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Everything posted by CokeSnortingTory

  1. You can't have a "solid" set of criteria for giving anyone a perjorative label. Under any circumstances. Appealing to science is especially dubious.
  2. Well this is just a rhetorical device for accusing other people of using a rhetorical device. You can turn this the other way and note that AGW is similar to the various forms of millenarian religion (Christianity, Marxism, Transhumanism) that are the hallmarks of western thought, with its own eschaton (catastrophic climate change) and its own chosen ones (aware environmentalists). That said, it's just another rhetorical device.
  3. This only applies when everything has settled at the lower level. During the period of decline, if it is noticeable in one lifetime or shorter, then the relative difference between current 1st and 3rd world levels does matter. Well, this is what his whole blog is about, so I'm surprised you've missed it. One example he gives is greater emphasis on the domestic economy (which only died in the mid-50's) which is something that flies under the radar of economists. Also, the re-appearance of friendly societies such as the CO-OP, Toc H, the (gulp) Freemasons etc. I dunno, there's a lot of fluff out there - tanning parlours, nail bars, travel agents, accessory shops etc. Also, if the domestic economy re-emerges, then this will also impact small businesses adversely. Should be good for cobblers and hardware stores though. Well this scenario needs Tesco to completely transform itself as an organisation, which it may or may not do. I've mentioned their debt load before - if this kind of change affected their ability to roll over their debts even for a year it would make them vulnerable. The other aspect that needs to be taken into consideration in a peak oil scenario is not just increasing oil prices but spot shortages. Even if Tesco had its own private supply, spot shortages tend to cause chaos as roads are blocked due to tailback queues to garages. It was these that caused the maximum amount of pain during the OPEC crisis in the 1970's. A country like Russia or Saudia Arabia, which is receiving constant bids for oil can switch supplies away whenever they feel like it. This is what will do for major organisations, rather than price per se.
  4. But we don't definitively know. And our theories could, of course, change. I'm brilliant at this sort of thing.
  5. Well major changes in the Earth's climate aren't necessarily due to those kind of extreme events. If I was the kind of person who resorted to cheap rhetorical devices, I'd be tempted to accuse you of deploying a straw man there. And how do you know that AGW is going to be "disastrous"? I tend to suspect AGW supporters use CO2 levels the same way economists use interest rates - as a kind of binary stop/go device from which all subsequent activity can be predicted.
  6. I think this is simply a semantic point, as he means that current "1st world" wages will decline to 3rd world levels, so there will be an evening out - not that there will still be a 1st and 3rd world that can be compared. It depends on how many labourers there are compared to land/resources. Also a great many trades will simply disappear - much less finance, consumer services etc. Historically the labour power of workers waxes and wanes. Plagues tend to be very positive in this regard. I don't understand what the shareholder value would be in Tesco's doing any of this.
  7. Yes, but the underlying assumption here is "all things being equal" - but as the Earth has seen huge extremes of temperature variation without the influence of manmade CO2 production, I don't think that assumption is necessarily valid.
  8. Well, the key words here are "in principle". Ultimately the greater the number of inputs you have, the greater the number of potential outcomes, so in practical terms, prediction is impossible. This is why I find AGW far less convincing than Peak Oil, where we can actually track depletion vs. new discoveries and predict the trend.
  9. I used to design the combustion systems of diesel engines from air and exhaust flow models. They were only occasionally accurate.
  10. Not really, because the possible outcomes are fairly limited for stars, but pretty much unlimited for climatological changes.
  11. No, this is nonsense. Human beings cannot predict the future behaviour of complex systems like the climate, which is nothing like the standard life cycles of stars. The nearest analogy I can think of as a complex system is the global economy, which of course we also cannot predict using models and theory. Which isn't to say that AGW is or isn't happening, just that we greatly overestimate our competence as a species.
  12. I think the OP was chucking out a big number for rhetorical effect, rather than actually quoting a scientific paper.
  13. Here's a book you might like: http://www.amazon.co.uk/Scientific-Irrationalism-Origins-Postmodern-Cult/dp/1412806461/ref=sr_1_4?ie=UTF8&s=books&qid=1274688160&sr=1-4
  14. I can't see anything that you've said here that actually conflicts with what The Archdruid is saying. He does mention the culture and psyche of the people in that they will continue along the tried-and-tested path of ever-greater complexity until they can't. After that, they will homeostatically step down to lower levels of complexity. He's not advocating the overnight abandonment of technology, just the gradual re-adoption of older technologies where appropriate, and greater use of human labour where energy-driven machinery is no longer economical. You can argue that he's completely wrong because of potential new energy sources and new technologies such as biotech etc. (which means believing the claims of research scientists in their ever more precarious search for investment capital), but I think his analysis of devolution is pretty sound.
  15. This is such a load of infinity-worshipping ********. Once more, to the archdruid: http://thearchdruidreport.blogspot.com/2010/04/twilight-of-machine.html
  16. For investors (or gamblers, as I like to call them).
  17. Could be disastrous to the operating companies if the oil price significantly rises and traffic plummets. (which is what I'm expecting).
  18. But will these be the kind of people who are let go? When the cuts arrive, those who are to be made redundant will be assessed by triage, as with the private sector.
  19. Actually there are quite a few people in the civil service who are skilled in other trades, but went into the CS because it payed better, or had better hours, or was less hassle. For example, I know a chap who now has his own plumbing business, but who used to work in the passport office. These are the kind of people who will affect the labour market for certain skills, rather than the norks with 4K civil service training in recognising diversity etc.
  20. There are those who believe that schools actually have a negative effect on children's ability to learn. One of them was this fellow: http://www.amazon.co.uk/Deschooling-Society-Open-Forum-Illich/dp/0714508799/ref=sr_1_1?ie=UTF8&s=books&qid=1274614712&sr=1-1
  21. As long as they can't design diesel engines, I'll be fine.
  22. It's the equivalent value in turnips they should care about, because if their predictions come true, that's what they'll be exchanging it for.
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