Welcome to European Tribune. It's gone a bit quiet around here these days, but it's still going.

Vampire Squid and the Fed

by Crazy Horse Mon Sep 29th, 2014 at 02:13:21 PM EST

I haven't read through (or listened to) a story Michael Lewis is pushing regarding the  NY Fed's "Regulation" of Big Banks ; with a transaction between Goldman and Santander as a highlight.

I don't know if this story appears elsewhere on ET in the past days, but immediately felt I should post it here.

front-paged by afew

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LQD: BP, Corexit and Coverup

by Crazy Horse Sat Sep 6th, 2014 at 08:23:01 AM EST

A US judge has ruled that BP is guilty of gross negligence in the Deepwater oil catastrophe. If upheld (of course BP will appeal) it will increase the fine from $1100/barrel to $4300/barrel, totaling an estimated $18 Billion.

BP had already plead guilty to 14 felonies, with a fine of $4.5B in a plea bargain with the US Gov! (Yes, felonies.)

So how does one count the number of barrels already spilled, especially when BP publicly stated it was leaking 5000 barrels/day, while internal reports stated the leak could be between 62,000 and 146,000 barrels per day?

A colleague of mine has now reported for the first time the effects of using as "dispersant" Corexit, both on the health of some 47,000 cleanup workers, and how the amount of oil spilled was camouflaged.

Read on to discover why I continue to use the word poison in describing fossil fuels.

front-paged by afew

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Dying in the Anthropocene II: LQD

by Crazy Horse Wed Dec 18th, 2013 at 03:12:48 PM EST

Remember that dire diary i posted some while back, regarding how close we are to catastrophe in our lifetimes? Dying in the Anthropocene

The Nation: Coming Instant Planetary Emergency

I haven't returned to Mount Rainier to see just how much further that glacier has receded in the last few years, but recently I went on a search to find out just how bad it might turn out to be. I discovered a set of perfectly serious scientists--not the majority of all climate scientists by any means, but thoughtful outliers--who suggest that it isn't just really, really bad; it's catastrophic. Some of them even think that, if the record ongoing releases of carbon dioxide into the atmosphere, thanks to the burning of fossil fuels, are aided and abetted by massive releases of methane, an even more powerful greenhouse gas, life as we humans have known it might be at an end on this planet. They fear that we may be at--and over--a climate change precipice hair-raisingly quickly.

Good journalism, from serious scientists out on the edge.

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Dying in the Anthropocene

by Crazy Horse Mon Nov 11th, 2013 at 03:27:23 PM EST

Is it possible for today's busy humans to grok the catastrophe they're creating. I don't mean the fact that we barely have democratic governments any more, much less trustworthy or even visionary leaders. I don't mean neo-feudalism at the hands of global banks. I mean the real problems.

This March, Admiral Samuel J. Locklear III, the commander of the United States Pacific Command, told security and foreign policy specialists in Cambridge, Mass., that global climate change was the greatest threat the United States faced -- more dangerous than terrorism, Chinese hackers and North Korean nuclear missiles. Upheaval from increased temperatures, rising seas and radical destabilization "is probably the most likely thing that is going to happen..." he said, "that will cripple the security environment, probably more likely than the other scenarios we all often talk about.''

Locklear's not alone. Tom Donilon, the national security adviser, said much the same thing in April, speaking to an audience at Columbia's new Center on Global Energy Policy. James Clapper, director of national intelligence, told the Senate in March that "Extreme weather events (floods, droughts, heat waves) will increasingly disrupt food and energy markets, exacerbating state weakness, forcing human migrations, and triggering riots, civil disobedience, and vandalism."

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LQD: Nuclear Attack

by Crazy Horse Mon Nov 4th, 2013 at 12:32:46 PM EST

We're seeing a new propaganda push from the nuclear advocates worldwide. Fitting nicely with both the strong attack against renewables, and the push for austerity. Almost pathetic in the professionalism of triviality, even laughable, except of course it's working.

But of course there's also this issue about Fukushima itself: how can anyone be promoting nuclear power when we've got that plant leaking radiation all over the place? Well, as I've pointed out not entirely seriously here the radiation leakage from Fukushima is of the order of the amount of radiation that humans get from eating bananas. We don't get very excited about the risks of eating bananas so we probably shouldn't get all that excited about the risks from Fukushima. Absolutely certainly there's no risk to anyone at all outside the plant itself: all these stories of the Pacific Ocean turning into a radioactive wasteland that will kill us all are just that, stories. And remarkably ill informed ones as well.

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Pataphysical Oarfishing

by Crazy Horse Mon Oct 21st, 2013 at 03:22:20 PM EST

Over the past months on ET, we've been treated to many authoritative discussions about the Ganz Genau-ness of empirically tested models of the global economy, and the completely exact science of of carbon and methane in the atmosphere and oceans. Not to mention that EPR reactors will operate until 2400 AD, should one ever get built on time, much less fired up, or down, as the case may be.

