Thursday, June 30, 2016

The Tortures of Tort
Some thoughts on considerations of the sale of PDI to HydroOne

Much has been made about the sale of PDI to HydroOne recently. Most astounding to me is that there is not an established opinion on the effect this sort of deal has had on other communities. Have they benefited or not ? Do they not discuss it because they are bound by the sale contracts ? Why isn't this commonly known already ?

Firstly, I consider that no matter who 'owns' the hydro, the rates are generally set by the OEB, an arms length organization that is meant to liaise between HydroOne (or the provider) and the consumer to cater to the interests of both. This means that no matter who owns the utility, the rates are generally not set by the owner.

Secondly, we should consider that HydroOne would have NO interest in the sale/purchase if it wouldn't fatten their bottom line. This corporation has ONE motivation at its core and it is not to deliver the highest quality-lowest cost service to users. They are not interested in doing this to help the people of the city, no matter how emphatically they might present this pretense.

Finally, some basic accounting comes into play; So far we have spent hours of time and thousands of dollars to 'evaluate' the sale (in spite of popular opinion). This will go on ,and go through appeals, and on and on, until or unless we agree to sell. At the end of the day, if we decide not to, under trade laws like the TPP, etc., we could be forced to pay for HydroOne's losses from not "doing our part" to help their profits.

So when we consider that saying no to the sale will result in countless consultations (paid to be done outside the city), countless arbitration and suit after suit to prop up the sale... and then when we consider that HydroOne might sue us for infringing their rights to buy up every asset in the province - it is easy to see how saying "no" will be the least cost-effective solution for the citizens moving forward. THIS WILL, NO DOUBT, HEAVILY INFLUENCE THE CONCLUSIONS OF THE CONSULTANTS WE'VE NOW HIRED. Maybe it's all about more than today's bottom line though.

The only way to really protect this precious public asset from profiteering is to be emphatic. Will the sale produce some $50 Million up-front and a million every year thereafter ? Probably. Will this be a fraction of the long-term value of these assets. Probably. How will they city cope if HydroOne faces a disaster in some far-off place and we, in Peterborough, are forced to pay for it in increased rates (something we are, more or less, safer from today through city ownership)? Twenty years from now when our children cannot afford the price of these essential services, will the big-wigs in the Big Smoke, running HydroOne hear our plight ? How will local actions impact hydro decisions in the future if the people in charge are hundreds of miles away and buffered by millions of (our) dollars and armys of lawyers ? What leg will we have to stand on when the corporation, not the people, own the assets ?

When the founders of the area and the utility built this Electric City up, for pennies on the hour, do you think it was with an eye to one day selling out to massive corporate interests with a strong profit motive and little regard for the community - or did they hope for something more for us all ? Too often privatization takes assets from the public and then makes the public pay a premium for something they already, and by a right ought to have, owned.

Just look at the internet today. Public dollars developed it in research labs. The public made it big by creating a network of BBS services running out of peoples basements. Now go and try and get an internet connection from someone outside the big three providers and tell me how that goes. Astonishingly each of these companies charges pretty much the same exorbitant rate for something that costs almost zero to produce. There are more examples, but the main point here is that without serious commitment to the cause, we're going to lose ownership of our hydro services. Once that happens you can expect them to stop using any lube at all.

image through from: the warmonger blog:


Friday, March 18, 2016

WORKING on The Moon


Whenever it is that we begin an earnest effort of colonization on our Moon, it will represent one of the few times that a completely new nation has been formed on a geographic region within the legal framework of modern times. 

the trail of tears is certainly one colonial example where the requirements
for qualification were low and the participation rates were high

Historically we can point to many examples of colonization where the consequences have been dire for the native peoples of said lands. All through Europe and Asia scores of peoples, indeed whole cultures, have severally been conquered, invaded and completely subjugated. In modern times there are some glaring examples of imperial/colonial policy as well. Russia, America and others redrew many maps and displaced many peoples throughout the cold war. Today we can see something similar (but uniquely new and different on it's own merits) in the middle-east again, whole peoples being uprooted and moved about. 

All this is just to say that the idea of colonizing lands "without sufficient contract", so that we should feel any need to be bothered with the legalities of the domain we intend to enter - exist already. In fact it might be fair to say that most of todays mass migrations are happening quite in-spite of existing legal barriers, but that is a discussion for another time entirely. 

this map is one example where colonization has proceeded on mass
in spite of native opposition and a lack of legal procedures allowing
it on behalf of those affected. If this can happen here, shouldn't it be
even easier to colonize a place with no such natives or legal barriers
i.e. the moon ?

So what does this mean for The Moon ?

When we look at large migrations historically there seem to be two main streams of action for the exodus'

a) people are sent as punishment (very little licensing is required on the part of the affected, vocational requirements are low. individuals are drafted. of those drafted very few are refused)

b) people go as a reward or to pursue social increase. (licensing and fees are required on the part of those migrating, vocational requirements are mid-upper tier. Individuals apply or volunteer. Of those who fulfill the applications, many are approved)

Military mobilization also seems to follow these lines. When requirements are low - barriers to entry are higher. When the situation becomes desperate more and more qualifications are reduced - up to the point that non-volunteers might even be drafted. 

don't worry kid, you're gonna straighten this whole Nazi's taking
over Europe shite straight out, okay ?

