The Invention that Could Eat Us, and the Invention that Could Save Us — by NormanB (“Deviations from the Norm”)
(That was Jerry Lacroix and Edgar Winter, knowing 41 years ago we were on the brink, and screaming about it. Now, are you going to do something about it or not?!)
I’ve always liked inventions. I’ve been close to some great and terrible ones. My cousin-in-law Tom Carver invented the first Nuclear-Powered device, the Atomic Clock (which did not require splitting any atoms). His clock, built in 1952, is still running. His “Peaceful Atom,” though, did lead to Nuclear Power plants … Yankee Rowe … Three Mile Island … Chernobyl …. Fuk U Shima. And I helped inventor Tom Burney work on a high-speed skyscraper fire escape that could have saved hundreds of lives in the twin towers on 9/11, if it had been implemented; but don’t read about it now. http://my.firedoglake.com/normanb/2012/09/12/tom-burneys-high-speed-skyscraper-fire-escape-could-have-saved-hundreds-of-lives-on-september-11-2001/
Huey Long, still variously revered and reviled all these 77 years after his Assassination, famously asked: If money is the problem, then why don’t we just print up a bunch of it for everybody and distribute it? Well, you know what they do to people who ask things like that.
Money is an invention. And now we are told that everything we care about must downsized because there is not enough money. Poor people must be sacrificed because there is not enough money. But most people in this country are poor. In an Election, the Poor would win by a landslide. An interesting pie chart a few days ago here at FireDogLake.com showed that 54% of the US population is Poor, while just 30% are in the Middle Class. Another 15% make up the Upper Middle Class, and that just leaves The 1%, the “Super Rich,” as Ralph Nader calls them.
So, a much more appropriate term for the “Middle” Class would be the “Well Off.” Indeed, most of them are quite wealthy compared to most of the Poor. Like in 1929, the large bankers have called back their markers, and, just like in 1929, it’s causing an economic collapse. Because we are emotionally tied to this invention, this mental construct: Money. But if we are willing to abandon our current version of money, we can have a different invention that doesn’t eat us.
So, to belabor the obvious, it is stupid and foolish to use an invention that eats the user. As long as the devouring is avoidable, avoid it. It’s stupid and foolish, and wrong. And insane – suicidal. Kind of reminds you of our climate predicament, doesn’t it?
Have you been keeping up? The world Climate Summit is happening in Oil-rich/filthy-rich Qatar, which has the highest Greenhouse Gas emissions per person of any country on the planet. A poet there was just sentenced to life in prison for insulting the Prime Minister. That’s where Al Jazeera news comes from.
There were 19 named Atlantic Ocean Hurricanes and Tropical Storms this year. Having that many has happened in only 5 years in history: 1933, 2005, 2010, 2011, and 2012. Lately, each year, too late in the season, a giant storm heads for New York and New England (way too far North).
Superstorm Sandy that just hit New York City was the largest hurricane in history. http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/List_of_Atlantic_hurricane_records#Largest_in_diameter Today the Philippines was hit by the most Southerly typhoon in history. Typhoon Bopha has killed at least 272 people there so far.
2011 was the world’s highest year ever for CO2 emissions – but this year (2012) is expected to top it. Superstorms of new character on paths previously thought bizarre are indeed being caused by Global Warming, as was forecast by the climate models decades ago.
Yesterday, scientists at the Climate Summit announced that we are on track to raise our global temperature six degrees Celsius – that’s 11 degrees Fahrenheit. Anthropomorphic Global Warming is caused by emissions of a few specific chemicals; and clean alternatives already exist to ALL of those emission sources.
Human-inflicted Global Warming is caused by emissions of Carbon Soot, and six specific Greenhouse Gases, along with Freons and related chemicals that originated in the DuPont labs.
President Obama is the main stumbling block to progress and accord at the Climate Summit: He says that the US has already met its goals. So the other high-emissions countries now say that they too will do nothing to change course, having already met their goals. Barack Obama, by the way, condemned the Kyoto Accords long ago, long before he was President.
