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About Pecan

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    The Pie That Was Promised

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  1. It wouldn't surprise me if that sort of thing is considered at some point in the future. It really depends on how desperate the situation gets. We're not that far removed from the dark ages after all - I mean we're basically the same type of animal that was trying to survive in what was a pretty brutal world. I'm fairly certain our lizard brains will figure out how to justify genocides, etc.
  2. I think a wall is inevitable at some point, though down the road a bit. Assuming the pace of warming continues, the US will face a situation in the future where there are literally millions of people trying to get in, at which point the debate will shift and Americans will unite behind extreme policies to keep the riff raff out. Mark my words, Americans will not tolerate millions of climate refugees.
  3. The storms have been increasing in intensity, although this year has been fairly light. My understanding is that as ocean temperatures go up, strength of hurricanes will as well. Also related, I believe, is the heat in the Sahara, which is one of the triggers for these storms to form in the Atlantic. But I don't know if the pace of warming is such that we'll really start seeing a difference in these already-strong storms in say, the next ten years, which are supposedly very critical, which brings me back to my even more gloomy prediction, which is that a whole lot of people are going to die when all of these climate-related impacts start combining systemically to make the planet less inhabitable for our nearly 10 billion world population.
  4. What do you all think it will take to change the debate in the US? I guess it was around 10 years ago, I was talking to my cousin and I told her I thought the situation had to get tangibly worse before the US would sort of wake up and start taking serious steps. And by tangibly worse, what came to mind was really powerful hurricanes laying waste to US cities. That's started happening, but nothing has really changed in terms of policy or how the various segments of the electorate view the climate change issue. What if, one of these years, one of these super storms, or maybe a series of them, wipes out Miami or one of the other major cities in the SE or Gulf Coast? What if New Orleans got hit again by a storm much more powerful than Katrina and did so much damage that much of the population just packed up and moved away? Would something like that do it?
  5. I do agree that human population levels are sort of the elephant in the room. You can't expect to have a population of 10+ billion that consume at the level of Americans, Canadians, Western Europeans, etc., and also expect to have a livable planet. We can talk about clean energy and sustainability all we want, but I'm skeptical that anything we can do (green new deal or whatever) will make any real difference in what will happen in the next 50-100 years. If humans do somehow muddle through the next few centuries, I suspect we'll come out the other end with a much smaller population.
  6. Pecan

    Fourth Quarter 2019 Reading

    I just started The Player of Games. So far, it's a bit better than okay but that's as far as I'll go. Banks had some interesting ideas, very imaginative. But his prose is fairly plain and workmanlike in my opinion, and more and more lately I find that what I really want in an author is that truly superior command of the language that makes the world and the story come to life.
  7. Pecan

    Third Quarter 2019 Reading

    I'm reading Make Me, a Jack Reacher novel that came out a few years ago. I only sort of enjoy these novels because they're so completely formulaic, but gosh darn it they are really well written. That's the part that I like, reading the words. If only Lee Child would branch out a bit and maybe come up with a new character. Reacher really is getting long in the tooth.
  8. India is commonly referred to as a developing country by organizations like UNESCO. I'm not sure why you're so agitated about this particular terminology. It's common usage to refer to India and many other countries as "developing" because in comparison to the US, Canada, Western Europe, Australia, etc., they are at a lower stage of development as measured by various metrics. I'm not an expert on this. I'm just using common and widespread terminology. You are, of course, free to disagree and have your own opinion about what stage of development India or any other country is in. Feel free to look into the standards of measurement that are used, the various indexes that these organizations employ to make these determinations. Knock yourself out. But that doesn't make my use of the terminology incorrect as, again, it is within the bounds of common usage to refer to India as a developing country. It is true though that India has made a lot of progress, lifting millions out of extreme poverty, creating a diverse and multifaceted economy, and yes, the moon shots. But the water crisis is real, and because there are 1.3 billion Indians, it really should be looked at as a global issue.
  9. I referred to the "developing world". I never used the term "undeveloping" or "undeveloped".
  10. A minor win in that I was able to do a decent interval workout on the rower last night. My splits are considerably slower than 2 years ago, but each pull felt decently strong and I could tell my body was becoming accustomed to the movement.
  11. I'm sympathetic, but I just don't see how things can change there. There are too many people, too many class and ethnic divisions, local government that is either corrupt or doesn't know how to manage these issues. And again, so many people and so much poverty. The climate crisis is largely the fault of the industrialized north, but it's the developing world that will be hit with the most misery.
  12. Article on the ongoing water crisis in India: https://newsin.asia/dimensions-of-indias-water-crisis-and-ways-to-meet-it/ They're quite a dysfunctional lot over there and gosh, there are so darn many of them. My understanding at the moment is that roughly 200K Indians die each year due to lack of access to clean drinking water. I expect that number will go up sharply in coming decades. A great deal of human suffering will happen there.
  13. I've really let myself go. I got sick of crossfit and all the rah rah "you've got this!" bullshit a couple of years ago. And then I gave myself to my drug. My drug, as it happens, is best described as indolence, complete and total indolence for well over a year and a half. I've never done real drugs and I barely drink at all. It's just never been my thing. But what I can do, really really well, is absolutely nothing. I'm really good at that. Two years ago I could squat #315 for a 1RM. Now I'm in a situation where 35 air squats leave my legs trembling. Anyway, I'm starting with mini-workouts, trying to get my body used to doing some of these movements again. I'm also looking for a better gym. I have an LA Fitness membership, but that place sucks really bad. There's one rower in the whole building. That's it really. Just kind of wanted to write this down.
  14. How has World On Fire escaped my notice? Odd choice of trailer music, but the show is exactly what I've been wanting. I hope we get it soon in the US.
  15. Pecan

    Mieville made me feel empty

    I really enjoyed The City and The City. He's a really talented writer. However, I've yet to get into any of his other work because I'm not really into "fantastic" sci-fi or fantasy.