discuss, debate, decide

Unenergy's blog

"Scaling the Edge" (Crowdsourcing funds for good causes through micro-philanthropy)

Interesting project & premise. Bumped and promoted. Originally posted 2011-06-20 02:09:14 -0400. - GH

Reposted from Dailykos - there are still a number of #NN11 registrations claimable per the detail below for EPM readers.

A small group of thoughtful people could change the world. Indeed, it's the only thing that ever has.
Margaret Mead

Rather than attend NN11 this year (I live in Australia), last Saturday I attended an Australian, what one could describe as a progressive conference, called Gathering 11.

This was a group of about 150 individuals who’d come together to listen to keynote speakers, workshop & brainstorm ideas (an excellent format called World Café ), network & connect with one another around the big issues facing us today. Much like what Netroots Nation is all about. The statement which most resonated with me, as much of the discussion was that our existing way of doing things is not working for a lot of people, was “Ignore the Core, Scale the Edge”.

In other words, if you want something to happen, you have to make it happen.

The question for me however, (& I’m sure many others) was how?

 

Sections: 

4 deaths in Flash Floods in Australia

Toowoomba is Australia's second largest inland city, and its largest non-capital inland city.

With an estimated district population of 128,600.
There are more than 150 public parks and gardens in Toowoomba
Elevation: 691 m (2,267 ft)
Toowoomba sits on the crest of the Great Dividing Range - a mountain range.

But today, right now in fact, flash floods have taken the lives of 4 people.

Four confirmed dead in Toowoomba flash flooding
Police have been able to confirm four people have died, including a female pedestrian who was swept to her death as flash floods struck Toowoomba, west of Brisbane.

Sections: 

A Progressive News service

Re-Posted from Dailykos with permission from StrandedWind

I don't even recall who it was, but someone tweeted about the Knight Foundation News Challenge, and I favorited it for later inspection.

I finally got around to looking at it a few days before it ended and I was kicking myself - last year they gave grants between $75,000 and $400,000 for people who had ideas. Good ideas, mind you, but just ideas ... and we've actually got Progressive Congress News up and running.

So ... step over the fold and help me drag home a great big score for the Progressive community.

Sections: 

29 coal miners trapped in New Zealand mine

With our 24/7 news cycle, always moving on to the next adrenalin fix news story, how easy it is for horrific and arguably, avoidable events to fade from the public consciousness.

On April 5, 2010, only a little over 6 months ago, the headlines in the United States were about the tragedy which had befallen 29 miners in an underground coal mine in West Virginia run by Don Blankenship's, Massey Coal.
Upper Big Branch Mine disaster

29 lives were lost.

Just today in China, 29 coal miners trapped underground by a flood, were rescued.
All 29 trapped Chinese miners rescued
These miners were the fortunate ones (this time around), as almost 100 times this number die each year in Chinese coal mines.

And right now, in New Zealand, the families of 29 coal miners are waiting for word on their loved ones who have been trapped in a coal mine since last Friday.

Sections: 

Is News Corp via Fox News, inciting terrorism?

Originally posted October 16, 2010 - 22:32. Bumped - standingup

Terrorism

  1. The use of violence and threats to intimidate or coerce, esp.for political purposes.
  2. the state of fear and& submission produced by terrorism or terrorization. a terroristic method of governing or of resisting a government.

Terrorist

  1. a radical who employs terror as a political weapon; usually organizes with other terrorists in small cells; often uses religion as a cover for terrorist activities act of terrorism, terrorism, terrorist act - the calculated use of violence (or the threat of violence) against civilians in order to attain goals that are political or religious or ideological in nature;

this is done through intimidation or coercion or instilling fear

Sections: 

Fox News parent company, the 'Enemies list' and an Ethics free zone

Rove says Obama has 'enemies list'
President George W. Bush's former senior adviser went as far as to suggest that Obama was using President Richard Nixon's tactics and having an "enemies list."

You know, I looked at this story, and couldn't for the life of me figure out, after all the terrible things which the Fox News network, especially Karl Rove, say about Democrats, the Obama administration and the man himself, why a line as lame as 'he has a secret enemies list' would even be considered a worthy, creative talking point.
I mean after all isn't the Obama administration going to create death panels, bring in Sharia law, turn the country to communofascisocialism or something like that. Whilst also only having a birth certificate for some foreign country called Hawaii?

You want to know why? I think it has something to do with his employer... Rupert Murdoch being accused of exactly that...

Sections: 

Shine, Baby, Shine - JR goes solar

I’d put my money on solar energy. What a source of power!
I hope we don’t have to wait until oil and coal run out before we tackle that.
I wish I had more years left.

Thomas Alva Edison
February 11, 1847 - October 18, 1931 (aged 84)

That second part, the bolded comment got me thinking that Edison, recognizing the potential of the sun to meet our energy needs and knowing that fossil fuels were a finite resource, towards the end of his life wanted very much to be around to see this remarkable resource harnessed and developed into something sustainable.

Drilling relief wells

The shutdown of the drilling operations is expected to have a substantial impact on the Louisiana economy, as the 33 rigs contemplated in last week's shutdown order probably employ 7,590 people, and each of those is believed to support four other jobs on land.

