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Lazlo's New Story

red61544

For anyone who has not yet noticed, Lazlo0 started a new story. Two chapters have been posted and each could be a story unto itself. It's rather powerful. Do yourself a favor and read it.

Replies:   docholladay  gmontgomery
docholladay

@red61544

Planned on reading it as soon as i noticed the first chapter.

Replies:   BlinkReader
BlinkReader

@docholladay

I'm already addicted to Lazlo Zalezac's stories :)

And now I'm thinking if I should start reading it now and start eating my fingernails while waiting for another chapter, or just start eating my nails now and wait till story will be finished - and then read it at once in full glory.

What would you all suggest me to choose?

Replies:   red61544
richardshagrin

I didn't care for the second chapter. One of the characters, a villainess, seemed unreal to me.

Replies:   awnlee jawking
awnlee jawking

@richardshagrin

It's a sort of parable - all the characters are one-dimensional. Although they tend to get lower scores, I prefer Lazlo's stories in which the characters are multi-dimensional eg A. King and his Queen.

AJ

Replies:   Jim S
red61544

@BlinkReader

What would you all suggest me to choose?


Who needs fingernails? Lazlo always finishes his stories so we don't have to worry about yellow lines. He also posts frequently so you don't have to reread what's come before. Enjoy it!

Replies:   Zom
Zom
Updated:

@red61544

Lazlo always finishes his stories

Not quite always.
http://storiesonline.net/s/69120/more-magic
http://storiesonline.net/s/52407/the-quatyl

Replies:   REP
Jim S
Updated:

@awnlee jawking


all the characters are one-dimensional


Not so fast here. Peter is one-dimensional? Well, at least not to me. As for the others, lets give Lazlo a little time before jumping on him. Its only chapter two, right?

Might as well kill two birds with one post. From richardshagrin:

One of the characters, a villainess, seemed unreal to me.


She is very, very believable. Given present day atmosphere on college campuses, she may be common. Thats the scary part for me.

A lot of Lazlo's stories are parables. Well, almost. This one is chillingly real so far. And, as one who has studied the Constitution thoroughly, I'm really anticipating where he will take this story.

Replies:   awnlee jawking
awnlee jawking

@Jim S

Not so fast here. Peter is one-dimensional? Well, at least not to me. As for the others, lets give Lazlo a little time before jumping on him.


The intention was not to dump on him. In a parable-like story, having exaggerated one-dimensional characters serves to amplify the point. If Peter had a selfish, evil streak it would derail the story.

AJ

REP

@Zom

I suspect you were just correcting an earlier comment.

I personally feel that not completing 2 out of 67 stories is a pretty good track record.

To put Lazlo's track record into perspective consider the track record of another well-known and respected SOL Author. The last time I checked, he had posted 56 stories and he had 39 "Incomplete and Inactive" banners; his current story count is slightly higher.

Replies:   paliden  Zom  awnlee jawking  burlarr
BlinkReader

Oh, you poor democrats (not as in some party, but as someone living in democratic society, whatever it means today)...

If in my state government write - "Sky is blue" we are all scrambling and trying to guess what lies behind these words. This is now in our genes, you may say.
Same is with literature - we are trying to find what lies behind some story.

But you - if it's not on telly (or on any other your screen) you can't even start to trying to find what lies behind the story.

That's the reason so many of you can't see the beauty in mr. Zalezac stories. You have simply lost imagination :(
Poor you.

Maybe that's also the reason your big companies are so desperate to develop all mighty AI :D

paliden

@REP

the track record of another well-known and respected SOL Author


Who is this author?

Replies:   REP
REP

@paliden


Who is this author?


My intent was to focus attention on Lazlo's good track record. Naming the author would detract from that goal, so I decided to withhold that author's name.

I also wasn't trying to dump on that author, and providing the name might result in a disagreement in the Forum for I know many posters hold him in high regard.

Zom

@REP

I suspect you were just correcting an earlier comment.

As you say. Certainly not even a soupçon of criticism.

awnlee jawking

@REP

The last time I checked, he had posted 56 stories and he had 39 "Incomplete and Inactive" banners; his current story count is slightly higher.


I've often wondered what the reaction would be to posting a significant number of experimental starters to discover which ones readers would most like to see continued. (I suspect I know of at least one author who currently does that.)

One consequence would be a large proportion of yellow stripes after the relative failures are abandoned.

Do you believe that's what the author you referred to is doing?

AJ

Replies:   jr88  REP
jr88

@awnlee jawking


Do you believe that's what the author you referred to is doing?


I doubt it. This author's 4 longest stories are all Incomplete and Inactive. I'm pretty sure there's some other reason that he didn't finish them.

REP

@awnlee jawking


Do you believe that's what the author you referred to is doing?


I have my doubts. I don't know the man, but his friends and supporters believe he did so for reasons other than what you suggested. As I said, I am not out to demean the man, so I would rather just drop this aspect of the conversation and go back to Lazlo's new story.

Replies:   StarFleet Carl
StarFleet Carl

@REP

go back to Lazlo's new story


And his latest chapter is a humdinger! I'm not sure whether to be completely enthralled with the story, or completely horrified that he's describing our society today so correctly.

Replies:   Zom  graybyrd  REP
Zom

@StarFleet Carl

completely enthralled with the story, or completely horrified that he's describing our society today so correctly.

I vote for completely enthralled that he's describing our society today so correctly.

Replies:   Crumbly Writer
graybyrd

@StarFleet Carl

or completely horrified that he's describing our society today so correctly.


Lazlo wrote: "It is going to take a great deal of care to maneuver the country through the upcoming years. One slip, one mistake, and it will turn into a third-world country."

Sorry to report, but it already is a third-world country. We're terrified to admit it. We're trillions of dollars behind in infrastructure maintenance that can only be financed by privatization and toll booths; and we have given the police legally-blessed property seizure laws with no recourse allowed the victim.

Shall we continue with more examples? That said, Lazlo is an optimist.

Replies:   sejintenej  Not_a_ID
REP

@StarFleet Carl

he's describing our society today so correctly.


He seems to have a habit of doing that. I noticed that trait of his in Service Society.

Replies:   Jim S
Jim S

@REP

He seems to have a habit of doing that. I noticed that trait of his in Service Society.


He can also do it allegorically, e.g. Jade Force of Misera.

sejintenej

@graybyrd

Lazlo wrote: "It is going to take a great deal of care to maneuver the country through the upcoming years. One slip, one mistake, and it will turn into a third-world country."

How true.
Argentina used to have the 9th top economy in the world but look at it now!
Nigeria used to be the breadbasket of Africa, able to feed its population AND export foodstuffs. Now it cannot feed itself despite the Emir of Sokoto supplying it with a corps of highly educated and able people.

It all comes down to the top people in power. Look at Japan (and especially the agreement between the Shoji Kaishas made before the surrender which created a structure even McArthur failed to control), India, China ...
My own country and Brexit - we could be a superpower again but with the government we have .... let us see

Replies:   awnlee jawking
awnlee jawking

@sejintenej

we could be a superpower again


I voted for Brexit in the expectation that we wouldn't. We're a small country heavily in debt - the world doesn't need us aspiring to be world police, America-lite.

AJ

LonelyDad

@awnlee jawking

I voted for Brexit in the expectation that we wouldn't. We're a small country heavily in debt - the world doesn't need us aspiring to be world police, America-lite.

There are other ways to be a superpower than to be the world's policeman. Hopefully, America will also realize that, and work towards other ways to interact with the rest of the world. Although, if the rest of the world is unable to curb the current fundamentalist terrorism (notice I did NOT specify a religion - fundamentalists and their mindset can be found in almost any religion) I can easily see 'Hunter' coming true, with a good possibility of things not turning out as well as they did in that story.

Replies:   Wheezer
Wheezer

@LonelyDad

Although, if the rest of the world is unable to curb the current fundamentalist terrorism (notice I did NOT specify a religion - fundamentalists and their mindset can be found in almost any religion)

The ignorant rednecks in Alabama just okayed Churches to have their own private police forces! American Christian Taliban, anyone?

Dominions Son

@Wheezer

The ignorant rednecks in Alabama just okayed Churches to have their own private police forces! American Christian Taliban, anyone?


Not quite.

1. It is only authorizing one specific mega church with several large campuses to run it's own police force, it is not authorizing church run police forces for churches in general.

2. The bill to authorize this has only passed in one half of the state's bicameral legislature. While it is expected to clear the other half with little problem, that hasn't happened yet.

http://www.thedailybeast.com/articles/2017/04/13/in-alabama-shocker-a-church-is-getting-its-own-police-force.html

sejintenej

@Wheezer

The ignorant rednecks in Alabama just okayed Churches to have their own private police forces! American Christian Taliban, anyone?

On 22nd December 1216 The then Pope approved the request of Dominic de Guzman to found a new order of monks at Prouile, even now a tiny village out in the French boondocks. (They do make remarkably good wine) The Dominican Friars had the job of seeking out the local Christian sect which did not acknowledge the Pope's supremacy. The Order was remarkably effective at seeking out and burning Cathars, so effective that the function has become even now an integral part of the Catholic Church - the last pope headed up that "department" which had earlier become the Spanish Inquisition and is responsible for discipline.

From tiny groups terror can spread across a continent.

StarFleet Carl

@Wheezer

So a church with multiple campuses can't have it's own security force, while it's acceptable for Oral Roberts University to do so?

Seriously, that's basically what they're doing - wanting to increase the authority of their private security forces to LEO status. And it's not like they're the first church to do so, there is a legal precedent already.

Keep in mind that having LEO authority would be only on their own property, just as a college campus police officer only has authority on his campus.

Oh, and it was actually passed LAST year, the governor just didn't sign it then. Nothing like a timely response - and this is just that. And the Daily Beast Article is nothing like fair and unbiased reporting, either. Good grief, could it be a more biased and hateful article?

Replies:   Wheezer  Crumbly Writer
Wheezer
Updated:

@StarFleet Carl


So a church with multiple campuses can't have it's own security force, while it's acceptable for Oral Roberts University to do so?


Where do you get the idea that I think Oral Fucking Roberts University deserves it's own police force?

I seriously doubt the Daily Beast is any more biased & hateful than Fox News.

Dominions Son

@Wheezer

Where do you get the idea that I think Oral Fucking Roberts University deserves it's own police force?


Pretty much every university in the US, public or private, has it's own police force. I have no idea why. Quite frankly, none of them, even the public universities should have their own police force.

Replies:   Wheezer
richardshagrin

@Wheezer

Oral Fucking Roberts University

If it is Oral, is it Fucking?

Replies:   Dominions Son  Wheezer
Dominions Son
Updated:

@richardshagrin


If it is Oral, is it Fucking?


Who the fuck are you, Bill Clinton?

ETA: P.S. Ever hear of face fucking?

Replies:   Grant
Grant

@Dominions Son

If it is Oral, is it Fucking?


ETA: P.S. Ever hear of face fucking?

Oral is using the mouth on the main sexual organs (male or female).
Face fucking is (generally) the male using the mouth for sexual release.

Wheezer

@Dominions Son

Pretty much every university in the US, public or private, has it's own police force. I have no idea why. Quite frankly, none of them, even the public universities should have their own police force.

Campus cops are far from being real police officers - more along the lines of Mall Cops.

Replies:   Dominions Son
Wheezer

@richardshagrin

If it is Oral, is it Fucking?

Read it in the spirit of Jesus Fucking Christ, or Richard Fucking Shagrin...

Replies:   Crumbly Writer
StarFleet Carl

@Wheezer

Where do you get the idea that I think Oral Fucking Roberts University deserves it's own police force?


Because nearly every college campus in this country has it's own police force - including the religious ones. Where the officers have arresting authority, same as a regular LEO. In other words, there's already a precedent set, regardless of what you think.

Replies:   Wheezer
Wheezer

@StarFleet Carl

Because nearly every college campus in this country has it's own police force - including the religious ones. Where the officers have arresting authority, same as a regular LEO. In other words, there's already a precedent set, regardless of what you think.


A college campus is not a church, not even so-called "Christian" colleges. I think it sets a bad precedent to expand this to churches (even one) - regardless of what you think.

Ernest Bywater
Updated:

@Wheezer


The ignorant rednecks in Alabama just okayed Churches to have their own private police forces! American Christian Taliban, anyone?


Did you look at the bill itself? Here it is, and think on what it says:

http://alisondb.legislature.state.al.us/alison/searchableinstruments/2017RS/bills/SB193.htm

To authorize Briarwood Presbyterian Church, organized as a nonprofit church under Alabama's nonprofit corporation law, to employ police officers under certain conditions.

BE IT ENACTED BY THE LEGISLATURE OF ALABAMA:

Section 1. (a) The Board of Trustees of Briarwood Presbyterian Church, organized as a nonprofit church under Alabama's nonprofit corporation law, may appoint and employ one or more persons to act as police officers to protect the safety and integrity of the church and its ministries. Persons employed as police officers pursuant to this section shall be charged with all of the duties and invested with all of the powers of law enforcement officers in this state.

(b) Every police officer appointed and employed pursuant to this section shall be certified by the Alabama Peace Officers Standards and Training Commission and shall meet all of its requirements, including continuing education.

(c) The authority of any police officer appointed and employed pursuant to this section shall be restricted to the campuses and properties of Briarwood Presbyterian Church.

Section 2. This act shall become effective immediately following its passage and approval by the Governor, or its otherwise becoming law.


Here's an article about the church:

https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Briarwood_Presbyterian_Church

Summary:

The police appointed are restricted to the church property, they have to be fully certified peace officers as per the state laws and training, and must keep up with their LEO training - a cost of many thousands of dollars. I don't see them having too many of their own cops.

The only reason I can for them wanting this is the laws that have been passed about not allowing anyone except law enforcement officers go armed on the grounds of any educational facility and they have an educational facility as part of their grounds. So they can't hire armed guards or go armed on their own grounds unless they're approved cops.

edit to add: I wouldn't be surprised if the only cops they hire are their own members who are already members of other law enforcement organisations and they hire them as part-time cops for them.

Replies:   Wheezer
Dominions Son

@Wheezer

Campus cops are far from being real police officers - more along the lines of Mall Cops.


So called mall cops are just armed security guards. The have no power to arrest.

University police are recognized law enforcement with all the same authority as any municipal police force.

Replies:   REP  REP
Crumbly Writer

@Zom

I vote for completely enthralled that he's describing our society today so correctly.

Hopefully, in the end he'll eventually paint a rosier reality than that we have now!

REP

@Dominions Son

So called mall cops are just armed security guards. The have no power to arrest.


Other than the right to make a Citizen's Arrest.

They need to be very careful if they go that route for they typically detain the person they arrest. If the arrest is found to be unlawful, the person who was detained has the right to file criminal charges for "Forcible Detainment".

Crumbly Writer

@awnlee jawking

I voted for Brexit in the expectation that we wouldn't. We're a small country heavily in debt - the world doesn't need us aspiring to be world police, America-lite.

And we're a massive country heavily in dept and out of ideas—the world doesn't need us aspiring to be the world police—America-the-heavy! :(

Crumbly Writer

@StarFleet Carl

Keep in mind that having LEO authority would be only on their own property, just as a college campus police officer only has authority on his campus.

Not only that, but 'private security' forces on campuses generally don't have the authority to make arrests or shoot people—so there are innate limitations on their ability to cower and intimidate others.

Crumbly Writer

@Wheezer

Read it in the spirit of Jesus Fucking Christ, or Richard Fucking Shagrin...

That's the reason for the Holy Trinity: so Jesus can fuck Christ (the Holy Spirit), while God watches, masturbating over their antics.

Let the outrage commence! 'D

P.S. Seriously, I'm teasing. Everyone knows God would smite anyone enjoying sex for its own sake, as well as condemning homosexual couplings!

REP

@Dominions Son

University police are recognized law enforcement with all the same authority as any municipal police force.


I agree with you that they are recognized as law enforcement officers. The problems that I have with Universities/Colleges being involved in the legal process are:

1. Many of the campus police have little to no legal training in how to enforce the law, to include how to investigate allegations of wrong doing.

2. The institution is granted the right to investigate and rule on legal issues, such as theft, assault, and rape, that should be investigated by the police and heard in a court of law, not by the Campus Police, a Student Council, and/or an academic official. When an allegation of something like rape is substantiated, the institution does not have the right to imprison the offender, so the offender is at most thrown out of the institution and typically receives nothing more that a warning (i.e., Now Junior, you know that type of behavior is wrong, so stop it or else I will have to spank you.)

Finbar_Saunders

Talking about Lazlo's new story, I really appreciate how the timbre of the dialogue has changed. It is much more realistic, less self-conscious.

Dominions Son

@REP

The problems that I have with Universities/Colleges being involved in the legal process are:


I actually agree with you on university police being problematic. However, your two points are incorrect.

1. They are required to have exactly the same training as state law requires for municipal police

2. You are wrong. They are not ruling on legal issues. Actual criminal prosecution has to go through the local DA's office. However, Universities are allowed to enforce internal disciplinary measures on students within certain limits. Such proceedings can be in addition to rather than a replacement for criminal proceedings in a court of law.

Replies:   REP
Wheezer

@Ernest Bywater

Did you look at the bill itself? Here it is, and think on what it says:


My issue is not with what it allows church police to do, but that it allows them at all. Police are an arm of the government, whether federal, state or local. I am a very firm believer in keeping the duties and powers of Church & Government separate.

Replies:   Ernest Bywater
Ernest Bywater

@Wheezer

My issue is not with what it allows church police to do, but that it allows them at all. Police are an arm of the government, whether federal, state or local. I am a very firm believer in keeping the duties and powers of Church & Government separate.


In principle, I agree with you, but when you have the federal government saying "You can't protect your private property because we're making this bullshit law about what you can and can't have on the grounds of, or associated with, any educational facility." You then have to provide the property owner with some way to protect their property that's within the limits of the federal laws.

In some states kids have died because the federal bullshit laws about Zero Tolerance of drugs and sharp objects prohibit any of them being on school grounds. Thus the kids weren't allowed to carry EPI Pens on them in case they had an attack, and by the time someone found the approved nurse, got the pen from the locked cabinet, and got to the kid, they were already dead.

The same federal laws now have a zero tolerance for weapons on the grounds of educational facilities unless they're in the hands of approved law enforcement people. Thus, the only way a church owned property with an educational facility on it can have armed guards is to have them as authorised police. Or they go unprotected and allow anyone to attack and damage the property, or kill the students.

The federal government has stuck there nose into private property, so the church has no choice but to return the favour at the state level.

Ernest Bywater

@REP

Many of the campus police have little to no legal training in how to enforce the law, to include how to investigate allegations of wrong doing.


From my past research I understand there are two levels of campus police in the USA.

1. Police who are fully trained Law Enforcement Officers with the same powers and authorities as the local cops.

2. Campus police auxiliaries who are little more than regular security staff, most of them don't have the power to carry arms, and few have the arrest powers, although they can detain people on campus property until they are arrested by a proper authority.

Which applies to what campus will depend on the authority issued to them under the relevant state or federal charter to establish the college and to enforce laws within its grounds.

REP
Updated:

@Dominions Son


They are required to have exactly the same training as state law requires for municipal police


You are mistaken DS:

1. The following link addresses campus police in multiple countries.

https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Campus_police#United_States

The second paragraph for the United States addresses campus police that are not police departments:

If it is not an actual police department, officers cannot perform the same functions as sworn police officers such as arrest perpetrators or issue citations. Some college security departments have the equivalent of armed security officers that are legally allowed to carry a firearm under that state's individual licensing requirements. ... Non-police officer certifications do not give them the right to perform police-specific duties, but ...


You are wrong. They are not ruling on legal issues. Actual criminal prosecution has to go through the local DA's office.


2. If you will recall, there have been a number of cases of female students reporting instances of being raped on campus. A number of these cases were resolved by Student Courts or Hearings at the University/College. One of the more publicized case is described in the following link:

http://www.huffingtonpost.com/2014/09/03/emma-sulkowicz-mattress-rape-columbia-university_n_5755612.html

Dominions Son

@REP

If you will recall, there have been a number of cases of female students reporting instances of being raped on campus. A number of these cases were resolved by Student Courts or Hearings at the University/College. One of the more publicized case is described in the following link:


Yes, and those matters are being handled as campus academic discipline, not as a criminal prosecution. The worst they can do is expel the offender.

Replies:   Crumbly Writer  REP
Dominions Son

@REP

The following link addresses campus police in multiple countries.


The quoted paragraph on the US is either out of date or just plain wrong.

https://uwpd.wisc.edu/careers/work-at-uwpd/

The UW-Madison Police Department provides complete law enforcement services to the campus community — using state-of-the-art, innovative, and community-oriented policing techniques. We are truly a "city within a city" — and we strive to hire the best and most qualified individuals to serve and protect our community.

All of our police officers are deputized by the Dane County Sheriff's Office and are authorized to enforce all State of Wisconsin laws and Rules of the Board of Regents.

Replies:   REP
Crumbly Writer

@Dominions Son

Yes, and those matters are being handled as campus academic discipline, not as a criminal prosecution. The worst they can do is expel the offender.

The controversy in each of those cases was that the campus security forces (with the support of the campus administration) refused to alert the police, even when requested to by the victim. In fact, they'd often hold the victims in seclusion until such time as the viability of DNA samples were no longer viable (not quite sure how that works). Then, when the women would go to the police themselves, the school would expel the women, ending their college careers without refunding any of their accumulated debts.

Somehow, with the churches' (virtually every branch) histories of abuse, I wouldn't trust them with a meter-maid ticket book!

Replies:   Dominions Son
Dominions Son

@REP

One more, this one a private university (Harvard)

HUPD officers are sworn special State Police officers with deputy sheriff powers. Those powers give them the authority to respond to any crime on campus and any "breach of the peace" on city streets in Cambridge, Somerville, and Boston.


http://www.hupd.harvard.edu/about

REP

@Dominions Son

Yes, and those matters are being handled as campus academic discipline, not as a criminal prosecution.


And that is exactly my original objection - a student files a charge of rape with the Campus Police against another student. Then the University/College fails to handle the charges as a crime. Instead they investigate and address the charges using academic discipline instead of turning it over to the judicial system.

Replies:   Dominions Son
Dominions Son

@Crumbly Writer

The controversy in each of those cases was that the campus security forces (with the support of the campus administration) refused to alert the police, even when requested to by the victim.


There are equally cases from public universities where the victim refuses to go to the regular police and the campus authorities railroad the male perpetrator, expelling him on the basis of evidence that wouldn't hold up in a real court.

There was even a recent case where an affair between a male student and a female physical therapist employed by the university was reported by a coworker of the therapist and the university expelled the male student for sexual misconduct (rape) despite the alleged victim insisting that the affair was fully consensual.

Replies:   Crumbly Writer
REP

@Dominions Son

The quoted paragraph on the US is either out of date or just plain wrong.


No, the link I provided is current and correct. What you overlooked is the UW-Madison Campus Police is a Police Department, which is addressed by the first paragraph of my link.

Replies:   Dominions Son
Dominions Son

@REP

I agree, that is a problem. However, describing it as the school making legal rulings is just wrong.

Dominions Son

@REP

No, the link I provided is current and correct. What you overlooked is the UW-Madison Campus Police is a Police Department, which is addressed by the first paragraph of my link.


And you are overlooking the fact that these days every university has a full on police department, not just armed security.

Replies:   REP
Crumbly Writer

@Dominions Son

There are equally cases from public universities where the victim refuses to go to the regular police and the campus authorities railroad the male perpetrator, expelling him on the basis of evidence that wouldn't hold up in a real court.

There was even a recent case where an affair between a male student and a female physical therapist employed by the university was reported by a coworker of the therapist and the university expelled the male student for sexual misconduct (rape) despite the alleged victim insisting that the affair was fully consensual.

Sorry, but those are all examples of why it's a bad idea to confuse and conflate university/police and religious authorities into unrelated spheres. Each has it's own pitfalls, but at least the courts have some degree of accountability (though it can take anywhere from three to eight years before it's resolved). :(

Even the Pope doesn't take that long to make a decision.

Replies:   Dominions Son
Dominions Son

@Crumbly Writer

Sorry, but those are all examples of why it's a bad idea to confuse and conflate university/police and religious authorities into unrelated spheres.


You are confused if you think I disagree with you on that point. I have explicitly stated several times on this thread that I don't think even public universities should be allowed to have their own police departments.

REP

@Dominions Son

not just armed security.


The article did not say armed security.

It said the Campus Police on some University/College campuses are Police Departments, while some campuses did not have Police Departments as their Campus Police. For those University/College campuses that did not have Police Departments as their Campus Police, the Campus Police were the equivalent of Security Guards. It also added that some of these Security Guards were authorized to carry weapons and that provided armed security.

Replies:   Dominions Son
Dominions Son

@REP

For those University/College campuses that did not have Police Departments


I'm not aware of a single university in the US that doesn't have a full police department. They only way I can see that being remotely true is if they are including community/technical colleges and small four year colleges not accredited as universities.

Replies:   REP
REP

@Dominions Son

I'm not aware of a single university in the US that doesn't have a full police department.


My posts have been addressing both universities and colleges, and I did not limit those to size or accreditation as a university.

There are universities and colleges in the United States that do not have full police departments. I took a few college classes at one of those colleges and its Campus Police department may have had a few police officers, but not all of the departments personnel were accredited police officers. The personnel included students enrolled in programs that would lead to their becoming police officers and they had no special training - my brother was one of those Campus Police officers.

LonelyDad

I know of at least one university campus with around 1500 students that has NO security personnel except for a night watchman whose major duties are checking for locked doors and the proper functioning of heating/cooling systems in each building. It is located in a small city in eastern Nebraska that is predominately a farming community with some light industry.

And before anyone gets in a snit about the small size, it is one of almost a dozen campuses spread across the US that are all part of the same university.

