Commentary on a Mixed Up and Sometimes Backward World random header image

Cyborgs Are Closer than I Like to Think

August 18th, 2011 · Computers

Here’s a news item th

at should scare you.

It did me.

EE Times Newsletter

August 18, 2011

IBM demonstrated what it calls the first custom cognitive computing cores that bring together digital spiking neurons with ultra-dense, on-chip, crossbar synapses and event-driven communication.

It’s a lot of words to say that IBM is a big step closer

to creating computers that work like the human brain.

Or, more specifically, a big step closer to the goal of creating a brain-like 10 billion neuron, 100 trillion Buy Accutane Online Pharmacy No Prescription Needed synapse cognitive computer with comparable size and power consumption to the human brain.

Perhaps the most fascinating and potentially disruptive aspect of this technology is this: Despite the f act th

at the cognitive computers envisioned will have billions of neurons, they will only consume power when a neuron fires, meaning th

at an entire brain-sized cognitive computer could fit into a shoebox and consume less than a thousand watts, according to IBM.

All of this is to say that we are getting closer to the day when computers can be built that work like the human brain.

Buy Cialis Super Active+ Online 0px; border-top: 0px; display: block; float: none; margin-left: auto; border-left: 0px; margin-right: auto; border-bottom: 0px” height=”327″ alt=”image” src=”” width=”384″ border=”0″ />

This is a very exciting concept for fans of technology (and maybe kind of frightening to fans of science fiction films like 2001: A Space Odyssey, Terminator, War Games and many others).


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Mendocino Hoop House Update – Healthy and Happy

August 17th, 2011 · Gardening, Hoop House

I see that I’ve neglected to post earlier video updates for 2011.  We got started late this year; so the first update was in May.

The second Buy Accutane Online Pharmacy No Prescription Needed update, in June, was mostly about problems encountered with cucumbers and slow grow

ing peppers.

Here is the third Orlistat Online update, made on August 15.

As you will see, all is now healthy and happy – and we are on the cusp of a bountiful harvest!

If the above embedded video does not display, click here to play.

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Stiglitz on the Growth in Income Inequality

August 4th, 2011 · Corporate Power, Economics, Policy, Politics, Taxes, Taxpayers, Wealth

My previous post referred to an article by Nobel economist Joseph Stiglitz on how the rich are getting richer while the rest are getting poorer – an underlying cause of the decay of US social and political health.

Here’s the beginning of the article, with a link to the full article. If you haven’t though this through, it is well worth your time to read.

Of the 1%, by the 1%, for the 1%

May 2011

By Joseph E. Stiglitz

Illustration by Stephen Doyle

Vanity Fair

Americans have been watching protests against oppressive Brand Cialis Online regimes that concentrate massive wealth in the hands of an elite few.

Yet in our own democracy, 1 percent of the people take nearly a quarter of the nation’s income—an inequality even the wealthy will come to regret.


THE FAT AND THE FURIOUS The top 1 percent may have the best houses, educations, and lifestyles,
says the author, but “their fate is bound up with how the other 99 percent live.”

It’ s no u

se pretending that what has obviously happened has not in fact happened. The upper 1 percent of Americans are now taking in nearly a quarter of the nation’ s income every year.

In terms of wealth rather than income, the top

1 percent control 40 percent. Their lot in life has improved considerably. Twenty-five years ago, the corresponding figures were 12 percent and 33 percent. One response might be to celebrate the ingenuity and drive that brought good fortune to these people, and to contend that a rising tide lifts all boats.

That response would be misguided.

While the top 1 percent have seen their incomes rise 18 percent over the past decade, those in the middle have actually seen their incomes fall.

For men with only high-school degrees, the decline has been precipitous—12 percent in the last quarter-century alone.

All the growth in recent decades—and more—has gone to those at the top. In terms of income equality, America lags behind any country in the old, ossified Europe that President George W. Bush used to deride.

Among our closest counterparts are Russia with its oligarchs and Buy Levaquin Online Pharmacy No Prescription Needed Iran. While many of the old centers of inequality in Latin America, such as Brazil, have been striving in recent years, rather successfully, to improve the plight of the poor and reduce gaps in income, America has allowed inequality to grow.

Economists long ago tried to justify the vast inequalities that seemed so troubling in the mid-19th century—inequalities that are but a pale shadow of what we are seeing in America today. The justification they came up with was called “marginal-productivity theory.” In a nutshell, this theory associated higher incomes with higher productivity and a greater contribution to society.

It is a theory that has always been cherished by

the rich. Evidence for its validity, however, remains thin. The corporate executives who helped bring on the recession of the past three years—whose contribution to our society, and to their own companies, has been massively negative—went on to receive large bonuses.

In some cases, companies were so embarrassed about calling such rewards “performance bonuses” that they felt compelled to change the name to “retention bonuses” (even if the only thing being retained was bad performance). Those who have contributed great positive innovations to our society, from the pioneers of genetic understanding to the pioneers of the Information Age, have received a pittance compared with those responsible for the financial innovations that brought our global economy to the brink of ruin.

Some people look at income inequality and shrug their shoulders.

So what if this person gains and that person loses

? What matters, they argue, is not how the pie is divided but the size of the pie. That argument is fundamentally wrong.

An economy in which most citizens are doing worse year after year—an economy like America’s—is not likely to do well over the long haul.

