Wikipedia, "As of 2016, 156,000 buses are being put into service per year in China."

Thanks.  As I thought, that looks like it is the number for “electrified” buses — including hybrids.

A couple links in, I found the chart below for 100% electric buses.

Do you ever get the feeling that we're so far behind we may never catch up?

The rest / Re: The Trump Presidency (was "Presidential Poll")
« on: November 15, 2017, 05:22:33 PM »
Previously Bellingcat produced a video of the dissipating smoke trail from the Buc that supposedly shot down MH-17 over the Ukraine, only to find that the video was taken prior to MH-17's having been shot down.
Any link?
Extraordinary claims require extraordinary links, as Carl Sagan would have said...

Sure - although I don't find noting another skewed observation by Bellingcat terribly extraordinary.

Believe that Bellingcat's own site refers to the discrepancy. Blamed it on a faulty camera setting if I recall correctly. - Just how a faulty camera setting would cause a faulty internet time stamp is left to the judgment of the reader.

Did you note the UN's problems with the Bellingcat video as posted above?
When you claim to have a video showing the chemical strikes hitting the city, only to find that >100 victims of the attack had been hospitalized an hour earlier, it strains one's credulity.

It's dangerous when armed forces come to rely on sources that prove to be less than reliable. When over 50 missiles are sent out it's hard to believe that only 9 civilian deaths were the result, but 5 adults and 4 children are that were claimed by Assad's Syrians.

Give me a day or so as I'm involved in some other stuff at the moment, but I promise a few URLs.
Mia Culpa

1) 'Twas a series of photos, not a video, therefore Eliot was using data from the camera, not internet metadata as I'd claimed.
2) Eliot (Bellingcat) claimed the time stamp was 4 min to 4.5 min ahead of real time, not late.

"the camera’s time stamp was approximately 4 minutes to 4 minutes and 30 seconds ahead of the real[/size] time."[/color]

The photos that Pavel Aleynikov shot of smoke near Senzhnoe were shot ~30 seconds after the blast according to him, but ~5 min after MH-17 was struck according to his camera's date time stamp.

There is some minor discrepancy with the time, but certainly nothing to indicate that it was shot prior to MH-17 being hit.

My Bad

The rest / Re: The problem of Corporate Democrats and how to kick them out
« on: November 15, 2017, 03:38:02 AM »
Biden as presidential candidate in 2020 would be a huge error for the Democratic party. Too many remember him as the senator from MBNA who was a chief architect of making student (and other) loans undischargeable in bankruptcy. His victims have not forgotten.

I go thru his hometown of Scranton now and then. I was there last year before the election, visited with a family whose kids have moved back home because of their student loan debt servitude. Their father was a union member, voted straight democratic ticket all his life until last year. Biden was on TV, he turned it off. His comment was, "I wouldn't piss on him if he was on fire." Those sentiments are widely shared.

His children turned out no better. Beau (the one who died of cancer) was DA in Baltimore, did nothing while cops were waging war on the black population. Another son, Hunter is neck deep with Ukrainian oligarchs.


I think Hunter's antics would be enough to kill off any hope of daddy's candidacy, although they might fill the DNC's coffers. :(

Policy and solutions / Re: Geoengineering, another rush for money?
« on: November 15, 2017, 02:03:38 AM »
The linked article (and associated linked open access study reference) makes it clear that if in some last minute desperation attempt by some local group of nations (say by economically developed NH nations, which would include China by 2049) to use 'stratospheric aerosol injection' to ease their suffering; they would make the climate situation worse for others (such as for the SH nations):

Title: "Unregulated solar geoengineering could spark droughts and hurricanes, study warns"

Extract: "Artificially cooling the planet through solar geoengineering could have some dramatic side effects – including an increase in droughts and hurricanes in some regions – if it is carried out in an unregulated way, a new study warns.
I'd think that even if regulated, (by whom), the results could prove disastrous.

The rest / Re: The Trump Presidency (was "Presidential Poll")
« on: November 15, 2017, 01:55:27 AM »
Previously Bellingcat produced a video of the dissipating smoke trail from the Buc that supposedly shot down MH-17 over the Ukraine, only to find that the video was taken prior to MH-17's having been shot down.
Any link?
Extraordinary claims require extraordinary links, as Carl Sagan would have said...

Sure - although I don't find noting another skewed observation by Bellingcat terribly extraordinary.

