Monday, June 29, 2009

The Gift Of Time

Leaving one's job can be distressing to put it mildly.  Many are living through that stress these days.  However there is another side to that coin: Free Time, time free from the requirement of going to an office and focusing on narrow concerns of your employer. Free time is the opportunity to surf the internet unbound and research the answers to one's curiosity.  Since leaving my last position I have gorged on that opportunity.  Information is freely available, but that most of the time hidden behind too few hours in the day, too much focus on business decisions to be made.

My father, in retirement, with the luxury of plentiful time, became my information digest of all that fit "must read".  Since he died last August I missed his "must read" warnings.  So, starved and eager I've been catching up.  In case I can save you some time or share some of the doors I opened for myself, here is the list with brief comments.  Of course it is all stained by my particular interests and viewpoints.  As my forced freedom permits I will continue this effort. If you want to know when I dig out something new subscribe (RSS or email - top right).
Your comments will be greatly appreciated and your sharing your own "must read" findings even more so.

Global WarmingThe landscape seems to be changing.  As mass hysteria increased and penetrated our political process, dissenting views of scientists seem to get a little more attention in the media. Skeptics have become slightly more vocal. The populace has lost some interest after the high mark of the months leading to the Presidential Election. The fear of the staggering cost of taking action is finally translating into "are we sure enough of this before we spend trillions on it?" or "if India and China's negative impact accounts for 5 times the best that could ever be expected if all participants implemented Kyoto 100%, what difference could Kyoto make? Do we not need a better plan?" (see Fareed Zakaria below).

Must Read/WatchClimate changes are not global warming - Interview with John Coleman, weather scientist and founder of The Weather Channel
Testing The Hypothesis of Global Warming - 5 Tests of CO2 - Prof. Bob Carters at Conference on Climate Change N.Y. 2008
Sen. Inhofe on Al Gore
Charlie Rose and Michael Crichton on Global Warming (skip 22 min. to GW)
20/20 John Stossel: The myth of consensus
20/20 John Stossel: The media and global warming
20/20 John Stossel: Don't fight it, adjust to it
The real greenhouse gas
Why use scare tactics and doctored data if the argument holds?
The debate is not over, Al Gore
Those so convincing photos...
The naked truth of An Inconvenient Truth

Geopolitics and Economics
The world is changing and we hardly notice because nationally we are trained by mass media to be concerned only about the US. Our markets are large enough so too many companies think exporting is too much trouble. We are the last industrialized country not on the metric system (along with Myanmar). We are pleased that the whole world is learning English, so we do not learn their languages and our educational system makes sure that some do not master English even here and live speaking a pidgin English in the name of diversity.

Then you run into an interview by Charlie Rose with Fareed Zakaria and in one hour you learn a lot, really a lot. If you read The Economist or The Atlantic regularly you'd learn even more, but few even seem to know they exist.

Is "Peak Oil" not at peak?
Then what about ethanol?

Old Standby Brain food
2008 Did You Know 3.0  the stats keep changing...
2007 Did You Know 2.0
2006 Did You Know

TED Conference  if you are curious, this is heaven
       Jill Bolte Taylor - inside view of her stroke
       Eva Vertes a most brilliant mind

Now be nice, leave some of your favorites "must read".  If they do not agree with mine, so be it, I'll learn from you.  Thank you.