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Forced Responses: Dec 2018

Filed under: — group @ 2 December 2018

A bimonthly thread for discussions on solutions and responses to climate change. For climate science topics, please comment on the Unforced Variations thread.

697 Responses to “Forced Responses: Dec 2018”

  1. 551
    Mr. Know It All says:

    530 – Al Bundy
    On China and the USA: “…But in the last month two or three commenters have been pondering which of the two is the worse influence on the world.”

    531 – nigelj
    “I would say America has better human rights than China, but America has worse foreign affairs in recent decades. Whether Americas broken pseudo democracy is better than Chinas benevolent (so far) dictatorship is an interesting question! Maybe a draw?

    Scandinavia gets a lot of thing right. Good model to emulate.”

    537 – BPL
    “BPL: Tell it to Tibet, you sad, dictator-excusing excuse for a human being.”

    Well said. And it brings up a serious concern about voting in an ultra-liberal government in the USA for the purpose of combating AGW. The concern is that if we elect liberals who want a Scandinavian type system, we will actually get that type system and we will end up weak and defenseless like Scandinavia and most other nations on earth. This world is not utopia – there are bad nations that would love to do bad things.

    If I lived in NZ, Taiwan, Tibet, Scandinavia, the Middle East, South Korea, Japan, Australia, or just about any where in the fairly free world I would be quaking in my boots for fear that the USA would go socialist and become a weak nation. How long would it be before they were overrun by the bullies? Not long. The USA is the only thing standing in their way.

    I would recommend that some adults appear on the D side in the USA, get with some Rs and try to make progress on AGW while shunning and denouncing the radical leftist kooks that the D party has become and which are plastered on the news 24/7/365. I’m talking about Ds who understand my above premise that the USA is the only thing standing between relative freedom and socialist slavery for the entire world; who understand why the founders created this imperfect nation, with our Constitution, which became the greatest nation ever to exist on earth. This is not hollow talk – this is the reality of our world – freedom or socialist slavery and mediocrity. Fight AGW? Excellent goal. Vote in Socialism to achieve it? Why vote to be slaves? Are there no adults in Congress who can work with the other side to make progress?

  2. 552
    Al Bundy says:

    KillingInaction: How long would it be before they were overrun by the bullies?

    AB: I suggest you read a little history. If these “bullies” were to start a war, such as Hitler tried, they’d get stomped by the collective world. Heck, just turning off the trade link, which is necessary when you invade someone, would really hurt the “bully”. I don’t know who’s friends with whom in the Bully Clubhouse, but my guess is that Russia and China aren’t terribly good friends. Tough to take over the world with that dynamic. Putin remembers how Stalin stabbed Hitler in the back. And the Chinese surely don’t see Putin as more honorable than Stalin.

    And then there’s the fact that most of the most powerful militaries are staunchly free. Draw down the USA’s “umbrella”, and the world would do just fine. Seriously, WHO is gonna take on the former British empire and NATO, including the USA as an equal partner with a sane military budget?

    You’re afraid of spiders. That spider is looking at its long term survival. So do despots. As if invading the free world could ever work. Churchill has been absorbed into the psyche, “Never give up. Never give up. Never give up.”

  3. 553
    Al Bundy says:

    Killian: I come here with no attitude, only to learn/educate.

    AB: OK, but now lets incorporate your INwhatevertheletterswere personality type. You have no attitude but it seems that you do. Perhaps everybody could try to accept Killian’s difference as a quirk, and Killian can try to mitigate the quirk. Methinks that if the group acts more or less productively (ie, no magical “if everybody”), then we can create a good tipping point.

  4. 554
    Kevin McKinney says:

    KIA, #551–

    Given that the US currently spends ~3x what China, the next nearest ‘competitor’ does, and close to 10x that of the next 3–Saudi, Russia, and India, in that order, there’s a very long way to go before the US gets anywhere close to “weak and defenseless.”

    I also think that KIA seriously misunderstands Democrats as a group–not to mention the motivations of (presumably) China, whose drive to achieve a pre-eminent position among the nations of the world has nothing to do with socialism, and everything to do with nationalism.

  5. 555

    zebra, #538–

    I wasn’t asking about your purpose in general; I was asking more narrowly about your purpose in prolonging to such an extent the exchange about EVs and necessarily speculative banter about their potential adoption rates. I haven’t really been seeing the connection to the bigger picture for a while; you know what I think and vice versa, at least in a big-picture sort of way. Increasingly minute justifications for one side or the other probably aren’t that productive.

    Though if you feel otherwise, well, I could be wrong. It woulden’t be the first time, after all.

  6. 556
    Al Bundy says:

    Which is why it matters that virtually every automaker today is now manufacturing or (in the case of minors like Subaru) *planning* to manufacture BEVs. That is how they gain the experience and build up the supply chains. Reluctant they may be–visibly are,…

    AB: So, if subsidies are targeted at hybrids the transition would be easy. Instead of having the fleet of mostly hybrids we coulda had, we’ve got a smattering of EVs in a sea of carbon belchers. Instead of corporations with experience in electric propulsion we’ve got companies trying to make a leap across a chasm. And, assuming SCCMC engines are real, the ICE workforce and tools and built-up knowledge continues to be useful.