Our current President ran against John McCain and Sarah Palin in 2008, then took up Sarah Palin’s call to “Drill Baby Drill” – but on steroids – attacking our country’s and our continent’s actual physical structural integrity with onshore and offshore drilling (and not using the world’s safest or cleanest drilling equipment[!]). He called for “Clean” Coal and for poisoning drinking water with Fracking in his acceptance speech for the Democratic nomination.
Obama said, in the Presidential Debate, that unlike Mitt Romney, he would never block a dirty Coal plant from operating. Back in 2009, in his first week in office, Obama appeared on a television commercial for Clean Coal, which doesn’t even exist. And everybody knew he was lying when he said it, because a week earlier, the Coen brothers had widely aired a commercial informing the American public that there is no such thing as Clean Coal.
And the current announced US strategy is to continue burning it and other Fossil Fuels like Natural Gas: The Obama plan calls for increasing Oil exploration and drilling steadily every year until 2030, and to then begin to slack off. If they do that, then we shall surely die.
Day before yesterday, a snowflake slowly spiraled close by my eye, and I could see its crystal details. Today I was walking around barefoot and in short sleeves. December in Massachusetts. A Doonesbury cartoon showed out-of-state volunteers driving into Massachusetts during a blizzard last winter, to work for Elizabeth Warren. A nice image, but there were no blizzards in Massachusetts last winter. Not here. There was one on Halloween, and that was it. It snowed a little light snow a couple of days ago; but no blizzard.
A couple of years ago, when billionaire philanthropist Sir Richard Branson offered a $25 million cash prize in his Virgin Earth Challenge, to the inventor who can remove Greenhouse Gases from our atmosphere, I was filled with hope. During the competition, the US Government’s propaganda organ PBS aired a Koch-brother-sponsored climate fraud miniseries recommending that the Oil companies’ motto of “All Of The Above” energy be adopted by our country and the world, and that this Oil company scam will solve our climate problem.
On-air talent for the Koch fake climate show included Van Jones and other denizens of the Obama Administration. On the first show, they had Richard Branson. The announcer pressured him to agree that the All Of The Above strategy would solve our Global Warming crisis. In the politest way he possibly could say it, Branson told him ‘Nice try.’ The competition continues.
Some people are desperate, and grasping at straws. Let’s go for Hybrid, dirty and clean at the same time! Pollution trading. Solar Panels and Wind Farms that secretly emit the worst Greenhouse Gases known. Foolishly fouling food and forests and farms for fuel, that’s the bullshit Biomass and Biofuel frauds. Giving Biomass and Biofuel and Ethanol a bad name. (There are elsewhere excellent examples of Biomass and Biofuel and Ethanol usage, but not in that movement.) And every step of the way: Middlemen padding the bill with their hands in the till. It’s no wonder people are disgusted and discouraged and desperate.
Here’s a list of desperate attempts, and I’ll shoot each one down, if necessary. http://thelistcafe.com/top-10-mega-projects-to-reverse-global-warming 10. Polluting the ocean and ocean bottom by dumping a bunch of iron in it. 9. Carbon capture and storage depends on burning more Fossil Fuels and trying to pull some of the emissions back. 8. Wrapping Greenland in blankets made from Oil products. 7. Moving cold water that is deep in the ocean up to the surface.
6. Kill most of the cows because they fart too much. (Here, the article spreads disinformation by purporting that livestock cause 65% of Nitrous Oxide pollution. In fact, according to the Environmental Protection Agency, soil management [nitrogen fertilizers] cause 68% of the Nitrous Oxide emissions, while manure management causes only 6%. But we do need to manage the poo and burn its Methane emissions for energy.) 5. Atmospheric sulfate infusion: Pollute the atmosphere in a way that somewhat mimics volcanoes’ blocking-out-the-Sun effect. 4. Artificial trees, because real trees were such a failure. 3. Green bombs: Drop trees from airplanes. 2. Dump sea water into the desert. 1. Sun-reflecting shields in outer space. By the way, Nitric Acid is prevalent in rocket fuel, and its manufacture is also one of the leading causes of Nitrous Oxide pollution.
