Shake, Rattle and Roll in Japan

Natural forces vs humans. Why build nuclear power plants near fault lines?

Related Links

When the tsunami hit – @julieposetti Location of that extraordinary #Japan #Tsunami video RT @gumb Kesennuma-shi, Miyagi-ken. Co-ords: 38.9089, 141.5698 #
Japan earthquake: Footage of moment tsunami hit
Before and after
Japan’s Nuclear Crisis: Lessons for the U.S.
All right, it’s time to stop the Fukushima hysteria. – this story was written before one incident turned to another
U.S. Detects Radiation 60 Miles From Stricken Plant
Hundreds flee in Japan after Shinmoedake volcano begins spewing ash, boulders

Kevvie, U and I

Howard the Desert RatThis is the week Kevvie’s fortunes will be decided. If he can’t swing the National Conference in favour of whacking the no new mines policy, the rodent will be in like Flynn with a walloping wedgie. While Garrett and Albanese continue to fight the good, if completely misguided, fight, Kevvie is confident.

Why aren’t these well-meaning twits discussing and extolling Synroc as a means of safe waste disposal? Whorestralia has a sublime opportunity to value add to U exports by insisting that waste be returned to sender for a non-negotiable fee, for processing and safe burial.

Perhaps Garrett and co would prefer we all choke – there’s no way solar and wind can fill the vast energy needs of China and India, particularly considering the number of reactors already under construction and those projected to come online in the next few years. And fat chance of stopping dirty brown coal exports with Beattie’s gungho attitude. Thirty years ago solar and wind might have been a realistic mass alternative, but that chance has long lapsed. Do Midnight Oil use biodiesel/solar/wind to power their amps? Noooooooo ….

With the water crisis worsening, the rodent gives us a preview of his next fear campaign – we’re all gonna starve, folks, if the rains don’t come. Git down on yer knees and pray, says the fat rat. Luckily, we have enough pumpkins and bananas to trade with our veggie growing friends – and since our shire has kept its trees, we still have plenty of rain. We were well aware many years ago the Australian environment was incapable of supporting its existing gobbling, guzzling, land-ravaging population in the long term. The long term has turned out to be the short term. Another year of drought and the country will really have to think hard about sustainable population. Death to economic rationalism and its sick worship of perpetual economic growth fuelled by taxpayer-funded breeding frenzies!

Of SubPrimes and Pigs in Shit

Howard WallowingWith the passing of the Ides of March, we have strong suspicions that the second market correction may be over – will there be a third? It is possible the subdued buying of resources – first copper, then zinc – by the Chinese in the past little while was deliberately orchestrated to engineer prices down to coincide with the beginning of the Year of the Gold Pig. Of relevance here may be the decision by the Whorestralian government last December to remove capital gains taxes for foreign investors and the more recent Chinese government decision not to impose capital gains tax on their investors. Metals prices rose strongly last night. Will the bull market resume or will the crazy crazy selloff of our precious resources continue unabated?

A Porky MonarchyWho wouldn’t like to have been a cashed up Chinese investor this year, rolling in US dollars, eager to drop them into cheap physical resources as the United Stupids economy sags under the weight of precarious hedge and subprime mortage funds and a tenuous bond market?

And where better to invest than in relatively insulated CGT free rich Australian resources at bargain basement prices – particularly uranium (Citic has been buying up more SAU this week), gold and zinc.

Kiss goodbye to your birthright treasures, fellow Whorestralians – and don’t expect to reap any of the proceeds of the fire sale in additional community services in this election year – Howard’s mudslingers need every cent to artificially deflate the trade deficit, to buy more crappy US jet fighters and electioneering pork. And as for you pathetic, whinging Whorestralian mortgagees, get ready to wear another interest rate rise you have to have, trust me, it’s for your own good,.

The Energo-Fascism of the Future

Here’s an excellent essay on what the very near future may look like in a world dominated by a dwindling supply of oil and a thirst for nuclear power.

Michael Klare examines “energy blackmail in a great-power world and the Big-Brother-style dangers of making nuclear power a major future alternative source of energy.”

An excerpt:

“Surprisingly, there are very few energy haves in the world today. Most notable among these privileged few are Australia, Canada, Iran, Kazakhstan, Kuwait, Nigeria, Qatar, Russia, Saudi Arabia, Venezuela, Iran, Iraq (if it were ever free of conflict), and a few others. These countries are in an envious position because they do not have to pay stratospheric prices for imported oil and natural gas and their ruling elites can demand all sorts of benefits — political, economic, diplomatic, and military — from the foreign leaders who come calling to procure copious quantities of their energy products. Indeed, they can engage in the delicious game of playing one foreign leader against another, as Kazakhstan’s President, Nursultan Nazarbayev

— a regular guest in Washington and Beijing — has become so adept at doing.

Pushed even further, this pursuit of favors can lead to a quest for political domination — with the sale of vital oil and natural gas supplies made contingent on the recipient’s acquiescing to certain political demands set forth by the seller. No country has embraced this strategy with greater vigor or enthusiasm than Vladimir Putin’s Russia.”