Society never advances. It recedes as fast on one side as it gains on the other…. Not in time is the race progressive.
A Fox, A Dog, And The Birth Of A Cause
Courtesy of A Tramp Abroad, here’s an amazing story that almost reads like a fairy tale.
Can the friendship between a Norwegian dog and a wild fox stop the fur trade?
Pretty good translation: A dog enjoyed an idyllic life together with his owner, Torgeir Berge, in the Norwegian forests. One day while they walked together in the woods, they encountered a wild fox named Sniffer. [How did they know the fox’s name?] Despite thousands of years of breeding inequalities and the social circumstances that stood between them, they became best friends.
Berge follows the two unlikely friends around while they jump and play together in the woods. Luckily, he brought his camera to capture their beautiful friendship.
The way the two friends are playing reminds us that wildlife, which many of us fear or do not respect, can be far more similar to our domesticated animals than we previously thought.
The experience changed Berge’s view of Norway’s fur trade. Now he wants to help ban the hunting of foxes for their fur. He hopes to do this by publishing a book with author Berit Helberg on the duo’s adventures.
Ukraine: These Three Observations Are All You Need
Russia has a legitimate and vital interest in maintaining control of its only warm-water seaport, and can not reasonably be expected to look with equanimity on the overthrow of a democratically elected government in Ukraine. All large nations consider the smaller countries on or near their borders obliged to mind their manners. For well over a century, that has been the (usually boorish, often inept and embarrassing) policy of the USA in Latin America. It is also the historical policy of France and Spain in North Africa, China in Southeast Asia, and Great Britain in Europe. Russia would be insane not to insist that Ukraine remain not just friendly, but compliant. Those who encourage Ukraine to chart an independent course, ignoring Russian interests, are irrational.
Given that Obama and Kerry are running the USA, what in the world did you expect Russia would do, other than see to its vital interests?
“Vladimir Putin knows that words of warning from Barack Obama mean nothing at all. The only people who have any reason to fear retaliation on the part of the President of the United States are the man’s domestic opponents.” Source.
It’s a matter of cultural and political hubris:
Through the rose tinted lenses of a media community deeply convinced that President Obama and his dovish team are the masters of foreign relations, nothing poor Putin did could possibly derail the stately progress of our genius president. … We blame this in part on the absence of true intellectual and ideological diversity in so much of the academy, the policy world and the mainstream media. Most college kids at good schools today know many more people from different races and cultural groups than their grandparents did, but they are much less exposed to people who think outside the left-liberal box. (Source; read the entire commentary.)
Says a weblogger: “Note that both Sarah Palin and Mitt Romney got this right, and were called idiots by box-dwellers”. Being scolded like that has to be very embarrassing, though of course no “progressive” will admit to ever having to cope with that emotion.
Here is wisdom. Forget the Idiot of Foggy Bottom and his delusional handler, and memorize the following:
Russia is a crap country full of poor drunks run by KGB thugs. It just happens to produce the most beautiful women in the world — until they turn 35. The Ukraine is another crappy country run by thugs. Should I — or Obama — really care what these people do? I can find no reason to care, but I do feel for all of the people in the world who are living in crappy places with crappy and corrupt governments with delusions of grandeur. It’s the norm. (Source.)
Dispatches From A Tramp Abroad
Hawai’i shows lower Fukushima radiation levels than expected. So, big deal. They are measuring Cesium, which they note has a half-life of 50 days. Just for argument’s sake, let’s assume 350 days in a year. That means that any given cesium atom will have decayed to 1/2^7 or 1/128th of its original radioactivity level. Shouldn’t they be measuring plutonium, uranium, etc., which have much longer half-lives?
