Posts Tagged ‘Earth Day’

March For Science, Humanity, Sawing From Saturn.

April 23, 2017

Nietzsche “made philosophy with a hammer”. Yet science was always made with a saw, literally cutting, and not just through crap:

Today is “Earth Day”, in the USA, the most significant country, at least in the sense of most polluting, per capita (except for critters such as some emirates, Canada and Australia). Self-admiring herds of hollier-than-thou posers proclaimed the “March For Science”. Those herds marching around the US, with herbivorous intelligence, claim science is in danger. I agree, there is never enough science. 

Ironically, it is the ability to make distinctions which is in primordial danger. The inability to make distinctions proliferates in the rabidly anti-Trump, and PC crowd which tends to be marching quite a bit these days, flaunting its rage, and lack of foresight. Yet the “March for Science” is not per se anti-Trump (although the censoring, manipulative and partisan New York Times claimed it was).

Political Correctness certainly rests on the false pretense of not making distinction between being right, and feeling good. PC is driven by moods, not careful, painstaking analysis, and this is fundamentally anti-science. No distinctions, no science. (But certainly plenty of racism, tribalism, nationalism, fanaticism.) As we will see.

Marching is good, science even better. Without science there is no humanity. Literally and figuratively. Science is not a choice humanity makes, but its essence..

Humanity colonized the planet, and is now colonizing the Solar System. Colonizing: that’s what humanity not just does, but is. Starting 50,000 years ago, humanity colonized Oceania. Actually all of planet Earth, and its oceans were conquered from very small human populations. (In a very complicated spatio-temporal pattern, with select interbreeding of long isolated populations.)

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Forecasts are that, thanks to automation, robots, Artificial Intelligence, 60 million jobs will be lost in the USA within 20 years. The solution? More science. More scientists, and artists. More high level science and other high level creative jobs. As robots crawl all over, creative thinking will be needed more than ever. For example, the mathematician of the future will coach her office AI into producing thousands of theorems, after tweaking some axiom(s). And then she will ponder how useful, or pretty, those theorems produced by the AI, look.

Homo SAPIENS, comes from Latin sapientem (nominative sapiens), present participle of sapere “to taste, have taste, be wise”. Homo Sapiens is a creature of wealth and taste. Wealth from capital, even simple obsidian blades and fire cages. 

Very pale tiny blueish dot: Earth as seen from between Saturn Mighty Rings. Shot By Cassini, April 12, 2017

Cassini/Huygens is the NASA/ESA robot sent to the Saturn system, nearly 20 years ago. It established the nature of Titan’s atmosphere and surface, and that life could exist on Enceladus. Enceladus has plenty of water and hydrocarbon molecules. Now, after using Titan to change its orbit completely, thanks to five close encounter with the mighty satellite, from various position, Cassini has switched to a semi polar orbit which allows it to squeeze between the giant planet and her rings.  In case it would collide with a grain of sand, or ice, the nuclear-powered spacecraft is advancing antenna first, using it as a shield.

Cassini was a Savoy-Italian-French astronomer, born in Nice (where now Islamist immigrants kill people by the dozens, in the name of the “Islamist State”). Cassini was first to find the Cassini division of Saturn rings and was the first to measure (using a 220 feet high church roof to set-up a camera obscura, with agreement of clerics) the diameter of the Sun. The diameter of the Sun was found to vary on the ground of the church during the year, as predicted by Kepler’s ellipse theory of planetary orbits. Cassini helped set-up the Paris observatory, and worked as an astronomer under a Louis XIV grant, for the last 43 years of his life. His son succeeded him as astronomer and geodesist (measuring the Earth).

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Why does humanity need taste? To be able to distinguish: The word “Science” appears in mid fourteenth century English meaning “what is known, knowledge (of something) acquired by study; information;” also “assurance of knowledge, certitude, certainty,” from Old French science “knowledge, learning, application; corpus of human knowledge“.

In the twelfth century, the French, having the taste for simplifying the lives of their lips, transformed the Latin scientia “knowledge, a knowing; expertness,” from sciens (genitive scientis) “intelligent, skilled,” into something easier to pronounce (most of French is simplified Latin pronunciation… and grammar).

The original Latin “scientia” is the present participle of scire “to know,” probably originally “to separate one thing from another, to distinguish,” related to scindere “to cut, divide,” from Proto Indo-European root *skei- “to cut, to split”. In French : “scier” (to saw). This is the source also of Greek skhizein “to split, rend, cleave,” Gothic skaidan, Old English sceadan “to divide, separate;” itself related to schizo…

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Want to Save The Earth? Institute a Carbon Tax!

Trump came out with a pro-science and pro-Earth statements, so the Trump Derangement Syndrome crowd will punch the air, once again. Right Trump at some point was one way, and at other points, the other. Trump and three of his children signed a  2009 letter to President Barack Obama calling for a global climate deal. “We support your effort to ensure meaningful and effective measures to control climate change, an immediate challenge facing the United States and the world today,” That was before Trump discovered, as I did to my sorrow, that Obama’s aspiring mood seems to have bee that of one of these Kenyan boys helping the big white masters of international finance, in a typical picture of colonial Kenya.

