Category Archives: Misc.

Bits and Pieces – 20190207, Thursday – The Standard Model Part II

Commentary

I had a short conversation with a friend recently in which I voiced the opinion that the Harper conservatives in Canada were successful because they moved from the political right to the center. The Liberals were forced to share the left with the NDP, Green party and the Communists. The conservatives had no one right of them so they held the largest territory.

The Liberals appear to be doing it again. Their policies and financial management are increasingly what might have been identified with the left – broadly termed socialism. If their is anyone in the conservative party in Ottawa that is alive from the neck up, this might be the chance they need to regain power. At the least, if they can avoid shooting themselves in the foot as conservatives are prone to do, they may simply fall into a return to power.

But this is based on old school thinking. The problem is I don’t know where the center is today. In fact the Liberals may be right in the middle of it. Millennials and the emerging gen zeros may naturally be centered well to the left by an education system and media that has held that ground for the last fifty years or more. These generations appear to be sufficiently dumbed down and captivate by digital toys and social media that hey are incapable of critical thought and analysis.

Canada cannot survive as a sovereign nation, another four years of increasing socialism, economically, culturally or socially. Bringing a million immigrants into a moribund economy with a government whose spending is out of control will place our standard of living on a path convergent with the third world.

In the US, AOC has emerged as the darling of the Democrats. And they are not opposing her policies which are straight out of Looney Tunes: Green New Deal: “Air Travel Stops Becoming Necessary”. This is socialism moving into communism. As a rule of thumb I like to think that Canada lags the US by about three years. Will the last one to leave the room please turn out the lights.

Bits and Pieces – 20190118, Friday – The Standard Model Part I

Commentary

Although I write these blog articles in part to capture links and comments for future reference, in practice I find it difficult to find things for retrieval. There is a theme that has been part of my writing for a while and that is the idea of narratives that dominate our thinking. For myself, if I collect them together, they compose what I have come to call my standard model. I will begin to develop these ideas under the topic “Musings” and will tag the progression of my thinking in the blog article title starting with this one.

Bits and Pieces – 20181231, Monday

Commentary

I have had my new system for several days and am still cleaning up issues around the transfer of operations from my old system. Some of the software that I was running is so old it either will not install on the new system running Windows 10 or problems exist with the re-installation. For example, I have a purchased copy of Adobe Reader 7.0 (yes that’s old). The procedure to move it would be to uninstall it on the old system and reinstall it on the new system. Except that the uninstall/reinstall process is controlled by a server run by Adobe for this purpose but they recently shut the server down (surely it doesn’t cost that much to leave a computer running in a closet somewhere) so the transfer can’t be done. Like many big companies such as Microsoft you cannot speak to a live support person unless you buy a support plan. So it is an issue I am still working on.

There is a problem with the mail system that keeps triggering a block on my ISP server account and I’ve spent an hour or two trying to get the new system on the same home network as Mary’s two laptops and my old system with no luck yet. There are a few minor issues that remain which I can live with until I find the fix such as every hour my new system suddenly announces the time. Try figuring out where in the Windows 10 interface the control for that feature lies.

As a final comment I am introducing a new heading – “Spotlight”. Almost every week some story stands out for me and I usually talk about it in this section, but it doesn’t feel like a perfect fit.

Here’s wishing you a happy, prosperous and joy-filled new year. I hope to get things back on track. Ian.

Bits and Pieces – 20181223, Sunday

Commentary

Once again the YouTube algos served up a delicious commentary on US – China trade negotiations that included reference to the arrest of Meng Wanzhou, CFO of Huawei, by Canada. At 28:25 minutes it is a highly recommended view as the interview has a lineup of 4 excellent experts discussing the trade war:

A key point is that Meng’s detention has become a hostage taking due to Trump’s politicization of the event (if it wasn’t that right from the start).

Bits and Pieces – 20181220, Thursday

Commentary

Continuing system instability causing loss of video and the internet due to mainboard problems has resulted in the loss of a body of text that I had assembled around the arrest of Huawei CFO, Meng Wanzhou and other topics.

Initially I considered that Meng’s arrest was illegal and was puzzled that a local crown attorney could arbitrarily execute it. It must go deeper suggesting that some level of government would be involved. As a friend observed and subsequent reading confirmed that the arrest and detention of suspects for which there is an outstanding warrant in the US is a matter of existing treaty or understanding. Still, an arrest of this significance had to be cleared at the highest level of the Canadian government.