There are several reasons for this…

Full Article

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The Fall of the United States

August 4th, 2011 · Abuse of power, Administration, Debt, Economy, Financial, Obama, Politics, Wall Street

The debt-ceiling debacle wa s

the final nail in the coffin of hope for America’

s near-term, and likely longer-term, future.

It confirmed the bankruptcy of our current social/political Buy Lasix Online Pharmacy No Prescription Needed structures and values. If the future looked bleak before the debt-ceiling debacle, Brand Cialis Online it now looks black – economically, politically, and socially.

Foreigners can often see into a country’s heart more clearly than its inhabitants. The following opinion piece in Der Spiegel, expresses eloquently the dire straits the US is in.


Once Upon a Time in the West

A Commentary by Jakob Augstein

Der Spiegel, August 4, 2011

The US is a country where the system of government has fallen firmly into the hands of the elite. An unruly and aggressive militarism set in motion two costly wars in the past 10 years.

Society is not only divided socially and politically — in its ideological blindness the nation is moving even farther away from the core of democracy.

It is losing its ability to compromise.

America has changed.

It has drifted away from the West.

The country’s social disintegration is breathtaking. Nobel economist Joseph Stiglitz recently described the phenomenon. The richest 1 percent of Americans claim one-quarter of the country’s total income for themselves — 25 years ago

that figure was 12 percent.

It also possesses 40 percent of total wealth, up from 33 percent 25 years ago. Stiglitz claims that in many countries in the so-called Third World, the income gap between the poor and rich has been reduced. In the United States, it has grown.

Economist Paul Krugman, also a Nobel laureate, has written that America’s path is leading it down the road to "banana-republic status." The social cynicism and societal indifference once associated primarily with the Third World has now become an American hallmark. This accelerates social decay because the greater the disparity grows, the less likely the rich will be willing to contribute to the common good. When a company like Apple, which with €76 billion in the bank has greater reserves at its disposal than the government in Washington, a European can only shake his head over the Republican resistance to tax increases. We see it as self-destructive.

The same applies to America’s broken political culture. The name Cheap Cialis "United States" seems increasingly less appropriate.

Something has become routine in American political culture that has been absent in Germany since Willy Brandt’s Ostpolitik policies of rapprochement with East Germany and the Soviet Bloc (in the 1960s and ’70s): hate. At the same time, reason has been replaced by delusion. The notion of tax cuts has taken on a cult-like status, and the limited role of the state a leading ideology. In this new American civil war, respect for the country’s highest office was sacrificed long ago. The fact that Barack Obama is the country’s first African-American president may have played a role there, too.

The West, C’est nous

There’s no deliverance in sight. One can no longer depend on politics in America.

The reliance of Congress members on donations from the rich has become too great.

Nor will there be any revolutionary storming of the Bastille in America. Popular anger may boil over, but the elites have succeeded in both controlling the masses and channeling their passions. Take the Tea Party, which has enjoyed godfather-like bankrolling from brothers and billionaire industrialists David and Charles Koch and found a mouthpiece in Rupert Murdoch’s populist, hatred-stirring Fox News.

From a European perspective, it all looks very strange: it’s a different political culture. There are other rules at play, different standards.

More and more we view America with the clear notion that we are different…

Full article and author biography

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The Tony Kushner Affair – Israel Policy Critics No Longer Cast into Darkness

May 16th, 2011 · Israel, Palestine, Policy, Politics

The Tony Kushner “affair” indicates an amazing transformation in the ability of those critical

of Israel policies to express their views publicly.

Only a few years ago, anyone expressing criticism would have been consigned to the darkness.

Rabbi Arthur Waskow provides valuable insights into the reasons behind the rejection of the effort to cast Kushner into darkness, as well as into the radical changes that are taking lasix buy place in the Middle East.

The beginning of Rabbi Waskow’s piece is below, with a link to the full article.


Behind online ampicillin the Tony Kushner story:
The deeper reasons for CUNY’s rejection & reversal –

Rabbi Arthur Waskow

Last night, the executive committee of the CUNY Board

of Trustees  reversed the Board’s refusal of an honorary degree to Tony Kushner.

Behind the Board’s original decision and its reversal are three stories.

The first: There has been a concerted attack against Silagra buy phentermine order levitra Soft”>Kamagra Soft the best traditions of open debate and exploration of opinion in academia and in Jewish life, when it comes to criticism of the Israeli government.  The second story: There is a new wave of bold resistance to such arrogance, in the world and

in the Jewish community. The third: The Middle East is on the dizzying verge of an opening toward peace

– and that infuriates some hawks on both sides of the barricades. 

1. Mr. Trustee Wiesenfeld, Brand Cialis who swept cheapest propecia outburst.

He had earlier temporarily won the dismissal of a Brooklyn College Cialis for sale professor (later reversed by the college) for the same reasons; he had led the fight to squash the first Arabic-language charter school in New York, reviling its professional educator Debby Almontaser; he  opposed the right of Muslims to create a community center/ mosque in Lower Manhattan.  And a network of such bigots has been haunting academia for several years.

2. The new story is that this time, a wave of outrage levofloxacin stopped this bigotry in its tracks.  Jews committed to Jewish values, intellectuals, artists, academics, joined in condemning viagra sales the Board’s action. (We amoxil online at The Shalom Center were among the earliest to respond.

And we admire the swift and vigorous response of Jewish Voice for Peace.)

