Congrat to YOUR President NOT!

Discussion in 'Fred's House of Pancakes' started by Jeri, Nov 7, 2004.

  1. Jeri

    Jeri New Member

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    Your president has insisted he will not limit any green house gases despite the information furnished by 300 intelligent scientitsts in the US and seven other nations. Too bad these instantaneous catastrophe movies aren't for real. Science Digest, Scientific American and several other good magazines have charted the rapid climate change which could occur over 2-8 years. The line on one of the move trailers "what have we ever done to Mother Nature" is laughable. Sure would be nice if the White House could get caught in that mythical tidal wave.
     
  2. skruse

    skruse Senior Member

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    The Bush administration assumes greenhouse gases and climate change are "externalities." A rhetorical way of saying, I don't want to acknowledge the responsibility or cost, even though I (we) are the cause. While at the same time "the" solution to energy and economics is more extraction. "If it ain't broke, don't fix it." A classic case of tragedy of the commons where everyone derives benefits and no one accepts responsibility.

    As short-term thinkers and actors, politicians specialize in political expediency. Bush, et al. feel no need for sustainability. More is always better - the illusion of growth without consequences.

    As Amory Lovins and the Rocky Mountain Institute clearly point out, if you want to double your profit, double your efficiency. Bush is a short-term thinker and actor, with no concern for anything long-term. Anyone who questions his position is labeled "liberal," "antiamerican," "subversive" or some other ambiguous term.

    We need good leadership with long-term, responsible vision. Actions speak louder than words.
     
  3. jchu

    jchu New Member

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    Just a question to fuel the fires of this thread.

    So when did "liberal" come to be recast as a bad word and why?
     
  4. john1701a

    john1701a Prius Guru

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    When has not even trying ever been a good choice?

    And this administration is even worse. Rather than just ignoring the problem, they are actually lifting restrictions.

    The "snowmobiles in national parks" issue is a great example. To reduce emissions & noise, a regulation to enforce cleaner & quieter snowmobiles was overturned. That hurt the manufacturers. They had a brand new generation of snowmobile ready to help with that cause. Yes, they cost more. But just like with a similar issue for jetski sales, a side benefit of reduced emissions & noise was increased power.

    Remember, seasonal recreational vehicles are a hard sell in the first place. The fact that a regulation carefully written to benefit everyone like that takes a lot of work. To have an administration simply flush that effort down the toilet is disgusting. Yet, they did it anyway.

    And they are pulling the same crap with hybrids too. Rather than backing the CARB effort, they helped to fight it. They also sabotaged the effort by endorsing fuel-cells and pushing for more oil drilling instead.

    We need to make sure this doesn't continue. And we can do it without upsetting anyone either. Just politely show off your Prius to everyone that gives any hint of interest. That desire to know more, once you've kindled that spark, is all it will take to build a big fire.
     
  5. Wolfman

    Wolfman New Member

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    John, I've been following the snowmobile thing now for several years, as it is one of my "pet issues". It was the Clinton administration that set up a total ban of the activity within Yellowstone, and Grand Teton National Parks.

    It was the Bush administration that overturned that ban, and allowed for continued snowmobiling within the parks. One of the changes included the continued banning of two stroke snowmobiles in favor of four stroke powered units that met specific criteria to be allowed in the park.

    It was then the environmentalist groups that went berzerk in the courts, filing numerous lawsuits to have the original ban reinstated, despite hard data coming in that proved the new machines were 90% cleaner than the old ones, and a timetable for the EPA to further expand on these numbers over the next what would now be 7 years. One of Kerry's promises, was to reinstate that ban. IMO, this is one of the areas where Bush has actually been doing the right thing - finding some common ground that answered to a problem, without causing serious economic damage to the surrounding area.
     
  6. john1701a

    john1701a Prius Guru

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    Locally, the snowmobile manufacturer here (Polaris) wasn't pleased. They were ready to serve that happy medium.

    Extremes are bad. That's why this current administration pushed to make people believe that Kerry was an extreme. And technically, they were correct... in comparison to them. But in reality, no. He was just left of the middle. They are the further to the right.

    Nonetheless, the point is the same. We should have tried.

    The ban was just as extreme as not doing anything at all.

    And that's where Prius comes it. The HSD technology is proving a very practical solution. You actually can have your cake and eat it too.
     