    ————–

    Kari Okie’s reel: This is not just the rich, who are completely corrupted and dominated by Money.

    AB: Geez. Warren Buffett lives a normal life and his money is going to humanity. His family are heavily and directly involved in humanitarian work, as in doing as opposed to writing a check. His son is a farmer and heavily involved with improving agriculture worldwide.

    The question becomes, “How do we get the rich to see their legacy in a more societal way, as opposed to dynastic”. Raise top taxes to 70% including federal and state, tax capital gains yearly instead of when sold, tax offshore profits when made instead of when brought home, tax inheritances and welfare payments just like everything else. Income is income, regardless if you “earned” it by being born into the right household or “earned it” by gambling in stocks or actually earned it by digging ditches or cleaning toilets.

    But, and this is key, let the rich get away with not paying that 70%. They can pay the regular rate if they engage in societal legacy. There are many possible formats; Buffett’s is one.

    ——-

    Zebra, I was opening a new conversation and thought you and Killian would have good stuff to say.

    ——

    Alan, I don’t have the current mindspace to dig down that rabbit hole. For now I’ll go Executive and treat you as my expert.

    ——-

    BPL, I retract my compliment. It was unfair to convert my expression of ignorance “I’m sure China has their way of warping meritocracy”, into, well, filth. And soldiers’ honor says little about their leaders except the leaders’ limits. But the military does instill limits on the leaders through its culture.

    The culture of honor that permeates the USA’s services is an incredible treasure that the USA is squandering on petty capitalistic wars. To repeat myself, use the military to export the future to stable countries instead of going all whupass on unstable countries.

  7. 557
    nigelj says:

    Zebra says “The thing is, there’s a tendency for you guys to acknowledge the negative factors but downplay their significance, while assuming that all the “good stuff” will occur at the highest possible rate.”

    Possibly, but you do the same thing in the opposite direction. You acknowledge the good stuff, but only barely, and play up all the negative factors then ignore it when people show problems in your views.

    I would never have predicted that almost everyone would be owning smartphones by now.

    The truth on BEV growth is probably somewhere in the middle.

    Dont get me wrong. I like your reality check. Im pretty criticial of people if I think they are being unrealistic.

  8. 558
    nigelj says:

    Mr KIA @551, please note that I said Scandinavia get most things right, not everything right.They have a high standard of living economically and socially, and arguably better overall than America. Norway has higher per capita gdp than America, and Sweden and the others are pretty close, and have better social statistics across the board. Admittedly they could spend more on the military.

    https://www.cia.gov/library/publications/the-world-factbook/rankorder/2004rank.html

    You seem to think China wants to invade the world. Meh. Over the last few decades it has been America doing most of the invading, and generally sticking their nose in, mostly in the wrong places. I actually think you have more to fear from Russia.

  9. 559
    nigelj says:

    alan2102 @544, good points but you are a bit one sided! China has huge emerging inequality for example.I would say neither America or China can take the moral highground overall, if all things are considered, so human rights, racism and bigotry, poverty, aggressive foreign policies, efforts to improve standard of living, hypocrisy, trade, etc. I would score them both 6/10.

  10. 560
    nigelj says:

    Zebra “Al, my only mention of eating meat was when I asked, metaphorically and as an example, whether it would be “OK to eat meat if there was a stable global population of 300,000 million humans”.My point having been that there would be plenty of grasslands, which everyone thinks is very very good. It would sequester CO2, and there would be bison, and perhaps some wild genetically engineered cattle that would be nice and fatty, as if they had been fed corn while immobilized in pens. No methane burps.”

    Yes correct, but what do we do in the interim period before we get there? It’s likely to be about 150 years, and I think we are probably going to have to at least reduce meat consumption until the promised land arrives.

    In fact there are many good reasons to reduce meat consumption, eg: too much red meat is not so healthy according to the experts. I eat a lot of fish.

    You are so one dimensional at times.

  11. 561
    Al Bundy says:

    Mr FatalInaction,

    Oh yeah, I forgot groceries at the commissary and everything else at the exchange. When given the choice servicefolks usually choose Socialism in their personal life.

    Your comment about “defenseless” Scandinavia seems contrived. After all, didn’t Finland wipe the floor with the USSR until they succumbed from choking on the stench of rotting Soviets? Explain how Finland is more defenseless today.

  12. 562
    Carrie says:

    551 Mr. Knows Nothing At All says: “This world is not utopia – there are bad nations that would love to do bad things.”

    True – mark the USA down as bad nation #1 …. light years second place.

    “any where in the fairly free world” only need defense because of the USA’s arrogance, belligerence and inheritable Control Freak Paranoid Delusional state of mind of TPTB. They should be scared. On that point they are being quite rational.

    As to the rest of the country, KIA included, they don’t have a clue about the world and have no say in what the USA does and doesn’t do in their name. Please enough of the psychobabble about ‘socialism’ for crying out loud. America is a shit hole place to live in. Get a real life – emigrate to a decent nation. My god the list is so long of what’s wrong with America where would one start?

