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Total number of comments: 11 (since 2013-11-28 16:32:39)

sona

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  • A Hot Wet Thousand Years and 10 Green Energy Stories to Avert it
    • re your point #2- china claims to have perfected the technology but you what, china says a lot of things but good if they really have

      using molten salt need not be that expensive - it can be cheaper than desalinated sea water currently used in many japanese nuclear plants

    • 'fuku' and 'shima' never used thorium but enriched uranium with toxic byproduct of plutonium

      thorium has a higher neutron yield than uranium, a better fission rating, longer fuel cycles, and does not require the extra cost of isotope separation and does not produce plutonium for bombs - as a happy bonus, it can burn up plutonium and toxic waste from old reactors, reducing radio-toxicity and acting as an eco-cleaner, sort of

      thorium was indeed considered very seriously back in the last century when nuclear energy was being developed but was discarded because there was no military gains to be made - defence was at the forfront of developing that knowhow and defence was not interested in stuff that could not be used offensively

    • no it is not 'vaporware' - whatever that means because i'm sure the word doesn't exist

      india was the first country to introduce a carbon tax and australia is debating the issue since the legislation has yet to pass both the house and the senate although under the current government setup, it will pass

      don't underestimate emerging countries' awareness of the need to balance carbon emissions with their need to generate energy to fight poverty

      your comment is not just dismissive of poverty but also lacks any empathy for all who are being held hostage to the west's profligacy and irresponsibility - a case of i'm a'rite jack and bugger those who live after me - quite reaganesque in its utter selfish stupidity that is devoid of any altruism that we, as humans, are capable of

  • Zewail's 4 point Plan for Egypt
    • a constituent assembly of "wise men" - who may they be? who decides on their wisdom? are women included or is the word 'men' used as a generic term?

      if the the judiciary is envisaged as being independent, why should it have a role in supervising elections? in cases od legally disputed results, that compromises the status of the judiciary - whatever is wrong with an independent electoral commission as is the case in most democracies, including the biggest, most plural and heterogenous one, outside the USA?

      perhaps chemists don't make the the best political thinkers

      el baradei seems to think he has a right to be a leading player in the new era that emerges after mubarak - why? when he hasn't even been living in egypt? or is he a self appointed wise man? don't get me wrong, i have an enormous respect for the man in staring down the US re iran's nuclear program but does that constitute 'wisdom' in crafting a new constitution?

      zewail does not explain how he sees the role of the president of the state vi a vis its parliamentarians in the two chambers - white house or white hall system?

      so many questions ... but oh what fun 'twas to see obama/biden/clinton scrambling to cover up their dooh dahs

      heartfelt good wishes to the egyptians regardless of the troubled road ahead - a change in status quo was necessary - and hats off to the courage of ordinary unarmed civic citizenry

  • Mubarak Turns to Military for Support
    • i had to go and read that piece you linked to

      the first thought that occurred to me was that it was a desperate right wing attempt at cya for ineptitude at both policy and operational levels as well as an obfuscating spin for unfocused reactive confusion

      my personal take is that the uprisings in egypt were too broadbased to be controlled by a handful of organised group(s, including the clergy, military and opposition political parties

      the cia and the US state department were caught flat footed because they had no communication channels to appreciate the anger and revulsion of ordinary individuals at the corruption, nepotism, disempowerment and relative poverty that engendered a 'nothing left to lose' mindset that overpowered any fear of failure

      tunisia was an inspiration certainly and that was to some extent consequent on access to undeniable evidence of that which was common knowledge

      think history will credit assange/wikileaks as a major game changer in this millenium

    • you don't believe what you read in that broadsheet, do you?

      mind you, they may be right but i am yet to be convinced if that is the sole source of this info