These examples of military recruitment, mass migrations and prisoner deportation are instructional when considering colonization efforts because they represent the maximum in human logistics up to this point. We have not yet engaged any policy or action of mass-exo-planetary-colonization so we must needs look at examples that are similar on our own Earth first. 


There is an obvious correlation between acceptance of applicants and ready demand for said applicants. So herein, let's take a look at two types of demand - and please feel welcome to offer up others in the comments below. 

1) postive - primary:economic incentive // secondary:planetary defence

2) negative - primary:population relief // secondary:aggressive expansion (economic, territorial as a precurson to 1-p

In the positive stream there are a couple obvious paths. One being economic. If the moon had been discovered to be made of silver or "conflict minerals" there would likely have already been some greater efforts at colonizing the place. If we discover that there are minerals in space whose sales can justify the cost of initial exploitation - we are much more likely to pursue it, Under these circumstances there are still several factors that can influence the rates of migration.

-size of commodity stores
-ease of access
-available transit spacecraft
-available demand for commodity

here is one example of a situation with a reasonable amount of need
but extremely minimal colonial effort. cost-effective, but slightly insane.
very high barriers-to-entry at LunarIndustries I'm afraid

If all these can be said to be 'high' then migration restrictions would likely be low. Procedures for access would focus more on training than screening, for example. When we want participation, we are inclined to provide training and create barriers to entry that are the opposite of restrictive. 

If these factors can be said to be 'low' then the processes of selection are likely to be very restrictive. 

For example; in instances of 'high' factoring; only the most basic requirements of 
-functional health
-familiarity with technology
-comfort with spaceflight and operations

would be mandated. A person who is going to spend most of their time working a pick-axe and carrying rocks isn't going to need to be a PhD in human habitation technology. Obvious safety training would need to be completed, etc., still, but on the main, genereal labour jobs in space could be available to the same basic people who they are already on Earth.

In instances of 'low' factoring; requirements can be tightened extremely;

-excellent physical conditioning
-high literacy, numeracy and educational accomplishment
-some accredited medical/chemical handlers training 
-extreme proficiency with technology
-comfort under extreme stress situations

This is only a cursory example, but it is plain enough to see (once considered) that there is a great deal of flexibility in the effort itself. Vocational training is something that is seriously under-appreciated in our present society, but many, many corporations currently operate internal training apparatus that are required for job advancement, etc already. Just to say that someone might study veterinary math in college, but then end up working as a manager in an electronics store - where they will discover that as smart as they are they must still be trained and tested on internal policy - testing which someone without a BS degree might also, reasonable, be able to accomplish as well. 

just another astronaut farmer. barrier-to-entry for
illegal home-based space programs are examples of present-day
low restriction systems (forclosure, imprisonment, death)

Indeed some of the greatest successes in American capitalism already are people who began menial jobs in organizations, but through vocational training were able to rise to the heights of executive management within their domains. 


It is not hard to see that the decision between low and high barriers to entry comes down to two deciding factors. 

1) the NEED for people to go

2) our EFFORT to send them

There are several mixes of these two notions however

a) NEED high, EFFORT low. - let us consider that we are, in the future, facing a severe shortage of H20 on the planet because of atmospheric attrition; let us also assume, however, that because of pre-existing legislation and cost-to-entry problems we are taking little action. In this example, even though there is some significant and legitimate demand, barriers are kept high. Educational (and therefore also financial) requirements are significant on the part of the applicant, low percentages of applicants are even considered, etc.

b) NEED high, EFFORT high - let us assume here that in the future there is a severe overpopulation problem. the effort from the governments of the Earth is high in response. suddenly it is very clear to see how quickly and severely the barriers to entry would be changed. In teh instance of a true biological pandemic the only barrier may be infection (whether we send them or leave them is not herein resolved). Either way it is an example of non-economic incentive and response.

c) NEED low, EFFORT low - this is basically where we are today. In almost all instances where the efforts towards colonization are low the barriers are high. In our present-day situation where no need is perceived as well, the barriered are extremely extreme. Even within the decade-delayed Virgin Galactic program, the financial barrier is still significant. There exists several plans to send some civilians for free through lottery systems, but again this bespeaks the barriers to entry if everyone on the planet can enter and only one is selected - the odds being some 7+Billion : 1 in this instance. 

d) NEED low, EFFORT high - this is similar to the situation in the Apollo era. We didn't really need to go (though some could argue this was plainly not the case as the cold-war demanded escalation of space efforts and I appreciate that position) for any direct practical purpose. We did not, for example, build an American military base on the moon to establish supremacy for the next century over the Soviets (at least not publicly). So while there may have been a military reason that was higher than presented - in general people were told they were going "To do stuff that is extrordinarily hard for no reason - to climb the mountain because it's there". We perhaps forget that the program was so presented as civil and exploratory even if there was an underlying reason in the cold-war. 

