Open Talk Tuesday

Yes, another in a continuing series ;-)

Continuation of the prior:

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About E.M.Smith

A technical managerial sort interested in things from Stonehenge to computer science. My present "hot buttons' are the mythology of Climate Change and ancient metrology; but things change...
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60 Responses to Open Talk Tuesday

  1. Related to today:

    “The trees are drawing me near
    I’ve got to find out why…”

    It turns out they really like the carbon dioxide.

    Can you imagine if a tree could talk, what it might say to the climate folks striving to reduce their lifegiving atmospheric component?

    “CO2, Bruté?”

    ===|==============/ Keith DeHavelle

  2. Serioso says:

    I’d like to recommend a book: “The Price of Civilization” by Jeffery D. Sachs. The bias is liberal, but Sachs tries very hard to be honest and objective, and the book is crammed full of facts.

  3. H.R. says:

    I wonder how the Incas solved the problem of all the flies drawn to the rivers of sacrificial blood flowing down the steps of their temples?

  4. Scarlet Pumpernickel says:

    Just wondering, was this to do with the Meteorite showers you talked about a few weeks ago? Or another climate problem?

    BTW this is a cool video anyway he he

  5. E.M.Smith says:


    Heck, I’d love to live underground like that! Safe, secure. “Temporary shelter” my backside. You don’t dig an underground city for anything ‘temporary’… Temperature stable.

    And it’s not that hard to dig. Modestly soft rock, Just takes time and a larger rock, some wood and water for heat breaking too.

    Depending on the age, it might tie in with the rest of the ‘climate change’ of the ice age. See the latest posting:

    I’ll have to look into the Zoroastrian legends and see how they match up with the Vedic stories of a battle in the sky…

    There are two lethal problems for any “hollow earth” theory:

    1) Mass of the earth is wrong.
    2) Plasticity of rock (not to mention lava… and vulcanism) kind of means things are crushed and cooked…


    Fly paper? ;-)

    @Keith DeHavelle:

    Be like Cleopatra, breath heavily on a plant today ;-)

  6. P.G. Sharrow says:

    I often “talk to my very young plants in the nursery. I doubt they care about what I am saying. They really dig on the CO2! 8-) pg

  7. j ferguson says:

    In the spirit of sharing (and making sure i can link photobucket photos) here is a pork delivery vehicle seen on the road from Siem Reap to Poipet, Cambodia during a recent outing. If this works, I’d like to follow up with a few notes on two other things which astonished us on our recent trip to SE Asia.

  8. j ferguson says:

    There has to be a better way to contribute photos than photobucket which in some efforts a year or two ago, seemed to retain more of the resolution of the original 267kB photo than what i think I see here.

    Assuming that a couple of notes on navigation in the upper Mekong and on the extent of compressed natural gas automotive use in Thailand would be of interest, could you suggest a better way to provide the 4 or 5 photos which would support the notes.


  9. E.M.Smith says:

    @J. Ferguson:

    Interesting “delivery vehicle’… Innovation, gotta love it. ;-)

    Best way to do photos? I’m don’t know. I can upload photos, but it takes up space in my ‘allotment’ so I don’t do a lot of it. “A few” I could do, but it would require emailing them to me and tome time lags. There’s probably an easier way…

    Actually, it takes about “no time” to make a wordpress blog and if you can post comments you pretty much have the skill needed (it has a reasonably easy gui to work out and I’d be willing to ‘provide pointers’) Then you can upload 3 GB of ‘media files’ to your library and keep your own control of your images. It’s a fairly large free space allowance.

    Under “meta” on the right margin, click on ‘’ and then choose the option to make your own blog…

    There are probably a bunch of other photo sharing places, but I’m not he person who knows best how to choose between them as I’ve not used any of them…

    Anything about folks finding “other ways” to do things is of interest to me, especially on food and fuel issues. Navigation and boats are fun too ;-)

    FWIW, it took me about an hour to get a wordpress blog set up and then about another hour to figure out how to make a posting and upload media. Mostly just figuring out that the little camera icon means ‘upload media’ and the little ‘thumb tack’ icon means make a new posting… then filling in the blanks when prompted. It probably could be done even faster if I wasn’t watching TV while I did it ;-)

    FWIW, this blog started just that way. I just wanted a place to stick ‘comments’ that I found I was repeating on WUWT and got tired of retyping things. So I stuck the ‘usual answers and images’ here and would just link to them from there. Exactly the thing you want to do. (Recursion, see recursion. ;-) from the “Devil’s DP Dictionary” ;-)

