Post for Aug 13-19 2017 (updated Aug 16)

TaN (updated): Today (August 16), an article in Naturalnews titled “Processed meats or cigarettes — which gives you cancer more quickly?” by a certain S D Welles illustrates perfectly the argument that there is no such thing as “lesser of two evils”.  It is but a clever scheme to get people to do evil or harmful things.

Making a choice between (or among) two or more things that are (all) evil is a trick to get a person to make a choice, but whichever choice is made, it will still be evil.  And as discussed and elaborated in previous TaNs, there is no such thing as Lesser of Evils.

So, in answer to the question in the article title, the question of which gives you cancer more quickly is misleading and it does not matter because you still get cancer.  The choice presented is but an illusion, a ploy to get someone to make a selection of which both have the same evil or harmful result.

TaN (updated): Another article today likewise in Naturalnews titled “Vertical-axis wind turbines potential sources of cheaper electricity in urban and suburban areas, researchers discover” by one Frances Bloomfield is a vindication of my earlier argument that vertical-blade or -fin turbines are more efficient than the conventional lateral type or version.  By “lateral”, I mean that the fins or blades are aligned horizontal to each other, that they are perpendicular to the (spin) axis in arrangement, like the common household electric fans and in external propeller fixed- or rotary-winged aircraft.

I have been arguing and proposing that vertical blades (aligned parallel to the axis) is a better design because of several reasons: [1] they can adjust automatically to different wind speeds and can be made to function even with a very slight breeze; [2] they do not have to be “pointed” towards the wind to function, the wind can come from any direction and even vary hither and yonder and it would still catch the wind; and, [3] they can be segmented on a tall mast to catch winds at different levels and each can function at different speeds.

I first noticed the superior design many years ago on rotating advertisements that are painted on vertical fins on the sidewalk.  They spin no matter which direction the wind is coming from — except from an up-down direction but no wind moves in that manner anyway.  The speed and efficiency would depend on the design of the blades — i.e., how curved are the S-shaped blades, especially at the edges.

TaN (updated): Meanwhile, in the front page of The Philippine STAR (still same day), a photograph captioned with “YUMYUM: Agriculture Secertary Emmanuel Piñol (right) and Pampanga Vice Gov Dennis Pineda eat balut and fried chicken, yesterday, in San Luis town, bird flu Ground Zero” and credited to photographer Michael Vargas shows the two aforementioned government officials feasting.  Its purpose, I would suppose, is to quell fears of the spread of bird flu and intended to allay fears of the consuming public.

In such public display, I would not put too much confidence in it because it would run counter to logic that whoever thought of and provided the publicity meal to prepare food that is contaminated with bird flu — aside from the fact that bird flu is supposed to be a threat to birds, especially nutritionally malnourished commercially farmed birds, and not the eggs which is what “balut” is.  It would not be wise to expose the government (“guinea pigs”) officials to any health danger — i.e., because otherwise they risk reaping their ire if and when they do get infected.

Photo ops of public or government officials showing them eating whatever the consuming public is supposed to be wary of due to rumors of health risks in specific food products cannot be believed.  The “guinea pig” officials will always be ensured that what they will demonstrate eating will be of the utmost untainted food.  There is no guarantee that what we will be buying and eating will be of the same risk-free quality as those in the photo op.  It is all a gimmick, a stunt to allay fears of the public.

TaN: Climate change and global warming is still undergoing a lot of debate and scientific scrutiny.  And, assuming, without admitting, that human activities — power generation, emissions from agricultural activities, internal combustion exhaust (from land, sea, and air transports), heating and cooling systems in residences and buildings, commercial and industrial business activities, etc — are the principal causes, the issue most people are missing is that palliative solutions are being done instead of addressing the root causes which is to stop all activities that significantly contribute to the increase in global temperature.  [This is assuming that climate change and global warming are really happening and are the results of man’s doing.]

Moreover, what exacerbates the whole situation is that, even though many people acknowledge and agree that something has to be done (to address the issue), everyone is waiting and expecting the other person to be the one to make the sacrifice and put in the effort instead of themselves.  It is always the other individual who is expected to be the one to act and make all the sacrifices while we simply lay back and enjoy the fruits of other people’s labor.