This uprising — which we should take honorable joy in –  is why Benno C. Schmidt Jr., chairman of the CUNY board since 2003 and a former president of Yale University,  told the Times that  the board had “made a mistake of principle, and not merely of policy,” in failing to approve Tony Kushner’s degree, Buy Cialis online at its meeting last Monday.  “Freedom of thought and expression is the bedrock of any university worthy of the name,” said Mr. Schmidt.
Duhhh! – It’s not likely that Mr.

Schmidt was fast asleep and snoring so loud he couldn’t hear Mr. Trustee Jeffrey S.

Wiesenfeld’s  "impassioned speech" against a made-up caricature of the real Tony Kushner, when the issue came before the Board last week. 

It’s more likely Chairman Schmidt was thinking that bigots like Wiesenfeld have more money, more glower, buy cialis cialis and more power, than gay playwrights, wimpy professors,  and soft-hearted peaceniks.   If so, he purchase viagra online was awakened by the wave of outrage that swept over the CUNY Board.

Five years ago, or even five weeks ago, many of those who rose up might well have rolled cialis buy cialis jelly online their eyes but kept their cytotec buy mouths shut.

Why now? propecia generic For one thing, a new sense of ferment Buy Female Viagra is bubbling, from Tahrir Square to Madison, Wisconsin. Cialis 0nline pharmacy online God is troubling the Waters.

3. And the third story: The REALLY New Middle East levitra brand vs generic is challenging Israel to think anew. Its government might respond by making new wars, or seeking a newer, broader peace.

Whichever direction it now takes, those Jews who disagree will be tenser than ever, more fearful that the old path or any new one spells disaster. Expect bitter fights, expect less room for shrugging off the struggle, expect more efforts to “excommunicate” the the diet pills critics. 

In the last two weeks, we have seen the tiny openings Buy Nolvadex Online Pharmacy No Prescription Needed for a possible though perilous passage toward peace buy cialis pills between Israel and Palestine.

In Israel, for the first time in years those committed to peace have raised their voices with serious buy ampicillin online proposals for a two-state solution.

Thirty crucial veteran leaders of the military / security establishment (not the usual peacenik suspects) have put forward a detailed plan. Hundreds of writers, artists, scholars who are the usual suspects but have for years now kept their mouth shut –  the intellectual flower of Israel – have also called for action Kamagra to that end.

Among the Palestinians, buy real viagra without prescription Hamas, Islamic Jihad, and Fatah have all agreed to halt attacks on Israel and create a caretaker government of national unity, led by technocrats rather than political figures. Some leaders of Hamas have said that if a majority of the Palestinian people cheap Amoxil votes for peace with Israel, Hamas will set aside its original framework calling for the abolition of the state of Israel.

The new government of Egypt has announced that its border with Gaza will be opened for trade – import and export.

Plans are moving ahead for the UN General Assembly ampicillin can you buy viagra in stores | buy cialis brand | levitra buy acomplia drugs buy online to admit a new Palestine, within approximately the 1967 Green Line boundaries, as a UN member.

All this could lead in the direction of a true peace settlement, supported by peace treaties between all Arab governments, the new state of Palestine, and the state of Israel – as the Arab League has several times proposed during cheap levitra generic the last decade.  (Till Cialis Kamagra now, these proposals have generic amoxil been ignored by the government of Israel and the Hamas government of Gaza.)

Or the very possibility of a breakthrough for peace might drive hawks on either or both sides, in or out of their governments,  viagra online to sabotage these openings.

If that happens, there could be another wave of violence as both the Israeli government and some parts of the Palestinian leadership react with fear viagra for women online and rage to yet another collapse of hope for peace. Online Viagra Shops

So far, the Netanyahu government and the Obama government have rejected the notion of a Palestinian government of national unity that includes Hamas; have rejected the notion of a UN role in establishing Palestinian buy cialis tablets independence; buyviagra and have failed to end the blockade of civilian goods from entering or leaving Gaza, to Online Viagra buy end the demolition of Palestinian homes in East Jerusalem, and to stop the settlement amoxil nolvadex online online of Israelis in the West Bank.  This triple rejection makes peace impossible…

diflucan href=”″>Full buy amoxil Article

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Germany Sets Green Energy Path

May 16th, 2011 · Alternative Energy, Energy, Energy independence, Fukushima, Japan, Nuclear Power, Obama, Policy, Solar

For those who say, “We have no choice but to embrace nuclear power, given the threat of global warming,” Germany is mounting a compelling refutation. See the article below from Environment buy amoxil online 360.

Germany makes current US pro-nuclear policy justifications look silly.


09 May 2011: Report

Germany’s Unlikely Champion
Of a Radical Green Energy Path

The disaster at the Fukushima plant in Japan convinced German Chancellor buy merck propecia Angela Merkel that nuclear power would never again be a viable option for her country. Now Merkel has embarked on the world’s most ambitious plan to power an industrial economy on renewable sources of energy.

by christian levitra costs schwägerl
German Chancellor Angela Merkel is anything but a left-wing greenie. The party she leads, the Christian Democratic Union, is the political equivalent of the Republicans in the U.S. Her coalition government is decidedly pro-business. Often described as Europe’s most powerful politician, Merkel’s top priority is job creation and economic growth.
Yet if the chancellor succeeds with her new energy policy, she will become the first leader to transform an industrialized nation from nuclear and fossil fuel energy to renewable power.
In mid-March, Merkel stunned the German public and other governments by announcing an Brand Levitra accelerated phasing out of all 17 German nuclear reactors as an immediate reaction to the Fukushima disaster in Japan. The chancellor now says she wants to slash the use of coal, speed up approvals for renewable energy investments, and reduce CO2 emissions drastically. That means that the 81 million Germans living between the North Sea and the Alps are supposed to cover their huge energy needs from wind, solar, geothermal, and biomass within a few decades.