Believe that Bellingcat's own site refers to the discrepancy. Blamed it on a faulty camera setting if I recall correctly. - Just how a faulty camera setting would cause a faulty internet time stamp is left to the judgment of the reader.

Did you note the UN's problems with the Bellingcat video as posted above?
When you claim to have a video showing the chemical strikes hitting the city, only to find that >100 victims of the attack had been hospitalized an hour earlier, it strains one's credulity.

It's dangerous when armed forces come to rely on sources that prove to be less than reliable. When over 50 missiles are sent out it's hard to believe that only 9 civilian deaths were the result, but 5 adults and 4 children are that were claimed by Assad's Syrians.

Give me a day or so as I'm involved in some other stuff at the moment, but I promise a few URLs.

Science / Re: Trump Administration Assaults on Science
« on: November 14, 2017, 03:04:10 AM »
Here’s Trump’s pick for Top Environmental Advisor answering questions about the environment in a confirmation hearing.  Or, trying to.  ::)  Unbelievable!

(Senator Whitehouse continually gives speeches on the floor of the Senate, warning about climate change.)
Wow, just Wow!

The rest / Re: The Trump Presidency (was "Presidential Poll")
« on: November 14, 2017, 01:15:54 AM »
it seems as though you have to dig through 14 pages of the UN report into Assad's chemical attacks to find Annex II, where the whole story is exposed as a fake.

It seems as though Eliot Higgins, a senior fellow at the " fiercely anti-Russian Atlantic Counsel", writing in his Bellingcat Blog was instrumental in deceiving President Trump, causing the launch of  59 Tomahawk Missiles into Syria, and the death of at least 9 civilians.

It wasn't smoke and mirrors, simply 3 plumes of smoke that were given as evidence that the Syrian Air Force had dropped the chemical laced bombs. The problem, as Annex II eventually points out is that >100 victims of the chemical attack had been hospitalized an hour earlier than the times shown on Bellingcat's video of the plumes.

As I pointed out some time back, this wasn't the first of Bellingcat's problems with meta-data timing. Previously Bellingcat produced a video of the dissipating smoke trail from the Buc that supposedly shot down MH-17 over the Ukraine, only to find that the video was taken prior to MH-17's having been shot down.

To be fair, Trump wasn't the only one deceived. The UN's JIM, Joint Investigative Mechanism, "delivered the verdict that the US and her allies wanted".

Just days earlier Trump had announced that "regime change was no longer America's goal", and, as Neven has noted, "sometimes it's more important to ask who benefits".

It's a fairly wordy piece authored by Robert Perry that features other UN investigated atrocities going back to Jr. Bush's days as Commander in Chief.


The rest / Re: The Trump Presidency (was "Presidential Poll")
« on: November 13, 2017, 11:57:34 PM »
Well it's not as if we were running a deficit, and really couldn't afford endless rounds of prosecution of the powerful in America. Look at how efficiently the KSA is handling their own situation. No interminable investigations, no tedious trials. Rent a hotel, lock 'em up, and shoot those fleeing. A throwback to simpler times when men were men, and women walked a pace behind them.

If this weren't a time when things were going so smoothly, both at home and abroad, one might object that this could distract our Deal Maker in Chief. Even if the world wasn't peacefully spinning along, we'd be secure, knowing that Trump's Towering Intellect would allow him to compartmentalize complex commitments, and that he'd never be so battered and shattered that he'd be reduced to twittering mindless tweets rather than Making America Grate.TM


The rest / Re: The Trump Presidency (was "Presidential Poll")
« on: November 13, 2017, 10:13:34 PM »
You're beginning to sound much like those who cheered on Ken Starr, not so many years ago.
Perhaps a path to be avoided?  ::)

The rest / Re: Russiagate
« on: November 13, 2017, 10:08:35 PM »
Perhaps a slightly aged recap from the proudly progressive "The Nation" would chill the Left vs Right nature that Russiagate seems to have acquired.

This "leftist rag" had earlier published an article that the DNC hack had to have been a DNC leak as proven by the speed of the file transfer captured and saved in the meta-data.
Some objected to this appraisal so The Nation responded by publishing their objections, responses to their objections, and finally the objections to the objections to the objectors objections. Whew!

The article itself is filled with contradictory conclusions, and I might suggest skipping straight to the comments section for the less technically astute.
Bear in mind while reading that Wikileaks insists there was no state involvement in the DNS leaks that they obtained and published. Also the complexity required by the deniers in concluding that under very convoluted circumstances data downloads at such transfer rates could be possible. Occam's beard might have concealed much had he awaited such a complex shave.