  13. 563
    carrie says:

    Humans are the only species that don’t care about their own children
    with David Suzuki. He knows all the myths behind economic memes. It pretty simple really.
    https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=ktnAMTmgOX0&t=1525s

  14. 564
    carrie says:

    My expert reference on America. Nails it! :-)
    https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=KLODGhEyLvk

  15. 565
    Al Bundy says:

    Kevin: Yes, if by ICE you actually mean the engines themselves.

    AB: Yes and no. A car or truck goes through prototypes where all the suppliers’ parts are essentially tested to make sure it all works together. It NEVER does. Repeat. Nope. Repeat. Closer… Repeat. I think that’s what killed(?) Elio.

    You get the idea. It is way easier to sell a working system intact and redesign from scratch. Seriously, an old-fashioned dino-burner design that’s been cobbled up to hybrid, tribrid, or EV is not going to be a good competitor. Batteries are heavy. Structure, center of gravity, and all that. But existing vehicles can be converted because the sunk cost is high and the competitive expectations are low. The only one you need to convince is Bubba and his beloved SUV.

    ———

    Zebra: What I see in the data, and the realities of economics and geopolitics, is more like 2100 as a point where ICE might really become a minimal source for CO2.

    AB: The best is the enemy of the good. All of your concerns go away if you release your erroneous axiom: “ICEs are satanic”. (Of course I hyperbolize) Instead of dumping them in the bin, bring them into the 21st century. I offered to enlighten you, to send you the design, and you you choose to cling tightly to your axiom rather than learn enough so that you can form an educated opinion. Why?

  16. 566

    a 542: It is possible that China is guilty of human rights abuses against the Uighurs in Xinjiang. POSSIBLE. But unlikely. It is probably just another lie

    BPL: It has been recorded by factual news outlets. It’s a lie like global warming is a lie.

    China is doing wonderful things with renewable energy, but they are occupying Tibet and filling it with ethnic Han settlers, they have millions of political and religious dissidents in labor camps, they censor the internet, and their elections are a farce. This is the same regime that murdered 60 million of its own people in the 20th century. Your readiness to defend an ugly dictatorship does you no credit.

  17. 567

    a 544: China’s human rights record is quite spectacular.

    BPL: That’s hard to reconcile with 30 million dead in mass executions and labor camps and another 30 million dead in the “Great Leap Forward.” Not to mention secret police and a system of labor camps which still exists, plus little tidbits like invading and occupying Tibert and shooting Falun Gong members and Christians and Muslims in the head. Why are you carrying China’s water lately? Are you a Communist yourself?

  18. 568

    c 546: To quote an expert: Physician heal thyself!

    BPL: To quote another expert: Bite me.

  19. 569

    a 547: Also, the *tu quoque* accusation is overused and used inappropriately, like *ad hominem*, very often in situations where there is no fallacy at all, but simply a statement of a relevant contrasting fact, perhaps pertaining to an individual involved in the debate.

    BPL: It was exactly appropriate. Bundy’s jackass assumption was that because I opposed concentration camps in China, that somehow meant I had to approve of concentration camps in the US. It might, you know, be CONCENTRATION CAMPS

  20. 570

    a 547: Also, the *tu quoque* accusation is overused and used inappropriately, like *ad hominem*, very often in situations where there is no fallacy at all, but simply a statement of a relevant contrasting fact, perhaps pertaining to an individual involved in the debate.

    BPL: It was exactly appropriate. Bundy’s silly assertion was that because I opposed concentration camps in China, it somehow meant I had to support concentration camps in America. It might, you know, be CONCENTRATION CAMPS I am opposed to, whether Chinese, American, or Nazi. Did that thought ever enter your empty head?

  21. 571
    Al Bundy says:

    Zebra: bison, and perhaps some wild genetically engineered cattle that would be nice and fatty, as if they had been fed corn while immobilized in pens. No methane burps.

    AB: I don’t know much about bison and grass-fed cow re methane. Are you saying that ruminants’ methane burps cease to be a problem?

    I’ve often speculated about domesticating bison. Pick small and bottom-of-the-pecking-order. I’m sure somebody’s tried it. Perhaps it takes too long for anyone but a government to get it done.

  22. 572
    Lalit says:

    DEFINITION OF GREENHOUSE EFFECT
    The greenhouse effect is a natural phenomenon, which helps to keep the earth’s surface warm and that is why life on earth is possible.

    What are Greenhouse Gases?(s)

  23. 573
    alan2102 says:

    Zebra #548: “The thing is, there’s a tendency for you guys to acknowledge the negative factors but downplay their significance, while assuming that all the “good stuff” will occur at the highest possible rate.”

    True enough. We do have that tendency, partly informed by the long history of explosive adoption of new technologies. (Yes, I know that autos are different; much bigger; more resistance to change.) So, we’ll see. Maybe you are correct. We’ll just have to wait and see.

    Or undertake ecosocialistic reconstruction of the U.S. and the world…
    https://climateandcapitalism.com
    https://climateandcapitalism.com/2018/12/19/why-ecosocialism-a-discussion-of-the-case-for-a-red-green-future/
    https://climateandcapitalism.com/2017/11/10/essential-books-on-marxism-and-ecology/

    But that’s a young man’s job. I’m too old.