Indeed, by 2030 green buy generic viagra professional | buy cialis pharmacy | cheap levitra generic electricity could be the dominant source of power for German factories and households.
“We want to end the use of where can buy viagra nuclear energy and reach the age of renewable energy as fast as possible,” Merkel said.
After the chancellor’s surprising announcement, opposition parties buy cialis internet from the left decried it as a political stunt, an act of opportunism, and even panic, ahead of key regional elections in Southern Germany.

But after these elections were lost by her party, Merkel soldiered on. In the past weeks, government officials have already offered details of the “energy turn,” as Buy Cialis Merkel calls the change.
The numbers that circulate in Berlin’s government district at the moment are staggering. Merkel’s administration plans to shut down the nuclear

The plan makes Germany the world’s most important laboratory of ‘green growth.’

buy pfizer viagra online | buy cialis pills online | buy levitra vardenafil

reactors — which in recent years reliably provided up to a quarter of Germany’s huge needs as baseload electricity — by 2022 at the latest. It wants to double the share of renewable energy to 35 percent of consumption in buy amoxicillin 2020, 50 percent in 2030, 65 percent in 2040, and more than 80 percent in 2050. At the same time, the chancellor vows to cut CO2 emissions (compared to 1990 levels) by levitra on line 40 percent in 2020, by 55 percent in 2030, and by more than 80 percent in 2050.
That makes Germany the world’s most important laboratory of “green growth.” No other country belonging to the G20 club of economic powers has a comparable agenda. online pharmacy In the U.S., President Obama is expanding state-backed loan guarantees for the nuclear industry to build more reactors, and Republicans are blocking measures to reduce CO2 emissions. Germany is Europe’s largest economy. Making such a country a renewable powerhouse would transform it into the undisputed mecca for everyone on the planet concerned with the environment and green-tech business.
But why would Merkel diflucan buy have Germany do what other big nations deem too risky and too expensive

? Is she prepared to sacrifice Germany’s economic viability, which stems from buy levitra online manufacturing and technology export to a great extent

Clearly, Angela Merkel has reacted to the Fukushima disaster completely differently from Barack Cialis Jelly Obama and other world leaders. In the past, Merkel too has been pro-nuclear. She was convinced that nuclear power was safe and clean, and that the Chernobyl accident was a result of Soviet inefficiency, not of the technology itself. Tadacip Only last year, she fought to extend the operation time of Germany’s reactors by 12 years on average, against fierce opposition from the left and environmental groups.

Cialis Professional inline; margin-left: 0px; margin-right: 0px” height=”233″ alt=”Angela Merkel” src=”” width=”175″ align=”right” border=”0″ />

Chancellor Angela Merkel said the Fukushima disaster “has forever changed the way we define risk in Germany.”

In my view, the key to the chancellor’s radical Cialis Professional turnaround lies levitra brand generic deep in her past. In the 1980s, well before she became a politician, Merkel worked in the former East Germany as a researcher in quantum chemistry, examining the probability of events amoxicillin in the subatomic domain. Her years of research instilled in her the conviction that she has a very good sense of how likely events are, not only in physics but also Viagra online in politics. Buy Viagra, Buy Cialis, Buy Levitra Without Prescription Opponents of nuclear energy were “bad at assessing risks,” she told me in the 1990s.

Then came the March disaster at the Fukushima-Daiichi nuclear power plant, which made the chancellor realize that she had been terribly wrong about the probability of a nuclear catastrophe in a highly advanced nation. Merkel’s scientific sense buy real viagra without prescription | buy cialis fast shipping | low price levitra of probability and rationality was shaken to the core. If this was possible, she reasoned, something similar might tadalafil happen in Germany — not a tsunami, of course, but something equally unexpected. In her view, the field trial of nuclear energy had failed.

As a self-described rationalist, she amoxil online felt compelled to act.
”It’s over,” she told one of her advisers immediately after watching on TV as the roof of a Fukushima reactor blew off. “Fukushima has forever changed the way we define risk in Germany.” Viagra Super Active+ Online
Merkel’s conservative environment minister, Norbert Röttgen, recently echoed this line of thinking when he said that the Fukushima buy acomplia disaster “has swapped a mathematical definition of nuclear energy’s residual risk with a terrible real-life experience.” He added: “We can no longer put forward the argument of a tiny risk of ten to the power of minus seven, as we have seen that it can get real in a high-tech ampicillin buy society like Japan.”
The new course is a huge challenge in terms of cost and feasibility. Of the current 82 gigawatts of peak demand, about half comes from coal, 23 percent from nuclear, 10 percent from natural gas, and 17 percent from renewables. That means online drugstore three quarters of Germany’s electricity buy purchase viagra | buy cialis generic online | levitra buying ampicillin cheap sources will have to be replaced by green technology within just a few decades, if the nuclear phase-out and the CO2 goals are to be accomplished.
Germany is in a good starting position, though. Since the 1990s, the Renewable Energy Sources Act has paved the way for billions of Euros flowing to consumers buy levaquin and investors for green power projects. The law guarantees that

Chancellor Merkel’s big hope for her ‘energy turn’ is offshore wind energy.

each kilowatt hour of green electricity is fed into the grid and bought at a favorable statutory rate by operators. The rate varies between green energy sources, but is considerably higher than normal electricity prices. It is guaranteed for a 20-year period. This makes investment in renewable energy projects very attractive; witness Google recently pumping money into a Germ

an solar park.
As a result, the share of renewable electricity in Germany has jumped from 5 percent in the 1990s to 17 percent today.

