Simon Leufstedt

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Posts posted by Simon Leufstedt

  1. There's a huge "Twitterstorm" going on today where people are calling on politicians and delegates at the Rio+20 conference to end fossil fuel subsidies. You can follow all the tweets using the #EndFossilFuelSubsidies hashtag.

    Governments around the world are spending $1.4 billion per day to keep us all hooked on climate wrecking fossil fuels. Just imagine what we could do with those money instead. There are many ways to stop catastrophic climate change. One of the easiest ways is simply to end these subsidies.

    So what if if solar power got the same subsidies as fossil fuels?

  2. I feel that the population problem has been going on for such a long time and no one has addressed this because they feel that having children is our right as humans. I don't agree. I really feel that parents should have to take a test before they are allowed to have children. Why is it that I have to jump through hoops to drive a car, but I don't to have another human being. It's insane. Did anyone see that viral video about the young parents who put their kid in a washing machine? My point exactly.

    I am pretty sure it wasn't his parents who did that. But anyways, while I don't really agree with you I do understand your reasoning.

  3. 20 steps outside my front door is a clam fossil in a rock from one of the most common formations from this part of the country. The White River sandstone. Now what do you suppose that could tell me? That where my house is used to be the floor of an ocean. That indicates huge change. The only constant in this system is change.

    Yes, the climate has changed before. But that doesn't disprove man-made climate change or make it any less dangerous. I will just quote SkepticalScience because explaining all this is getting quite tiresome: Climate reacts to whatever forces it to change at the time; humans are now the dominant forcing. Natural climate change in the past proves that climate is sensitive to an energy imbalance. If the planet accumulates heat, global temperatures will go up. Currently, CO2 is imposing an energy imbalance due to the enhanced greenhouse effect. Past climate change actually provides evidence for our climate's sensitivity to CO2.

  4. This is a great post but we cannot kill this planet. Mother Earth is alive and well and adapting rapidly and all the time to the strain we are placing on her. One day she will tire of us...and it is us who will die, not her.

    Sure, the planet will still be here even if the human race goes extinct. But the problem is, it's not just us humans who will suffer from our actions. We're slashing down the remaining forests, poisoning the oceans and changing the climate. We're already responsible for eradicating animals and species at a higher rate than at any time since the mass extinctions +65 million years ago. So the path to our downfall is, and will be, lined with the death of ecosystems and thousands of other species.

    Okay, you want to stop overconsuming then you should probably recycle the tablet, desktop, or labtop you are using. Do you have any idea the economical, ecological, and social damage you have done by purchasing them?

    I don't really understand this argument. It feels just as far-fetched as when people complain about Greenpeace using boats or helicopters to stop and protest over-fishing and whatnot.

    And I don't really buy this focus on individual responsibility either. Personally, I think individual actions are important, of course. But we will never solve the climate crisis on individual actions alone. For that we need major and far-reaching collective actions, i.e. laws, regulations, subsidies, taxes etc.

    By focusing on individuals you lose the bigger picture and the real cause of the problem, which is a system based on the ruthless pursuit of profit. We cannot protect the environment while there is no plan of production. The companies who rule the global economy areonly interested in maximising profits. Most of the oil spill disasters are caused by the petroleum companies cutting costs on safety etc.

    Yes, I agree. You often hear from writers, thinkers, politicians and activists that consumers has a lot of power to change and therefore they have a huge responsibility towards climate change. To a certain degree individuals can be held responsible for the climate crisis. Especially when people fail to put pressure on political leaders etc. And sure, often you as a consumer have a choice between organic and/or fair-trade products versus conventional products. But not everyone of us have this option for various reasons.

    But consumers can't really be counted nor can they be held responsible for the ecological collapse and climate crisis. Especially not when we have a market that is manipulated and dominated by huge corporations (many whom are larger and hold more power than single nation states) that constantly use their influence and power to change consumer's minds and behaviors. And consumers aren't equal, we all have different power and influence depending on how much money we have. And we don't really have a choice in the market when most products and services are mainly offered and controlled by a few huge corporations. And finally, consumers don't control or own the means to production,

    So basically, what I am trying to say is: individual responsibility is important but it can only take us so far. Corporations and governments are the ones who can truly create change. And thus they also have the main responsibility. Environmental policy professor Thomas Princen said it well:

    "In the end the idea of consumer sovereignty doesn’t add up. It is a myth convenient for those who would locate responsibility for social and environmental problems on the backs of consumers, absolving those who truly have market power and who write the rules of the game and who benefit the most."

