Inside Japan’s Nuclear Meltdown WHEN Tue., Sep. 9, 2014, 12:30 – 2 p.m. WHERE Harvard, Bowie-Vernon Room (K262), 2nd Floor, CGIS Knafel, 1737 Cambridge Street, Cambridge MA GAZETTE CLASSIFICATION Lecture, Social Sciences ORGANIZATION/SPONSOR Program on U.S.-Japan Relations SPEAKER(S) Gregory Jaczko, former chairman, U.S. Nuclear Regulatory Commission (2009-12); Kenji Tateiwa, manager of nuclear power programs, Washington [...]
gmoke commented on the diary post Solar Roadways: The Amtrak Commission and Other News by Phoenix Woman.
A DOT engineer evaluates the Solar Roadway concept: http://www.greentechmedia.com/articles/read/Department-of-Transportation-Official-Discusses-Solar-Roadways “I believe the application can be used for smaller scale purposes — potentially, pedestrian walkways and sidewalks that get lower load and have fewer safety considerations,” Eric Weaver said. “For roads, there are so many unknowns…. “In terms of the long-term vision, I don’t consider it [...]
Turns out Sinclair Lewis spent a (very) little time at Upton Sinclair’s commune in NJ and sold some plots for short stories to Jack London. Read _It Can’t Happen Here_ after the Bush/Cheney coup but read most of the others when I was in high school. Lewis created a linked world where Elmer Gantry appears [...]
gmoke commented on the blog post Comcast ‘Call From Hell’ Was Standard Procedure According To Leaked Company Memo
According to a former Comcast retention person in an article on slate.com, the way to cut through the BS is to tell the person on the end of the Comcast phone the reason why you’re ending your service is because you’re moving out of the country.
gmoke commented on the blog post Prescription Opioid Makers Are Big Donors to Anti-Marijuana Groups
I’ve heard that prescription drug addiction is much worse than illegal drug addiction. I’ve also heard that pharmaceutical companies make more prescription drugs than necessary to feed addicts and their habits. It’s all figured into the bottom line.
I could be wrong but my super-cynicism sense tells me that something’s fishy in the prescription drug supply.
gmoke commented on the blog post CIA Whistleblower John Kiriakou Advocates for Prison Sentencing Reform in New ‘Letter from Loretto’
US is 25% of the world in most things. Last time I looked, we still produced about 26% of the goods and services too but that was a few years ago.
Still, we’re #1!!!!! in people in prison and #1!!!! in cost of healthcare. USA USA USA USA!!!!
Laura Gottesdiener is great. Seen her on CSPAN2 and she takes no prisoners. May she continue to do such fine work for a long, long time.
There’s a global change in real estate which I haven’t seen much commentary on. I noticed it first when I saw an article about people in expensive neighborhoods of London complaining about the Russian and Arab plutocrats buying up property to live in for a month a year, hollowing out what once were viable communities. [...]
gmoke commented on the diary post Saturday Art: Influential Authors: Alexandre Dumas (Pére) by dakine01.
1988 French miniseries of The Count of Monte Cristo with Gerard Depardieu is available on youtube: https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=q0avimcX_7k
You can use the “CC” or closed caption button to get subtitles for the French. Dumas pere and fils are both worth reading. Dumas grandpere was a general under Napoleon and an interesting figure in his own right.
If you look at the national or international level, the politics is currently impossible. If you look at the state and municipal levels, the politics is eminently practical. Couch the debate in terms of emergency preparedness, resilience, and job creation and you have a winning strategy, maybe even in those Southern states where the legislature is trying to make sea level rise illegal, the King Canute statute.
There is also the possibility that the price reductions in solar electricity and other renewables may make a lot of those fossil fuels irrelevant and uneconomical. Something like 90% of all the new generating capacity installed in the US this year has been renewables.
It would be nice to have a price on carbon but that’s not gonna happen any time soon and the current IPCC “social cost of carbon” is a very, very sketchy $42 per ton, especially when the range of that price goes from around $2 to over $200 per ton depending upon what study is being used.
gmoke commented on the diary post Saturday Art: Influential Authors: Robert B. Parker by dakine01.