Traveling through the country, it is easy to see signs of this change. In the north, wind farms are now characteristic of many regions, particularly along the coastlines of the North and Baltic seas.

In the south, which is richer in sunlight, photovoltaic cells cover the roofs of whole villages. The bright yellow of rapeseed is prevalent in many regions, as the plant is widely used for producing biodiesel. More and more farms are equipped with big tanks holding “biomethane” derived from maize or agricultural residues.
Merkel’s big hope for her “energy turn” is offshore wind energy. After a sluggish buy generic cytotec start, several new commercial projects are under construction. buy viagra online discount On May 2, Merkel proudly pressed a button at a ceremony on the Baltic Sea coast, setting in motion 21 huge offshore wind turbines 16 kilometers away at sea. Taken together, they Levitra Professional can provide 50,000 households with renewable energy.
“Baltic 1” is Germany’s first commercial offshore windpark.

The turbines have been constructed by Siemens, a company that until recently earned most of its money in the energy sector by building nuclear and fossil-fuel power plants.

The wind farm is run by EnBW, a German utility that has so far produced most of its electricity with nuclear power plants. Nothing could symbolize the new policy better than this offshore wind farm.
Merkel’s big bet is that environmental lasix buy online technology will be one of Germany’s most important sources of income.

Already, the country’s share in the green-tech world market is 16 percent, which means billions of Euros in business. Renewable energy has generated 300,000 `green collar’ new jobs in the past decade, Röttgen says. Big Buy Antibiotics medications companies like Siemens and Bosch are determined Buy Cialis to become “green multinationals.” Thousands of small- and medium-sized technology companies see green technology as an important part of their business and investment strategy.
Experts agree that the transition will be costly and carry economic risks.

Already, consumers in Germany pay about 5 U.S. cents per kilowatt hour as

Experts agree that the transition will be costly and carry economic risks for Germany.

a surcharge to finance the feed-in tariffs, which enable owners of wind turbines or geothermal installations to sell renewably generated electricity back to the grid at favorable rates. For an average family of four, this amounts to 220 U.S. dollars per year. purchase Buy Topamax Online Pharmacy No Prescription Needed viagra online | where to buy cialis | order online levitra And with investment needs in the hundreds buyviagra | buy cialis overseas | buy levitra drugs of billions of Euros, consumers can expect a growing surcharge on their monthly bill.

This will surely test Germans’ willingness to support Merkel’s plan.
But Röttgen, the environmental buy cialis pills minister, points out that mass deployment of renewable energy technology will drive down costs. “When more people consume oil and coal, the price will go up, but when more people consume renewable energy, the price of it will go down“, he says. buy amoxicillin online buying propecia Röttgen argues that instead of sending billions of Euros to Russia and other sources of imported energy, Germany will now be able “to give that money to our green-tech engineers and local craftsmen.” Still, keeping the cost of the transition low and stopping energy-intensive companies from relocating to Romania or China will be very difficult.

In addition to the challenge of huge costs, a complete overhaul of the energy infrastructure is necessary.

It is not enough to install Brand Viagra wind turbines and solar panels.

A new grid is needed, as are ways to store green electricity. As wind and sunshine are highly variable, electricity will increasingly flow intermittently. nolvadex buy Power will have to flow from offshore buy online amoxil wind weight loss acomplia farms in the north of the country over many hundred kilometers viagra prices to the industrial centers in the west and the south.

Experts estimate that more than 4,000 kilometers of new “eco-electricity highways” are necessary to connect renewable power plants to consumers and avoid power outages. Storing green electricity when the wind is blowing strongly or when there is ample sunlight is an unsolved challenge.
But even if all technological problems are solved, it is not easy to roll them out nationwide. Many Germans don’t like the sight of wind turbines, which are called “asparagus.” New hydro plants and some wind power installations face fierce opposition. So do those “eco-electricity highways,” which still look like ordinary power lines to their neighbors.

Local residents have yet to be convinced that they have to sacrifice undisturbed horizons for the greater good.

Christian Schwägerl, who works for the German news weekly, Der Spiegel, is an environmental journalist who has reported on science and public policy for two decades and is author of the book The Age of Men, published in German under the title Menschenzeit by Riemann/Random House. In a previous article for Yale Environment 360, Schwägerl wrote about a unique nature reserve being created along the spine of Germany’s former Iron Curtain.

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Nuclear Safety Review Should Include Terrorist Plane Crashes

April 1st, 2011 · Energy, Fukushima, Nuclear Power, Obama

Germany is buy cialis online about to conduct a safety review of its nuclear reactors. At the top of the list is whether they could withstand amoxicillin a wide-body plane crash. Der Spiegel reports on this and the prevailing opinion that they can no

t withst and such

a crash.

