Daily Digest

Daily Digest 5/2 - U.S. Forces Kill bin Laden, American Hellholes, Microgrids Get Big

Monday, May 2, 2011, 10:54 AM
  • Osama bin Laden Buried At Sea After Being Killed By U.S. Forces In Pakistan
  • A Fistful Of Dollars - Part Two
  • Stock World Weekly: Market Madness
  • American Hellholes
  • Surviving In Argentina - Rural Homes Being Attacked
  • Shortages Of Key Drugs Endanger Patients
  • Microgrids Get Big
  • The Scam Behind The Rise In Oil, Food Prices
  • Unsafe At Any Dose

Our 'What Should I Do?' guide has steps to cook, see & stay warm in times of power outage

Economy

Osama bin Laden buried at sea after being killed by U.S. forces in Pakistan (jdargis)

In a rare Sunday night address from the East Room of the White House, President Obama said a small team of U.S. personnel attacked a compound Sunday in Pakistan’s Abbottabad Valley, where bin Laden had been hiding since at least last summer. During a firefight, the U.S. team killed bin Laden, 54, and took custody of his body in what Obama called “the most significant achievement to date in our nation’s effort to defeat al-Qaeda.”

A Fistful Of Dollars - Part Two (JimQ)

Without Federal Reserve intervention in the financial markets since September 2008, the biggest banks in the world would have entered bankruptcy liquidation. The U.S. economy would have experienced a 10% to 20% fall in GDP. The unemployment rate would have soared above 15%. The stock market would have fallen 70%. Wealthy bondholders and stockholders would have seen their wealth cut in half. Incumbent politicians would have all been thrown out of office. The richest Americans, constituting the ruling class, would have borne the brunt of the pain.

Stock World Weekly: Market Madness (Ilene)

On Wednesday, April 27, Federal Reserve Chairman Ben Bernanke gave a precedent-setting, first time ever press conference after the release of the minutes of the latest FOMC meeting. There were no surprises in the Federal Open Market Committee (FOMC) statement, as the Fed voted unanimously to keep interest rates extremely low for an extended period.

American Hellholes (June C.)

If you still live in an area of the United States that is prosperous, do not mock the cities that you are about to read about. The cold, hard reality of the matter is that economic decline and economic despair are spreading rapidly and they will come to your area soon enough. Right now we are still talking about "American hellholes", but if the long-term economic trends that are destroying this nation are not turned around eventually we will just be talking about one gigantic "American hellhole". In the end, no area of the country will completely escape the economic hell that is coming.

Surviving In Argentina - Rural Homes Being Attacked (June C.)

Hope people realize these things and start preparing better instead on counting on distance to save their necks. It’s a terrible mistake and as things get worse, a mistake that will cost a growing number of people dearly.

Shortages of key drugs endanger patients (VeganD)

“It’s a crisis,” said Erin R. Fox, manager of the drug information service at the University of Utah, who monitors drug shortages for the American Society of Health-System Pharmacists. “Patients are at risk.”

Energy

Microgrids Get Big (guardia)

That’s because the university [University of California, San Diego] that is a leader in climate change research is also home to what is likely the most advanced microgrid in North America. As such, it aims to highlight how small, semi-independent power grids could help solve the problem of how to reliably integrate renewable energy into distribution systems, boost grid security and even make money for their owners, operators and developers.

The Scam Behind The Rise In Oil, Food Prices (Ilene)

Addressing the problem begins with identifying the underlying causes - what is enabling and encouraging so much speculation? What kind of regulation might be reasonable (should this game have rules because people's lives are being turned upside down)? Who are the biggest speculators? I submit that the problem originates with Federal govt's failure to govern itself and promote a healthy economy, the Federal Reserve's policy of Quantitative Easing, and the lack of intelligent regulation.

Environment

Unsafe At Any Dose (jdargis)

Nuclear accidents never cease. We’re decades if not generations away from seeing the full effects of the radioactive emissions from Chernobyl.