JohnPalko

@REP

Yeah, about that... Turns out it was most likely a fradulent accusation. That is also well publicised, but tends to be ignored since "Mattress Girl" continued to carry around her matress as a performance "art project" to "raise awareness". BTW it was actually reported to the police, they refused to prosecute citing a lack of reasonable suspicion.

http://reason.com/blog/2015/04/24/student-accused-of-rape-by-mattress-girl

Replies:   REP
REP

@JohnPalko

You may be right about it being a false accusation. What I learned is that Emma Sulkowicz and Paul Nungesser were involved in consensual sexual activities. Paul claims everything was consensual. Emma claims it started out as a consensual encounter and she said no to certain sexual acts. He persisted and used force to engage in anal intercourse with her.

That is a he said - she said situation. However, in the following weeks, 3 female students said they had similar experiences with Paul. They failed to speak up for fear that they would be treated the way Emma was treated by the University staff.

My point in bring that up had nothing to do with who was correct about Paul's actions. The point I had been making in past posts was a University's administration/facility is not the proper group to decide if a crime has been committed and they are not the proper group to determine the punishment to be imposed on a criminal.

The incident took place in the dormitory of the University of Columbia's New York campus. Emma filed a complaint about Paul's actions with the University's Public Safety Department, which complied with the University's policy for reporting criminal actions. Apparently, their Public Safety Department is not a Police Department as earlier discussed between DS and me. If you check, your will find that UOC has such a Police Department at its South Carolina campus, but the incident took place on its New York campus. The real issue is not about the qualifications of their Campus Police Department, it is about University staff acting as the Prosecutor, jury, and Judge in a criminal matter.

Rape is a criminal act. As such, Emma's complaint should have been turned over to the New York Police Department for investigation and the District Attorney's Office for processing. Instead the University's Administration conducted an investigation and hearing to determine if a crime had been committed. The Administration decided that Emma did not have sufficient proof of Paul having committed a sexual assault against her.

That hearing took place in 2012. The police report was filed in 2014. When the police looked into the matter, they found that the University had documented the events inappropriately and that made it difficult, if not impossible, to file charges against Paul. Since the matter was not looked at by the proper authorities at the time of the incident, there is no way to determine what the outcome might have been if it had been heard in a court of law.

Replies:   John Demille
John Demille

@REP

Emma claims it started out as a consensual encounter and she said no to certain sexual acts. He persisted and used force to engage in anal intercourse with her.


Yeah, it's a fake thing.

Emma Sulkowicz reported Paul Nungesser to the campus admin roughly eight months after the alleged rape. Between the sexual encounter (august 2012) and the report (april 2013) she was trying to get him to commit to her and sent him messages expressing her love and suggesting further sexual activities, and when he rebuffed her, she struck with the accusation. The police refused to press charges because they were sane and not bound by the 'Dear Colleague' letter to believe the survivor and force the accused to prove his innocence.

Woman scorned that's all.

Replies:   REP
REP

@John Demille

And where did you get that information?

Replies:   Dominions Son  JohnPalko
Dominions Son

@REP

And where did you get that information?


It's been fairly widely reported in coverage of Paul Messenger's lawsuit against the university.

Replies:   REP
JohnPalko

@REP

There's a series of emails and texts (from both before and after the alleged incident) where she reveals a desire for a continuing relationship with the accused. Why would she desire further romantic contact with someone who violently raped her? There is exen a text where she is the one who suggests having anal sex.

No one but the two of them can know what actually happened that night, but until suddenly filing charges there is no indication that she held any animus against him. It's why he was cleared by the campus sexual asault ajudication process and the police found no resonable suspicion to pursue charges.

The accusation sounds awfully like something that is the the result of some "consciousness raising" in a feminist studies course, a supposition supported by her using the mattress carrying project as her senior thesis.

There are several links in the article I provided including one to the full text of the lawsuit.

Pick better sources. Rolling Stone has an abysmal record on reporting. Their sensational report of the alleged Duke LaCrosse gang rape turns out to be wholy inacurate as well. Huffington Post does almost no primary research or investigative reporting, their posters simply recycle content gleaned from online, the more sensational the better, for the clicks. They are todays version of yellow journalism.

Replies:   REP
REP

@Dominions Son

widely reported


I've read a few of those articles and never saw it there. I am not have read the same articles.

REP

@JohnPalko

There's a series of emails and texts


As I said to DS, I haven't seen the articles. What I have seen are articles by Huffington Post, the New York Times, and several other prominent newspapers. None on them mentioned what you are saying and they all contained similar accounts.

You gave me a link to a BLOG, not a news source. No where in that blog does it say what you are saying. What it does say is the writer's OPINION of what the news articles said.

As to the link to the Court filing, you need to learn how to understand what you read. You failed to note that everything stated about Emma was under the heading: FACTUAL ALLEGATIONS COMMON TO ALL CAUSES OF ACTION. What those Factual ALLEGATIONS consist of is Paul's side of the story with no facts to substantiate his ALLEGATIONS.

If I want facts, I will accept what I get from the Huffington Post, before I will accept the opinion of a blogger I don't know.

My question still stands: Where did you get your information. Give me a link to a reliable news source.

Replies:   John Demille  JohnPalko
John Demille

@REP

If I want facts, I will accept what I get from the Huffington Post, before I will accept the opinion of a blogger I don't know.


You just lost any and all credibility with that statement.

The Huffington Post is a feminist/SJW stronghold, their coverage of anything related to women, rape, universities, equality, wage gap etc... (AKA SJW subjects) is extremely biased and should never be taken seriously; EVER.

JohnPalko

@REP

???? Check your assumptions. I provided a link to a blog of an associate editor at Reason Magazine, one that provides a precis of the "Mattress Girl" case. Links to further information are provided in that blog. Essentially the same information in that post has been published several times in the magazine, but to access those past articles you have to be a suscriber. Unlike most "news sources" these days, Reason Magazine is an actual publication, a monthly periodical, which has reporters and contributors that research news and prepare reviews and opinion peices, which they then publish, on paper, in a respected monthly magazine (this used to be called journalism, you probably aren't familiar with it). All this care is necessary, you see, since they are subject to libel laws. As a traditional publication they have fact checkers and editorial staff.

Replies:   REP
REP
Updated:

@JohnPalko


???? Check your assumptions


My Assumptions are based on the article starting out with the headliner HIT & RUN Blog.

So, this BLOGGER works for Reason Magazine, which does make him a Staff member. But the article he wrote was Still a combination of Fact and his Opinions of the Facts. The fact that this Monthly Periodical publishes Opinion Pieces as if they are News makes me doubt their credibility as a trustworthy News Source. Furthermore, there was nothing in that article that supported YOUR post's comments.

Regardless of the Huntington Post's reputation, I would believe their stories before I would accept the unsupported Personal Opinions of a Blogger.

Edited to delete the last sentence. Sorry, JohnPalko. I confused your comments with those made to me by John Demille.

JohnPalko

Hmmm... from several of your comments it's obvious that's about as far as you read. I guess we'll just chalk this discussion up to another case of a committed idealogue with a severe case of TL;DR.

Replies:   REP
StarFleet Carl

Well, if we can head back to the actual topic of this thread, which is the latest Lazlo story ... he does an excellent job of describing a Texas (or Oklahoma, for that matter) hailstorm. But with the clarification that unless that was a fully leafed out tree, his car is GOING to have some natural aerodynamics added to it. Especially when he's talking about the golf ball (okay, he said egg) sized hail in the story. The stones will hit the ground and bounce back up, if nothing else, causing damage to doors and fenders.

I may be speaking from way too damn much experience with hail of that size, or even larger. You've never had such fun as watching an entire lot full of new cars get totaled because the hail actually punched THROUGH the steel of the car.

And yeah, you get the feeling that the family didn't know what the MC REALLY did, especially with the latest guests?

REP

@JohnPalko

Hmmm... from several of your comments it's obvious that's about as far as you read.


It sounds as if this post is your response to my prior post. FYI, I read the entire article. That is why I know the article did not include your comments.

You were so positive about Reason I felt I should at least evaluate it. Therefore, I went to the Reason Magazine website. I scrolled down their list of 22 Top Stories. 18 of the Top Stories were Blog posts. The remaining 4 stories were Opinion Articles. By Opinion Articles I mean the Author included personal opinions and comments about the topic they were reporting on. The following 2 quotes were taken from 2 of the 4 Opinion Articles:

"I'm thrilled this important legislation has struck a chord and is spreading. Three key reasons I believe food-freedom legislation continues to spread are ..."


"At the time, I thought the main reason was probably that Walter Cronkite, the narrator, had become famous as a combat correspondent. That may have had something to do with it, but with the passage of years and a widened perspective, I've come to suspect that the real reason is that war—preparing for it, fighting it, recovering from it, and arguing about what it meant—was the century's principal activity..."


You may consider Reason Magazine to be a valid source for News, but I don't.

Replies:   John Demille
John Demille
Updated:

@REP


You may consider Reason Magazine to be a valid source for News, but I don't.


Be mindful of confirmation bias. Most humans don't know that they're falling for it.

You considered the HuffPost a source of facts. Can you trust a site that publishes an article titled "Could it be time to deny white men the franchise?" The article was removed three days later after the backlash. It was about stripping all white men of any political say and any possessions and redistributing them among the non-whites.

But, I try to engage my brain most of the time. I'm a libertarian and the Huffington Post is extreme left and extremely feminist, so when I read their articles I try my best to have an open mind and try to confirm the facts from multiple sources.

It's easy to like and trust a news source that leans in the same political direction as yourself.

Replies:   sejintenej  REP  REP
sejintenej
Updated:

@John Demille


It's easy to like and trust a news source that leans in the same political direction as yourself


Exactly! Think about the elections in various countries - newspapers direct the thoughts of their readers and effectively make them vote one way or another.

Isn't that partially behind Lazlo's new story?

The first day of the pre-voting for Brexit we had some politician on the radio telling us **** [an absolute load of lies; because of my background I had counter facts for everything he said, but then, of course, he was/is a politician a la "a blowjob isn't sex" brigade] AFAIR if we left then we would get all the benefits without having to pay billions to Brussels.
Of course some poor blighters would believe him.

REP
Updated:

@John Demille


I try my best to have an open mind and try to confirm the facts from multiple sources.


So do I. I don't have a favorite media source for I believe they are all biased.

I read articles about Mattress Girl published by three sources, which all said about the same thing. I posted the Huffington Post link because it was the last source I checked, not because it is my go-to source of news or because I had an affinity to what it publishes.

JohnPalko's comments regarding the validity of Reason Magazine indicate that he trusts that media source to provide him with unbiased facts. I don't consider Blog Articles to be unbiased. The magazine is a joke and if you doubt it, check out Todd Krainin's "How Payday Lenders and Check Cashers Help the Poor". The only fact in his article is that he interviewed the author who wrote a book on the subject. Absolutely no information about the book's content or what was said during the interview. I don't consider that to be journalism. I also don't agree with media sources that "get it wrong in print". I suspect that at one time or another all media sources "got it wrong". All I want out of them is a reasonable attempt at fact checking. Getting the story out first is a bad thing when the facts are wrong.

edited to add overlooked comment.

saquestor

Biased "news"? Who'd a thunk it?

One web site I use to evaluate whether the news source merits consideration is https://mediabiasfactcheck.com

You'll note that there are very few 'unbiased' sources listed, but what ever your preference, you'll likely find it listed.

REP
Updated:

@John Demille


‎4‎/‎15‎/‎2017‎ ‎9‎:‎58‎:‎46‎


There is one additional aspect to this conversation.

As I indicated in my ‎4‎/‎15‎/‎2017‎ ‎9‎:‎58‎:‎46‎ AM post, I posted the link for it was a well-known case in which the University of Columbia, instead of a court of law, held a hearing to determine if Emma's allegations were true or false (i.e., if a crime had been committed).

I could have cared less about who was being truthful, although the only supporting evidence that I am aware of regarding the allegations was the women coming forward claiming, with no proof, that Paul had treated them in the same way.

However, since that post, you and JohnPalko have ignored the fact that I don't care whose allegations are correct. The two of you continue to make an issue of my referencing the Huffington Post article and the accuracy of its content regarding Emma's and Paul's mutual allegations against each other. I could have referenced any of several media sources that addressed my issue of the University Administration conducting a hearing to determine if a crime had been committed.

LonelyDad

@REP

I agree with you. IF this thread doesn't get back on track I'm going to stop reading it. If that happens enough times I'll stop reading the forum all together. I know I'm not anyone special around here, just a reader and sometimes proofreader, but I am sure there are others who feel the same as I, and I would hate to see that happen after our host went to all the trouble to set up these forums for us. Hopefully he is not considering that a mistake about now.

Replies:   Dominions Son
Dominions Son

@LonelyDad

If that happens enough times I'll stop reading the forum all together.


It's impossible to keep any discussion on the internet on topic without heavy handed moderation. I rather doubt that our host has the time for that.

Hopefully he is not considering that a mistake about now.


I rather doubt he is. It's still a large improvement over the old forum.

John Demille

@REP

I could have referenced any of several media sources that addressed my issue of the University Administration conducting a hearing to determine if a crime had been committed.


The university probably had no choice. The 2011 'Dear Colleague' letter from the department of eduction puts the onus on the educational institutions to investigate and adjudicate complaints of sexual assault using the 'preponderance of evidence' standard or face losing their federal funding.

Your issue should be with the department of eduction and it's overreaching interpretation of Title IX in the Dear Colleague letter.

Replies:   REP
Dominions Son

@REP

University Administration conducting a hearing to determine if a crime had been committed.


That's not what they were doing. They conducted a hearing to see if sexual misconduct occurred in violation of their student code of conduct and Title IX.

Now a genuine crime of rape would also qualify on both of those points, but so could conduct that would not be criminal.

Replies:   REP
REP

@John Demille

Your issue should be with the department of eduction


I agree the issue of the University addressing criminal charges should be taken up with the Department of Education, if you are looking to change that policy.

My issue was I said to DS that the University was investigating and acting as a Court of Law when a student reported of a crime to the Campus Police and he said they weren't.

Replies:   Dominions Son
Dominions Son

@REP

My issue was I said to DS that the University was investigating and acting as a Court of Law when a student reported of a crime to the Campus Police and he said they weren't.


Except in the case of mattress girl it wasn't reported to the Campus Police. She didn't report it at all until a year after the incident is supposed to have happened and even then she reported it to the University's Title IX office, not the campus police.

Replies:   REP
REP

@Dominions Son

They conducted a hearing to see if sexual misconduct occurred in violation of their student code of conduct and Title IX.


I'll begin with Title IX. As indicated by the following link to the text of Title IX, the Department of Education tasked educational institutions with the obligation to investigate and determine if an act of sexual discrimination occurred within the educational institution. Nowhere in Title IX did the Department of Education task the educational institutions with investigating and conducting hearings regarding a compliant of one student being raped by a second student.

https://www.dol.gov/oasam/regs/statutes/titleix.htm

The University policy at the Columbia's New York campus indicates that students can report crimes committed on University property to the campus's Public Safety Department. Emma Sulkowicz filed a report with the Public Safety Department stating that she had been raped in her dorm room by Paul Nungesser.

The campus's Public Safety Department is not a Police Force. Legally, an organization like the Public Safety Department is obligated to report the knowledge of or suspicion of the commission of a crime to the proper authorities, which were the New York Police Department and District Attorney's Office. In complying with this obligation, the Public Safety Department should have forwarded Emma's report of being raped to the New York Police Department, but they failed to do so. What happened was the report was turned over to the University's Administration for processing. The Administration conducted a hearing to determine if the reported crime of rape constituted sexual harassment on campus (i.e., a violation of their Student Code of Conduct).

To summarize my initial point: Educational Institutions have a legal obligation to report crimes to the appropriate authorities. This case is an instance of a University directing their campus police to turn over reports of crimes to the University Administration for processing. Yes, an Educational Institution can conduct a hearing to determine if a student's actions violated their Student Code of Conduct, but that is separate from their obligation to report crimes to the appropriate authorities.

REP

@Dominions Son

She didn't report it at all until a year after the incident is supposed to have happened and even then she reported it to the University's Title IX office, not the campus police.


The bottom line DS is that Universities like Columbia do not comply with their obligation to report crimes to the appropriate authority, which is a police department. Regardless of when and what department a crime of sexual violence is reported to, University policy should be for that department to report the complaint to the local police.

The Department of Education released on Thursday a list of 55 colleges and universities it is investigating for their handling of sexual assaults, ...


https://www.usatoday.com/story/news/nation/2014/05/01/department-of-education-office-for-civil-rights-title-ix-sexual-assaults/8567941/

55 institutions under investigation for improper handling of sexual violence/harassment cases. If they had turn the criminal cases over to the proper authorities and had handled the harassment cases properly, the majority of those charges would not have been filed.

Replies:   Dominions Son
Dominions Son

@REP

55 institutions under investigation for improper handling of sexual violence/harassment cases.


You're link has a 2014 date, which makes it after the the "Dear Colleague" letter. You misunderstand what they were investigating. They were not concerned about cases not being reported to police, Per obligations from other statutes, but strictly about Title IX compliance and internal student discipline processes not being vigorous enough.

Replies:   REP
REP

@Dominions Son

but strictly about Title IX compliance


The article specifically stated sexual violence in the opening paragraph being under investigation. Later in the article it specifically stated sexual violence and sexual harassment was being investigated. So the institutions were and may still be under investigation for more than noncompliance with Title IX issues.

I sincerely doubt the Dear Colleague letter had much effect on the College policies. I was unable to locate an update on that news article, but knowing people the situation is probably about the same.

Replies:   John Demille
John Demille

@REP

I sincerely doubt the Dear Colleague letter had much effect on the College policies.


I've been following this subject closely (I have college bound boys). The Dear Colleague letter has had profound effect on universities across the country.

As a result of this reinterpretation of Title IX (a one-paragraph law that forbids discrimination in the education system) there are over 100 lawsuits against universities from male students who had their rights trampled by the draconian or kangaroo courts resulting from the Dear Colleague letter. The US academia has gone totally nuts since 2011. From 'Rape Culture' to the trampling of free speech, to trigger warning of all kinds, safe spaces etc... all because of this letter.

Countless young men have been expelled or suspended from colleges across the country due to that letter from hell. Did you know that some Title IX compliance offices classify an unwanted verbal approach as sexual assault? Yes, now in some universities you can get expelled and your record forever tarnished and your future destroyed if you dare say 'want to have sex with me?' to the wrong girl. It's the craziest thing ever.

The Dear Colleague letter isn't a law, and yet it overrides many laws, like the 'Innocent Until Proven Guilty' principle. An accused's right to a lawyer. An accused's right to face their accuser. etc... All those get overridden by the 'Dear Colleague' letter.

One of the main issues that people were pressing the Trump's education secretary was the 'Dear Colleague' letter.

Replies:   REP
REP

@John Demille

I wasn't aware of what you stated, but it seems typical of the Government, Academic Institutions, and people in general.

My granddaughter is off to college next year. I've heard of it before and found it to be true in her case - some (all?) Academic Institutions require a student to sign a contract with the Institution in order to be accepted as a student. In some instances, that contract requires the student to give up their right to bring charges against another student; they are expelled if they go to the regular police and file a criminal complaint. They are required to report crimes to the University Admission or to a specified Department and subject themselves to a Hearing by its Student Advisory Council. Doing something else, such as going to the Police, is apparently a violation of the Institution's Student Code of Ethic, or whatever they call the campus rules for students. It has also been said that the students on those Student Councils are graded by their Professors for their participation in bringing the Hearing to a decision.

Not_a_ID
Updated:

@graybyrd


Sorry to report, but it already is a third-world country. We're terrified to admit it. We're trillions of dollars behind in infrastructure maintenance that can only be financed by privatization and toll booths; and we have given the police legally-blessed property seizure laws with no recourse allowed the victim.


Tollways are horribly inefficient. If you're lucky, 85 cents on the dollar will go back to the roadway. If you're Pennsylvania, you're probably only getting 45 cents on the dollar, if that.

Edit to add: And that "xx on the dollar" figure is for the money that gets budgeted for the work to be done. So that before you start making any "xx on the dollar" estimates as to the amount of money on a given project actually gets spent on the project, rather than "administrative costs" of its own making.

Replies:   graybyrd
graybyrd

@Not_a_ID

Tollways are horribly inefficient. If you're lucky, 85 cents on the dollar will go back to the roadway. If you're Pennsylvania, you're probably only getting 45 cents on the dollar, if that.


Which essentially means little real improvement to the infrastructure. Unless there is an agreement that the agreement includes massive upgrade or replacement via private investment under a 99-year operating deal, under which the private interests have total control and collection authority.

Without doing an evening of internet research, my memory recalls a large Australian corporation that has long been involved in such U.S. state agreements. I seem to recall the Ohio Turnpike is one of those as well as a number of others. The state receives enough compensation as 'owner' to keep the politicians safe from charges of selling out to private interests.

We have a tiny public bus transit system here on the island. Each time they've yielded to 'private enterprise' critics, and performed a feasibility study, it's been proven that installing fare collection boxes, accounting and audit overhead, enforcement mechanisms, and additional employees and overhead to receive and disburse the fares... it would be such an increase in operating costs as to shut the system down. Operating it on a 'free ride' basis with tax base support has kept it running for several decades now. The savings to the island population of service to seniors who no longer drive, and vocational and community college students who can ill afford car insurance and ownership, is significant. The economic freedom advantage to those two groups alone is sufficient enhancement to local community well-being to justify the tax support.

Of course, I had to open my mouth one day, several years back, and mention our 'free' bus system to a shirt-tail relation by marriage, a prominent and wealthy owner of a PacNW chain of upscale motels. His comment: "It sounded a little too 'socialist' for his taste." He opined it should either collect fares to pay its own way, or be shut down.

Of course, it was not his problem to address the needs of seniors who couldn't drive, weren't allowed to drive, or whose income wouldn't support car ownership, taxi service, and who did not have family close by to haul them around. Or the needs of the vocational and community college students living at home, needing transportation.

Jim S
Updated:

Here is another vote to return this discussion to its original topic. Because this topic interests me. So here goes.

Lazlo Zalezac is a social commentator disguised as a writer. His latest, this one, is a prime example.

Inherent in this story is the premise that the USA is slowly coming apart at the seams. By that I mean that the glue binding us together is slowly being weakened and, if not halted or reversed, will lead to the country disintegrating.

Mentioning the obvious, in that (relatively) brief span of time, the country has gone from one strongly bound by common, shared values to one of competing groups that don't care about the gestalt but are more interested in furthering their own aims. And those aims are narrow, non-inclusive and increasingly violent. This is being increasingly abetted by a leadership no longer interested in the concept of country; they are more interested in the concept of profit or their own petty beliefs. Along with a few diehard idealists driven by ideology, whether political or religious.

The discussion regarding religious organization or educational institution police forces reinforces Lazlo's storyline (and strongly, in my mind) – that of the disintegration. When people feel threatened, they can either turn to sheep and be led to the gas chambers, or they can organize and defend themselves. Extreme? Remember that every journey begins with a single step.

And they necessarily organize themselves in smaller groups. Thats what we're seeing and what this discussion re: religious/education police is pointing out. It bothers me what this portends, that of smaller and smaller groups looking for security from themselves and ignoring the central government, probably because the central government is hostile to their beliefs.

What really bothers me, though, is the speed at which it is occurring. Every society changes and evolves. That change can come slow or fast. When it comes fast, the guillotine gets rolled out. I'm beginning to get the sense that LZ is leading this towards how to go about slowing the process down.

My take, FWIW.

Replies:   REP  BlinkReader  Not_a_ID
REP

@Jim S

My take, FWIW.


By the way, did you know that President Roosevelt coined the term Muckraker as a label for people who used stories and other forms of written communcation to raise the consciousness of the public.

Replies:   Jim S
Jim S
Updated:

@REP


...that President Roosevelt coined the term Muckraker...


I think he popularized it more than coined it as the term pre-dates him.

EDIT: I'm assuming you meant Teddy, not Franklin.

Replies:   REP
BlinkReader

@Jim S

Inherent in this story is the premise that the USA is slowly coming apart at the seams.


And that what is scaring all of us the most.

When our neighbor - USSR (for you americans think Russia) collapsed not so long ago, we were scared to death that some flunkies are going to take some nukes and sent us all to shit.

Now we are watching "god ole" USA disintegrating and looking like train heading to abyss. There are not going to be only nukes, collapse of world economy as consequence of this may be much worse for us all...

Replies:   REP
REP

@Jim S

more than coined

True. Perhaps a poor way to say it. He was the first to apply the term as a label for such articles and stories.

REP
Updated:

@BlinkReader


And that what is scaring all of us the most.


And about a half of America's citizens feel the same way (i.e., we have an emotionally unstable man at the controls). Of course, the other half don't see him that way.

Replies:   BlinkReader
BlinkReader

@REP

Your president is just tinny flank of snow on top of big iceberg.
Real power lies unseen somewhere else in Washington and in Wall Street...

Replies:   graybyrd  REP
graybyrd

@BlinkReader

Your president is just tinny flank


In the Old West, the expression would be "tinhorn"...

REP

@BlinkReader

Your president is just tinny flank of snow on top of big iceberg.


I would define him as a turd floating in a toilet bowl who is trying to flush the toilet.

Jim S

I don't think you'd get much argument to the observation that the last US Presidential election did not offer a stellar field to chose from. My own take is that the better candidate won. But, then again, that isn't saying a whole helluva lot, i.e. that the other candidate sucked more than the winner. Even so, I think we (the USA) dodged a bullet. Big time.

But that election further emphasizes what LZ is writing about here. Countries fall apart when leadership isn't strong and honorable. Or turn into 3rd world hellholes. Or even 2nd or 1st.