George Soros is making headlines in Germany. Due to a book (actually a long interview by Gregor Peter Schmitz from Der Spiegel) that has been published, titled “Wetten auf Europa — warum Deutschland den Euro retten muß, um sich selbst zu retten” (Betting on Europe — Why Germany Must Save The Euro In Order To Save Itself). Soros wants to meet with Merkel, presumably to discuss this topic and convince her, but according to the program this evening on TTT (Titel Thesen Temperamente), she has not yet answered his call. If I can get it for a decent price (download to my Kindle), I may read it. Otherwise, I will have to wait until it comes out in paperback. Links for the book: One, Two; links for Soros: Three and Four.
German job hunting advert goes viral. Here’s their real website. Jobs in Town is a website dedicated to those who are hunting for a new job. Creative yet provocative. I wonder what their success rate is.
Ukraine and the “Little Cold War” according to StratFor: I like the analysis.
Are the Koch brothers stealing the electoral college? (“Exclusively” does not mean “Primarily”.)
Ah, here’s some nice news for a change. It’s uplifting to read some positive news once in a while. Maybe we ought to have a TV channel that reports only congenial news.
Mankind’s Final Invention: Artificial Intelligence and the End of the Human Era. Maybe the end is nearer than we think….
At long last, some human compassion! Is the “good” we get from using animals for testing of products and medicines for humans really worth the pain and suffering that is inflicted on the animals?
Kissinger on the Ukraine crisis. This sounds reasonable to me.
She’s the most multi-lingual person I have ever seen. Not a Germanophile, obviously.
I have been working with and for Canadians for nearly 15 years now. (My boss is Canadian.) In the last 15 years, I have probably made at least as many trips to Canada as I have to the USA — possibly more. In general, I find Canadians much easier to work with and more friendly than my US colleagues. Of course, it’s my bias.
This is how English sounds to foreign ears. (This gets a “highly recommended” tag from the philology wonks on the NTG’s editorial staff. They claim it’s “deliciously, revealingly absurdist”. Snucking fobs.)
Now this is a turn of the table! I reckon anyone can be a legionnaire anywhere these days. Note: I propose to redefine the word legionnaire to refer to a soldier who is paid to fight, but is not willing to fight for whatever side offers him the most money; he is, in a sense, a kind of bodyguard, or a member of a security detachment provided by a contractor. A legionnaire chooses his employer on both ethical and financial grounds, while a mercenary is motivated only by money.
From A Tramp Abroad: A Conversation About Life, Liberty, And Death
Contrary to popular belief, Facebook is not all bad. Depending on one’s circle of friends, it is possible to observe and learn from some lively, yet civilized discussions about what is going on in the world. My Afghan-American friend posted a short message, which resulted in responses from his friends from all over the world. Even though nearly all of them have strong opinions and convictions about the matter, you will notice that there is virtually no mud-slinging, name-calling, swearing or similar besmirching in this feisty round-table discussion. I made the participants anonymous to protect their identities. (Being that my friend is of Afghan heritage, it’s understandable that he voiced his opinion that the Ukrainians could resist the Russians.) Anyhow, it is refreshing to see how reasonable and educated people from around the world can have a lively conversation without coming to fisticuffs.
MM: If Ukrainians want…they can resist the Russians and fight but it will take many many years and many many lives.
JED: That is not the wisest course of action – -Russia is too powerful
AH: It will be just daydreaming. Going down that road will take many many years and many many lives to realize that there’s nothing to be done. Russians enjoy huge popularity and support on the ground. That’s not the way out of the hole that the EU and the US dug themselves in. See the post on my wall.
MM: oh, i’m not saying its the best course of action but if they had the support of the majority of the population…they could win. and if they had the resolve of fighting until 1 or 2 million die in the fight. no occupying force can stay forever.
MM: but i dont think its smart of them to try and fight.
AH: Except that Russians are not, ethnically speaking, an occupying force in Crimea. Crimea was Russian till the late ’50s and it was “gifted” to Ukraine – a move with which many people in Crimea disagree. Plus, the majority of the population there is ethnic Russian.
NW: But you cannot just go and occupy and claim a country/people back like this. Pukin needs to come to his senses. Another idiotic war that calls for NATO alliances? NOT!