Article suggestions for the Daily Digest can be sent to [email protected]. All suggestions are filtered by the Daily Digest team and preference is given to those that are in alignment with the message of the Crash Course and the "3 Es."

23 Comments

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Proper Link To "Rural Homes Being Attacked"

Re: "Rural Homes Being Attacked"

This should be the link to the page on Fernando "FerFAL" Aguirre's blog:
http://ferfal.blogspot.com/2011/04/rural-homes-being-attacked.html

"Argentine firearms author Alejandro Reynoso wrote about the different weaponry needed for home defense and in his experience while you may get away with one or two handguns in the city for home defense, in more isolated locations long arms are called for because the possibility of attacks that are more frontal and last more time are more likely. The isolation works in the attacker’s advantage, not yours."

One of the comments on that page:
"It is intersting to note that in many parts of the world you will not find the lone isolated house. Centuries of conflict proved that people clustered together for common defense, even if not a walled village, survived longer. In most of the small foreign countries it is also normal for houses to have enclosed courtyards that one has to break into first before gaining entry into the house. Walls generally have glass or barb wire on top. Windows are barred or second floor and barbed only. Cement or Adobe construction seems to stop small caliber rounds pretty well too."

Poet

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Officials Unfazed by Dollar Slide

Officials Unfazed by Dollar Slide WSJ http://google.com/news/...
In recent days, the nation's top two economic policy makers—Federal Reserve Chairman Ben Bernanke and Treasury Secretary Tim Geithner—have publicly expressed their desire for a strong dollar. But there is little indication of a change in policy from either the Fed or Treasury—or in underlying economic conditions—that would alter the currency's downward course.

(A Graph of the Downward slope of the dollar for different time periods is in the article)

Sticker Shock by Niall Ferguson http://www.newsweek.com/2011/05/01/sticker-shock.html
The Fed may deny it, but Americans know that prices are rising. Inflation is back

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Debt-Limit Deniers Don’t Buy ’Chicken Little’ Warnings

It’s debt-limit hysteria, says Pennsylvania Senator Pat Toomey. Scare tactics, says Senator Jim DeMint of South Carolina. To Representative Joe Walsh of Illinois, it’s fear-mongering.

A growing number of Republicans are scoffing at warnings that failing to raise the U.S. debt limit would trigger a financial catastrophe. Treasury Secretary Timothy Geithner’s cautions are merely aimed at stampeding Republicans into lifting the $14.3 trillion limit, said Toomey.

“They don’t want to make any concessions on spending,” he said. The administration is using the specter of a government default “as a cudgel to beat Republicans into submission and to prevent any real cuts” in the federal budget, he said.

As Congress returns to Washington from a two-week recess and edges closer to a showdown on the debt limit, more and more Republicans are contemplating what had been unthinkable: allowing the government to crash right into the cap. These lawmakers -- as well as former Minnesota Governor Tim Pawlenty, a potential Republican presidential candidate -- argue that there is an alternative to an unpopular vote to lift the limit or economic chaos.

http://www.bloomberg.com/news/2011-05-02/debt-limit-deniers-say-geithner-tries-to-stampede-republicans-on-debt-vote.html

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CME Group Hiking Silver-Futures Margins By Another 11.6%

CME Group Hiking Silver-Futures Margins By Another 11.6% http://www.kitco.com/reports/KitcoNews20110502AS_CME.html
CME Group is hiking silver margins by another 11.6% after already hiking them twice last week, the exchange announced Monday afternoon.

http://www.theglobeandmail.com/globe-investor/investment-ideas/streetwis...
Eric Sprott and Sprott hedge funds have sold trust units in Sprott's Physical Silver Trust. The trades were made in the last two weeks of April when the price of silver peaked.
From: http://twitter.com/#!/silverguru22

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Rant

I am recovering very nicely from another rant to to the empty room, thank you.