Okay, who's excited about their new life in
the beautiful "Australian colonies" ?!
*always read the terms and conditions of cruise-package contests

So what we can see here is that unless the efforts are increased, it does not matter if the need is large or small. Indeed, if learning about the powers of intention has taught me anything it is that our focus can largely determine our reality. So as long as we perceive low need, there will be low effort and thus high barriers-to-entry will remain. 


In the above example, both situations of high need were negative examples that led to much greater effort than we see today. Obvious parallels can be drawn between these examples and the English experiments with colonization of Canada and Australia. Population density-to-resources were high, the laws were very tight, people were sent to colonies for punishment. High need was created, and high effort was provided. 

Some unfortunate examples that can create a high need AND high effort for us to get into space are outlined here:

-predicted meteor impact
-ocean acidification
-disease epidemic
-severe natural disaster (volcanism, techtonic shifting, etc)
-alien invasion
-extreme criminality
-extreme wealth disparity
-technological ascension 
-extreme weather phenomena
-genetic mutation

Some positive examples of high need creating high effort are outlined here;

-golden meteor passing
-educational ascension
-technological dissemination 
-peaceful exploration
-extreme recreation
-planetary over-achievement 
-identification of rare resources
-alien contact / interaction / trade

So we can see that the negative incentives somewhat appear to outweigh the positive ones. Positive incentives being largely restricted to economic increase or population overdevelopment (either in number or success).

When we look at these outlines, we can see that the one, likely, marketable incentive that is positive is the "golden meteor". To my mind, this is one of the largest incentives. The meteor could be water, gold, silver, or something even more exotic; we should be, today, positioning ourselves for this in my opinion. As a follow-up to this article I will provide some numbers and some insight into the current meteor-capture ventures and information that is extant today. 

instead of destroying my world, this meteor will feed my people for a generation,
mwahahahahahaaaa !!

That being said I should also like to revisit the fact that most of the incentives were negative. This indicates that it is highly probable that at some point in the future - if we choose not to pursue easy access as a policy now, that we will one day. If we do not reasonably introduce these concepts to people today they may find themselves woefully underqualified for one of the most needed and productive vocations of tomorrow. We should already be trying to live like we're working to qualify for a mission in space that will save the race or planet, because every day it seems to get a little closer to a time when we just might need a fwe boatloads of people like that. 

When we consider that the people who signed up for a one-way to Mars might be some of the same people who would sign up for a one-way to a meteor on a suicide run to save the planet ala Armageddon... maybe these types of efforts are almost worthy of some serious consideration and financial donation by the people who are responsible for our collective good.  I'm not saying that people who sign up for MarsOne or any of these things should be compensated directly, only that perhaps it's almost time that out colleges and universities all start trying to reasaonble prepare us for lives that consist of more than just taking care of the indigent and needy on a day-by-day basis. Band-aid solutions have become the norm now. Lets begin to aspire again, shall we ? 

In the fictional film armageddon we see that when needs are perceived as HIGH
the response can be astounding, in the film they train a bunch of rag-tags
in a couple weeks and launch two shuttles at once !!!
In real life we scrapped the shuttle because the 1 in 10,000 chance of
another failure was greater than any perceived need. 

Wednesday, January 27, 2016

Running out of word-combinations & The Hollywood Remake Cycle

The great linguistic shortage of 2123

I remember when I was young, on the bus to highschool; saying to a person beside me that 'one day we will run out of ideas for movies and just start remaking old movies with new people'. At the time I was startled by the prescience of my discovery. It made complete logical sense to me that at some point, probably within my lifetime, we'd see more and more remakes of old movies. 

Though I didn't realize it at the time, it was an already not unheard-of practice. Tremendous classics ( that had often even started as radio plays ) had already be remade in several instances. Miracle on 34th Street, for example.

""Macy's department store declined any involvement with this remake, so the fictitious "Cole's" was used as its replacement. Gimbels had gone out of business in 1987; hence it was replaced by the fictional "Shopper's Express""

[[Already here we can see the medium revealing much more protectionist dis-interest on the part of the big corporations that had survived to the first 'hollywood remake cycle'. Very few companies survive to 100 years in the history of the world. After that the decrease in surviving businesses in exponential to where there are only about 2000 companies in the Western world that are 200+. Obviously in America this is quite rare aside from Banks and Petrolium Co's]]

However, even though the practice was not unheard of, it was far from a normative part of the Hollywood offerings as it is today. It seems that today, all you have to do is recast a movie that did well in the past and voila ! The truckloads of cash start rolling in. While I have enjoyed some of the remakes that have been produced, I have not particularily found that the practice holds much legitimacy to me. For example, one might hope that with such a re-make culture in the movies, there would be obvious and notable improvements in the story, casting selections or whatnot. Too often the only improvement is the quality of the CGI work - which has certainly advanced to tremendous levels. 