The Interior Department has released a list of 17 companies with deepwater drilling operations in the Gulf of Mexico that are affected, but it has not disclosed the names of the prospects, rigs or locations, saying the information is proprietary
Source

And of course today

Judge Blocks Drilling Moratorium
NEW ORLEANS (AP) -- A federal judge in New Orleans has blocked a six-month moratorium on new deepwater drilling projects that was imposed in response to the massive Gulf oil spill.Source

Sections: 

The Five Flawed Choices of the Oilpocalypse?

Just came across a post by emptywheel at Firedoglake who has put up a letter the Chairman of the Committee on Energy and Commerce, Henry Waxman has written to BP regarding the decisions made by BP leading up to the April 20 Deepwater Horizon disaster.

BP’s Well Failure Due to Effort to Save $10 Million?

It lays out five choices which BP appear to have made which, had they taken a different route, one which did not appear to be focused on saving time and money alone, the destruction in the Gulf of Mexico may not have happened.

Sections: 

Deepwater Chernobyl

A while ago I watched a documentary on building the sarcophagus which encloses the Chernobyl Nuclear disaster site. I have unsuccessfully, tried to find that documentary as my recollection runs that the radioactivity released from the Chernobyl site was only able to be stopped by burying the reactor core in sand, concrete and an outer shell called a sarcophagus.

There seem to be parallels with the current Deepwater Horizon disaster in that we are witnessing once more that man is capable of unleashing uncontrollable forces in his pursuit of energy. Forces he had no contingency plan to deal with. Forces capable of devastating economies, destroying livelihoods and killing wildlife by contaminating the environment to such an extent that even people find they have to move away rather than suffer.

That the only way that we have to fix it once that bottle is uncorked, was to just bury it in concrete. In Russia the reactor core was covered in sand then concrete. In the Gulf of Mexico disaster, first mud was tried, but once the relief wells are drilled, it will be likewise be filled with concrete.

Based on this I went looking for supporting evidence to back up this initial premise, and am astounded by what I found.

Sections: 

"I don't ever remember doing this" - Rig Survivor

Rig survivors: BP ordered shortcut on day of blast

BP official wanted workers to replace heavy mud, used to keep the well's pressure down, with lighter seawater to help speed a process that was costing an estimated $750,000 a day and was already running five weeks late, rig survivors told CNN.

BP won the argument, said Doug Brown, the rig's chief mechanic. "He basically said, 'Well, this is how it's gonna be.' "

In the CNN interviews, the workers described a corporate culture of cutting staff and ignoring warning signs ahead of the blast. They said BP routinely cut corners and pushed ahead despite concerns about safety.

Remember 60 minutes had the interview with Mike Williams where he suspected this was the case.

Jed wrote about it here:

Sections: 

400 million gallons = 40 Exxon Valdez

Exxon Valdez spilled an estimated minimum 10.8 million US gallons (40.9 million litres, or 250,000 barrels) of crude oil.

Why BP Won't Measure the Oil Spill

Independent scientists analyzing the slick set the estimate at 25,000 barrels a day, and once BP released the underwater video, they calculated flow rates as high as 80,000 barrels a day.

From a comment in that thread :

at 80k barrels a day, this very well could become the most massive spill in history - EASILY. That's 3,360,000 gallons a day for 90-120 days (assuming the other wells they're drilling do what they think they will - which is another assumption they're making). That's 403,200,000 gallons, dwarfing the Persian gulf war spills in the early 1990s.

A couple of things with this estimate approaching almost half a Billion gallons of oil.

BP : Let's keep the Astrophysicists busy guessing how many jelly beans in the jar

According to E-How - Many charity functions and parties offer a prize to the person who guesses the correct number of jelly beans in a jar.

Tips to guess how many jelly beans are :
1. Take a look at the jar size. This is important in making a guess.
2. Consider that each gallon jar can hold 930 jelly beans.
3. Pick the jar up (if you are allowed to) and count how many jelly beans there are in one row.

It seems that BP are about to offer America's finest scientists an opportunity to engage in a game of jelly bean guesstimates due to their unwillingness to measure the flow coming from the leaks at the bottom of the Gulf of Mexico. Sound unbelievable? Follow after the fold and I'll explain what is going on here, which, in my personal and professional opinion, shouldn't be.

The Earth is our Grandma, Fossil Fuels her death panel

Below is an extract from a movie I watched a while back which had a pretty powerful monologue at the end. Many people have likely forgotten or not seen this movie, and I have linked to it at the end with a video of the dialog, but it is as relevant today as it was back in 1994. To think that 16 years ago the same things were being warned about which we have seen over and over again, makes one wonder about the intelligence of man. I should mention the clip I've selected from the film also has a BOP or Blow Out Preventer Valve shown leaking. Might give some people an idea of what it is on the bottom of the ocean which has caused so much grief by failing.

The Gulf appears to be bleeding - Worse Than BP Admits

Video from May 7th (4 days ago) flyover of Gulf of Mexico and location of sunken Deepwater Horizon courtesy, Current TV. Amateur Video Of Gulf Oil Slick - Worse Than BP Admits Transcript follows :

On May 7 2010, John Wathen and Pilot Tom Hutchins flew out over the Gulf of Mexico. Along the way we saw small boats dragging buoys out to the islands to protect them from the oil sheen that was certainly coming our way. At nine miles out we began to smell the oil.

User login