Diluvially, we've stimulated almost zero discussion on the ability of oarfish to predict large movements of the earth. Luckily, a British science journal, The Telegraph (noted for predicting the Fukushima melt), opens the door for pataphysical discombobulations.

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Fracking Cracking???

by Crazy Horse Thu Aug 8th, 2013 at 03:44:22 AM EST

 Living Green: Livestock Falling Ill in Fracking Regions...

In the midst of the domestic energy boom, livestock on farms near oil-and-gas drilling operations nationwide have been quietly falling sick and dying. While scientists have yet to isolate cause and effect, many suspect chemicals used in drilling and hydrofracking (or "fracking") operations are poisoning animals through the air, water, or soil.
Exposed livestock "are making their way into the food system, and it's very worrisome to us," Bamberger says. "They live in areas that have tested positive for air, water, and soil contamination. Some of these chemicals could appear in milk and meat products made from these animals."

In Louisiana, 17 cows died after an hour's exposure to spilled fracking fluid, which is injected miles underground to crack open and release pockets of natural gas. The most likely cause of death: respiratory failure.
In New Mexico, hair testing of sick cattle that grazed near well pads found petroleum residues in 54 of 56 animals.
In northern central Pennsylvania, 140 cattle were exposed to fracking wastewater when an impoundment was breached. Approximately 70 cows died, and the remainder produced only 11 calves, of which three survived.
In western Pennsylvania, an overflowing wastewater pit sent fracking chemicals into a pond and a pasture where pregnant cows grazed: Half their calves were born dead. Dairy operators in shale-gas areas of Colorado, Pennsylvania, West Virginia, and Texas have also reported the death of goats.
Ambient air testing by a certified environmental consultant detected elevated levels of benzene, methane, chloroform, butane, propane, toluene, and xylene--and well testing revealed high levels of sulfates, chromium, chloride, and strontium.

Please remember the authors characterize this as a preliminary study (although peer-reviewed), but notice how the industry responds...

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Fukushima: Horrendous

by Crazy Horse Fri Aug 2nd, 2013 at 05:22:19 AM EST

Recent stories coming out of Fukushima have been horrible, especially if one "believes" that the oceans have something to do with our quality of life, if not life itself.

I ran across even more recent stories which leave horrible in the cesium dust.

Fukushima: From Horrible to Horrendous

The chairman of the NRA also says (via the New York Times):

"Considering the state of the plant, it's difficult to find a solution today or tomorrow... That's probably not satisfactory to many of you. But that's the reality we face after an accident like this... We don't truly know whether that will work...."

Indeed, technology doesn't currently even exist to stabilize and clean up Fukushima, and Tepco - with no financial incentive to actually fix things - has only been pretending to clean it up.

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Pataphysical Slot Machine

by Crazy Horse Sun Sep 9th, 2012 at 04:38:21 AM EST

i don't know what Pataphysics is; that makes me some kind of expert. And Tour Guide. Is it worth a Tour? Well, through the Door then, or down the Rabbit Whole.

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Prague Spring and LSD

by Crazy Horse Mon Aug 20th, 2012 at 03:55:30 AM EST

Not much time this AM, so will keep this short. Because today's headline regards the Invasion against Prague Spring, I wanted to highlight what I believe is a key angle.

There was a huge amount of LSD research going on then, as well as a flourishing underground scene. It has been reliably reported that Alexander Dubc̆ek himself had participated. Here is a recent follow-up report.

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Obama's State Of The Union: LQD

by Crazy Horse Wed Jan 25th, 2012 at 01:38:08 PM EST

Yahoo Whopee Shit. He came down on windpower's side, calling for a continuation of the Production Tax Credit and some other green goodies. No, not Al Green, he wasn't singing last night.

But he also said some things which make me cringe. Some speech highlights after the jump (fall?).

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Floating Offshore/ EWEA Offshore 2011

by Crazy Horse Fri Dec 2nd, 2011 at 04:20:29 PM EST

CH knows he's supposed to preparing for his next birthday, but he's had so many already that they tend to blur. So he goes back to how he began in wind. 1974, met the man who became one of my mentors, who introduced me right then to the idea of floating wind.

The Captain is no longer with us, but he would be amazed that it's finally beginning, and amazed that it's taken this sick civilization so long.

EdP has installed a normal Vestas machine on a floating tripod, just in time to make a splash at Offshore 2011.   Read it here

The austerity mongers might miss the significance, but here's a big step for a Portugal which used to rule the waves. And this tripod floater design was first diagramed for me at a backroom beer fest of the Netherlands contingent at the very first EWEA Offshore event, Brussels 2002. It's reality now. (I still have the placemat, unless i gave it to the Captain.)

His were different, but the thought was the same. Here's the cover of an early National Geographic.

