JoNova

A science presenter, writer, speaker & former TV host; author of The Skeptic's Handbook (over 200,000 copies distributed & available in 15 languages).


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Weekend Unthreaded

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Weekend Unthreaded, 8.3 out of 10 based on 22 ratings

Tiny Url for this post: http://tinyurl.com/myczutf

151 comments to Weekend Unthreaded

  • #
    Will Janoschka

    Joann, mods please move this mess to next ‘Weekend Unbelievable” For your attention: ***very much! More chocolate on da way!

    “So long as Jared and Ivanka aren’t on the trip, President Trump will be just fine.”

    Ivanka has only high regard for Donald and like Steve tries hard to get the presidents timing correct. No need to do anything about the Paris COP 21 nonsense “The USA is not a party to that.” Let me go have fun with the idiots, please.

    Jared is young, a fast learner, and has skill at schmoozing with those who would try to harm the president! Keep your friends close; but your enemies closer! So far, I perceive no errors from the current POTUS.

    I agree mostly, Sheriff Joe seems highly opinionated, but demonstrates personal integrity like no other! Just what current POTUS need all that he can get! Putting a county Sheriff in even a minor DC position without training is currently smack dab on the POTUS learning curve!

    “Trump is all knowing and all powerful. He just pretends to be a mean, ignorant buffoon. It’s part of his master plan!”

    Indeed! when selling one must present self as whatever the customer thinks he can cheat. Upon successful ‘closing”; all ‘think’ they scammed the ignorant other! Trump has the experience to know, the other is not ignorant; but can be persuaded for equitable gain for both!

    bert

    “No really…Trump hasn’t flushed himself down yet”

    Oh! he will, something after the 2018 congressional election, and after careful review of all possibility\probability! He will resign i.e. (enough of this BS).
    Mike Pence, with much experience as Governor must become POTUS with possibly two presidential elections ahead! All then will revolve around “his pick” for VP!. . Pearfict!*
    I am getting too old for this!

    Are we having fun yet?

    Thanks for the chocolates Will – Jo

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      • #
        David-of-Cooyal-in-Oz

        Thanks A I,
        You and Pointman have made my day.
        I’ve been uneasy about what we’ve been fed in the media about Preisedent Trump, but had no way of confirming my concerns. While his article confirms my fears about what we’re generally being told, Pointman’s report on some of the detail is re-assuring.
        So again, thanks for the link.
        Cheers,
        Dave B

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      • #
        philthegeek

        Whoaaaa…the unhingiment is strong with this one. :)

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      • #
        Will Janoschka

        “Dismantling Obama’s darker legacy.”

        I agree a must read for all here at Joanne’s Please consider the comments also! Perhaps opinionated, but carry much more ‘ideas’,for consideration, than the MSM can ever produce! :-)

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    • #
      Roy Hogue

      AMEN! :-) :-) :-) :-) :-) :-) :-) :-)

      But I wish he’d do 2 things: cut off his twittering finger; put a cork in his mouth.

      10

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    David Maddison

    I have mentioned before how the UN and the elites want we Deplorables to transition from high quality animal protein such as cows, sheep, chickens etc and want us to eat insects to “save the planet”.

    See report at http://www.fao.org/docrep/018/i3253e/i3253e00.htm

    Well, here is a BBC video about insect eating.

    “Can Eating Insects Save the World”

    https://youtu.be/Acxbx-DUkL4

    As the planned destruction of Western Civilisation continues, we will see more advocacy for entomophagy.

    There are even shops in Australia that sell edible bugs:

    http://www.ediblebugshop.com.au/g/1203934/nutrition-environment.html

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  • #
    OB

    Here in the UK it is about 2230hrs and it is dark (no solar power), there is hardly any wind blowing (aero generators are putting out .48GW out of a possible 16 GW) and the wood burners are pumping it out at a shade over 2 GW. The demand is 31.3GW. so the balance of 29.5GW is coming from British nuclear, coal, gas, 2GW from France, 1GW from Holland, and a little from the British hydro dams. The lights are on and no thanks to the “green machines” as they are obviously not worth all of the money that has been poured into them.

    I’m 76 years old and if I can see that there is a disaster with the UK’s electrical supply looming on the horizon there is something wrong with the children that are supposedly in charge of the UK’s government.

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    • #
      OB

      Sorry. Forgot to include the source of the above data. It’s templar.co.uk if any one is interested.

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      • #
        ROM

        More and more as I see this energy fiasco plus lack of new dams and mines and significant public infrastructure developing in the western nations, the more I think of my Grandmother and my Mother’s saying; “Clogs to clogs in three generations
        “.

        The first generation, in this case the survivors and very young generation that lived in and through and came out of the chaos and immense destruction of lives, materiel and wealth from WW2, when peace finally came set about the immense task of rebuilding their own lives and the cleaning up and rebuilding of the cities and social structures of western civilisation.
        .

        The second generation, the sons and daughters of that first generation of survivors and the youth who made it through into the peace of the late 1940′s, built on their parents beginnings and created enormous prosperity that gave us the financial and economic resources that enabled our society to look after the young, the old and the weak and poor in order to make their lives more bearable.
        The second generation secure in the peace and prosperity created by their their fathers and mothers also created and developed new technologies, travelled widely, established huge trading and commerce organisations and enhanced global economic and international security to a level never experienced by mankind ever before.
        .

        The now third generation lives lives where it believes it is fully entitled to any desire it might wish for and demands that it be given those desires as its god given right.

        Unlike their forbearers the third generation does not seem to want to offer anything of substance and benefit to society and the community in return, being solely and completely and selfishly engrossed with their very own rigid, narrow dogmatic ideologies and their own selfish materiel demands and desires.
        Which in their ignorance they fail to see that following these ideological beliefs to their ultimate ends, they will be participating in the process of destroying the very substance of their prosperity and freedom that allowed them to promote those beliefs and ideologies.
        And doing so without any understanding as to what they are doing or what they are trying to accomplish as an end result.

        Large sections of that third generation and its children in their increasingly abject ignorance of the most basic underpinnings of society and of civilisation are now trying to tear down those very basic underpinnings of the prosperity and freedoms bequeathed to them by their parents and grandparents.
        .

        And chaos, conflict and destruction of all that was good as well as the bad again appears.

        Then the cycle begins anew.

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  • #
    David Maddison

    Every so often politicians, Gangrenes and crony capitalists advocate for massively expensive high speed rail links connecting major Australian cities.

    Firstly, the focus should be on getting existing conventional rail up to an acceptable standard. For example the average speed of a train between Sydney and Melbourne is around 80 kph. Conventional rail should be capable of speeds up to around 300kph but even if the Syd-Mel trip could average 200kph the 960km rail route could be made in under 5 hrs. That would be acceptable and probably cost effective. Current train fares tend to be more expensive than flying.

    Secondly, these massively expensive high speed (non-conventional technology) rail links as are being advocated which will cost tens or hundreds of billions of dollars are somewhat reminiscent of wind mill projects. You need an enormous amount of infrastructure (special track) most of which is unused most of the time.

    Compare high speed rail with its huge amount of infrastructure with a plane that has only airports at either end and the plane itself and its difficult to see how high speed rail on the sorts of routes we have in Australia and with our low population density can possibly compete with air travel assuming free markets.

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    • #
      PeterS

      If high speed rail was such a good idea then of all places the US would be smothered in them. Instead they went the smarter way and focused on airports and lots of flights. Having said that I do see the potential of high speed rail in special circumstances with the right conditions. For example, two heavily populated cities close by with the train making several stops within each city but running at full speed all the way outside the cities. Even in the US that’s not viable so in Australia it’s a total waste of time even thinking about it. Europe has a few such cases though. Major cities that are a fair away apart from each other, such as in the US makes flying the far better means of transport in so many ways. Of course if we think outside of “free markets” then subsidies can make fast rail a possibility even in the desert. However, we have already experienced such wasted “investments” on wind mills and the like.