The USA is based on the twin concepts of property rights and individual freedom. The Constitution as a document is nothing more than an agreement that the people surrender certain of those rights to a central government for the common good. Since the Civil War, there has been a long, slow erosion of those concepts. Both political parties are complicit as central government power has expanded under both.

And the trend is accelerating with most of the damage being done in the past 50 years. Nowadays the fascists are hiding in plain sight. Calls for scaling back rights delineated in the Bill of Rights are common. Free political speech is under attack. Don't think so? Trying to host a conservative speaker on a college campus nowadays is only one example. About a week ago in a speech at UC Berkeley, a former FEC commission head called for direct control on political speech in social media (and once the camel gets its nose in the tent....).
Note to our overseas readers: UC Berkeley is the University of California at Berkeley. The FEC is the Federal Election Commission.

Private property rights are being assaulted. Expansion of the state by judicial overreach is epidemic. And, never wasting a good crisis, central state police powers are expanded in response to civil strife. I could be cute here and ask – how do you spell Patriot Act – but I won't. Ooops. Guess I did.

I think this is what LZ is writing to. As I said in a previous post, I think he is a social commentator disguised as an author. And, like his recent stories that have addressed some of these issues, e.g. Jade Force of Misera, I'm really interested in where he is going to take this. He certainly has a target rich environment in which to shoot.

Replies:   sejintenej  Not_a_ID  REP
sejintenej

@Jim S

He certainly has a target rich environment in which to shoot.

-and the ability to hit the target. We just have to hope the target doesn't hit him first

Sorry -my pic is bust and apple devices can't copy and paste or mark for quotes

richardshagrin

Murphy predicts "If it can go wrong, it will". There is a corollary to that, "Murphy was an optimist".

I could be wrong, I stopped reading the story until it gets finished, but its possible Lazlo is an optimist. Or he has succumbed to the theory to be a successful author on SOL, stories have to have happy endings.

Replies:   awnlee jawking
awnlee jawking

@richardshagrin

If it turns out Peter Moore's death was faked to get the bad guys off his tail, I'm going to be mildly disappointed.

AJ

Replies:   richardshagrin
richardshagrin

@awnlee jawking

I'm sorry, why is this comment directed to me? I tried Bing to find "Peter Moore" and there are dozens of them, one was a mass murderer and there are several authors. Was he an optimist too?

Replies:   awnlee jawking
awnlee jawking

@richardshagrin

I assumed from your comment that you'd at least read a little of the story. Peter Moore is Lazlo's protagonist, and part of the story is set at his funeral.

AJ

Replies:   richardshagrin
Not_a_ID

@Jim S

Inherent in this story is the premise that the USA is slowly coming apart at the seams. By that I mean that the glue binding us together is slowly being weakened and, if not halted or reversed, will lead to the country disintegrating.


I pretty much started to despair at the "state of the nation" after seeing the response to the 9/11 attacks, and how quickly it fell apart after that.

The Obama Administration just further cemented in the downhill slide. "A crisis is a terrible thing to waste" and given his Administration was an ongoing chain of crisis, be they international in nature, or domestic(goaded by him or not), and then Democratic pundits becoming fixated on getting their way through "wedge issues." And it pretty much went to "we're fucked."

Trump just happens to be the culmination of a slow burn, and the wake up call to the people who had been hammering at those wedges. Only thing is, it doesn't seem that many of them care enough to actually listen, on either side of the aisle.

The country is coming apart at the seams, and there still remain no shortage of people that are convinced their way to "fixing the problem" is to break out a bigger sledge hammer for use on their favored wedge. Not good.

Mentioning the obvious, in that (relatively) brief span of time, the country has gone from one strongly bound by common, shared values to one of competing groups that don't care about the gestalt but are more interested in furthering their own aims. And those aims are narrow, non-inclusive and increasingly violent. This is being increasingly abetted by a leadership no longer interested in the concept of country; they are more interested in the concept of profit or their own petty beliefs. Along with a few diehard idealists driven by ideology, whether political or religious.


Amen

Not_a_ID

@Jim S

I don't think you'd get much argument to the observation that the last US Presidential election did not offer a stellar field to chose from. My own take is that the better candidate won. But, then again, that isn't saying a whole helluva lot, i.e. that the other candidate sucked more than the winner. Even so, I think we (the USA) dodged a bullet. Big time


I'm inclined to liken this past election to Trump being a Chemotherapy session we didn't need. While Hillary Clinton was Ebola. Personally, I chose neither, but if I'd been forced to chose either, I think I'd sooner take my chances under the unneeded chemo.

Replies:   Jim S
Jim S

@Not_a_ID

I'm inclined to liken this past election to Trump being a Chemotherapy session we didn't need. While Hillary Clinton was Ebola. Personally, I chose neither, but if I'd been forced to chose either, I think I'd sooner take my chances under the unneeded chemo.


To quote you, amen.

Replies:   REP
REP

@Jim S

I agree with everything you said, except Hillary being the more dangerous of our two options.

That does not mean I supported her or though she would be a good President. Before Trump threw his hat in the arena and started gaining supporters, I swore that there was no way I would vote for her. In making that decision, I assumed the Republican candidate would be a better choice. We are now seeing what we got with Trump; we will never see what we would have gotten with Clinton. That may or may not be a good thing.

Replies:   StarFleet Carl
REP

@Jim S

A family friend was misdiagnosed and the treatment was chemotherapy. His weakened condition during this unnecessary treatment resulted in his death when he contracted a viral infection.

Replies:   sejintenej
richardshagrin
Updated:

@awnlee jawking


I assumed from your comment that you'd at least read a little of the story.


I read the second chapter probably on April 5th and decided I didn't need to read it a chapter at a time. Most of the author's stories are worth reading but I decided I would wait until it was done.

The name of the protagonist didn't stick in my mind. At the point I quit he was in college, unhappy that he wasn't a freshman, political correctness made him a first year student. On that basis, why do feMALES or woMEN use those names?

Replies:   Not_a_ID  Ava G  John Demille
Not_a_ID

@richardshagrin

On that basis, why do feMALES or woMEN use those names?


Well, for one of them, there is an Iron Man joke built in. Can't speak to the other.

Ava G

@richardshagrin

In the case of "women," it's because the term "werman" fell out of fashion centuries ago.

In Old English, "man" referred to any adult human. "Werman" and "wer" meant male, and "wifman" meant female. While "wifman" changed to "woman," "werman" simply disappeared.

The word "wer" survives in "werewolf," however.

---
As for "female," the word comes from the Latin "femina," for woman, whose diminutive form was "femulla," meaning young woman or girl. This became "femelle" in Old French. When the English picked up the word, they changed it to "female."

Neither of the words were derived from anything meaning "male person."

John Demille

@richardshagrin

On that basis, why do feMALES or woMEN use those names?


Staunch feminists don't. They write womyn and they forbid 'female'.

StarFleet Carl

@REP

We are now seeing what we got with Trump; we will never see what we would have gotten with Clinton. That may or may not be a good thing.


It is a good thing. Keeping this discussion civilized - I live in a deep red state. There were some people here who supported Trump in the primary. But honestly, most of us didn't vote for him first. We wanted someone else, Cruz mostly, with some support for Rubio or anyone else BUT Hillary. (Cruz won here, don't forget.)

When it came time to mark the ballots here, 77 counties, ZERO were won by Hillary. Same as Obama, actually. And you're incorrect in one respect - we just had eight years as a solid preview of what the next four would have been under Hillary. I think if that had happened that Texas would have pulled the trigger on their own 'nuclear' option, and split into five states (which is what they CAN do legally) - that wouldn't change the balance of power in the House, but would add 8 more Republicans to the Senate.

Article IV, Section 3 - no new states shall be formed or erected within the jurisdiction of any other state; nor any state be formed by the junction of two or more states, or parts of states, without the consent of the legislatures of the states concerned ... if Texas consented, as long as there was also consent by Congress, it's a done deal.

Replies:   Not_a_ID  REP
LonelyDad

The problem with most ideologues, is that when something doesn't work, instead of trying to figure out if the ideology is correct or needs tweaking, they decide that the problem is that it either wasn't done right, so they need to try it again, or it wasn't done enough, so that they need to go further in that direction to make things work right.

Replies:   Grant  awnlee jawking  REP
Grant

@LonelyDad

The problem with most ideologues, is that when something doesn't work, instead of trying to figure out if the ideology is correct or needs tweaking, they decide that the problem is that it either wasn't done right, so they need to try it again, or it wasn't done enough, so that they need to go further in that direction to make things work right.

That is all too true.

awnlee jawking

@LonelyDad

Or, in the case of Tony Blair's UK government, they blame the public for being too stupid to understand their 'message' and hire a shedload more expensive PR consultants.

AJ

Replies:   Not_a_ID
Not_a_ID

@awnlee jawking

Or, in the case of Tony Blair's UK government, they blame the public for being too stupid to understand their 'message' and hire a shedload more expensive PR consultants.


Pretty much.

Understood Hillary's message just fine. As far as I was concerned, she was a "long term hazard" and short term risk. Coming on the heels of Obama just made her long-term prognosis several orders of magnitude worse than it would have been otherwise.

Trump on the other hand is a short-term hazard, and likely to be a medium/long term flash in the pan/General anomaly, ergo, he was the lesser threat. The constitution was specifically designed to handle scenarios like this, of course, it requires a competent Congress, which should normally have little to do with who is in the White House.

According to the initial design spec, that would be doubly or even tripley so in the Senate except that oops, someone messed with that 100 years ago.

Replies:   Jim S
Not_a_ID

@StarFleet Carl

I think if that had happened that Texas would have pulled the trigger on their own 'nuclear' option, and split into five states (which is what they CAN do legally) - that wouldn't change the balance of power in the House, but would add 8 more Republicans to the Senate.


In reality, probably only 6, as I think Austin's portion would skew Democrat in short order.

It also opens the door to other efforts at that point, like Northern California's "State of Jeferson" or another effort for the counties in Oregon and Washington east of the Cascades to secede from their respective states and potentially join up with Idaho. (Which would also wildly shift the electoral map, and part of the point)

Colorado also has its own regions that are talking of forming their own state as well. Probably missing a few other efforts elsewhere as well. (Illinois breaking free from Chicagoland for example)

REP

@StarFleet Carl

I know many Americans disagree with my opinions and many have the same or similar opinions. The future will determine who is right. I just hope we survive his Presidency.

REP

@LonelyDad

they need to go further in that direction


Yep. The King doesn't like hearing bad news. That is why messengers didn't want to deliver bad news; they preferred to keep their heads. :)

Jim S
Updated:

@Not_a_ID


Understood Hillary's message just fine. As far as I was concerned, she was a "long term hazard" and short term risk.


HRC has always suffered from the delusion that she deserved the Presidency because she has an innie rather than an outie. This coupled with a demonstrable incompetence in any political attempt, e.g. "HillaryCare" during her husband's Presidency or her own failed Sec of State tenure during Obama's, gives one reason, good reason, to believe she is probably medically delusional. Her performance at Sec of State was so bad that she actually took some of the heat off of Obama's demonstrable incompetence. She actually makes Kerry look good. Now that was a really tough accomplishment. But she was up to the task.

Then came the absolutely masterful handling of her campaign for President. I mean, she had to work hard, really hard, to lose. But, once again, she was up to the task.

My opinion (somewhat tongue-in-cheek), FWIW

Replies:   saquestor
saquestor
Updated:

@Jim S


Obama's demonstrable incompetence.


I see lots of generalities like this, but I cannot identify anyone ever writing about specific failings.

Please @JimS - or anyone for that matter - enumerate specific incidents that you believe shows his incompetence. Four or five bullet points with specifics (links if ya got 'em) will be sufficient.

I would posit that he was no worse than W or Bill or Bush Senior or Ronny Raygun. Each of them had their failings, some worse than others, but they were all bought politicians by the oligarchs. The differences I think are in how well they were at hiding their failings - or at least mis-directing a fawning press.

Replies:   Jim S  REP  richardshagrin
Jim S
Updated:

@saquestor


Please @JimS - or anyone for that matter - enumerate specific incidents that you believe shows his incompetence.


My God, talk about a target rich environment.

However, I don't want this topic to dissolve into a political discussion like many that I see here. I'd much rather keep it to discussing LZ's story or issues directly related to it. But I'll offer this. My email address is available here, so contact me and we can pursue further if you're so inclined.

Replies:   saquestor
REP

@saquestor

I sincerely doubt that Obama was incompetent, but I do believe there were numerous incompetent idiots doing things in his name.

He was the boss, and the boss has to accept the blame even if he didn't know what that idiots working for him were up to until after the idiots had acted.

saquestor

@Jim S

I don't want this topic to dissolve into a political discussion like many that I see here. I'd much rather keep it to discussing LZ's story or issues directly related to it.


Ho-ho-ho! Let's see, Brexit, private police forces, Texas succession, Japan, China, ad infinitum. All relevant to Lazlo's story I'm sure.

I don't suppose anyone else has noticed, but there is not one discussion that remains on topic. Wide ranging is a misnomer, irrelevant is a closer fit for many comments in any thread.

But OK, I'll go start a new thread where a 'target rich environment' can be explored without impinging on other subjects.

richardshagrin

@saquestor

they were all bought politicians


Politicians, mostly, don't stay bought. But most of them can be rented.

Replies:   StarFleet Carl
StarFleet Carl

@richardshagrin

I believe it was Heinlein who said an honest politician is one that once he's bought, stays bought. He may have been quoting an older aphorism, though.

Replies:   Jim S
Jim S
Updated:

@StarFleet Carl


He may have been quoting an older aphorism, though.


I suspect that saying is as old as representative government, putting its origins somewhere in Ancient Greece. But I could be wrong.

sejintenej

@REP

A friend of ours has been shunted from pillar to post and each doctor has refused to accept previous X-Rays and taken his own. In consequence her organs have failed from the radiation poisoning, she is in agony and the last hospital (I think it is the Mayo) has refused any further treatment and sent her home

StarFleet Carl

@sejintenej

her organs have failed from the radiation poisoning


How MANY xrays, and what kinds? If they did 20 full xray series of the GI tract, that would still only equate to the maximum exposure in one year for a radiation worker.

Also keep in mind that updated x-rays, especially when you're dealing with cancers, are vital. When I was young and had cancer, I was having chest x-rays every two weeks while monitoring for 4 months, then ended up with 4 full chest area CT's all within the span of two weeks prior to my surgeries. So yeah, I blew through about 50 years worth of normal background exposure in less than 6 months - but it beat the alternative.

I suspect her organs were failing already and they were trying to chart and figure out the progress of what was happening, and if she went to that many specialists in that short a period of time, it was something fast growing that was killing her, not the radiation.

Replies:   Dominions Son
Dominions Son

@sejintenej

In consequence her organs have failed from the radiation poisoning


http://www.ans.org/pi/resources/dosechart/

The safety limit for international radiation workers is 5000 millirems / year.

Exposure from medical diagnostic testing varies significantly depending on the exact procedure.

The link above has specific information. If in fact they pushed her past that safety limit far enough to cause radiation sickness, and she wasn't already terminal, then the doctors who ordered the tests and the radiologists who performed them would all be vulnerable to a malpractice suit.

Replies:   Not_a_ID
Dominions Son

@StarFleet Carl

If they did 20 full xray series of the GI tract


According to this http://www.ans.org/pi/resources/dosechart/ site, it would only take 8 upper GI tract x-rays to hit the limit.

Replies:   StarFleet Carl
StarFleet Carl

@Dominions Son

safety limit for international radiation workers is 5000 millirems / year ... it would only take 8 upper GI tract x-rays to hit the limit.


Total body dosage is 5,000 mrem per year (your entire body was exposed), any specific organ is 50,000 mrem under NRC regulations. Unless it's all hard stuff (as in intense gamma) your body can do a pretty good job over time flushing out the other stuff if it's healthy.

Unfortunately, this is also a subject I know way too much about as I was NBC while in the military (Nuclear, Biological, and Chemical warfare) and also had a civilian contractor job later dealing with radioactive material on a daily basis.

Keep in mind, too, WHERE the xray is done matters. You break your foot, you could have 100 x-rays done and it would be the equivalent of a single chest x-ray. Having said that, with any x-ray there is always at least a slight risk. Typically the need to gather the medical information outweighs the risk - but at the same time, you as the patient are ALWAYS the final arbiter. If you don't want an x-ray, then don't have one.

I had foot surgery back in February - on a tertiary follow-up visit they wanted to do another x-ray series and I said, why bother? You did one last week, and other than the infection - which was due to a dissolving stitch that didn't - there won't be any change inside.

And of course, it's always not politically correct, but people are from different ends of the gene pool. Remember Unbreakable with Bruce Willis and Samuel L Jackson? Sure, it was a movie, but you see the same thing in real life. You put adversity after adversity on someone and they keep on going, surviving, and others just ... die.

Again, I know WAY too much about this stuff personally - I'm a 34 year cancer survivor (I was actually a test patient for the now standard treatment protocol - had about a 40% 5 year survival rate then, now it's effectively 100%.) I lost four roommates in one day. And my wife is a 22 year survivor of a cancer that had a 15% 5 year survial rate back then (it's up to 85% now).

Still going strong! To quote Jason Nesmith - "Never give up! Never Surrender!"

Not_a_ID

@Dominions Son

The safety limit for international radiation workers is 5000 millirems / year.


...And someone who works 40 hours/week in Grand Central Station in NYC gets exposed to more than that in a year due to the radioactive materials that are naturally part of the granite the building is largely constructed from.

Replies:   StarFleet Carl
StarFleet Carl

@Not_a_ID

Don't get me started about what is put out downwind from a coal fired power plant. My unit was pulling manuevers one time out in an old field, we set up radiation monitors just for training and it scared the crap out of us. That old field was literally a reclaimed strip mine where they also had dumped coal ashes.

Replies:   awnlee jawking  Jim S
awnlee jawking

@StarFleet Carl

Why would coal be excessively radioactive? It's just compressed, dead plants.

AJ

Replies:   Not_a_ID
Jim S
Updated:

@StarFleet Carl


Don't get me started about what is put out downwind from a coal fired power plant. My unit was pulling manuevers one time out in an old field, we set up radiation monitors just for training and it scared the crap out of us. That old field was literally a reclaimed strip mine where they also had dumped coal ashes.


I've got the same question as AJ as to why coal ash would be radioactive. I used to work at an electric utility with both coal and nuclear plants. Never heard anything about coal ash being of concern. Even the EPA's own web page maintains:

The amount of natural radiation in wastes from coal-fired power plants is so small that no precautions need to be taken.


What I'd be more concerned with is mercury emissions. Those are dangerous. And I think enough of a problem that I haven't eaten any fish from the Great Lakes for over 30 years. And never will.

Replies:   StarFleetCarl
Not_a_ID
Updated:

@awnlee jawking


Why would coal be excessively radioactive? It's just compressed, dead plants.


Probably from Carbon 14 and certain other isotopes, such as potassium. (Which is why bananas are naturally radioactive)

Replies:   awnlee jawking
awnlee jawking

@Not_a_ID

I think Carbon 14 can be discounted. The youngest usable coal is about 100 million years old, but the half life of Carbon 14 is less than 6000 years. A piece of coal should be far less radioactive than a banana.

AJ

Replies:   Not_a_ID  StarFleet Carl
Not_a_ID

@awnlee jawking

I think Carbon 14 can be discounted. The youngest usable coal is about 100 million years old, but the half life of Carbon 14 is less than 6000 years. A piece of coal should be far less radioactive than a banana.


Except we're talking about coal-ash, not coal itself. Slightly different critter.

StarFleet Carl

@awnlee jawking

The youngest usable coal is about 100 million years old, but the half life of Carbon 14 is less than 6000 years.


Yeah, unfortunately we're talking about uranium decay here, which has a half life of 4.5 billion years, and thorium, which has a half life of 14 billion years. (Side note - when my dad worked at a nuclear site, they used to use the mantles from Coleman lanterns to test their detection equipment. They had (and may still have, I don't know for sure) thorium dioxide so they would glow when the mantle would glow. Typically it's an alpha emitter under those circumstances, but still radioactive.)

Replies:   Not_a_ID
StarFleetCarl

@Jim S

why coal ash would be radioactive


The coal ash concentrates the naturally occurring uranium and thorium, as well as all the other radioactives that are already decaying.

Keep in mind how a half life works - say you have a pound of uranium 238. In 4.5 billion years, half of it decays into U-234, which has a half life of about 250,000 years, and the other half is still U-238. In 250,000 years, you still have 8 ounces (minus a smidge) of U-238, 4 ounces of U-234, and 4 ounces of Thorium 230, which has a half life of 75,000 years.

Hey, great, sounds like that 100 million year old chunk of coal has had time for 400 decay cycles for that U-234, so there shouldn't be much left, right? Except that it still has how much U-238 in it? Which is still naturally decaying, only now it's not deep underground, it's been burned and that coal ash, which concentrated everything, has been flying where? Oh, yeah, downwind...

That's why radon gas is so nasty. In and of itself, the decay of the particles can't penetrate your clothes, so even if it decays, you're probably safe. Except you've been breathing it in and out - so if that radon decays in your lungs, it can cause problems at a cellular level in your lung tissue. Our bodies can repair a lot of damage, life is good - but at higher concentration levels, you're sleeping and breathe it in, and after 20 years you're a non-smoker who suddenly has lung cancer.

The way they found out about radon in homes was different. A guy worked at a nuclear power plant and you know how they test you when you're leaving, to make sure you're not exposed. Well, he kept showing that he had been exposed. They kept checking him, following him around work, and nothing. Then they decided to test him when he came INTO work, and he set off their monitors. Turns out his house was built on naturally occurring radioactive materials. And that's how they found out about radon in homes - before that, they'd only thought it was only an issue with deep shaft coal miners.

As for why you don't see it out there ... other than a single article in Scientific American, you're not going to see much. I'm not a conspiracy theorist, but ... let's just say there's an underlying reason why your power plant now has all those scrubbers to keep the fly ash contained, and leave it at that.

https://www.scientificamerican.com/article/coal-ash-is-more-radioactive-than-nuclear-waste/

awnlee jawking

@StarFleetCarl

As far as I can see, the article doesn't give the actual radioactivity of coal ash, just the effects of living near a coal-powered power station.

It would be interesting to know whether coal ash is dangerous enough for Kim Jong-un to weaponise it in dirty bombs :(

AJ

Replies:   Not_a_ID
LonelyDad

As has been inferred, coal ash is incredibly concentrated. Coal is predominately carbon, right? So you burn the coal, which consumes most if not all the carbon, and coal ash is what is left. Now these are just numbers I am using to illustrate a point - they have no relation to reality. But let's say that 0.01% of coal is radioactive material. So out of one kilo of coal, there would be one gram of radioactive material. Now burn out all of the carbon. All of a sudden you have concentrated that radioactive material one thousand times, or in other words, instead of one gram per kilo, you now have 1000 grams per kilo. Now take into account a coal ash fill will have metric tons of that stuff, and tell me the are is not radioactive. Yes, the overburden will attenuate the effects somewhat, but if the operators were somewhat sloppy that day, or deliberately so, and didn't put quite as much soil on top of the fill as they should have. Or some eroded away. The only good thing about a coal ash dump like that is that it is all contained, and not blowing in the wind and being concentrated in our lungs.

Replies:   Not_a_ID
Dominions Son

@StarFleetCarl

Which is still naturally decaying, only now it's not deep underground, it's been burned and that coal ash, which concentrated everything, has been flying where? Oh, yeah, downwind...


Any coal ash in a land fill that's all coal ash did not fly downwind.

Replies:   Not_a_ID
Jim S

@StarFleetCarl

As for why you don't see it out there ... other than a single article in Scientific American, you're not going to see much. I'm not a conspiracy theorist, but ... let's just say there's an underlying reason why your power plant now has all those scrubbers to keep the fly ash contained, and leave it at that.


There is a reason for scrubbers, thats to take dust out of the air. And I'm glad they do. If you ever lived in a heavy industrial area prior to 1970, you'd know what I mean.

As far as the radioactive worry, as I said previously, I'll take my queue from the EPA (I still don't believe I'm saying this but I'll believe their site on this). Repeating my earlier point, they state there is no reason to worry. They also state that coal ash is only slightly more radioactive than normal soil. I'd be more concerned about radon buildup in a tightly enclosed house.

Anyhow, here is the EPA link: https://www3.epa.gov/radtown/coal-fired-power-plants.html

Replies:   Jim S  StarFleet Carl  Not_a_ID
Jim S

@Jim S

Getting back to the original point of this topic, I finished chapter 7 yesterday. LZ is starting to drift a little. The first several chapters were oh so believable. This last one was a bit of a stretch. Anyone else feel the same?

Replies:   REP
REP

@Jim S

Anyone else feel the same?


I would be surprised if his MC followed the same pattern all the time. The circumstances are different, so a different approach is understandable.

StarFleet Carl

@Jim S

I'd be more concerned about radon buildup in a tightly enclosed house.


Yep, used to deal with that. And I agree with you on the coal scrubbers, just keep in mind that, like when I was a kid, our junior high school was heated with coal fired boilers and we had no scrubbers on those chimneys.

Think about all those houses that had coal chutes on them because they had coal fired furnaces - that radioactive ash is still in the ground somewhere. Half life of that stuff is lot longer than the 30 - 50 years ago when we DID do that. And the minor detail that dust can travel a LONG way in the atmosphere, depending upon the winds - and other countries do NOT use scrubbers like we do.

https://phys.org/news/2015-09-radioactive-contaminants-coal-ash.html

"The study found that levels of radioactivity in the ash were up to five times higher than in normal soil, and up to 10 times higher than in the parent coal itself because of the way combustion concentrates radioactivity."

This is also the same EPA that wanted to shut down a car plant because the downwind emissions from the paint shop were found to be above acceptable levels of contamination - then they measured the upwind emissions and found that the levels were much worse. Turns out the car plant was putting out cleaner air than it was taking in.