One or more of the commenters also asks why the former ambassador who claims specific knowledge re. the leak has never been questioned under oath.


The rest / Re: Russiagate
« on: November 13, 2017, 11:58:18 AM »
It pains me to see people here repeating easily-debunked claims birthed on and propagated by far right media outlets. Most recently, someone above used chickenshit Fox/Grudge tactics to smear the tens of thousands of women who participated in the creation of hundreds of thousands of pink hats worn at the January Women's March on Washington by insinuating in a disturbingly Hannity-like way that maybe frequent RWNJ boogeyman George Soros planned, and footed the bill for, the whole thing, as though it wasn't a provably grassroots project started last Thanksgiving by a pair of recreational knitters upset by Trump's popular-vote-losing "victory".

I really wish we'd leave the cheap smears for Breitbart...
I'm sorry that you find the story that 2 recreational knitters organised, and funded, what was probably the largest protest in the US for the year, ever remotely believable. I have to assume you've never taken part in any major protests yourself, or you would probably have some knowledge of the planning, preparation and logistics involved.

Here in Canada Fox is not aired, so references to Fox/Grudge, or Hannity, simply have little applicability. Searching for connections between myself and the right will come up empty. I'm an overaged hippy whose values haven't been modified by the intervening years.

I'd also be more than willing to compare our respective histories re. support for, sometimes radical left wing causes. If the right sometimes espouses truth, it's only because, like a broken watch, from time to time they, unaware, stumble across it in the darkness of their musings.

My Icon is actually a (fairly recent)? photo of me taken during a leftist Canadian protest, protesting one of Harper's overreaching ploys. My earliest participation dates back to the People's Park March in Berkeley. I didn't get a degree, but I did get an education. :)

When was the last time you were in the street with a placard? and who was it that were you willing to face arrest for?


The rest / Re: Russiagate
« on: November 12, 2017, 07:01:02 PM »

Its fascinating to me that most of the skeptics regarding RussiaGate come from OUTSIDE the US:  Canada, Australia, Austria....and now Sweden.  Fascinating.  All of you are certainly smarter than I have only had 20 years experience in actually viewing the US politics as an adult....and as an INDEPENDENT my whole voting life.

There are TWO THINGS for sure in RussiaGate:

1). Mueller has a LOT more information than anyone knows...

2). Moron Don and his band of incompetents CONTINUE to be caught in lies.. that ARE viewable by the public.  I can't wait to see the lies that are currently knowable by Mueller.

Why does Donnie and company continue to be caught in lies?  We will find out in coming months...

As one who only spent 41 years as an adult actually viewing and participating in American politics as a DEMOCRAT, might I suggest that those of us presently away from America's shores, are also away from the direct influence of the propaganda that might be distorting your views?
Do you recall when the States had their rather abrupt hate for France? Many Americans thought it  "Patriotic" to call french fries "Freedom Fries", and to pour fine wine into the gutter. Personally I developed a craving for Perrier, and ordered it at every meal.
Perhaps you thought it normal to have thousands of women sew together vagina hats, in an astonishingly short period of time, then wear them in public, proudly. Some thought this was indicative of a great patriotic movement. Some thought this smelled of Soros recent obsession with a particular facet of female anatomy, and a very direct signal indicating the sponsor of the "event".(think "Pussy Riot" in Russia)
Since you've only been politically aware for 20 years, examples from Nixon's time, even Reagan's time, would be as lost on you as lessons from Hoover or Roosevelt's administrations would be lost in the haze of history to me.
I'm not claiming that any of us are free from propaganda. I am claiming that some of us are much less immersed in American propaganda than others.


The rest / Re: The problem of Corporate Democrats and how to kick them out
« on: November 11, 2017, 11:20:27 PM »
Two good links & I particularly appreciated the comments at the first link. The Russians don't get a lot of coverage when the county in question serves up a 40 point jump between elections.

Why did this county swing from Obama supporters to anyone but Hillary voters over such a short time? The short answer is they just didn't like or trust Hillary. The longer version is that even though she outspent Trump by over 300%, she couldn't buy the people's support.