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        toorightmate

        High speed rail in a large country with a small population is ludicrous.
        By the way, we do have a relatively small population.

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        • #
          PeterS

          Indeed. However, no more ludicrous than a country such as ours that exports so much of our coal to countries all over the world who are now in total building several hundred coal fired power stations yet we are lead to believe coal is so bad we must reject any notion of building just one for ourselves and only build renewable based power systems.

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        • #
          el gordo

          ‘….we do have a relatively small population.’

          This is a temporary phenomenon, have you heard of China’s Belt and Road Initiative?

          00

          • #
            PeterS

            Yes they are going to pour trillions into building an “all roads to China” infrastructure to Europe and the rest of Asia. WHo knows perhaps they will be one to Australia. I’m sure they would love that. Perhaps that explains why they like our property so much. Perhaps they intend to make Australia another province. Hmmm.

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            • #
              el gordo

              ‘Who knows perhaps they will be one to Australia.’

              The Labor Party wants Australia to join the Belt and Road Initiative, but the Coalition has been told by the Americans that its a communist takeover by stealth.

              Beijing doesn’t want to upset our unstable democratic systems, this is purely an economic strategy. Don’t be too concerned, the US and Britain still own more of this small continent than China.

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            • #
              el gordo

              ‘The top four foreign landholders in Australia are the United Kingdom, followed by the United States, Netherlands and Singapore. China is fifth on the table, just ahead of the Philippines, with 1.5m ha, just 2.8% of the total of foreign owned land. To put that in perspective, Chinese interests have less than 15% of the size of the S. Kidman and Co land-holdings.’

              Read more at https://www.businessinsider.com.au/charts-here-are-the-top-10-foreign-land-owners-in-australia-2016-9#4mqsjMvAgj8VX6gM.99

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              • #
                Dennis

                And, Chinese investors here including Hong Kong Chinese buy in inner city, eastern suburbs and lower north shore and beaches around Sydney, the dwellings have been unaffordable for most honest Australians for decades. And real estate agents here went offshore to locate new customers.

                The reasons for purchase include housing children for high school and university studies. I remember when neighbours reported only children in a home unit in the suburb of Randwick and when investigated it was found that a late teen aged sister was in charge and parents fly in regularly. The sister had a few thousand dollars in cash to pay for food and expenses for herself and the other children.

                I understand too than many in Communist China, the citizens who are permitted to practise capitalism, now a dew million people, want to secure some wealth outside of China where they can have wealth confiscated if they fall foul of the government officials. And over a certain level of A$ investment they can apply for a permanent visitor visa.

                By the way, tourism from China is increasing and is expected to well exceed the lucrative for Australia Japanese tourism and, last for a very long time as Australia is viewed to be an acceptably safe destination for Chinese people.

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              • #
                el gordo

                There is little doubt that the property boom in the east coast cities is down to the Chinese inflating the price, but the media, politicians and real estate agents say there is simply not enough new dwellings being built. This is bollocks, they are buying old stock against all the rules.

                Anyway, the best advice I can give is leave the cities to the second wave and go bush.

                00

        • #
          Rereke Whakaaro

          Most Australian Rugby players I have seen, are quite large.

          20

          • #
            Graeme No.3

            Rereke:

            But given the results in the last few years we obviously need High Speed players.

            20

      • #
        el gordo

        ‘If high speed rail was such a good idea then of all places the US would be smothered in them.’

        Donald has a vision and Xi agrees that it can re realised if they work together.

        ‘The US has formed the American Belt and Road Working Group to serve as “one node” for cooperation on the initiative, according to Matthew Pottinger, a special assistant to President Donald Trump and leader of the US delegation to the forum.

        ‘Cui confirmed that Xi and Trump still plan to meet again later in the year.’

        China Daily

        00

    • #
      Yonniestone

      What concerns me most about high speed rail is the centralization of free movement as outlined in Agenda 21,

      Agenda 21 Course:
      Abstract; One of the goals of Agenda 21 is to re-wild over 50% (plus an additional 10% for buffer zones around the re-wilded areas) of the United States. Out of necessity, this will force the human population off the rural lands and into, using Agenda 21 language, “human settlements”. Once there, the behavior of humans can be more easily monitored and controlled, thus creating, “sustainability”.

      The Wildlands Project: “Land, because of its unique nature and the crucial role it plays in human settlement, cannot be treated as an ordinary asset, controlled by individuals and subject to the pressures and inefficiencies of the market. Private land ownership is also a principal instrument of accumulation and concentration of wealth and therefore contributes to social injustice; if unchecked, it may become a major obstacle in the planning and implementation of development schemes. Social justice, urban renewal and development, the provision of decent dwellings-and healthy conditions for people can only be achieved if land is used in the interest of society as a whole.”
      The preamble to The Vancouver Action Plan approved at Habitat: United Nations Conference on Human Settlements (31 May to 11 June 1976).

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    • #
      el gordo

      ‘I do see the potential of high speed rail in special circumstances with the right conditions.’

      Decentralisation to ease the pressure on the east coast cities will require HSR to succeed.

      If the government fails to get things going in this term, then they will lose the next election.

      11

      • #
        Dennis

        Population growth by the time a high speed rail could be completed will be well above the present 24 million and estimates are for several one million population cities along the rail line route.

        10

    • #
      el gordo

      Twenty million dollars was set aside in the budget for three plans on HSR, to assist the three consortiums: South Korea, China and Japan. It seems most likely they will unite into a super consortium with land capture as a bait, they are all happy with that.

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      • #
        David Maddison

        el gordo, why is the taxpayer paying $20m so these private companies can submit plans which if adopted will make them a fortune and no doubt also cost Aussie taxpayers a fortune for what will be an almost unused “service”?

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        • #
          el gordo

          The government needs to show good faith otherwise the consortiums might think its just pork barreling.

          As I explained elsewhere, the three consortiums will accept land capture as payment.

          A transcontinental bullet train network will always be fully booked, primarily from the flood of Chinese tourists.

          20

    • #
      TdeF

      I have always loved trains. My grandfather caught one every day. I did manage to travel 12,000km from Vladivostok to Odessa. However the myth of Very Fast Trains is just that. We put a few Very Fast Trains in Victoria. Total failure. In fact the Ballarrat line (116km) was so fast the last time I tried to catch it, the schedule time had blown out to over two hours. Now single line, longer, fewer stops but mismatch in metals means it spent more time at half the speed.

      Surely it would not be too hard to allow trains to travel at least as fast as cars? 110Km/hr. No, the Greens want 350km/hr. This means it cannot stop easily. It is very dangerous. Lines need completely rebuilding and the cost is so horrific, it would be more expensive than flying. Totally unsuitable for Australia but what does our faux PM say, he can make it work. Really? So a big taxing big spending Labor budget and Green policies everywhere.

      Still it would be great to have a train which at least did what so many trains in the UK have done for the last 70 years, travel at 160km/hr. Half the speed sure, but Ballarat in 50 minutes. Mildura in 3 hours, from city centre to city centre. No checkin, security and long expensive ride from a remote airport. Who needs Very Fast Trains. Good reliable fast trains would be wonderful. The railway to Mildura is fully functional and still closed.