Later the weather got cold when Trump was trying to golf, or enjoy balmy weather in Los Angeles, and he called global warming a hoax. Nobody seems to have shown him the graph of the deep ocean temperature, steadily going up.

“My Administration is committed to keeping our air and water clean, to preserving our forests, lakes, and open spaces, and to protecting endangered species.” Trump’s statement added that environmental protection should not come at a cost to working families, and that the White House was focused on “reducing unnecessary burdens” on American workers while working to protect the environment.

Trump insisted that his administration would work to achieve the “twin goals” of environmental health and American economic growth, noting that “we should remember that rigorous science depends not on ideology, but on a spirit of honest inquiry and robust debate… Today on Earth Day, we celebrate our beautiful forests, lakes and land. We stand committed to preserving the natural beauty of our nation.”

Beauty of Earth too. Earth Moon from Saturn: We Are Nothing Much! We Are Nothing Much! Hanging onto precious little! Care for our small blue home by making the Solar System into a more human park, there is lots of space!

Thus the usual sea of words from the US government, same as all the ones before. For 24 years, three US administrations, preciously nothing important has been done to reduce the CO2 crisis, at the US government level (whereas all European government, including fossil fuel wealthy Norway, put a 400% tax on fossil fuels).

So far, for the USA, it has been mostly words (the gasoline tax established by Eisenhower, as many good, effective, progressive things, was not really indexed on inflation, and has become ever more irrelevant). All most of the significant progress done in the US was from scientific and technological advances to which the government contributed only indirectly. For example the government contributed to PhotoVoltaic (PV) research. PV is changing the world: by 2020, the total Earth PV production will be at least 500 Gigawatts (500 standard nuclear reactors).

Human technology is improving ever more. The tech found in the 20-year-old  Cassini/Huyghens is already amazing. And we are much further. But weneed to accelerate, lest we perish. Here are the “Grand Finale” orbits of Cassini, after having used Titan’s attraction to get a completely different set of orbits.

Beauty of Earth too. Earth Moon from Saturn: We Are Nothing Much! We Are Nothing Much! Hanging onto precious little! Care for our small blue home by making the Solar System into a more human park, there is lots of space!

There is only one policy which can seriously help: a carbon tax. Or more exactly a GreenHouse Gas tax, a GHG tax. It does not have to be punitive, vengeful. Just compute the damage particular emissions cause to the Earth, consider those to be part of their cost, and require the perpetrator to pay for that damage they cause. Those who march together, bleating together about supporting Earth, are finding all too much comfort in their lack of data gathering, thought, and will. If they want to save earth that much, they should campaign for a GreenHouse Gas tax. A GHG tax. The more GHG is used in making a product, including produce, flowers, air travel and  ship transport, the more it should be taxed (the WTO authorizes this sort of tax, at any level… while limiting other taxes at 3%. So a 35% GHG tax is WTO, and UN legal! Installing it would dramatically favor the non-carbon energy production, from PV to electric hydrogen cargo ships pulled by sails or kites…)

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Of The Ecological Hypocrisy Of The Obamas, Oprah, Springsteen, and their ilk:

Obama is great leader of the hollier-than-thou, we-don’t-need-to-think-too-hard, as long as it looks good on TV, crowd. Obama is widely and wildly admired, by the PC throngs. Although my flesh and blood friend, he was captured by the establishment, even before he became president. Much of the rage against Trump is actually subconsciously displaced from a severely suppressed, denied rage, against Obama, changing mirage! This all needs some fresh air.

Obama sold Federal coal, one of the highest quality low sulfur coal on the entire Earth, for 20% of its real environmental cost. That in turn depressed coal prices everywhere. But don’t worry: last week, the Obamas were in Tahiti, and Moorea, on a plutocrat’s 140 meter super yacht, celebrating the sucking dummies who vote “democratic”, and want to save the Earth. The Obamas were celebrating Earth Day their way, polluting massively, for all to see, with Oprah Winfrey, Bruce Springsteen, Tom Hanks, David Geffen. After an incredible performance in not appearing to be what they really are, the Obamas have revealed to be some of the greatest stage artists, and deserve to share in the .001% lifestyle. 

What will Trump do about the climate disaster? We don’t know (all the noisy measures he took so far are devoid of much impact, they satisfy the deniers, but that’s it). I advise a massive carbon tax, as usual.

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One has to take decisions, to make distinctions: Considering the danger of Earth’s microbes spreading to Enceladus’ water ocean, or Titan hydrocarbon atmosphere, the decision was taken to crash Cassini into Saturn, where it will burn up. (Maybe Earthly microbes will survive and thrive in Saturn clouds, oops, haha…)

Yes, there is a dark side to colonization, including space colonization, and there is a dark side even to cognition itself. But not to worry: our species is fully equipped to handle the Dark Side, with a determined smile! That’s part of our charm.