Policy and solutions / Re: Adaption to Climate Change (Natural Ecosystems)
« on: November 11, 2017, 08:59:39 PM »
I'm unsure of why you wish to isolate cityscapes from more "natural" environments. As things warm up, and central control becomes more difficult to maintain, those seeking security, or shelter, or assistance, may flood into existing cities, exacerbating problems that already exist, and bringing new problems with them.

Reintroducing beaver while culling cattle herds might do wonders for many western watersheds. I've noticed a recent increase in problems associated with older, medium sized dams. When historic precipitation patterns are altered, many of the structures put in place to facilitate irrigation, flood control or Hydroelectric production may need to be shored up, torn down, or altered to meet the altered precipitation we're now facing.
Should cities below dams be abandoned, or should ongoing maintenance and repair be given a very high priority?


The rest / Re: Russiagate
« on: November 11, 2017, 04:45:41 AM »
Apparently The Clinton Foundation, with it's ties to Saudi Royalty & Ukrainian Oligarchs was recognised as problematical before Hillary's defeat,

"And in an election year in which a majority of Americans say they do not trust Mrs. Clinton, even some allies questioned why the foundation had not reined in foreign donations sooner, or ended them immediately."
(my bolding)

at least according to the New York Times. - from 2016


The rest / Re: Russiagate
« on: November 11, 2017, 12:01:59 AM »
The gal who was to take over at Podesta's group announces other plans.

What's the crew to do when the captain is the first to abandon ship?

The rest / Re: Empire - America and the future
« on: November 10, 2017, 11:58:37 PM »
Costs of (some) wars 4.3 trillion. Covers Afghanistan, Pakistan, Syria and Iraq. Africa doesnt get a mention.

A little piece on US involvement in Africa.
Some comparisons to Vietnam  :(

The rest / Re: Russiagate
« on: November 10, 2017, 09:12:26 AM »
Wikileaks releases (some) sourcecode of CIA malware. Apparently the CIA was masquerading implant traffic using Kaspersky certificates. So that makes me rethink the Kaspersky accusations earlier this year.

Wasn't one of the earlier vault8 releases software designed to make NSA interference appear to have originated from a country of the NSA's choice.
With this new revelation it appears as though our spies have targeted one of their corporations. Would anyone dare to sue?, and in what venue?

The rest / Re: Russiagate
« on: November 09, 2017, 01:37:44 PM »
TerryM, I get about 50 requests a day to "chip in" somewhere between $3 and $500 from multiple parties, thanks to having contributed what we could before last year's election. Many of these come from Bernie's progressive allies. I don't think money helps much and I don't normally succumb, but it's the way things are done now, and unilateral disarmament is a questionable tactic.

I had financially supported the Democratic party for decades, then supported the Liberal Party here in Canada, until after the last election cycle. I'm still very satisfied by my provincial liberals, but have been having second thoughts about Trudeau's Federal Liberals, although not particularly for the stances you've mentioned.
Grassroot donations are needed until a more equatable system of funding campaigns is put into place and I've always approved (and participated) in this. What I rail against is large donations from lobbyists, multinationals, and  groups such as Big Ag, Pharmaceutical groups, Big Oil, etc.

I read my daily mailings from DeSmog Canada, and though I like Trudeau, some of the things he seems to approve are highly questionable (Tar Sands, mining, etc.). I have to assume that he like every politician has to work with people who oppose him. Obama a year or two back had to pass on an Arctic drilling lease; when I looked more closely it turned out to be a Bush initiative which Obama was wiser to modify by maintaining control, rather than refusing to act which would result in passing it on to people who would make it worse. That's the thing about politics: it's a dirty business. Those who want their hands clean can stand on the sidelines and wring them. I wholly support Elizabeth Warren, but it's obvious she is not unwilling to do what's necessary to win. The alternative is losing.

It is understandable, particularly in the climate arena, that compromise is no longer acceptable. What's to do?
What to do indeed.

Climate change is a global problem, and it will require global cooperation if we are to have any chance of coming out of this in one piece. Cooperation - say through something like the Paris Accord - is a very minimal beginning.
Many Republicans reject the Paris Accord, many Democrats are suddenly warhawks. I fear both of these groups because I can't imagine my grandchildren surviving if either holds power.

What's one to do?

The rest / Re: The Trump Presidency (was "Presidential Poll")
« on: November 09, 2017, 12:24:06 PM »
While the linked article says much more about our current situation, the insight that resonated with me is that Trump is allowing lobbyists for big business to govern the country while Trump is busy Twitting:

Title: "A Year Without a President"

Extract: "It seems like forever, but it was just one year ago that Donald Trump was elected president. So what have we learned about the presidency and who is running the country?
3. The third big thing we’ve learned is where the governing of the country is actually occurring.