AH: Of course you are right, but Putin will not “claim” the country. It will all be orchestrated so that it is “kosher” by the very own criteria of the US. The distressed and oppressed ethnic Russians in Kosovo/..sorry, Crimea will organize a referendum, and being such a huge majority,the result will be clear.. Kosovo… sorry, Crimea will declare unilaterally independence from Serbia.. sorry.. Ukraine and we will live happily ever after, hoping that the US recognizes the “Will of the Crimean people” just as they did with the “Will of the Kosovo People”(tm)
ST: … standing ovation.
AL: A, I think you are missing some key points..Mainly that independence is not being offered on the March 30 Referendum in Crimea just greater autonomy within Ukraine which will be enough to offer Russia greater influence over Crimea without actually having to annex it into the Russian Federation…Russia will not formally take over Crimea because…1..It will inflame Tatar Muslims who are normally placid, Putin is not about to take Crimea so it can turn into another Chechnya…2…Putin doesn’t need to take Crimea to get more autonomy over the Naval Base and Sevastopol, greater independence for the Crimean Council within Ukraine can get him that…3… Most importantly Putin will not take an action that will put him at a disadvantage in the relationship with Ukraine because do you realize that ALL of Crimea’s electricity comes from Mainland Ukraine and All of its water from the Kahkovlas Reservoir on the Dnieper River and down the North Crimea Canal?…What you think Putin will annex Crimea only then to have to negotiate with Kiev to buy power and water for 2 million new Russian/Crimean citizens?…
AL: Basically Russia is allowed 25,000 troops legally in Ukraine under the Naval Base Agreement…there were only 14800 before and now with the arrival of reinforcements there are 17000 troops. Russia will only keep them on the streets to persuade Kiev to accept the results of the Crimean Referendum on March 30 and to dissuade Ukraine from sending troops to Crimea to nullify the referendum results….when Kiev accepts greater autonomy for Crimea then Russian troops will return to their barracks at the Naval Base in Sevastopol.
Questions The Cultists Do Not Ever Answer
How much carbon dioxide is there in the air? How much of that is due to human activity? What impact can various reductions of anthropogenic CO2 have on climate?
Don’t ask a warmer. He will ignore your queries and lecture you on “consensus”; then he will try to burden you with guilt, all the while cursing you as a “denier” (implying that you are as evil as those who insist the Nazis were not guilty).
Here, however, you have the answers — and their implications.
Right now, there might be as much as 400 ppm of CO2 in the air. (Four hundred parts per million.) It’s probably a bit lower than that, but be pessimistic.
————— = ———
So in two thousand five hundred litres of air you have one litre of CO2. (Less than that, actually; let it go.)
Now estimates for anthropogenic CO2 vary from about 2.5% of the total atmospheric CO2 up to over 4%. Once again, be pessimistic and misanthropic, and say five percent of all atmospheric CO2 is caused by humans and their technology. Five percent means one-twentieth; to keep things at 1 for CO2, multiply the denominator by twenty.
So one litre of CO2 in every fifty thousand litres of air is due to mankind. That means literally that one fifty-thousandth of the atmosphere is driving ferocious extremes of climate.
Yes, that’s the lunatic claim made by Gore’s cult. The warmers blame the drought in California and the killer winter in the central and eastern USA and nasty weather in Great Britain and storms in the oceans and hurricane Katrina and all uncomfortable weather on CO2 produced by humankind. They insist that if we can just cut back on burning carbon, the climate will return to “normal”. And what, pray tell, is normal? People have been complaining about the weather since people arrived on earth; normal includes everything from ideal to disastrous.
Through it all, do remember that the warmers don’t claim to be able to do anything about any CO2 in the air other than that produced by human activity. Give that a minute or two to sink in!