We convert 10 units of oil energy into 1 unit of food energy. This has enabled us to grow the population from 1.5 billion when I was born to 6.7 billion now. And the oil is going away. 

And what do we see on the news? Some cipher is slotted. Why not what Billy Clinton is doing with his willie? Or some princes's marriage? What about. .  .never mind.

So, are they dumb or do they just not want know?

This is truely a titanic battle of the Memes.

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Cain versus Abel

Poet wrote,

Centuries of conflict proved that people clustered together for common defense, even if not a walled village, survived longer. In most of the small foreign countries it is also normal for houses to have enclosed courtyards that one has to break into first before gaining entry into the house

 

Ghengis Khan (Representing Abel, the shepherd) thought that cities were a blight on the perfection of God's creation and set about razing them to the ground.

My point? There are alternatives to the settled life.

The Syrians under Darius tried to use their mighty army to defeat the Sythians. He was advised not to try.

After two years of marching around after the migratory Sythians, he challenged the Sythians to a battle across a valley. All were drawn up in their battle lines when the Sythians galloped off the field. In exasperation Darius asked his general what was going on. "I believe they are chasing a hare, Sire."

Meanwhile the Sythians had destroyed a vital bridge that Darius needed to get his army home. Does this all sound familiar?

(From The Histories by Herodotus)

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Harper Conservatives Win Majority for First Time in Canada Vote

Harper Conservatives Win Majority for First Time in Canada Vote

Just in time for the crash... I hope that will sink Harper, solid

Samuel

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Any means to an end?
guardia wrote:

Harper Conservatives Win Majority for First Time in Canada Vote

Just in time for the crash... I hope that will sink Harper, solid

So yesterday you were advocating nuclear disaster to push your agenda for less nuclear power. Today you are hoping for financial crisis to push your political agenda.  Is that really what you believe? Do you really hope for stife and suffering to promote your goals?  Do you really hope for failure? You talk about what we should want for those that come after us, sorry, but I don't believe in tossing people under the bus to build the world I would like to see.

I don't know Canadian politics, but when I read the article about Harper I see someone who is actually trying to get control of spending problems.  After all Canada appears to be on the same track as the US.

 

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Viability Of A Nomadic Existence In Post-Collapse America
Arthur Robey wrote:

My point? There are alternatives to the settled life.

Arthur Robey

A nomadic existence has certainly been viable throughout human history. It's still viable today in the steppes and grasslands, rain forests, etc.

But in my view, here in the United States, it's probably not viable in the years immediately after any kind of collapse. While being always on the move has some advantages, it also means having to live off the land, off scavenging (or robbing/stealing), carrying everything with you, etc. Unless you're a solitary wanderer (more viable), families need to band together with others for protection out in the open - which means even more food needed, higher shelter requirements, and a slower pace of travel to accomodate the young and the elderly.

Mode of transport? Unless you have access to fuel everywhere you go, you'll be limited to horses, walking, maybe bicycles.

Now boats. That's worth considering for those who are nautically minded. Watch out for pirates!

Poet

 

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Re: Any means to an end?
rhare wrote:
guardia wrote:

Harper Conservatives Win Majority for First Time in Canada Vote

Just in time for the crash... I hope that will sink Harper, solid

So yesterday you were advocating nuclear disaster to push your agenda for less nuclear power. Today you are hoping for financial crisis to push your political agenda.  Is that really what you believe? Do you really hope for stife and suffering to promote your goals?  Do you really hope for failure? You talk about what we should want for those that come after us, sorry, but I don't believe in tossing people under the bus to build the world I would like to see.

I don't know Canadian politics, but when I read the article about Harper I see someone who is actually trying to get control of spending problems.  After all Canada appears to be on the same track as the US.

What I mean is that whatever happens in the next few months will NOT be caused by Harper, but I hope it does fall on him politically. You know, let's not let a crisis go to waste ...