Much is being done by lobbyists for big business, who now swarm over the Trump administration like honey bees over a hedgerow of hollyhocks."

It's obviously horrible to have lobbyists involved directly in governing, and Trump's government should be chastised.
What bothers me even more is that my party is guilty of installing lobbyists into leadership positions within the DNC. This is something new, Obama's DNC wouldn't even accept donations from lobbyists.
I can't do much about Trump's government until the next election, but pressure on the DNC might produce results in the near future.


Policy and solutions / Re: Oil and Gas Issues
« on: November 09, 2017, 01:10:23 AM »
I don't know how much info people outside the US are getting about what is happening in the US at the moment but if you haven't heard Mueller, the person investigating the Trump/Russia connections, is starting to indict some of Trump's people.

The standard route for these sorts of investigations is that you charge people further down the ladder and offer them an easier way out if they deliver useful information on people farther up.

They haven't tapped Kushner and Don Jr. on the shoulder yet but people seem to think it won't be long.  There's a lot of hearsay regarding their involvement in Russian interference in last November's election but we don't know what the evidence will show.

This could turn out to be very nasty.  A worst case telling is that the Russians got a lot of people in Trump's circle involved in money laundering via real estate deals.  Trump has long been suspected of doing business with both NY mobsters and Russian oligarchs.  Most banks long ago quit doing business with him and rumor is that he reached out to shady operators for financing to keep his businesses afloat.

Some are suggesting that this may be a bigger mess than was Watergate.

Best if the rest of the world go on with global business and not count on help from the US for awhile.  Trump's word is obviously no good and the US may be entering a period of significant turmoil.

The problem, at least here in Canada, is that Trump's USA is wreaking havoc in so many areas. Ridiculous tariffs on our airplanes, noises about energy tariffs, and basically throwing NAFTA into the trash can.
The fault isn't 100% on your side, we had a wonderful, skilled, negotiator, with good green sensibilities, that was sacked in favor of a Pro-Ukrainian fanatic.

A Period of Significant Turmoil, it deserves capitalization. :(

The rest / Re: Russiagate
« on: November 09, 2017, 12:49:25 AM »
Those celebrating east coast Democratic victories should not think that signifies too much. Maine Medicaid expansion was an excellent result. Four safe Republican House of Representatives seats stayed safe. Utah: Republican 57.6% Democrat 27.1% and NJ should have been a landslide but wasn't. If Roy Moore is defeated in Alabama that will be something. I think the moderate-progressive infighting is not helping, on both sides, and am torn by it. As an old fashioned liberal I keep close to my mind and heart all progressive principles and ideals but more than anything I want those monsters out, and quickly, as they do daily harm, much of which is not visible (local authorities, judges, etc.). While Donna Brazile goes on a triumphal book tour, the dirty laundry on the Dem side supports ongoing attacks and implies that you might as well have Trumpians as insider Democrats, which is simply not true.
I believe it's important for Democrats to celebrate this rare win, and for us to try to extract enough knowledge from it to assure future victories.

We seem to have elected Democrats of every stripe and persuasion, which may indicate that this was more a backlash against Trump, or the Republicans, than the sudden embrace of the democratic values we hold dear.
If this is so we shouldn't rest on our fresh bower of laurels, but get back to work and discover how we can improve our candidates and our party, to the point that we can win elections, even when our opponents are not shooting themselves in the foot at every opportunity.

In the excerpts from Brazile's book that I've read so far, the campaign that lost to Trump's high tech juggernaut seemed quite capable of losing again, with or without outside interference. Regardless of whether we believe that the Evil Russkies had a measurable effect on the outcome, we should act, going forward, as if it was actually a contest between ourselves and Trump's Republicans, and therefore a contest in which our actions will have an effect on the results.

Brazile speaks of unfair primaries, due in part to the DNC's squandering of donations on contract experts during off election years.
Is the DNC's spending out of control at this time?
Are we paying for consultants that we don't need, and can't afford?

We hired an outside firm to determine who leaked or hacked our computers. Why? The FBI typically handles this type of thing at no charge. If they're still under contract, fire them, hand over the hard drives to the FBI and let them do their job.