Patrice Ayme’

Earth Day or Earth Doom?

April 22, 2016

Earth Day is an old United States invention. But talking the talk is all too often a vaccination against walking the walk. A few countries are leading the charge towards doom and gloom. And foremost that great leader of all, the USA.

As I have explained, disaster have been most profitable to Anglo-Saxon America’s expansion, traditions, and institutions… But for the Civil War. Thus there is an US tradition of benign neglect towards the worst, until it becomes juicy enough to bear fruit.

PPP A Few Countries Are The Main CO2 Culprits, And It Does Not Have To Do With Development.

Hillary Clinton feels the USA cannot afford health care. And it’s just one more step to inform us that the USA cannot inform us to cut down on CO2 emissions. Actually super young, super cool, super hip, super elected Justin Trudeau just informed us of that about Canada. It reminds me of people who say: ‘I am not a racist, BUT…’

So Trudeau agrees the Earth is scorched by carbon, but does not want to tax carbon, lest carbon would lead an unhappy life…

Pic Vignemale, With One Of the last Dying Glaciers of Pyrénées At the Foot of the Granite Pillar.

Pic Vignemale, With One Of the last Dying Glaciers of Pyrénées At the Foot of the Granite Pillar.

In the Middle Ages, it was claimed that the lioness gave birth, with her mouth. 14 centuries earlier, there were European lions in Greece. Facts get easily replace by ridiculous myths. The very large European lion had no mane. It is now extinct. Officially due to its obvious similarity with the Devil (Pluto, Hades): tall, hairy, with claws and large teeth, the European Brown Bear (ancestor to the American Grizzly) was ordered more or less exterminated by Charlemagne’s government. It nearly disappeared too.

I was talking with an American friend. She and her two children are going to the Alps this summer. Curiously she plans then to train to another mountain range, and visit it. I observed that said range, lower than the Alps, and less sharp, yet full of lakes, and granite reminded me of the Sierra Nevada, so I would never need to go there, as I frequent the Sierra all too much. She suspiciously wondered how I could know the Pyrénées, as I had never been there and gloated I never will.

Well, I use advanced morality, and various methods of tele-vision. It’s not just as good, it’s better. Knowing that the Pyrenees is a formidable, mostly impassable (very few passes) rampart between Spain and France, explains a lot. But that’s better explored through books, as, doing it by foot would take much of a lifetime.

Travelling is good. But having a human reason for it, better. If it’s just for marking territory, one stoops to the level of dogs, considering what is going on with our planet-wide mismanagement.

171 countries signed the Paris COP 21 accord in New York at the United Nations. It’s going to take one or two more years to ratify this Paris COP 21. Unfortunately, it’s supposed to be implemented in 2020… when every month now counts! There were eleven (11) straight months of worldwide temperature records.

Things need to change faster. French justice seized the belongings of the Bongo family. Bongo is one of the many African presidential families which has milked Africa. A relative of dictator Assad of Syria owns hundreds of millions of dollars of property in France alone. If one stripped all the world plutocrats of the properties they own in the leading cities and places of the West, real estate would not doubt significantly go down in value.

Meanwhile a drugged out “Jehovah Witness” musician died at 57. A few days ago, a plane had to make an emergency landing because said drugged out anti-role model had overdosed. Well I am witness that Jehovah had a very Dark Side we arguably would have done better without. And I don’t like Purple Rain very much.

Those who drug themselves out are basically saying that reality is better left alone, thus, if not most satisfying, at least, satisfying enough.

In 20 years, if one persisted at the present rate of CO2 emissions, Earth’s overall temperature would not stay below a two degree Centigrade increase. That would mean the poles would melt. Empirically the rise of temperatures of the poles has been at least five times that of the rest of the planet. That rate will itself augment considerably. Ice will run out of planet (so will many species).

The public does not seem to appreciate that a 40 a 70% reduction in CO2 before 2050 enormous effort. An example is my friend above, who has travelled over much of the world. Air travel contributes significantly to CO2 emissions. Yes, Airbus works on large electric planes. Slap a carbon tax, to accelerate its work.

COP21 says: no more net emissions CO2 in second half century. This will be very difficult to achieve without thermonuclear plants (which are still the energy of the future).

The world Public does not understand magnitude of change. One has to change not just development mode, to get rid of Carbon burning, but the very nature of everyday morality. The CO2 gets in the atmosphere, and the ocean, and the warming and acidity occur decades later. Skepticism is natural in scientists. One can only be skeptical when one sees the entire Coral Reef Barrier blanching under our eyes.

Because, ladies and gentlemen, within existing technology, the only fix is to stop burning carbon. Thermonuclear Terraforming plants will have to extract CO2 from the atmosphere, to prevent a runaway Jurassic, but those admirable devices are not yet here.Giant solar plants in the most favorable places may be able to extract CO2 too, with existing technology, including imitating plants to make useful materials from CO2.

But the fact remains: the “Energetic Transition”, away from carbon burning, is also a moral transition.

Patrice Ayme’