      I always wondered why the government could not see this and then I realised at one meeting, they can. However government income comes from cars. Most of petrol is taxation. Car registration. Even police fines. Import duties. Employment and PAYE taxes. Tyres. Exhausts. Batteries. Repairs. The car industry is huge and a major employer which costs the government nothing. So every time a public service railway closes or goes at half the speed, the government makes a fortune. While Labor and Green politicians push rail, in power they kill it. Turnbull is now promising not only a very fast train, but a new giant airport. Typical banker. We could fix what we have, but that would not make others rich.

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      • #
        el gordo

        ‘Lines need completely rebuilding and the cost is so horrific, it would be more expensive than flying.’

        Correct, its not a makeover, the China Infrastructure Bank will happily fund the continental VFT exercise .

        Planes will continue to fly, this is only an extension to open up the regions. I live on the other side of the sandstone curtain west of Sydney, it would be nice to get there in 30 minutes instead of three hours.

        30

      • #
        Dennis

        But I understand the present budget proposal is to reconstruct an existing inland rail route with heavy duty track to carry freight trains with containers double decked. And to carry rural farm produce.

        00

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          toorightmate

          I doubt that the present budget proposal allows $6,000 per METRE for rail (earthworks, below track and above track).
          I think our esteemed governments could turn this rail project into something larger than NBN (I still predict that NBN will cost more than $100 BILLION).

          00

        • #
          el gordo

          Dennis the Inland Rail is already going ahead using local money, whereas the $20 million set aside in the budget is for HSR. The government wants three plans, Japan, China , South Korea and the US backed CLARA will all get a chance to present the best plan.

          All parties accept land capture as a major part of the deal, so ultimately a super consortium is on the cards.

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      David Maddison

      I forgot to say that the other reason they want HSR is the bizarre fantasy that the train would be abke to run on windmill power. Good luck with that!

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      • #
        David Maddison

        Able not abke.

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        el gordo

        The Greens can’t have it both ways, so for them the compromise will be nuke over dirty coal.

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        • #
          Dennis

          One of the founders of Greenpiece advocated nuclear some years ago, he said he once opposed it but now realised that to obtain energy security nuclear was the answer, no emissions and waste can be dealt with satisfactorily.

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      • #
        Dennis

        Maybe with a winch attached and wire rope David [wink]

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      • #
        Griffo

        Set the spinnaker with a following breeze and the train should manage an extra 2kph.

        00

    • #
      James

      I remember reading about high speed rail for Australia, in the Silicon Chip magazine I think it was, back in about 1986. It was pie in the sky stuff then, as it is now.

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    • #

      I seem to have caused a high speed collision between fast-train proponents and facts. They blocked me from their sites and Facebook pages. Never mind; the Internet does not forget.

      There are of course “brilliant” solutions to providing wind power for very fast trains and the whole of the East Coast and Tasmania. ;-)

      If you’ve got the money and the time. If you start soon, it might be completed before Berlin’s new airport.

      On second thoughts; no hurry to start.

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    Another Ian

    http://www.coyoteblog.com/coyote_blog/2017/05/moral-princesses.html


    Moral Princesses
    May 15, 2017, 8:33 am

    I liked this term from Bleeding Heart Libertarians. Perhaps it is common but I have not heard it before. It seems apt:

    Moral Princesses. In “The Princess and the Pea,” the prince believes that real princesses are so sensitive that a single pea place under 25 feet of bedding will disrupt their sleep. The general idea is that real princesses are sensitive to irritations that wouldn’t bother crude commoners.

    Expanding on this idea, some people wish to signal that they are, for lack of a better phrase, moral princesses. They are so sensitive to moral concerns that they are enraged by things the rest of us crude commoners do not even notice. By frequently expressing their sensitivity, they thereby prove they are better than everyone else. (See this paper on moral grandstanding for more.)

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    • #
      ROM

      Another Ian @ #9
      .

      A self created personal dictum that I came to accept many years ago is;

      When a social mores becomes the subject of dissenting discussion and challenge it is already being forced to begin to change.n

      30

    • #
      Rereke Whakaaro

      That comment is totally inappropriate. It is not acceptable to refer to sensitive young women in such a fashion.

      20

      • #
        Andrew McRae

        :D

        Take a spoon full of concrete, princess Rekkers!

        It also brings new meaning to Jo’s repeated warning to “watch the pea”, which also usually turns out to be some inconsistency in Green rhetoric that we’re all expected to be outraged about.
        I shall cease and desist in this line of investigation before it gets me into even more hot water with our generous host.

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        toorightmate

        RW,
        Cool off with a swim in the ool.

        00

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      TdeF

      “In the UK we are being bludgeoned and pulverised by the media with the statement “UK air pollution causes 40,000 deaths each year” then after some time the word “premature” was inserted. ”

      Really I had read this too. Now I know where the information comes from. They make it up. The word premature can mean a week.

      There was a time when premature deaths related to the massive maternal (30%) and infant mortality (50%) of the Victoria era. Now it means not dying of old age, at any age, by any amount of time. Even a month.

      In Australia our air is pristine. All our CO2 goes to New Zealand anyway. 98% of our own CO2 comes from overseas. This CO2 pollution is nonsense, beyond satire. The fact that we are blowing up clean free coal power stations is criminal. The fact that we are paying massive electricity taxes to overseas companies equally reprehensible.

      Then the ratbag idea that there is endless and free energy to be had in the wind and sun. Firstly no energy is free. Coal is also free and for electricity, far cheaper and easier to harvest. Our coal power stations seem large but occupy tiny amounts of real estate, unlike wind. As for endless, renewable means replaceable and unreliable, intermittent. We are talking twenty year lifespan. By the time we finish building these installations which produce 0% power most of the day, we will have to demolish them.

      At present we are burning 1 million years of sunlight in coal in one year. Solar is pitiful in comparison. So we will run out. That $1.5Trillion dollars should be spent on developing other power sources but our politicians and science hating Greens want to go back to the past for solutions. Then as a new third world country without adequate energy and food and transport we will rediscover what caused real premature deaths, not these fantasy statistics by cosseted academics and activists.

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        TdeF

        It was reckoned when the British first traded with India, the average life expectancy was 24 years. Even today in Russia, for men it is 51 years, one of the worst in the world. So many women died in Britain in childbirth that children often grew up in orphanages or with step mothers, so the stories of the evil stepmother abounded. Then you had black lung, asbestosis, mad hatters (arsenic), phossy jaw (phosphate in matchsticks), plumb crazy (lead, mercury)(plumbum, lead) and the classics from Cholera and the Black Death. Now we have CO2?

        To abuse the great advances of mankind in creating clean power is tragic. To blow up efficient, clean power stations producing smoke free electricity is just nuts. The environmental movement is like Saturn, eating his children. People looking to make a difference are now the problem with their demands we move back to the past, which was horrible and deadly.

        The environmental movement has lost its way and has been corrupted by power hungry socialists and communists. You can read about it in Dr. Patrick Moore’s book Confessions of a Greenpeace dropout, how the failed communists took over Greenpeace. Then the lawyers. Then the businessmen. It has metastasized into a multibillion dollar business which now attacks everyone. Global Warming is fake. CO2 is the cause of the war in Syria, as suggested by Bill Maher HBO host in the US.

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        Rereke Whakaaro

        All our CO2 goes to New Zealand anyway.

        And we thank you for it. It does our sheep and cattle grazing, and forestry industries, no end of good.