  5. Okay and where do the animals go? The problem with this is that there are many animals that have never been outside of captivity and so would be dead in no time if released. Furthermore I would rather have some animals on exhibit and alive then have no animals prancing around in the none existent wild. I mean even the last bastions of wilderness are being invaded thanks to Google Earth, Hollywood, and Big Business.

    Animals can be released back into the wild again. There are countless of reintroduction programs that does just this. Of course I understand that some animals might not be able to be released. But that doesn't mean we should continue to lock them inside.

    Also what does Google Earth and Hollywood have to do with this? :unsure:

    I have attended zoos and the circus as a child, but I don't think I will now as an adult. I only agree to it if these animals can't be naturalized back into the wild, but the circus and for profit places like sea world are just bad news to me.

    I find circuses that travel around with animals just as, or even more, despicable than zoos. Luckily more and more circuses, over here at least, are moving away from shows that involve animals and instead chooses to focus on clowns and other forms of performance.

  6. they are already suffering from the organic movement (no pesticides mean more malaria)

    Huh, what!? :wacko:

    The main problem is not the size of the population, but how resources and production is managed under the current economic system.

    I agree. We don't have a population problem. But we do have a consumption problem.

  7. The only threat I can see is that the anger against the austerity measures and the failing conservative and neoliberal policies will make people turn towards the extreme right and their hateful ideology. In Greece the far-right made huge gains in the recent election. And these were not your ordinary islamophobic racists in suits and combed hair. No these were actual nazis! But hopefully solidarity and knowledge will win over hate and ignorance.

  8. I totally agree with you. The 'We are the 99%' slogan worked, it fitted with the current level of consciousness of the movement. The campaign for a mass party of labour, based on the unions, will continue to grow in the coming period. The American workers want and need an alternative to the two parties of big business and imperialism.

    The only question is when will people dare to take the first steps towards breaking the damaging two-party system that, to be honest, has a massive, almost unbreakable, foundation in America. Most people who would form and support a true and new labour party in the US are located on the left, and those people vote democrat today. So if a new party is to be formed the Democratic party must first die, or at least lose a lot of its current support. And no matter how conflicted and crazy the right-wingers are they are good at one thing: sticking together for a common goal. That would mean that during this transition the Republicans would most likely gain more power. And I guess this is what holding most people off, otherwise the Greens in the US would already be a major player in the national politics.

    But then again everything is possible. And I don't think that its just people on the left that wants to break away from the two-party system. The internal fighting within the Republican party between the more traditional republicans, the neocons, and the religious fringe could easily escalate. I could easily imagine that the Tea Party movement, for example, could spring lose from the Republicans and form their own party.

    People should stop to assume or even hope that the Democrats will ever take ordinary people's wishes and needs in consideration. The democratic party is just a lesser evil than the Republicans. At the moment the political system in the US boils down to a choice between the plague or cholera.

    It will probably be a painful transition, but it's a transition that is very much needed.

  9. That's a great video. Good job!

    Alternative transportation options are much healthier, less stressful, cheaper, and in most cases will take you much faster to your destination than a car would.

    By the way, at around the 3:03 mark in the video I thought the girl on the bike would fall and hurt herself. But she managed that situation like a pro. ;)

  10. I really dislike zoos. The animals should be able to wander around freely in their natural habitat instead of being locked inside a small confined area while being stressed from all the zoo visitors. Before they could have played an important educational role for people. But today they just feel so outdated. We don't need zoos anymore to educate people and children about animals. A nature documentary/film/photo works just as good today imo.