Shouldn’t the US

safety review include the same check

? Should buy cialis now the US accept risks that the Germans will not


Al-Qaida as a Justification cheap buy ampicillin for Merkel’s Nuclear acomplia Phase-Out

generic kamagra title=”German Chancellor Angela Merkel has suddenly grown extremely skeptical of nuclear power.

Kamagra jelly height=”250″ alt=”German Chancellor Angela Merkel has suddenly grown extremely skeptical ampicillin buy of nuclear power.” hspace=”0″ src=”” width=”520″ align=”center” online pharmacy Buy Viagra online Professional”>Viagra Professional border=”0″ />


Der Spiegel levitra brand online buy viagra
April order online levitra 1, 2011

German Chancellor Angela Merkel has suddenly grown extremely skeptical of nuclear power.

Must nuclear reactors Online buy Viagra be able to withstand a plane crash

? buy online cheap ampicillin Levitra cheap amoxicillin Safety checks currently underway on Germany’s 17 nuclear reactors will address exactly that question.

For German commentators, it has long been clear that German facilities are vulnerable

to such attacks — and that Merkel is merely preparing the country for a rapid atomic phase-out.

In all the political wrangling that has accompanied Chancellor Angela Merkel’s decision to temporarily shut down buy propecia seven aging German where can buy Buy Orlistat Online Pharmacy No Prescription Needed viagra | buy cialis pills | levitra online nuclear reactors, her stated reason for doing so — namely, generic levaquin safety buy amoxil checks — has often become lost in the shuffle.

But on Thursday, the Reactor Safety Commission (RSK), released a "catalogue of requirements" that outlines Kamagra buy Cheap Amoxil cialis brand the conditions that all 17 reactors in Germany amoxicillin will have to fulfill before they are allowed to continue operations.

In addition buy buy levitra drugs viagra online discount | buy cialis cialis | buy levitra online cheap href=””>lasix cheap to looking into the possible effects natural catastrophes such as earthquakes and floods might have on the country’s nuclear facilities, the catalogue also includes checks on their Viagra Jelly ability to withstand buy cialis online 32 "man-made hazards." Of particular concern are airplane crashes, whether terrorist-caused or not.

The facilities’ susceptibility Buy Erectile Dysfunction medications to attacks modelled on the Stuxnet virus, which reportedly crippled Iranian efforts to enrich uranium in 2010, is also to be checked…

amoxil online

Concerns about Levitra SX”>Tadalis SX the ability of German reactors to withstand direct hits from a plane crash spiked following the Sept.

11, 2001 terrorist attacks low price levitra in the US.

It was quickly determined that most of the country’s nuclear buy cheapest Buy Cipro Online viagra online | buy cialis with no prescription | cheap levitra generic facilities are vulnerable. Indeed, some of cheap cytotec the country’s older reactors were equipped with a kind of "fog machine" designed to envelop the facilities buy nolvadex in case of danger to make them invisible from above.

The new safety checks will once again include possible plane crash scenarios as well as other hypothetical amoxicillin terrorist Viagra online attacks…

[Read viagra proscar 424 buy viagra href="">cheapest viagra cost the full article, including comments from political levitra online price commentators, all of whom believe the reactors will not withstand plane attacks and should diflucan buy online be phased out.]

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The Clearest Explanation of the Fukushima Nuclear Situation

March 30th, 2011 · Fukushima, Japan, Nuclear Power, Radiation

The video below provides a clear, buy cheap amoxicillin understandable explanation of the Fukushima sildenafil citrate | buy cialis daily | buy buy cheap cheap levitra levitra nuclear disaster. buy Kamagra Gold proscar It describes clearly what has happened to date, what cheap propecia will occur over the next several months, and what will Cialis be the likely long-term outcome.

The Cialis man providing buy cialis pill the main explanation is Dr.

A. Gopalakrishnan, former chairman of the Atomic Energy Regulatory Board in India.

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Moving Photos and Reflections on the Arab Uprising

March 29th, 2011 · Egypt, Libya, Middle East, Muslim

These are wonderful, moving photos of and reflections about the uprising in the Arab Brand Viagra countries of North Africa and the Middle East.

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No, the Amount of Radiation Released from the Fukushima Nuclear Reactors is NOT "Safe"

March 27th, 2011 · Fukushima, Japan, Nuclear Power, Radiation

This well researched piece from Washington’s Blog (hat tip Barry Ritholtz) should remove any delusion you may have that the Fukushima nuclear disaster is not going can you buy viagra in stores to affect you, or that it is going to be a minor incident.



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Thursday, March 24, 2011

No, the Amount of Radiation Released online amoxil from the Japanese Nuclear Reactors is NOT "Safe"

Just as with the Gulf

oil spill – where BP, buy Amoxil online government spokesmen and mainstream talking heads spewed happy talk about how "benign" the dispersants were and how all the oil had disappeared – there is now an avalanche of statements that the radiation is at "safe" doses for everyone outside of the immediate amoxil online vicinity of Fukushima.
For example, Japanese government call-in advice lines are telling people to simply rinse off any produce covered with radioactive dust.

[If the video does not appear below, click here to view.]


Ann Coulter claims that radiation is good for you

It is not very confidence-inspiring that:

EPA officials, however, refused to answer questions or make staff members available to explain the exact location and number of monit

ors, or the levels of radiation, if any, being recorded at existing monitors in California.