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      Will Janoschka

      Another Ian May 20, 2017 at 9:17 am

      “Re diesel polution”

      Another socialist SCAM, because few learn rather than accept someones belief! What is the difference between N2O, NO, and NO2, how are they manufactured, used, and abused? Any can result in death in large quantities! Of course so can H2O. H2O is not an atmospheric rare gas at 40,000 ppmv, yet definitely controls 97% :-) of the weather, anywhere on this planet.
      Natural gas (CH4) produces less CO2 than coal, per kWh but produces much more H2O (weather control) per kWh! Both are required for any type of Earth life and plants must have nitrogen for survival! How can any, including NOx ever be considered a “pollutant” when all are “necessary”?
      BTW NOx, like Pb, can be removed from Diesel exhaust if ever determined necessary!, But not inexpensively!
      All the best!-will-

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      Rereke Whakaaro

      I think that piece of art has more to do with the hotel, like most of Venice, sinking into the mud, rather than making a statement about climate change.

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        Graeme No.3

        Rereke Whakaaro:

        I think it looks more like a description of the average statements about climate change “being swamped with sludge**”.

        ** euphemism.

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    clipe

    Figure 6. Tone of Trump’s Coverage by News Outlet

    .

    Journalists need to resist even the smallest temptation to see themselves as opponents of government. It’s the competition between the party in power and the opposing party, and not between government and the press, that’s at the core of the democratic process

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      TdeF

      We have the same in Australia with Fairfax and the ABC, determined and unelected opponents of any conservative government. Haters. These are the ones who stopped Victoria’s coal exports in their infancy, having a Labor government order a stop to the export of $400Million of brown coal, because removing the water would make it ‘blacker’. That exceeds any reasonable action by a government. Who benefited from stopping this export? Only the journalists who showed they can force a government to do what they want, no matter how fundmentally wrong.

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        clipe

        Things you’ll never read in the mentioned news outlets. (add CBC, BBC et alia)

        Introduction and Methodology

        “The press is your enemy,” said the president. “Enemies. Understand that? . . . Because they’re trying to stick the knife right in our groin.”

        Donald Trump’s ongoing feud with the media is not the first time a president has felt wronged by the press. The opening words are those of Richard Nixon.[1] Virtually every president since Nixon has obsessed over what they’ve seen as unfair treatment by the press. In the first two years of his presidency, Bill Clinton persuaded Congress to enact a tax increase on upper incomes, a family leave program, NAFTA, deficit reduction, the Brady bill, a youth training program, and other initiatives, yet was mired in a slew of headlines about Travelgate, Whitewater, and other alleged wrongdoings. In a Rolling Stone interview, Clinton exploded at his treatment by the press: “I’ve fought more damn battles here than any president in 20 years with the possible exception of Reagan’s first budget and not gotten one damn bit of credit from the knee-jerk liberal press. I am damn sick and tired of it.”[2]

        What’s different with President Trump is that he’s taken the fight to the press, openly and with relish. Nixon worked largely behind the scenes, threatening to take away broadcasters’ licenses if they didn’t shape up. Ronald Reagan created what amounted to a White House news service, feeding stories directly to local news outlets in order to bypass the national press. George W. Bush extended that strategy, adding video feeds to the mix. Clinton and Barack Obama relied on one-on-one interviews with reporters in an effort to get out their side of the story. During his presidency, Obama held more than a thousand such interviews.[3]

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          Rereke Whakaaro

          There is a saying that I once heard in Washington: “It is the Media that runs this country, it is the President’s job, to provide the funding.”

          At the time, I thought it was a joke.

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      Another Ian

      I was just recalling a bit of statistics the other day – (given equal chances) the astronomical odds of being continually wrong in successive tries.

      Looks like most of those news outlets have sung Trump’s praises in beating the system!

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    Mark M

    The never ending drought is so bad in Australia that we have record hay exports to Asia!

    “AUSTRALIAN hay exports hit another record last year, continuing a stunning run for the sector and making it the fourth year in a row of consecutive growth.

    According to figures released by the Australian Fodder Industry Association 989,000 tonnes of hay were exported last year, mainly to Asia.”

    http://www.weeklytimesnow.com.au/agribusiness/cropping/hay-export-surge-continues/news-story/68c35b71cbf087a769371396d4df5482

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    TdeF

    From Said Hanrahan by Father Patrick Hartigan

    ..
    And every creek a banker ran,
    And dams filled overtop;
    “We’ll all be rooned,” said Flannery,
    “If this rain doesn’t stop.”

    “In God’s good time” the rain stopped and spring arrived with “harvest-hopes immense”. The “knee-deep” grass, while good for feeding livestock, brought to mind the risk of bushfire.

    “There’ll be bush-fires for sure, me man,
    There will, without a doubt;
    We’ll all be rooned,” said Flannery,
    Before the year is out.”

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    • #
      Will Janoschka

      el gordo May 20, 2017 at 11:07 am
      “Seed bank has temporary loss of chill following extreme weather.”

      So what? Two C-130 flights can easily transport all of those seeds, with proper refrigeration, to Antarctica with 3 km deep glaciers that insolation refuses to melt. What will earthlings find at the bottom of a 3 km thick glacier? Perhaps the new millennium home of Santa Clause! I wonder what he does with all that reindeer crap!
      All the best!-will-

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      AndyG55

      Apparently that tunnel leaks every summer.

      Its all just more yapping !!

      10

      • #
        AndyG55

        http://www.popsci.com/

        “Flooding is probably not quite the right word to use in this case,” says Cary Fowler, who helped create the seed vault. “In my experience, there’s been water intrusion at the front of the tunnel every single year.”

        Fowler wasn’t at the seed vault this year when the flooding (or ‘flooding’) in question took place, but has extensive knowledge of the project and facilities. He explains that a 100 meter long tunnel leads into the heart of the mountain where the seed vault is stored, running at a slight downward slope. At the base of the slope are two pumping stations to remove any water that might get in. Then there’s a slight uphill section before you reach the doors to the vault itself, where the seeds are kept at 0.4 degrees Fahrenheit or -18 Celsius.

        “The tunnel was never meant to be water tight at the front, because we didn’t think we would need that,” Fowler says. “What happens is, in the summer the permafrost melts, and some water comes in, and when it comes in, it freezes. It doesn’t typically go very far.”

        40

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          Mary E

          My sister mentioned the flooding of the seed bank to me, as proof that I was off my rocker in not being “appalled and aghast” at the current state of the climate.

          So I looked up the vault, and the press release the vault issued, and the less shouty articles, and emailed them off to her. Being generally level-headed, I am hoping that she takes the word of the vault site itself to mean that no, it didn’t FLOOD, it just had a little damp in the same place it usually does, and no seeds were ever at risk.

          10

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    Ross

    Reading the stories about the Chinese “Silk Road” project is enlightening. I have been following this for several years as I think it shows truly amazing foresight and a lot of bravery on the part of the Chinese.

    The MSM and TV commentators seem to think it is something new. Billions have been spent already with more billions to follow.

    It is also why I sit back and laugh when the MSM go on about the Chinese supposedly making big efforts in the AGW area –yes they are trying hard on reducing genuine pollution but that is just part of getting on with growing Chinese independence and security ( in all its forms) for it’s people.

    50

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  • #
    pat

    PICS: 19 May: Weather Channel: Jon Erdman: Winter Storm Valerie Dumps 40+ Inches of Snow in Colorado; Cheyenne, Wyoming’s Heaviest Late-Spring Storm in 74 Years
    The top amount from Valerie so far was 42 inches near Allenspark, Colorado, followed closely by 41.7 inches of mid-May snow near Ward…
    While Wyoming’s capital city has picked up several less-heavy snow events as late as mid-June, this was the heaviest calendar-day snow so late in the spring on record, there.
    In fact, the only other snowstorm of record with at least 11 inches of snow this late in spring occurred 74 years ago, during World War II…
    Logan, Utah, picked up more than 4 inches of snow by May 17, only the second time in history dating to 1893 they’ve had such a heavy snowfall so late in the spring…
    https://weather.com/storms/winter/news/winter-storm-valerie-rockies-snow-forecast-mid-may-2017

    10

  • #
    pat

    19 May: M2Now NZ: An Arctic Blast is Bringing Snow to Much Of New Zealand
    by Isaac Taylor
    Prepare to stay indoors this weekend as the Met Service has raised Severe Weather Warnings issued for Heavy Snow and Severe Gales around the country.
    In a post left on Facebook a few hours ago the Met Service has warned of snow landing around the country.