Harper is also trying to deregulate completely tar sand production. The perfect libertarian, you know, something to think about

Samuel

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Steven Harper - not really a LIbertarian
Guardia wrote:

Harper is also trying to deregulate completely tar sand production. The perfect libertarian, you know, something to think about

He doesn't look very  Libertarian (at least not in the Ron Paul/Gary Johnson way).   Fiscally conservative (or at least appearing) but there are very very few Libertarians in governments since large government & Libertarianism are do not meld well.  I suspect he's actually more of a neo-conservative. These links (opinion pieces) seem to agree:

Stephen Harper is not a Libertarian

No room for Libertarians in Harper Conservatism

Steven Harper to Libertarians - You're naive...

Harper, former Libertarian, has just become another statist.

This is definitely not a stance of a Libertarian:

Steven Harper talks about Marijuana

A true Libertarian would say polls don't matter - you can't lead by what a majority of people believe because it means you are generally stomping on someone elses personal liberties when you do so.  A true Libertarian supports the right of the individual to choose how to live their lives as long as they do not directly impinge on anothers right to do the same.

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Re: Steven Harper - not really a LIbertarian

Ah, thanks for clarifying... then I suppose a libertarian wouldn't support the exploitation of oil sands given the harm it causes to people and the environment, right?

Samuel

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A Libertarian would not be involved.
guardia wrote:

then I suppose a libertarian wouldn't support the exploitation of oil sands given the harm it causes to people and the environment, right?

A Liberertarian wouldn't be involved either way.  It is not governments business to be involved in private business.  That means no artificial support or restrictions either way.  So you may say, well that's awful for the people, but it may not really be so, because a Libertarian supports personal rights, which include the right to fight out problems in a court.  So if a business decided that the low EROI of tar sand was acceptable in the first place, and decided to proceed, they would also be responsible for any damage caused that might get them in trouble and bankrupt them later.   Unfortunately we have government stepping in all the time to limit liability and encouraging risky behavior, just look at the Deep Water Horizon incident, had BP not had liability limited to 75 million  you can bet they would be a lot more careful and be carrying insurance.

I suspect if you dig a bit into the tar sands, there is government support (including limiting liability for problems).

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site: A Libertarian would not be involved.
rhare wrote:

A Liberertarian wouldn't be involved either way.  It is not governments business to be involved in private business.  That means no artificial support or restrictions either way.  So you may say, well that's awful for the people, but it may not really be so, because a Libertarian supports personal rights, which include the right to fight out problems in a court.  So if a business decided that the low EROI of tar sand was acceptable in the first place, and decided to proceed, they would also be responsible for any damage caused that might get them in trouble and bankrupt them later.   Unfortunately we have government stepping in all the time to limit liability and encouraging risky behavior, just look at the Deep Water Horizon incident, had BP not had liability limited to 75 million  you can bet they would be a lot more careful and be carrying insurance.

I suspect if you dig a bit into the tar sands, there is government support (including limiting liability for problems).

Great, thanks for the added input!

But there is a problem in the case of tar sands... Most of the damage happens in the north where few people live, and mostly First Nations, further reducing the weight of their voices. If say a few million people are happy about tar sands, and don't care about what happens north, because it's up there where nobody knows what is happening, then ... ? But one day, it will come back to kick us all in the a** when all the oil pools come crashing back in the river.

It's a bit like nuclear power (and possibly climate change)... We know it will happen someday, we just assume it will never happen to us.

Samuel

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Governement versus personal responsibility
guardia wrote:

But there is a problem in the case of tar sands... Most of the damage happens in the north where few people live, and mostly First Nations, further reducing the weight of their voices. If say a few million people are happy about tar sands, and don't care about what happens north, because it's up there where nobody knows what is happening, then ... ? But one day, it will come back to kick us all in the a** when all the oil pools come crashing back in the river.