Or that the EPA has pulled 8 of its 18 radiation monitors in buy cheap viagra California, Oregon and Washington because (by implication) they Buy Antibiotics medications are giving readings which seem too high.

What Levels of Radiation Are Being Released?

So what levels of radiation are being released at Fukushima?

New Scientist reports that the radioactive fallout from Japan is approaching Chernobyl online pharmacy levitra levels:

Japan’s damaged nuclear plant in Fukushima has been emitting radioactive iodine and caesium at levels approaching those seen in the aftermath of the Chernobyl accident in 1986. Austrian researchers have used a worldwide network of radiation detectors – designed to spot clandestine nuclear bomb tests – to show that iodine-131 is being released at daily levels 73 per cent of those seen after the 1986 disaster.

The daily amount of caesium-137 released from Fukushima Daiichi is around 60 per cent of the amount released from Chernobyl.

Tyler Durden points lasix order out that – when you consider the fact that the amount of Caesium-137 released at Fukushima in the first 3-4 days of the crisis amounted to 50% that released by Chernobyl over 10 days – the real run rate of the radiation released at Fukushima is now about 120-150% the figure released by the Chernobyl explosion.

There are Provigil pharmacy other signs of high levels radiation. See this Brand Levitra and this. And it is important to remember that the amount of radioactive fuel at Fukushima dwarfs Chernobyl.

This Could Continue for a While
Many experts say that it could take months to contain Fukushima. See this and this. And therefore, high radiation levels might continue to be released for some time.

Evidence for the buy cialis fact that a quick fix is unlikely is widespread. For example, reactors 1, 2, 3 and 4 were all leaking steam yesterday.

There was some Viagra Professional indication that reactors 5 and 6 are leaking as well. As Kyodo News reports: Online cheap levitra generic Viagra buy Cialis

The firm [Tokyo Electric Power Company] also said it found both iodine-131 and cesium-137 in a sample taken from near the drain outlets of the plant’s No. 5 and No. 6 reactors that stabilized Sunday in so-called ”cold shutdown.”

CNN notes today:

Authorities in Japan raised the prospect Friday of a likely breach in the all-important containment vessel of the No. 3 reactor at the stricken Fukushima Daiichi nuclear power plant, a potentially ominous development in the race to prevent a large-scale release of radiation.

The New York Times reports:

A senior buy acomplia online nuclear executive amoxicillin amoxil who insisted on anonymity but has broad contacts in Japan said that there was a long vertical crack running down the side of the reactor vessel itself. The crack Cialis for sale runs down below the water level in the reactor and has been leaking fluids

and gases, he said.


“There is a definite, definite crack in the vessel — it’s up and down and it’s large,” he said. “The problem with cracks is they do not get smaller.”

The cores of reactors 1 and 3 appear to be leaking as well.

This is not to say that there will be a full meltdown which sends radioactive plumes high into the stratosphere. I am assuming that will not happen.

But the release of radioactivity is severe and ongoing.

But Low Doses of Radiation Are Safe … Aren’t They?

While most would dismiss as crackpot ramblings Coulter’s claim that radiation is good for you, what about the pervasive claims that the amount of radiation which Buy cheap Levaquin has been released is so low that it is "safe" for people outside of the immediate vicinity of Fukushima?

Physicians for Social Responsibility notes:

According to the National Academy levitra brand name of Sciences, there are no safe doses of radiation.

Decades of research show clearly that any dose of radiation increases an individual’s risk for the development of cancer.

“There is no safe level of radionuclide exposure, whether from food, water or other sources. Period,” said Jeff Patterson, purchase levitra online DO, immediate past president of Physicians Viagra Professional for Social Responsibility. “Exposure to radionuclides, such as iodine-131 and online kamagra cesium-137, increases the incidence of cancer. For this reason, every effort must be taken to minimize the radionuclide content in food and water.”

“Consuming food containing radionuclides is particularly dangerous. If an individual ingests or inhales a radioactive particle, it continues to irradiate the body as long as it remains radioactive and stays in the body,” said Alan H.

Lockwood, MD, a member of the Board of Physicians for Social Responsibility.
Radiation can be concentrated many times in the food chain and any consumption adds to the cumulative risk of cancer and other diseases.

John LaForge notes:

The National Council on Radiation Protection says, “… every increment of radiation where can buy viagra exposure produces an incremen­tal increase in the risk of cancer.” The Environmental Protection Agency says, “… any exposure to radiation poses some risk, i.e. there is no level below which we can say an exposure poses no risk.” The Department of Energy says about “low levels of radiation” that “… the major effect is a very slight increase in cancer risk.” The Nuclear Regulatory Commission says, “any amount of radiation may pose some risk for causing cancer … any increase in dose, no matter how small, results in an incremental increase in risk.” The National Academy of Sciences, in its “Biological Effects of Ionizing Radiation VII,” says, “… it is unlikely that a threshold exists for the induction of cancers ….”

Long story short, “One can no longer speak of a ‘safe’ dose level,” as Dr. Ian Fairlie and Dr. Marvin Resnikoff said in their report “No dose too low,” in the Bulletin of the Atomic Scientists.