    “A cold front working up the South Island today is set to bring strong winds and snow, with some heavy falls in the far south.”
    “The latest warning issued on http://bit.ly/SWWarnings forecasts 10-20cm of snow above 400m in the far south. Lesser amounts will fall at lower altitudes. Further north, snow is expected as low as 800m over the central North Island, with the potential for 1-3cm of snow on the Desert Road.”
    “The winds will also be strong ahead of the front, the worst of which could include gusts up to 120km/h in the far south. Behind the front cold southwesterlies will persist through Saturday, gradually easing on Sunday.”…

    While snow may not be landing everywhere, the weekend will be marked by bitter cold winds for pretty much everybody…
    http://www.m2now.co.nz/1-arctic-blast-bringing-snow-much-new-zealand/

    19 May: WeatherNetworkCanada: Potential for up to 50 cm of snow for Victoria Day weekend
    As the countdown to summer begins, winter weather is hanging on in Atlantic Canada.
    Environment Canada has issued snowfall and rainfall warnings, as well as special weather statements for areas of southern Labrador and northern Newfoundland. Labrador could see up to 50 cm of localized snowfall with this incoming system…
    https://www.theweathernetwork.com/news/articles/blowing-snow-and-rain-this-weekend-in-newfoundland-and-labrador/82412

    20

  • #

    In much the same manner that China now leads the World in Coal fired power generation technology, the same thing is happening in China with their Hydro electricity technology.

    At the beginning, the Chinese got in the ‘biggies’ of the power generation companies, your Siemens, GE, etc etc, and they constructed the first few of them, turbines, generators, whole of process things, and from there the Chinese just went out and did them all on their own, probably in major licensing deals with those biggies.

    So, while China powers ahead with coal fired generation technology, the same thing is happening with their Hydro, and again, at the start, they used the biggies, and then they just did it on their own, consistently improving on the processes.

    Right now, at the end of 2016, Hydro in Chinese generates almost 20% of all power being generated (19.7%) with coal fired power at 65%.

    Now I know data and percentages seem pretty meaningless, but that amount of Hydro power being generated in China, 1180TWH, is SIX TIMES the total power generation here in Australia, from EVERY source, and is increasing at the rate of around 6% plus each year.

    And while hydro in China powers ahead, something similar to what is happening with coal fired power is also happening with hydro. Other Countries are now looking to China for Hydro technology as well.

    China’s hydro at such humungous levels is actually what is keeping the World’s renewable power total at such a high percentage.

    Wind Power in China generates only 4% of China’s power at a Capacity Factor of only 17%.

    Solar Power in China generates only 1.1% of their power.

    So while green acolytes will point to China as having 25% of their power from renewables, be very aware that 20% of that is from Hydro.

    Tony.

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    • #
      David Maddison

      As I have said before, hydro is a legitimate engineered system capable of continuous power output. It predates large scale windmills and sunshine panels by a century or so and it should not be counted among the badly engineered and non-viable “renewables” like wind and sun power production which are not properly engineered, continuous or sustainable power generating technologies. Hydro is the only thing that makes “renewables” look good. Wind and sun power arise from the thought bubbles of ignorant politicians, gangrenes and public serpents who advise politicians, no true or great engineers were ever involved. We pro-science and engineering people should not make the semantic mistake of calling hydro renewable, just as anti-science people would not call a breeder reactor renewable. We should distinguish between properly engineered systems and whatever you wish to call the others, a polite name for which I haven’t thought of yet.

      51

      • #
        Rereke Whakaaro

        I refer to hydro (of which we have a fair bit), as being “continuous”.

        To my mind, that puts it a step above “renewable’s”, since “renewable” technology needs to be taken off-line and replaced from time to time.

        30

      • #
        Robber

        At 6pm yesterday, fossils were producing 22,000 MW of peak demand of 25,000 MW in the AEMO zones. Hydro was producing 2,500 MW although it suddenly was cut to 1800 MW due to a blip in total demand. Of course solar was producing zero, and wind 500 MW. Yes, those renewables are really making a difference to Australia’s electricity supplies and helping to save the planet.

        But at what price? Average wholesale (ie ex supplier into the grid) electricity price for Victoria in May 2017 is $120/MWhr. In May 2016 the average price was $54/MWhr. And those numbers are before the payment of $82/MWhr to “renewable” suppliers is factored into retail prices.

        Still waiting for Dr Alan Finkel to complete his review of the national electricity market and explain how we can return to affordable electricity. The Final Report is to be submitted to the Council of Australian Governments by the middle of 2017.

        The Department of Environment & Energy is also working on a review of Australia’s climate change policies. Can’t wait for them to report what a disaster those policies have been in their impact on Australia’s competitiveness. But I am sure they will loudly boast about how we are meeting our commitment to the Paris accord. Public submissions closed May 5, but no sign of their release.

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    James

    I bought my first shares in a Coal producing company today. I bought into Alliance Resource Partners. Given the forecast demand for steel, and the large number of coal powered generating plants that are being built in the world, I thought it was a good time to buy in. This stock pays an 8 percent dividend yield, and the PE is 5. The world will always need coal!

    50

  • #
    pat

    19 May: LA Times: Hugo Martin: Endless winter? California ski resorts plan to keep slopes open this summer
    Californians are blessed with the natural resources to ski and surf in the same day. For the first time in years, denizens of the Golden State may be able do both deep into summer…

    At Mammoth Mountain in the Eastern Sierra and Squaw Valley west of Lake Tahoe, the slopes are expected to remain open through the Fourth of July weekend — and perhaps beyond. Squaw Valley is promising even more: a season that could continue nonstop into next winter.
    “It literally could be a 550-day season,” said Andy Wirth, chief executive of Squaw Valley Ski Corp., which operates the Squaw Valley and Alpine Meadows resorts, located about six miles apart…

    “The snow often fell at such a high rate, frankly, the resorts couldn’t keep up with it,” said Michael L. Reitzell, president of the California Ski Industry Assn., a trade group for 29 ski resorts in California and Nevada…

    ‘Like midwinter still’
    “As of right now, it’s daily operations for a while,” said (Mammoth Mountain) resort spokeswoman Lauren Burke. She added that the base of the mountain still has 140 inches of snow, with 300 inches of snowpack near the peak…
    “The mountain looks like midwinter still,” she said.

