Got rid of a bunch of gunk, and a truck load of bogus subscribers. From now on if you want to subscribe to Opines, use the widget to your right
Here is a link to pages on biocrude, petroleum manufactured from organic waste. Right now extracting petroleum from the ground is cheaper, so biocrude remains a specialty item. However, as the cost of extracting oil from the ground gets higher there will come a day when biocrude will be cheaper and thus provide more of our mineral oil. What does this mean?
Simple, we’re not going to run out of oil. It will be more expensive, and certain grades and types of oil will be more expensive yet—and items overall will be more expensive, but as long as we have garbage we will have oil.
Let me point out that right now biocrude is pricey, compared to extracted oil. But as extracted oil goes up in price it will make biocrude cheaper to work with in comparison, manufacturing capacity will expand, and society will adjust to the new situation. I suspect that such as windmills and geothermal plants will never take off to any degree, because people won’t see them as necessary.
Until we have a profound advancement in science and technology we are stuck with the internal combustion engine. That’s my production.
We have a bad habit or insisting that we have things well under control. In all truth, we’re basically trying to do a jitterbug in gale force winds. The fact we have a seeming of control, albeit a bad one, is the remarkable thing. Society is forever on the edge of disaster, and calamity can appear almost anywhere.
One of our worst traits is our thinking that any new epidemic is going to either be a new disease, and/or come from some exotic land. It doesn’t occur to our prognosticators that the disease could be an old one, and come from right down the street. Check out the Black Death some time. Americans are still getting it, last I heard about 50 a year. For the most part the victims are successfully treated, but fatalities still occur. At the moment the American west is one of three plague how spots, along with Manchurian and Ethiopia.
Right now bubonic plague is not all that contagious, though it can be deadly. Now imagine a strain of plague that is more contagious, and deadlier. Imagine it arising in an American community without the resources to handle the outbreak, and the disease spreading faster than society can react to it.
Scenario: A farm boy, exploring the land around his family’s farm, runs across a recently dead rodent. Fascinated by his find, he does not spot the fleas that hop on him and take a bit of his blood. He returns home, and a day later develops the buboes typical of the disease. His parents mistake what is happening, so it is a day until they contact their doctor, who sends them to the nearest emergency department. By this time the illness has developed into the Pnuemonic phase, and has spread to the rest of the family.
It spreads further in emergency, and in town as the family handles needed business there. It manifest quickly, and spreads rapidly. As a result by the time the CDC is brought in the epidemic has spread county wide and looks to be fanning out across the country, and later the world. Resources are just overwhelmed.
Up till now we’re been lucky; with few exceptions diseases haven’t really been all that contagious, and when they are extremely contagious they haven’t been all that virulent. Imagine an illness that is both highly contagious and highly virulent. Imagine an epidemic where 99.99% of the population get the disease, and 99.99% of those die of it. Imagine the effect on society and the infrastructure, with transportation and communication breaking down because there’s nobody there to handle it. Imagine fires burning out of control because there is no one to fight them, and many square miles of city going up with heavy losses due to smoke and flame. A population of seven billion reduced to maybe 50 thousand within a decade, if not sooner.
Can’t happen? Correction, it hasn’t happened yet. That doesn’t mean it can’t happen, for we haven’t been through it yet. We have yet to see a disease that contagious, that virulent. But the fact it hasn’t happened is no guarantee it can’t
So be wary around that chipmunk or marmot, and be aware of the signs of plague.
I linked to that because then they’ll get a trackback from me. That way I’ll get in touch with them about their SPAM filter, which is fucking up. You see, they don’t want to hear from you, so they make it impossible to get in touch with them.
What is their difficulty? Their SPAM filter has gotten the impression I SPAM. The folks at Maggies Farm assume their SPAM filter is the voice of God, and so not to be gainsaid. And they don’t have the balls or the energy to check out if the proclamations are true.
In short this tells me you can’t trust them. So once I’m done posting this I’m removing my link to Maggie’s Farm. You want to read it, fine by me; but be careful what you say in a comment because most anything, regardless of how innocuous, will get you labeled a SPAMMER.
It Started With A Step
I am not someone who remembers details well. What I am good at, or so I’ve been told, is getting at the gist of things. So in this essay I hope I’ve gotten the gist of the take right.
In this case our subject is what many call the Singularity. Sometimes the Cybernetic, or Technological, Singularity. An upcoming event which, as I understand it, promises to change humanity utterly, and our world around us. I submit, good reader, that what awaits us is but the latest in a series of Singularities–some major, some minor–which have unalterably changed us and our world. In this work I propose to point out the major Singularities which together made possible the Cybernetic Singularity of the future; and it all started with a birth defect.