As someone who takes a more broadly cultural interest in cinema, I find the trend disturbing. We all know the old maxim that 'the medium is the message', well I cannot think of a more apt use of it than in consideration of this re-make culture we have at the cresting of the 21st century. 

When we examine the classics, we see strong and often (now) offensive themes. These movies are great because in many instances they actually spurned people into thinking about important cultural issues in new ways, or acted as a great artistic catharsis for a popular sub-cultural niche'. Watching them in reflection, we can also see the changes that have manifest in our own day, and make some insightful judgements about the validity of our notions of progress, etc. 

Today, American films seem concerned with absolutely no such pretence. Movies are too often, simply "vehicles" to get the starts and producers from the cozy life of a film-set to the cozy visits with their banker friends. 

While I certainly appreciate the plethora of opportunities that the film industry provides the serfs, both in edu-tainment value and spending of production budgets; I am herein only trying to address the shift from focusing on hard stories to the strictest sense of absolute motivation for profit. 


Many interesting movies have also emerged over this era. Movies that may purport to rebuff my thesis here; The Interview, Three Kings, Syriana, An Inconvienent Truth, The Insider,... it can be said of all these films that they represent new expressions of thought based on events that did not previously exist wherein to even be  expressed, etc; the basic idea here being that there are still some new and hard-hitting productions which receive wide acclaim and commercial success while maintining integrity that I percieve as lacking. Also there have been several interesting and completely new works to emerge like Fight Club or Birdman which are premised on topical material that was previously not employed. I must concede these points. There is still some excellent work that is produced. But as an overall tally of output, it must also be conceded that the % of material generated from the "remake" model has increased. 

Wherein, the truly new material must have decreased. 

Part of this whole problem seems to be linguistic to me. In a movie, you have person(s) x, who must go to place(s) y and perform z to have x2 happen, and so on. There are, linguistically, a certain number (though I am sure it is high) of truly interesting stories that we might consider worthy of filmographic record. Once that is reached, once enough wild and surprising stuff has happened to enough people, etc., we sort of have to start over with the whole thing. When considered in this way we can see that there are only enough variations of stories at present to sustain an industry of todays scale for about 20-30 years. 

So we might consider here a few things. 

World population in -35 years.

2015 - 35 takes us to about 1980.

4.44 Billion
Lets take a second to examine the film industry in 1980.

Best Picture - from 1979 (presented in '80)
Kramer vs Kramer - a film about some interesting new laws that were emerging at the time. 
From 1980 - Ordinary People - a film, again, about massive state apparatus now being a pivotal feature in elements that would have previously been considered personal affairs, etc.

So these movies, we can see, rely on absolutely minimal 'special effects'. They are story drived about new societal phenomena that many many people were starting to deal with (or hear about others dealing with). The full results of the massive expansion in federal agency that had exploded under the Nixon model - truly transforming the American cognitive and legal landscape for an - as yet - undetermined amount of time. 

So, legal dramas may continue to be a driver of new thought in film for some time. Also I would say new tales from new warzones (or even more recent ones that the population is generally unfamilliar with like American Sniper). Outside of this, the landscape looks bleak in the world of fiction. LOTR and GOT have provided some relief from the drought of new content through some revival of the fantasy genre, but these departures seem short lived for the viewing public. Indeed LOTR is quite an old story just being REMADE in the newest of mediums, and GOT relies on complete sensationalism as a heavy fundamental of it's TELEVISION production material. Now we even see here something new whereby the TV demands is outstripping the content creation - effectively completely sacrificing intellectual integrity strictly to produce more flash and smoke. 

no man, that's not The Rainmaker I meant at all :P

Lets take a look at the population and films of recent time; 

best picture 2013 
Argo: A film about a hostage situation in Iran, I think. I haven't watched it as I fear these sorts of movies like Hurt Locker and Argo are sort of propoganda pieces to keep people supportive of our efforts to occupy foreign nations in deserts far far away.

2014:12 Years a Slave. I did see this, I thought it was a touching and troubling portrait of an important historical era. I didn't 'enjoy' the film because it was very dark and highly sensational in nature and I felt that Brad Pitts character fell flat, but the rest of the cast, the emotional sincerity and the hard issues it attempted to tackle were all appreciated. Also - it's funny that the blackout thing is happening considering that 2 years ago the best picture was very greatly made up of a showing of a spectacular black cast who perfectly transported us through the complete atrocities of the injustices of the system of slavery in America. Also, Cuba Gooding Jr. won an Oscar once just for being a completely loveable character who perfectly portrayed his role in a transcendent way... he didn't win because he was Black and people don't always lose because of it either. (To completely digress here, I saw Straight Outta Compton and I think that it should really be at the heard of this debate as those guys produced and acted supurbly - but it WAS nominated for screenplay and the rest of it while well performed and produced is obviously not going to get much attention because they swear in it, portray the police as racist in a time of high tension already today, and all were very new to mainstream exposure of the likes of Oscar IMO. Being in that film should be a badge of honour they wear all through their careers. Also, the screenplay might win in a fair contest too, so then SOC would be an Oscarwinning film already.... but I digress)

And so we have circled back to the heart of the problem, wherein todays expression of the culture of film heavily transposes the notion that we are completely prepared to sacrifice all sense of story or helpful developments expressed through film- we will sell it out to make it flash-bang full of cash - in a heartbeat. 