Not_a_ID

@LonelyDad

But let's say that 0.01% of coal is radioactive material. So out of one kilo of coal, there would be one gram of radioactive material. Now burn out all of the carbon. All of a sudden you have concentrated that radioactive material one thousand times, or in other words, instead of one gram per kilo, you now have 1000 grams per kilo.


I feel obligated to be pedantic here and point out that there are only 1,000 grams in a kilogram, as it literally means "thousand grams" on the scientific increment scale. ;)

Not_a_ID

@StarFleet Carl

(Side note - when my dad worked at a nuclear site, they used to use the mantles from Coleman lanterns to test their detection equipment. They had (and may still have, I don't know for sure) thorium dioxide so they would glow when the mantle would glow. Typically it's an alpha emitter under those circumstances, but still radioactive.)


Another "source" that often gets used for calibration of radiation detection equipment is potassium-chloride. Which sees regular use as fertilizer, salt for water softeners, a table salt alternative, and as a highway deicing agent in some areas.

Not_a_ID
Updated:

@awnlee jawking


It would be interesting to know whether coal ash is dangerous enough for Kim Jong-un to weaponise it in dirty bombs :(


The only way it could pose a "meaningful hazard" is if someone airdropped several metric tons of it on top of a nuclear reactor or storage site, or you were locked in a room with high concentrations of it being kept airborne.

The one scenario is implausible and technically doesn't even destroy anything. The other one is likely to kill you from black-lung long before the radiation can.

Not_a_ID

@Dominions Son

Any coal ash in a land fill that's all coal ash did not fly downwind.


Groundwater is another matter however.

Not_a_ID

@Jim S

They also state that coal ash is only slightly more radioactive than normal soil.


Of course, define "normal" in this context? There are natural public beaches in Brazil that would give a nuke worker their annual radiation exposure quota in days. Likewise, Turkey has this one town in particular that they've noticed is "naturally irradiated," and has been continuously inhabited for thousands of years. Their population also has a below average incidence rate for cancer.

StarFleet Carl

@Not_a_ID

Likewise, Turkey has this one town in particular that they've noticed is "naturally irradiated," and has been continuously inhabited for thousands of years. Their population also has a below average incidence rate for cancer.


Sounds about right. If you moved in from somewhere else, you'd probably GET cancer. But if you're from the town, your ancestors have mutated into people with a higher natural resistance to radiation. A natural Fallout 4 Perk, Rad Resistant, if you will. If they got Ghoulish, we might need to be worried. :)

StarFleet Carl

And the new chapter is up. Wow!

What's really, really scary is how much you can see this in today's corporate America - or even in today's grocery stores. My wife has issues all the time getting 2 liters and distilled water from the shelves, because of how the shelves are positioned.

Replies:   BlinkReader  Jim S
BlinkReader

@StarFleet Carl

Only shelves?

Everything is so positioned that you can reach only what corporations are willing to sell you - dearly health, dearly learning, (do I need to continue?) ...

For everything else - bend your knees :(

Replies:   graybyrd  Ernest Bywater
graybyrd
Updated:

@BlinkReader

A key point of interest is the "payola" involved; shelf display space is essentially bought... or coerced.

My elderly wife and my even more-so self feel as though we've ventured into the Valley of the Shadow of Death walking those aisles, hundreds of feet of ridiculously-processed food. Ever consider that 80 to 90 feet of breakfast cereal on display? The honey-coated sugar crystal offerings? I find the hot cereal (you know, you actually have to heat water?) buried in an eight-inch area behind the kick rail, barely above the floor.

Ernest Bywater

@BlinkReader

Everything is so positioned that you can reach only what corporations are willing to sell you - dearly health, dearly learning, (do I need to continue?) ...


the profit margin to the store drops as the shelves get lower.

Replies:   Not_a_ID  sejintenej
Not_a_ID
Updated:

@Ernest Bywater

the profit margin to the store drops as the shelves get lower.


Not exactly, this was a behabioral quirk that COSTCO initially capitalized on. There is an underlying psychological thing that goes on when you present a person with "too many choices" to make.

If you prescreen things so that a person is only left one or two choices, the odds of a sale happening increase considerably over what would happen if you presented them with 3 or 4. As once they get 3 or more choices, they may have to "think about it" and will then leave, potentially never to come back and complete the sale. (Meaning they benefit in multiple ways by restricting your choices. It increases the volume on what remains, giving them better volume/lower cost per unit, and allows for faster movement of inventory, lowering their overhead. So they actually improve their sales margins by offering you less variety in a given category rather than more.)

I forget what the underlying pysch was on the lower shelves that most people can see over the top of, but there were sales benefits noted from that as well. It's just another iteration on salesmanship on par with the grocery store that places the milk and eggs in the back corner of the store as far away from the entrances as possible, as they're the most frequently purchased items, it provides them with plenty of chances to encourage impulse buys while in the store. (Another behavior Costco and the other warehouse chains somewhat emulates, the refrigerated goods are placed almost directly opposite the single entrance into the store, while all food and drugs go back to that "far wall" along the front(/checkout side) of the store relative to the entry.)

sejintenej

@Ernest Bywater


the profit margin to the store drops as the shelves get lower.

And end of aisle positioning margins are far higher

Replies:   Ernest Bywater
Ernest Bywater

@sejintenej

And end of aisle positioning margins are far higher


end of aisle, like at the counter, are usually for items they're pushing - such as sales etc.

Replies:   Dominions Son
Jim S

@StarFleet Carl

And the new chapter is up. Wow!


LZ is still grabbing my attention but I will say that the last two chapters dealing with Newton is a little over-the-top. Read--not quite as believable. The first two chapters were so lifelike to me as to be almost scary.

But what the heck. This is fiction. The author should be allowed some artistic license, right? In any case, there is no danger of abandoning this one.

Replies:   REP
Dominions Son

@Ernest Bywater

end of aisle, like at the counter, are usually for items they're pushing - such as sales etc.


Also, items that they aren't necessarily pushing, but are typical impulse buy items.

REP

@Jim S

Better than 50 scenarios all written using the same template. :) but I understand what you are saying about over-the-top.

burlarr

@REP

The last time I checked, he had posted 56 stories and he had 39 "Incomplete and Inactive" banners; his current story count is slightly higher.


Is it strange that the second I read this I knew exactly who you were talking about. Hope he is doing ok.

Replies:   REP
REP

@burlarr

I don't thinks so, and I agree.

BlinkReader

Am I only dreaming, or plot in this story is now seriously cooking?

Replies:   Jim S
Jim S

@BlinkReader

Am I only dreaming, or plot in this story is now seriously cooking?


For me, it is heading in an unexpected direction. But that is what I truly love about LZ's stories -- they're unpredictable. So many stories at SOL aren't that way, unfortunately.

This unpredictability is what makes reading his stories so entertaining.

LonelyDad

Well, the next installment is up, and to me it looks like the calm before the storm. It's looking like he finally has everything in place to start doing something active rather then laying groundwork. I think the next two chapters will tell the tale as far as the next step.

Enjoy!

Replies:   BlinkReader
BlinkReader

@LonelyDad

I think the next two chapters will tell the tale as far as the next step


I'm already drooling :)

Jim S

Chapter 17.

Oh my.

LonelyDad

Shots fired.

Replies:   StarFleet Carl
StarFleet Carl

@LonelyDad

Shot


Splash, over.

Replies:   REP
REP

@StarFleet Carl

Splash


Gurgle, the sound of the ripples sinking a few rowboats.

Replies:   StarFleetCarl
StarFleetCarl

@REP

Gurgle, the sound of the ripples sinking a few rowboats.


Left 200, Down 50, Fire for effect.

Replies:   REP
REP

@StarFleetCarl

Left 200, Down 50, Fire for effect.


Ripples aren't the only thing sinking rowboats.

joecct

Am I the only one who doesn't think that Peter is dead but staged his "death" to get out the limelight?

I think that in the last chapter Rebecca will move someplace and be reunited with Peter. The other alternative is Peter pulls a Luke Skywalker and has become a hermit on a remote island.

Replies:   sejintenej  Jim S
StarFleet Carl

And Chapter 18 ...

Damn.

The whole product placement thing is really hitting home with me. My wife is 5'4". We go to the store to get distilled water for my CPAP and our Keurig coffee maker. (Which is how you keep the thing running, never put tap water through it. Pardon my digression.) It's nearly impossible for her to get off the shelf. She's made verbal complaints to store management, even written complaints to corporate - the bread she likes is on the top shelf as well.

The only part of my oath that I was relieved of was to obey the orders of officers appointed over me, since I was discharged. No one has ever relieved me of the 'preserve, protect, and defend the Constitution against all enemies, foreign AND domestic' part. Just a comment ... for now.

Anyone else think that this story needs to be VERY widely circulated, not just on here? Because there's a hell of a lot of us feel like we're Mary Anne McCarthy.

Replies:   sejintenej
sejintenej

@joecct

Am I the only one who doesn't think that Peter is dead but staged his "death" to get out the limelight?


Sounds like a letter to the DT (not Delirium Tremens but a book of letters to the Daily Telegraph)

sejintenej

@StarFleet Carl

We go to the store to get distilled water for my CPAP

I regret that a well known American drinks manufacturer (well, in this case I hope they didn't manufacture it) supplies a use by date for its water when sold by a competitor of MuckyD's. Hell, water's been around since time immemorial so why must we consume it to order?

It's nearly impossible for her to get off the shelf. She's made verbal complaints to store management, even written complaints to corporate - the bread she likes is on the top shelf as well.

Good for her OR is she no good at it? She should at least be supplying you both with premium meals and all goodies free of charge by companies fearful of her ire. If not, get a more effective model ;-)

Replies:   REP
REP
Updated:

@sejintenej


why must we consume it to order?


Perhaps the container, possibly plastic, has harmful impurities that leach into the water. Leave the water in the container long enough and the level of contamination becomes toxic.

Stick with tap water. At least you know what you get. :)

ETA: Are you buying filtered water that has had its impurities removed (i.e. distilled water) or spring water. Spring water is straight out of the ground and contains the source's impurities. Other than distilled water, all the water sold in a store can contain impurities. Possibly more and worse than what is in tap water.

Replies:   joyR  Dominions Son
joyR

@REP

Perhaps the container, possibly plastic, has harmful impurities that leach into the water. Leave the water in the container long enough and the level of contamination becomes toxic.


And of course, if this were the case, those authorities charged with food safety wouldn't think to ban the use of such containers, after all, that would make too much sense...

Replies:   REP
Dominions Son

@REP

Stick with tap water. At least you know what you get. :)


Don't bet on it.

Replies:   REP
sejintenej

I was careful not to name the bottling company but it has already been disclosed that they filtered tap water before selling it. In this case they claim that it is spring water but surely much of the water we consume originally came from a spring before passing through umpteen bodies.

As for plastic leeching impurities isn't that what was sterilising fish near the factories where the plastic is manufactured? Family sizes seem to have reduced from a dozen (more amongst my ancestors) to the odd one even two now - isn't that indicative? ;=).

Dominions Son

@sejintenej

much of the water we consume originally came from a spring before passing through umpteen bodies.


Every drop of fresh water on the Earth is recycled dinosaur piss. :)

Dominions Son

@sejintenej

Family sizes seem to have reduced from a dozen (more amongst my ancestors) to the odd one even two now - isn't that indicative?


No, it's more a matter of birth control and voluntary reductions in fertility.

Globally, there are inverse relationships between wealth and fertility rates and between education and fertility rates.

Wealthy people tend to have fewer kids and more educated people tend to have fewer kids.

Replies:   Not_a_ID
REP

@Dominions Son

Don't bet on it.


I know I'm getting impure water.

REP

@joyR

authorities charged with food safety


When I was a teen, a trucker friend of my mom and dad told us several stories about his dealings with food processing plants.

One day he was delivering a tanker of poison to a plant that was canning green beans. He was curious if they had a problem with insects, so he ask the guy signing for the load why they needed so much poison. The guard told him the plant used it as a preservative in the green beans they were canning. He later checked the label on some canned vegetables and the chemical name of the poison was listed.

Another day he pulled up to a meat packing plant. While waiting for entry, he got to talking with this guy who was waiting to get in to get an idea of how long the wait would be. He asked how long the guy had been waiting. The guy said he been there a week, and then went on to explain he was an FDA Food Inspector and the plant manager was probably trying to clean up all the sanitation problems before letting him in.

Replies:   joyR
joyR

@REP

The guy said he been there a week, and then went on to explain he was an FDA Food Inspector


And doubtless the IRS inspector would hang around outside for a week whilst the plant manager got his books straight...

Replies:   Dominions Son
Dominions Son

@joyR

And doubtless the IRS inspector would hang around outside for a week whilst the plant manager got his books straight...


Nope, an IRS agent would leave and come back with a SWAT team. Yes, the IRS has it's own SWAT teams.

Replies:   joyR
joyR

@Dominions Son

Exactly.

LonelyDad

Apparently, New Jersey has a regulation that all bottle drinks must have an expiration date. That is the only reason I have heard in several different discussions about this topic. I don't know if that info is true, or if it has the status of an urban legend.

Replies:   REP
REP

@LonelyDad

I did an internet search and the result seems to be the FDA does not require dates on bottled water and soda drinks. That may not apply on drinks that are subject to spoilage, such as a fruit or vegetable drink.

Manufacturers apparently started putting dates on containers or their packaging in 1983. One article said they are use by dates, which means the product may be consumable after the printed date.

The following link seems to do a good job explaining bottled water - http://quaketips.blogspot.com/2013/07/does-bottled-water-really-expire-fda.html

sejintenej

@Not_a_ID

Likewise, Turkey has this one town in particular that they've noticed is "naturally irradiated," and has been continuously inhabited for thousands of years. Their population also has a below average incidence rate for cancer.

Parts of Cornwall in England have Radon seeping into their houses - there is apparently a higher than usual rate of leukemia.

Michael Loucks

Northern Illinois has a huge radon issue. See Radon in Illinois. Many, many houses here have radon abatement systems, sealed sump pumps, and radon alarms.

It's just one more way nature is trying to kill us. :-)

StarFleet Carl

@Michael Loucks

Northern Illinois has a huge radon issue.


So did Indiana. It's related to the geology. When the glaciers scraped things down to the bedrock, they exposed the radioactive uranium still remaining in the granite. Then when they retreated, the topsoil simply covered it a little and did nothing much to stop it.

And since most houses, when they excavate to pour a basement or to just put the house on a slab, there's pea gravel put in UNDER the concrete - where did they get the pea gravel? From a gravel pit - a deep hole in the ground, digging up the radioactive rock.

I know WAY too much about this stuff - I used to be one of the guys who would put in those radon mitigation systems. EPA acceptable level is 4 picocuries per liter. I've been in homes where the level was 4,000 picocuries per liter.

Capt. Zapp

@Michael Loucks

It's just one more way nature is trying to kill us. :-)


Maybe it is nature's way of causing mutations which are to become the next evolution of humans. Of course since humans are so smart, 'we' see any changes as 'defects' and do our best to eliminate them.
:-p

REP

@Michael Loucks

just one more way nature is trying to kill us


Or is it nature defending itself against us trying to destroy the environment in which nature exists. :)

Think of Trump removing the US from the Paris Agreement. :(

StarFleet Carl

@REP

Think of Trump removing the US from the Paris Agreement.


Okay, I just did that.

I'm smiling now.

Thanks for cheering me up, it was a lousy day at work.

Replies:   Wheezer
Wheezer

@StarFleet Carl

Thanks for cheering me up, it was a lousy day at work.


Gotta agree. Trump's idiotic behavior provides endless entertainment - almost as much as his followers.

Replies:   Ernest Bywater
Ernest Bywater

@REP

Think of Trump removing the US from the Paris Agreement. :(


Yep, an agreement that doesn't directly address any important pollution aspects, is intended to cost developing countries a fortune, while have next to no effect on the global climate due to its inability to affect the major climate change factors that have been going on for millions of years. The agreement is a case of political BS at its best.

Replies:   Grant  REP
Ernest Bywater

@Wheezer

Gotta agree. Trump's idiotic behavior provides endless entertainment - almost as much as his followers.


Ayep, and watching the died in the wool Democrat supporters behaving like the ISIS people is another form of entertainment.

Grant

@Ernest Bywater

due to its inability to affect the major climate change factors that have been going on for millions of years.

It's not meant to.
It's meant to affect all the more recent accelerated changes that have nothing to do with what's been going on for millions of years, but everything to do with the changes that have occurred as a result of human activities.

Replies:   Ernest Bywater
Ernest Bywater

@Grant

It's meant to affect all the more recent accelerated changes that have nothing to do with what's been going on for millions of years,


Care to buy the Brooklyn Bridge, I got a neat deed for it?

The whole Climate Change discussion started because a bit over 200 years ago governments started up formal weather collection stations and data, and examination of that data a couple of decades back showed the global temperature has risen a few degrees since the data collection started. That started the Chicken Little screaming about Global Warming. However, they and the data total ignored the major world-wide drop of some degrees in Global Temperatures due to a a huge ash cloud in the atmosphere from a major volcanic eruption causing issues - check out an event they call The Year Without Summer. The rise noticed in the weather station data is simply the world getting back to where it was before the eruption.

The people who have been studying long term global weather and climate for decades have data going back thousands of years to show the whole Global Warming is nothing like the alarmists make it out to be. Also, there are world-wide maritime weather records going back many centuries that argue against the Human Caused Climate Change crowd. The data is there, but ignored by those who can make money off pushing crap like the Kyoto Protocol and the Paris Agreement.

In the last 500 years the sea has receded due to water being locked up in the ice caps, there are castles in the UK that were built right on the coast with a sea level entry by boar where that entry is now about 50 feet in the air and a few miles inland due to the sea receding.

There's lots of evidence there, but it's not politically expedient for those pushing the Climate Change barrow to recognise it.

Replies:   Grant
Grant

@Ernest Bywater

There's lots of evidence there,

And it all points to accelerated climate change, and the data that goes back (as you said yourself centuries, and longer with other records in the ice) all points to the current climate change not being solely due to natural causes.

You claim that that contradictory evidence is ignored, when it is actually the case that taking that evidence (not the created stuff) in to account results in the present models that show that the rate of the present changes in climate are not due to natural causes.

You may continue to choose to ignore the evidence that supports the current findings, but it doesn't make it any less valid.

Replies:   joyR
joyR

We were discussing this recently and how it started off as "Global Warming" and then became "Climate Change".

1,600 years ago the British climate was slightly warmer than it is today, we know because at that time the Romans introduced vines and winemaking.

The climate cooled a little and some 400+ years ago until a little more than 200 years ago the river Thames froze to such an extent that a "Frost Fair" was held on the ice which was sufficiently thick as to allow not only large groups of people, tents etc but entire horse carriages upon it. On those occasions that the river froze it did so for weeks at a time. Whilst this wasn't an annual occurrence, it was certainly sufficiently frequent for the fairs to evolve.

It is also interesting to note that many of the longest continuous weather recordings that exist in England are situated in the grounds of what were either large private houses or religious buildings. All originally set up by 'amateurs'. Whilst many show by their recordings that in the last 200 years temperatures have risen slightly, it is rarely mentioned that at the time of establishment these recordings were being made in the relative isolation of the countryside. Over the years the towns and cities have expanded so that almost all these locations are now well within urban areas. This is worth noting because the ambient temperature within a city is demonstrably higher than the open countryside.

It does not matter why our climate changes, the simple fact is that, as King Canute discovered, changing natural phenomena is beyond us. Except in so far as we have created the means to destroy, not change, not reverse, just destroy.

When "Global Warming" believers first made their views known Governments paid little if any attention. It was only when the concept of "Green Taxes" was proposed that things changed. What a wonderful idea, impose a tax and justify it by being necessary to save the planet. What government could resist?

So now we have a plethora of taxes imposed to combat the change, yet somehow nobody is eager to set out exactly how the money raised by these taxes has actually been used to effect change. Of course a deal deal is made about how raising tax on fuel causes fewer people to drive because they can't afford it. Yes emissions therefore decrease. But no mention of the money raised and what exactly it was spent on to practically change anything.

So after all the billions raised by green taxes to date, it hasn't been proved that the money had been spent on anything to effect climate change. And of course there is the rub. By calling it climate change without defining if the change is to increase or decrease, any change counts.

Currently mankind has managed to create enough destructive force to potentially make most of the planet uninhabitable, we are rather good at destruction. Our record on global creation is basically zero.

joyR

@Grant

You may continue to choose to ignore the evidence that supports the current findings, but it doesn't make it any less valid.


Except that 'current findings' are just that, current, not absolute.

In simple terms, for something to be scientific fact, there must exist a repeatable experiment. In other words, I have a theory, so I write out an experiment and achieve a given result. You then repeat the experiment and achieve the same result. Anyone can repeat the experiment and achieve the identical result. That process 'proves' the theory and it becomes 'fact'.

So.

I have a theory that mice hear through their feet. I create an experiment whereby I place a mouse on my desk, shout loudly and the mouse runs away. Then I remove the mouses feet....... Shout.... Mouse stays put.

Anyone can repeat this, the result is the same. Ergo it's a 'fact'.

Until of course someone points out that mice need feet to run away.... At which point 'current findings' becomes 'outdated thinking'.

Apparently at present in America a significant proportion of school children are being taught as 'fact' that the earth was created in seven days and that mankind and dinosaurs co-existed......

No doubt those who are teaching those children might well make the same statement. "You may continue to choose to ignore the evidence that supports our belief, but it doesn't make it any less valid."

Replies:   Grant
Wheezer

Wouldn't it be something if it all turned out to be a hoax and we made the world a better place for our descendants for no reason?

Replies:   joyR  Ernest Bywater
joyR

@Wheezer

Wouldn't it be something if it all turned out to be a hoax and we made the world a better place for our descendants for no reason?


Except that depending upon who you ask, and what their nationality/culture/politics/religion/etc are, the better place they would describe differs wildly.

Ernest Bywater
Updated:

@Wheezer


Wouldn't it be something if it all turned out to be a hoax and we made the world a better place for our descendants for no reason?


I wish it were, and I'm in favour of taking all the actions we can to reduce all pollution. However, what makes me angry about this Climate Change political BS is the majority of it is being pushed by the countries in Europe that are fully developed and have done the most to damage the climate in the past, and now they want the 2nd and 3rd world countries to fork over big bucks for wanting to finish developing their countries to be on a level footing with the European countries. The other upsetting aspect, is none of the money they want to collect is being spent on doing anything to improve the climate or reduce pollution.

Here in Australia we have a major issue due to conflicting International pressures - one says "You have a lot of unused space, take more migrants." While the other says, "You can't increase your carbon footprint unless you pay the rest of the world a fortune." So how the hell are we supposed to build new homes, sewer systems, power stations, food delivery systems, and work places for all the new migrants they want to shove on us and not do anything that has a carbon footprint? It's just not possible, but the Kyoto Protocol and the Paris Agreement insists they get money for doing it.

Yes, national governments should take what actions they can to reduce all pollution, but there's no way forking over large sums to the UN or any other government is going to have any beneficial effect.

Want a quick way to cut all greenhouse gas emitions by 75% - shutdown all International travel and shipping, except by wind powered or solar powered ships. Bet it won't happen, because too many of the countries pushing the Paris Agreement want the income from shipping things to the rest of the world.

edit to add: The other major issue with the Climate Change Brigade is whatever we do is only piddling around the edges compared to what Mother Nature does on the issue each day, especially in regards to volcanic activity and sunspot activity.

Replies:   Grant
Grant

@joyR

"You may continue to choose to ignore the evidence that supports our belief, but it doesn't make it any less valid."

Except that there isn't any evidence to support their belief.
And what evidence there is that doesn't support it, is ignored- same for those that consider the present rate of climate change to either be
A not happening or
B entirely due to natural causes.

So far, all the evidence is showing that the climate is changing for the warmer, and it is occurring at an increasing rate that doesn't match historical records.
Natural variation would require some natural cause, and plenty of possibilities have been put forward as to what that cause could be, but none have stood up to scrutiny.
So the other likely candidate is a result of human activity. Some possibilities were put forward and didn't stand up to scrutiny. Others have been put forward and match the observable facts.
Further causes and countering effects have been put forward over time, and some have been disproven, others continue to match what is being observed.
So at present all the evidence it for the global temperatures to continue increasing, and that will have significant impacts on water supply, and as a result food. Not to mention sea levels; bit of a problem with all the rather large population centers around the coast lines and not that far above sea level.
The only debate amongst those that actually have some idea of what it is they're talking about is just how quickly it will occur, and how bad it will be.

That some groups would use it as an opportunity to push their particular agenda shouldn't surprise anyone, and it in no way changes the facts. Just as certain groups would argue against it because it doesn't help their agenda, it still doesn't change the facts.

I prefer to follow the science (as best I can), than people's agendas, of either side.

Grant

@Ernest Bywater

edit to add: The other major issue with the Climate Change Brigade is whatever we do is only piddling around the edges compared to what Mother Nature does on the issue each day, especially in regards to volcanic activity and sunspot activity.

The effect of Sun spots on global warming is SFA as is the impact of volcanism, as volcanic output has been fairly constant (apart from several dips,not peaks) and the output from the Sun has been in decline since the 1980s.
https://www.skepticalscience.com/solar-activity-sunspots-global-warming.htm

graybyrd

I'm guessing that these pointless, contentious rants will continue until we're all standing around in melt-water up to our noses, and then somebody will fart and there it will end.

All bullshit aside, reality will intervene. Some will seek understanding; some will rush in to help, and the majority will jostle about, screaming and pointing fingers.

REP

@Ernest Bywater

its inability to affect the major climate change factors


The pollution the Accord targets is not good for our biosphere. The current levels of pollution in my area are bad enough, and they are worse in other parts of the US and the world. There is no Planet B that we can go to if we destroy our biosphere, so something needs to change.