  24. 574
    nigelj says:

    Al Bundy says “The best is the enemy of the good. All of your concerns go away if you release your erroneous axiom: “ICEs are satanic”. (Of course I hyperbolize) Instead of dumping them in the bin, bring them into the 21st century. I offered to enlighten you, to send you the design”

    True, and we know there is realistic potential to significantly increase fuel efficiency, and it should obviously be promoted. But its one of those things that have to be forced by governments, and so we get into the big government v small government debate (which seems utterly mindless to me) but it is a big impediment to better fuel efficiency.

    However there is another reality you are possibly not considering. I read an article recently by one of the oil companies, cant remember which, and even they were saying there is only 50 years of oil left. So how much life is really left in the ICE?

    And no matter how we spin the issue, even efficient ICE cars and Hybrids emit significant CO2. I think their days are numbered.

  25. 575
    nigelj says:

    What would the world do without America? OMG we just wouldn’t cope at all! (sarc) A fine country, lovely people one on one, but awful politics.

  26. 576
    alan2102 says:

    #559 nigelj: “alan2102 @544, good points but you are a bit one sided!”

    Indeed I am, and for good reason: to act as a (tiny, one-man) counter to the tidal mass of Sinophobic/Orientalistic rubbish that Westerners, and especially Americans, have been exposed to from birth, and for generations. The “yellow peril”, and all that. It runs so deep that it is almost genetic.

  27. 577
    Al Bundy says:

    BPL,

    Get control of your almygdala.You’re spouting illogical bile, which is a sure sign. I mean, channeling Joe McCarthy?! “Are you a communist yourself”

    And to say that I accuse you of approving of USA mistreatment of refugees is sheer almygdala-generated fantasy. It takes quite a leap to get from Americans fighting their own government to BPL cheering.

    I called you farsighted, as in not registering the mistreatment in the same framework, essentially of bias-driven blindness.

    As Alan(?) said, the USA puts more people in cages per capita by a huge margin. And the USA regularly engages in prolonged torture. They torture people for decades. As a humanitarian you know the UN has ruled that solitary confinement for over two weeks is torture.

    You owe me a public apology. Now we’ll see if you’re honorable.

  28. 578
    alan2102 says:

    Will China Save the Planet? — title of new book by Barbara Finamore

    https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=mwPcf3s3g7s
    Barbara Finamore discusses clean energy in China
    CGTN America
    Published on Nov 20, 2018

    https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=YUyfgcUCdvg
    Barbara Finamore: Will China Save the Planet?
    National Committee on U.S.-China Relations
    Published on Dec 3, 2018
    As the world’s largest emitter of carbon dioxide per capita, the full withdrawal of the U.S. from the Paris Agreement has cast doubt on the ability of the international community to combat climate change successfully, and was seen by many as a full retreat of American leadership. However, in a new book, Will China Save the Planet? author Barbara Finamore explains that under Xi Jinping, China has emerged as the leader in environmental governance, and has the potential to fill the void left by the United States.
    On November 28, Ms. Finamore discussed her book, and explored how China overcame internal obstacles to transform itself into a pioneer in the clean energy revolution.

    https://www.nrdc.org/experts/barbara-finamore/will-china-save-planet
    Will China Save the Planet?
    November 28, 2018 Barbara Finamore
    snip
    In my new book, Will China Save The Planet?, I explore one key difference in how the governments of the two nations are addressing the issue. While the United States under President Trump has shamefully stalled on the very real climate progress that was made during the Obama administration, China has owned up to its oversize role in putting greenhouse gases into the earth’s atmosphere. Accordingly, it has committed itself to play an oversize role in slowing the CO2 juggernaut and establishing the groundwork for a 21st-century clean-energy economy.
    China, in other words, understands that it has the potential to fill the leadership vacuum created by the United States’ deplorable abdication on climate and to move the needle on curbing greenhouse gases and promoting clean energy
    snip
    as it has worked to curtail its coal consumption, China has invested massively in renewable energy, and it currently sits atop the global leaderboard in solar and wind installed capacity. Last year, China added more solar photovoltaic capacity than did the rest of the world’s nations combined; if it meets its 2020 targets, it will by then have installed five times the solar capacity than the United States could boast in 2017. Another way of looking at the difference between China’s approach and our own country’s: For every dollar that the United States invested in renewable energy last year, China invested three. Last year it spent $126 billion. By 2020, it will have spent another $360 billion. And by 2030 – just a dozen years from now – it will have spent fully $6 trillion on solar, wind, and other forms of clean energy. That’s the same year, by the way, that some China watchers are predicting the country will have phased out internal combustion engines in its newly produced vehicles…. the speed and vigor with which the country is investing in electric vehicles is staggering, and highly suggestive of an impending paradigm shift, one with global implications. China recently overtook the United States as the world’s largest market for electric vehicles, accounting for nearly half of the global total in 2017. It’s currently home to 40 percent of the world’s electric cars and 99 percent of all electric buses.
    snip
    right now, China’s clean energy leadership – and the way its massive investments are causing renewable energy prices to plummet worldwide, transforming our global energy system – is cause for hope.