    At Squaw Valley, some chairlifts are still buried in up to 360 inches of snow, and a closing date has yet to be announced…
    Over the last 50 years, Squaw Valley has operated on July 4 only three times, most recently in the 2010-11 season…
    Across the Nevada border, Mt. Rose Ski Tahoe plans to operate for the first time in resort history until the Memorial Day weekend. The Reno resort closed last year on May 8…
    http://www.latimes.com/business/la-fi-summer-skiing-20170519-story.html

    19 May: LA Times: Essential California: Some of your favorite beaches will be hit hard by global warming

    above summarises and links to:

    19 May: LA Times Science Now: Amina Khan: Rising sea levels could mean twice as much flood risk in Los Angeles and other coastal cities
    Scientists have found that a mere 10 to 20 centimeters of sea-level rise — which is expected by 2050 — will more than double the frequency of serious flooding events in many parts of the globe, including along the California coastline.
    The findings (LINK), described in Scientific Reports, highlight the environmental and economic impacts of sea-level rise on coastal areas…
    As global warming marches onward and land-ice reserves continue to melt into the seas — thanks in large part to human-produced greenhouse gases — oceans are continuing their upward creep…
    http://www.latimes.com/science/sciencenow/la-sci-sn-sea-level-floods-20170518-story.html

    00

    • #
      Curious George

      Is a late opening of a ski season a climate-related damage? Is an extended ski-season a climate-related damage? How much climate-related damage worldwide was there in 2014, 2015, and 2016? Does it come close to $300 bn?

      10

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    David Maddison

    Any so-called “scientist” that promotes the false belief of CAGW or any “engineer” that promotes or works on wind or solar plant (except in remote locations where such plant is operationally necessary) are a disgrace to their professions and should resign and take up an occupation where they can’t waste other people’s money or where their lack of critical thinking skills will not matter.

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    • #

      I’m baffled why there are solar panels to power some sort of gear on the side of the Freeway here in W.A.; when right next to the panel and equipment box, is a light pole with lamp that lights up every night (and on some days).

      ISTM that somebody having a hard time flogging solar panels has good mates in government.

      00

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    • #
      Curious George

      I can hardly wait for the big Boom.

      20

    • #
      Rereke Whakaaro

      Ice sheet will collapse real soon now.

      Yawn, as it does every year …

      This is in the same league as, “Thousands Escape Death As Plane Flies Over”

      50

    • #
      Rereke Whakaaro

      Actually, looking at the “movie” that goes with the piece, I found that they are saying that there will be mass flooding – everybody panic!

      Except that the ice sheet is actually floating, which means that it will not affect sea levels one iota, when it melts. It will be a hazard to shipping, however.

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    David Maddison

    A friend who went to Aldi (StKilda East, Melbourne, AU) told me that they have never seen Aldi so crowded with a commensurate lack of parking. Reason? Today they are selling snow ski gear. Despite “runaway global warming” a bumper ski season is expected in Terra Australis.

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    Dennis

    The reconstruction of the rail link from Melbourne to Brisbane inland on the western plains reminded me of the late 1970s deal done by Labor governments, led by Premier Wran in NSW, that effectively handed over freight and passengers to road transport firms. Railway was downgraded.

    When Wran retired from politics the Chairman of TNT Limited, Sir Peter Ables issued a contract to a commercial cleaning firm for all TNT offices and their Ansett Airways passenger terminals (both men now deceased), an interesting new career for a lawyer and barrister.

    20

    • #
      Dennis

      A comment I received in person recently was how interesting to observe politics closely for a working lifetime, and to watch old become new again, like the “new” rail freight link.

      How many people profited from the closure and now from the reconstruction?

      So, when will the secret owners of coal deposits reveal their “new” solution to our enormous energy crisis and so called renewable energy business failures, coal fired power stations?

      And will the now children but then adults fall for it?

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  • #

    For those geologically inclined, some pics from the Edgar Range, the northern end of the Great Sandy Desert: https://pindanpost.com/2017/05/20/the-edgar-range-great-sandy-desert/

    30

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    Andrew McRae

    It’s Doom Squared at the Guardian!
    ‘Doomsday Vault’ not exempt from climate change threat
    http://www.abc.net.au/news/2017-05-20/doomsday-vault-not-exempt-from-the-threat-of-climate-change/8543482

    The Global Seed Vault, located on the Norwegian island of Spitsbergen, holds millions of seed samples of some of the world’s most vital food sources. Created in 2008, it serves as an insurance policy for humans’ survival — safeguarding against wars or natural disasters wiping out global food crops.
    The seeds require temperatures below -18 degrees Celsius. In February, Spitsbergen recorded winter temperatures as high as 6.8C.
    While none of the seeds were damaged, the weather event highlighted the vulnerabilities of the seed bank.

    Now for the facts. It’s usually much warmer than -18 degrees in summer in Svalbard and has been since long before the Seed Vault was built.
    http://i.imgur.com/hvgz5u7.png
    The trend in Tmax since 1998 is 1.3° per decade, which is about 9 times the UAH global average.
    Spitzerbergen maximum temperatures for the last ten years…
    http://i.imgur.com/OpmcVsP.png
    One warm year in 2016 does not mean the trend will continue. There was a positive trend for Jan 1998.. Jan 2008 , but virtually no trend for Jan 2006 .. Jan 2016. Too early to say if the trend is in the throes of reversing, but certainly no reason for thinking there will be unending warming.

    Next episode of Pimp my Paranoia: Yo dawg, we heard you like catastrophe, so we made an imaginary threat for your imaginary threat, so you can fear while you fear.

    20

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    David Maddison

    Excellent 4min 34sec video about the “trophic cascade” that occurred after the reintroduction of wolves into Yellowstone National Park.

    https://youtu.be/ysa5OBhXz-Q

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    • #
      David Maddison

      I got a Red Thumb for that – it just goes to show you that the Red Thumbers are against nature conservation.

      30

  • #
    Oliver K. Manuel

    CONCLUSION:

    Since the logical error used to hide nuclear energy from the public after nations and national academies of sciences were united under the UN on 24 OCT 1945 is now perfectly obvious to everyone:

    https://dl.dropboxusercontent.com/u/10640850/Nuclear_Energy_Error7.pdf

    Therefore,

    1. It will be corrected promptly, if this was an oversight.

    2. It will be ignored, if this was intentionally used to:

    • – Isolate humans from abundant power of nuclear energy
    • – Protect us from possible worldwide nuclear annihilation

    The last paragraph of Aston’s 1922 Noble Prize Lecture clearly explained the benefits & dangers of releasing nuclear energy.

    11

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    Roy Hogue

    Climate change is turning Antarctica green, say researchers

    OK! I hate to repeat myself to so many claims by those who wish it was true when it isn’t but (big, big but) I’ll buy that the minute you show me the blinking bloody empirical evidence. But you ain’t got it. :-(

    20

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    James

    The latest cause of Climage Change.

    http://www.breitbart.com/tech/2017/05/20/delingpole-penises-cause-climate-change-progressives-fooled-by-peer-reviewed-hoax-study/

    To make sure that this was not some kind of joke, I found a link to a pdf of the paper:

    https://doi.org/10.1080/23311886.2017.1330439

    Now is there anyone out there who would like to argue that science is not all about an agenda these days?

    30

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    Roy Hogue

    For anyone still following the comedy that American journalism has become, let me stick my neck out and say that in spite of increasing calls for Trump’s impeachment he will finish his first 4 years as president and if he can keep going on the things he promised the voters he’ll get a second term as well.

    Damn the torpedoes, full speed ahead — Admiral David Glasgow Farragut at the Battle of Mobile Bay, August 5, 1864, American Civil War.

    That’s not the exact quote but it quickly morphed into this more fitting version and it’s a fitting note on which Trump should continue the fight he started when no one else was willing to do it.

    20

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    Oliver K. Manuel

    Jon Rappoport’s site on logic led me to conclude that we cannot change the international web of deceit that now enslaves society unless we have first convinced ourselves and world leaders of the absolute validity of this one, ancient spiritual truth:

    Truth is victorious. Never untruth.

    https://jonrappoport.wordpress.com/2017/05/19/my-logic-course-as-a-tool-for-the-mind/

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      Oliver K. Manuel

      The decision to save the world from possible nuclear nuclear annihilation by uniting nations and national Academies of Sciences under the UN on 24 OCT 1945:

      1. Destroyed the integrity of national governments established by the people

      2. Destroyed the intergrity of government-sponsored science, worldwide

      3. Failed to keep rogue governments lfrom developing nuclear weapons

      4. Confirmed that Truth is victorious, never untruth

      00

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        Oliver K. Manuel

        In hindsight, I too might have endorsed the decision to hide nuclear energy from the public if I had witnessed the destruction of Hiroshima or Nagasaki in Aug 1945.