Continue reading It Started With a Step
Nose all clogged up, sneezing with regularity, seems I’m got a cold. Am I hoping for a cure for the common cold? Nope, not really. Rhinoviruses mutate faster than an HIV virus with no repair mechanism, and besides, it’s mostly your immune system having an outrageous tizzy every time a rhinovirus comes within a mile of your nares. I’ll recover. And may your sniffles lead to interesting dreams.
The problem of claims in science is that—without proof, no sign of the work—they are worthless. Recently claims that sasquatch DNA had been found. Just a few problems with the claim.
Last I heard no purported bigfoot DNA has yet been released to be tested by third parties.
Claims of human/sasquatch interbreeding have not been verified. Considering how gabby humans tend to be, why no reports of this sort of thing going on?
Dr. Melba S. Ketchum shows no knowledge of the species that came between the common ancestors of humans and chimps. Most recently you had Homo heidelbergensis and h. Antecessor going back chronologically, and others before them. I mean, it’s been about four million years or so.
I suspect contamination of the sample. Or Dr. Ketchum has been the victim of a hoax. Or, the sample she tested does have human DNA, or DNA identified as human, that appeared as our ancestors split off from chimpanzee ancestors. When your family has been around for about 4 million years you can expect a lot of mutating in all that time.
My suspicion? That sasquatch is an australopithecine evolved from the last common ancestor of humans and australopithecines a long time ago. Just consider the subject of the Patterson/Gimlin film (no, I don’t see it as a hoax, that has not been proven), who appears to have the proportions of an australopithecine, and to walk like a australopithecine.
My advice to discoverers?
Let us have the evidence right off. Let a number of people have evidence to test, and make sure we know where you got it and how to get more. And cut out your money making crap, you’ll get tons in speakers fees and writing fees should you turn out to be correct. And remember that is not your sasquatch, it belongs to the world
Soon as I have it set up and ready to go. When it is the blogs and the message board I have set up will disappear a couple of months later; so be sure to update your bookmarks, blog rolls, or links as appropriate when you get word.
Not so fast, it appears that the people who designed the interface for the CMS I was trying out flunked Microsoft interface design, and made it as hard as they possibly could to get things set up. I’ve got news for these people, not everybody has your feeble maladjustment. Some of us like interfaces and set ups that make sense. Ask us what we want to do and show us how to do it. Show, don’t tell.
Years ago, in a fit of pique, I asked to be banned at the Steve Jackson Games forums. Later, thinking the admins would be forgiving, I signed up again under a different name. I was wrong. According to the people I’ve dealt with recently, after I asked to have the ban lifted, they can’t lift that ban because I must have done something truly obscene. They don’t know what it was, they are afraid to find out if, indeed, I had committed any violation of the Terms of Service (TOS), but it must be truly horrible, and, from all indications, Saint Alan Turing will descend from the heavens to lash them with fire and sword were they to so much as idly muse about lifting the ban.
Darryll, my correspondent at sjgames, has shown he is not to be trusted. SJgames, by employing him as forum admin, has shown they are not to be trusted. Which is a shame because Munchkin is a good game, and GURPS has some excellent source books. Below the fold you will find my last correspondence with Darryll. SJGames email has been declared SPAM and I will not be hearing from them,
Continue reading Oh What an Adamant Soul
Just caught up on the news of the shootings in Conneticut. Am I saddened? Very much so. But more disappointed. Disappointed in that people are calling for a firearms ban in this country, or firearms control. It won’t work.
This is a big country, most Americans can’t say they really know the place. Getting the 50 states plus the territories and the commonwealths to agree really isn’t going to work. Then you have the matter of a Federal law. One problem, the 2nd Amendment. The US Supreme Court would slap down the law faster than a man slaps down a mosquito.
And such laws would do nothing to block the access of firearms. We’ve got tons of them lying around, and it really isn’t all that hard even now to get an illegal weapon. Besides, people have gone on killing sprees using blades, garden tool, fireplace tools, and a number of others. Whether killed by a firearm or a golf club, the victim is still as dead.
The problem here is our mental health system. Thanks to court decisions over the years the system has become reluctant to hospitalize the severely mentally ill, unless or until they demonstrate that they are an immediate danger, or they inform a mental health worker that they feel an immediate danger to society and/or themselves. We have carried the matter to an unviable extreme.
Then you have health insurance. They say they won’t pay for hospitalization, so the patient gets discharged before he’s ready. I say fuck the insurance companies. If an individual is not ready for the outside world, he stays in the hospital. His insurance company don’t like it, that insurance company can take a long walk on a short pier with weights in the pants. We are in dire need of insurance reform.
This inconveniences people I say “Good.” Sometimes people need to be inconvenienced, reminded they aren’t alone in the world and that they are not special flowers the world revolves around.
That’s my position. Yours?