The question which begged to be asked!
June 10, 2009 archive
Jun 10 2009
Jun 10 2009
The Guardian reports China launches green power revolution to catch up on the West by 2020. China has set the goal of producing 20 percent of its energy needs from renewable sources in 11 years.
“We are now formulating a plan for development of renewable energy. We can be sure we will exceed the 15% target. We will at least reach 18%. Personally I think we could reach the target of having renewables provide 20% of total energy consumption,” said Zhang Xiaoqiang, vice-chairman of China’s national development and reform commission.
China makes renewable power play to be world’s first green superpower, adds The Guardian.
A game-changing moment could be upon us… This is no short-term economic boost or sop for climate change negotiations; it is a long-term investment aimed at making China a dominant force in the global low-carbon economy for decades to come. Power plays do not come much bigger.
The size of the energy stimulus has not yet been revealed, but reports in the domestic media and from foreign diplomats suggest between 1.4 trillion (US$200 bn) and 4.5 trillion yuan (US$600bn) will be invested over the next ten years in nuclear power plants, solar and wind farms, hydroelectric dams, “green transport”, “clean coal” and super efficient electric grids.
The consequences will be staggering. If the bigger figure proves correct, China will be spending the equivalent of its 2009 military budget on “new energy” for each of the next ten years.
Imagine what the U.S. could have done if it had spent the money it wasted on wars of choice in Iraq and Afghanistan on moving to green energy? Imagine what $607 billion that the U.S. spent on the military in 2008 could do to move the nation to renewable energy.
Meanwhile, McClatchy reports Scientists state Global warming has already changed oceans. U.S. Senators were told by scientists that earth’s oceans “are already changing because of global warming” in a hearing of the oceans subcommittee of the Senate Commerce Committee. Oysters in Washington state have stop reproducing. Shrimp are migrating away from the Gulf of Mexico. The economic toll will be enormous.
The extent of ocean acidification and oxygen-depleted dead zones are alarming. “Federal studies also found acidity levels in the North Pacific and off Alaska are unusually high compared to other ocean regions. The high acidity is already taking a toll of such tiny species as pteropods, which are an important food for salmon and other fish.”
“We must start to realize that there can be no standalone policies, especially as they relate to our water resources,” Alexandra Cousteau said. “Energy, transportation, climate change, infrastructure, agriculture, urban development: this is where our ocean policy must begin. It is all interconnected.”
Four at Four continues with lawsuits forcing torture transparency, Uighurs to Palau, and amphibians in Oregon and around the world are dying off.
Jun 10 2009
It really gets to me, this story of the Chinese Uighers. Wrongly imprisoned (long story), homeless, stateless. Nowhere on the planet will take them in.
On the entire planet. Can you imagine? The whole entire planet!
Until now. Maybe. Because it must still be Backwards Day.
UPDATE: Bermuda takes four, see below.
Another UPDATE: intersting article Uighers face culture shock going to Palau which aso has this hidden tidbit within: “Raxit added that China probably won’t allow the Uighurs’ families to visit or join them, so the men will experience intense isolation and loneliness.”
Jun 10 2009
The American Academy of Environmental Medicine (AAEM) is warning people to avoid genetically modified foods.
This is scary stuff.
They conclude, “There is more than a casual association between GM foods and adverse health effects. There is causation,” as defined by recognized scientific criteria. “The strength of association and consistency between GM foods and disease is confirmed in several animal studies.”
Jun 10 2009
I was walking down the street last night when I happened to glance into the gutter and see something shiny. I bent down and picked it up and took it over to a street lamp and that, combined with the illumination of the moon, gave me enough light to really examine it.
You know what it was? It was America, but this shiny thing was all new! It was, upon close inspection which it appears few have bothered to undertak, a new shiny America without George Bush and with a crippled Republican Party!
I turned it over and over in my hands, trying to understand. It had the same America shape the you see on maps and stuff, but it was totally different! You did have to look closely because the changes….which were undoubtedly there….were still subtle.
Amazingly enough, even in this New America, even without a crazed religious zealot at the helm and even without a Praetorian Guard of Rubber Stamping Religious Zealots (See: Schiavo, Terry) forcing every insane “divinely inspired” whim down the throats of the American People with the help of a Propaganda Arm that basically was a State Information Service dedicated to, as one of its star propagandists put it in a recent speech, denying facts and creating an alternate, fictional, reality:
What Fox did is not just create a venue for alternative opinion. It created an alternate reality.
It seems hardly anyone else has found it though, this shining thing, this new America. Maybe it only exists in possibility still, in potentiality. Maybe I am just dreaming it? It seems real though, I have distinct memories of things changing. But who can really tell in a world where there are, apparently, two warring realities? Is there a new America? Or are we still living in the old one? Am I dreaming? Or is it everyone (but a few) who are still dreaming? Or could it be that we are, at this odd moment, stuck between dream and awakening?
Jun 10 2009
Love Hotels and Religion
A religious corporation that operates “love hotels” concealed 1.4 billion yen in income over seven years through February 2008 as tax-exempt donations from amorous couples, sources said.
