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humans have never had it better.  In what way?
Posted: 03 February 2014 11:56 AM   [ Ignore ]   [ # 16 ]
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Thank-you occam. I think that you may be correct.I have difficulty sorting that out sometimes. Are you stating that anything to do with humans is not natural phenomena or is it only not natural phenomenon when humans think or speak about it ?

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Posted: 04 February 2014 07:21 PM   [ Ignore ]   [ # 17 ]
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It may be a natural phenomenon, but humans assign values to things.  A tomato plant and a tomato worm eating it are natural phenomena.  When a person defines the plant a good and the worm as bad or ill, that’s a human value.

Occam

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Posted: 05 February 2014 05:40 PM   [ Ignore ]   [ # 18 ]
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I think I’ve mentioned it in another thread, but I’m currently making my way through “The Better Angels Of Our Nature: Why Violence Has Declined” by Stephen Pinker. The answer to the title of this thread is answered at least in part by him, in terms of reduction of violence worldwide. He hasn’t gone into much detail on the value of available energy to making people less violent; if memory serves, I think he found sources which made that hypothesis dubious. But, he does focus a lot on cultural change, game theory stuff, and psychology, amongst other things. It’s a big book.

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Posted: 06 February 2014 12:03 AM   [ Ignore ]   [ # 19 ]
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TromboneAndrew - 05 February 2014 05:40 PM

I think I’ve mentioned it in another thread, but I’m currently making my way through “The Better Angels Of Our Nature: Why Violence Has Declined” by Stephen Pinker. The answer to the title of this thread is answered at least in part by him, in terms of reduction of violence worldwide. He hasn’t gone into much detail on the value of available energy to making people less violent; if memory serves, I think he found sources which made that hypothesis dubious. But, he does focus a lot on cultural change, game theory stuff, and psychology, amongst other things. It’s a big book.

Somehow when viewing the news of the world around us, in particular the middle east, but also south/central america, africa, asia well heck all sorts of places, seems that violence is plenty rampant.  Worse the breakdown in civility within government and towards government.  Sure we have it good in this country… so far…

Still,
What with that “war on terror” and all it’s cascading consequence, seems there’s more back sliding then ever.

And that isn’t even mentioning the environmental damages and their impacts on people’s quality of life, health.

Chemical/Petroleum spills everywhere and the people in charge couldn’t give a damn… while the masses suffer.

Oh and not to mention the legacy of rotting, ill maintained infrastructure… including atomic, chemical, petroleum…

Oh dear, sorry it goes on and on - and at every turn more self destructive choices are made. 
And the more vicious the power structure is getting.
Just consider the madness that has gripped the Canadian government.

http://whatsupwiththatwatts.blogspot.com/2014/01/canadas-harpers-war-on-science.html
Oh and that’s just scratching the surface of part of it in Canada.

… NPR news this evening really got me on roll…  I’ll shut up and go to my room now.  red face

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Posted: 27 February 2014 06:23 PM   [ Ignore ]   [ # 20 ]
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There are many reasons why now is the very best time for humans.
Aren’t you glad you don’t have to worry about being strung up to a cross and left to die?
http://www.psychologytoday.com/blog/sex-murder-and-the-meaning-life/201204/is-the-world-becoming-nicer-place-live

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Posted: 01 March 2014 09:44 AM   [ Ignore ]   [ # 21 ]
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More happy that we have gained a considerable amount of control over disease.  Have established an agricultural system that prevents famine from being a regular problem for most of us, etc.

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Gary the Human

All the Gods and all religions are created by humans, to meet human needs and accomplish human ends.

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Posted: 03 March 2014 12:15 PM   [ Ignore ]   [ # 22 ]
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doubturopath - 27 February 2014 06:23 PM

There are many reasons why now is the very best time for humans.
Aren’t you glad you don’t have to worry about being strung up to a cross and left to die?
http://www.psychologytoday.com/blog/sex-murder-and-the-meaning-life/201204/is-the-world-becoming-nicer-place-live

Yea, interesting study.

I got a feeling there’s a bit of fancy math going on their - keep in mind “per capita” as opposed to “actual numbers”

http://www.worldometers.info/world-population/

7 Billion (2011)
According to the United Nations, world population reached 7 Billion on October 31, 2011.
The US Census Bureau made a lower estimate, for which the 7 billion mark was only reached on March 12, 2012.

6 Billion (1999)
According to the United Nations, the 6 billion figure was reached on October 12, 1999 (celebrated as the Day of 6 Billion). According to the U.S. Census Bureau instead, the six billion milestone was reached on July 22, 1999, at about 3:49 AM GMT. Yet, according to the U.S. Census web site, the date and time of when 6 billion was reached will probably change because the already uncertain estimates are constantly being updated.

Previous Milestones
5 Billion: 1987
4 Billion: 1974
3 Billion: 1960
2 Billion: 1927
1 Billion: 1804

Although on that same page you’ll find that the growth rate has actually been dropping since the mid-sixties and in fact seems poised to enter a negative growth rate pretty soon - indicating that all is not as peachy wonderful as some would like us to believe.

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Posted: 03 March 2014 12:32 PM   [ Ignore ]   [ # 23 ]
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garythehuman - 01 March 2014 09:44 AM

More happy that we have gained a considerable amount of control over disease.  Have established an agricultural system that prevents famine from being a regular problem for most of us, etc.

I don’t deny any of that, it was the best of times, it was the worst of times, depending on what side of border you’re born on, well the right color helps an awful lot too.

This weekend by virtue of a very smart, well placed, sister, I got a glimpse of some of the latest cancer therapies and it is truly astounding beyond comprehension what’s been discovered and developed over the past decades and particularly this past one.  I’ll share some of that in a later thread.
But, I’m not sure how all that compensates for all the varied back-sliding your right-wing types remain blind to.

Agriculture in particular is a frightening example.  Looking back, advances have been amazing, too amazing in fact, to be sustainable.  Now given what we have done to our weather systems (been paying any attention the past decades weather, this is just the beginning rumbles of the show we, collectively, have created for ourselves.

Study finds growing evidence of global warming threat to future food supplies
Jan 15, 2013
http://phys.org/news/2013-01-evidence-global-threat-future-food.html

It remains to be seen how California agriculture will weather this next growing season.  But, will we learn anything from it?
================================================================

This guy seems to sum it up fairly well:

FRED KIRSCHENMANN SPEAKS ON THE 4 MAJOR THREATS TO INDUSTRIALIZED AGRICULTURE: ENERGY CONSTRAINTS, WATER, CLIMATE CHANGE, AND ECOLOGICAL DEGRADATION

http://www.bigpictureagriculture.com/2010/09/fred-kirschenmann-speaks-on-4-major.html

[ Edited: 03 March 2014 01:09 PM by citizenschallenge.pm ]
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