Sunday, August 16, 2009

big plans, no clue

Crow here. susan used to tell people she didn't like wearing glasses so had the windshield of her car ground to her current prescription. A few of them believed it too. It's funny what you can get folks to take seriously, isn't it? Imagine convincing a good part of the population that Medicare for everybody is a bad idea but it's a really good idea to have their tax money go directly to the richest 1% of the citizenry.

The picture above is an artist's rendering of one of the big geo-engineering ideas for cooling off our overheated planet. Just imagine what could happen if the big optometrist grinding that thing got the specs wrong and corrected for far sighted rather than near. Ooops. You think we've got global warming now?

Then there's this one - ships spraying sea water to create clouds that shield much of the Earth from sunlight and so would lower global temperatures. How about the fact Bill Gates has patented the idea to halt hurricanes by decreasing the surface temperature of the ocean? Does that make you a bit nervous? The patent calls for a large fleet of specially equipped ships which would mix warm water from the ocean surface with colder water down below which could then reduce the heat-driven condensation hurricanes feed upon. The scheme is reminiscent of something Mr. Burns might have concocted in 'The Simpsons' - if he hadn't already blown his master plan on blocking out the sun.

I don't know. It just seems to me people have to change their way of thinking but I've been around long enough to not be entirely hopeful for the intelligence of your species at large. Global warming has so many separate causes and accelerating factors that it's already beyond political control. Every piece of metal sticking out of the ground is a heat coil. The crisis needs an unconscious shift at the same level as the primordial production of oxygen by bacteria at the dawn of life. Long ago a sudden fluctuation triggered a burst of molecular intelligence and a world that began under a canopy of volcanic ash exhaled into a blue sky.

Lizards crawled. Crows flew. Eventually, people dreamed and maybe it's enough to dream of a better world. The Golden Rule has always been a good place to start. Now it's time for me to climb on my perch and put my head where it belongs - under my right wing. Good night and sweet dreams.


Seraphine said...

i think the idea of putting a giant glass lens between us and the sun is stupid.
for one thing, if you think sun spots are bad now, wait until something gets on the giant lens. a piece of dust, a fingerprint, a smudge of grease- it could cause entire nations to go crazy. would there be a lens cloth big enough to clean it?
and two, why take the risk that, with the proper lens correction, the sun could be able to see us clearly? there are some things about human-kid that the sun is better off not knowing.

laughingwolf said...

good thinking, crow...

from my lair i see it this way: hoomanity is too stoopid, for the most part, to do anything more than continue headlong into catastrophe :(

Crow said...

sera - Yep, a giant umbrella is probably the best idea. There could be chains of people passing it from hand to hand at high noon around the planet. Solves both problems and people might learn to work together.

:D wolf - Cheer up. There's probably another species waiting in the wings that thrives on hot weather.. scorpions?

Seraphine said...

i think planting some trees would be easier than holding an umbrella, but hey i'm game for anything.

Seraphine said...

bill gates is a smart guy.
patent any idea, no matter how obvious or crazy it sounds. because somebody will think of a better idea. and they'll have to pay royalties to all the yahoos who filed earlier patents for otherwise obvious ideas.

Crow said...

sera - I think he wants to own the world - or maybe he thinks he already does.

lindsaylobe said...

I note to date there are no geo engineering projects of any scale ever tried and I doubt if their effect could ever be measured or known, particularly in relation to the complexity of climate systems – which is still not thoroughly understood.
But recent studies over here indicate the possibility of an abundant renewable energy supply just below our feet, in the form of hot rocks.

You’re familiar, of course, with molten rock breaking through the earth’s crust to spew lavvy into the atmosphere but in such a state it is far too hot and difficult to harness as a viable energy source. However just below the earth’s surface in Australia lays an abundance of hot granite rocks with enough heat to drive steam turbines and generate electricity.

How does the idea work?

Water is injected into a borehole and circulated through a "heat exchanger" to hot cracked rocks several kilometers below the surface. The water is heated through contact with the rocks and is then returned to the surface through another borehole where it is used to generate electricity. The water is then re-injected into the first borehole to be reheated and used again.

The heat used in this hot rock energy process is eventually replaced by the Earth; it can be classified as renewable energy. It could, potentially provide all of our energy needs in perpetuity.

Best wishes

Anonymous said...

Crow.. I love that you're seeking new and inventive ways to save the Earth's environment from impending doom. But I have one question for you regarding Bill Gates's patent: Can it core a apple?

Randal Graves said...

Since the dawn of time man has yearned to destroy the sun and get patents on everything helpful. This is why I'm glad a British dude invented HTML and not an American. We'd be paying coke money to surf for porn.

Seraphine said...

i have special goggles made to my prescription for snorkeling. otherwise, all i see are the common blurry fish.

Crow said...

lindsay - When I think of how humans have screwed with the ecosphere without even trying I'm afraid of what they'd do intentionally at a large scale.