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Half-Year Fukushima Meltdown Remembrance

by Crazy Horse Thu Sep 15th, 2011 at 01:19:44 AM EST

Today (11 September) is the six-month anniversary of the beginning of the meltdown, caused in part by the "can't happen here" combination of giant earthquake and tsunami. I wish everyone, pro and anti alike, would try to take some time to reflect on the capabilities of this civilization we live in.

front-paged by afew

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Ultimate LQD

by Crazy Horse Tue Jul 26th, 2011 at 04:44:58 PM EST

‎"Ancient Rome declined because it had a Senate; now what's going to happen to us with both a Senate and a House?"
- Will Rogers

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Disappeared Fukushima Thread

by Crazy Horse Sun Jun 12th, 2011 at 10:03:44 AM EST

Coupla weeks since we turned to the disaster in Japan. Being good media children.

Spin's in overdrive. CEO of Germany's biggest energy "whatever" calls Frau Merkel an "eco-dictator." Nuclear Plants are virtually carbon free. And economically viable.

"Melt through" sounds so much more benign than your average "meltdown," though experts tell us its worse. the scarcity of facts scares me the most.

Perhaps this is the place to begin another debate on nuclear power?

frontpaged - Nomad

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Bremen Wahl (Election) Results

by Crazy Horse Tue May 24th, 2011 at 07:01:35 PM EST

Nothing changed really, so there's not much to report. In fact, the SPD has remained in power since the last war ended. The past few times with Greens. Sure, Bremen's broke, but who isn't? Not much noteworthy, 'cept a few historical wrinkles, so no need to read on.

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Rapture Analysis

by Crazy Horse Thu May 19th, 2011 at 03:38:53 PM EST

Making fun of the Rapture appears in comments on several recent threads, if not throughout the known internet. In fact, there's a facecrack site which has hundreds of thousands of people signing up for "looting," which of course is why these small minded idiots will not be doing much flying. Check it out, the group is awaiting the reply from 387,445 lost souls.

I've learned a great deal about global economics by being here, which has made me a worser person. Not particularly devilish, exactly, but even evil eye recoil at the mocking laughter heaped on those privy to insider tips. Perhaps the prejudging is premature.

Perhaps you should consider some of the results from the series of test runs we performed at the behest of the Old Trinity.

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Question on Background Radiation

by Crazy Horse Wed Mar 30th, 2011 at 05:29:11 PM EST

This is worse than an LQD. This diary is simply a question.
What is the influence of atmospheric nuclear detonations, greater than 2,000, AND the sum total of accidents (accidents?), on measurement of background radiation?

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ET Stays On The Reactor Case...

by Crazy Horse Sat Mar 26th, 2011 at 04:01:05 AM EST

... even if the media is getting tired of it (and its repercussions.)

To sum up, we've got:

  •  Stray neutron beams unaccounted for, what?
  •  How did such hot water get in the turbine halls?
  •  The situation in Japan seems to highlight the many loose threads left over from Chernobyl, which had of course fallen under the radar.
  •  A growing understanding that this is a very big deal, about which we have very little understanding.

We are just beginning to fathom what this means to Japan, and the rest of us. But here's a place to continue to report and dissect news as it happens.

Put this here because the other thread is getting filled.

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Merkel's New (Old) Two-Speed Europe

by Crazy Horse Fri Feb 4th, 2011 at 06:17:07 AM EST

Der Spiegel   SPIEGEL alert  has an article in english regarding a new plan to coordinate EU economies, reminiscent of Wolfgang Schäuble's two-speed Europe proposal years ago.

She was interested in a productive atmosphere for talks because she wanted to win over Barroso for a far greater plan. It is a plan that has evolved slowly -- Merkel had to warm up to the idea herself -- and she knows that it won't appeal to the head of the Commission. Dubbed the "pact for competitiveness," the plan that Merkel has in mind could permanently change the structure of the European Union.

The idea, which the chancellor conveyed to her guest in English, calls for closer cooperation among the member states of the euro zone. It would entail more closely harmonizing their financial, economic and social policies. Merkel hopes that this would prevent the economies of the euro countries from diverging as much as they have over the past few years. If fully adopted, it would take European cooperation to a whole new level.
But now she intends to fundamentally change things. With her plan, the chancellor wants to do more than just go on the offensive politically. She has also set out to rectify the weakness that the former long-serving Commission President Jacques Delors considers a basic "design flaw" in the monetary union: Although there is a common currency in Europe, there is no corresponding common economic policy.

The Merkel pact aims to remedy this shortcoming, at least in part. According to the plan, the euro-zone countries would coordinate their economic policies far more closely in the future, thus playing a leadership role within the entire EU. What Merkel has in mind is essentially nothing other than the "two-speed Europe" that her finance minister, Wolfgang Schäuble, similarly proposed many years ago.

The "plan has been developed in secret, and is to be presented to the EU summit leaders on Friday. It was presented to Barroso last Tuesday. Thought this should have it's own diary for discussion, since it echoes themes already under discussion here.

frontpaged - Nomad

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