China's trap. It needs to grow at a torrid rate in order for the government to stay in power. Slow it and the entire edifice will crash. Keep it up and that same growth will create a health/environmental disaster of historical proportions:
Experts once thought China might overtake the United States as the world’s leading producer of greenhouse gases by 2010, possibly later. Now, the International Energy Agency has said China could become the emissions leader by the end of this year, and the Netherlands Environment Assessment Agency said China had already passed that level. For the Communist Party, the political calculus is daunting. Reining in economic growth to alleviate pollution may seem logical, but the country’s authoritarian system is addicted to fast growth. Delivering prosperity placates the public, provides spoils for well-connected officials and forestalls demands for political change. A major slowdown could incite social unrest, alienate business interests and threaten the party’s rule.
You have to love this (which indicates that to keep the growth going, China is pouring as much energy into the system as possible, without restraint):
Last year, China burned the energy equivalent of 2.7 billion tons of coal, three-quarters of what the experts had said would be the maximum required in 2020. To put it another way, China now seems likely to need as much energy in 2010 as it thought it would need in 2020 under the most pessimistic assumptions.
Cape Wind (from the Climate Change Business Journal):
A recent survey conducted by Opinion Research Corp. indicates that the residents of Massachusetts support the controversial Cape Wind project by a margin of approximately four to one. The survey of 600 Massachusetts households, conducted from July 25 through August 2, also showed that three of every five residents of Cape Cod and the islands of Martha’s Vineyard and Nantucket also support the project, which involves the proposed construction of 130 wind turbines in Nantucket Sound. The Cape Wind project has faced stiff opposition by Cape Cod residents and some powerful figures, including U.S. Senator Ted Kennedy (D.-Mass.), whose family owns a compound in the Cape Cod town of Hyannisport, and Republican presidential candidate and former Massachusetts Governor Mitt Romney.
IS: Documents obtained by IraqSlogger show Iraqi Prime Minister Maliki's chief Iraqi opponent, Ayad Allawi, is paying Washington lobbyists with close ties to the White House $300,000 to help with Allawi's efforts in the U.S. to promote himself and undermine Maliki.
Officials I talk to in Washington vote for a hit on the IRGC, maybe within the next six months. And they think that as long as we have bombers and missiles in the air, we will hit Iran's nuclear facilities. An awe and shock campaign, lite, if you will... An Administration official told me... "IRGC IED's are a casus belli for this Administration. There will be an attack on Iran."
I still think (and this is truly just my gut talking), that this is a very strong possibility. Yeeee-haaaaaa!
Took a break to think about a new brief I am writing. During the break, I spent some time with my son trying to get the new game, Bioshock, to work correctly on his PC. Found out that the game designer had a hidden specification: the need for a 3.0 pixel shader (only found that out through research). So the game won't run on a relatively new machine with a popular graphics card, even though that machine can meet or exceed all of the listed system requirements. Bad decision guys. On top of that, it uses some intrusive Sony DRM (that resists being uninstalled). Another bad decision guys. Time to pack the software back up and send back to Amazon. A needless waste of a couple of hours.
We watched Tom Tykwer's (Run Lola Run) Perfume last night. I thought the movie was absolutely amazing. I loved it. The storytelling was superb, with a force and bravery you don't see too often (it was also an amazing feat that he was able to make me think that I could "see" smells).
Of course, it had a very unusual plot. As a result, your results might swing wildly -- everyone else that watched it with me denounced it as either weird or horrible.