I had gathered some links to the blow-back on Canada which are now lost but they involve the detention by the Chinese of two Canadians (three as I get ready to publish) and the loss of the Chinese market to Canada Goose clothing company. One source has suggested that the extradition of Meng could take years. Such happens when illegal aliens in this country who commit crimes, are almost impossible to be deport. Should the deportation occur quickly it would throw big questions at the Canadian judicial system. In any case, trying to write a rational analysis of a situation dependent on what is gleaned from visible sources is fraught with problems. So here are two analyses by other sources that are worth reading if the topic interests you:.

The first is Larry Lindsey: Something About The Huawei CFO Arrest Doesn’t Make Sense and the second is The Trade War Distraction: Huawei And Linchpin Theory.

Bits and Pieces – 20181209, Sunday

Commentary

It’s 3:20 AM Monday morning and I can’t sleep. Apart from the fact that my ancient thermostat settings have not dropped the daytime high of 65 degrees (it predates metric conversion) to 62 degrees where I would like it, the Liberal carbon tax is bothering me. And it should also be bothering you very much.

Two weeks ago (Bits and Pieces – 20181125, Sunday) I opened with a discouce on energy and the universal requirement of it in some form by all organism both living and inanimate such as cities. What I didn’t do was to reduce all forms of energy to a common unit of measurement which is popularly, the joule. We measure the energy content of food in calories which are easily converted to joules. Electricity we measure in watts which also convert easily. Heat energy from burning fossil fuels is directly measured in joules.

What I will now argue is that you have a minimal energy footprint which if not met for a period of time will result in your death. There is a daily calorie requirement below which you will certainly starve to death. How far below this limit determines how fast death comes. The production of those calories requires a certain amount of fossil fuel to grow them. A farmer has to drive a tractor over a field multiple times to till and prepare a seedbed, plant the seeds, apply fertilizers and agricultural chemicals (to kill everything but the crop) and to harvest the crop. That’s a lot of diesel. Add in the energy required to get the food to your table. So just in terms of food, there is a significant amount of fossil fuel expenditure necessary to keep yoy from starving.

Likewise, in Northern latitudes, there is a minimum temperature at which you can maintain your environment before you freeze to death or die of hypothermia (read: Britain’s Excess Winter Deaths Soar To Highest In Over 40 Years).

A more complex argument in details is the need for fossil fuels to support your daily life including getting to and from work so you can pay for the joules you need to survive. Renewables aren’t the answer because they are not a reliable source of energy when you need it and will never be for certain applications like farming. This is another discussion but it involves something called capacity factor which the Ontario government now hides. Or in other words, behind every wind mill lurks a gas-fired thermal plant.

The point is that you have a minimum carbon footprint below which you die. Cities have a minimum carbon footprint below which the city dies.

Bits and Pieces – 20181202, Sunday

Commentary

I was going to slot this under Social Collapse but instead I’m featuring this article because it is at once astounding, insightful into our culture and profoundly disturbing: Watch What Happens When A Baby That Is Addicted To A Cellphone Has It Taken Away. Note that the mother thinks that this is funny and a search in YouTube finds the video in Best funny baby video compilation of 2015. Here’s just the video:

A real hoot.

By the way, if you know someone who might be interested in my letter, please pass it on. They can email me (see End Notes) requesting inclusion on my mailing list.

Bits and Pieces – 20181125, Sunday

Commentary

I’m adding a new topic – Energy. I work from a topic template structure with 36 topics arranged in 3 levels of detail breakdown. In choosing to add another, I reviewed all topics and sub-topics and found none that I wanted to delete. Many are not currently of active interest but could find an entry at any time. Often, an article that I wish to include spans diverse topics and it can be a challenge figuring out where to slot it in. So why energy now? Here are some collected thoughts.

Bits and Pieces – 20181118, Sunday

Correction

An alert German reader kindly pointed out an error that I had made in the Climate section of my last post (now corrected). I had written:
Here is the actual discussion of the error: Nick Stokes on A major problem with the Resplandy et al. ocean heat uptake paper and here is a followup article by the same author…

In fact both articles were written by Nic Lewis. I have no idea how or why I inserted the name “Nick Stokes”.

Commentary

When I mentioned to a friend that the caravan invading the US’s southern border is well-funded, well-planned and highly organized by some external organization(s) she said she hadn’t heard of such a thing.

So here’s the evidence. In a Fox News video, Tucker Carlson interviews filmmaker Ami Horowitz who embedded himself in the caravan and filmed aspects of it:

Exercise

This topic is part of a series of health-related topics with a focus on anti-aging. Most of the source material comes from a weekly eletter from the economist Patrick Cox who has an investment advisory service for the biotechnology field with Mauldin Economics.

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