  10. P.G. Sharrow says:

    @J.Ferguson; second the motion. I just went WordPress last week to set up a blog. It has taken me a week, very part time, to get going. not too difficult. and I’m dyslexic! see below;

    set up 10 pictures to my library. drag and drop from PC, my pictures. files only 3.2megs in 3gigs of storage, lots of room. JPEGs work best. have fun pg

  11. Scarlet Pumpernickel says:

    Bye Bye China and $AU soon

  12. Scarlet Pumpernickel says:

    Lonely Planet Saudi Arabia just in case you want to visit

  13. Jason Calley says:

    @ Scarlet Pumpernickle

    Well, there’s a perfectly good solution for the empty Chinese cities. Fill them with slaves! See, here’s how it works…

    OK, so China has these empty cities. Meanwhile, the US has the most prisoners of any nation on Earth — and about half of them are not even in prison for violent offenses; they’ll make GOOD slaves. In addition, the US owes China something in the neighborhood of a trillion or two dollars. So, the US just settles up with China by redeeming Treasury Bonds with slaves! Wow! Win win!

    What’s that? Slavery is illegal? Not allowed under the 13th Amendment? Well, no, that is not true. In fact, the 13th Amendment even SPECIFICALLY ALLOWS SLAVERY just as long as it is punishment for crime. Of course, some people will say that that must be a reference to some type of temporary slavery while held in prison, but that is NOT what the Amendment says. According to the 13th, if you are convicted of crime — just about any crime, I guess — you can be made into a slave. And don’t worry about those prisoners who have almost finished their sentences. What with virtual, thought-based crimes, it will be easy enough to get them re-sentenced on something new. “Prisoner 28710 said to me that he would like to be out of prison and sitting in a bar drinking beer. This is clear evidence of a plan to break out. In addition, there are laws against prisoners using alcohol.” Guilty as charged, and off to China! Wheeee!

    So, what a deal! China gets some very cheap labor. VERY cheap. And, they get to utilize what would otherwise be empty and unused resources, those empty cities in Mongolia. The US gets to pay off some of its debt, and also gets to cut its prison costs at the same time. Win win!

    Once you learn to think like a sociopath, things get very simple.

  14. George says:

    T.J. Rogers (of whom I am quite a fan, actually, even if I don’t share his love of the Packers) has an interesting article today at the WSJ:

    Interesting things about most solar installations in the US that I did not know about.

    Also, an interesting thread over at Anthony’s site (please also see the comments):

  15. Scarlet Pumpernickel says: NASA we found 93% of the things that we don’t know are there…..

  16. George says:


    They are only looking in the ecliptic. There are a lot of craters at the North and South poles of the Moon and Mercury. I don’t see any reason to believe that most of the impacts in the inner solar system came from the ecliptic. Maybe most of the HUGE ones did. But consider something upsets things in a gravitational sense in the Oort cloud … and objects start raining in. I am willing to bet they could originate from nearly any direction.

  17. George says:

    @E.M. Smith

    Saw your posting at WUWT. Thought I would share a new posting convention I have adopted with the folks here. It is no longer “the team” it is “the now-discredited team” along with “the now-discredited hockey stick” and “the now-discredited AGW hypothesis”.

    My reason for this is something I would share in private but the exact words chosen are for a very specific reason.

  18. Scarlet Pumpernickel says:

    @ George – Yep there is a giant crater close to Antarctica just west of Chile

    This is an interesting talk about the Dog Headed people (also werewolf origins), but in Medieval Europe they really believed in dog headed races

  19. Scarlet Pumpernickel says: this is different one but I guess Antarctica was in a different position then

  20. George says:

    SP from the link you provided:

    Another detailed description comes from the Icelandic tale “Olafur and the Trolls”:

    In these rocks was her cave, into which she carried me. When I was there I saw another giantess coming towards me, of younger appearance than the former, but both were immensely tall. They were dressed in tunics of horse-leather, falling to their feet in front, but very short behind.

    Would seem to me to be an encounter with something like the Dorset people. These were extremely cold-adapted people who were very tall compared to humans at the time. They also didn’t seem to want to engage in combat and were eventually driven out of their range by the Inuit and the Aleut. Some were said to have survived on isolated Arctic islands until the early 19th century.

