Doug's Darkworld

War, Science, and Philosophy in a Fractured World.


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I didn’t watch the debates. Because the election is so far away I figure some of the candidates will be dead of old age before then. It’s over a year away, and like the Boston Marathon, the starting crowd gets bigger every time. The race is getting tons of coverage, in fact whole networks are devoted to it, and it’s all BS. It’s just a circus to keep us distracted, the POTUS  position is largely ceremonial. I guess I’ve reached peak cynicism. If something really noteworthy happens I’m sure I’ll comment on it, but until then, there’s plenty else to write about besides the forever  campaign. I will be posting my Russiagate post  though, probably later this week.

It’s weird living in a world where politics has been so tied, to, well reality. So that if one expresses a fact, one’s political affiliation is assumed. I don’t think Putin interfered in the 2016 election … so I must be a Trump supporter. I think anthropogenic climate change is both real and serious. I must be some sort of bleeding heart Democrat. Clearly I’m confused? No, just trying to make sense out of it all. And, well, reality doesn’t conform to politics. Doesn’t conform to common sense either. Makes it lots of fun to try and figure out.

So, yeah, the last real progressive national legislation was passed in the sixties. Since then, Democrats have made progressive promises, but been short on follow up. And through it all, by law, by Supreme Court ruling, the corporate/banker rule of America has been reinforced. The GOP does it blatantly, the Dems are more subtle. So even if Bernie or another similar sounding candidate gets elected, I don’t think there is anything they can do. A bloated, corrupt, incompetant aristocracy rules the greatest empire the world has ever seen. The only question is how much richer they will get before it all falls down. What is going to happen when the last dollar in America is deposited in a tax sheltered offshore account? (Hat tip to Jarrod Diamond.)

Speaking of unreal beliefs, came across a you-tube video of tidepools near San Diego. The narrator was saying all these pools were barren, and they used to be thriving with life. OK, well, I guess. He didn’t have any ‘before’ images. And even if they have become lifeless, there are any number of perfectly prosaic reasons for a change. I’m not a marine biologist, but I have had expert classes in geology. Seashores change, any sort of minor change up or down the coast could cause this. So, what’s the big deal?

Well, the big deal is … Fukushima. Yes, Fukushima is dumping 400,000 thousand gallons of radioactive waste into the Pacific each day. And it’s killing the tide pools near San Diego! <Inset new keyboard and bandaged forehead here>  Sigh. And the guy who posted this posted was adamant that it was all “common sense.” I wish people were schooled more in logical fallacies. It would save a lot of time at least.

For the record, yes, Fukushima was a terrible nuclear meltdown. It was also a classic example of human error. It cost Japan a huge pile of money. It probably shortened the lives of hundreds of people. However, outside of the immediate area, the effects are effectively nonexistent. The 400,000 gallons of nuclear waste dumped daily? That’s about 1 ½ Olympic pools worth of slightly Tritium contaminated water. Tritium is a naturally occurring radioactive isotope, and the amount being released is trivial. Calling this water nuclear waste is scaremongering at its worst.

And Fukushima sure as hell isn’t killing tide pools in San Diego! My God, if the water in those tide pools was radioactive enough to sterilize them, the people wading in them would get radiation burns. People would notice. The truth of the matter is, nuclear power is one of the safest and greenest power options. It’s vastly better than coal, to date it’s estimated that nuclear power has saved nearly two million lives by replacing coal plants. Coal power is what’s killing the planet, nuclear power is part of the global warming solution, not part of the problem.

Which doesn’t freaking mean I’m a Trump supporter or I don’t support green power like solar and wind! The more green power the better! But until we utterly decentralize the power grid and cover the planet with batteries to provide power when it’s night and the wind stops, we need 24/7 power plants to fill the gaps. And hands down nuclear is safer and greener than coil/oil/gas plants. End rant.

FWIW, I endorse Bernie Sanders. He’s talking about important issues. Things that, if implemented, will make improvements in the lives of regular Americans. His proposals aren’t even all that radical, but decades of increasingly blind partisanship has made any real debate impossible. Trump made many equally populist promises, if he had been good to his word America might be a better place. He wasn’t, populist promises are about getting votes, period. As Clinton and Obama amply demonstrated.

The image above  I stumbled upon, but it’s an interesting image. The giveaway of public resources started in the 19th century. The railroad land giveaway was the second greatest gift of public resources to corporations in American history. At least they used it to build a railway system that promoted and supported development and industry. It was a big deal at the time as the image shows. The biggest giveaway was in the early 1990s, the digital spectrum giveaway, but no one knows about it since by then the media was owned by the same corporations getting the freebies. Times have changed, and not for the better.

So next post, mutant cats, art on Mars or some such. Have a great holiday week everyone, Americans and Canadians alike.

Copyright © 2019 Doug Stych. All rights reserved.

(Image: Campaign poster from the 1880 presidential campaign. Credit: Democratic Party of 1880, Public Domain under US Copyright Law.)


Written by unitedcats

July 1, 2019 at 2:39 pm

Posted in Elections, Politics, Trump

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