The Kanto-Shinetsu Regional Taxation Bureau has ordered Uchu Shinri Gakkai (Space truth academic society) to pay 300 million yen in back taxes and penalties.
Uchu Shinri Gakkai, based in Tadotsu, Kagawa Prefecture, has filed an objection to the order.
“We actually send money to needy children in the country. We’ll fight the tax authorities,” said the 46-year-old president of a company in Chikuma, Nagano Prefecture, that processes and sells mushrooms and vegetables.
The love hotels are apparently run by a 71-year-old former president of the company.
Love, Sex and Religion. What’s a Good Rightwing Republican Religious Crazy To Do?
We Fought The Law
Tens of thousands Tens of thousands were expected to join a massive rally yesterday at Seoul Plaza marking the 22nd anniversary of the June 10 pro-democracy movement despite the disapproval of police and Seoul City.
Defining it as illegal, the police vowed to deal sternly with the rally and crack down on any illicit protests. They planned to dispatch more than 12,000 police officers around Seoul Plaza, the popular assembly site in central Seoul where the 1987 movement took place.
The police and the Seoul Metropolitan Government rejected the plan for the rally, saying the Korea Freedom League, a conservative civic group, filed its request to use the plaza earlier for a separate civil campaign.
Scuffles erupted between the police and those preparing for the event when five trucks tried to enter the plaza to unload equipment and materials that will be used during the rally. During the scuffles, Rep. Lee Jung-hee of the Democratic Labor Party fainted and was taken to a nearby hospital.
And Nobody Won. They Were To Busy fighting
Emily Post Hello
As all visitors to India’s capital discover, despite Delhi’s rickshaws and the traditional black and yellow taxis offering an economical ride, there can also be plenty of drawbacks.
Cleanliness of both vehicle and driver are often uncertain, safety often comes with a question mark and at the end of their journey passengers may often conclude they’ve been well and truly ripped off.
Now, in an effort to boost the image of the “taxiwallahs” and to improve the service they offer, drivers are to receive lessons in road safety, basic English and common courtesy. What’s more, they’re going to get paid to take them.
The lessons are part of a scheme that has been drawn up by the India Tourism Development Corporation in conjunction with the government before next year’s Commonwealth Games. India’s tourism industry draws 3.3 million foreign visitors a year, but the games are expected to bring tens of thousands of new visitors and officials are determined that they leave with a positive image of the country.
Hey You You Call Those Manners
Jun 10 2009
This is awesome, as is usual for Russ.
When you go to Feingold's Senate Site you will see 2 different ways he is letting layman citizens and lawyers/academics give their opinions about this nominee – via his listening sessions and via a special web page set aside for the purpose.
I don't remember him doing this with other nominees, not the web page thing, anyway. I think one good thing that has come about with Obama is it has caused other pols to ramp up their use of the net – of course, as we already know, Russ was pretty net friendly to begin with, but I can see where his net outreach has improved. This is a great thing.
So, if y'all got kudos/complaints about Sotomayer, let Russ know. I don't know enough to say much about her one way or the other with any certainty, but I have a nagging feeling she is not really liberal enough to counteract the RATS.
Jun 10 2009
Muse in the Morning
look upon it as a mirage:
the king of death does not see him
who thus looks down upon the world.
–The Dhammapada, 170
Phenomena XVIII: altering
Jun 10 2009
For the next sixty seconds, this blog will conduct a test of the Netroots Emergency Broadcast System. This is only a test.
Progressives in your area, in voluntary cooperation with the Centers for Disease Control and other mental health authorities, have developed this system to keep you informed in the event of a mental health emergency.
If this had been an actual mental health emergency, you would have been . . .
We interrupt this test to bring you breaking mental health emergency news.
As this chart reveals . . .
a serious mental health crisis is now gripping America. It’s official. Nationwide studies confirm that the brainwave activity of every Republican has flat-lined. Brainwave activity spikes briefly when Republicans feel the urge to yell LIBERAL FASCIST SOCIALISM, but then flat-lines again, until the next time a few Democrats indicate they actually give a flying fuck about average Americans. When this happens, Pavlov’s dog salivates again, a brief brainwave surge occurs somewhere in Republican skulls, and we all have to listen to another outbreak of LIBERAL FASCIST SOCIALISM bellowing.
Jun 10 2009
The shear amount of information uncovered is staggering. Hopefully it will keep your interest.
Let me warm up here with a couple of interesting quotes.
“Gold was not selected arbitrarily by governments to be the monetary standard. Gold had developed for many centuries on the free market as the best money; as the commodity providing the most stable and desirable monetary medium.”
Murray N. Rothbard
Why Gold and Why Now?
“If you don’t trust gold, do you trust the logic of taking a beautiful pine tree, worth about $4,000 – $5,000, cutting it up, turning it into pulp and then paper, putting some ink on it and then calling it one billion dollars?”
Kenneth J. Gerbino
Ever wonder why banks and governments like a paper currency system? Why they fully embraced the Keynesian theory of deficit spending?
“Deficit spending is simply a scheme for the ‘hidden’ confiscation of wealth. Gold stands in the way of this insidious process. It stands as a protector of property rights.”
That one is a classic considering the source.