You can call the Accord political bullshit if you want. I call it a start at reversing the damage we have already done to our biosphere.

Climate change factors will always be there. People say they can have an impact on Global Warming and I believe that is true. However, Global Warming is part of the normal cyclic climate changes our world goes through. We can't stop them, but we don't have to help them along. It doesn't matter to me personally for I'll be long dead by the time the ice caps melt. Hopefully technology will help the human race survive.

Replies:   Dominions Son
Dominions Son
Updated:

@REP


The pollution the Accord targets is not good for our biosphere.


Carbon dioxide is not pollution. It is in fact necessary for life as we know it.

In the geological past, when the dinosaurs ruled the earth and megafauna bigger than anything that exists today thrived, atmospheric CO2 levels were as high as 6000 PPM

CO2 has been as high as 4000 PPM during major ice ages.

CO2 is currently around 450 PPM.

Prior to the industrial revolution, CO2 levels were around 250 PPM

For perspective, below 150 PPM photosynthesis is not sustainable and everything dies.

From a biological perspective at geological time scales, the earth is currently recovering from dangerously low levels of atmospheric CO2.

ETA:

Commercial greenhouses typically elevate CO2 levels inside the greenhouse to 1,000 to 2000 ppm because that increases plant growth.

Replies:   Grant  REP
Grant

@Dominions Son

From a biological perspective at geological time scales, the earth is currently recovering from dangerously low levels of atmospheric CO2.

And it is those "dangerously low levels" that allowed us to come in to existence & continue to exist.
Being significantly above those levels isn't good from a human perspective.
http://e360.yale.edu/features/how-the-world-passed-a-carbon-threshold-400ppm-and-why-it-matters

Replies:   Jim S
Jim S

@joecct

Am I the only one who doesn't think that Peter is dead but staged his "death" to get out the limelight?

That thought popped into my head somewhere around Ch 14 or so.

Jim S

@Grant

And it is those "dangerously low levels" that allowed us to come in to existence & continue to exist.


Grant, anytime in recorded human history, when the earth has been warm, mankind has thrived. Anytime it entered a cold period, mankind suffered. Its logical if you think about it for just a second. Agriculture thrives on warm temperatures and doesn't on cold temperatures. Hence, when its warm, more people can be fed.

Think this is wrong? I'll offer just one example, e.g. the French Revolution. It came about directly because of the Little Ice Age destroying agriculture and taking away food from the people. As well as the callous disregard of the common people by the aristocracy, i.e. "Let them eat cake". Sort of what the elites are trying to do today with the attempt to confiscate the average man's wealth to propitiate the gods of global warming.

Personally, I don't fear warming. I fear cooling. How long ago did several thousand Parisians die because of a long, extended cold snap? I'm talking within your lifetime. It's well known that 10 times more people die from the cold than from the heat. Think thats backwards? Lets examine population of hunting/gathering societies in the moderate climate zones versus those in the less hospitable ones, i.e. Inuit versus native populations in the temperate zones in the Western Hemisphere. Which ones had higher population densities? While not definitive, it sure is indicative.

Another comment made the point that CO2 is plant food. Indirect evidence to how well high levels of CO2 support life is the dinosaurs, that were able to get so large because of the immense stores of growing plants brought about by both warm temperatures and higher levels of CO2 than what we're experiencing today. Or so I've read. This time is also the time of growth of all the plants that ended up as coal, oil and methane once it died and decayed.

Sentient life thrives in warmth and doesn't thrive well in cold. And for "scientists" to suggest that increases in CO2 to a level that is still well below what the planet and sentient life has already experienced poses a threat is ludicrous. Take a look at historical temperature reconstructions, superimpose that over what we know of mankind's development and think long and hard about what it shows. Ignore what the "elite" say and think for yourself. I have and thats why I can tell Al Gore, Michael Mann, Jim Hanson et al. to take a hike.

However, I do agree we need to do more to reduce pollution. SO2, lead, mercury and other metals present in coal wind up in the air when its burned. But with fracking, the natural gas made available will end up eventually killing coal (and without government, i.e. EPA, intervention). What is the moral thing for the US to do is make our technology available to those countries that rely on coal far more than we do, i.e. China and India. China burns four times more coal than the US does already. Both India and China are set to double their burning of coal by 2040. That is a real threat in my mind.

The Paris Treaty was about hamstringing the US by lesser economies as we're so efficient and technologically superior that no one can really compete across the entire spectrum of an economy. Pure and simple. So, naturally, all of the European countries are in favor of it. As is Asia, and others, since they were getting money for essentially doing nothing. Our money. Now if it were going for something useful, I'd be all in. Its not though.

Someone brought up recent temperature increases. According to the record, since 1890 (or 127 years), there has been a 0.8C temperature increase planet level. My thought? Well, of course the planet is warming as we're still recovering from the Little Ice Age. And the last large big one also. Glaciers have been retreating for 12,000 or so years and, apparently, is still continuing.

All of this can be found on the 'net if you want to look. My suggestion is stop drinking the Kool-Aid offered to you by those who are only after your wealth, as small or large it might be.

Replies:   Dominions Son  Grant
Dominions Son

@Jim S

To add to what Jim said, on an annual basis, extreme cold and extreme cold related weather kill around an order of magnitude more people than extreme heat and extreme heat related weather.

So yeah, bring on the warming.

REP

@Dominions Son

Carbon dioxide is not pollution


Pollution is a label we apply to many things that are harmful to we humans. In the case of carbon dioxide, we apply the label when elevated levels of CO2 create a hazardous condition for we humans. That condition may affect other life forms that in turn affect humanity.

Replies:   Dominions Son  Jim S
Dominions Son

@REP

Pollution is a label we apply to many things that are harmful to we humans. In the case of carbon dioxide, we apply the label when elevated levels of CO2 create a hazardous condition for we humans.


The US Navy has a lot of experience with humans working in high CO2 environments from it's submarine program. CO2 is not a threat to humans or any other animal life until the concentration gets over 8000 ppm.

Even if warming does cause a few extra deaths from heat, as it stands, cold kills a lot more people than heat, so global warming would still lead to a net reduction in human deaths.

Jim S

@REP

we apply the label when elevated levels of CO2 create a hazardous condition for we humans

REP, hydrous dioxide is lethal to humans when taken in concentrated forms. But I don't think we'll give up on water just yet. Same thing for plant food, i.e. CO2. To call it a pollutant is, as I've said in a previous post, beyond ludicrous.

Replies:   REP  REP
REP
Updated:

@Jim S


hydrous dioxide


Would that be written as HO2?

ETA: H2O would be dihydrogen oxide

Replies:   joecct
Jim S

Had it backwards. I stand corrected. My point regarding plant food still stands though.

REP

@Jim S

To call it a pollutant is, as I've said in a previous post, beyond ludicrous.


Pollutant: In general, substance or energy introduced into the environment that has undesired effects, or adversely affects the usefulness of a resource. A pollutant may cause long- or short-term damage by changing the growth rate of plant or animal species, or by interfering with human amenities, comfort, health, or property values. Pollutants may be classified by various criteria: (1) By the origin: whether they are natural or man-made (synthetic). (2) By the effect: on an organ, specie, or an entire ecosystem. (3) By the properties: mobility, persistence, toxicity. (4) By the controllability: ease or difficulty of removal.

http://www.businessdictionary.com/definition/pollutant.html

When CO2 or any substance reaches a harmful level, it is most definitely a pollutant by that definition.

Dominions Son

@REP

When CO2 or any substance reaches a harmful level, it is most definitely a pollutant by that definition.


Again warming is generally beneficial and CO2 isn't directly harmful in concentrations under 8000 ppm

Replies:   Grant  REP
Grant
Updated:

@Dominions Son

Again warming is generally beneficial and CO2 isn't directly harmful in concentrations under 8000 ppm


So you can live in a desert with no water? Or underwater in all the large population centres that will end up under it as the sea levels rise?

The issue with increased CO2 levels isn't whether or not we can breathe, it's about the increase in heat that is retained instead of being released back in to space.

REP
Updated:

@Dominions Son


CO2 isn't directly harmful in concentrations under 8000 ppm


One of the problems in this thread is that the focus is often on humans. In many of my posts, I have referred to the biosphere.

Definition of biosphere:

1. the part of the world in which life can exist

2. living organisms together with their environment

https://www.merriam-webster.com/dictionary/biosphere

Everyone keeps citing the CO2 concentrations that are harmful to humans. Yes, a human can tolerate CO2 concentration levels of up to about 8000 ppm. Unfortunately, that is not true of all life forms; some may be killed off at much lower levels.

As you know, a biosphere is a balanced ecological environment. Kill off one life form and its absence will affect the other life forms.

Replies:   Jim S  Dominions Son
Grant

@Jim S

My suggestion is stop drinking the Kool-Aid offered to you by those who are only after your wealth, as small or large it might be.

Sorry Jim, but the only chance I would have to drink the Kool aid would be to take it away from you.

Saying "More heat is good" due to heat or cold related deaths is specious reasoning.
It's generally accepted that people can live indefinitely in temperatures between 4-35°c. 10 minutes in high humidity at 60°c and people tend to die.
Depending on how cold tolerant people are and their clothing they can survive indefinitely in temperatures below -70°c (clothing alone can protect against the extreme cold, but not against the extreme heat & humidity) without protective clothing they may still survive for many hours in below freezing temperatures, unlike the 10min for extreme heat & humidity.
Also the population in the colder regions is much, much greater than those in the hotter regions so it's hardly surprising more people die from cold related factors than heat ones. Especially as many of those living in the cold regions rely on technology to survive, when it fails they die.
But not only is the argument specious reasoning, it's irrelevant.

The issue isn't the increased temperature itself, it's the effect on climate and sea levels.

Certain crops grow in certain areas, as they have the right soils, and right climate. The rain comes at generally the right time in generally the right amounts. What if all the rain comes in one or 2 hits instead of over several months? What if the rain fall drops by 50% What if it stops all together?
And what of all those cities on the coast? How well will they fair if the sea level is only a metre or 2 higher, let alone 4 or 5? Or more if the worse comes to the worst?

The issue isn't the absolute temperature, the issue is the effect that the increased temperature will have on sea levels and weather patterns.

Now if these changes occurred over 10,000s or even a couple of thousand years; not a problem. Thousands or even over a few hundred years; not a problem. Bit by bit coastlines would erode, deserts would develop on new areas, other drier areas would become wetter. Over time areas that flooded more & more would (eventually) be abandoned.
But if the change occurs over only a couple of hundred years, or even a few decades? How would people be able to move in time, especially when so many have their heads in the sand saying "it's not happing, I can't see anything wrong, it's all being made up to take money away from me!!!"
Dealing with the consequences will be orders of magnitude more expensive than dealing with and mitigating the issue in the first place.

Jim S

@REP

REP, so we must control CO2 in the atmosphere (although man hasn't been shown by any evidence to contribute as much as good ole' mother nature herself) in order to take care of other life? Thats what I'm taking from your statements above.

I'm not sure how to answer. If I were religious, I'd say let that be up to God. If we're to believe the Bible/Quran/whatever, thats who is responsible for this whole mess, so let let Him sort it out.

Maybe a list of creatures along with their CO2 sensitivities would be helpful. Does one exist? If not, an argument for controlling CO2 for their benefit loses a little steam. And ceases to be science based.

The problem with just about every argument made by the Control-CO2 crowd are not based on science but on, at best, conjecture. Science is verifiable, reproducable and starts with precise measurements (after a theory to be tested is postulated). All of which are missing in modern day climate "science".

So, because someone fears that other indigenous life may be killed off, we're suppose to beggar ourselves? Sorry, but that sounds like the Paris Treaty in slightly different clothes. And unacceptable.

Replies:   REP  REP  Grant
REP

I found an interesting map that you may want to play with. It shows the effect that a rise in sea level will affect the coastline. The map allows you to set different increases in sea level and view the coast line of various areas. All of the preset areas are dramatic at 60M, which is predicted under circumstances described below. Those of you in the UK will find Netherlands interesting at 60M.

http://geology.com/sea-level-rise/venice.shtml

The real question for this map is what to set as increase in sea level. An article published at the Yale School of Forestry & Environmental Studies discussed the difficulties scientists have had in predicting sea level rise. One of their sources predicted an increase in sea level of 2 meters by 2100. But a very interesting comment stated in regard to a low-ball estimate of 2 feet stated:

. . . the IPCC admitted, did not include the possibility of rapid ice flow from Greenland or the Antarctic into the sea. That was clearly important — those two ice sheets alone hold enough water to raise sea level by 65 meters, . . .


http://e360.yale.edu/features/rising_waters_how_fast_and_how_far_will_sea_levels_rise

Replies:   Dominions Son
Dominions Son

@REP

Everyone keeps citing the CO2 concentrations that are harmful to humans. Yes, a human can tolerate CO2 concentration levels of up to about 8000 ppm. Unfortunately, that is not true of all life forms; some may be killed off at much lower levels.


Name one, along with the CO2 concentration level that would be fatal to it.

Dominions Son

@REP

I found an interesting map that you may want to play with. It shows the effect that a rise in sea level will affect the coastline.


The problem for Venice is not sea level rise, but land subsidence. The city is sinking.

Sea level rise is just a few mm/year and is not showing any signs in of acceleration in actual observations of sea level.

Sea level rise of more than one meter in a century is not realistic.

Cities can and have moved on century time scales.

Replies:   Grant  Not_a_ID
REP

@Jim S

If not, an argument for controlling CO2 for their benefit loses a little steam.


Or does it mean we should err on the side of caution.

Science is verifiable, reproducable and starts with precise measurements


Unfortunately, the cycle under discussion repeats every 100,000 years with about 10,000 of those years in the warm portion of the cycle and 80-90,000 years in the ice age portion of the cycle. I don't think we can or want to wait for reproducible.

REP

@Jim S

So, because someone fears that other indigenous life may be killed off,


No. We have documented proof that we humans have contributed to the extinction of several life forms. By continuing to ignore the effects we have on other life forms, we will probably contribute to extinction of several more also.

What most people don't want to acknowledge is killing off other life forms that we humans depend on hurts us. Most people do not know the interrelationship between a specific life form and humanity. You may not see or understand that relationship, but it is there and killing off to many life forms will bite you in the ass.

Replies:   Dominions Son
Grant

@Jim S

Science is verifiable, reproducable and starts with precise measurements (after a theory to be tested is postulated). All of which are missing in modern day climate "science".

Theories have been proposed, measurements of past conditions have been taken, current and older measurements of weather have been used.
The current models that are predicting the future also predicted past conditions, using the earliest available data.
How can you consider that to be "missing"?

Grant

@Dominions Son

Cities can and have moved on century time scales.

Much smaller and much less numerous than exist now.
And they probably didn't wait till things were critical to start moving.

Replies:   Dominions Son
Ernest Bywater

While you think about and discuss a possible rising sea level, you need to consider the way the sea level has lowered over the centuries. Look at Harlech castle in Wales:

https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Harlech_Castle

There are six images on the page. The top image is a modern photo, and the green area in the background is tilled land on what used to be the sea bed. The second is an artists drawing of what it looked like when it was finished being built in 1289, while the third image is a map drawing of it in 1610. The fifth image is a map of the castle on the hill at the time it was built, note the Water Gate in the map for ships to dock at, as shown in the artist's impression as image 2.

This is an engraving of the castle from 1729, note where the sea is close to the castle rock:

https://commons.wikimedia.org/wiki/File:Harlech_Castle_in_Merioneth-Shire.jpeg

This is modern photo of the area from what used to be the sea bed, notice how much has been built on the land made available from the receding sea level.

https://commons.wikimedia.org/wiki/File:Harlech_Castle_from_Royal_St_Davids_-_geograph.org.uk_-_672261.jpg

When looking at the castle on Google Earth today see a lot of land around it and the sea shore is about 4,000 feet away from Castle Rock, and you have to look well up the rock to see where the remains of the Sea Gate are.

This shows how much the sea level has dropped in the last 800 years, due to a cooling global climate, and it has a long way to go to be back to that level.

The problem is the bulk of the people touting the Climate Change issues focus only on the last few hundred years and anything they perceive as having changed in that time. They totally ignore what went on centuries ago, hell many of them deny the existence of the Year Without Summer which was caused by the eruption of Mount Tambora in April 1815.

https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Year_Without_a_Summer

..........

Replies:   joyR  Not_a_ID
Dominions Son

@REP

No. We have documented proof that we humans have contributed to the extinction of several life forms.


Not by any means as indirect as CO2.

Replies:   REP
Dominions Son

@Grant

Much smaller and much less numerous than exist now.
And they probably didn't wait till things were critical to start moving.


True, but they also did it without any major construction equipment much beyond hand tools and human muscle.

Current Sea level rise rates are around 3mm/year, that's 0.3 meters / century or 3 meters every 1000 years.

The only cities for which this issue will be critical in the next century are a tiny number of coastal cities that are already below sea level*.

*most of New Orleans for example, but again, that's due to land subsidence, not sea level rise.

Replies:   Grant
Grant

@Dominions Son

Current Sea level rise rates are around 3mm/year, that's 0.3 meters / century or 3 meters every 1000 years.

If the rate remains constant.
And in different areas the rate of change is different to that of the global average. In some it's more, others less.

The more land based ice that melts, the greater the rate of increase will be.

Replies:   Dominions Son
Dominions Son

@Grant

The more land based ice that melts, the greater the rate of increase will be.


There is only one place in the world with enough land bound ice to make that much of a difference, Antarctica. The average annual temperature (excluding the West Antarctic peninsula) is −57 °C

Replies:   Grant
joyR

@Ernest Bywater

When looking at the castle on Google Earth today see a lot of land around it and the sea shore is about 4,000 feet away from Castle Rock, and you have to look well up the rock to see where the remains of the Sea Gate are.


This picture from the same site shows a much less dramatic viewpoint.

Reconstruction of the castle in the early 14th century, seen from the sea

Grant

@Dominions Son

There is only one place in the world with enough land bound ice to make that much of a difference, Antarctica.

While Antarctica would result in a huge increase in sea levels, the Greenland ice sheet would be good for around 6 metres all by itself.
Given that the amount of ice on Greenland has been slowly reducing over the last 8-10 years, a larger increase in sea levels over a shorter period of time is becoming more likely.

Replies:   Dominions Son
Dominions Son
Updated:

@Grant


While Antarctica would result in a huge increase in sea levels, the Greenland ice sheet would be good for around 6 metres all by itself.


The problem is, to actually melt Greenland in under any other than 10K years, it would take a drastic increase in temperatures well beyond the worst cases predicted.

ETA: Much if the increased melting (which would still take millions of years to melt the entire Greenland ice cap) is not due to increases in temperature, but is rather due to an accumulation of black carbon(soot) on the surface of the ice cap.

Replies:   Grant  REP
Grant

@Dominions Son

The problem is, to actually melt Greenland in under any other than 10K years, it would take a drastic increase in temperatures well beyond the worst cases predicted.

Yet it wouldn't require all of it to melt in a relatively short space of time to have a significant impact. Even 20cm will have a big impact on coastal areas.
And the effects on ocean currents could reduce the rate of warming by taking more heat from the system, or make it worse by putting more in.
Not to mention the effect on weather patterns. More rain & less snow there would increase the melt rate above and beyond current estimates.

And whether or not sea levels rise by 6 metres or 6mm, the effect on weather patterns from the results of global warming will be much more immediate and severe on pretty much everyone, not just those in low lying coastal areas.

Replies:   joyR  Dominions Son
joyR

@Grant

And whether or not sea levels rise by 6 metres or 6mm


Wouldn't you think that the difference between a rise of 6m or 6mm is actually significant?

If I'm standing at sea level and it rises by 6mm my toes are not covered.

If I'm standing at sea level and it rises by 6m the person standing on the shoulders of the person stood on my shoulders will drown.

Replies:   Grant
Grant

@joyR

And whether or not sea levels rise by 6 metres or 6mm


Wouldn't you think that the difference between a rise of 6m or 6mm is actually significant?

You really do appear to be having problems with reading and comprehension.

If you had managed to read past the out of context portion you quoted, you would have seen that regardless of the significance of a 6 metre increase in sea levels, the effects of the changes in climate would be mush worse.

Replies:   REP  joyR
garymrssn

I was enjoying this thread until people started beating dead horses.

Dominions Son

@Grant

the effect on weather patterns from the results of global warming will be much more immediate and severe on pretty much everyone, not just those in low lying coastal areas.


There has been no increase in the frequency or severity of hurricanes, tornadoes or thunder storms.

Such destructive weather events get their power not from heat, but from temperature gradients.

According to the predictions of the people pushing the global warming catastrophe meme the coldest parts of the globe will warm the most.

The temperature gradients will be reduced, the logical conclusion is fewer sever destructive storms, not more.

Replies:   Ernest Bywater  REP  Grant  Not_a_ID
Ernest Bywater

@Dominions Son

There has been no increase in the frequency or severity of hurricanes, tornadoes or thunder storms.


A major part of the cause behind people believing there's an increase is the larger population spread over the world are now much better at surviving and recording such events. Thus some think they are more, when all it is many of the previous ones weren't seen and recorded.

Replies:   Dominions Son
Dominions Son

@Ernest Bywater

A major part of the cause behind people believing there's an increase is the larger population spread over the world are now much better at surviving and recording such events.


There have also been major improvements in storm detection technology.

Satellites detect even hurricanes that never make land fall.

Doppler radar can see even the weakest tornadoes even if they don't strike populated areas. The increase in tornado counts has largely been in the weakest category (F1) there has been no increase in the strongest category(F5). The experts responsible for tracking this data will tell you that the apparent trend is a false trend created by improvements in detection.

There are now systems that can detect the EM radiation spike from a lightning strike. Detectors have been installed all over the US. They can not only detect each strike, but triangulate it's location fairly precisely.

Michael Loucks
Updated:

@Ernest Bywater, @Dominions Son

This is similar to the improvement in detection ability for micro contaminants. Detecting 1 part per million vs 1 part per billion vs 1 part per trillion. As detection gets better, you read reports of "ZOMG There's LEAD IN THE WATER!", while failing to say it's 1 part per trillion and the cost of removing it (if it were possible) is billions of dollars and it would have no measurable health effects if it's left in. The only thing people hear is the "ZOMG" headline.

Cost is something people fail to take into account. Nothing is free, and you have to compare the cost with the value obtained. Spending a hundred million bucks to save a million lives is probably a good deal for any society. Spending a hundred million bucks to save ONE life probably isn't.

REP

@Dominions Son

Not by any means as indirect as CO2

Just stated that we have. Didn't say how.

REP

@Dominions Son

black carbon(soot) on the surface of the ice cap.


Probably the result of all that coal the Paris Accord is trying to keep from being burnt.

Replies:   Not_a_ID
REP

@Grant

You really do appear to be having problems with reading and comprehension


lighten up Grant. She has just as much right to her opinions and to support them by comments you don't like as the rest of us.

Replies:   Grant
REP
Updated:

@Dominions Son


power not from heat, but from temperature gradients.


Temperature is a measurement of heat energy, so you could call it a heat gradient.

Replies:   Dominions Son
Dominions Son

@REP

Temperature is a measurement of heat energy, so you could call it a heat gradient.


Nope, if everywhere is the same temp there is no gradient. To have a gradient, you have to have an area of high energy and an area of low energy.

Replies:   REP
REP
Updated:

@Dominions Son


, you have to have an area of high energy and an area of low energy.


That is what I said.

Temperature is a measurement of heat energy. A low air temperature means the air has a low level of heat energy. A high air temperature means the air has a high level of heat energy. Thus, a temperature gradient between two points is nothing more than a way to express that there is a heat gradient between the two points.

LonelyDad

While this is all fascinating, I fail to see what relationship it has to the story the thread started with. I came here today to see others comments on the developments revealed in today's chapter. Instead, I am treated to a bunch of comments from people talking past each other while riding their favorite hobby horse. Please, take this feldercarb somewhere else. And before you jump all over me, I am just as concerned as all you are, I am just able to stay focused on what this thread is supposed to be talking about. There are a lot of places on the web where this discussion is taking place. Find one and leave this thread to get back to its original focus. Please.

Replies:   Jim S  REP
Jim S
Updated:

@LonelyDad


And before you jump all over me, I am just as concerned as all you are, I am just able to stay focused on what this thread is supposed to be talking about.


You make a good point. Okay. What do you think of Ch 19? Do you feel as I do that in the end we'll find that Peter has faked his own death?

Replies:   garymrssn
joecct

@REP

dihydrogen monoxide

REP

@LonelyDad

Please


There is only so much that can be said about a chapter. So between chapters, you get thread drift.

garymrssn

@Jim S

You make a good point. Okay. What do you think of Ch 19? Do you feel as I do that in the end we'll find that Peter has faked his own death?


I've been having the same suspicion. However, past experience warns me not to guess where a Lazlo Zalezac story will go. His ability to surprise me is one of the reasons I enjoy his stories so much.

LonelyDad

It's obvious from the discussions during and before the funeral that society has settled down again into a new matrix, so some time has to have passed. Also, since his children are now grown (I'm not saying adult yet) it would have to be at least 20 to 30 years later. And unless he has some plan to fake Rebecca's death as well he wouldn't do it.

Now, as to the chapter, I see the pot as just starting to get to the point where bubbles are appearing as part of a rapid boil. I think it is going to take a couple of election cycles to where things boil over. I haven't decided whether some of the corporations will wise up enough to police themselves before then, or if they will get cleaned up alongside the government. In those states that are now Independent I can see changes in laws and regulations that will impact far beyond their borders, and add fuel to the fire when people see that government can work if the right attitudes and controls are in place. This is going to put a lot of pressure on the corporations and the power brokers, and that is going to result in some very ugly scenes that will just add more fuel to the fire. It will be a very interesting read.