Once we have our spending under control we can again take control of whose donations we'll accept. Obama's DNC wouldn't allow lobbyist to donate. That would be a fitting start.

And for gods sake stay away from Donna's expert acupuncturists!

The rest / Re: The Trump Presidency (was "Presidential Poll")
« on: November 08, 2017, 11:27:44 AM »
Thanks Terry, maybe we as Democrats do a bit too much "hand wringing"? I wonder if Republicans do the same?

Best Regards,


I set up a web site and did tech support for a friend who ran on the Republican ticket in Nevada some decades ago.
My take is that many Republicans at that time and place didn't doubt the correctness of their position any more than our side did and does. He basically ran his campaign as instructed by the Republican strategists, and I've assumed that this was his undoing.
He was a likable chap, not too insistent on telling the truth, and he might have won had he been given a free hand to play.

The Nevada RNC candidate manual, as I recall it, laid out certain positions that their candidate's were to hold, other issues to be avoided, and stances that their candidate's were to push at every opportunity.

Avoiding the Nuclear waste issue was high on their list, and it was simply impossible to do so in a public forum. The "hand wringing" I witnessed was that a preponderance of the state candidates recognised that the Nuclear Depository was going to be their downfall. They argued amongst themselves about how close they could come to disavowing the Depository without getting booted from the party, or losing all those wonderful contributions from energy companies that were from out of state and didn't care what they did as long as they could dump their spent fuel rods in our desert.

Not really soul searching, but again, these were Republicans with no souls to search. ::)

The rest / Re: The Trump Presidency (was "Presidential Poll")
« on: November 08, 2017, 09:34:13 AM »
And in classic fashion, Trump blamed it on others.


Thank FSM that as Democrats we've never be so self defeating as to blame our electoral loss on others.  ::)

If we did such a thing we might then be tempted to rerun the same "blameless" campaign at some time in the future, and we might again be astounded should we again taste defeat. Einstein is usually credited with noting that "Doing the same thing and expecting different results is insane", but in cases such as this I think Narcissism rather than insanity is the culprit.

Would now be a good time to dissect these races and to determine why the latest results are so different from even the recent past?  8)


The rest / Re: The problem of Corporate Democrats and how to kick them out
« on: November 08, 2017, 08:06:47 AM »
Congratulations to the Democratic winners!!

Most voters do want what the Democratic Party espouses. Cut the corporate strings and watch us soar. Hillary is shrinking in the rear view mirror, as memories of her failed campaign fade, the progressive base can again bring home winners.


The rest / Re: Russiagate
« on: November 08, 2017, 01:55:33 AM »
The fact that Jr. left early, while Manafort snored in the corner underlines that this was indeed a very unsuccessful meeting. Whatever the lady was trying to sell, the campaign, as represented by Trump Jr., was unwilling to buy.

Of course, it matters not one bit whether the meeting was "successful"; the crime was in the acceptance and the setup. TrumpCo thought they were going to get some juicy dirt on Clinton, period. Even if the Russians really did pull a bait and switch, that doesn't absolve the Tangerine Vichy and his offspring. Ask Mueller; he'll tell you.

But there was no "acceptance", Jr. was possibly set up, but he said no, and left her hanging.

The rest / Re: The problem of Corporate Democrats and how to kick them out
« on: November 08, 2017, 01:51:01 AM »
Tulsi reacting to Donna's revelations, now that we're all on a first name basis:

She strikes me as an electable democrat. Electable at any level.

Permafrost / Re: Arctic Methane Release
« on: November 07, 2017, 11:51:56 PM »
My reading of S&S is that they see the free gas below the hydrates as by far the greater problem that faces us, hydrates or clathrates making up only a small percentage of the ESAS's sequestered methane.

Science / Re: Trump Administration Assaults on Science
« on: November 07, 2017, 11:41:11 PM »
A decent article Susan, but the comments were very disappointing. Raced off in all directions, often straying far from what the article's author was saying. Wired once attracted a fairly astute readership, perhaps it still does with the exception of some who responded to this particular piece. :)
Has taking a shot at Putin now become a prerequisite for publication? The paragraph seemed divorced from the rest of the article, a cut and paste that had little or nothing to do with what preceded, or followed it.

A few months ago I'd come upon a chart that purported to show the difference between Republican and Democratic voters preferences. All the expected were there, plus one I'd not foreseen. The Republicans, according to this piece, are now against a university education.
They'd long been seen by some as "liberal indoctrination camps", but now, apparently the whole concept of higher learning is being viewed with a jaundiced eye.

