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07 March 2010 @ 08:49 pm
Is there any book you can read over and over again without ever getting sick of it? Do you discover something new every time you read it?

The Bible
. I would say George Friedman's Next 100 Years. On school nights, I like to read something before I go to bed and if I don't have anything I like to look through the book and when I read through it, I'll usually find something I missed or misinterpreted. Its not the absolute best book I have read, its certainly worth reading, but it's not without its faults, like its lack of citations and an index.
01 November 2009 @ 09:50 pm
So last night I watched Nausicaa and the Valley of the Winds with peanut gallery commentary with none other than AtLF. No I didn't see the entire movie, but from what I did see, it did remind me what I dislike about the message of many environmentalist. Now, there are many environmentalists that can be described in four words (or four letter words for that matter!): sensationalist, alarmist, unintelligent and uncompromising. These are the kind I don't like. They're usually the ones who advertise very niche solutions to saving the environment, this includes things like buying a hybrid car, putting solar panels on your roof, riding your bike to work etc.

Now, these are all fine and dandy solutions to reducing your carbon footprint, but I think environmentalists forget they are advertising to people. The problem with a lot of green products is that they require a great change in life style. OK I can reduce my carbon footprint by riding a bike to work, but its not practical. That's the key thing here. The thing is, many solutions to weening ourselves off of hydrocarbons just aren't very practical. We can produce all our energy from carbon neutral sources, but people are hardly convinced of the necessity of such a system to justify the costs. At best, people might be willing to let them supplement current energy sources, but by no means replace.

Now you may think "Cuppa, environmentalism is totally practical!" It would be, but its ultimately something that in many cases offer few tangible benefits for the cost or the compromise in life style for my or anyone else's liking. The problem with environmentalism is that in many cases its extreme. Its a compromise between growth and harmony, humans are bastards or not or life with modern technology or life without it. If environmentalism can show that you can have a green society with growth, with people who can exploit it yet live in harmony with it or with modern technology then I'd go for it, but as it stands, its not really able to do so.

Tangent aside, what did I think of Nausicaa? From what I saw, it was okay. I may want to see it again so I can see the beginning but overall it was an okay film. What I disliked about it was how its villains were, to a degree, Captain Planet stupid. Remember how in Captain Planet how the villains would pollute just for the fuck of it? It was like that in this movie, only to a much lessor extent. But I suppose it did make it funnier and easier to poke fun at. It was there though, and I felt slightly irritated. What I did find neat was all the airplanes and the impact of the toxic forest on societies. In closing, two articles I read on Foreign Policy that are relevant to all this talk of environmentalism:

Is a green world a safer world?
Seven myths about alternative energy
Current Mood: amusedamused
08 October 2009 @ 10:25 pm
So forget the China and Brazil editorials I was planning. I may do an editorial sometime, but I was tackling topics far too broad and I wouldn't be able to write them for anytime significant for either nation. I just couldn't do it. I may however, decide to take up writing editorials assuming a topic comes up of interest that I have enough to say about (take for example what I wrote about the F-22).
Current Mood: contemplativecontemplative
28 September 2009 @ 09:01 pm
So seeing as a good fifty percent of my friends list updated, I think I will post something too.

I still have yet to finish my China editorial, I was close but I decided to scrap my work and start anew, at the time of writing, only the introduction and conclusion are written. Seeing as I don't really have much else to say, I'll add some articles of interest:


Current Mood: awakeawake
08 September 2009 @ 10:09 pm
I some of my grades in my classes and they were very eye opening. And pretty bad. Ultimately, my current style of working doesn't get things done.

I also intend to post some editorials in the future. I have two planned: One on China, the other on Brazil.
Current Mood: draineddrained
03 August 2009 @ 07:48 pm
John Bolton interviewed by John Stewert, and commentary that makes good arguments against his views.

A regime change does not mean that the regime will be pro US. The pro liberal protesters that you saw in June do not represent the majority and Ahmadinejad, would have, with or without election fraud, won the election.