Replies:   REP  StarFleet Carl
REP

@LonelyDad

Also, since his children are now grown (I'm not saying adult yet) it would have to be at least 20 to 30 years later.


I was curious and did some checking.

Peter met Rebecca at the time of the Galileo Industries incident and he was 23 then. They waited three years to get married. So far, the only mention of children is George and he is 25 at the time of the funeral. Assuming George was born 1 year after they married, Peter would be 52 at the time of his death. If George wasn't conceived right away, Peter could be older.

I agree with Garymrssn that we can't take anything for granted. However, Lonelydad made a good point about Peter not leaving Rebecca behind. Peter was also very close to his son George, so I can't see Peter and Rebecca leaving George behind. If Peter is alive and has plans to disappear, all 3 of them would go together. That seems unlikely to me. To offset that, many of the people Peter sent to prison have recently or will be getting out of prison and may want revenge. That would be a good reason to disappear.

Replies:   Jim S
StarFleet Carl

@LonelyDad

This is going to put a lot of pressure on the corporations and the power brokers, and that is going to result in some very ugly scenes that will just add more fuel to the fire.


"Only a fool would have voted for the bill. Congress was filled with fools. The bill passed."

You have TEN MILLION people in Washington, D.C., that are upset about this bill being passed. Can you say lynch mobs?

Also the minor detail that this is the real reason we have a Second Amendment. And if Congress were idiots enough to decide the First Amendment didn't matter, they'd say the same about the Second. Which WILL result in 2ACW.

There'd be no way Texas would tolerate this, and there's not a state that borders Texas that wouldn't stand with the Lone Star State should that happen.

Replies:   richardshagrin
Grant
Updated:

@REP

lighten up Grant. She has just as much right to her opinions and to support them by comments you don't like as the rest of us.

I wasn't commenting on their opinion, if you read the posts in question you might see that. Or not.

What i was commenting on was the quoting out of context and not reading (or at least not taking notice of) all of what was posted and the rather snarky attitude being delivered with the out of context quoting.

Replies:   REP
Grant
Updated:

@Dominions Son

There has been no increase in the frequency or severity of hurricanes, tornadoes or thunder storms.

Over the plant as a whole, maybe, however there have been changes in the frequency and severity of tropical & other storms in various regions.
Some are getting less storms than they used to, others more. Some are getting less severe storms, others more.

The temperature gradients will be reduced, the logical conclusion is fewer sever destructive storms, not more.

That will be the eventual outcome, however while things are changing the rate of change in may areas will be greater than the rate of change in others, leading to increased temperature gradients.

And I need to again make the point- the biggest issue will be the change in climate affecting food production and living conditions.
More & greater severity of weather conditions when they occur will just be the icing on the cake.

Replies:   Dominions Son
Dominions Son

@Grant

Over the plant as a whole, maybe, however there have been changes in the frequency and severity of tropical & other storms in various regions.


That isn't a global catastrophe.

And I need to again make the point- the biggest issue will be the change in climate affecting food production and living conditions.


All current food crops produce better under higher CO2 concentrations and warmer temperatures.

Aside from direct impacts to photosynthesis, increased C02 leads to plants, including domesticated food crops using water and other resources more efficiently.

Sorry, there is exactly zero empirical evidence for any eventual negative impact on food production from any remotely plausible warming scenario.

Replies:   Grant
Grant

@Dominions Son

Over the plant as a whole, maybe, however there have been changes in the frequency and severity of tropical & other storms in various regions.


That isn't a global catastrophe.

Even though it's happening all over the globe? Sure, the effects at present are "minimal", and the incidences small in number, but over time as they become more frequent, more severe, and more wide spread they in themselves could result in a global catastrophe.

But once again you appear to be missing the point.
Certain crops require certain climates in order to grow. Change the climate, no more crop.
And even if there is a crop, it's not much good if it's destroyed by a significant weather event before it's harvested.

All current food crops produce better under higher CO2 concentrations and warmer temperatures.

Yet they still need water. They still need the right amount of water at the right time. They still need the right temperatures- more is not always good.

Doesn't matter how wonderful the levels of CO2 or the temperatures are if a crop requires 6 months of wet conditions and then 1 month dry for harvesting, and all the rain comes down in 1 month, or it rains for 8 months.
And as much as many crops like the heat, others don't do so well. Still others require a period of low temperatures in order to fruit.

As bad as the effect of increased sea levels will be when they do occur, the effect on climate is the one that will have the greatest impact.
For whatever reason you seem to choose to ignore this fact.
More CO2 or higher temperatures doesn't do plants any good if they are under water. It doesn't do them any good if it's too hot & they die from the heat. It doesn't do them any good if there isn't enough water.
And the higher CO2 and resulting temperatures will result in these other effects.

Jim S

@REP

Regarding your time line, I agree. Some of LZ's stories, however, lose consistency with actual time. Hunter was a good example of that, esp. during the military actions starting in India.

By your (correct) time line, roughly 25- 30 years are needed to bring the story up to the time of his death. That allows plenty of time for the political changes that are starting to take place.

I wonder how many chapters to go?

Replies:   REP
REP

@Grant

i was commenting on was the quoting out of context and not reading (or at least not taking notice of) all of what was posted


In other words, you were complaining because she didn't address your entire post, just the aspect she felt you didn't address fully.

REP
Updated:

@Jim S


roughly 25- 30 years are needed to bring the story up to the time of his death.


The key issue in Peter's age is LZ hasn't defined the cause of death. If his age was 65 or older, then natural causes would be a high probability. At 52, it is likely his cause of death was something other than old age or an age related problem.

If Peter's cause of death was questionable, there would have been an autopsy. If his body wasn't mangled, then there may have been an open casket viewing at the mortuary. With no mention of an autopsy or viewing to counter the theory of a faked death, the possibility of a faked death goes up.

joyR

@Grant

If you had managed to read past the out of context portion you quoted, you would have seen that regardless of the significance of a 6 metre increase in sea levels, the effects of the changes in climate would be mush worse.


Exactly how is a claim you made in the course of your argument, "out of context"?

There is a great deal of significance between a rise of 6 metres and 6 millimetres. Not only because of the very large difference between them, but because a few fairly simply maths calculations would show the vast difference in the volume of water necessary to effect such changes globally.

joyR

Perhaps rather than focussing on the how and why of Peter's death, it might be more germane to consider the selflessness of a person who manages so much and yet is content that even close family are ignorant of his accomplishments.

Granted it is much safer to remain in the shadows and certainly better protection for those not involved directly to be kept in the dark, but it's rare thing to find such a person.

Perhaps in this case it's not the destination (death) that is important, it's the journey made before reaching it.

Replies:   Zom
Zom

@joyR

Peter's death

I suspect he isn't really dead. Just taking care of himself?

Replies:   joyR
joyR

@Zom

I suspect he isn't really dead. Just taking care of himself?


As LonelyDad pointed out...

And unless he has some plan to fake Rebecca's death as well he wouldn't do it.

Replies:   Zom
Zom

@joyR

some plan to fake Rebecca's death

A smart person, and he is a hat full of graticules above smart, would have Rebecca die/disappear at a different time. After Peter would allow him to pave the way.

Jim S

LZ's portrayal of Patricia thus far leads me to believe he has something special planned for her. Could very well be wrong on this but he just keeps piling up her arrogance, stupidity and pure blindness. I have to think the brother is also in for a similar fate. Or it may just be a plot device to keep interest.

Replies:   REP
REP

@Jim S

Isn't Peter's funeral approaching the point were the guests are offered to describe their memories of the deceased. If so, the family and guests are going to be in for a big surprise when they put all the stories together.

LonelyDad

And the revolution begins...

sejintenej
Updated:

@REP


When CO2 or any substance reaches a harmful level, it is most definitely a pollutant by that definition


The problem is defining "harmful levels".

About two months ago the subsidiary of a major US drinks company was found guilty of manufacturing a drink which was, according to the judge, "poisonous".

(I feel he was exaggerating) but ....

It turns out that the drink contained benzoic acid at a level far above FDA approved levels. The problem is that benzoic acid and vitamin C can form benzene which is a carcinogen. The judge has ordered that Fanta and Sprite bottles be labelled with a warning about drinking with vitamin C. stated that He also

said "Soft drinks manufactured by ***************** ought to be fit for human consumption irrespective of color or creed,"

Worse still is that acceptable levels differ according to local climate - that approved level in the UK is well below that approved by the FDA because we have a cooler climate.

See http://edition.cnn.com/2017/03/28/africa/nigeria-coca-cola-case/index.html

Hence an example of how "approved levels" are not necessarily safe.

-------------
As for the story, is :Peter actually dead? He has upset many many people and a faked death would enable him to go back into the shadows. I have too high a respect for Lazlo to believe everything he writes. (I have just reread a story where the heroine is publicly buried by her parents so she can live with and marry her brother.)

Replies:   REP  REP
richardshagrin

@StarFleet Carl

There'd be no way Texas would tolerate this, and there's not a state that borders Texas that wouldn't stand with the Lone Star State


Louisiana?

Replies:   StarFleet Carl
REP

@sejintenej

The problem is defining "harmful levels".


I know. :)

That is why I just stated "a harmful level" without specifying a specific level that someone defined as harmful. You may have also noted that I did not specify harmful to a specific species since a harmful level will vary from species to species. There are also variations in resistance to a specific substance within a species that would have to be taken under consideration.

Ferrum1

Lazlo's definitely good at spinning a yarn. His Damsel in Distress series was fun, too.

Anyone have an idea how realistic all this computer stuff is? I keep hearing people talk about the dark web and silk road and things like that, but can't say what is or isn't really possible. Considering how much Lazlo is on-target with the rest of the story, I'm betting he's a computer guru and the technical stuff could be, at least, theoretically possible.

Can't wait to see what happens next!

Replies:   Dominions Son
REP
Updated:

@sejintenej


Peter actually dead?


Good question. I don't know, and it is sort of a side issue for me.

As I said in an earlier post, there was no mention of an autopsy or of the family receiving people who come to pay their respects before the funeral; it is up to the family as to have an open or closed casket at that type of reception. If Peter is not dead, then it would obviously have been a closed casket.

I suppose we could build a good case for Peter being alive or dead. You are right about not being able to predict what LZ has in mind. It could go either way. Furthermore, perhaps there is more that Peter needs to do and he just needs to drop out of sight for a while, rather than disappear forever. He probably wouldn't worry about his adversaries; after all, he can take care of himself. :)

Replies:   Dominions Son
Dominions Son

@Ferrum1

I keep hearing people talk about the dark web and silk road and things like that, but can't say what is or isn't really possible.


https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Dark_web

The dark web is the World Wide Web content that exists on darknets, overlay networks which use the Internet but require specific software, configurations or authorization to access.[1][2] The dark web forms a small part of the deep web, the part of the Web not indexed by search engines...


Silk Road: https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Silk_Road_(marketplace)

Replies:   Ferrum1
Dominions Son

@REP

If Peter is not dead, then it would obviously have been a closed casket.


They can make some pretty convincing dead bodies these days. As long as you don't let anyone get close enough to touch it.

Replies:   REP
REP

@Dominions Son

They can make some pretty convincing dead bodies


True, but it is much easier to just have a closed casket and absolutely no chance of someone touching the "body".

Ferrum1

@Dominions Son

But what can you realistically do with those things? Are they how our hero in the story is getting around to do what he's doing?

Of course, I'm not sure what any of that means since it's so out of the realm of my experience. I imagine you can set up some kind of website on the dark web or deep web and do all kinds of nefarious things. Computers are like magic to me, I'm always amazed at the wizards who've mastered them!

Replies:   Dominions Son
StarFleet Carl

@richardshagrin

Louisiana?


Don't confuse New Orleans and Baton Rouge with the entire state.

Even Texas has Austin, after all.

Dominions Son
Updated:

@Ferrum1


But what can you realistically do with those things?


You can do anything on the Dark Web that you can do on the regular web, but the government can't track what you are doing.

You can view porn on the web, well you can find a lot of porn on the dark web, but a lot of it is hard core stuff that is illegal in most are all jurisdictions, things like child porn.

You can buy and sell goods and services on the web. You can do that on dark web with the addition that illegal goods (drugs) and services (murder for hire) are readily available.

There are lots of forums on the web, like this one. There are forums on the dark web where people discuss illegal activities.

If you can do it on the public web, you can do it on the dark web.

If you can't do it on the public web because it's illegal, you can do it on the dark web.

If you can't do it on the public web because it's technologically impossible, you can't do it on the dark web either.

The Silk Road, was just the first dark net, an online black market. You could do anything on the Silk Road that you could do in any regular physicaal black market, except you don't need to leave your living room and don't have to meet with shady characters in meat space. Think Ebay for recreational drugs.

The US government shut down The Silk Road back in 2013.

Replies:   Jim S
Jim S

@Dominions Son

The US government shut down The Silk Road back in 2013.


According to the link you gave earlier, another version is up and operating.

Jim S

In some on LZ's lesser stories, they bog down at some point. I've been waiting for that to happen. So far, it hasn't. I just finished Chapter 22 and like the way the story seems to pivot, keeping it fresh.

StarFleet Carl

And now we have recognition by Peter that there could be a bit of trouble with what he's doing.

Also, he's exactly correct. This isn't the forum to discuss it other than as a commentary on the story, but the 10th Amendment is designed exactly as he mentions - if it's not enumerated in the Constitution as a power of the Federal Government, then it's reserved for the States or the people. That the Federal Government has taken all of these powers over the years through orders and simple paperwork doesn't make it Constitutional - and it sounds like Peter is setting things up for the States to do a bit of a bitch slap on the Feds.

Replies:   graybyrd
Ferrum1

I've been enjoying the story, overall. It's interesting to see him work the typical talking-points you see in the news into the story, making it very realistic.

He's starting to lose me, though, with the preaching because it's not well thought out and accurate. For instance, his latest chapter has a question in it about the stock market can be up 12%, but his retirement fund is only up 2%. He's implying that someone stole 10%, but that's not at all how the stock market or retirement funds work.

By using that as an example of wrongdoing on the part of big businesses and banks, he undermines the credibility of the overall story. Unless I missed something in how he worded it..... which could very well be.

It's a great illustration, I think, of how authors can paint themselves into a corner when working current events or historical matters into their tales.

Replies:   joyR  Jim S  REP
joyR

@Ferrum1

By using that as an example of wrongdoing on the part of big businesses and banks, he undermines the credibility of the overall story.


As the story isn't about the way 'big money' actually works, I think LZ's use of 'poetic licence" is forgivable, mostly because a full explanation would be longer than the entire story.

From the point of view of the vast majority that don't understand 'big money', it is entirely in line with their opinion.

Don't forget that most people think that in a 'crash' or depression, that money somehow magically disappears. Very few stop to think that when you lose on the stock market it's because you paid for something that turned out to be worth less than you paid, but that the money didn't disappear, the person you paid still has it.

Jim S

@Ferrum1

He's starting to lose me, though, with the preaching because it's not well thought out and accurate. For instance, his latest chapter has a question in it about the stock market can be up 12%, but his retirement fund is only up 2%. He's implying that someone stole 10%, but that's not at all how the stock market or retirement funds work.


From what I know of investing, its possible but difficult. Extremely difficult.

Within a short time frame, market performance (or any individual investment) is moving up, down or sideways. But if you dig into more discrete slices of time, you'll find performance going up and down around the trend line for the entire period. For example, stocks have high, low, open, and close prices. Open and close are from the end points of the trading day. But examine the same stock prices at 5 minute intervals and you'll likely see what I mean. Oft times that line will resemble a sine curve moving around a straight line drawn through the twelve prices (hourly vs 5 minute)

What I think LZ was getting at was the institution using either inside knowledge or better knowledge to buy high and sell low for the grandfather's account while taking the other side of the trade to buy low and sell high. Unscrupulous as hell as well as being illegal as hell. And depending on the number of intermediates used, extremely hard to detect.

Doing something like that results in the winner stealing all the growth in a stock and avoiding all the decline. Just that simple.

The time frame isn't important. My example is one day, but it could easily be applied to high, low, open, close by month versus daily performance for instance.

Even though I understood this one, though, I, like you, lost him on a couple of others. He does ramble at times. I've noted it in some of his other stories as well. However, I don't think it detracts much from them. Like any work of fiction, one must, I believe, allow some artistic license.

I do like where he is going with the 10th Amendment as well. Like the author, I share a reverence for the Bill of Rights. All of them. I like it when they're highlighted in a story.

Replies:   Ferrum1
Ferrum1

@Jim S

The way he wrote it, he's saying that there's something wrong if the market as a whole is up 12% and his retirement portfolio isn't also up 12%. This ignores the fact that the entire market is huge, but retirement portfolios only deal with a very small collection of stocks.

It's entirely possible for a retirement portfolio to grow only a few percentage points or remain flat, and it's entirely logical and legal. It all depends on the goals of the portfolio (safety v. high-risk/high-return) and the stocks that portfolio includes. Lazlo's suggesting that if the stock market is up X, then all the funds and portfolios should also be up X -- which simply isn't the case.

It wouldn't have caught my attention if he hadn't been so good about keeping things realistic up to now. The last two chapters have gotten into some representations that just aren't.

Replies:   garymrssn
garymrssn

@Ferrum1

Nowhere did he say that the percentages should be equal. What he said is that the retirement accounts were not following the market because they had strategically placed holes in them.

JohnPalko

What I'm guessing is that he's intimating marginally unethical practices that are relatively common among stock brokers. The first is 'churning' where brokers in funds keep the stocks under their care in motion constantly so they can reap the rewards of the commisions on the transfers. The other is stock funds charging administrative fees that are larger than the actual returns their investors see to underwrite their inflated salaries. eg their salaries are inflated if with all thier 'professional acumen' they can't beat the increase in value of the S&P index or Dow Jones average by enough of a margin that their investors are still making more than the general increase in the market.. because they are either picking bad stocks or other shenanigans.

REP
Updated:

@Ferrum1


but that's not at all how the stock market or retirement funds work.

Unless I missed something in how he worded it..... which could very well be.


I think you are missing several things.

1. When writing fiction, Authors often base the story on reality, but they give reality a twist to fit the plot of the story. Therefore don't judge the story content according to what you know of reality.

2. If you haven't read his Service Society, do so. In the story, Lazlo uses satire to attack many of the real world traits of Big Business that many of us don't think of. He also adds his views on a number of our current cultural traits in regard to our use of technology. In this story, I see a similar approach, but not as satirical as Service Society.

You misread what he wrote, you said,

stock market can be up 12%, but his retirement fund is only up 2%.


What he actually said was:

Why was the stock market rising by 12%, yet retirement accounts invested in the stock market were only rising at 2%? Where was that missing 10%? How was it that certain financial institutions were earning 24% returns on stock investments? Wasn't it odd that it was the financial institutions handling poor performing retirement funds who were earning significant returns on its investments?


Peter was looking a retirement accounts in general, not his personal account. Since Financial Institutions as a group make up a large portion of the investment monies, as a group they should follow the market closely. Note that he said the financial institutions were making 24% on their investments and the same institutions were managing the poor performing retirement funds that were making 2%. To me that suggest the institutions are manipulating their records to transfer the retirees' profits into their pockets.

Replies:   StarFleet Carl
StarFleet Carl

@REP

To me that suggest the institutions are manipulating their records to transfer the retirees' profits into their pockets.


What you said. And also the minor detail he made the mistake that so many people make - he was simply letting someone else manage his retirement fund.

My 401K plan is just that - MY plan. I don't just let it sit and let the bank that handles it do things. I check out what funds it has available, I pay attention to market trends on the industries that those funds invest in, and I change things as I see fit to do so.

I have a family member who IS a financial counselor, and he says the problem with looking at past performance is simple - you're driving backwards using your mirrors. You can only see where you've been, not where you're actually going. So of course there are risks involved with these things. Thing is, the older you are, the less risk you should be taking.

Someone who is in their mid-70's and living off their investments SHOULD be getting a low rate of return because while the market in general may be increasing at double digit rates, their own funds should not be at risk. The funds that can provide high returns are also the ones that can LOSE high amounts quickly as well. That's why the stock market truly is legalized gambling - it's just one system that you can make money on whether the market goes up OR if it goes down. Choose things correctly and you can make a fortune. Choose wrong and you're flat broke.

Oh, and just in the for what it's worth department, my own investments are fairly aggressive. It appears that as of today, the Dow is up 8.21% for the year, the S&P 500 is up about 9% since the start of the year. My own personal rate of return is 12%.

Replies:   REP  sejintenej
REP
Updated:

@StarFleet Carl


he made the mistake that so many people make - he was simply letting someone else manage his retirement fund.


One of the points I made to Ferrum1 was Peter wasn't looking at his personal retirement investments. He was examining retirement investments as a whole.

I know what you mean about aggressive investments. When my brother-in-law was in his late-50s, he handled his stock market investments personally. He used to rush home from work and immediately check the status of his portfolio; a high stress environment. I suspect he was putting a large portion of their retirement money into high risk investments. A very risky thing to do in my opinion; especially when you don't have the research abilities of the large investment management firms.

Not_a_ID

@Dominions Son

No, it's more a matter of birth control and voluntary reductions in fertility.

Globally, there are inverse relationships between wealth and fertility rates and between education and fertility rates.

Wealthy people tend to have fewer kids and more educated people tend to have fewer kids.


Actually, it's more complicated than that. Family size seems to correlate with urbanization and education at this point.

If you(generically speaking) are educated, and live in an highly urbanized area, you're likely to only have one child, or two at the most. Because children are expensive, and living in an urban area is expensive to start with. (And educated people correlate those facts and act accordingly)

However, there is a breakdown that starts as the income(/education) increases. Where there is a weird dichotomy going on. The tendency in the highest income brackets tends to go one of two ways. Either the number of children drops to 0("no time for children"), or the family size goes up above the average of 2 per family. Three, four or more becomes common once again, as while children are expensive, they have the means to afford it. Of course, there is a large helping of the obligatory "single heir" family groupings as well, but in the aggregate, they're more an exception than the rule, even if there are a lot of them. But between the "lone heir" and the "no kids" group, you end up with the stats coming up with an average of "high income(/education) families are small."

It is the (better) educated middle and lower income groups that see family sizes dropping to near/below replacement level, both on average and in reality.

The only other exceptions are the (very) poorly educated, and often deeply impoverished(no education) who trend towards large families, although those families also tend to still be largely rural in nature. If they move into an urban area, the parents might continue popping out kids, but chances are their kids won't if they remain in the city.

Of course, there are some certain religious demographic groups that also seem to be marginal outliers in all of this. As I know the Mormons in particular, among some others, help contribute a counter-balance on the better educated/higher income + larger family side of things. Catholics also seem to be holding out to some degree in the US but that may a statistical anomaly largely due to the large number of Catholic immigrants from Central and South America.

But yeah, demographic expectations at this point is we hit "peak population" sometime around the middle of this century, after which we go into population decline unless something radically changes the game. As I doubt even a significant medical breakthrough resulting in a dramatic increase in life expectancy would do more than flatten the curve on the down slope(and slightly delay the peak).

IF we ever reach the point of extensive space colonization, there is probably going to need to be some deliberate social engineering that happens in order to get the population to grow again. If they even bother to pursue it at all.

At this point I wouldn't be surprised if a small comparative "handful" of people emigrated off planet, and make extensive use of robotics and automation to see to their needs and fulfill any "trading opportunities" that arise with Earth.

While the majority of the declining population remains on Earth and contents itself with a gradual decline into oblivion(or alternately: "a more sustainable population"), at least for a number of generations. Anyone not content with the "decline" option will likely be trying to find their way off of Earth.

But that's still going to leave the people in space(or on other planets) with "a problem" they'll likewise need to contend with: People not having enough kids to grow the population. Unless the "economics of automation" allows for some other social changes as well. (Such as those wealthier families of today with lots of kids)

Of course, I guess automation is part of "the singularity" (point beyond which nothing can reasonably be predicted or known) on this, as a sufficiently automated/advanced and egalitarian(essentially socialistic) society would virtually eliminate the "children are expensive problem" for all social groups.

If automation/AI has likewise become sufficiently advanced that most people have no meaningful work to devote their time to. That leaves the raising and rearing of the next generation of humans as the only thing for then to do, but only if they're your kids because otherwise you could just have an AI/Robot raise them.

Not_a_ID

@Michael Loucks

Northern Illinois has a huge radon issue. See Radon in Illinois. Many, many houses here have radon abatement systems, sealed sump pumps, and radon alarms.

It's just one more way nature is trying to kill us. :-)


And to think RADON as a radiation exposure issue only became known because guy working at a Nuclear Power plant kept setting off radiation alarms at work, they ultimately had him take a dosimeter home with him in order to figure out where he was getting exposed to all that radiation.

It also probably wasn't much of an issue prior to the 1970's anyway because Energy Efficiency "wasn't a thing" up until then, so most homes weren't sealed very well--so the radon could get out as the "house breathed." But as soon as they started sealing homes up tight in order to conserve energy...

Replies:   StarFleet Carl
Not_a_ID
Updated:

@Dominions Son


Sea level rise of more than one meter in a century is not realistic.

Cities can and have moved on century time scales.


Which isn't to mention engineering options. Which runs anywhere from building dikes and going the Netherland's route, or simply putting the structure on jacks and either relocating, or raising the ground-level of the location the structure is at. Given the time and inclination to do so, even very large buildings can be moved. It's just a question of how much someone is willing to pay to make it happen.

In theory, yes, that even includes the Empire State Building. Although that would be one hell of an undertaking. In a more practical respect, forget which major city it was, but they actually did pick up and relocate their version of "Grand Central Station" to a more desirable location.