CGI and absolute sensationalism rule the day today. A deep story and the dissemination of hardcore and useful information is far from the pulse that drives todays media.

However, again, this is simply a symptom of a culturally deprived society IMO. We can watch 1000 movies a month now for basically nothing. We're getting old-hat with this stuff. What will the next great endeavour of interest be once we've satisfied outselves on watching stories of others and porn. After that, what is there for these internets to do for us ? Personally I look forward to a potential future where computers connected to the interet are basically cash machines for the citizens of nations who's successful management by government will result in hearty Basic Income Guarantees for all citizens. Meaningful work and discourse amongst the general population, and a sincere effort to colonize off world - where the current and heroic tales of contemporary explorers of that day will drive a peaceful expansion of the human race deep into the stars.... then we'll have some new stories. And a new world right here to enjoy on many more levels - as our ultimately revered homeland - than we do presently. 

I really hope we all get our shit together and start talking and living with purpose. I really do. If not we'll be sitting ducks stewing in warm water for the other options that quickly approach. I still think there's time for this little blue dot to pull it's socks up. Here's to it. 

Monday, December 21, 2015

Pollution-based environmental damages vs A Carbon Tax

Is the planet getting hotter ? Is it caused by us ? Are fossil fuels to blame ? Does recycling help ?

is it just me or is it getting hotter outside in the winter ?

All of these sorts of questions are today considered part of 'environmentalism'. This movement has existed to varying degrees since, at least, the time of Thomas Jefferson in the 1700's, but examples can also be cited earlier. In the cases of the early environmentalists they were very often those who were, by-and-large, already considered to be 'natural philosophers', mathemetitians, statistitians, 'natural scientists', alchemists, managers of ports or civic works, etc. The percentage of the populations employed in these vocations was small. 

just look at all that profit on the wind !

The very great majority of people were of a more peasantly stock and so had very little such concern. Even among the aristocracy, until the renaissance, very little lay-science was made available outside personal erudition or invitational conferences. The World Expo's, begun in earnest around the 1840's, was the beginning of wider public scientific awareness. Please take a moment and reflect on that... the public has only been exposed to 'modern science' for 150 years. At the onset, virtually nothing of science was concerned with 'environmentalism' as we conceive of it today. Quite the opposite. This was the age of industrialization. The greatest mechanical advances usually had quite dire environmental consequences for the people and the planet, but the awareness of chemistry and pollution as concepts was very little possessed by the people. 

I'm pretty sure the poop in the water is making people sick.... hmmm...

We might do well again to consider that it was until even more recently that we were able to argue against science even when it came to things like cigarettes, which effectively pollute the body. There were clear, visible and scientific links between smoking and throat irritation, for example, but we see that the profit motive and the general lack of scientific awareness in the public (meaning citizens, judges, doctors even, etc.,) allowed smoking to continue under a cloak of 'is it or isn't it bad for you??' for many more years than today seems appropriate. I am not arguing against a persons right to choose to smoke, only that we cannot pretend that our lung-butter is unrelated... scientifically.

take two of these with some alcohol, call me tonight, sugar-tits !

I feel the situation with environmental awareness is somewhat similar. One of the greatest tactics of distraction I have noticed, is the usage of the terms 'global warming' and 'climate change'. Both of these are keywords - neurologically designed and deployed - to cause confusion and distraction from the cornerstone issue of POLLUTION. 

Is the planet getting warmer ? Maybe, but who cares? What does that give or take away from the already substantial arguments against the poisoning of our people and planet for financial gain of a small few ? 

Is global warming man made ? Who cares ? Maybe the planet has cool and warm periods... how are we doing on the whole "combating pollution" thing ? 

You see, by framing the discussion in terms of 'everyones fault' or 'global cycles' they seem to be laying the roadwork for a non-corporate-liable 'carbon tax' whereby you and I pay an extra environmental fee on just about everything. It seems this will take the guise of a global levy. I don't want to digress too far here, but basically they are very skillfully changing the narrative of these issues completely. Instead of working hard to enact binding pollution controls of profit-producing corporations that operate in our nations and/or around the globe; we are getting ready to make the victims pay the surcharge for pollution-based environmental damages. 

but I already paid to pay ! :<

Imagine a medieval Lord. He provides food for your family. At some point the people, in public, discover that the food provided is causing ailment. Naturally, one would hope for a free remedy as this has happened out of ones control, against ones self and family... instead the Lord continues to supply the rotten goods, but also starts charging money for a placebo-based cure for the condition they have themselves created. Additional levy may also here be made against the people to help with additional costs of removing their dead, etc, which the state must bear during this 'crisis'.