Next: how much can CO2 emissions be reduced? If you cut back insanely — stop burning all coal, destroy one quarter of the vehicles that are driven by Otto cycle engines, shut down one third of all industrial plants, outlaw clambakes and campfires — could humanity’s carbon dioxide emissions be cut by twenty percent? Probably not, but assume some villains kill a few hundred million people (thereby preventing them from exhaling CO2), and then assume that after all that, humanity’s output of CO2 were reduced by forty percent. That should make Al Gore and Jim Hansen happy, eh?
All right, if one makes those bizarre assumptions, draconian measures can be said to be able to reduce anthropogenic CO2 to sixty percent of its current levels (leaving all other atmospheric CO2 undiminished). Sixty percent of 1 is .6, so humanity’s guilt would drop from one litre of CO2 in every fifty thousand litres of air to one litre of CO2 in every eighty thousand litres of air. (Remember: there is currently one litre of CO2 produced by all causes in every two thousand five hundred liters of air.)
Finally, there is a crucially important mechanism that is never mentioned by the AGW cultists. Inducing climate cooling by forcing people to reduce the production of carbon dioxide is complicated by that pesky logarithmic effect (mentioned in NTG 323).
Perhaps a bit more ink should be spilled on this concept of logarithmic change.
Imagine that you have a laboratory that has a sealed chamber and heat lamps, so you can conduct experiments with carbon dioxide and temperature. You fill the chamber with pure nitrogen and heat it; then, when the temperature has stabilized, you add X amount of carbon dioxide and don’t turn up the lamps. The gases in the chamber rise in temperature by 2 degrees, so you add another X amount of CO2 — and measure less than one degree of increase in the temperature of the gases. You add another X amount of CO2, and the increase in heat is almost not measurable. As the amount of carbon dioxide in the chamber increases, you have to add much greater quantities of it to the nitrogen in order to get the same increase in temperature you got the first time.
Put metaphorically but simply: the further you go, the harder it becomes to go the same distance each time you start up again.
It’s certain Al Gore would not agree to that. That’s because it has tremendous implications not just for climate warming, but for cooling, as well. The more total CO2 there is in the atmosphere, the less will be the impact on temperature caused by any change, up or down, in the amount of carbon dioxide in the air.
Al would be horrified to learn that the warming caused by the addition to the atmosphere of one litre — or one ton, or a million tons — of CO2 varies according to how much CO2 is already present in the air.
Well, don’t fret. He won’t learn that simple truth, because he would not allow himself to understand it if he knew it existed. Why? Because he’s a cult leader and a carbon offsets marketer!
If the relevant facts are properly presented, a new perspective is gained. It becomes easy to see that drastic — no, catastrophic — reduction of humanity’s CO2 emissions is small beer, when it comes to influencing the climate.
Devastating: Satan and psychiatry. Highest possible recommendation.
Oh, my: Iran. If only the USA had a wise and determined government….
“Palestinians”, Israelis, and Obama: oh, my, my!
The proverbial tip of the iceberg. It’s interesting that a major media outfit exposed this. No, the interesting tidbit just rendered visible does not imply any seismic changes.
Diabetes can impair healing, making cuts and scrapes dangerous. Results of what strikes this newsletter as belated research suggest that electricity can promote healing of wounds. Perhaps memory does not serve, but wasn’t this investigated and demonstrated many years ago? Science often proceeds according to trends and fashions, ignoring promising results of research.
This is about as goofy as anything can get: at UCLA, a student organization voted down an anti-Israel motion, and one of the proponents of the measure threw a fit. It’s on video, and bizarre is not a strong enough word for it. If you can understand a single word this female utters, you qualify for a fifty per cent reduction in the price of your NTG subscription. Then too, it’s amazing that no one in the room poured a bottle of expensive drinking water over her head, slapped her a few times, and got the response, “Thanks, I needed that”. (Commentary here, along with the video.) It’s clear that the Jew-haters had better work on their self-control, or they are going to have a hard time making friends and influencing people. Grace under pressure, troops! You know, like the dignified demeanor of Eichmann throughout his trial.