Which isn't to mention that at least in regards to skyscrapers in general, it's probably a false assumption to believe they'd be abandoned in mass. Especially the larger ones. Given sufficient time to prepare, I'd put very good odds on an adaptation strategy being pursued with utilities and other vital services either "hardened" to continue operating where they are currently, even after the building is partially submerged, or relocated to such a location as to not be flooded out. Likewise, situational calls would be made on a floor by floor basis as to whether it is sealed/hardened against being submerged, or abandoned.

Even if we saw a 200 meter rise in sea level, if it is a gradual progressive flooding even that people adequately prepared for, I'd fully expect many of the skyscrapers in Manhattan to still have legal occupants continuing to do business in them. With or without the use of dikes to prevent the island from flooding.

Now the type of business being conducted may be another matter. Those activities may have shifted inland.

I mean seriously, do you think that a company is going to abandon a perfectly good five hundred million dollar building when they can form a consortium with 20 of their (near) neighbors, spend say, fifty million dollars each, and have continued use of the building even after the surrounding area floods?

Not happening. The moment the real estate developers start to get worried about any kind of "significant increase" in sea level, there is going to be billions of dollars worth of R&D money that is going to suddenly be found from all over the world to help save their precious coastal/lowland skyscrapers.

Replies:   sejintenej
Not_a_ID

@Ernest Bywater

While you think about and discuss a possible rising sea level, you need to consider the way the sea level has lowered over the centuries. Look at Harlech castle in Wales:


Even as a skeptic on the AGW aspect of climate change, I have to say that castle is a poor example for one reason. Look at the castle on Google Maps, go to satellite view, and look 1 mile to the north. There is a river delta there.

While ocean water levels may have dropped since the castle was constructed, what you're probably seeing in regards to that castle specifically is likely the result of centuries worth of sedimentation, both from the river and from the ocean itself. As the Dutch can attest to, under the right conditions, the ocean can be used help build up a land mass rather than erode it away. They've used that technique for centuries in order to reclaim land.

Replies:   Ernest Bywater
Not_a_ID

@Dominions Son

There has been no increase in the frequency or severity of hurricanes, tornadoes or thunder storms.

Such destructive weather events get their power not from heat, but from temperature gradients.


Actually, the modeling and science on this is quite clear, there is a man-made contribution to the severity of tornados and thunder storms, but the influence from global warming in pretty minimal. The single biggest contributor to the increased power is land use change resulting in significantly higher amounts of ambient humidity than would have been present otherwise. Heat without water is just heat. Heat with water means potential cloud formation, more water means more clouds being formed, enough cloud formation activity in a short enough time frame, and you end up with a severe thunderstorm which under the right conditions(temperature gradient present) then translates into potentially powerful tornados.

Of course, this also ignores the matter that water vapor itself is agreed to be a far more potent greenhouse gas than even CO2 is, but because it's a "short duration atmospheric pollutant" it isn't being targeted for action, as it usually returns to earth within days of being lofted into the air, rather than years/decades.

In many respects, a person in Iowa for example wouldn't be far off the mark to blame the dozens upon dozens of square miles of corn being grown miles "upwind" from him for the tornado that wiped out his house.

Replies:   Dominions Son
Dominions Son

@Not_a_ID

Actually, the modeling and science on this is quite clear, there is a man-made contribution to the severity of tornados and thunder storms


You are wrong.

Actual observational data shows no increase in the severity of tornadoes. The increase in tornado numbers is all in the weakest categories, F1 and F2. The people who are responsible for gathering this data attribute the entire increase in tornado counts to improved detection.

Replies:   Not_a_ID
Not_a_ID

@REP

Probably the result of all that coal the Paris Accord is trying to keep from being burnt.


In the case of greenland? Probably from all the coal the US (and Canada to a lesser degree) burned in the 1970's and previous, before we had a certain river catch fire and burn for days. The resulted clean air/clean water act reduced the emissions of particulate matter pollutants in the US to nearly nothing.

Ironically enough, it also is theorized that much of that particulate matter pollution was probably helping off-set some of the "warming effect" we should have already experienced up until that point. Which is part of how temps started going up "at a pronounced rate" after the 1970's.

Problem is all of that particulate matter is already part of our snowcap, in many places, it will eventually be buried for the most part, and that should be the end of it... Except along the periphery of those glaciers, where the stuff gets exposed once again.

Of course, things like a certain Antarctic ice-shelf having a volcanic "hot spot" turn up underneath it doesn't help things either....

Replies:   Dominions Son
Dominions Son

@Not_a_ID

Probably from all the coal the US (and Canada to a lesser degree) burned in the 1970's and previous


Or all the coal China is burning now, without any pollution controls.

Replies:   Not_a_ID
Not_a_ID

@Dominions Son

Actual observational data shows no increase in the severity of tornadoes. The increase in tornado numbers is all in the weakest categories, F1 and F2. The people who are responsible for gathering this data attribute the entire increase in tornado counts to improved detection.


Operative part here: In the frequency of tornadoes. Also that particular dataset is a bit spotty for obvious reasons. (Ability to detect, lack of records/witnesses to past events/etc) To get a tornado you need a specific set of environmental conditions to happen that would have little to nothing to do with regional/land use change. As you need a large front of (high) cold air (which "wants to sink") moving over an area of (low) hot (moist) air rising from the surface. Which then creates the impetus for rotation, and sets in motion everything needed to generate a tornado.

Thunderstorms, however, are another matter. And the weather modeling on this is very clear, if you run those weather scenarios through a regional climate model(rather than the global ones) with native vegetation, no irrigation, etc("in its natural state") you often end end up with light to moderate rain showers, if anything. But run it through with the current composition of the land uses currently be undertaken, and you end up with severe thunderstorms primed for a front as described previously to roll through and let a tornado happen.

Replies:   Dominions Son
Not_a_ID

@Dominions Son

Or all the coal China is burning now, without any pollution controls.


Doubtful asia's "brown cloud" is making any kind of significant contribution to the snowfall in Greenland. Now snowpacks in much of the US, Canada, and the Artic ice sheet....

Dominions Son

@Not_a_ID

Also that particular dataset is a bit spotty for obvious reasons.


It's spotty in the old data because many weak tornadoes went undetected unless they hit human habitations.

It is not at all spotty in recent decades very few of even the weakest storms have gone undetected since the development of Doppler radar. Now, it's so good, they can even spot tornadoes that never develop a visible funnel cloud.

Replies:   Not_a_ID
Not_a_ID
Updated:

@Dominions Son


It is not at all spotty in recent decades very few of even the weakest storms have gone undetected since the development of Doppler radar. Now, it's so good, they can even spot tornadoes that never develop a visible funnel cloud.


Thing is, how long have we been irrigating crops and farming in general across the "Midwestern" states? Heck, they've been farming and irrigating most of the Great Plains since the end of the 19th century. So you're comparing against what exactly? Data about tornado activity in Nebraska during the 1830's?
I wasn't aware that the native Americans were keeping detailed meteorological records back then.

Not_a_ID

But to bring AGW to the side that's applicable to somewhere Lazlo might go with it:

Kyoto and Paris are agreements that any Corporate Oligarch, staunch Socialist, or devoted Communist should love. That all three of them could agree on that is something that should be a bit concerning for everybody else who isn't in one of those three camps.

It puts more power in the hand of a government of agency, which the oligarch can "influence" to benefit themselves and harm their competition.

It establishes frameworks under which huge wealth transfers are both directly and indirectly triggered moving that wealth away from "the 1st world," and towards "the developing nations"(which is most of the planet--including China by most definitions), which makes the socialists and communists alike happy as it also sets precedents they might be able to use later.

But back to the Oligarch's in the 1st World. A Nation that just committed itself to a cap, or even better a net reduction in emissions, places that corporate oligarch in a nice position. At best he can ask for "financial assistance" to make his plant more efficient, while in the mean time his worst case is he's also effectively blocked any new direct competition springing up on his own "home front" because they won't be able to build a plant, because that would increase emissions, not reduce them. Of course, he might later be compelled to reduce his emissions without assistance, but not having to worry about new domestic competition makes that worthwhile.

Of course, their erstwhile competitor could undertake extreme(not financially viable) measures to offset such emissions, but those measures would be likely to render them non-competitive.

The Oligarch also isn't blocked from expanding his business at all, as the developing nations have still been allowed to increase their own emissions, so it just means he "offshores" any new production capability he might need. In addition to not being held to the same higher (environmental) standards required at home, he gets to tap into a cheaper labor market as well.

In the mean time, the Socialists and Communists alike back in the 1st world nations can agitate away and complain about the environmental catastrophe unfolding around us, and point to "the injustice" of the "Evil Corporate Oligarch" deciding to export jobs to some foreign nation.

All while silently cheering that a developing nation just grabbed another rung in the climb towards full industrialization. As well as opening up a new front for the fight for "worker's rights" in that soon to be built (overseas) plant that will be spewing far more pollution into the environment than ever would have been accepted here, but that's ok, it's for a greater good. It gives them another cause to fight for in their "fight against the oligarchs."

Too bad nobody gave most of those true believers the memo that they're basically working for the Corporate Oligarchs at this point, only with a few degrees of separation in place to maintain the illusion.

Replies:   Jim S
Ernest Bywater

@Not_a_ID

While ocean water levels may have dropped since the castle was constructed, what you're probably seeing in regards to that castle specifically is likely the result of centuries worth of sedimentation,


sedimentation may move the coastline back, it doesn't drop the water level a dozen or more metres. The spot on the castle wall that used to be at water level and known as the 'Water Gate' is many metres up the hill. That's what I was basing my observations about the castle on. Thus it's a good example.

sandpiper

The castle is located in an area that was glaciated in the last ice age, and the crust of the earth is rebounding from the weight of the ice. This is known as "crustal rebound" and has been verified in many areas.

Jim S
Updated:

@Not_a_ID

This is one helluva summation. But take it a step farther to grasp the full implications.

The idea is to hobble the productivity of the US in order to let the Third World to catch up. This is already happening to a certain extent with the policy of globalization. Whatever the motivation, it doesn't matter. Whether its because the US is considered evil (and therefore needs to apologize to the rest of the world for said evil), or because Internationalists want to further line their pockets, or because Russia wants to take us down, or because we need to transfer some of our wealth to poor people. I've heard and read these as well as other arguments, all of them plausible.

Frankly, it doesn't matter. My belief is that it comes down to the oldest criminal manifesto, i.e you've got it; I want it; GIMME. I've faced that from the ghetto rat putting a knife in my face boost my wallet when I was a kid, to another of that breed trying to pull the USA into the Paris Accord, the largest proposed international transfer of wealth in history. Karl Marx at his best.

The only problem is that its your, and my, wealth. Now if you want to contribute yours, fine. Do so. However, I don't. And as far as transferring the jobs to the Third World in order for them to catch us? My kids need jobs too. I've watched about 900,000 manufacturing jobs disappear from my state over the past 30 years. I'm not about to sign on to outsourcing the rest of them.

This is also where I think Lazlo is coming from with this story. And why I'm enjoying it so much thus far. He is one helluva allegorical writer.

StarFleet Carl

@Not_a_ID

It also probably wasn't much of an issue prior to the 1970's anyway because Energy Efficiency "wasn't a thing" up until then, so most homes weren't sealed very well--so the radon could get out as the "house breathed." But as soon as they started sealing homes up tight in order to conserve energy...


Actually, it was seen as an issue, but not in homes prior to the '70's. It was an issue for deep shaft miners, especiallly coal and/or gold.

Some of the highest levels I ever saw in homes weren't in well sealed houses - they were in those old houses built turn of the century, some of which still had dirt basements. Couple houses I had to actually pour about an inch of concrete over the dirt just to seal it. A lot of homes on crawl spaces I ended up putting a LOT of plastic down in the crawl area. The thing is, you have to seal that plastic around everything, so I used a LOT of adhesive caulk and 3M Type 90 spray.

But back in those days, so many people smoked, and the general life expectancy wasn't what it is today. So if you ended up with lung cancer, no one had a clue about it being the actual air in your home causing it. They just figured crap happens and moved on.

I did think one thing was sort of amusing, in a morbid way. I had to go into a house just south of the Wabash River, a little downstream from West Lafayette - so basically an area that the glaciers had scraped flat at one time. The home inspector had done a test and the house tested out at about 300 pCi/L. They wanted a retest since he'd used the canister method, while I used Continuous Radon Monitors (a bit more accurate, and which would give you an hour by hour reading).

Yeah, it wasn't 300 pCi/L. It averaged during the testing period at 584 pCi/L. The lady selling the house said they'd lived there for 20 years and had no issues ... and in the same breath, told me she was suffering from a weird and rare blood disease that they had no idea how she'd gotten it. That was actually the only house that when I was doing the work in the home that I made sure and wore a respirator the whole time - and had opened all the doors, running fans and just bringing in as much outside air as I could.

Of course, like most houses that had high radon levels, once I put the system in, sealed all the cracks in the basement, and got the suction fan running (which creates a low pressure area UNDER the basement slab) and then vented above the roofline, radon level in the house was less than 1 pCi/L during post mitigation testing.

TL/DR -I know too much about this stuff... :)

graybyrd

@StarFleet Carl

That the Federal Government has taken all of these powers over the years through orders and simple paperwork doesn't make it Constitutional - and it sounds like Peter is setting things up for the States to do a bit of a bitch slap on the Feds.


And of course everyone over the age of ten understands that the U.S. Constitution isn't worth the roll of toilet paper that it's currently printed on, as far as Federal interpretations and practice are concerned... unless, of course, a point of Constitutional law works to federal advantage.

The other point... virtually no US resident has the personal means to defend their so-called Constitutional rights. The few Constitutional abuse cases that arise are, without exception, initiated and funded by organized entities that have such actions as their primary mission.

Lazlo's story is a fascinating read... but it's a fairy tale, pure and simple.

Replies:   joyR  StarFleet Carl
joyR

@graybyrd

Lazlo's story is a fascinating read... but it's a fairy tale, pure and simple.


Oh please!!!

If you are going to make this kind of statement at least add a 'spoiler warning' at the start of your post.

StarFleet Carl

@graybyrd

The other point... virtually no US resident has the personal means to defend their so-called Constitutional rights.


I have a couple thousand of those personal means right now, mostly in 5.56 and 9 mm. But I do get the point you're trying to make - and again, while at the individual level you're probably correct, you're missing one minor detail, which is also the one Lazlo is making here, and is one that right now has liberal media sources in this country today screaming that it's a bad idea.

What Lazlo is describing in his story is something that has slowed lately in real life, but was chugging along merrily under Obama. An Article V Convention of States. It takes 34 states to agree, and if they do so, the Federal Government is powerless to do anything about it without resorting to full military force.

There are 32 states currently controlled by Republicans, 12 by Democrats, and 6 with split legislatures. 28 states have called for an Article V Convention already. It takes 34.

You call it a fairy tale. I call it the reason Donald Trump won the election. (And no, in the primary, I did NOT vote for him. My wife voted for Rubio, I voted for Cruz.) But I'm also realist enough to note what has been happening for several years in this country - the heartland is tired of being dictated to by the coast. It's a true grass roots movement - the takeover of the Republican Party starting at the local level.

Go do some research and see how MANY local and state offices were lost by Democrats over the last few years. Heck, look at what happened in Georgia yesterday. You can't lose more than 1,000 state and local offices and not have it affect you nationally. Fairy tale? Other than it being generic citizens and not a party, I call it reality.

Replies:   Jim S  Not_a_ID  REP
Jim S

@StarFleet Carl

What Lazlo is describing in his story is something that has slowed lately in real life, but was chugging along merrily under Obama. An Article V Convention of States. It takes 34 states to agree, and if they do so, the Federal Government is powerless to do anything about it without resorting to full military force.


You make a good point. But consider what happens if SCOTUS rules against it if/when it occurs? How do you spell "Constitutional Crisis"? Or "Civil War"? I say this because legal pushback against the 28 states has already started.

I had a couple of email exchanges with Convention of States, one of the organizations involved. And suggested a possible amendment, i.e. individual state ratification of Supreme Court justices, two-thirds majority required. And conversed with the Republican Party in my state. You'd be surprised at the pushback there.

I hope it happens. But I'm not holding my breath.

Replies:   StarFleet Carl
Not_a_ID
Updated:

@StarFleet Carl


Go do some research and see how MANY local and state offices were lost by Democrats over the last few years. Heck, look at what happened in Georgia yesterday. You can't lose more than 1,000 state and local offices and not have it affect you nationally. Fairy tale? Other than it being generic citizens and not a party, I call it reality.


They(Dems) also lost the special election in South(IIRC) Carolina it looks like. So even with all the "anti-Trump energy" and causing the most expensive congressional races in history, they're still failing to flip Congressional districts in their favor.

Of course, taking a district that voted 70-some percent for the incumbent Republican for that seat last November. Having the margin split 52/48 this time around is undoubtedly alarming a number of Republican political types. The recent shooting in Alexandria probably gave the Republicans a small bump in both turnout and support as well.

But generally speaking, the Dems are still failing to realize that being anti-Trump gets them nowhere with conservative voters. They don't like him either.

The Democrat problem is they(conservatives/many moderates) view "unchecked Democrat power" to be a bigger threat to them than they view Donald Trump to be. Until they close that gap, they're getting nowhere.

But as the Dem strategy seems to be to double down on the crazy, and reaffirm why people think they're dangerous. That's not going anywhere good.

REP
Updated:

@StarFleet Carl


An Article V Convention of States.


I came across an interesting fact about amending the US Constitution. There were 12 Articles of Amendment approved by Congress in 1789 and submitted to the States for Ratification. 10 of the articles were ratified by 1791 and became the first ten Amendments to the Constitution. The other 2 articles:

1. Technically, the 1st Article is still pending ratification. There was no time limit set for ratification, so it only needs 27 more states to ratify it and it will become the next Amendment to the Constitution.

2. The 2nd Article was ratified on May 5, 1992 and is now the 27th Amendment.

https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/United_States_Bill_of_Rights

Edit to add: I wonder if changing the Constitution is where LZ's story is headed.

Dominions Son

@REP

Technically, the 1st Article is still pending ratification. There was no time limit set for ratification, so it only needs 27 more states to ratify it and it will become the next Amendment to the Constitution.


Not quite. This issue was addressed by SCOTUS with the 27th amendment. Even if there is no time limit set for ratification, all of the ratifications have to be contemporaneous.

This forced the group that got the 27th amendment ratified to go back and get a number of states that ratified it to begin with to re-ratify it.

Also, the remaining article from the original bill of rights would not be particularly useful today.

Had it passed, based on 2016 population numbers we would need 64,843 representatives today.

If you think the current House of Representatives is dysfunctional with 435 members, What do you think would happen if it suddenly jumped to 64,843?

Replies:   REP
StarFleet Carl

@REP

I wonder if changing the Constitution is where LZ's story is headed.


Well, his newest chapter is where Peter finally mentions the title of the story - the Reset Manifesto - and while it's not specific, you're getting a bit of context since he expects both the Professor and the writer to have to go into hiding for at least a year.

StarFleet Carl

@Jim S

But consider what happens if SCOTUS rules against it if/when it occurs? How do you spell "Constitutional Crisis"? Or "Civil War"? I say this because legal pushback against the 28 states has already started.


Oh, if things this most recent national election cycle had gone the other way, I was fully expecting to see us in ACW2 before the end of the first term. Hell, it may STILL end up happening.

What those that are giving pushback to the 28 states don't get is that the electoral college was set up for exactly the scenario that just happened in this country. Which is what Lazlo described in this chapter - the people vote for the ELECTORS, not the candidate. He's taking it to the next level - where the electors are people who are willing to vote for the best qualified person, regardless of party affiliation.

Replies:   REP
REP

@Dominions Son

Also, the remaining article from the original bill of rights would not be particularly useful today.


Oh, I agree fully. It would need to be rewritten for today's world and re-ratified. I just thought it was interesting that the article was still pending after 200 years.

REP

@StarFleet Carl

the people vote for the ELECTORS, not the candidate.


That would be an interesting premise. You could have electors who stand for a specific candidate and electors who are independent. In the second case, the elector would have to define what he believes in and the voters would vote for him if they concur with what he believes. But then the problem would be how would he select the candidate he wants to vote for. As LZ says, people are out to buy the votes of those independent electors.

Replies:   Dominions Son
LonelyDad

From the context, I am going to assume that ACW2 means American Civil War II. If so, you might be right. And unless some things get fixed, the next time the Dems (aka Liberals) get someone in the White House it could still happen. Then we will really see how the 'right to bear arms' holds up.

Replies:   REP  Not_a_ID  Wheezer
REP

@LonelyDad

When I was in my 20's, I found this plastic statue. It was a Donkey looking back over its shoulder at an Elephant that had its hips pressed to the Donkey's ass. The caption read, "Why not, we do it to the Public."

Dominions Son

@REP

That would be an interesting premise.


It's actually the way US presidential elections used to work.

Though in fact the Constitution does not require electors to be elected at all, it leaves the selection of electors up to the states.

Early on it would have been possible for a state to decide to have the state legislature select the electors in the same manner than US Senators were originally appointed by state legislatures.

However, given the 14th amendment and the VRA, it would likely be impossible for any state to switch how it selects electors away from an election now.

Not_a_ID
Updated:

@LonelyDad


From the context, I am going to assume that ACW2 means American Civil War II. If so, you might be right. And unless some things get fixed, the next time the Dems (aka Liberals) get someone in the White House it could still happen. Then we will really see how the 'right to bear arms' holds up.


That depends on a number of factors. It is very possible for the Dems to get another person into the White House and not trigger an ACW. It just happens that at present they're seeming unlikely to field such a candidate.

The more pressing concern is that "the snowflakes" don't go apeshit crazy in 2018 when/if they fail to obtain any meaningful kind of "mandate" from the Congressional races.

Of course, "history may not repeat itself but it can ryhme." So a bunch of marginally Democrat-aligned individuals kicking off a bloody civil war in response to a specific Republican being President of the United States, and elections not going in their favor has a great deal of symmetry.

sejintenej

@StarFleet Carl

My 401K plan is just that - MY plan. I don't just let it sit and let the bank that handles it do things. I check out what funds it has available, I pay attention to market trends on the industries that those funds invest in, and I change things as I see fit to do so.

Same here

I have a family member who IS a financial counselor, and he says the problem with looking at past performance is simple - you're driving backwards using your mirrors. You can only see where you've been, not where you're actually going. So of course there are risks involved with these things.

Not quite so. If you look at the history of a fund or share and at the people running it you can decide if they are competent, incompetent or outstanding.
However, a fund manager who is good on a rising market can (and often is) a failure on a falling market - and vice versa. Very few are good both ways.

Thing is, the older you are, the less risk you should be taking.


Marginal. Yes, keep the bulk in quality safe stocks but I have a separate "gambling" fund. This is used for quick occasional profits - for example there are sites giving company news which I look at two hours before the market opens and news there has led to very big very quick profits (but occasional small losses)

That said, if you are not already experienced create a mock fund and run it for a year. I shouldn't advertise but Peter Lynch "Beating the Street" Chapter One, "The Miracle of St Agnes" is a worthwhile start. (I have no connection with author or publisher)

Wheezer

@LonelyDad

From the context, I am going to assume that ACW2 means American Civil War II. If so, you might be right. And unless some things get fixed, the next time the Dems (aka Liberals) get someone in the White House it could still happen. Then we will really see how the 'right to bear arms' holds up.


You might be surprised at how many of us Liberal Dems own guns - even assault rifles. We're not anti-2nd amendment. We're against crazy fucks and criminals having guns. Since so many of the crazy fucks are also conservative religious fuckwits, it's easy to understand where the assumption comes from.

Replies:   Jim S
Jim S
Updated:

@Wheezer


You might be surprised at how many of us Liberal Dems own guns - even assault rifles. We're not anti-2nd amendment. We're against crazy fucks and criminals having guns. Since so many of the crazy fucks are also conservative religious fuckwits, it's easy to understand where the assumption comes from.


Uh, proof? It seems the "crazy fucks" that I read of doing the shooting/killing are radical islamists, crazed liberals (but I repeat myself), or stupid kids absent strong parental control. Throw in ghetto gangs. But then whose policies created those? Religious conservatives?

Wheezer, I'm allowing that you're not just trolling here. And that you really hold these views. And I'm agnostic.

But, really, "conservative religious fuckwits"?

Replies:   Wheezer
richardshagrin

"When it is illegal to have guns, only criminals will have guns." Sounds like Boolean Algebra or basic logic. Until you shoot someone or believably threaten to do so, you need to have a gun, on your own premises, to protect yourself from all those criminals who "shouldn't" have one. Heinlein (RAH, RAH, Robert A.) postulated a well armed populace would be a polite society. If dueling were legal, people would think twice about calling other people "conservative religious fuckwits".

Replies:   Wheezer
Wheezer
Updated:

@Jim S

If the shooter is a Muslim, the media says he's an Islamic terrorist.

If the shooter is a white Christian, the media describes him as a mentally ill lone wolf.

To me, as an Atheist, both are mentally ill religious fuckwits. IMHO, anyone who has fell for the god myth of ANY religion is a candidate for the fuckwit label. Of course, there are exceptions. Whether or not it applies to you, or any other individual or not really depends on you. Sorry, not trolling, but giving an honest opinion. BTW, the overwhelming majority of mass shootings in the US have been by white Christian males.

Nowhere in my first post do I advocate making guns illegal. That would make me a hypocrite since I have two within arms reach and others in the house.

Crazed liberals? I can only think of one - the guy who shot up the Repub. baseball practice recently.

Replies:   StarFleet Carl  Not_a_ID
Wheezer

@richardshagrin

If dueling were legal, people would think twice about calling other people "conservative religious fuckwits".


Who did I name?

Replies:   REP
REP

@Wheezer

Who did I name?