    • i agree it was excellent analysis

      as to your guess, US policy in pakistan comes to mind and that tells me, if the US really wants the army to play a central role in "stabilising" anything, its privileges will be assured to quadruple in monetary terms

      whatever is the US interested in stabilising? the status quo that it stabilised for the last three decades is altered forever - a new status quo whith 'reforms'? what sort of reforms? do they have to pass obama/biden/clinton desks who din't think mubarak was a dictator but a valued ally until forced to do a doubletake?

      this is indeed inept diplomacy

  • DOJ Subpoenas Twitter Account of Wikileaks Volunteer and now Iceland MP
    • this in real life is corporate oligarchic muscle flexing that is progressing towards fascism through figureheads of elected representatives and since the corporate oligarchy has already assumed funding privileges for elections, it thinks it has created its cover except they thought that with hitler and mussolini too

      it is no 'Lord' who will help us because we are endowed with the ability to help ourselves if we so choose

    • utterly confused about the concept of 'technical' illegality - surely, something is either legal or illegal, full stop

      can we stop torturing language to introduce more and anodyne inanities, please? people lie, not misspeak; people get murdered through no fault of their own,it's collateral murder, not collateral damage; it is attempted drowning, not waterboarding even if a both a board and water are involved; it is not enhanced interrogation, it is torture prohibited under the geneva conventions; people get illegally kidnapped and transported against their will to be rendered to torturers, what is extraordinary about such renditions except for the ethical revulsion that the reality of it engenders?

      if you start illegalising what people can read, how many steps away from book burning are we? the hilarity or perhaps pathos of it is that once facts and ideas are already out there, you cannot put them back in the box

  • Wainwright: Taseer's Assassination Lays Bare Contradictions in Pakistani Islam
    • thank you for your response

      i accept that there is a perception of a crusade these days in the muslim world, however, to accept that perception carte blanche is hardly productive

      pakistan has not yet come to terms with the secession of east pakistan and the creation of bangladesh, preferring to use this event to strengthen its internal paranoia about india - there was no crusade talk then or even now regarding that event but there were 6m refugees, 2m+ deaths and many atrocities with rape featuring prominently that led up toit

      i never hear of the punjabi intransigence in letting the then east pakistanis (bengalis) to form the majority government that was their right since the elections returned more deputies from east pakistan than west pakistan which was in essence the genesis of that particular crisis

      then it was india, today it is christians and tomorrow it will be someone else but never pakistan itself

      to accept pakistan's misperceptions unquestioningly, however widely held, is not going to encourage a reform process

    • "Pakistan is a proud nation of colossal geo-strategic importance, and many perceive the state to be beholden to the wishes of an imperialistic and secularizing superpower. The presence of American special forces in Pakistan’s north-west only serves to confirm suspicions. Is it any wonder that conservatives invoke simplistic rhetoric about defending the prophet in the face of what they see as a crusade?"

      i take issue with this conclusion even though the rest of the article was informative - pakistan has perfected the art of making its living by exploiting its geostrategic importance ever since its inception and this has led to a national ethos of never taking responsibility for the consequences of its own actions

      this sense of irresponsibility extends across the state infrastructure, including both the civilian administration and the military, the ulema and its citizenry - the result is a low performing state

      a sense of crusade has nothing to do with it - that foreign presence in the north west frontier provinces would not have happened unless
      - obl and the kandahar taliban leadership had the freedom to hide there till the way to qetta was clear
      - the state apparatus, military and civilian, rejected all responsibility for an accessible education system that nurtured critical analytical skills but guess that saudi money for madrasas was way too tempting as an easy way out

      the ulema is not comprised of thoughtful scholars but mostly demagogues who hold sway over the disenfranchised masses who have islam as their opiate without the wherewithal to interpret the message of the quran that represents the spirit while the hadith is the letter

      given the chaos of pakistan, it has to be the judiciary that again needs to take the front line in asserting the essence of jurisprudence that needs to interpret the letter of laws in the spirit of the guiding principles under which they are/were framed - in any system, islamic or otherwise

      i still maintain that fighting a crusade is just another excuse to disavow responsibility

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