  29. 579
    nigelj says:

    Speaking of ruminants methane burps: “Discovery that could help save the world – new diet to make cows burp less methane”

    https://www.stuff.co.nz/business/farming/105185884/dutch-company-hopes-to-pilot-methane-reduction-compound-in-new-zealand

  30. 580
    nigelj says:

    Alan 2102 @516, good on you, and you have my support. I loathe racism / xenophibia / bigotry. We get a lot of chinese immigrants NZ, and we haven’t had any significant problems.

    I tend to like to try to be a bit nuanced and balanced when commenting on issues. Its my little one man band counter to all the one sided and emotive rhetoric.

  31. 581
    alan2102 says:

    #570 Barton Paul Levenson: “Bundy’s silly assertion was that because I opposed concentration camps in China, it somehow meant I had to support concentration camps in America.”

    No, that was NOT his assertion.

  32. 582
    alan2102 says:

    Zebra #549: “nobody likes to think about the proposed population scenario because it takes away all the problems for which they have pet solutions.”

    Yes, dreamy impossible pet solutions are a big waste of time. Like the dreamy impossible pet “solution” of reducing the global population to 300 million.

    Brief summary of why “overpopulation” hand-wringing is wrong in every way:
    https://climateandcapitalism.com/2009/05/30/population-control-10-reasons-why-its-the-wrong-answer/

    Correction: I should not say “impossible”. Malthusians may yet get their dreamy vision of a low-population world. After a nuclear war, and a few years of nuclear winter, there would likely be only a few hundred million survivors, if that many.

    https://www.dailymail.co.uk/news/article-5572567/Russian-former-general-warns-world-brink-war.html
    3 April 2018
    The world is on the brink of ‘the last war in the history of mankind’, warns Russian ex-general, as tensions between Putin and the West intensify

    Interview with General Buzhinskiy:
    https://www.channel4.com/news/evgeny-buzhinskiy-its-an-illusion-that-the-military-conflict-between-the-united-states-and-russia-can-be-controlled

    https://www.ctvnews.ca/world/putin-issues-chilling-warning-on-rising-nuclear-war-threat-1.4225799
    December 20, 2018
    MOSCOW — Russian President Vladimir Putin issued a chilling warning Thursday `about the rising threat of a nuclear war

    https://www.nytimes.com/2018/02/08/magazine/daniel-ellsberg-thinks-were-in-denial-about-nuclear-war.html
    Daniel Ellsberg Thinks We’re in Denial About Nuclear War
    Interview by Dan Amira
    Feb. 8, 2018

    https://www.newsweek.com/2018/05/11/daniel-ellsberg-criminally-insane-us-nuclear-program-and-war-north-korea-908779.html
    Daniel Ellsberg Warns of ‘No Survivors’ if U.S. Goes to War With ‘Criminally Insane’ Nuclear Weapons
    BY NINA BURLEIGH ON 5/3/18

    https://original.antiwar.com/john-v-walsh/2019/01/17/dismantling-the-doomsday-machines/
    Dismantling the Doomsday Machines
    by John V. Walsh Posted on January 18, 2019

  33. 583
    Killian says:

    Re #536 Al Bundy said Killian and Zebra,

    This Guardian article talks about various guesstimates of the required meat reduction needed to, well, “prevent bad things” will do, eh?

    I think articles like that are the result of reading the wrong materials. If the writer and interviewee had paid more attention to Tainter, they’d be more inclined to make things simpler, not more complex with rules and regulations, etc. I also think they would know better what to do if they studied permaculture. A permaculturally-designed home or village is going to have a fairly limited supply of meat as a herd of cattle and a kitchen garden is not a balanced system. People will only eat 1. what is needed and 2. what is available. With a kitchen garden and the rest of the place essentially a food forest, there would be far more non-meat food available than meat, thus a nicely balanced food system.

    A quick aside on health: It’s fairly clear now that the issue of meat-based illness is actually a sugar and contaminants issue, primarily. Replace sweets with honey and fruits, et voila.

    Once again, simplification solves all the problems.

    Again, I think Scott is right. Grass and herd animals evolved together. Is the Guardian article making the error of assumed linearity? There were an awful lot of bison way back when.

    The bison population exploded after the indigenous pandemics caused by European contact took out the apex predator – and only important predator for the bison – the First Nations. I forget the number, but the estimate of pre-holocaust was pretty small. Same would have been true for deer, etc.

    Flexitarian? It’s called typical of balanced systems and preindustrial systems. I.e., omnivore.

  34. 584

    AB 552: Putin remembers how Stalin stabbed Hitler in the back.

    BPL: That was the other way around. In 1941 Hitler invaded the USSR despite their non-aggression pact.

  35. 585

    a 581: #570 Barton Paul Levenson: “Bundy’s silly assertion was that because I opposed concentration camps in China, it somehow meant I had to support concentration camps in America.”

    No, that was NOT his assertion.

    BPL: Then why bring up Trump’s camps at all? You or flxible said China had a good human rights record. I pointed out the obvious exception. Bundy brought up the camps bordering Mexico. What POSSIBLE other point could he have had? I can’t think of one.

  36. 586
    zebra says:

    #582 alan2102,

    See, you just made my point.

