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hunter's Journal
hunter's Journal
November 14, 2023

Knowing how to fall without breaking your neck is an important life skill.

More important, actually, than not falling.

November 2, 2023

We should just stick with the names Adam and maybe later his "helper" Eve gave them...

... as later inventoried by Noah and his family on the Ark.

And Adam gave names to all cattle, and to the fowl of the air, and to every beast of the field; but for Adam there was not found an help meet for him. Genesis 2:20

My personal take is that the author of that was possibly being sarcastic too. Name all the animals? Are you fucking kidding me?

Naming all the animals really wasn't a possibility before Carl Linnaeus applied eighteenth century accounting technology to the task.

Personally, I'd like to know what names people who lived here in the Americas gave these birds before the European invasion. I'm certain these birds had Native American names. Naming is what humans do.
May 16, 2023

I used to be an anti-nuclear activist, and a radical one at that.

When I first started posting on DU I was a little less radical, but still on the anti-nuclear side of the fence.

I thought renewable energy could save the world.

Alas that experiment has been done and the numbers are in. It's clear that aggressive renewable energy schemes in places like California, Denmark, and Germany have failed. They're not economically viable without substantial fossil fuel inputs, especially natural gas. No amount of hand waving about batteries, hydrogen, pumped hydro, or any other energy storage scheme changes that. It has to do with thermodynamics. Human laws and creative accounting can't change that.

California, for example, already has many gigawatts of solar panels, wind turbines, and energy storage schemes. You can subtract fossil fuels out of California's energy mix and model any sort of renewable energy utopia you like. None of them look good, none of them scaled up can support eight billion people.

If we don't quit fossil fuels now billions of humans are going to suffer and die because of global warming.

It's not much better if we switch to fully "renewable" energy sources. Billions of people would suffer and die, mostly for lack of food, clean water, and adequate shelter.

We've worked ourselves into a corner. Eight billion humans are dependent on high density energy sources for food, shelter... our very survival. Most of that energy now comes from fossil fuels.

The only energy resource capable of displacing fossil fuels entirely, which we must do, is nuclear power.

Claiming that renewable energy will save the world is just another flavor of climate change denial.

Many of the arguments I hear from renewable energy enthusiasts remind me of the arguments I hear from Creationists. These arguments somehow make sense to the creationist, but they make no sense to anyone living outside their bubble.

If humans descended from monkeys, why are there still monkeys?

For many of the anti-nuclear activists I used to work with, some of them I'm still in occasional contact with, their activism was essentially a religious belief. Atomic bombs and atomic power were the apple in the garden of Eden that Satan was tempting mankind with.

It might not be coincidence that I first met Helen Caldicott when I was an impressionable (and slightly psychotic teen) in the community room of a Lutheran church. That's how I fell in with an anti-nuclear crowd. They could use a university library researcher and dumpster diver. I loved university libraries and dumpsters.

Like any otherwise sane human I abhor nuclear weapons. I remember as a kid the cold war nuclear drills, diving under our desks when the alarm went off with our butts facing the windows, ready to kiss our asses good-bye. I'm glad my children only knew the fire and earthquake drills. The earthquake drills were similar to the cold war drills, but you got to leave the classroom when the shaking stopped. When I was teaching we had a big earthquake, and we spent most of the rest of the day out on the playground until the buildings had been inspected for serious damage. That wouldn't have been the case if the USSR had dropped a bomb on us. My students and my children didn't worry about "The Bomb" as I had as a kid. There is some sanity in the world, all these years since Fat Man.

As I've said, I've changed my mind about nuclear power. In a world where toxic wastes of every kind imaginable, most with a half life of fucking FOREVER, I'm not going to worry about a little plutonium unaccounted for amidst the horrific death toll of a tsunami. I'm absolutely certain worse shit was spilled in the tsunami, carcinogens and mutagens of all sorts, but it was the kind of familiar shit we ignore in our daily lives.
January 12, 2023

"Those places" are selling something they don't have.

That, and their abusive practices is what makes them criminal.

So long as our society, in general, believes that punishment is an effective form of behavioral modification we are fucked. It isn't.

The way to deal with teenagers who believe they know everything and can support themselves is to provide them with reasonably safe opportunities to prove it.

Our society should provide opportunities like that for children whose parents can't manage it.

As a parent once you've gotten yourself into a power struggle with your teen you've lost. If you feel you have to hire someone to kidnap your teen in the middle of the night, you've lost big.

Two of my siblings ran away from home at sixteen with highly dramatic exits, which is a family tradition, going back centuries as I discern. Fuck you mom and dad, what do you know? All four of my grandparents were like that. But channels of communication always remained open.