Michelle The O has to have her cause, of course. After all, Hillary had “Suppress the bimbo explosion”, so….
It’s long, but it’s possibly just your cup of tea: “Journalism After Snowden”, a video of a discussion at Columbia University dealing with news, secrets, and frustrated spooks. Some would say it deals with the true roots of fascism. Others would say it promotes treasonous ideas that inspire criminal subversion. More important than all that: can’t somebody force Jill Abramson, executive editor of the NY Times, to get speech therapy? Somehow this excruciatingly irritating female, speaking in a slow, whining sing-song that winds on, sinuous, unrelenting, never pausing, defending the pulpit against all rivals by simply going on, somehow managing to inhale while speaking, transforming periods and semicolons into commas — this perpetual motion utterance-creation machine has managed to reduce the verbal tic “You know” to “yeow”, for which insult to English she will probably be isolated from all the other shades in Hades, lest she corrupt their elocution, however primitive it might already be. — The rest of the video is a recapitulation of the media’s narcissistic celebration of the lofty intellectual distinctions and pronouncements the Platonic philosopher-kings of the press condescend to convey to you, the befuddled artisans and tillers of the soil. What ever would you do without your betters?
Here’s the open secret. Don’t let on that you know it, or you’ll be savaged for having politically incorrect thoughts….
The Democrat-controlled Senate can’t stomach an Obama nominee, and Harry Reid whines about it (if you clicked on “whines”, you wound up in Moonie territory, so just watch the video). The approaching election could turn Congress over to the GOP; accordingly there’s a lot of nervousness in the federal government. Even Holder is said to be thinking about getting out, or maybe he’s planning to stay. Washington is a sideshow at the fair, complete with carny barkers and rubes.
Reprinted from Today in Liberty, the newsletter of United Liberty: “Reason’s March issue now online: In case you’re not a subscriber (and you should be), Reason magazine has put its full March issue online. The issue takes a look at outdated medical regulations, arguments for the drug war, and much, much more.” Yes. And you can sign up for the TIL newsletter here; click on the blue “Join Our Mailing List >” box that’s on the right side of the screen.
A visit to the monkey house at the zoo: Harry Reid talks about Obamacare.
“…(Arabs in and near Israel) are still engaging in a pseudo-national fantasy about Israel’s disappearance or destruction”. True, unfortunately. A two-state response to the difficulty is not a solution — it’s an insane notion.
Here’s a speech on firearms. The format is a bit…well, silly, but listen to the statistics, the logic, the reasons — and the accusations. Highly recommended.
The IRS is still at it. The thugs know who the boss is, and they lust to give him what he wants. So a Congressman is trying to set things right by dealing with a first-class rascal, who says she ain’t gonna help, no way. Ye gods….!
Pelosi explains it all to you. Not recommended.
This article on heroin use in a small Vermont town makes clear that law enforcement is virtually worthless to those who oppose illegal drugs. That’s a tacit but unproclaimed admission that prohibition is a failure. The next step would be the realization that prohibition is also insanely expensive. Eventually the Powers That Be might wonder whether better ways of coping with human frailty, impatience, and selfishness can be devised. Progress is maddingly slow….
Very odd, when you realize what it is: beavers in Britain. A puzzle, an historic moment, and an opportunity.
This newsletter missed a disgraceful caper staged by Boxer and Waxman. It’s probably news to you, as well. Sure, this might not be the gatekeepers deliberately under-reporting something the electorate should know. Maybe NTG was just asleep.
It seems that China needs a Celestial equivalent of the Second Amendment. How else can crowds of shoppers defend themselves from, and thereby discourage, attacks by knife-wielding Muslim fanatics?
Folks in the USA can be forgiven for wondering whether any good can come of a fight between two scoundrels. What happened to the Good Guys? Did they all decamp to Monaco?
The masthead includes a quote from the works of R. W. Emerson.
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