        May I have the wisdom now to NOT inflict more damage on our troubled society by seeking to punish those who endorsed that decision on 24 OCT 1945.

        00

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          Oliver K. Manuel

          Today I am grateful that the nuclear geo-chemist who would become my research mentor in May 1960, made my decision for me when he secretly retained a personal copy of Japan’s successful atomic bomb plans in Aug 1945, because Kuroda had the wisdom to show more respect for truth than authority.

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    Roy Hogue

    And here is the most promising development in foreign relations I have ever seen. No head scarves for wife or daughter of the president on visiting Saudi Arabia.

    If the president of the United states and the Saudi King meet as equals, both leaders of sovereign nations, then why would our women be required to adapt to local belief when we do not impose any such restriction on citizens of Saudi Arabia when they come here?

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    • #
      Roy Hogue

      And then I see that he had to go and bow down like his predecessor. I thought it was a good firm handshake between equals. That silver lining isn’t always stirling I guess. One bows to someone to whom he is a subject or a servant, not an equal.

      00

      • #
        Rereke Whakaaro

        It costs nothing in prestige, to follow local custom – whatever the local customs are – but it gains you a lot, in terms of goodwill.

        As they say, when in Rome …

        10

        • #
          Matty

          No harm in observing local customs but don’t expect to no holding hands with QEII when she visits USA.

          10

          • #
            Rereke Whakaaro

            From previous observations, the Queen will shake his hand, in a demure way. Whether he bows or not is up to his protocol geeks.

            00

        • #
          Roy Hogue

          I have no problem with observing local customs, at least up to a point. But when someone is a guest in your house, I’ll bet that you allow them to be who they are. So RW, could your wife go uncovered in Saudi Arabia without trouble? There is an inequality of treatment here that I do not like. It needs to change.

          10

          • #
            Rereke Whakaaro

            I spent some time in the Middle East, before I was married, and I have to say that most of the European women, where I was, wore their hair short, because of the heat, but left it uncovered, also because of the heat.

            They all needed their husband’s or father’s permission, however, and that was the bit that rankled with me, and still does in fact.

            00

            • #
              Roy Hogue

              That’s a part of the world I’ve never been to myself. But I did work with someone who had just finished a lengthy assignment on a project for the Saudi military and he had a few observations similar to what you said in reply to me (#35.1.1.2.1) and I’ve remembered his general observation to this day — acceptable behavior for women is a matter of implicit or sometimes explicit coercion according to him and the male head of family rules the day with no recourse.

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                Rereke Whakaaro

                Yep, that is pretty much it.

                On reflection, some large American Corporates are run by the top man, who is a Alpha Male. I wonder which alpha male has been appointed to run the Trump Empire while the Donald is running the country, and most of the western world.

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        Mary E

        No bowing. He bent over to accept a medal of some sort. Dude’s a bit taller than the average arab.

        00

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    el gordo

    Regional Warming

    ‘The city is currently experiencing a warmer than usual May with the temperature for the month so far sitting nearly one degree Celcius above the May average.

    “We’ve been travelling a bit above the average for May,” said Steph Spackman, a duty forecaster at the Bureau of Meteorology. “We’ve only had three days below 20 degrees.”

    Oz

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    The global warming weather channel host said today that the rain event in QLD was predicted thanks to the computer model.
    No mention of the sattalite picture of a massive low off the coast.
    We are told to believe that a computer model that predicted the obvious circumstance a few days away will predict with total accuracy what will happen in 100 years time.

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    el gordo

    Odds shorten on Adani getting the nod.

    ‘The Turnbull government has quietly axed eight environmental conditions aimed at protecting vulnerable turtle species set to be affected by Adani’s proposed $3 billion coal terminal expansion at Abbot Point in Queensland.’

    SMH / Hannam

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    Wayne Job

    Today I have a complaint about the sceptical society of Australia. A friend of mine has been pursuing a scientific notion for forty years, for about ten years I have been assisting him as I am an engineer and can design and build stuff. We have some weird results that according to main stream science are impossible. A couple of weeks ago the sceptical society offered us $100,000 if we can prove to them that what we are saying is correct. My friend sent them an email accepting the challenge with a small video showing our results, they will now not talk to us, they have backed out without explanation. Has anyone on this site had dealings with mob as they appear to be charlatans of the worst order. The good news for us this week is that we now have three professors very interested to try and explain the results.https://vimeo.com/214639880 This is the little video we sent them if a password is asked for it is force5.

    These buggers gave us the challenge, we accepted for what we have is a robust result, wrong according to science as it stands, but all the same a robust result. Wayne

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      Robber

      The video didn’t provide enough explanation of what was being done for me to understand the hypothesis.

      10

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        Wayne Job

        We are generating a magnetic field, huge in dimension without an input from electricity or any magnetic source. This field magnetises sealed hollow things like cars fridges ect north on the outside and south on the inside. Hollow tubing that is not sealed on the ends gets magnetised in a random pattern along its length N>SSNNSNNSSN we have tried to find some set pattern to it all, but it seems random. This strange magnetic field extends for at least a half a kilometre around the apparatus. It does other stuff that has nothing to do with magnetism but that is for another time.

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    Germany’s Chancelloress Merkel has given up on the target of 1 million electric vehicles on Germany roads by 2020; being just 940,000 buyers short of the target at the start of this year.

    Columnist Henryk Broder tries to explain the laws of supply and demand in the matter; but Merkel’s privileged upbringing in the former East Germany may have immunised her against perceiving the reality that buyers will buy what they want in a market economy; even if bribes are on offer to buy something else.

    Germany has so far spent (at least) 4.7 billion Euros subsidising EVs and their buyers.

    Merkel, who has a PhD in Physics, was reported to have said that “At the moment; it does not look like we well reach the target.” Later she added that “certain technical developments suddenly expand exponentially from a certain point” (similar to Smartphones). Of course nobody had the guts to tell Merkel that Smartphones are a different proposition to EV’s which require and infrastructure that is not, and will not be present if the Energiewende continues.

    Germans would have to exploit the calorific value of their cash (once again) to heat up boilers to make steam and to turn generators to recharge their EV batteries.

    20

    • #
      Willard

      It’s not 2020 yet, but speaking of predictions and one that you got completly wrong not much more than a few years ago was your prediction below:
      “The result is that electric cars will be city-bound; as the range is limited to about 100 km in practice; and will probably have no more than 2 seats. With such a short range, they will need frequent recharging and/or battery swaps if used for another purpose”.

      So let’s just summarise how far wrong your prediction was, there are now full size electric vehicles available with a range of 600kms plus with 5 seats and acceleration that European luxury petrol sedans could only dream of.
      Any more electric car predictions you would like to make Bernd?

      03

      • #

        Those were not predictions. Those were calculated results deduced from the physical limits of “affordable” batteries.

        That 600km range only lets it complete one hot lap of the Nürburgring. The car eventually completes the second lap at snail’s pace.

        The “practical”, small EVs which are somewhat affordable have a reliable range of less than 100km; unless conditions are ideal. Throw the need to cope with darkness, rain, snow, heat or a constant, long, fast climb when loaded to capacity, and their batteries run low very quickly.

