Vaclav Smil, Avata
I hasnt planned to get the $2 bootleg , until I saw this kunstler review
By James Howard Kunstler
on December 21, 2009 7:05 AM
As the end-credits rolled for James Cameron's new movie, Avatar, the audience burst into rowdy applause. It seemed to me that they were applauding the sheer computerized dazzlement of the show -- but in the story itself they had just watched the US suffer a humiliating defeat on a distant planet. In the final frames, American soldiers and the corporate executives they had failed to protect were shown lined up as prisoners-of-war about to embark on a death march.
More to the point, the depiction of our national character through the whole course of the film was of a thuggish, cruel, cynical, stupid, detestable, and totally corrupt people bent on the complete destruction of nature. Nice.
the movie 2012 was so bad it seemed like aconspiracy to prevent any possible movie about collapse. But "the Road" (not seen) is apparently rather doomer-pornish
otoh i rather enjoyed district 9 - Somehow an Ironic pastiche of a schlock formula can make for great drama. Wasnt JL Godards best stuff an IP of 40s American gangster genre?
Climate change now moot as USA consumption dives??
damned if i know, I will run out of steam just before the crash. I had vaguely thought about being around for the 13th Baktun in 2012, but looks like i will miss it by that much.
all the carbo/acetyl cysteine wull not another day pay.
what will collapse look like? - I came to think, like nothing much - because the Statistics will vanish or lie - ie "10% unemployment" is as high a figure as we'll ever see
- nobody here in RP even bothers to scoff when the TV says 9.7% or whatever.
that Mexican Carlos Slim Helú now owns the NYTimes- they still manage a gentle ribbing...
but newspapers and TV are basically over, so all we will see are incoherent scenes of chaos which might be food riots, shot on somebodies cll phone.
The great days of Blogs are also over, the great anti-warbloggers mostly burned out, or dead from mysterious illnesses. no-one will ever know who dies when,...... without energy, all those UN statisticians will be left with handouts from Exon/Shell which will say "We have always been at war with ..." J E Cohens reviev in NYRB of V. Smil "the Next 50 Years" (see below) says
"I.T. can increase global consciousness of those who are starving and victims of violence."
- an odd ejaculation.. round here I.T. is used for shoot-an-arab video games, and sex-chats. the shoot-em-ups transit smoothly to jobs with the USA military/KEllogBrown&Riooit, which will be in some dixie state in an air-conditioned container directing robot bombs onto groups of Paki children. not actual global consciousness
NYRB 14Sep 2009 a great issue
Smil the ultimate numbers man, has a new book,
see the snarkey review in NYRB classic issue
nybooks sep 09
VS is one of my heroes, despite the fact that he is tepid on Peak Oil and Climate Change.
Also against him: he seems to have moved from tepid to hot in his enthusiasm for Nuclear power
Hes just so good on numbers... His (c)2003 Energy at the Crossroads is full of great numbers. Some surely outdated now - written just after 11Sep01
VS is smug and gleeful about how Chinas coal production dipped in the 90s , I suspect it is on the up now.
VS is glum about biomass as an energy source. He has written books on Biomass, Haber nitrogen,Feeding the world,
Heres a factoid for paranoids: on
Harber-Bosh energy VS says
the early BASF process took 100GJ/t ,
the recent Kellog Brown and Root natural gas process takesd 26Gj/t
- theres a couple of Corporation names high in the lists of Infamy, who it turns out are feeding us
( see Pynchon IG Farben, and Iraq II )
VS likes to remind us that 2/3 of the protein N in a Chinese girls body comes from Industry - KBR it seems...
[GJ/t = Giga Joule per ton G= 10^9]
I'm often amazed at the ignorance ...to be continued
What Energy / Sustainability books would you recommend? (Open thread)
JAN 3, 2010 -- As I write, the world is falling apart. Military forces from all major powers are flooding the Gulf of Aden, using piracy and terrorism as a pretext. This is all jockeying in anticipation of a major, and possibly total, war in and around the Persian Gulf -- where 60% of the planet's known oil is. Pakistan is imploding. Within days it will face a "worst possible" energy crisis
coccolithophores over the Chatham rise
Mayon not now expected to blow
Ancient Amazon Cities Found; Were Vast Urban Network
for National Geographic News
August 28, 2008
Dozens of ancient, densely packed, towns, villages, and hamlets arranged in an organized pattern have been mapped in the Brazilian Amazon, anthropologists announced today.
The finding suggests that vast swathes of "pristine" rain forest may actually have been sophisticated urban landscapes prior to the arrival of European colonists.
"It is very different from what we might expect using certain classic models of urbanism," noted study co-author Michael Heckenberger, an anthropologist at the University of Florida in Gainesville.
The Tanezrouft Basin, in south-central Algeria, is one of the most desolate parts of the Sahara, and is sometimes called the land of terror.