I guess my question to you would be what do you think would help with your concerns?  My guess is just like here in the US, the government has taken the responsibility to protect citizens  and yet, low and behold, citizens are not protected?  You end up with the risk distributed to taxpayers while profit is given to the few that are connected.  It's that situation that occurs time and again that leads me to believe that government wll never be the answer.  I belive you have to have private ownership so that you have individuals looking out for their own well being, that includes not taking short term gains over long term gains. 

Of course we will always have bad decisions, it's part of the learning experience, but I believe individuals will take far better care of resources as it serves their best interest than a government bureaucrat who has no skin in the game. 

I believe we also have another example of the outcome of the nanny state, "few million people are happy about tar sands, and don't care about what happens north".  Why do you believe that people don't care?  Is it because government has assured the people that they will be taken care of? That the government is looking out for their best interest?  I believe this complacency is very much a result of government lulling it's citizens into a false sense of security.  Most people don't even give a second thought to things like these because they "trust" the government is looking out for their best interest.

Note, it's not that I believe Libertarian ideals are a panacea, just that several simple rules seem to apply:

  1. An individual will in general do what's in their self interest.
  2. Self interest is a competition for resources, and generally means a winner and a loser.
  3. Government simply amplifies the self interest of those in charge.  Rule #1 still applies.

Because of this I believe you are better off having millions looking out for themselves not because bad choices won't be made, but rather they will generally be more limited in scope.  Unfortunately we have taught people for a long time that they don't have to be personally responsible, so I think we will have a difficult adjustment period when government can no longer be the over protective parent due primarily to financial constraints.

 

 

 

 

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Look at the Date...

Report: Bin Laden Already Dead

Wednesday, December 26, 2001

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Usama bin Laden has died a peaceful death due to an untreated lung complication, the Pakistan Observer reported, citing a Taliban leader who allegedly attended the funeral of the Al Qaeda leader.

"The Coalition troops are engaged in a mad search operation but they would never be able to fulfill their cherished goal of getting Usama alive or dead," the source said.

Bin Laden, according to the source, was suffering from a serious lung complication and succumbed to the disease in mid-December, in the vicinity of the Tora Bora mountains. The source claimed that bin Laden was laid to rest honorably in his last abode and his grave was made as per his Wahabi belief.

About 30 close associates of bin Laden in Al Qaeda, including his most trusted and personal bodyguards, his family members and some "Taliban friends," attended the funeral rites. A volley of bullets was also fired to pay final tribute to the "great leader."

The Taliban source who claims to have seen bin Laden's face before burial said "he looked pale ... but calm, relaxed and confident."

Asked whether bin Laden had any feelings of remorse before death, the source vehemently said "no." Instead, he said, bin Laden was proud that he succeeded in his mission of igniting awareness amongst Muslims about hegemonistic designs and conspiracies of "pagans" against Islam. Bin Laden, he said, held the view that the sacrifice of a few hundred people in Afghanistan was nothing, as those who laid their lives in creating an atmosphere of resistance will be adequately rewarded by Almighty Allah.

When asked where bin Laden was buried, the source said, "I am sure that like other places in Tora Bora, that particular place too must have vanished."

 http://www.foxnews.com/story/0,2933,41576,00.html

 

 

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rhare wrote: guardia
rhare wrote:
guardia wrote:

But there is a problem in the case of tar sands... Most of the damage happens in the north where few people live, and mostly First Nations, further reducing the weight of their voices. If say a few million people are happy about tar sands, and don't care about what happens north, because it's up there where nobody knows what is happening, then ... ? But one day, it will come back to kick us all in the a** when all the oil pools come crashing back in the river.

I guess my question to you would be what do you think would help with your concerns?  My guess is just like here in the US, the government has taken the responsibility to protect citizens  and yet, low and behold, citizens are not protected?  You end up with the risk distributed to taxpayers while profit is given to the few that are connected.  It's that situation that occurs time and again that leads me to believe that government wll never be the answer.  I belive you have to have private ownership so that you have individuals looking out for their own well being, that includes not taking short term gains over long term gains. 