Myself, I put my parents through a worse hell, no channels of communication open, leaving them to assume I was taking care of myself which wasn't true in any way. I was learning how to be a feral human dumpster diving for food some days. But I'd long trained my parents, since I was first a psychotic teenager, not to ask whenever I showed up on their doorstep battered and bloody.

What made all the difference was they accepted me, simple food and shelter at first, especially when I wasn't talking.

When I was 12 years old I knew fucking everything, all the secrets of humanity and the universe. With puberty my mind went completely sideways and I didn't gather most of it back together until I was 25 at least.

I think all we humans are the same to some greater of lesser extent.

October 2, 2022

This town burns coal when the wind isn't blowing, just like everyone else in Germany.

Or worse. Sometimes they burn food.

Building on the wind farm's success, the farming cooperative has diversified its business. In the face of falling crop prices and rising energy costs, they decided to build a biogas plant. That facility now turns maize and cereal silage - plus a mixture of pig and cow manure - into methane, which in turn heats and powers Feldheim's homes.


Feldheim's non-reliance on fossil fuels is largely an accounting trick. The energy their wind turbines put into the grid is considered equivalent to that they take out of it, which is not the case. Projects like this may reduce fossil fuel use to some extent but not enough to save the world.

But that's not why I call out these sorts of hopium.

( Hopium -- the metaphorical substance that causes people to believe in a false hope. )

For all such projects I ask what's the environmental footprint per person? What's the capital cost per person? Than I multiply that by 8 billion.

People who are wealthy generally have huge environmental footprints. Some of them feel guilty about it and do all sorts of strange things, often with government subsidy, to assuage their guilty feelings, while failing to reduce their environmental footprint in any significant way.

The answer to our environmental crisis can't be found in buying more stuff, especially if it's stuff made with copper, lithium, and rare earth magnets.

Sadly, the earth can't support a Tesla car, a PowerWall, Wind Turbines, and Solar Panels for every human. There's too many of us.

The answer isn't electric cars, the answer is fewer cars overall. Etc..

It's clear that the political and economic empowerment of women and rising standards of living reduce birth rates. How do we accomplish that?

A reliable electric supply and a safe water supply with indoor plumbing are a large part of that equation. These systems can be made from abundant materials -- steel, aluminum, concrete, and plastic -- materials abundant enough to raise living standards everywhere, for every human on earth.

Solar and wind power are not going to magically replace fossil fuels. The only way to quit fossil fuels is to quit fossil fuels. Feldheim hasn't done that and never will.

Germany sought to replace its coal and nuclear power plants with a hybrid gas-wind-solar system. They failed.

The fossil fuel industry knows that solar and wind power will only prolong our dependence on fossil fuels, especially natural gas. In the long run solar and wind power will do nothing to reduce the overall amount of greenhouse gasses dumped into the atmosphere.

These articles are greenwash, which is why you see articles like this everywhere, even in publications that enthusiastically promote fossil fuel industry propaganda.
July 31, 2022

Imagine a politician running on a political platform of "NO NEW CARS..."

...and rebuilding our cities so that most people don't need them.

That wouldn't fly, not even here on DU.

What would all those auto workers do?

How many people here would like to see the population density of their suburban neighborhoods doubled or tripled? Streets closed, parking lots in-filled with attractive energy-efficient high-density apartments and condos, public transportation expanded, etc.?

What we learned from Chernobyl is that humans going about their ordinary business are worse for the natural environment than the very worst sort of nuclear accident. So we have to change our ordinary business. What we now call economic "productivity" is, in fact, a direct measure of the damage we are doing to the earth's natural environments and our own human spirit.

Unfortunately there are now about 8 billion of us. So-called "renewable" energy can't support our population. We've become dependent on high density energy resources, mostly fossil fuels, for our food, water, and shelter. And it's not the poor people who are most dependent on fossil fuels, it's the affluent people.

We've worked ourselves into a terrible corner. Without these high density energy resources half of us wouldn't survive. If we don't quit fossil fuels soon global warming is going to kill even more of us.

I used to be a "live within our means" anti-nuclear activist, and a fairly radical one at that. I'm not any more. Aggressive renewable energy schemes in places like California, Denmark, and Germany have failed. The experiment has been done. These schemes will only prolong our dependence on fossil fuels, especially natural gas.

There's enough natural gas in the ground to destroy whatever is left of the natural environment as we know it. It's best we leave that gas in the ground, even that which supports our renewable energy fantasies.

I figure the U.S.A. could quit fossil fuels in fifteen years if we decided to do it with the same intensity we fought World War II. We have the resources and the technologies, including nuclear power, to do that.

First we have to recognize the problem.

Just before the U.S.A. entered World War II there were still many U.S. Americans who thought Hitler had some good ideas and Japan was too far away to worry about. That's where we are now.