The Virgin Earth Challenge link tells about each of its eleven finalists: The competition is still going on, but no great breakthrough has emerged there yet. (They’re not accepting any more entries.) Three (1-3) of the eleven finalists are dealing in Biochar solutions. Biochar by itself can indeed remove some Carbon from the atmosphere. Whoever succeeds will likely use Biochar, but not by itself. The Biochar method involves working charred wood or other charred biomass into the soil. It requires energy/fuel to char the wood. These three models slowly improve the picture, if done on a massive scale.
One finalist (4) uses bio-energy with Carbon capture and storage, which includes burning more Fossil Fuels. Another five (5-9) use direct air capture, and bury captured Carbon deep in the Earth, but most of it is re-emitted, according even to its proponents. One finalist (10) wants to massively pollute the atmosphere to control the weather. And one (11) advocates grassland restoration – whoever does solve it will certainly do this, and much more too. http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Virgin_Earth_Challenge
They’re saying that it’s going to get so hot, and we’re in so much trouble, and we’re going to be so dead. And so, it looks like we’re in dire straits. But not to me. I mean, I can see the danger, of course. But I can also see a way out, an actual solution. Now, this is going to be hard for some of you to take. If it makes it easier for you to handle, go ahead and assume that what follows is hypothetical, or phantasy, or Performance Art, or as just an exercise in philosophy; because I’m not going to give you the full scientific details now. But try to treat it in your mind as if it’s real.
Because it is real. There is a breakthrough invention. I’m here in Amherst, Massachusetts, a hub of climate science research. And I’m here to tell you that a system which quickly stops and reverses Global Warming has been invented, it’s coming to fruition now. It extracts Carbon Dioxide from the atmosphere. It has been tested and works well. It can extract all of the post-industrial Carbon Dioxide. Bill McKibben’s 350.org is ambitious, compared to what you hear from naysayers and doomsday prophets. But 350 parts per million of Carbon Dioxide in our air is way too much. And right now, we’re at about 400 ppm.
But if we deploy this invention, we can be back at our pre-industrial natural balance of 280 parts per million in about 15 months. Maybe it would be safer to take twice as long, if we weren’t so close to catastrophe already. But with this, we can re-install the polar icecaps in two years. The glaciers will take longer. It will greatly alleviate worldwide drought, because all that extra CO2 that’s warming our planet causes water to evaporate. And the Water Vapor is actually doing more of a job on us now than the CO2, GL0Warm-speaking.
However, when the new system pulls all the Carbon out, that Water Vapor is coming down! With this new invention, we will no longer need to burn Fossil Fuels, because one of its main byproducts is clean fuel. And the more CO2 we “mine” from the atmosphere, the cheaper that clean fuel will get. Conversely, the more Oil is drilled, the less remains in the Earth, and the price goes up. Very soon, we who have the clean fuel will be able to make so much fuel, that we can economically ‘force’ everyone else to switch to cheap clean fuel. They won’t be able to afford to do otherwise.
The Oil companies are going down! I know my readers don’t own Oil stocks, but people who do are going to lose out. People telling you that there’s a 30-year lag if we stop now just don’t know about the invention: Once the CO2 is no longer there, it will no longer have its effect. Its Greenhouse Effect, that is.
There are some other very interesting byproducts from this completely non-polluting system: Nutritious food, and trillions of tons of building materials. Many people are telling you that the manufacturing jobs “are not coming back.” But they don’t know about this invention. Trillions of tons of building materials are worth quadrillions of real dollars in today’s money. And not even one quadrillion dollars even exists on Earth, yet! If the real reason we can’t have clean water or health and safety regulations is because there “isn’t enough money,” well then, here it comes, enough money.
Some of the finest byproducts we’ll get are democracy, freedom, equality, and repayment of the Climate Debt, at least in part. The invention is great, but it takes lots of people to work it. Thousands. Well, if we’re going to remove all of the CO2, then, in fact, millions of people will have to work at it. Do we have an unemployment problem in this country and the world? Not anymore, not if we don’t want to. Under this system, anybody who wants work, or wants to save the planet, can join.