In any case, if we examine closely and carefully both sides of the issue, focusing on the information, that both sides claim to be factual, with critical and discerning minds, we will notice the flaws and disconnects and conflicting so-called facts on both sides.

Although it is understandable that each side is interested in winning the argument and there are certain parties on or of both sides who will do (almost) anything to ensure victory — the fanatics and the paid shills and spin doctors and lackeys.  And it is in this light that the issues are muddled and mixed with lies and half or hidden truths so as to create a convincingly argument at the expense of truth and accuracy.

Finally, from the climate change/global warming side, certain information and evidences simply do not add up, especially if you go far back enough into historical, archæological, and geological records.

Meanwhile, from the opposition side of the issue, even as new evidence regarding the claimed GHGs (greenhouse gases) being the chief causes behind climate change and global warming arise, certain questions need answers, like: If global temperatures are not rising, then why has the ice cap of Mt Kilimanjaro retreated (and continues to retreat) to less than 15 percent of its 1912 size — from “Mt Kilimanjaro Ice Cap Continues Rapid Retreat” from the New York Times issue dated November 2, 2009 by a Sindya N Bhanoo (http://www.nytimes.com/2009/11/03/world/africa/03melt.html?_r=0).  A more recent account may be referred to in URL: http://adventureblog.nationalgeographic.com/2015/01/13/photos-ice-climbing-kilimanjaros-melting-glaciers/ (photographs to have been taken late October of 2014 but posted January 2015).

Another, by David Suzuki — http://davidsuzuki.org/issues/climate-change/science/climate-change-basics/climate-change-deniers/ as of June 11, 2017 — argues that climate change deniers have recently repeatedly shifted their positions and arguments and says (certain) deniers are now acceding (average) global surface temperature has actually what climate change “deniers or co-conspirators” have been saying ever since.  But this is expected because the truth will always come out in the end — some sooner, others later, and then longer — but they will do it discretely and surreptitiously and time it when people are “concerned” with or distracted by other matters.

My take on all this is that man’s (economic) activities does have some impact on the climate but I seriously doubt if there is enough significance that it will sufficiently alter or cause climate to change to such a degree as to severely impact planetary meteorology or weather systems.  It must remembered Sir Isaac Newton’s Third Law of Motion (Action and Reaction) and most people engrossed in the climate change debate appear to — wittingly or not — ignore the corresponding reactions of and from nature for each action of man.

A case in point would be — as mentioned by Mike Adams in his video “Why carbon dioxide is the ‘Miracle Molecule of Life’” — the impact of a lot of carbon dioxide in the atmosphere where it may be a greenhouse gas that traps solar radiation preventing it to return to outer space at the end of the day but it is also a vital ingredient in plant metabolism to produce its own food.  With increase carbon dioxide presence in the atmosphere, there should be a corresponding increase in plant growth and it is known that plants absorb much of the solar radiation to cool down the planet.

This can be attested in the New Manila model in Quezon City (in the Philippines) where there is so much lush greenery (decades-old trees) that the ambient temperature is usually 2 to 3 degrees (C) cooler than the surrounding areas.

It is the “concrete or urban jungle” that is a major factor in the increased feeling of heat because solar radiation is bounced and amplified by hard flat smooth surfaces (such as concrete walls, glass windows, metal roods, and asphalt or concrete roads) — much like what happens with a laser (light amplification by stimulated emission of radiation).

TaN: Of the environmental movement’s 3Rs — i.e., reduce, recycle, re-use — “Reduce” is and should be the most important and be pushed aggressively because it has the greatest and most beneficial to he environmental cause. It ensures that there will be less waste and unnecessary discards to deal with.  There will be less to re-use and to recycle.  Less things to recycle and re-use means less resources to be “harvested” from the environment which leads to a more sustainable development and more responsible use of available resources.

The next best is Re-use, leaving Recycle to be the least best of the three.  Re-use means that what has been used should be re-used repeatedly whenever applicable and possible until it is no longer viable for re-use.  This mitigates the need to purchase or acquire new items which leads to more waste and discards.