I don't know what the wake-up call is going to be, but it's going to be horrible.

June 4, 2022

Gun fetishes are disgusting.

That's where I aim my wrath.

I've got absolutely nothing against the utilitarian uses of guns.

Hunting for food isn't any less ethical than buying meat at the grocery store so long as it's carefully regulated.

Trophy hunters are disgusting.

Wannabe warriors are disgusting.

I don't think most of our police have the skills or the temperament to use guns appropriately. I've seen them shoot people who weren't shooting back, and people who didn't even have guns.

Most gun fetishists vastly overestimate the value of guns for self defense. One of my great grandmas, who was a suburb hunter and outdoors person all around, would say things like, "If I wanted you dead I'd poison your coffee." She had ZERO tolerance for fools with guns, especially the incompetent city yokels who invaded her territory every hunting season with their ridiculously expensive gear seeking to prove their manliness. And this was before the modern idiocy of military style rifles and the like.

Gun fetishists need to crawl back to their closets. Most U.S.A. citizens don't care enough about guns to bother owning one, and support much stricter regulation of guns. It's a crime that violent and ignorant people, their brains damaged by lead and insecticides and television, enjoy more political representation than saner folk.

Oh, and the second amendment is bullshit. It's not like our Constitution wasn't full of bullshit when it was written, things like the 3/5 person compromise, that were meant to appease horrible white men who kept others as property -- as slaves, wage slaves, even their own wives and children.

I'm not going to stop mocking gun fetishists, nor will I compromise with them. They are wrong, just like racism is wrong, hatred of LGBTQ people is wrong, etc..

May 27, 2022

Most people in the U.S.A. can't be bothered to own a gun.

A certain number of people like hunters and ranchers use guns for utilitarian purposes. These kinds of guns last forever, since they are usually kept locked away unused.

That leave's "gun culture" as the only market for new guns -- people who already own multiple guns. A lot of the people who participate in that culture probably shouldn't own any guns and might not be given permits in places like Switzerland.

This huge market, driven entirely by gun culture, also makes it easy for mass murderers and violent criminals to obtain these weapons.

May 25, 2022

I thought this would be a thread mocking the UFO hearings so I didn't click on it. Too easy.

Most UFO theories tend to be lacking in imagination. Any beings able to travel between the stars, or even from the outer reaches of our own solar system, are not going to be zipping about in the equivalent of the Jetson family car.


I've personally had some "Close Encounters of the Third Kind," half of them I attribute to my own mental illness, which sometimes includes hallucinations mostly auditory but sometimes visual, especially when I'm not sleeping enough.

Sometimes I've seen stuff that is later explained. I once happened upon a very early pre-dawn test flight of a stealth fighter back when I was prone to running long distances and minor trespasses.

That first encounter registered in my head as another UFO until the aircraft was publicized. I had a few drone aircraft register as UFOs as well. Military things like this, before they were commonplace:


These things look like they are zipping around at incredible speeds if you misjudge the distance. When I saw them they were probably looking at me.

Meh, that's just Hunter. He's crazy and mostly harmless.

The true interstellar visitors don't need spaceships. They already permeate everything, shifting their awareness around according to their incomprehensible whims.

On the macro-scales of the three dimensional universe we live in, faster-than-light travel is simply impossible.

That's a good thing.

There are many other species out there just like us. They don't play well with others.

The speed of light and all the ways to die in space keep us very well quarantined.

May 23, 2022

There are plenty of disused cities throughout the U.S.A.

Maybe we could train an army of specialists to refurbish and modernize these cities with high speed internet, excellent public transportation, and carbon-free power sources.

Then we could offer them up for homestead, with free water and utilities for a year, no rent or mortgage for two, first dibs to the people actually doing the reconstruction.

Those who don't make the transition to self-sufficiency in two to five years would be offered more conventional publicly subsidized housing and other opportunities.

All the resources required to do this, money and manpower, could be diverted from our overheated military budget.

I don't think it would take a great fraction of those resources to nearly eliminate homelessness and wage slavery in the U.S.A., and it would also create a more welcoming environment for immigrants and refugees whom we need to prevent demographic senescence.

That probably sounds too much like communism to some people. It's actually an investment in our future.

Libertarians like to believe such progress can be accomplished by the "invisible hand of the free market," but it's not happening. Gentrification is not the same thing. For every "winner" in the gentrification game there are more losers -- mostly lower income people who are driven away by high rents and evictions.

Profile Information

Name: Hunter
Gender: Male
Current location: California
Member since: 2002
Number of posts: 38,309

About hunter

I'm a very dangerous fellow when I don't know what I'm doing.
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