People seem to like to think democracy automatically means pro western, liberalism, free markets etc. It doesn't. Just because people can vote doesn't mean they will vote for someone who respects their rights or support free markets. Interestingly enough, many women voted for Ahmadinejad and Salvador Allende was a Chilean Marxist who was democratically elected into power. Both show that democracy does not come with western institutions and ideas.

More later, if I feel like it.
Current Mood: annoyedannoyed
26 July 2009 @ 05:06 pm
So recently, I have been reading through Fund for Peace analysis of the failed state index. Think of it as supplementary material to help you understand why Russia is 71/177 or why Norway is the least failed state (177/177). So I was reading through the analysis of Angola and something came to my head : "I really enjoy knowing that Kuwait is progressive and pro western, or how Poland made one of the most successful transitions from a command to market economy, I know details like these of these nations, but not their capitals." This brought me back to a guy I knew in my speech class. We had a show and tell and what he did was bring in nothing at all, instead, he just drew a globe on the board and proceeded to tell us a funny little story:

"My brother and always used to quiz each other on the capitals of the world and he would always win. So what I did over the winter break was I studied the capitals of the world just so I could beat him..."

The rest went on how he wants to have a job in the UN and how he believes how since he knows the capital of a nation he should know a little bit about it too, however, I don't remember it verbatim so I won't reproduce it here. But there is something about that  that evokes envy. I even tested him and he was not beaten. Funnily enough, we went to the computer lab later for the speeches we were writing for and there was this program that quizzed you on the capitals and I actually corrected him a few times.

People just forget sometimes it seems.

ETA (8/9/09):Just some small errors I noticed and wanted to fix
Current Mood: nostalgicnostalgic
19 July 2009 @ 08:02 pm
I came back today. We pick up the dog from boarding tomorrow. We actually came back a day early, the resort hotel didn't give us much to do, so we decided to check out today. The trip was fun but it really reminds me of why I hate my brother. My brother is a nice guy, don't get me wrong but there are times where he is just so utterly grating. It makes me wonder who's the twenty year old here, me or him?

In speaking of hate, I had a hero BSoD moment with Brode for a couple days due to a debate. But that subsided, I very fondly remember spending most of my computer time trying to debate something with him on deviant art. Time which would be better spent writing about my day on here, or reading.

There was also the riverwalk, which was neat. Had a lot of good restaurants. One place I remember the most is a seafood place called Landry's Seafood House. Good food. Excellent deserts.

We also hit SeaWorld. The Shamu show was very cheesy, there was also the water park. I have very fond memories of burning my feet on the ground there. The last thing we did there was go on a river rapids ride. Amazingly, my mom didn't get wet from the waterfall this time.

And lastly, the Hyatt resort hotel. They had a pool so we went there for a day and realized there wasn't much else to do there. We decided to check out a day early and now I'm here. This also marks the half way point of my summer, I have about 6 weeks left. I could also say its a true start to my summer as I don't have any college courses to attend or wisdom teeth to be removed.

Current Mood: draineddrained
14 July 2009 @ 05:17 pm
For the past four weeks, I had to go to a community college from Monday to Thursday, the reason? Speech class. This week, I only to go for two days to listen to classmates speeches and present my own. I did a presentation on Concorde, you could do it on anything you wanted, and it showed. People did everything from Arms Scandals to Ballet. My sister did one on young adult books. With these speeches, it reminded me what always drives me mad about class presentations like this is that people aren't always good at presenting their ideas and the sad part is, sometimes people had some really cool topics.

But as far as I am concerned, I finished my speech, got my speech credit, and got some college credit to boot. What lies ahead however? On Thursday, I get to go to San Antonio, I might try to see if I could bring along a laptop and post on the go, or just do a post when I come back.

Current Mood: accomplishedaccomplished
What challenges stand in the way of your ideal lifestyle? How are you working to overcome them?
Reality. Drugs.

Actually, in reality. My ideal lifestyle would involve me and my wife traveling world. The only problem is:
-No wife
-No job
-I'm only sixteen

So as you can see, I lack a woman to travel the world with, not old enough to marry, and not enough money to fund the expedition. So as you can imagine, my main goals are getting that wife, getting the education needed for that job and the last and most challenging easiest part of this is getting older.