    I was willing, able, and happy to explore the EV thing with you guys. I don’t say “you can’t possibly have EV” as a way to push some other solution; I try to get into the details to produce a realistic time frame… for a transition I have supported since before anyone thought it was possible. The dialog helps with developing understanding and new ideas for how we might make it go faster.

    But, you, and Kevin, and your referenced group, and most everyone else, does what you acknowledged above– you optimistically focus on your solution, instead of following the basic principle in designing critical systems, which is to recognize that bad things happen, as well as good things. There’s a reason we put two engines on airliners, despite the fact that jet engines are extremely reliable.

    If the harm to humans of climate change is something you think is critically important to minimize, then you can’t rely on “if only”, or as Al says “if everybody”. Gosh, “if everybody” were kumbaya in agreement, we wouldn’t be in this pickle, would we?

    So, as I have explained to Kevin, I propose using my question the way we use boundary and initial values in physics, to help understand the factors influencing what happens “in between”.

    But, as I also have said, that people are unwilling to discuss the topic, reveals a lot about what makes them uncomfortable. You seem convinced that “evil capitalists” are going to exist and have the same powers no matter what the circumstance. Sounds more like an emotional response than the result of scientific reasoning.

    If there were a stable global population of 300 million humans, would people burn fossil fuels for energy, and if they did, would it be at the same per capita rate?

    Not a hard question.

  37. 587
    alan2102 says:

    [edit – disagreements are fine but the level of Sino-Philia here is off the charts. This is not the place. Please agree to disagree and move on]

  38. 588
    flxible says:

    No, not a hard question.
    There has never been a stable human population of 300 million, and short of some cataclysmic event that would change the entire paradigm of human existence, there never will be, so there is unlikely to be anything recognizable left for us to discuss.

    “The measure of life is change, the measure of intelligence is the ability to adapt to change.”

    Now drop the non-scientific fantasies about what might happen “in between” and get on with the theme of the comment thread> solutions and responses to climate change.

    Do you use an electric or combustion vehicle or none?

    How is the energy you use generated?

    How much fossil energy do you use?

    Where does your food come from?

    Do you have children and grandchildren?

  39. 589
    alan2102 says:

    #566 Barton Paul Levenson: “Your readiness to defend an ugly dictatorship does you no credit.”

    It does YOU no credit that you are so hysterical in attacking the only nation on earth that has lifted a billion out of poverty, dramatically improving living conditions and life expectancy for all of them, and is working diligently to replicate that astonishing accomplishment across the rest of Eurasia and Africa, AND, on top of all that, is working diligently to green-ify and sustainable-ize its industries and economy, indeed making much greater effort in sum than any other nation on the planet. Which, I might add, is something that OUGHT NOT fall to them, since they have been busy clawing their way up from impoverished feudal misery, (in part caused by the West’s behavior in the 19th century), and they are the last place that should be expected to take global responsibility and leadership in decarbonizing and green-izing. That responsibility and leadership obviously should be taken by the wealthy countries, primarily the U.S., who can easily afford it. Yet China is taking it on, WITHOUT COMPLAINT, WITHOUT ACRIMONY, even though complaint and acrimony would be richly deserved. China’s character and morality, diligence, forbearance, dedication to the good and right, and planetary consciousness is absolutely EXEMPLARY, and for you, BPL, or anyone — especially one with pretensions to climate awareness — to fail to recognize it is irresponsible in the extreme, even despicable.

    It is perfectly clear, and now undeniable, that if this sorry-ass world has a snowball’s chance of a better future, then China will be the nation that leads us into it. They are not perfect by a long shot, they have more than their share of problems and shortcomings, but DAMN if we’ve ever seen — in history — a nation more world-centric, more humane, more fair-minded, more devoted to inclusive win-win prosperity, and more devoted to green development, not to mention more efficiently-run. They announce in advance what they are going to do in their 5-year plans, such as reducing the carbon intensity of their economy by xyz%, or increasing their forested areas by xyz% *, and then they DO IT, often exceeding their own projections. This kind of accountability and world-centric diligence, industry and efficiency, is just incredible, unmatched in the world and in history.

    To dismiss them as an “ugly dictatorship” is a perversion, portraying the manifestly good as evil. If there were a Satan, he would denounce the world’s last best hope with a filthy lie, just as BPL does. But BPL reflects the prevailing view in these parts (USA), and as such, the world is probably doomed. There are at least 100 million credulous, brainwashed, chauvinistic, socialism-hating, Sinophobic, Russophobic morons like BPL and MrKIA in this country. If they do not hate humanity, life, and the planet, then they behave in a manner consistent with such hatred. They are overwhelmingly climate deniers (though with exceptions, like BPL), science-deniers, evolution-deniers. They are very often white supremacists (subtle or overt), “Christian” fanatics (oddly more in resonance with Beelzebub than with JC), American exceptionalists, and Republicans or DNC/Clinton/corporate Democrats, or “libertarians”. They invariably support the war machine (“defense” department and “security” conglomerate) and the fascist power structure that is impelling the world toward catastrophe, either by way of climate or nuclear war. This mob of 100+ million American asshats energizes and imparts legitimacy to the forces of evil, and is essentially the enemy of health, sanity, and life on planet earth.