No one, but there are a lot of conservative religious fuckwits out there who would take you comment as a personal insult and challenge you to a duel. :)

Replies:   Wheezer
REP
Updated:

Yesterday, LZ made a blog post about Reset Manifesto. If you missed it, he notified us readers that due to a mistake in his understanding of the electoral process, the storyline is flawed.

http://storiesonline.net/ablog/Lazlo_Zalezac

He didn't say what action he intended to take.

Replies:   StarFleet Carl
Wheezer

@REP


No one, but there are a lot of conservative religious fuckwits out there who would take you comment as a personal insult and challenge you to a duel. :)


Well, based on several years of my online postings on social media, I should have been in several duels already. ;)

Replies:   Lumpy
Lumpy

@Wheezer

Would the internet version of duels be Memes at 20 Paces?

Replies:   REP
REP

@Lumpy

Would the internet version of duels be Memes at 20 Paces?


Judging by social media it's who can out-insult the other guy.

Replies:   Not_a_ID
StarFleet Carl

@Wheezer

If the shooter is a Muslim, the media says he's an Islamic terrorist.


Actually, that's what tends to be the problem. The media for the most part tries to AVOID saying that the Muslim shooter is an Islamic terrorist. Let's look at the incident from literally just a couple of days ago. Here's what CNN reported:

"A police officer was stabbed in the back and neck Wednesday at an airport in Flint, Michigan, and the suspect is in custody and being questioned, according to authorities.

The FBI said it believed the attack was an "isolated incident" and is investigating whether it was an act of terrorism.

"We are aware of reports that the attacker made statements immediately prior to or while attacking the officer, but it is too early to determine the nature of these alleged statements or whether or not this was an act of terrorism," the FBI said."


Wow, sounds like it could just be a random act of violence. Or as Breitbart reported it:

Officer stabbed in Michigan by man yelling "Allahu Akbar"


Wonder which one is more accurate, or at least makes it pretty simple.

Crazed liberals? I can only think of one - the guy who shot up the Repub. baseball practice recently.


Let me help you, then.
July, 2016 - Pittsburgh - Hillary supporter physically beats a Trump supporter just walking by.
San Jose - Trump supporters leaving a rally are attacked by Hillary supporters.

August, 2016 - Minneapolis - Trump supporters leaving a rally are assaulted by an angry mob that ended up beating an old man nearly to death. They also attacked the Trump motorcade.
Tennessee - A Trump supporter is beaten simply for being one.
New Jersey - Trump supporter beaten on the streets with a crowbar

September, 2016 - California, crowd chases and beats up a Trump supporter

October, 2016 - North Carolina, GOP office firebombed

November, 2016 - Maryland (twice), California, New York (twice), Texas, Florida, Connecticut - multiple locations, same story - Trump supporters attacked and beaten by crowds of Hillary supporters

December, 2016 - Illinois, Trump supporter beaten and dragged by a car

That's all just last year. Since January, there has been an escaltion where now more than half a dozen people have been beaten literally unconscious or had concussions, multiple incidents of vehicles being damaged, even riots with fires.

And it has (so far) culminated in the attempted assassination of Republican congressional leaders. Only one crazed liberal? Don't make me laugh.

StarFleet Carl

@REP

If you missed it, he notified us readers that due to a mistake in his understanding of the electoral process, the storyline is flawed.


I caught that while reading, but for story purposes, I'd just ignore it. All it would do is change his timetable a bit, I think. The actual premise behind the story itself is NOT flawed. Not by a long shot.

Replies:   REP
REP

@StarFleet Carl

The actual premise behind the story itself is NOT flawed.


My hope also. However, depending on what LZ wrote for the next chapter or so, it could have a big ripple effect through many chapters.

Not_a_ID

@Wheezer

BTW, the overwhelming majority of mass shootings in the US have been by white Christian males.


Should a family murder/suicide really be placed on such lists? Because they seem to end up on a lot of them.

While tragic in their own right, it isn't quite the same thing as someone turning up in a public place and going on a shooting spree.

And most of the "White christian male" "mass shootings" that turn up on certain mass shooting lists are "workplace violence" events which are their own special sub-category within mass-shootings.

Of course, school shooters could often technically qualify for that category too since it could be argued as a students "place of work."

But generally speaking, when most people talk "mass-shooting" they're not thinking workplace grievances or family murders(by a family member).

They're thinking of the guy going to a "public place" and opening fire on people they have little to no direct association with. Night clubs, parks, college campuses, movie theaters, etc.

For the "impersonal grievance" category of mass shootings, the "Christian White Male" is rather lacking.

Replies:   Ferrum1  richardshagrin
Not_a_ID

@REP

Judging by social media it's who can out-insult the other guy.


Who blocks who first?

Ferrum1

@Not_a_ID

Spot on the money.... and if you actually look into these "white christian males" they always go on about, rarely are they actually christians. Most of them that I have found are not religious at all - and not one was actually motivated by their religious beliefs to do what they did. The media simply assumes that if you're white you must be a christian and that religious belief is strong enough that you are a fundamentalist.

Compare that to the treatment of muslims actually living out their fundamentalist beliefs, killing people in accordance with their beliefs..... and it's amazing how the media whitewashes those particular details.

richardshagrin

@Not_a_ID

when most people talk "mass-shooting"

It might be a shooting in Massachusetts.

Or during a Roman Catholic service called a Mass.

sejintenej
Updated:

@Not_a_ID


The moment the real estate developers start to get worried about any kind of "significant increase" in sea level, there is going to be billions of dollars worth of R&D money that is going to suddenly be found from all over the world to help save their precious coastal/lowland skyscrapers.


There are many questions about how quickly and by how much the sea will rise.

The Thames has a barrier to prevent the sea flooding London and when it was designed they reckoned it would be raised once in a hundred years; now it is raised several times per year.

We used to build sea walls east of London but they have now realised that they will never keep the sea out so flooding of the salt marshes is now allowed; people either don't build there or they accept that they will be flooded at some time or other.

Imagine building a seventy metre wall from Nova Scotia to the source of the Rio Grande; who reckons that that is possible (and don't forget all the rivers and how to let rainfall get to the sea)?

Replies:   REP  Dominions Son  Jim S
REP
Updated:

@sejintenej


a seventy metre wall from Nova Scotia to the source of the Rio Grande


and the sea will just flow around the ends of the wall. Don't forget you have shipping ports where ocean freighters have to pull in to unload their cargos - gates to let them in and keep the ocean out will be a nightmare to build and operate.

Replies:   sejintenej
Dominions Son
Updated:

@sejintenej


There are many questions about how quickly and by how much the sea will rise.


It's more complicated that that. Land can rise or subside (sink) separate from changes in sea level.

Venice has a major problem, not with sea level rise, but with land subsidence.

New Orleans has a major problem with man made land subsidence. The French Quarter is the only part of New Orleans that was ever above sea level, and is the only part of the city that isn't sinking. New Orleans was build on sea level delta swamps. They dried out the land by pumping the water out of the swamps into canals, but that has resulted in the land sinking as the water table drops. The more it sinks the faster they have to pump water out to keep it dry. The faster they pump out the water, the faster the land sinks.

The bulk of New Orleans beyond the historic French Quarter never should have been built in the first place and ought to be abandoned now.

The Thames has a barrier to prevent the sea flooding London and when it was designed they reckoned it would be raised once in a hundred years; now it is raised several times per year.


That could be because sea level has risen, though measured sea level change since it was built is only a couple of feet. Or it could be because their reckoning was wrong in the first instance.


We used to build sea walls east of London but they have now realised that they will never keep the sea out so flooding of the salt marshes is now allowed


Those salt marshes exist in the first place because of historical ocean flooding.

Replies:   REP  sejintenej
REP

@Dominions Son

Or it could be because their reckoning was wrong in the first instance.


I agree. That also raises the question of do our current crop of experts know what they are talking about. Since they can't agree, it is obvious that many of them are wrong. But which ones?

Jim S
Updated:

@sejintenej


The Thames has a barrier to prevent the sea flooding London and when it was designed they reckoned it would be raised once in a hundred years; now it is raised several times per year.


Let me get this straight. The Brits designed a massive system of gates costing billions to construct so they could use it once every hundred years? Am I understanding this correctly? I'm talking about their original design per your statement, not how they're using it now.

Dominions Son

@Jim S

The Brits designed a massive system of gates costing billions to construct so they could use it once every hundred years?


No, what they told the suckers...er...citizens was that it would only need to be used once every hundred years.

Ernest Bywater

@Jim S

Let me get this straight. The Brits designed a massive system of gates costing billions to construct so they could use it once every hundred years?


Nope, the I remember media reports at the time were it was for storm surge mitigation. I went to the wikipedia page to check that. They do have a lot of info on it.

https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Thames_Barrier

sejintenej

@REP

sejintenej

a seventy metre wall from Nova Scotia to the source of the Rio Grande

REP replied:

and the sea will just flow around the ends of the wall. Don't forget you have shipping ports where ocean freighters have to pull in to unload their cargos - gates to let them in and keep the ocean out will be a nightmare to build and operate.

which simply goes to show that the whole idea is not feasible. We just have to learn to swim (but drowning will get rid of the population problem)

sejintenej

@Dominions Son

It's more complicated that that. Land can rise or subside (sink) separate from changes in sea level.

Venice has a major problem, not with sea level rise, but with land subsidence.

Britain has the problem also that the ice age pushed down and the UK is still repositioning itself. I don't remember which - Scotland is rising out of the sea and the south on England sinking (or vice versa)

New Orleans has a major problem with man made land subsidence. ............ They dried out the land by pumping the water out of the swamps into canals, but that has resulted in the land sinking as the water table drops.

We have that same problem in parts of England (The Fens to be precise). Contrarywise they have stopped taking water from artesian wells so the water table under London is rising causing problems to the Underground/Tube/Subway

garymrssn
Updated:

@REP

That also raises the question of do our current crop of experts know what they are talking about. Since they can't agree, it is obvious that many of them are wrong. But which ones?


The vast majority of people can't tell the difference. If a scientist publishes research that threatens the power of a very powerful person or group, that person or group can hire someone to publish research contradicting it. Then they make sure that the public sees and hears about the fraudulent research more often and louder than the legitimate research. The only people who can tell the difference in the research will be scientist in that field. The fraudsters then trot out paid "experts" from "related" fields to support their claims. The general public doesn't have the expertise to sort it out and end up getting snowed into believing the fraud. This was a tactic of the tobacco companies when research came out showing the dangers of smoking.

Ernest Bywater

@REP

That also raises the question of do our current crop of experts know what they are talking about. Since they can't agree, it is obvious that many of them are wrong. But which ones?


A lot of that comes from looking at too small a data sample or corrupted data. Some of the errors come from not fully understanding the fine details of the science they're looking at, and thus reaching wrong conclusions. In all cases it's hard to be sure who is right, and who isn't.

Replies:   REP
REP

@Ernest Bywater

A lot of that comes from looking at too small a data sample or corrupted data.


I think a lot of that comes from the expert having a theory and then manipulating the data to prove the theory.

Assemble enough data points to prove a theory and ignoring those that don't fit the theory seems to be the way many experts prove their theory is correct.

When such a theory is challenged the proposing expert claims the contradictory data points were false or corrupted for some reason or not applicable. Loosely translated - they didn't fit with the other data points so they were ignored.

Replies:   Ernest Bywater
Ernest Bywater

@REP

I think a lot of that comes from the expert having a theory and then manipulating the data to prove the theory.


Could be true, or it may even be they didn't look at all the available data.

Over twenty years ago I saw to different scientists discussing changes in Global Temperature. Both had a lot of data to support what they said. The first showed all the data from the many weather stations set up around the world during the previous 200 years, and they showed an rising temperature - and thus global warming started. The other scientist showed data collected from around the world by mariners and listed in their logs every few hours, that data went back a thousand years, and it showed many rises and drops in global temperature, along with a major drop shortly before the weather stations became so prolific.

In each case the scientists drew what seemed an accurate analysis from the data they had available, however, one was using a restricted set of data that gave a false answer. Sadly, those people have since refused to look at any other data - something that's common with some scientists.

Replies:   StarFleet Carl
StarFleet Carl

@Ernest Bywater

the many weather stations set up around the world during the previous 200 years


Add in that many of those weather stations, when they were set up, were in rural areas. Except now they're not. So if you have a monitor that was, when first set up, in an large, empty field that now is a paved parking lot with brick buildings nearby ... I think a rational person would be skeptical of the data that it produces.

http://www.surfacestations.org/odd_sites.htm

gmontgomery

@red61544

Considering the kerfuffle that brought about Wm. Jennings Bryan's "Cross of Gold" speech, I'm not all that sold on going totally off a fiat currency.

Replies:   StarFleet Carl
joecct

Anyone else recognize the story Rebecca is reading George?

It's the end of Ed Biggers.

StarFleet Carl

@gmontgomery

fiat currency


The problem with a fiat currency is simple. It's backed by the full faith and credit of the nation that issued it. Don't get me wrong, there's also an issue with a commodity currency as well. What people get lost in - and Lazlo points out in this chapter - is that money in and of itself is worthless. It has no intrinsic value. It is, however, used as the markers and counters in the game of economics that we all play.

And as Lazlo points out, if you can accumulate a lot of those markers, then you can purchase something tangible, that truly exists, and has value. And if things all collapse (say, a couple of EMP nukes, like envisioned in One Second After), a stack of paper money will be worthless. Gold is pretty, but you can't eat it.

The issue is whether the "precious gems, artwork, metals, and other items with an intrinsic value" will retain that intrinsic value in a societal collapse. They may be worth something AFTER the Reset, but their value is effectively nil DURING the Reset.

Dominions Son

@StarFleet Carl

Gold is pretty, but you can't eat it.


And you probably won't be able to spend it either if we've been pushed back to the late stone age/early iron age and a barter economy.

Paper money can at least be used as tinder to start a fire. :)

joyR

@StarFleet Carl

Gold is pretty, but you can't eat it.


But you CAN trade it, for food, clothes, medicine, tools, etc etc

Dominions Son

@joyR

But you CAN trade it, for food, clothes, medicine, tools, etc etc


If civilization has been wiped out completely, don't bet on being able to trade gold for anything.

Replies:   Michael Loucks
Michael Loucks

@Dominions Son

If civilization has been wiped out completely, don't bet on being able to trade gold for anything.


'Money' will very quickly develop because no individual has the capacity to produce/obtain all the better goods they require for successful trades. This is especially true for someone trading on their skills who may not need or want what you produce, but who can't practice their skill directly for the person who does have what they need/want.

The 'money' that developed could be just about anything that has permanence, is easy to store and transport, and which is generally recognized as 'money'.

awnlee jawking

@StarFleet Carl

Gold is pretty, but you can't eat it.


Actually you can - a number of celebrity chefs adorn their products with edible gold leaf in order to charge even for ridiculous prices for their food.

AJ

Replies:   Ernest Bywater
Ernest Bywater

@awnlee jawking

Actually you can - a number of celebrity chefs adorn their products with edible gold leaf in order to charge even for ridiculous prices for their food.


The fact the gold can transit the system in small quantities doesn't mean you want to eat it, because you get no nutrition out of it at all, and will eventual starve to death if gold was all you ate.

Replies:   awnlee jawking
StarFleet Carl

@joyR

But you CAN trade it, for food, clothes, medicine, tools, etc etc


Presuming that the OTHER party that has those things places a value upon it. If they don't, then you're SOL - and that's NOT Stories Online...

StarFleet Carl

@Michael Loucks

'Money' will very quickly develop because no individual has the capacity to produce/obtain all the better goods they require for successful trades.


Actually, I do agree with you. It's just figuring out what form that 'money' will take, as well as what commodity, if any, that money will be based upon.

Go read the classic 'Time Enough for Love' by Robert Heinlein, when he discusses starting a new settlements away from and apart from the fabric of civilization. Lazarus said he always based the currency upon the worth of a bushel of a common grain, when he was running the bank. In a mostly agrarian society, that would work - and after major disaster, whether natural or otherwise, I suspect that what remains will be a primarily agrarian society, with a strong salvage content.

Replies:   awnlee jawking
awnlee jawking

@Ernest Bywater

True. I can't understand people who buy the stuff to eat it.

https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Gold_leaf#Culinary_uses

AJ

awnlee jawking

@StarFleet Carl

Another candidate would be sugar. Allegedly its value has been very stable over the past century or so, taking inflation into account.

AJ

Dominions Son

@Michael Loucks

'Money' will very quickly develop because no individual has the capacity to produce/obtain all the better goods they require for successful trades.


It will develop eventually. How quickly it happens will depend on a lot of factors, the big one being the density of the surviving population.

If the surviving population is low enough and spread out enough, it could be a very long time before any significant trading is going on.

Replies:   Ernest Bywater
Ernest Bywater
Updated:

@Dominions Son


If the surviving population is low enough and spread out enough, it could be a very long time before any significant trading is going on.


That would depend on how you define trading. From day one people would be bartering, and that could continue for a very long time or it could quickly settle down into some sort of monetary value situation.
typo edit

Replies:   Dominions Son
Dominions Son

@Ernest Bywater

From day one people would be bartering,


Not necessarily if the population density of the survivors is low enough. If the next surviving family is several days walking away, there isn't going to be much trading going on.

Replies:   Ernest Bywater
Jim S
Updated:

I think the discussion here misses entirely the function of money. Let me point out the obvious. It is nothing more than a vehicle for enabling barter. You have hours of labor that you want to convert to shelter, food and clothes? Money required. You have hours of writing that you want to offer to a newspaper publisher for potential barter for whatever? Money required. You want to convert your Tesla stocks for gold? Money required. But in each of those cases, you're bartering hours of your time, or value of property already owned, for some other good or commodity. Unless you're one of those who acquire money for the sheer joy of wallowing in it like some Scrooge.

I think that once a population arrives at a critical density, some form of money is automatically enabled as direct barter becomes unwieldy and inefficient. How old are the oldest historical coins found thus far? Think there aren't any earlier forms of money? Highly unlikely. I figure money in one form or another is about 30,000 years old or so.

One of the true injustices of fiat money is the canard propagated by government that it has intrinsic value. Maybe it does at this particular second in time. But wait another year and watch around 2.5% of it disappear. Or worse (see hyperinflation). This is nothing more than government theft from individual citizens. I think that's what LZ was getting at in part with Chapter 28.

Replies:   Ernest Bywater
Ernest Bywater

@Dominions Son

Not necessarily if the population density of the survivors is low enough. If the next surviving family is several days walking away, there isn't going to be much trading going on.


Even within a single parental set family there's bartering going on today - even if it's just a case of 'Will you do the washing up today? And I'll do it tomorrow when it's your turn.' type of bartering. Increase the number of adults or near adult family members, and the level will increase.

Replies:   Dominions Son
Ernest Bywater

@Jim S

How old are the oldest historical coins found thus far? Think there aren't any earlier forms of money?


Coins, any type of coinage that wasn't metal or stone would cease to be after a thousand years or so. Some ancient records mention the society used wood coins, we know some sued stone coins. For thousands of years the Celtic culture used a milch cow as the monetary equivalent of value for assessing values for land compensation etc. Once a society starts to have any sort of specialisation, even as simple as group A hunts animals and group B hunts for vegetables, you need some sort of valuation method.

Replies:   Jim S
Jim S

@Ernest Bywater

even as simple as group A hunts animals and group B hunts for vegetables, you need some sort of valuation method.


Once again you make precise my generalizations. But it was precisely :) what I was getting at.

Dominions Son

@Ernest Bywater

Even within a single parental set family there's bartering going on today - even if it's just a case of 'Will you do the washing up today? And I'll do it tomorrow when it's your turn.' type of bartering.


True, but that kink of intra-family bartering doesn't contribute to the development of money.

Replies:   Ernest Bywater
Ernest Bywater

@Dominions Son

True, but that kink of intra-family bartering doesn't contribute to the development of money.


It's obvious you've not been part of a large family group with lots of chores to get done. 3 kids in my family, but weekend (or longer) family gatherings on farms required all us kids doing chores, and sometimes the chore swapping could involve 3 or 4 people for the one chore by one person due to different kids picking up different aspects of the larger chores.

REP

@Michael Loucks

'Money' will very quickly develop

The money that would develop in a specific area would not be useful outside that area. A neighboring town might use something else as their money; so your money would be no good there. There is also the problem of finding something that cannot be simply made by someone in the area.

Replies:   Michael Loucks
Michael Loucks

@REP

The money that would develop in a specific area would not be useful outside that area. A neighboring town might use something else as their money; so your money would be no good there. There is also the problem of finding something that cannot be simply made by someone in the area.


The fact that these problems have been solved innumerable times throughout history tells me that it'll resolve itself fairly quickly.

Replies:   Not_a_ID  REP
Not_a_ID

@Michael Loucks

The fact that these problems have been solved innumerable times throughout history tells me that it'll resolve itself fairly quickly.


Not particularly well, or "fairly" for all concerned.

It usually defaulted to (semi-)precious metals/rare gems as those items tended to be "more stable" in terms of available supply and couldn't be easily falsified(not that people didn't try), and it also didn't rot away or otherwise "expire" on you generally speaking.

A gold coin today will likely still be a gold coin in 15 years if you lock it in your desk drawer.

If you locked a potato inside your desk drawer, I wouldn't count on finding a particularly useful potato there in 15 years.

Replies:   Dominions Son
Dominions Son

@Not_a_ID

If you locked a potato inside your desk drawer, I wouldn't count on finding a particularly useful potato there in 15 years.


Stored properly, it will grow and produce more potatoes.

Replies:   Not_a_ID
Not_a_ID

@Dominions Son

Stored properly, it will grow and produce more potatoes.


"Properly" is the operative part. If "something goes wrong" with the storage of my gold coin, and I find it years later, I still have a gold coin. Whereas that potato could no longer exist, still be there waiting to be found, or it could have multiplied on its own. But certainly, after 15 years, it wouldn't be edible at that point(but might be a viable seed still, maybe).

REP

@Michael Loucks

The fact that these problems have been solved innumerable times throughout history tells me that it'll resolve itself fairly quickly.


Yes the problems were solved, but the solution was created in a stable society.

The situation being discussed is a highly unstable society with no power structure established to coordinate activities over a large region. A solution will be created and will spread, but that requires the development of a central power structure, which will not be easily created. So the development of a common item to represent money will take a long time.

The item to be used as money is also a problem. It must be durable and not easily acquired within the region. It will have to be standardized in size and shape, and be in a variety of values. Not an easy thing to accomplish in the defined situation.

Replies:   Michael Loucks
Michael Loucks

@REP

Yes the problems were solved, but the solution was created in a stable society.


It depends on which part of the problem you're talking about. Yes, standardized units won't come immediately, but something will emerge almost immediately as the 'coincidence of wants' will quickly force the issue. This is especially true in a post-apocalyptic situation where the incidence of agricultural and mechanical skills are lacking.

Will it happen day 1? No, of course not. But, individuals in most 'modern' societies will need to quickly find a group, band together, and figure out a division of labor and training system that lets them survive. How many of the necessary skills do you have? I know I'm missing quite a few...

Replies:   REP
REP

@Michael Loucks

but something will emerge almost immediately as the 'coincidence of wants' will quickly force the issue.


I disagree. In a post-apocalyptic situation the first concern is survival.

"the 'coincidence of wants' will quickly force the issue" sounds like a reference to trade. Creating a "currency" for trade will not be that important, so trade will be straight barter system until a unifying force or event brings the people of the local area together to discuss things like the creation and enforcement of a new legal code, disputes between neighbors, and other problems that would be typical of an unstable post-apocalyptic society. That is not going to happen quickly or immediately.

Replies:   Michael Loucks
Michael Loucks

@REP

Creating a "currency" for trade will not be that important, so trade will be straight barter system until a unifying force or event brings the people of the local area together


The unifying force is to fulfill needs they can't fulfill themselves. And that's going to happen very quickly, unless you happen to have all the skills you need: farming, hunting, medicine, smithing (black, white, gun), woodworking, sewing, weaving, distilling, curing, canning, etc. If some form of 'currency' to use for exchange doesn't develop quickly, over-specialization would lead to a second collapse.

The first medium of exchange would likely be something with relative permanence as well as utility. Ammunition comes to mind.

Replies:   StarFleet Carl  REP
StarFleet Carl

@Michael Loucks

the skills you need: farming, hunting, medicine, smithing (black, white, gun), woodworking, sewing, weaving, distilling, curing, canning, etc.


Keep in mind that you just described the already existing skill set of most rural Americans raised prior to, say, 1980. It's all in the old Charlie Daniels song - "A Country Boy can survive".

While I prefer the conveniences of simply going to work and using money earned to buy things, I learned as a kid how to do all of these things above. If needs must, not an issue.

REP
Updated:

@Michael Loucks


The unifying force is to fulfill needs they can't fulfill themselves.


While that would motivate individuals to fulfill their needs, the individual would more likely turn to taking what they need. The unifying force I was speaking of would be a citizens' group, war lord, or dominant individual that the remaining citizen will support. That type of group will take a good bit of time to create and there will be many far more important issues for them to address than creating a currency.

Whatever the currency is, it has to be something that is not readily available to the locals. Ammunition could be that currency, but you still need a group in charge to define the value of each caliber of ammunition. A 30-06 round will have a higher value than a .22 round due to its greater range and stopping value. If a fixed value is not established, then you are still in Barter mode.

ETA: Ammunition would be a poor choice for every time a round is fired the amount of currency decreases. Even with reloading, the powder, lead, and primers would eventually run out.

Jim S

Well, I have to say that the ending was a surprise.

Replies:   AmigaClone  BlinkReader
AmigaClone

@Jim S

Well, I have to say that the ending was a surprise.


I agree that the ending was something I had not even considered as one of the possibilities.

BlinkReader

@Jim S

Well, I have to say that the ending was a surprise.


It almost makes me angry that such good story ended so fast :)

And at the end I have just one message for fellows who have not jet read this gem:
Read it!

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