While I am sure something akin to this likely happened in history, in a democracy - even one run through representatives - the government obviously should not take this path. In a democracy, we assume, the people discover this issue and the state works to quickly find a different source of food, as well as providing cures to the population at no or minimal cost. Additionally, in a well-run democracy, the citizens might make levy on the gov't for reparations where fault may be found and recompense due.

I ask you, should we not remove the poop from out the waters ?

I apologize for the voyage to a cruder time, but it seems a most apt example here. In this democratic western world we inhabit, it seems outrageous to me that corporations and mining operations, (etc.,) all so easily evade appropriate payment for their substantial gains. These corporations have ruined significant sections of the world and have paid the very least of damages. Entire cities, peoples and ecosystems are destroyed and fines are given. Fines which are not damaging or effective deterrence for these types of offences. We know this because all the worst offenders still exist and still drive massive profits. 

At this point, we are already buying 30% of our own garbage back through recycling programs - which generally have very little environmental impact but help boost bottom-lines for corporations very significantly. We have virtually no jobs in production left because instead of investing in cleaner technologies 40 years ago, we decided to invest in the capitalists pocket-lining instead. 

or you could buy one nice glass bottle and do a little planning with your life.

Environmental hazards now abound. We are told we will have to pay much more for foods in the coming years because of environmental anomalies, which we assume are caused by POLLUTION. WE pay pay pay and the issues are no closer to being resolved, wealth inequality grows, opportunities diminish and the corporations get bigger and badder and richer every day.

Is the planet getting hotter ? Take some time today and calculate out what pollution-based environmental damages exist in your own area. Consider well that there are few jobs and well paying unions today because those jobs are all moved to areas where pollution is more easily produced and afforded by the companies that we prop up every day with our dollar-votes. If you do a proper tally you can pretty quickly see that the amount of environmental damages against you is close to the amount you owe in fines for pirating media content... 

I guess they got ya coming and going...

Friday, December 11, 2015

Pondering the kindness of Putin

I noticed in my news-feed today that 3 more astronauts have returned to Earth this morning aboard the trusty ol' Soyuz. As pleased as I am with the safe return of these heroes and the ongoing long-term radiation experiments of the NASA twins, something more pressing struck me about the missions today...

Putin says you may proceed with your genetic space experiment, comrades.

Since the end of the Space Shuttle program around 2010 (something that I, as well as many others including the venerable Dr. Armstrong, strongly opposed) The USA has been completely dependent upon their former-rival-turned-partner Russia for manned launch capability. At the time, although this measure was adopted with seeming ease, there was yet some hawkish concern about depending on another nation for anything this important. Indeed, although at the time I thought Mitt was mad, Russia has turned out to be a far greater 'threat' to America than any other single nation. This was not at all the tone of relations between the two SuperPowers when we scuttled the shuttle. The devolution of relations has been severe and steady for several years now. First over the encroachment of NATO into The Ukraine and now over the sovereignty and terrorist issues in Syria. While I have always been a little soft on the hatred of Russia and hard on the USA, I think this is fitting as all to often the victors skew the narrative against the vanquished - and also the highest of figures should be held to the highest of account. I only make this digression to help show that I am not strictly sympathetic to the Russian side of things here. I very much appreciate and admire the gift of liberty that America has given to the world; yet I remain unconvinced that it is a valuable market commodity, as such.

Trust the Russians, you say ?
Our perception of Russia is always as the aggressor, an instigator of malcontent. Has our partnership over the ISS bourne this out ? It is an interesting thing to consider. It seems almost obvious to me that if the shoe was on the other foot; if Russia had dropped it's manned launch capability in 2010, there would be no Russians presently on-board the ISS. The fact that Roscosmos has not halted the transportation of Americans (and also other EU members) to the ISS, speaks very clearly to me about who the aggressors are in our current global environ. 

Should we truly imagine that the hard-lined Putin is graciously extending these services for the betterment of mankind ? If this is the case, then he is a more compassionate and considerate leader than what has been produced by the plurality of our institutions. I believe that the war-minded Republican houses would quickly leave Russians 'pissing in the solar winds', if they had their way. Obama, wanting to give the democrats a veneer of muscle, would likewise have quickly given space co-operation the axe in my opinion. This would have made him 'look tough' on Russia while still avoiding open armed conflict. 

Such a nobel fellow :P
I do not wish herein to portray Russia as some great bastion of moral supremacy on the matter. I believe that the Russian government would, by right and inclination, also enact these prohibitions. The difference is, in my opinion, that Russians fear direct American reprisal where America would not. 

I believe that any move by Russia to now prohibit the transit of astronauts would be viewed as an act of territorial aggression against the US, vis; purposfully obstructing the USA from transit to and from it's rightful territorial assets., etc. 