    Maybe the good, and life, will yet prevail, in spite of them. I have my hopes.

    WILL China Save the Planet? It depends. If the evil system supported by BPL, MrKIA, and the 100+ million asshats prevails, then no, they won’t. But it won’t be for lack of trying.

    …………………..

    * vis:

    http://chinasustainability.org/2018/11/28/chinas-carbon-emission-decreased-46-compared-with-2005/
    China’s carbon emission decreased 46% compared with 2005
    November 28, 2018
    China’s carbon emission of per unit of GDP in 2017 decreased by
    about 46% compared with 2005, achieving the 2020 goal of reducing
    carbon intensity by 40% to 45% THREE YEARS AHEAD OF SCHEDULE

    according to the 2018 Annual Report on China’s Policies and
    Actions on Climate Change.”
    also:
    “The forest stock has increased by 2.1 billion cubic meters, and
    it has exceeded the target of 2020.” [2 billion cubic meter gain is a LOT;
    the U.S. has in total about 20 billion, as a point of comparison — alan2102]

  40. 590
    Al Bundy says:

    Thanks, BPL, for correcting my Hitler/Stalin inversion.
    I tried to unpress submit!

    Our disagreement might be a difference in axioms. I try to follow my moral compass, Jesus (with no regard to religion). He said to take care of my flaws first. So I will be hardest on me, my friends, my country, my allies.

    I also respect trajectory. Alan speaks of how much China’s improved. I lamented at how far the USA has fallen in some ways, but that any country can be lambasted. First stone and all that.

    What’s your take? How would you apply Jesus’ teachings to the issue?

    _——

    Killian,

    Good info. Thanks. I’m on my way to interview an attorney. I’ll think later.

  41. 591
    zebra says:

    #588 flxible,

    “There never has been…there never will be…”

    “The measure of life is change…”

    As I have said, this topic really terrifies some people… to the point of self-contradictory irrationality, apparently.

    But anyway, the premise is absurd, since we can observe even now populations with just replacement rate fertility, as well as well below replacement. What “cataclysmic event changing the entire paradigm of human existence” caused those??

  42. 592

    #586, zebra–

    But, you, and Kevin, and your referenced group, and most everyone else, does what you acknowledged above– you optimistically focus on your solution, instead of following the basic principle in designing critical systems, which is to recognize that bad things happen, as well as good things. There’s a reason we put two engines on airliners, despite the fact that jet engines are extremely reliable.

    Well, do remember that a lot of our discussion above had as predicate your statement that there was no realistic path toward certain mitigation goals or benchmarks, and my responses that I thought in fact that there potentially were. (A viewpoint which I’ve also defended to others here in the past.)

    Now, I didn’t say anything that I knew to be untrue, suspected to be misleading, or thought impossible of realization. But I do recognize that I am, somewhat by nature and somewhat by experience optimistic. (On the ‘experience’ side of that, for instance, I could never have, and did not, anticipate that the apartheid regime in South Africa would end without a massive bloodbath. Yet here we are–South Africa has many problems, to be sure, but it’s so much better than what easily could have been.)

    None of that implies, however, that I expect everything good that (I think) CAN happen, necessarily WILL happen. (If I did think that, of course, I wouldn’t actually be working to ensure that ‘can’ does transition into ‘will’. There’d be no point in stirring a finger, if it were already inevitable.)

    Which, I suppose, is my cue to remind you once again that I am not arguing against planning for and working toward a truly sustainable society, including the problem Herman Daly called ‘scale’, and the population component of which you’ve focused on. I merely insist that the immediate need, which we mustn’t forget, is to ‘step on the brakes hard.’

  43. 593

    Killian, #583–

    OT, to be sure, but I was interested by the idea that buffalo populations were lower in North America *prior to* the Columbian contact, due to the decline in human predation as indigenous populations crashed.

    It’s somewhat contrary to most of what I’d heard–though there seems to be a lot of uncertainty to all the paleo-population estimates out there–that is, that the introduction of the horse had the dual effects of bringing a larger human population onto the Plains themselves, and increasing the efficiency of predation upon buffalo, and hence the pressure upon buffalo numbers.

    Found these links, but nothing that really nailed the question, as far as I could tell:

    https://www.researchgate.net/publication/270195526_Archaeological_Analysis_of_Bison_Jumps_and_the_Implications_to_the_Contemporary_Management_of_Bison_Herds_on_the_North_American_Great_Plains

    https://www.reddit.com/r/AskHistorians/comments/8ktdqi/were_native_american_bison_hunts_truly_sustainable/

    I do believe that wolves and grizzlies both do/did prey upon buffalo, however, though not presumably to the extent human hunters did with their ‘buffalo jump’ mass kills–a process documented to go back millennia.

  44. 594
    flxible says:

    Zebra: “But anyway, the premise is absurd, since we can observe even now populations with just replacement rate fertility, as well as well below replacement. What “cataclysmic event changing the entire paradigm of human existence” caused those??”

    Below replacement rate in some populations does not indicate possible/probable reduction of global population to 300 million in future, your premise that slightly declining fertility will reduce population by many billions in human time frames is the absurdity.