Of course we will always have bad decisions, it's part of the learning experience, but I believe individuals will take far better care of resources as it serves their best interest than a government bureaucrat who has no skin in the game. 

I believe we also have another example of the outcome of the nanny state, "few million people are happy about tar sands, and don't care about what happens north".  Why do you believe that people don't care?  Is it because government has assured the people that they will be taken care of? That the government is looking out for their best interest?  I believe this complacency is very much a result of government lulling it's citizens into a false sense of security.  Most people don't even give a second thought to things like these because they "trust" the government is looking out for their best interest.

Note, it's not that I believe Libertarian ideals are a panacea, just that several simple rules seem to apply:

  1. An individual will in general do what's in their self interest.
  2. Self interest is a competition for resources, and generally means a winner and a loser.
  3. Government simply amplifies the self interest of those in charge.  Rule #1 still applies.

Because of this I believe you are better off having millions looking out for themselves not because bad choices won't be made, but rather they will generally be more limited in scope.  Unfortunately we have taught people for a long time that they don't have to be personally responsible, so I think we will have a difficult adjustment period when government can no longer be the over protective parent due primarily to financial constraints.

One of the many problems with libertarianism is the somewhat religious belief that all problems are identified as between private individuals and can be settled by courts.  First, do they really want the enormous expansion of the court system that would be required? Second, as in the case of the tar sands, Canada is a sovereign entity.  The US deciding to be libertarian has no effect on them.  Who in the US would have standing to sue private companies in Canada?  Third, even if, as in the case of acid rain, you can identify a point source of pollution in the rust belt coal fired power plants, how can private property owners in the Adirondac, Green and White mountains sue them for damage to their spruce trees.  How are those trees to be valued in such a system?  How can direct liability be shown for your dead spruce tree?  And, that of course, assumes that a switch over to libertarian principles also means that all currently gov't owned land will be turned over or sold to private owners.  Fourth, in such a system who is going to do the research to find the connections between the burning of fossil fuel and climate change, or acid rain, or smog, or respiratory infections (or any other environmental harm)?  The multinationals certainly won't.  Without gov't sponsorship, research dollars would dry up except for the research that can directly create profits.  As we know, businesses are not in business to protect natural resources.

Ayn Rand can kiss all the filthy smokestacks she wants (as she once advised) but she doesn't want and can't afford to be liable for damages that can best be identified as public in effect.

Doug

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Statistism versus Libertarianism - still missing the point
Doug wrote:

One of the many problems with libertarianism is the somewhat religious belief that all problems are identified as between private individuals and can be settled by courts.  First, do they really want the enormous expansion of the court system that would be required?

Not sure there would be any additional court load.  Everything now contested ends up in the courts anyway.  Also, at least with the courts you have a method to directly approach your grievances.  Right now you are restricted by government in many many ways.  Just look at the agreements that get signed that protect the large corportations over the individual.  We are about to see another in the "robosigning" fiasco.

Doug wrote:

Second, as in the case of the tar sands, Canada is a sovereign entity.  The US deciding to be libertarian has no effect on them.  Who in the US would have standing to sue private companies in Canada?

They wouldn't.  Just as they don't now.  You have to assume that those most directly affected in CA will deal with it.  This issue is no different today that it would be with a more Libertarian slant here in the US.

Doug wrote:

Third, even if, as in the case of acid rain, you can identify a point source of pollution in the rust belt coal fired power plants, how can private property owners in the Adirondac, Green and White mountains sue them for damage to their spruce trees.  How are those trees to be valued in such a system?  How can direct liability be shown for your dead spruce tree?

And right now you have any type of resolution?  I suspect you will have a very very hard time showing any direct damage from say a power plant to your dead spruce tree.