Story I heard was that Parker wrote Sunny Randall as a character for Helen Hunt to play. Parker is a good craftsman. All his books are readable and worthwhile, although I feel the last few Spensers were more than a little formulaic.
Recently read some of the early and unfinished works of Ms Austen. She certainly had an unsentimental view of human nature and a true eye for the underlying reality of human society. Lady Susan is a thoroughly mercenary manipulator and the quote from Sanditon would probably make Gary Becker and the whaaambulance billionaires go apoplectic:
_Lady Susan/The Watsons/Sanditon_ by Jane Austen
NY: Penguin Books, 1974
(90) My dear Alicia, of what a mistake were you guilty in marrying a man of his age! – just old enough to be formal, ungovernable and to have the gout – too old to be agreeable, and too young to die.
(189) But she [Lady Denham] is very, very mean. – I can see no good in her. – Poor Miss Brereton! – And she makes everybody mean about her. – This poor Sir Edward and his sister, – how far nature meant them to be respectable I cannot tell, – but they are _obliged_ to be mean in their servility to her. – And I am mean too, in giving her my attention, with the appearance of coinciding with her. – Thus it is, when rich people are sordid.
gmoke wrote a new diary post: Sustainable Development and Climate Change: 2 Free Online Courses
I’d like to participate in an ongoing on and off line brainstorm using Buckminster Fuller’s World Game design criteria, “How can we make the world work for 100 percent of humanity in the shortest possible time through spontaneous cooperation without ecological damage or disadvantage to anyone?” and one of Bill McDonough’s Ecological Design Principles, “Use [...]
gmoke commented on the diary post The Campaign Against Net Metering: ALEC and Utility Interests’ Next Attack on Clean Energy Surfaces in Arizona by Gabe Elsner.
The second largest utility in Germany, RWE, says, “…we will position ourselves as a project enabler and operator, and system integrator of renewables.” http://www.energypost.eu/index.php/exclusive-rwe-sheds-old-business-model-embraces-energy-transition/ http://www.greentechmedia.com/articles/read/germanys-largest-utility-shifts-strategy-saying-solar-will-threaten-the-com RWE is based in Essen, Germany and provides 50,000 MW of electricity generated from coal, oil, and gas-fired plants to 24 million customers throughout Europe.
“The guiding principle is ‘from volume [...]
gmoke commented on the blog post Kerry Washington To Host SNL Amid Cast Controversy
“Known for her Coneheads sketches and Weekend Update anchoring, [Jane] Curtin said that the women writers on the show were often unable to contribute their work thanks to sabotage by the show’s men. Especially breakout star John Belushi.
“‘Their battles were constant. They were working against John, who said women are just fundamentally not funny,’ Curtin said. ‘So you’d go to a table read, and if a woman writer had written a piece for John, he would not read it in his full voice. He felt as though it was his duty to sabotage pieces written by women.’”
SNL from the very beginning was tough on women. It also has been tough on non-white people.
Should they have more diversity in their on-air (and backstage) staff. Sure.
But, fundamentally, they should learn how to be funny. Right now they are playing not even second fiddle but third oboe to Stewart and Colbert.
Saw part of “56 Up” on PBS this week and was surprised to hear the vitriol at the Thatcher years. These people are my near contemporaries from across the pond and they clearly feel the ground shifted away from them with Thatcher the way I here in the US felt it move the same way [...]
gmoke commented on the blog post FDL Book Salon Welcomes Dr. Dickson Despommier, The Vertical Farm: Feeding the World in the 21st Century
“During the recent decade or more, thousands of the “irate minority” (urban farmers, locavores, small organic farmers, co-op growers, independent organic grocers, local restaurateurs, non-for profits) began challenging the food system in many different ways.”
“The recent decade or more….” I’ve been personally involved in local agriculture, the urban/rural coalition, community gardening, the resurgence of farmers’ markets since the mid-1970s as have thousands and thousands others. Please, please, please, learn this history. It’s important. Too many great men and women have worked too hard to be forgotten. Here in MA, Ed Cooper, E Forrest Hallett, Bill McElwaine, and others are gone but not forgotten. Mel King, Charlotte Kahn, Greg Watson, and many others are not and still blazing a trail towards a new conception of food and agriculture.
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