Category Archives: What to do

From Horsepower to Horse Power. When Trucks stop, Horses start.

Preface. Before the industrial revolution there were only four sources of mechanical power of any economic significance. They were human labor, animal labor, water power (near flowing streams) and wind power.   Work done by animals, especially on farms, was still … Continue reading

Posted in Life Before Oil, Muscle Power | Tagged , , , | 10 Comments

Muscle Power

Preface. Before fossil fuels, the energy to do work came from muscle power and the heat from burning biomass, mainly wood.  When I visited the Deutsches museum in Munich in 2017, I saw two animal treadmills: The first picture shows … Continue reading

Posted in Agriculture, Energy, Life Before Oil, Muscle Power, What to do | Tagged , | 3 Comments

Vaclav Smil. Making the modern world: materials and dematerialization

Preface.  I can’t believe I read this book, it is just a long litany of the  gigantic amounts of materials we exploit, with no analysis, implications, or the meaning of what impact this will have on the planet. I certainly … Continue reading

Posted in Infrastructure, Life Before Oil, Limits To Growth, Peak Resources, Vaclav Smil | Tagged , , | 10 Comments

Rex Weyler on “what to do” about limits to growth, peak energy

Preface. Professor Nate Hagens is teaching a class at the University of Minnesota about the state of the world that may be expanded to all incoming freshmen.  Many despair when they learn about limits to growth and finite fossil fuels.  … Continue reading

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Escape to Mars after we’ve trashed the Earth?

The idea that we can go to Mars is touted by NASA, Elon Musk, and so many others that this dream seems just around the corner.  If we destroy our planet with climate change, pollution, and so on, no problem, … Continue reading

Posted in Climate Change, Extinction, Far Out, Human Nature, Planetary Boundaries, Where to Be or Not to Be | Tagged , , , , , | 5 Comments

Book: John Perlin’s “A Forest Journey: The Story of Wood and Civilization”

Preface.  This contains excerpts from John Perlin’s “A Forest Journey: The Story of Wood and Civilization”. It’s one of my favorite books about natural resources, exploring the role wood has played in the rise and fall of civilizations since they … Continue reading

Posted in Collapse of Civilizations, Collapsed, Deforestation, Life Before Oil, Limits To Growth, Peak Resources, Soil, Wood | Tagged , , , , | 1 Comment

Part 4 Raven Rock. The government abandons plans to aid the public, only the government to survive

Preface. This is the fourth  part of my book review of: Graff, G.M. 2018. Raven Rock. The Story of the U.S. Governments Secret Plan to Save Itself–While the Rest of Us Die. Simon and Schuster.  Clearly if the U.S. government … Continue reading

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Part 3 Raven Rock. The government’s plans for after a nuclear holocaust

This is the third part of my book review of: Graff, G.M. 2018. Raven Rock. The Story of the U.S. Governments Secret Plan to Save Itself–While the Rest of Us Die. Simon and Schuster. This book stresses that a full … Continue reading

Posted in GOVERNMENT, Nuclear, Nuclear, Politics, Where to Be or Not to Be | Tagged , , , , , , | 5 Comments

Part 2 Raven Rock. The U.S. government’s plans to save civilians from nuclear war

Graff, G.M. 2018. Raven Rock. The Story of the U.S. Governments Secret Plan to Save Itself–While the Rest of Us Die. At the outset of the cold war, scientists proposed that nationalism had to go away to prevent nuclear wars, … Continue reading

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What percent of Americans are rational?

Preface. Why does rationality matter — what’s the harm in believing there’s a fat old “Santa Claus” God in the sky noting down every time you’re naughty or nice on trillions of inhabited planets in the universe every second of … Continue reading

Posted in Critical Thinking, Critical Thinking and Scientific Literacy, Religion | Tagged , , , , , , | 3 Comments