But, recent developments in plastic bags, specifically and particularly grocery or shopping bags, see the use of bio-degradable plastics which are supposed to be environmentally-friendly but does not bode very well for re-users because the plastic, its “expiry date” unknown to the re-user, would bio-degrade anytime and frequently occurs during inopportune times.

Recycling, which has become and is the most popular, is the least desirable because it merely encourages those responsible for producing the waste — mostly packaging, containers (bags and boxes), and wrappings — and discards to produce more.  They would claim that they are providing valuable assistance by “creating” job opportunities for recyclers and their downstream industries and businesses (such as vendors and distributors).  However, in reality, it is merely an excuse they use to justify increasing production of waste and discards — under the guise of supporting rising “cottage” industries to provide livelihood projects for the indigenous and the marginalized and the jobless who cannot, instead of will or do not, find job opportunities.

In addition, (again) due to the introduction of the bio-degradable plastics, this now poses a problem for recyclers who use them as resource materials for their livelihood products.  Imagine using the biodegradables and your recycled product (say, a bag) “decides” to break apart in the middle of whatever you are doing — like when you are carrying groceries (in an eco-friendly sando bag) or your “eco-fashionable” hand bag or your recycled (plastic) home decor and, following Murphy’s Law — “If anything can go wrong, it will and at the worst possible moment” — it biodegrades at the worst moment in the most unlikely place and causes embarrassment (among other things).

Finally, some years back, in a film feature from the Japanese Embassy, a process was developed to reverse and recover the oil used in plastic making.  I wonder what happened to it.  If I recall correctly, there was some kind of a compound or enzyme extracted from the orange peel.  I think we should give it another consideration, especially with all the mountains and oceanic islands of plastic trash and discards accumulating.

TaN: Although it is not illegal to withdraw (or reduce) a (commercial) benefit, it is unethical since it implies bad faith.  Something beneficial given voluntarily to a client/customer/patron then withdrawn or reduced implies that the business has prioritize (further) profit over customer satisfaction.

In business, once a benefit has been voluntarily granted, it can not be changed for the better or for some other equivalent.   To reduce, much less totally withdraw, implies that the business granted the benefit only to “bait” customers/clients.

Reasons given for the reduction or withdrawal of the (commercial) benefit will only (be perceived as) attempts to justify the decision, as alibis, as a means to convince the public of a profit-based corporate policy decision — and much of the public will readily and “gullibly” accept it, especially if it is crafted or worded carefully and cleverly.

All in all, since public opinion is not particularly strong especially along this matter, the public is not expected to react or if there is a detectable or noticeable reaction would actually amount little or no consequence (from the concerned entity that withdrew or reduced the once-freely-given benefit).

As a last word, morality or ethics trumps legality always.  Legality has evolved — due to the increased interaction between cultures and societies that once was far and remote from each other — and had become something that ensures peaceful and harmonious co-existence between and among people of different cultures and backgrounds.  However, due to spreading apathy among men (of morals and integrity), unscrupulous few have hijacked the legal system and has twisted it to suit and conform to their hidden agenda, ulterior motives and self-interests and is able to get around obligations and institutions that are supposed to protect the majority against exploitation and manipulation.  Legality today is not what it used and ought to be.

TaN: What we do today with food (in the First World and the highly urbanized cities of Third World countries) are no longer good food and good presentation.  It has devolved in opulence.

What many so-called chefs do to food today can no longer be considered food preparation or cooking.  I do not know what it is called but I am sure it is not or cannot be food.

It is both really irritating and exasperating, at least to me, that there are people with just too much time on their hands and with nothing better to do that to tinker with food.  Stop playing with food.  Food is for eating.  Appreciating — not admiration — food should be limited to how it is presented — simply and sumptuously.  They should not be in teensy tiny portions and arranged in some bizarre manner that will just tempt and arouse the taste buds but will not even reach the stomach.

Food should be respected and not “ridiculed” in some kind of “artistic” design.  The primary and sole purpose of food is to nourish and not to be admired.  What these so-called “artistic” chefs are doing to food today is SICK!

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