Notionally, I believe this is viewed in law similarly to a naval blockade. Let us say that there was a small island within Russian coastal waters. Then, let us say that the USA has been transiting passengers to-and-from the island using a declared neutral drop-point on another small island in international waters. So the USA brings people to the international island, then they board a Russian ship for passage to the island located within Russian territory. Declining to take people to the ISS would be viewed the same as refusing to transport vital passengers to the inter-Russian island in our example. 

This is a good visual for Putin trying to stop American space access, like, imagine that's
just a stick with a light that he has there...

In the water, the USA would have the option, of course, of sending their own boat through the international sphere, into Russian waters and to the island. We might infer here that Russia would view the transit as an incursion against the territorial sovereignty of their waters - and rightly so. In space that option (send their own unit) is not presently available, and so the potential damage to the colony in space could be that much more severe. 

Several issues come to mind in both examples; first-off, how did an American settlement end-up in such an obviously Russian-controlled sphere - why assume these risks and liabilities to begin with? Likewise, why put your space-transit abilities in the hands of another -often antagonistic- nation ?Supremacy of force and a desire to disseminate it can be the only reasonable assumption. Obviously the USA would be unwise to claim a dependent island in such waters - equally unwise to put ones faith in a potential enemy for something so important as space transit. It must have been assumed, basically, at the time the shuttle program was dissolving; if Russia says they won't take our guys they better be ready to face the full force of American Fury. A proposition which Putin has obviously not been eager to fulfill. 

Distasteful and perhaps harsh, but still a nasty tinge of truth as well...

No, I do not think kindness is a main proponent of Putin's platform in general, nor related to space-faring accommodation. I am pretty-well convinced that these space-transits are occurring only thanks to a gun at the head of Russia. With all the other tensions already encircling these two giants of war - would Putin honestly even consider to spark the conflict with something as trivial as the non-space based space station transits where so little is to be gained from such termination (except ones own possible destruction) ? Is publicly making a joke of the US space program worth a million Russian lives ? I think not. What I find most troubling is that America seems too keen these days to get that gun up to as many heads as it wants, thinks or cares to. 

When a country so important that has stood for so much good in the world at times, is degraded to holding the world ransom over any issue it needs resolved ... it becomes an example of the tyranny it once struggled to shrug off. One must at times wonder how long the tree of liberty can stand without being watered. 

I honestly hope that the tensions in Crimea, the wider Ukraine, Georgia, Syria and elsewhere can be resolved without any further escalation of armed conflict. Either way, I expect the shared-space program will endure until the bitter end - being viewed as absolutely inconsequential in every regard except seat-ticket sales revenue. If Russia was to take a stand on this issue, they would be attacked almost instantly. The entire Russian problem, to me, seems to center around their taking complete advantage of every moral cavity we have recently vacated... and for so little gain to ourselves, at that. 

Those who would give up liberty for security lose both, also I just invented electricity.
How can you argue with any of that ?

Either we owe Putin our sincere thanks for sustaining the space program through this phase, or we owe the deepest of apologies for turning an organization and it's instruments of peace, into a hostage situation. Either way, I fear we are quickly losing moral high-ground in the etherial relams. As above, so below ?

So we're thinking of expanding NATO to your door, but also like, can we ask you to
keep sending our guys to space, pretty pleeeease ?? :>

Sunday, March 1, 2015

The Right Stigma

I wanted to post this before the laws change too much here. If they constitute some sort of violation in the future I do apologize, but also hope that such an event itself will help to herein justify my assumptions and peaceful protests against said mechanisms of time and "justice".

There are several issues which are happening in such fine orchestration and with such diabolical intent that one who is aware and read-enough to observe the trajectory can not help but be guffawed.


We are presently witnessing a level of hostility on the world stage not seen in about a hundred years. Perhaps it is, and has ever been, the role of the earlier-generational components of centuries that they are to be whistfully thrown upon the altar of war and death for the later blessings of peace and progress. It is striking that we have already been at war for a decade. Open, large scale war. So one could observe; the early 2000's was a component of the (American) Middle-East Wars, early 1900's: WWI and II. And 1812 was, well, the war of 1812 period. In each instance the nature and substance of 'the nation' was threatened from 'abroad' or a 'foreign interest'.

What strikes me as extraordinarily juvenile of mind about all this is that who really cares about a foreign interest? What does that even mean (besides some sort of xeno-phobic kinship violation)? For the common citizen of any such culture; fair work, fair wage, fair legal systems and enough satisfactory personal time is all that can really be desired. These can vary by geography and religious preference somewhat, but in the main; the simple desire of a peaceful home, a happy spouse and a seeming purpose are quite sufficient. Indeed the entire pretext of the struggle of man so far is a desire to work up to these achievements. The closest thing we can recall of an idealized 'golden-aged people' are the 1% of ancient greece, rome and egypt who were free to fetter their time away in debate, good company and good wine. The simple desire for freedom and peace is so palpable that it is only when such is threatened by the aggression and violence of another that any violence seems justified whatsoever.