Doug wrote:

assumes that a switch over to libertarian principles also means that all currently gov't owned land will be turned over or sold to private owners

Ahh, the standard, you Libertarians are an all or nothing bunch.  Just stupid arguments.  Most of us are realist and don't expect us to become a Libertarian state overnight - nor would I want that.   You have to take the time to educate citizens.  You have to work on instilling the ideals of personal responsibility back into society.  With liberty also comes that responsibility.  We will have to weem citizens from the nanny state over several generations.   Unfortunately I think we are going to have many "statist" minded folks going cold turkey when economic reality sets in - either that or we will end up in a totalitarian society - my real worry.

Doug wrote:

Fourth, in such a system who is going to do the research to find the connections between the burning of fossil fuel and climate change, or acid rain, or smog, or respiratory infections (or any other environmental harm)?  The multinationals certainly won't.

Individuals and organizations just as it is today.  There are lots of environmental groups tackling these issues: Greenpeace, Sierra Club, etc.  You seem to have this mistaken impression that government is responsible for pushing environmental causes and not just adjusting the playing field to the benefit of the large connected corporation.

Doug wrote:

Without gov't sponsorship, research dollars would dry up except for the research that can directly create profits.  As we know, businesses are not in business to protect natural resources.

Ahh, but without all those taxes paying for  large government, you could actually direct money to organizations you think are worthy. You get the choice.  Also, why do you believe businesses are only money grubbing entities.  I see a lot of businesses making charitable donations.  I guess if you are a person who doesn't want to work and only force others to pay for your idealism, then the current situation is better, however, I would much prefer to direct the results of my labor toward causes I care about.

And finnaly, you really miss the point completely. You as a consumer have the greatest power of all.  You can vote with your money.  You can organize and convince others to do so as well.  That is the largest impact on making a business behave in a socially acceptable manner - far more than any government entity - as you pointed out businesses are in it to make a profit, hence they have a very large motive for not alienating  customers.

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Re: Governement versus personal responsibility
rhare wrote:

Because of this I believe you are better off having millions looking out for themselves not because bad choices won't be made, but rather they will generally be more limited in scope.  Unfortunately we have taught people for a long time that they don't have to be personally responsible, so I think we will have a difficult adjustment period when government can no longer be the over protective parent due primarily to financial constraints.

Thanks again for writing! Interesting things I had not really started to think about... For some reason, when reading the paragraph above, I heard in my mind my mother whisper “small is beautiful“... We really need small and resilient systems before trying to make big ones.

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Small is beautiful, I think your mom is right.
guardia wrote:

We really need small and resilient systems before trying to make big ones.

The bigger the system the less resilient.  If you haven't read "The Black Swan" by Taleb, I highly recommend it.   It covers a lot of the issues about complex systems and how we seem to always believe we understand them more than we do.

If you haven't read Ron Pauls book "The Revolution: A Manifesto" I would also recommend it.  The Libertarian viewpoint is very different from the normal Right / Left discussions we get in the MSM.  Even if you are a die hard Republican or Democrat it will certainly give you an insight into a different way of thinking about the problems than you get elsewhere.  He also advocates small local government where possible, it's fits right in with your small is beautiful comment.

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guardia
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Re: Small is beautiful, I think your mom is right.
rhare wrote:

The bigger the system the less resilient.  If you haven't read "The Black Swan" by Taleb, I highly recommend it.   It covers a lot of the issues about complex systems and how we seem to always believe we understand them more than we do.

If you haven't read Ron Pauls book "The Revolution: A Manifesto" I would also recommend it.  The Libertarian viewpoint is very different from the normal Right / Left discussions we get in the MSM.  Even if you are a die hard Republican or Democrat it will certainly give you an insight into a different way of thinking about the problems than you get elsewhere.  He also advocates small local government where possible, it's fits right in with your small is beautiful comment.

Thanks! I will add those to the top of my to-read list... Compared to the kind of books I have been reading, these will make quite a change, but they seem interesting enough!

Samuel

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