…that’s way more sensitive than natural skin. This could have interesting implications for both cybernetics and remote operations.
How do we best maintain the fish population?
I’m hoping that we can soon come up with palatable and healthy substitutes in the lab. Fish is a very healthy source of omega 3s.
How government wrecked it:
I’m pretty alert to such problems these days. Soap doesn’t work. Toilets don’t flush. Clothes washers don’t clean. Light bulbs don’t illuminate. Refrigerators break too soon. Paint discolors. Lawnmowers have to be hacked. It’s all caused by idiotic government regulations that are wrecking our lives one consumer product at a time, all in ways we hardly notice.
It’s like the barbarian invasions that wrecked Rome, taking away the gains we’ve made in bettering our lives. It’s the bureaucrats’ way of reminding market producers and consumers who is in charge.
At some point, in ways large and small, people will revolt.
We treat technological progress as though it were a natural process, and we speak of Moore’s law — computers’ processing power doubles every two years — as though it were one of the laws of thermodynamics. But it is not an inevitable, natural process. It is the outcome of a particular social order.
Which reminds me of the Heinlein quote:
Throughout history, poverty is the normal condition of man. Advances which permit this norm to be exceeded — here and there, now and then — are the work of an extremely small minority, frequently despised, often condemned, and almost always opposed by all right-thinking people. Whenever this tiny minority is kept from creating, or (as sometimes happens) is driven out of a society, the people then slip back into abject poverty.
This is known as “bad luck.”
Kevin’s new book just came out this week.
Sorry, gun grabbers, but it’s an historically ignorant argument.
That’s probably why Piers Morgan uses is.
And amusingly, as Cooke points out, the implications of this argument is that it would justify civilians having select-fire weapons, since that’s what the military has.
The new green energy:
…as profits from wind, solar, biofuels and other alternatives consistently fell short of expectations — and as the fossil fuel business boomed — things got complicated. Venture capitalists and other investment funds started stretching the definition of clean technology almost beyond recognition in an effort to make money while clinging to their environmental ideals.
Today, clean technology investment funds are not trying to replace the fossil fuel industry, they’re trying to help it by financing companies that can make mining and drilling less dirty. The people running these funds acknowledge the apparent hypocrisy, but defend a more liberal definition of clean technology.
“Oil and gas will be with us for a long time. If we can clean that up we will do the world a great service,” says Wal van Lierop, CEO of Chrysalix, a Vancouver, Canada-based venture capital firm founded in 2001.
Shat a shock, that profits “consistently fell short of expectations.” Perhaps, like the president and his campaign-donating cronies, they had unrealistic expectations. Or more likely for the latter, they just expected the taxpayer to make up the difference.
It took an economic disaster for them to reduce their carbon output:
But the data shows that even though EU economic weakness and US natural gas are responsible for significant drops in emissions in the developed world, developing countries, led by China, continue to drive the global total higher.
This underscores the disconnect between green policies and green results. The US hasn’t checked off many items on the green wish list for domestic legislation; Europe has. But it turns out that the introduction of the euro and the subsequent economic disaster had more to do with European emissions drops than Kyoto or the shambolic carbon-trading program.
The usual suspects are headed to Bonn next week for another forlorn attempt to carve out a meaningful global climate treaty. Meanwhile in the real world, the challenge is to find a way for developing countries to continue rapid growth without driving greenhouse gasses and other pollutants to potentially dangerous levels.
That’s assuming that the high levels of the “other” “pollutants” is more dangerous than slow economic growth, of course. And meanwhile, it turns out that the US has twice as much oil, and three times as much gas as we thought. And “peak oil” continues to recede into the future, to the tears of the Malthusians. Which are delicious.
[Update a while later]
Gazprom (and the Russian economy) are in trouble, too:
The US has begun exporting gas to Europe, and has also ramped up coal exports by more than 250 percent since 2005. The net result has been to knock Gazprom back on its heels. The WSJ reports that the negotiations with Bulgaria were heated, with Gazprom’s negotiators shouting in frustration on several occasions.
In public statements, however, the Russian company remains defiant (and perhaps in a state of denial) about the implications of the shale gas boom…
Well, that’s one tactic, I guess. Not one I’d recommend, though.
Plus, it’s long past time to privatize air-traffic control. My long-time associate and friend Bob Poole at Reason has been promoting this for years.
Are we on the verge of conquering it?
The comments are sort of interesting. A lot of the naturalistic fallacy is showing up there. I found particularly amusing the one commenter who couldn’t imagine that evolution could make a mistake.
[Via Geek Press]
They may have to start using shale to remain competitive with the U.S.
They worry that the country’s ambitious environmental goals are far less meaningful if the economy withers in achieving them.
You don’t say.
It would be a shame if they decided to start being economically sane.
[Update a while later]
More bad news for the warm-mongering econuts — scientists say that fracking is safe. And of course, they’ll believe it, because as they always tell us, we must follow the science.
Actually, I think that this would explain a lot of the administration’s environmental and energy policy.
Steve Hayward wonders if there could be a sitcom about think tankers.
Actually, it would be amusing to see the interactions between denizens of, say, AEI and Brookings. And imagine the snark from Cato, CEI and Reason. I’d cast Katherine Mangu-Ward as herself. But Kate Micucci might be able to do the job, too. And then there’s Jonah.
Someone needs to work up a treatment, stat.
The White House knew that Fisker was headed for a fall, and gave them our money anyway.
Hey, got to keep those campaign donations coming in.
Ed Driscoll has some thoughts on 1968, the Year That Sucked, at least until almost the end. I remember waking up to my clock radio, announcing the assassination of Robert Kennedy.
And yes, for those who watched, last night’s episode was (predictably?) depressing.
German taxpayers have poured $130 billion into subsidizing solar panels, but ultimately by the end of the century, this will postpone global warming by a trivial 37 hours. The electric car is even less efficient. Its production consumes a vast amount of fossil fuels, and mostly it utilizes fossil fuel electricity to be recharged. Even if the U.S. did reach the lofty goal of 1 million electric cars by 2015 — costing taxpayers more than $7.5 billion — global warming would be postponed by only 60 minutes.
These beguiling policies cost a fortune but make little difference to the environment because the technologies are still not ready. That’s why we need to invest more in long-term research and development for green innovation. This would be much cheaper than current environmental policies and would end up doing more good for the climate.
But it wouldn’t pay off political cronies.
As he notes, it’s time to start having sensible, not economically stupid environmental policies.
[Update late morning]
The EU carbon market continues to collapse.
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