  21. George says:

    Sorry, meant Thule

  22. George says:

    The Dorset people would have been in Greenland and possibly had contact with Scandinavians. The Thule would not yet have arrived in Greenland until after the MWP. The Dorset culture would have been the culture of Greenland before the MWP and could well have come into contact with the Scandinavians many times. The MWP basically killed off the Dorset as the Thule and Inuit took over their range. They are also called the Tuniit.

    The problem apparently is that they would not stand their ground and fight. They would flee. So the Thule and the Inuit basically just drove them into oblivion.

  23. George says:

    Looks like there’s been more progress on nuclear plants in the US than I thought.

  24. E.M.Smith says:


    Don’t need to go to the Oort cloud to find out of the ecliptic things. KBO will do it… Oh, and a fair number of NEOs too… And a fair number of comets that broke up left streams that, through resonance effects, end up on various non-ecliptic paths (look at the broadening of Encke debris fields…)

    But hey, I’m sure we can trust them to be honest, complete, and accurate, they work for NASA after all… ;-)

    Oh, and I like the convention. I can guess at why… I’ll try to remember to work it in.

    Wonder if we can get any Thule DNA to look at…

    Also, that nuclear link: Interesting… No new plants licensed, but you can restart and old license easy enough to be worth doing…

  25. George says:

    Actually, I want to look at Dorset DNA. There’s plenty of Thule. Go to Greenland and ask a native to spit in a cup.

  26. Scarlet Pumpernickel says: They send bozos to Guatemala Bay, but you have these wives who hung around the most wanted terrorist ever for years and they get to go home lol

  27. George says:

    Actually, I believe there were several plants that were licensed but never built.

  28. P.G. Sharrow says:

    I wonder how much of MFGlobal funds went to Democrats and AGW-NGOs.
    ONE THOUSAND,MILLION dollars “disappeared” so whats a few hundred million dollars here or there? Huge amounts of money from public and private organizations is disappearing into the progressive rat hole. pg

  29. Scarlet Pumpernickel says:

  30. George says:

    Apparently Soros was purchased some of MF Global’s European sovereign debt at fire sale prices.

    Yields on Italian debt came off recently, with the yield on 10-year bonds falling below 6 percent for the first time since October. Soros’s move is likely to be regarded by markets as confidence in the euro zone’s ability to sort out its debt problems, the paper wrote.

    Or he believes he can “pull a Buffett” and have enough political clout to lobby Obama to bail them out and turn a handy profit.

  31. j ferguson says:

    E.M. and all,
    Our recent trip to Thailand, Laos, and Cambodia, besides producing the motivated pigs photo revealed serious use of compressed natural gas as a motor fuel in Thailand. We took a public 12-seat van from Korat to Bangkok, which pulled up for refueling about 20k outside of Bangkok. Everyone was asked to disembark (the law so required) during refueling. I hung around when i saw the hood lifted and the dispenser nozzle connected within.

    The fuel was compressed natural gas at 3,000psi/ 200 bar as shown on the “pump” gauge and the refueling took about 20 minutes. The ‘gas” station had at least 5 islands, and although the photo here doesn’t show them, by the time we left, there were queues at each pump which included more vans, taxicabs, and pickup trucks.

    Our van was configured with an automatic fall-over to 91 octane gasoline if the CNG ran out.

    Alerted to the use of gas for fuel in Thailand, we noticed that cars had stickers on the trunk-lids indicating LPG use as well.

    This is a link to a Platt Oilgram piece on the subject. Although the article notes that LPG and CNG are subsidized, the unsubsidized price of CNG would be about half that for gasoline.

    FWIW, outside Bangkok, in Thailand, the most prevalent vehicle is the pickup truck, followed by tuk tuks (3 wheelers of various configurations of motorcycle components with an open-air bench seat arrangement for 3 to 6 passengers), then step-through motorcycles (150cc +/-) – very few tank-up motorcycles – possibly more motorcycles than pick-ups in some parts of the county. Interestingly, number of step-through motorcycles far exceeds cars and trucks in Cambodia. Locals say they lost 20 years of development due to Pol Pot & company.

    We saw up to 5 people riding these bikes, two children standing between the driver and the handlebars, mother with baby behind driver and pre-teen hanging on behind mother – don’t you love the complete absence of “protect-you-from-yourself” regulation? Tuk tuks in Cambodia were trailers pulled by step-through motorcycles 150cc with the tongue supported on a swivel (5th wheel) on the seat behind the driver hence 4 wheelers. These drivers all wore helmets which I saw some remove after we’d passed a police check-point – must be a legal requirement to wear them.