I'll scurry around in my book marks to see if I retained the article,

Policy and solutions / Re: But, but, but, China....
« on: November 07, 2017, 10:18:28 PM »
If China wants to dump solar panels and wind turbines on any nation, that nation should gladly accept with thanks. "Dumping" is a strange concept when someone hands out capital goods.
If a competitor is selling a product for less than their cost of production it might be considered "dumping", however it might also be a "loss leader", or even an "inventory reduction sale".
Americans might be more familiar with the year end sales in which retailers dump their merchandise below cost to avoid annual inventory taxation.

When China builds a billion solar panels, and their competitor's output is < a million, it's safe to assume that the volume manufacturer's costs per unit will be less than their competition. Perhaps not a level playing field, but should General Motors price their product so that hand built cars made in a London suburb can compete?

The money/jobs that solar and wind offers will be on the installation and maintenance side. The lower the cost of the hardware being installed, the more installations, and these will require more maintenance. Placing high tariffs on foreign made hardware costs America jobs.
Increasing the costs of renewable energy, increases fossil fuel usage. Increasing energy costs leads to more expensive American manufacturing costs, which again leads to fewer American manufacturing jobs.

Tariffs are a two edged sword.


The rest / Re: Russiagate
« on: November 07, 2017, 09:27:22 PM »
Putin plays a card in this game :

and with that he throws Donald Jr under the bus,

“Looking ahead, if we come to power, we can return to this issue and think what to do about it,’’ Trump Jr. said of the 2012 law, she recalled. “I understand our side may have messed up, but it’ll take a long time to get to the bottom of it,” he added, according to her.

Does this sound like code for I'll do a deal if you have the dirt I want?

Personally, I think it sounds more like 'in future we will think about it' in other words 'we will do what we want not what you want' or 'I am not going to do a deal with you'.

So far from throwing under bus, it sounds like continue to try to remove pressure from Trump which might be what we would expect and fairly useless.

But it is quite possible that I am completely misreading situation.

I'd have difficulty reading it any other way.

Jr. is plainly stating that now (during the campaign) is not the time to address the issue, and also indicates that a future Trump administration would look into the situation following the campaign, rather than taking sides at this time. (during the campaign)

The fact that Jr. left early, while Manafort snored in the corner underlines that this was indeed a very unsuccessful meeting. Whatever the lady was trying to sell, the campaign, as represented by Trump Jr., was unwilling to buy.


Policy and solutions / Re: Oil and Gas Issues
« on: November 07, 2017, 07:26:12 AM »
The plots thicken:

Harriri Junior fled to Saudi and announce his resignation as Lebanese PM on Saudi owned TV citing fears of assassination plot, of which he was warned by Western intelligence agencies.

"Western intelligence agencies warned former Lebanese prime minister Saad al-Hariri of an assassination plot against him ... "

Lebanese security and army has no idea

"However, Major General Abbas Ibrahim, head of Lebanon’s General Security, said he had no information about an assassination plot against political figures in Lebanon. The army also said it had not uncovered any such plots. "

Then Harriri's princely associate in the company Oger was busted, see my last comment

Then today,

"Saudi Arabia accused Lebanon on Monday of declaring war ... "

I think there a a couple countries in between but Salman might declare war on them too.

Then Saudi closes all land, sea and air access to Yemen:

More, better, newer wars in the Middle East, packed with more profit and death.


Doesn't Dick Cheney own a chunk of that large, recently discovered Golan Heights oil patch?
How is it that our oil always lies under their sand?


The rest / Re: Russiagate
« on: November 07, 2017, 07:13:46 AM »
Putin plays a card in this game :

and with that he throws Donald Jr under the bus, and tightens his grip on Trump's balls.

There is now no doubt in my mind that the June 2016 meeting in Trump tower was taped. Not by Obama, but by Putin. It was a set-up to obtain leverage.
I dare say anyone familiar with the history of American Presidents who "taped" their guests, would assume that the worlds other leaders might act in a similar boorish manner.
My personal favorite was LBJ tasking Hoover with scanning the white house insiders for evidence of homosexual tendencies.

The rest / Re: The problem of Corporate Democrats and how to kick them out
« on: November 07, 2017, 06:57:34 AM »

After you bring the rock, you must polish the rock. After you polish the rock, you must remove all of the excess polish. After you remove all of the excess polish, you must ....