  7. DaveinOlyWA

    DaveinOlyWA 3rd Time was Solariffic!!

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    i agree with you John, extremes are bad. but change is necessary in order to prosper and grow. but we as a society oppose change until we are forced into a change much greater than we are comfortable with.

    it is rare that a change that is moderate and easily digestible comes along that is truly beneficial and effective.

    the Prius is one of the best examples if not THE best example of a gradual change effected nearly flawlessly.

    the only real downer to Toyota is the complete miss on the supply issues. although they were confident of a great product, i think the demand took them completely by surprise.

    but even for a group of people (us) sometimes a good thing is just too obvious and good to ignore.
     
  8. skruse

    skruse Senior Member

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    Snowmobiles and other motorized vehicles are no longer recreational "toys." These are serious, high-powered vehicles. Air quality is severely impacted where "recreational" vehicles are used. Just ask the rangers who staff the entrance stations on the western boundary of, and within, Yellowstone Natl Park. Snowmobile violations of wildlands are increasing everywhere. The biggest increase in avalanche deaths is with snowmobilers attempting "high-marking," then attempting to outrun the avalanche once the snow cuts loose (Source: current and past issues of the Avalanche Review, journal of the American Avalanche Association).

    National Parks and wilderness areas are those few enclaves where natural processes are to be sustained. Artificial noise, hydrocarbon emissions, particulate matter, snow compaction and wildlife harrassment are not an acceptable part of wildlands. The usual argument is "most users are respectful and only a few renegades" spoil the reputation of the many. A major problem with compromises, is that every time, the environment continues to lose. Those expecting sustainable long-term programs and policies are labeled "extremists" while short-term thinking and political expediency are labeled as "moderate" or "midstream."

    The problem is that it is too easy for the uneducated and uncaring to substitute oil for knowledge and adversely impact the many. Winter wildlands are accessible, with minimal impact on skis and snowshoes without the noise and use of oil.

    A positive attribute of the Prius is that we get to model what we teach - quiet, efficiency, constructive alternatives, and long-term "pay-it-forward" thinking.
     
  9. TonyPSchaefer

    TonyPSchaefer Your Friendly Moderator
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    Just throwing in my two cents' worth. I neither own nor drive seasonal recreational vehicles. I saw a Dateline a couple years ago detailing all the pollutants being released into Minnesota lakes by out-of-staters who have built recreational homes there. The conclusion of the report was that they were destryoing the very beauty of the state that attracted them in the first place.
     
  10. john1701a

    john1701a Prius Guru

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    <div class='quotetop'>QUOTE(skruse\";p=\"49041)</div>
    I was totally blown away when I found that out. While cruising along on a highway, one of those powermobiles flew past me in the snow covered ditch. Seeing that power was suprising, but the amazing part is that anyone would go that quickly on rough terrain in the dark. Are they nuts!?!

    Anywho, slowing down does have its rewards. In fact, some times you don't have to be moving at all. This evening's NORTHERN LIGHTS display was quite impressive, large bands of rapidly swaying green waves against the dark cloudless sky. I just stood there in the dark observing that natural wonder.
     
  11. daniel

    daniel Cat Lovers Against the Bomb

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    The country is like a canoe headed toward a cataclysmic waterfall. The Republicans are shouting, "Stay the course! Stay the course! The river continues flat forever." The Democrats are shouting, "Hey, there's a waterfall up ahead. Maybe we should paddle towards it just a little bit slower."

    I think that anyone who thinks Kerry would have solved anything is deluded. He just would have run us into the waterfall a little bit slower than Bush.

    Saving our society from catastrophe would require a complete overhaul in our economic model. We'd have to recognize that the profit motive itself is often shamefully destructive. We'd have to accept that urban sprawl and gas-guzzling vehicles and petroleum-based industry and agriculture are not sustainable. We'd have to recognize that individuals have a responsibility to society and that large nations have a reponsibility to smaller ones. We'd have to give up our freedom to waste resources, and nations would have to give up some of their sovereignty in the global effort to reach sustainability.

    Neither the Democrats nor the Republicans are going to accept these things. But at present they and their backers completely control the electoral process. That's why I don't believe voting will change anything. I think grass-roots organizing is our best hope. But even that is a pretty thin hope.
     