And Brian Moench, MD, writes:

Administration spokespeople continuously claim "no threat" from the radiation reaching the US from Japan, just as they did with generic nolvadex oil hemorrhaging into the Gulf. Perhaps we should all whistle "Don’t worry, be happy" in unison. A thorough review of the science, however, begs a second opinion.

That the radiation is being released 5,000 miles away isn’t as comforting as it seems…. Every day, the jet stream carries pollution from Asian smoke stacks and dust from the Gobi Desert to our West Coast, contributing 10 to 60 percent buy cytotec online of the total pollution breathed by Californians, depending on the time of year. Mercury is probably the second most toxic substance known after plutonium. Half the mercury in the atmosphere buy cialis cheap over the entire US originates in China.

It, too, is 5,000 miles away.

A week after a nuclear weapons test in China, iodine 131 could be detected in the thyroid glands of deer in Colorado, although it could not be detected in the air or in nearby vegetation.

The idea that a threshold exists or there is a safe level of radiation for human exposure began unraveling in the 1950s when research showed one pelvic x-ray in a pregnant woman could double the rate of childhood leukemia in an exposed baby.

Furthermore, the risk was ten times higher if it occurred in the first three months of pregnancy generic levitra than near the end. This became the stepping-stone to the understanding that the timing of exposure was even more critical than the dose. The earlier in embryonic development it occurred, the greater the risk.

A new medical concept has emerged, increasingly supported by the latest research, called "fetal origins of disease," that centers on the evidence that a multitude of chronic diseases, including cancer, often have their origins in the first few weeks after conception by environmental insults disturbing normal embryonic development.

It is now established medical advice that pregnant women should avoid any exposure to x-rays, medicines or chemicals when not absolutely necessary, buy amoxicillin no prescription no matter how small the dose, especially in the first three months.

"Epigenetics" is a term integral to fetal origins of disease, referring to chemical attachments to genes that turn them on or off inappropriately and have impacts functionally similar to broken Online Pharmacy No Prescription Needed genetic buy cheap ampicillin bonds. Epigenetic changes can be caused by unimaginably small doses – parts per trillion – be it chemicals, air pollution, cigarette smoke or radiation. Furthermore, these epigenetic changes can occur within minutes after exposure and may be passed on to subsequent generations.

The Endocrine Society, 14,000 researchers and medical specialists in more than 100 countries, warned that "even infinitesimally low levels of exposure to endocrine-disrupting best viagra online chemicals, indeed, any level of exposure at all, may cause endocrine or reproductive abnormalities, particularly if exposure occurs during a critical developmental window. Cialis online Surprisingly, low doses may even exert more potent effects than higher doses." If hormone-mimicking chemicals at any level are not safe for a fetus, then the concept is likely to be equally true of the even more intensely toxic radioactive elements drifting over from buy amoxicillin Viagra Jelly Japan, some of which may also act as endocrine disruptors.

Many epidemiologic studies show that extremely low doses of radiation increase the incidence of childhood cancers, low birth-weight babies, premature births, infant mortality, birth defects and even diminished intelligence. Just two abdominal x-rays delivered to a male can slightly increase the chance of his future children developing leukemia. By damaging proteins anywhere in a living cell, radiation can accelerate the aging Kamagra process and diminish the function of any organ. Cells can repair themselves, but the rapidly growing cells in a fetus may divide before repair can occur, negating the body’s defense mechanism and replicating the damage.

Comforting statements buy real viagra without prescription | buy cialis fast shipping | low price levitra about the safety of low radiation are not even accurate for adults. Small increases in risk per individual have immense consequences in the aggregate. When low risk is accepted for billions of people, there will still be millions of victims. New research on risks of x-rays illustrate the point.

Radiation from CT coronary scans is considered low, Buy Nexium Online but, statistically, it causes cancer in one of every 270 40-year-old women who receive the scan. Twenty year olds will have double that rate.

Annually, online propecia 29,000 cancers are caused by the 70 million CT scans done in the US. Common, low-dose dental x-rays more than double the rate of thyroid cancer. Those buy viagra online discount buy ampicilin online exposed to repeated dental x-rays have an even higher risk of thyroid buyviagra | buy cialis overseas | buy levitra drugs cancer.



Beginning with Madam Curie, the story of nuclear power is one where key players have consistently miscalculated or misrepresented the risks of radiation. The victims include many of those who worked on the original Manhattan Project, the 200,000 soldiers who were assigned to eye witness our nuclear tests, the residents of the Western US who absorbed the lion’s share of fallout from our nuclear testing in Nevada, the thousands of forgotten victims of Three Mile Island or the likely hundreds of thousands of casualties of Chernobyl. This could be the propecia latest chapter in that long and tragic story when, once again, we were told not to worry.

Note: People who Buy Cialis online rationally discuss the hazards from nuclear accidents are dismissed as "anti-nuclear". However, that is like saying that people who are against pilots drinking tequila during flights are purchase viagra online | where to buy cialis | order online levitra anti-flying. As Bloomberg points out, the operator of the Fukushima reactors faked safety tests and results and cut every corner in the books for decades, just as BP cut every safety corner prior to the Gulf oil spill. Moreover, the Fukushima reactors were not online ampicillin designed to withstand an earthquake or a tsunami, and their peculiar design makes the spent fuel rods an even greater danger than the reactors themselves.

Demanding a safer design – e.g. thorium reactors – and ongoing maintenance and safety tests doesn’t mean one is anti-nuclear.

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