The idea of hot rock energy is a good one as are a few other innovative ideas I've been flying around to investigate. One of these days I'll be ready to peck out a few words about some systems that seem moderately reasonable to this old bird.

spartacus - From what I understand Bill gates is still much more interested in coring people's wallets rather than making pies. Which reminds me - I wonder if susan has my apple pie a la mode ready yet? I'm a bit peckish.

randal - Yep, mankind even tried to get a patent on me but I hold onto my feathers and keep out of the way of most of them.

sera - susan is currently having prescription windows made for her house so she can see the hummingbirds without looking for her glasses. It's okay for her but everybody else gets a headache.

linda said...

as always, crow, a weirdly interesting and endlessly fascinating look at the strange world of "big plans in the ways of curing our ills"... I thought perhaps you were going to say susan was off doing something to her eyes so she can see better :)although that window idea was not a bad one!

sleep tight

Seraphine said...

think of the poor hummingbirds looking in through the window at susan's enhanced, gigantic eyes!

Crow said...

linda - Hah! You should see some of the weird ideas these people have come up with. On another note, susan mostly prefers her nearsightedness and only rarely witnesses pimples or wrinkles.

sera - All the better to see their beady little eyes with, my dear.

Nancy said...

I always love your posts. They are so intelligent. Crow is an old soul, for sure. I'm not sure we can do anything about what we have put into play, but starting now, in whatever way we can, certainly won't hurt. But we certainly deserve what's coming our way.

The Crow said...

You make so much sense, Crow. I enjoy your posts very much, your Corvidness.


Zee said...

Ah, this is fun.
Reading your post and then all the comments.
I believe three things, first that humans only learn the hard way. Second, that the key of resurrection is found in every persons side-pocket, three: Change is impossible through large scale operations. That is sort of the last resort of desperation.

It is an open secret, that for example General Motors and Ford bought up ANY patent that could improve fuel efficiency, stuffed them into their file cabinets, and locked them up. The reason? Simple, they sleep with the hookers of the oil companies and they are reluctant to give up their addiction.
"Cash for clunkers" for example is a bizarre political twist. You get a 4 grand stipend to buy a new car that is more fuel efficient. This is not about the environment, this is about economics.
US car-makers have produced models over seas that reach unbelievable millage per gallon of gasoline in China and Europe for years, but they don't sell them in America.
How come?
The patents are here, the technology is known, but for some reason or an other it was not economical "feasible" to market those cars. Now they feel the pinch, and maybe all the patents they bought up earlier will see daylight once again.
That's the optimist version.
On the pessimistic side, people only learn when it is almost too late, they need to feel the hammer to understand the crunch.
What a pitiful race we are!

Crow said...

nancy - I'm not so much an old soul as very much a very old Crow but thanks for the suggestion. You're right that all people can do is to keep doing their best and understand that most of the human race has always been in the habit of making the best of a bad situation.

the crow - The pleasure is mutual, Madame :-)

zee - I agree with all three of your conclusions with the addendum that when power and control are given to a very greedy few things get much worse for everyone else including all my brothers and sisters of the natural world. That's essentially what you addressed with your remarks about the big car companies and fuel efficiency. I'm still irritated that humans can't go back to using horses and wagons because most of the horses were killed off years ago. Maybe there'll be trains of people pushing shopping carts instead. Things are going down but there'll be no overall political solution and that's probably good.

Spadoman said...

I've hovered around this post for a few days befoere commenting. Sort of hoping it wouldchange so i wouldn't have to deal with my shame from my own wastefulness.
Frankly, I'm embarrassed to respond to you Crow, I know I am part of the problem.
Sure, I've done some changes. We recycle and compost and try to buy everything we buy NOT wrapped in some sort of plastic, but I fail miserably at the "so much more I can do", we can do, to help slow down and end the global problems we, as dumb humans, are putting the physical earth through right now.
Wholesale changes must be made by all people all over the world to end the cycle, but it may already be too late. Maybe this generation or even the next won't live to see the Sacred Earth Mother die, but as we keep up our wasteful killing ways, it is inevitable that she will die. There are some dead spots already, like cancerous sores, on Mother Earth. We move on, and do what we did to make the sore, somewhere else.
I am ashamed of myself. Believe me Crow, I think of this every time I turn on a water faucet in my home. Yet I am not yet willing to get rid of the faucet and running water.
Thanks for reminding me that I am wasteful and motivate me to change even more.

Peace above all.

Crow said...

spadoman - Apologies from susan for not having updated this post before you felt obliged to answer. Among other things she's been busy painting on silk thus wasting electricity using her drawing lamps, wasting more by steaming the painted silk to set the colors and then she went on to waste water by washing and rinsing the pieces until the water ran clear. Right now she's got a steam iron and her sewing machine plugged in while she's turning the painted bits into useless (but pretty) little bags. Don't feel sorry for what you do because nobody born in this wasteful western culture (or most others) has much choice in the matter. Things are set up in a manner that could make you feel bad just for getting out of bed in the morning and the only real blame to be cast is at those who profit from the discomfort you feel. Even if we and all those who inhabit the planet now disappear the world will heal herself. Never doubt it.

Yours, in Peace and Harmony,
Crow T. Rookery