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February 22, 2007

Gigantic Asteroid

In his speech “Environmentalism as Religion� Michael Crichton talks about the predictions that scientists have made in the past that turn out to be false. These predictions include running out of fossil fuels or natural resources and the prediction made that said half of the species on Earth will extinct by the year 2000. Obviously these predictions did not come true, but at the time they were made, the majority of the world believed them. Why did people believe this? Because it’s what they wanted to hear. Large companies always knew that burning fossil fuels is bad, but they didn’t have the motivation to do anything about it. Finally someone came along and said if humans continue with their current activities all the fossil fuel on the planet will be used up in X amount of years. Now all of a sudden everyone gets excited because the government gets involved. Now all of the large companies and corporations that have been using all the fossil fuels and polluting the environment have a little motivation to research alternative fuels and practices. That motivation is called money and it comes from the government in the form of grants. The fact of the matter is nobody in the world has any clue to how much oil is left in the Earth. All scientists can do is estimate how much is left using the knowledge they currently have and depending on how they estimate it, there is a wide range of possible answers. This same situation is true for any prediction someone makes about the future. The current prediction that everyone wants to know is how long it will be before the people of Earth are treading water because the ice caps have melted. The fact is nobody will ever know until it happens. There are so many events that can happen to even begin to make this prediction. I think people spend to much time worrying about the future than they do actually doing something about it. Who knows, maybe in ten years the Earth will be destroyed by a gigantic asteroid and all of the thing done to ensure the future will be nothing but a waste of time.


Fossil Fuels

February 8, 2007

HUMANS = ANTS

I like the way Lisa Couturier talks about how human civilization is very similar ant colonies. How the skyscrapers are like ant hills and the roads and highways are like little trails of ants out working. I don’t like it because it’s a new idea I heard and it sounds interesting. I like it because I think about this topic all the time. I think about how humans are just like drones. For most of our lives we go out every morning and do the same thing day after day.
If you compare a colony of ants to human civilization what do you see? You see hundreds of individuals all out doing there job. There are ants that build the intricate tunnels and hills just as humans have construction workers that build the network of roads and buildings. Ants have specialized individuals that do nothing but protect the colony just as we have a military to do our fighting. There are certain ants that do nothing but care for the queen and young larvae just as humans have doctors and nurses specialized in caring for others. Humans have farmers and ranchers to produce food for the communities just as ants have workers that gather food for the colony. The more I look at it, the more human civilization resembles that of an ant colony. Also, the more advanced human civilization gets and the more specialized people get in there jobs the more like ant colonies we become. Back in the day when a family lived by themselves and were self sufficient, they did every thing to survive on their own. They built their own homes and made their own tools. Then they lived in their home and used their tools to farm the land and raise animals for food. They had no need for anyone else and did not resemble a colony of ants at all. Now most people are specialized into one job and that’s the only thing they know how to do. Just like ants.

interesting link

February 1, 2007

Dillard's Blood

After reading “Heaven and Earth in Jest� I get the feeling that Annie Dillard is really in touch with nature. She doesn’t just like nature for the beauty or because it is a peaceful place to escape. I believe she loves nature for the spiritual experiences. She doesn’t just go for a walk in the woods to get away from civilization. She actually goes out and finds a peaceful place to sit. Then she just sits there and takes the nature in and absorbs everything there is to be seen or heard. I think this is why she is such a good nature writer; it lets her describe nature in such detail.
I also think that she doesn’t see death as an ending, but as a beginning for new life. She describes this when she writes about the frog and the giant water bug. Although she is saddened by the death of the frog, she sees that the death can lead to new life for the giant water bug. She explained this situation as one of the many mysterious happenings of nature that the average persons never get to experience. Another such event she writes about is when she sees the mockingbird play a sort of game. One where it falls four stories and right before it hits the ground, spreads its wings and glides gracefully floats into the grass. It’s these experiences that she has that really let her appreciate the full beauty of nature and because of this, she despises what humans have done to modify nature. I see this when she talks about the cows and how they are nothing but walking food. She talks about how the cows are engineered products developed by humans for nothing but food and shoes and how you can’t see though to a cow’s brain because there is too much beef fat behind their eyes.
Dillard has so many experiences with nature that she feels like it is her duty to inform the world of these. She says this when she talks about how she is the arrow of the Native Americans and the blood that drips from the arrow is her book that she writes and disperses though the world.

link