    I was enchanted by the almost complete absence of goofy protect-you-from-yourself regulation in Thailand. I asked around about what you had to do to get sideways with the government. Aside from the usual murder, assault, and theft methods, and lese majeste, it looked like far more live-and-let-live than we see in the US. I could be all wrong about this, though – incomplete sample.

    I have a couple of other things which surprised us over there. I realize that sometimes the surprise is more an expression of previous ignorance than anything actually unusual about the subject, but…

  32. j ferguson says:

    Sorry, this should have been one of the photos above.

    can anyone suggest a better photo sharing system than photo-bucket?

  33. Chuckles says:

    J Ferg, Difficult to answer as I’ve never used photobucket, so I’ll instead ask, ‘are you looking for a Gallery type package to store your many travel photos, or just somewhere to occasionally upload pics onto the internet, where you can link to them?’

  34. j ferguson says:

    Hi Chuckles,
    I have plenty of storage in the many superceded hard disks on-board. what I’m looking for is a place I can upload to that will allow me to link to photos like those above and have them come up a reasonable size. Maybe my lack of html skills are where the problem is.

  35. Chuckles says:

    It’s not an easy one to answer. As noted above, you could get a WordPress or Blogger site and use it just to upload your images. But the terms and cons are probably quite short and sharp regarding hot linking to those images, so you could well find your site shut without warning.
    Tumblr is probably worth a look on that side, as they are fairly photo oriented.
    From the basics, a web server will serve up any file stored there, so simply copying an appropriately sized jpg onto a web server will make it accessible, exactly as per your earlier links. That however requires you to use some photo editing s/ware to get the right config for the uploaded file.
    There are notable potential security concerns involved in such a setup, some of them not trivial. One of the problems is that by posting a link such as those above, it is a magnet to the ungodly and unwashed to head straight there to see if the server can be used for darker activities.
    Alternately your could use a package like Picasa or Gallery2 or 3 to manage the images for you. Gallery2 at least, certainly allows you to upload images to the server, and have them automagically resized to a variety of preset sizes, with security constraints set anywhere you like. These resizes can be ‘served up’ reasonably easily to other sites, or viewed directly.
    You can a couple of my test/development installs of Gallery2 at www dot accompaniments do co dot uk, or www dot theredmans dot me dot uk

  36. tckev says:

    More ice in that?

    Here’s a neat place for Arctic sea ice graphs – all in one place.

  37. j ferguson says:

    thanks for the thoughts. I’m going to have a couple of days to fool with this during the coming week and look forward to getting linkable photos whose size i can control. Photobucket used to allow this, but either the method has become more complex, or my descent into the dwindles is swifter than I had imagined. Damned anosognosia.

  38. E.M.Smith says:


    That IMF dodge also means that the global pool of money at the IMF, including US money – the major contributor , ends up on the hook of Eurotrash debt… It is something to be vilified…

    Like that gold unwind issue. “rehypothication” is an astounding level of risk. If you hold GLD in a common stock account, those SHARES can even be hypothecated to someone else (so they can short them). In that case, not only do you have the hypothecation of the physical gold to worry about, but two different folks will claim to own the shares…


    As Soros is funding the Progressive Movement, he’s undoubtely already pulled his Buffett and has the deal in the bag, just waiting for signatures and announcements…

    He owns Obama, one way or another…

    @J. Ferguson:

    A former employee had a former spouse in Thailand. I was informed that he could not own land there, only she could, so now he had to rent if he moved back… So one way to get ‘sideways’ is to own land as a foreigner…

    One one trip to Canada, I noticed how clean and uncluttered the hotel pool area (indoor pool) was. Then realized it was the lack of 40 posters telling you how to not hurt yourself in the pool and that you could not put 1000 people in a Sauna…

    FWIW, I use the free GIMP package to reformat and downsize photos and just upload them to wordpress. Not seen anything that complains at me for doing it or anything about content. Takes several formats too, including regular jpg right from the camera…


    Neat ice site… going to add that link to the China posting…

  39. George says:

    I was reading this on autism,0,1218038.htmlstory

    And wondered why we didn’t see so much of it before and what those people did. Then I realized, they probably became monks. We don’t have nearly as many of those today as we do now. The lifestyle of many monasteries might appeal to many with autism if it isn’t too severe. Well, some might even appeal to those with severe cases (orders with vows of silence, for example).

