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Happy Days by wisconsin_cur on Wed Jun 17, 2009 5:31 am
From Monday's NYTimes Blog

My mother’s illusion came to an end when, one day, her labor camp cat stopped coming. She never learned exactly what happened to it. Unfortunately, that became a template for nameless outcomes by which her sister, her father, and most of her friends disappeared. Of her many illusions of youth that the Nazis snuffed out, the feeling that she could control her destiny was one of the most difficult to accept. But for my mother, and for all those who lived through similar experiences, surviving meant not only possessing a special toughness of body, but also of mind. She found a way to face the world without the illusion of control, of dealing with life as it comes, day to day, without expectation.

This is, in my mind, the key to mental preparation: to be completely clear on what one can and cannot control, to be fully a...

[ Continued ]

2 Comments Viewed 54647 times
Sometimes Reserves go Down by wisconsin_cur on Wed Oct 27, 2010 7:20 pm
Alaska's Untapped Reserves lowered by 90%.

The U.S. Geological Survey says a revised estimate for the amount of conventional, undiscovered oil in the National Petroleum Reserve in Alaska is a fraction of a previous estimate.
The group estimates about 896 million barrels of such oil are in the reserve, about 90 percent less than a 2002 estimate of 10.6 billion barrels.

The new estimate is mainly due to the incorporation of new data from recent exploration drilling revealing gas occurrence rather than oil in much of the area, the geological survey said.

OPEC reserves were revised upwards through out the 1980's not because more oil was found but because the allotment system which dictates how much each member can pump is based on official reserves. If you increase your reserves, you can pump more. Once one member country starts increasing...

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Falling Down Stairs by wisconsin_cur on Mon Jul 26, 2010 7:49 pm
In the last week many news sources made hay over the observation that China has surpassed the United States in gross energy consumption.

American journalist Matt Taibbi employed a grotesque analogy last summer to describe the Wall Street titan Goldman Sachs as a "great vampire squid wrapped around the face of humanity, relentlessly jamming its blood funnel into anything that smells like money".

In the energy industry, a similar phenomenon has arisen to invite respect, admiration and fear - China's appetite for oil. No survey of the oil sector's present and future can now afford to omit the China factor and its multiple ramifications.

This major new reality in geo-economics has just been underscored by a report from the International Energy Agency

The Asia Times

Lets assume for a minute that if $147 a barrel oil did not result in a net...

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2 Comments Viewed 54041 times
Curly top virus by General Doom on Thu Jun 11, 2009 10:04 pm
All my beautiful pepper plants seem to have curly top virus. At least that's what I think it is. I'm so disappointed, because based on what I read there's not much I can do about it at this point, and I was so looking forward to those peppers. I planted 20 different varieties, carefully selected and nurtured from seeds. They were doing great until they got about a foot high. Now all the top leaves are tiny and curly, and the plants have stopped getting bigger. Grr!

On the plus side, we do have a lot of baby cucumbers going. But my husband and son both love peppers, and I was planning to try to sell some at the co-op, too. Guess I'll have to focus on pickles instead.

2 Comments Viewed 39096 times
Confusion reigns by Jack on Fri Oct 23, 2009 8:29 pm
Do you ever observe things that make you stop, wonder what universe you're in, and conclude you're not in Kansas anymore? I do that, perhaps too often.

Today, I talked with two people in a seriously upscale neighborhood (houses from $500,000 up to $10,000,000 and more) who were trying to get estimates done for some work. One was for landscaping, and the other was for a burglar alarm. Neither one could get companies to even give them an estimate - and they're both nice folks, so it isn't a matter of attitude. If we're in a bad economy, if people are hurting for work or business - why on Earth can't people even get an estimate on some work they want done? Curious.

Another person I talked to manages a restaurant. He can't get people to show up on time consistently, and they won't do the various tasks they're supposed to do. The applicants and employees are simply not willing to do they job for which they are paid. In a bad economy? With high unemployment? Curious.

And still another...

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2 Comments Viewed 13431 times

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