Aggravating huh

The rest / Re: The Trump Presidency (was "Presidential Poll")
« on: November 06, 2017, 10:27:55 PM »
Trump reportedly told tribal leaders to ignore federal laws
The [Native American] chiefs explained to Trump that there were regulatory barriers preventing them from getting at their energy. Trump replied: “But now it’s me. The government’s different now. Obama’s gone; and we’re doing things differently here.”

As Axios described the scene, it was at this point in which the tribal leaders paused, looked at each other, and seemed uncertain about how to proceed.

Trump, however, was reportedly emphatic, telling one of the tribal leaders, “Chief, chief, what are they going to do? Once you get it out of the ground are they going to make you put it back in there? I mean, once it’s out of the ground it can’t go back in there. You’ve just got to do it. I’m telling you, chief, you’ve just got to do it.”

Just so we’re clear, “it” refers to breaking the law, and “they” refer to officials from Trump’s own administration who have a responsibility to act in accordance with the law. ...

"The White House didn’t dispute the story."

Slow news cycle?
This story is from June. I thought that with the shootings in Texas and the KSA, Kate Upton getting married, or Jimmy Fallon taking the week off,  the news rooms would be cranking out new news full time.
Silly Me :(

The rest / Re: Russiagate
« on: November 06, 2017, 10:10:38 PM »
Another Saudi Prince bites the dust sand. This time with direct links to Hariri, the Lebanese PM who so recently resigned his position while visiting Saudi Arabia.


Two Saudi Princes in 24 hours.

Mean while, just a few countries over the Isolated, Evil, Russian, Putin, has put the finishing swirls on a document pledging a $30Billion investment in the Iranian energy sector. The Age of Oil may be over, but somebody forgot to tell the Saudis, Iran and Russia. The Saudi's are painting the desert in Regal Blood Lines, Iran and Russia in Oil and Gas Pipe Lines.

Western investors may have missed the boat, but Rosneft, having plugged the leak, sails away with valuable goodies. The India, Pakistan, Iranian pipeline will give both importing nations a reason to try to get along, and to get along without more coal. Surely a win - win situation.


The rest / Re: The problem of Corporate Democrats and how to kick them out
« on: November 06, 2017, 08:59:45 PM »
Refresh my memory if need be, but wasn't a vote taken, and didn't Perez lose that vote?
Didn't the DNC have to claim that previously unseen "super delegates" had swung the vote to Perez before announcing his win?

Brazile needed to go because she was "disgraced"
She had been interim chair because Schultz was "disgraced"

After anointing two disgraceful candidates in a row, wasn't it time for the "anointers" to step back and allow the democratic base to try their hand at the job?

A question I have is why the DNC, under Schultz, deigned to keep her consultants employed between election cycles. This apparently unprecedented move may have cost us many seats, particularly at the state level, when funding was curtailed so that the DNC could pay their bills. Bills it should be noted that were run up by these same consultants.

Her cheerleading for the Awan family may not be as simple as a satisfied client recommending her favorite computer nerds to other prospective clients. When the SHTF she apparently reacted like a mother bear whose cubs are under attack.
Commendable loyalty to her employees, or perhaps something else.


Consequences / Re: Hurricane season 2017
« on: November 06, 2017, 08:19:03 PM »
I wonder what the background numbers are, for example, for the month before Hurricane Maria. 

I've heard it said that people are dying almost as fast as they are getting born.

Or perhaps one year earlier, if there is a seasonal signal involved.

Consequences / Re: Conservative Scientists & its Consequences
« on: November 06, 2017, 08:15:35 PM »
Because Texas law professors have such a deep understanding of such matters.  8)


Policy and solutions / Re: But, but, but, China....
« on: November 06, 2017, 08:11:21 PM »
Whenever the US is at a competitive disadvantage they make up subsidy and dumping storys.

That's bullshit.  The US is often outpriced on many things.

There's a difference between being priced out and dumping.

Could you please explain the 300% tariff on Canadian Airplanes then?

Permafrost / Re: Arctic Methane Release
« on: November 06, 2017, 07:59:38 PM »

A small, but violent CH4 eruption in Southern Ontario. No gas lines in the area. No landfill sites.

The gas pushed through >20' of heavy clay to make it's way to freedom. If we ever get another real winter here I'll check the ice for methane pockets.

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