    I’m no more “terrified” of a major human population reduction, or imagining it, than I am of personally dieing, and I suspect you’re not finding a lot of discussion of your fantasy because folks aren’t here for speculation about 100s of years hence. My contribution to the overpopulation problem is to have never had offspring, how about you?

    And are you afraid to address the questions I posed, relevant to the actual problem at hand? How are you responding to climate change? Are you adapting intelligently or are you hoping your grandchildren will?

  45. 595
    James says:

    #402, “Oh btw, Elon Musk: “China’s environmental policies are way ahead of the U.S… China is by far the most aggressive [vs. U.S.] on electric vehicles and solar energy”

    It’s great that China is a leader in solar and electric vehicles, and we should learn from them on that score, but environmental concern and responsibility entails much, MUCH more than just the one homocentric issue of alternative energy. The list of their environmental horrors is long and sad, espically in their general calloused treatment of domestic and endangered animals.

    https://www.livescience.com/27862-china-environmental-problems.html

    https://en.m.wikipedia.org/wiki/Environmental_issues_in_China

    https://www.smh.com.au/world/seven-deadly-sins-the-rare-animals-the-chinese-middle-class-love-to-eat-20160526-gp4qvw.html

    https://nypost.com/2018/10/30/china-to-allow-trade-in-endangered-tiger-rhino-products-again/

    And for those who will claim it’s all fake news, there’s plenty of video too. Here’s just some (Google, YouTube).

    https://www.wilsoncenter.org/event/wild-laws-china-and-its-role-illicit-wildlife-trade

    https://www.google.com/search?q=china+dogs&prmd=insv&source=lnms&tbm=vid&sa=X&ved=2ahUKEwiuyefwpIDgAhXcIjQIHTHMBPsQ_AUoBHoECA0QBA&biw=1024&bih=675

    This is not to attack the country in a partisan way. They have their positives. And there’s plenty of fault in the West. But there’s also a lot more environmental awareness and avenues to address the issues here, without fear of falling afoul of the authorities.

    I’m always kind of shocked and disgusted by those who make absurd claims in this age of the internet.

  46. 596
    Al Bundy says:

    Do you use an electric or combustion vehicle or none?

    Biofuel all the way. Of course I don’t own a horrid planet-killing EV. (Being a twit, here, because the question is WRONG. Combustion or electron is IRRELEVANT. Sustainable and planet-friendly or not is the REAL question.)

    How is the energy you use generated?

    My guess is coal. Now, I’ve built renewable systems, so the question is a tad unfair. I just happen to be a follower of Jesus and divested, which means that I don’t have significant choice in my source of energy…. but I do choose “good” as much as the system microscopically allows.

    How much fossil energy do you use?
    Almost none. I never use my heating system. Instead, I have grow lights that I can use to increase primary productivity while letting the waste heat (perhaps 90% of the energy) keep me above freezing.

    Where does your food come from?

    Well, it used to come from the attached greenhouse I built, but since I divested I am primarily concerned about healthy food. The Industrial Food Complex doesn’t get too many of my dollars.

    Do you have children and grandchildren?

    How would I know? Ya gotta get a second date to find that out.

  47. 597
    Al Bundy says:

    flxible: your premise that slightly declining fertility will reduce population by many billions in human time frames is the absurdity.

    AB: Uh,caveats perform many functions. Sometimes they provide avenues for enlightenment, sometimes they provide cover for bullshit. The reality is the NO human society worth considering has a fertility rate above replacement. The issue is NOT about nature, but stupidity and inequality. There is absolutely no doubt that total human population is a simple choice – as in how low do we allow the population to get before we institute nudges towards higher fertility? Note that folks do that already. I mean, seriously, allowing people to evade their fair share of taxes just because they squirt out a child???!!!??? Governments try to increase their power, and encouraging “their” citizens to reproduce increases said government’s power, but when all is said and done, women tamp down male reproductive mania.

  48. 598
    zebra says:

    #594 flxible,

    I provided this previously so we can do some quantitative thinking about the topic.

    http://ilkkah.com/population-calculator/

    You can plug in numbers as you like, as others have.

    But you are simply ignoring what I have said multiple times, which is that the 300 million number is not a short-term goal, but a value that we use to begin to learn how population affects human-ecological interactions. (Which includes, obviously, socioeconomic and geopolitical structures.)

    I have suggested that many of the “problems” people would like to “solve” would not exist in such an environment, and so far nobody has disagreed…

    Of course, you are free to keep dodging the question. I’m curious, though, about your claim that you have contributed to dealing with the overpopulation problem by “not having children”.

    Are you male or female? Most commenters seem to be male, and I am puzzled by how often the claim is made by men along those lines, since men can’t actually give birth in the first place. And women certainly can have children whether or not you choose to participate with them. So, if male, your “decision” is meaningless.

    Sometimes I think this may be one of the factors that make people uncomfortable with this topic.

  49. 599
    zebra says:

    #592 Kevin McKinney,

    “Step on the brakes hard”

    You haven’t done much driving on ice, eh.

  50. 600
    dhogaza says:

    “The list of their environmental horrors is long and sad, espically in their general calloused treatment of domestic and endangered animals.”

    Treatment of domestic animals is not an environmental issue. It is an ethics issue.