So who are these enemies from without ? Here in the west that ticket has largely been filled by the faceless rage of islam. but what is the source of this hatred ? Is fighting fire with fire the best way to stop your kitchen from burning down ? Is it that they perhaps believe our God is evil ? That seems to be the premise that is vended. But Islam has the same God of Abraham that any Jew or Christian does. Basically all faiths recognize the prophets of each other faith... So then it is fanatics ?  So now the percentage of people who are out to get us drops dramatically and we see what many understand; Islamic adherents are no more dangerous than Christian or Jewish practitioners... yet each group also posesses fanatics. Interestingly enough the fanatics of all sides seem to be at their worst when they are all trying to tempt God to reveal his plans and helpers... but I digress.

From their side; the problem is also OUR fanatics then. Most people HERE also desire simple peace and life and liberty and to serve their community and their God, but some among us manage to wrangle millions in preference to the causes of violent overthrow, armmament, attack and prejudice. This is a strange contemplation; to us they are the enemy but to them we are.... largely for the same reasons. Bill Maher may have said it best in WHEN YOU RIDE ALONE; they hate us because we don't know why they hate us. The fact that we have continually exploited their resources and people as we do our own has never seemed to factor into the equation. Here it is "ok" (even i must concede) because it is our peopole and our laws made by our ministers, but when we foist these views on people of other regions it is a tenuous argument for our moral superiority; especially in North America where we all so stridently argued for direct self-representation due to geological, religious or other preferences we deemed fit under the laws of all people.

In the USA the constitution is a document written in the hopes of an awakening for all mankind. We often forget that the revolutionary spirit in france that produced napoleon also produced washington. It represents the first time that men not specifically born to the task held political sway... it was a noble experiment, but perhaps only possible because of several strong personalities being born into a time that was ready to support and encourage them. Maybe America was a great idea for the founders, but not so much their decendants... The civil liberties won after confrontation with a great 'foreign' power are being discarded in the face of protecting us all from another one... when considered in this light the enemy without is largely baseless and senseless... but that does not mean there are not enemies, only that they are among us.


On september 10th 2001 if you had tried to put forward an piece of nazi-fied rubbish called the PATRIOT ACT (especially considering the then-fresh revelation of a missing $3Trillion in ALREADY-EXISTING operations) you may have been impeached from office for gross incompetence and a sheer misunderstanding of what your job was. As they say, the next day everything changed.

After years of policy deepening and widening the trough of immigrants from ever newer and more exotic locations around the globe; we were told they, those people HERE were the 'foreign threat' now. While they shared our geography, they were hostile aliens. Traditions of community and kin, of being a part of the nation they are in - were all completely undone. Our own shores were not safe. A sort of soft invasion was already well underway. The only way to protect from an inborn foreign threat like this was to do away with some civil liberties. None of the ones that are essential for the avoidance of a complete police state, but just enough to establish the principals of the erosion of rights, the creation of an inter-agency force and the accumulation of more powers of foreign lands not a party to any such agreements or legal processes.

Osama bin Laden or Obama sin Laden.
The only difference is B/S

Because of all this unpleasantness, the strain of perpetual war and the tangling of the legal system in the additional task of undoing and repair itself more constantly than usual - the people lose their essentials. The right to fair wage is gone, we must make cuts to fund the war. The right to peace is gone, the gov't has flooded the streets here and abroad with potential violence and conflict through efforts that have very little benefit for the majority of citizens. It is almost like they are using us as open collateral at this point. While the role and sincere efforts of government go into producing the best standards of living for their citizens, there is another type in open operation now that works to dismantle the things people like at home to destroy other things abroad. It's a total moral outrage, but it goes on. The legal system that should provide oversight is so completely overwhelmed by these counter-productive efforts, that again; the people lose their rights to natural justice. While scores of highly paid people work themselves and others tirelessly to alter the definitions of such terms, the jobs, money and lives are all spent in such pursuits rather than the provision of good and simple living conductive to a good society. When a man is happy, at peace and in his home, the bawdyhouse owner is the one left to bemoan his fate. In my town the proprietors of good times as such are beginning to seek office. WE begin to look to them for wisdom and guidance (or tolerate them enough that they think we might) because they are without scruples in business and we need that to get anything done now.

Without opportunity, representation, fair wages and sensible rules a people are likely to become restless. IF you had revealed in July 2001 that the gov't had been waterboarding and giving tanks directly to police people would have lost it, the fact that we accept all this in law today is a great testiment to the persistence success of these people. Now that the citizens are restless they police and military are trained on THEM. If anyone had said in November 2001 that terror laws would be used against natural born citizens of the nation there would have been no support for the measures whatsoever. Everyone that warned of a slippery slope in these matters has resoundingly been proven right on all counts. While our corporate tyrant kings enjoy every pleasure, todays Nobel laureates live in chains...

WE are our own worst enemies through our simple lack of observation. People are so glued to their phones and their 'security' in the world (in all it's forms) that the actually world where people live and work and build kin and truly love one another as so cliche as to almost be as reminisced as that golden age of white marble towers and fine long-robes. At least they let us keep the wine so far.