        German consumers are more generally aware of the limits of EV and even a bribe of thousands of Euros will not entice them to buy one instead of a turbo-diesel of direct-injected gasoline-fuelled car; a car that’ll take them along the Autobahn all day at 130 to 150 km/h; only stopping for a few minutes every 600 to 1000 km for refuelling.

        Merkel was never going to convince sane car buyers to opt for an EV when they need real mobility. Merkel has thrown in the towel: It’s over.

        There is no “breakthrough” that redefines electrolytic storage. The extremes of the periodic table have been explored and greater storage density will only result in substantially greater volatility; even more than Li-Ion.

        20

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          Willard

          Those were not predictions. Those were calculated results deduced from the physical limits of “affordable” batteries.
          From your comment above Bernd it’s apparently that your claims using “calculated results” was incorrect, by a long way, 2 seats and 500kms short in fact, you should have stuck with prediction when you weren’t so far behind.
          Why would a 5 seat family sedan need to do more than 1 lap of the Nurburgring? If someone wants to drive multiple laps of the ring they’d use this-http://www.roadandtrack.com/new-cars/videos/a33498/watch-the-nio-ep9-lap-the-nurburgring-faster-than-any-production-car/ , the fastest lap of the Nurburgring is help by an electric car.
          There are multiple affordable EVs with a range of over 300kms, Chevy Bolt or better still the Renault Zoe now being driven in Europe and has found its way across to NZ.

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        Rereke Whakaaro

        Still pushing your creed, eh Willard?

        Have you sold anything yet? Have you even managed to get somebody interested?

        To add to what Bernd has said: If light, reliable, safe batteries were available, the FAA would authorise them for use in commercial aircraft. Just saying …

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        • #
          Willard

          Still pushing the old “Willard must be a salesman” line Rereke? I guess because you have nothing constructive to say against EVs you play the man and not the ball.
          Bernd’s statement was concerning electric cars not being able to cover more than 100kms on a charge, nothing to do with commercial aircraft, changing the subject now Rereke?

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            Rereke Whakaaro

            Not at all.

            1. Salespersons are people who naturally see everything in the best possible light, and resist seeing anything that might be to the detriment of the “next big thing”, that they are currently ventilating over, today.

            So I am not playing the man per se, – But I am playing the marketing hype in the glossy brochures that you are quoting from. Everything you have said on this site, on this subject, is the best possible performance for any EV. And some of what you claim, presumably taken from the literature, confounds the laws of physics.

            2. I have experience of working EV’s. They have been used on airfieds, to tow baggage carts, air-start units, and other small but heavy objects, for some time, now. They will run for several days, whilst the batteries are new. But once the batteries have been cycled for a few dozen times, they need recharging twice or three times per day.

            On airfields they have extra EV’s to take up the load whilst the others are recharging. Nobody thinks twice about it, in a confined area like an airfield. But you would need considerable infrastructure to be in place, before you could drive across the Nullarbor Plain. Nobody will build that infrastructure until there are sufficient EV’s to give a return on the required investment, in a reasonable timeframe. Chicken and Egg.

            As far as I am aware, Bernd is a practising engineer; he certainly knows his stuff, in this area, and real knowledge trumps book learning (or pamphlet reading) every time.

            And I was not changing the subject, in relation to Bernd’s comment, at all. If you knew anything, you would know that new technology that works, is immediately taken up and used in parallel applications. A lighter weight battery, that will hold full charge for longer, has been sought by the aviation industry for some time. I am waiting to see if the FAA gives a stamp of approval to the batteries used in EV’s. That would be to the benefit to everybody.

            And for the record, I did not “play the man” per se. You took it that way, which I suppose is your prerogative. I was merely inquiring about your success rate, in raising the enthusiasm level regarding EV’s. Success breeds success, after all. Unfortunately, the opposite is also tends to be true.

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            • #
              Willard

              1. I don’t look at electric vehicles in the best possible light, I reply to misleading statements on this site with regards to electric vehicles, if Bernd wants to publish a statement that electric cars will not have more than 2 seats and not travel more than 100kms on a charge I can provide a rebuttal that says he is incorrect and has been done so by a vehicle that can be purchased and driven today.
              2. Comparing the batteries iand management system on Tarmac baggage vehicles to modern electric vehicles designed for road use is not relevant.
              3.Bernd may well be a practicing engineer, I would expect he would now go out and take the time to study modern electric vehicles and up date his information, at the moment he is a sitting target if he wants to take cheap shots at electric vehicles.
              4.locations across the Nullabor plain (and other outback locations) have no shortage of electrical generation, it’s increasing every year as travellers expect the comforts of home, the power is there to charge multiple cars, what is lacking on occasions is the equipment to speed up the charge rate, the more cars the more incentive to install that equipment.
              5.seeing as you mentioned aircraft again here’s a short video of a training aircraft that’s been operating for over a year, far cheaper to fuel, cheaper to maintain, and a slight noise reduction that offers lessens the restrictions due to noise close to residential areas- https://m.youtube.com/watch?v=WiADDbeFanU

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  • #
    Robber

    Yet another inquiry into Australia’s electricity prices.
    On 27 March 2017 the Treasurer, the Hon Scott Morrison MP, directed the ACCC to hold an inquiry into the supply of retail electricity and the competitiveness of retail electricity prices.
    A preliminary report is due to the Treasurer by 27 September 2017 and a final report by 30 June 2018.
    So we have three inquiries underway. This one by the ACCC, the Dr Alan Finkel review into the affordability and reliability of the National Electricity Market, and the Dept of Environment & Energy review of Australia’s climate change policies and their impact on prices and competitiveness.
    I wouldn’t have thought it was that difficult.
    According to AEMO, last year wholesale electricity prices in NSW and Qld were 5.2 and 6.0 cents/KWhr. This year they have jumped to 8.1 and 9.5 cents/KWhr.
    In Vic and SA, prices last year were 4.6 and 6.2 cents/KWhr. This year they have jumped to 9.3 and 10.9 cents/KWhr. And since Hazelwood closed in March those prices have increase to 11.2 and 12.5 cents.

    Yet the odd thing is that AEMO still reports plenty of reserve capacity. So how many participants are there, and how are they bidding to set higher prices?

    AGL owns Loy Yang in Vic and Bayswater and Liddell in NSW, plus gas generators and solar, yet if you watch their latest ads they are saying that they will be out of coal by 2050, and all clean and green using “renewables”. They make claims about affordability, but nowhere I could find do they defend the rise in prices. However they did make a submission to the Finkel inquiry: “The piecemeal introduction of carbon reduction and renewables policies has produced unintended consequences for wholesale energy markets, most apparent in South Australia which has been disproportionately impacted due to its superior wind resource attracting a large share of renewables investment. In order for the energy market transition to effectively respond to the competing policy objectives, which it must deliver concurrently (reliable and secure electricity supply, delivered at an affordable price, with increased integration of renewable energy capacity), AGL believes actions in three key areas are critical: Orderly closure through an energy intensity scheme; adding a requirement for dispatchability to new intermittent generation; protecting customers”.

    Another submission to the Finkel inquiry by the Energy Users Association highlights the problem. “Progressively over the last 10 years Australia has given up its comparative advantage in competitively priced, highly reliable energy which has underpinned significant industrial development and employment for many decades. If allowed to continue on this trajectory this comparative advantage will be permanently lost and along with it, a majority of energy intensive industry including many industrial, food processing and manufacturing industries”.

    So three inquiries by three bureaucracies to report maybe this year, maybe next, no doubt all treading the PC line of saving the planet, while we all pay through the nose for electricity, and more industries shut down.

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