  40. j ferguson says:

    E.M. right about land ownership. In a condominium building you can own a unit but more than 50% of the units in the building must belong to Thais. Ah, the stunning beauty of natural sites without “don’t fall over the cliff” signs and barricades everywhere.

    It may be that in Thailand the “Why doesn’t the government do something about this?” question is seldom asked.

  41. E.M.Smith says:


    My spouse deals with this all the time. Parents who WANT a finding of greater deficit. Gets the kid more services. Sometimes gets more dole money to the family. Some parents get upset when she has to tell them that their kid is now doing well enough to be mainstreamed.

    When you look at the way the diagnosis has changed over time it’s just crazy. Originally you had to be essentially non-functional and non-communicative with added deficits. Now if you have too ‘collections’ or if you speak oddly, BAM! Autistic! Many are really just Aspergers or even simple attention deficit disorder (but even ADD is sometimes a bit hokey… take a kid who’s bored silly in school and it becomes a ‘disease’…)

    So, IMHO, a lot of the ‘epidemic’ is as the article said, product of more money, more services, and wider window. A teacher wants to help the kid and knows that Autistic gets a full time tutor, well…

    In the past many were, I’m pretty sure, all sorts of normal avocations. Folks who cleaned things, or changed wheels, or even cooked french fries all day long… Monks? Maybe. Probably the odd farmer too…

    But that was back when it wasn’t a disease to be a bit odd…

    @J Ferguson:

    Maybe it was having Cambodia and Pol Pot on one side, VietNam on the other. Kind of gave them some perspective…


    Gonna keep me up all night reading, eh? ;-)

  42. Scarlet Pumpernickel says:


  43. Scarlet Pumpernickel says: Didn’t a lot of cooling start in August? Interesting it says we have to wait another 30 years for the next one, so they explode every 30 years and that’s when the last cooling was approx..

  44. Scarlet Pumpernickel says: Interesting site about magnetic field

  45. Scarlet Pumpernickel says: Lets see if mathematical theory is actually true LOL Antimatter on earth

  46. E.M.Smith says:

    @S.P.: They are a random average of 30 years, we get a cyclical 30 years. Very different…

    Hmmm…. Big cloud going to enter nearby Black Hole in about 2013… Mighty close to December 2012… Lots of energy going to be shot out in the process… Wonder what our position is relative to the expected energy beam?

    If there wasn’t so much going on right now, I’d make a posting out of that anti-matter link…

    “I think this is one of the most exciting discoveries in the geosciences in quite a long time – the idea that any planet has thunderstorms that can create antimatter and then launch it into space in narrow beams that can be detected by orbiting spacecraft to me sounds like something straight out of science fiction,” he said.

    So we claim to understand climate, and we just now discover that thunderstorms can emit positron beams…

    Wonder what the atmospheric reflection of CO2 is for antimatter ;-)

    FWIW, that RT link crashed FireFox… Don’t know what they have on it, but I’m going to be cautious about RT for a while…

  47. Scarlet Pumpernickel says:

    RT ok with firefox to me, was the Pier UK guy talking about how CO2 has zero effect.

    Supernova = more cosmic rays = more clouds = cooling

    This one could really cool us? Taliban is ok now, soon they will visit White House Again as Freedom fighters and have Space Shuttle Launches dedicated after them again?

  48. Scarlet Pumpernickel says:

    Could supernovas send supercharged gravitons our way and disrupted earth’s gravity which in turn caused an earthquake?

    Funny one of them looks like Mula Omar LOL

  49. Scarlet Pumpernickel says:

    Supernova could produce these, maybe they cause giant eruptions/earthquakes

    Was there a supernova around the 1960s Chile/Alaska big earthquakes?

    Maybe the wave came 1st and did Japan?

    What about the sun, what caused it to flare up so much

    Nice Volcano timeline

    BTW off on volcano expedition of Costa Rica/Nicaragua/Guatemala soon :)

  50. E.M.Smith says:


    Interesting, if speculative, stuff… Never thought about the impact of a load of space particles on fault lines…

  51. George says:

    Here it comes

    Spain and Italy were both told to brace for a debt downgrade after a leading rating agency concluded that a “comprehensive solution to the eurozone crisis is technically and politically beyond reach”.

  52. E.M.Smith says:

    Oh My!

    A slam against the ECB and a downgrade with warnings of more to come… I can tell I’m going to be busy this weekend…

    Poor Belgium.. you don’t have a functioning government for a few months (quarters? years?) and someone downgrades your bonds ;-)

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