  11. The other day I purchased a new keyboard for my computer. This new keyboard is a wireless solar powered keyboard (K750) from Logitech. It doesn't run on batteries, instead the keyboard has two solar panels on the top of it. Despite this, or maybe because of this, it's still very light and sleek. I haven't packed it up yet but I will sure to let you all know how it works and performs.

    Hakan likes this

  12. I'm a college student, so I walk most of the time. The stores aren't very far from my dorm. When I move out, I want to live in Chicago, and I don't want to own a car. I want to be able to walk to a lot of places, and I will be able to in a big city like Chicago. I also would take the bus/subway/train and maybe the taxi on occasion, but I really don't want to own a car.

    I understand what you mean about not wanting to own a car. To maintain a car today is just too expensive and involves too much hassle. Just getting a driver's license requires a small fortune! So if you're lucky to live in a bigger city with decent public transportation options I don't really see a point in owning a car.

  13. I love watching documentaries! Did you see that one by Al Gore? I have seen a few more that were just slightly informative. Most of the ones at my local video store just seem like they use scare tactics. I hate it when a documentary tries to scare people. I'd rather inform people than shock or scare.

    I am not sure how you would get people to change their behavior if they/we didn't scare them. Climate change is scary and people should realize the real dangers of not doing anything.

  14. Just a small observation. In this thread alone global warming is said to be responsible for flooding and drought. Both extremes of precipitation. How is this possible?

    Ah yes. From the term 'global warming' one could think that the only effect we would see will be a warmer climate. But different regions around the world will see different effects. Global warming will not mean that we will get a nicer climate up here in northern Scandinavia. Global warming means a changing climate and more extreme weather. That's why the term 'climate change' is better. Regions that already see much rain will generally receive a wetter climate and dry regions will see an even hotter climate as global warming progresses. For example, Bangladesh is expected to see more rainfall as well as rising sea levels. Southern Europe that is already pretty warm will see increased temperatures and deadly heatwaves. We might even see more snow in some regions!

  15. In my experience it all depends on the innate civility, or otherwise, of the people involved. I have seen gangs form on fora and unless you have been on the receiving end you probably wouldn't even notice it. Human nature is very cunning.

    Yes I agree with you on that. And that's one of the reasons why I am only allowing upvotes, or likes, at the moment. This community is still so new and small that we shouldn't make anyone leave because of some potential downvoting/bad reputation. Because of the small size the real troublemakers can be taken care of more swiftly and effectively by moderators.

    EDIT : Fora need to be moderated and that is a personal matter. But for real D-Heads you could have a report feature that immediately takes the offending post offline, with justification by the reporter and last say to the mod.

    It is already possible to report specific posts. It won't remove the post in question at once, but it will notify a moderator that will take action if the post is deemed to break any of the community rules.

    The positive thing with a downvote button is that it could be used against potential climate change deniers that spread lies and misinformation on the forum. But at the moment I haven't seen anything like that around here.

    And the Like-button can help stop unnecessary posts. If person A writes an interesting post that person B enjoys and agree with, it would be much better if person B just clicked the like-button instead of making a short "I agree!!!" post.

  16. Yeah but it's the durable and unbreakable features that make them so sinister. If not recycled it'll take thousands of years for those plastic containers to break down naturally in the environment or in a landfill. Plastic bags alone, can take between 15 and 1000 years to break down in the environment. And in the meantime they will pose a serious and deadly risk for wildlife.

  17. In elections last year the conservatives in Denmark lost their slim majority to a coalition of social democrats, greens and liberals. And more recently conservative president Nicolas Sarkozy lost his job to François Hollande from the French Socialist Party.

    And it doesn't look good for other conservative parties around Europe. Prime Minister, David Cameron, leader of the Conservative Party, and his a coalition with the Liberal Democrats is losing support among voters in the UK. Also falling heavily in the polls is the right-wing coalition that currently governs Sweden. It is also looking rather bleak for German Chancellor Angela Merkel and her Christian Democratic Union party. And then we have Greece that is moving closer and closer towards a new election; an election in which Syriza, the "hard left", is expected to gain the most from.

    Soon the political landscape in Europe might look completely different from what it does today. These surely are exciting times!