  12. efusco

    efusco Moderator Emeritus
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    <div class='quotetop'>QUOTE(john1701a\";p=\"49061)</div>
    They were even visible down here in Southwest Missouri. Not nearly as well defined or as bright as they were in AK, but you could see the glow and shifting of the light and the color of the sky to the North...made me pine to be back in AK.... :cry:
     
  13. bruceha_2000

    bruceha_2000 Senior Member

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    <div class='quotetop'>QUOTE(Jeri\";p=\"49007)</div>
    The purported reason Bush is against the Kyoto treaty is because it would cost American jobs. Now why that is, I do not know. Seems like there would be a lot of jobs developing. manufacturing and installing cleaner equipment or scrubbers. The whole idea of "countries who produce less pollutants than their quota can sell their excess to big polluters" is a 2 edged sword.
     
  14. Wolfman

    Wolfman New Member

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  15. V8Cobrakid

    V8Cobrakid Green Handyman

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    I like your example of a canoe going over a waterfall. However i think you look past the point that we require gradual change. Pulling our entire system over and giving it an overhaul would never work. However slowing our bad habits down just a little bit gives us a whole lot of time as people to look at things and understand more. Look how many people found a prius as a car and now are more informed about he world. All of these people were "helped" within a years time. It's the little things that counted when it comes to Kerry. We understood that. We did not expect any miracles. A lot of us expected him to be almost as bad as Bush. We also knew that no matter what, he wasn't bush and would not be as bad as him.

    Our HSD system only increases gas mileage about 20%? well.. we are already driving a fuel efficient car. some ask why we didn't just throw this system into an SUV. Simple.. we wanted to feel the change a little more. It's a tiny step, but it's also providing a whole new platform of every car increasing at least a few mpg.

    So again.. Kerry.. we could see the little things that we valued that would help this world environmentally and not economically. The way i see it.. he would be helping to secure our future economically. Bush is going to drill till gas prices are too expensive to drive. By the way, everything else will be too expensive at that point too. Currently we use oil for everything we do.
     
  16. Sun__Tzu

    Sun__Tzu New Member

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    One of the recent left-wing documentaries that came out, The Corporation, had an interesting interview along these lines. The man was a commodities trader who said that if clean air and clean water were commodities, then people, traders and markets would care much more about them. But since they're not tradable commodities, these things rank far behind extracted minerals, fossil fuels and such. I think it was a really interesting point.

    Since the Kyoto treaty is already outdated, Bush would do well to show some of his alleged leadership skills, and lead the way in crafting the next generation global warming protocol.
     
  17. daniel

    daniel Cat Lovers Against the Bomb

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    I think that part of the problem is that a lot of people just do not believe that natural resources, and the ability of the planet to absorb pollutants, are finite. And a lot of others (including elderly decision-makers) believe that the collapse won't come in their own lifetimes. "Why should I change my way of life just so somebody else's grandkids can have a life worth living?"

    Personally, I think that a sustainable, cooperative economy (as opposed to our present growth-based and competitive economy) would mean an improved quality of life for all of us. But my measure of quality of life includes many non-economic factors. In this I differ from the mainstream.
     
  18. bruceha_2000

    bruceha_2000 Senior Member

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    Not to be arguementative, but how that is different from the current situation? All kinds of jobs lost to 'low cost' countries. Some are cheap because of lax environmental rules, some because of cheap labor. Some are both.
     
  19. DaveinOlyWA

    DaveinOlyWA 3rd Time was Solariffic!!

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    this year the world will consume 4.3 billion barrels of oil. that number is increasing rapidly every year.

    can we go on like this?

    i doubt it.
     
  20. KMO

    KMO Member

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    The whole effing point is SETTING AN EXAMPLE.

    Do you think it is more likely that China etc can be negotiated with to impose emissions controls if

    (a) the US refuses to sign up because they reckon they're too powerful to deal in piddling international treaties; OR

    (B) the US signs up to mutually binding treaties that force better behaviour on everyone, to everyone's net benefit?

    Kyoto is a first step. If Bush wants to avoid scupper that first step, what's his plan to get to the second step?

    Repeat the same basic argument as required for nuclear weapons, land mines, international criminal courts, the UN, non-militarisation of space, chemical weapons, biological weapons, the Geneva convention, the anti-ballistic missile treaty, etc etc etc

    Is it any wonder that international polls cite the USA as the number 1 threat to world peace?
     
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