Gas at $1.50 / litre

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I say bring it on.

So far as I can tell it won't get better before it gets worse. The only reason people think of cars like the Tata nano (new car in India, 2 cyclinars, 4 seats >20km/l) as a "death trap" is because they don't feel comfortable with all the mega suv's around. Small, far more efficient vehicles are far better in every respect.

If they brought the nano to Canada I'd buy one, and they're only $2500 in India. Hopefully they can get certified, and even if it costs $500 to bring it over I'd still go for it.

If total GHG emissions are a concern... one can make a strong argument for buying and maintaining a small used car rather than adding more emissions in the manufacture of a new one (where most of the GHG emissions originate during the life cycle of a vehicle). It's an automotive spin on reduce, reuse, recycle. I suppose if gas price is the issue, one would take the savings (not too applicable in the case of the super cheap Nano) one gets from buying used... and sink it into gas.

I'm still wondering why cars don't have inflatable soft body panels for safety. We have the technology.

"why cars don't have inflatable soft body panels for safety"

Kind of like a Zodiac?

If so, then I imagine because not all cars have them. The culture of fear on the road is very pervasive, and just leads to everyone being less safe (so far as I can tell)

Instead of a race to safety for all, it appears to be a race to least safe for all, the only winners are the manufacturers.

Some random rambings about emissions and safety.

Those ZENN electric cars (EVs) that are built in Canada but are only sold in US, and only allowed to be on the roads in BC are a good choice for urban runabouts. The range and top speed are limited but have zero emissions. ZENN is also coming out with a full EV car in 2009 with similar-to-gas-engine performance and plugs into the wall. Next is to work on clean-generation power solutions to support this shift to electricity. It's necessary to look at this now since there are more and more options these days to go electric with cars.

Currently if one needs highway speeds, there are "plug in hybrid" cars, or PHEVs that will fill that need. If you are rich, there is a pure electric sports car based on the lotus that will do 0-60 in 4 seconds, for about $100G

Speaking of safety, I read those Smart cars are well designed and have a high crash safety rating, even when involved with larger vehicles.

..and since I'm rambling about cars, I would be remiss in not waxing nostalgic about the Rambler. My brother had one, it was a cool car and stood up well when he drove it into a telephone pole.

Okay, this is a comment/question that's not at all based in fact or research, but one that I still want to make/ask...

Is there a big difference in net emmissions between a car fueled by gasoline and a plug-in electric? I would assume that for a plug-in electric, the emmissions would come from the electric factory, rather than out of the exhaust, but it'd still be there somewhere. I suppose the question is how much difference (and in which direction) is there between the polution for a gasoline-driven kilometer and an electric one... or can it even be calculated?

It would vary depending on where you live.

90% of BC's power comes from hydro. A lot of GHG is generated when building the dams, but once built the power is pretty green in terms of emissions (the question of habitat damage is another issue).

Conversely, in Ontario a significant portion of electricity comes from nuclear plants and burning fossil fuels (esp coal, plus oil & gas). http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Ontario_Power_Generation

The problem is not the kind of car you drive... it's the car you drive.

Stand on 12th ave at rush hour and see all the single occupant vehicles going by. No wonder our roads are crowded. They operate at roughly 25% capacity. Lots of fools on the phone too. If you can't put yourself second to public safety long enough to not drink and drive... oops, I mean cel and drive (there's not much difference) what are the odds you're going to actually give up some personal freedom and move your sorry ass under your own steam or via public transit most of the time? Let me tell you.... somewhere between slim and none.

Drive whatever you want. I'd be partial to a F250 diesel myself. But... don't think it makes much difference if any to the problem. The problems are systemic. An apt analogy would be to shoot yourself in the head with a shotgun, or with a .38 caliber pistol. Either way you're dead. Doesn't matter what you drive... as long as we continue to treat cars drivers as the most important road users and allocate resources with that in mind, we can't fix the myriad problems that accompany car use.

Nuclear energy is actually pretty clean. Comparing it to coal is not a good comparison IMO.

"Is there a big difference in net emmissions between a car fueled by gasoline and a plug-in electric?"

Short non-ranty answer is not really. Esp. when most of the ghg emissions related to automobiles are generated during its manufacture.

What's really obcene are these rebates and grants for hybrids. All of us as taxpayers are funding new cars for people who can already afford them and subsidizing auto manufacturers who have had decades to innovate, but instead have concentrated their efforts on tailfins and zoom-zoom propaganda. Awesome....

"why cars don't have inflatable soft body panels for safety"

Honda Puyo is a concept car with soft body panels unveiled at the 2008 car shows.

I've always been a man ahead of my times.

Yes, I realize that locally, much of our power is hydro-electric. However, if we have surplus, doesn't it get used elsewhere, and if we need more, we get it from elsewhere. So, since in theory we're one global (or at least North American?) closed system, for every additional car running on electricity, doesn't that mean that somewhere a coal-plant has to create one electric car-worth of additional power?

I'm not saying it's not worth it, I'm just curious whether it really makes as big of a difference as many might think.

I heard a young guy the other day point at an electric bus and say, "all of the world's polution problems would disappear if all vehicles were like those trolleys". I just couldn't help thinking that if that were the case, there'd be a whole lot more coal plants being built somewhere to make up for the electricity shortfall. And then, in this alternate universe, would people be touting the benefits of efficient-burning gasoline engines that don't need all that dirty coal-produced electricity.

Gasoline engines ARE remarkably efficient. Diesels too. Despite the energy losses to heat and friction, they transform fossil fuels into power very well.

It's when auto manufacturers put big engines in big passenger vehicles... and Buffy buys an Escalade to get her down to Yaletown for a manicure, or Joe Outdoors thinks he needs an F350 to go fishing that the system breaks down.

No need for cars to go 200 km/h so why do we consistently overpower them? I'll take deep-seated insecurity and a need for ostentatious displays of wealth for a thousand Alex.

"all of the world's polution problems would disappear if all vehicles were like those trolleys".

Not entirely untrue. One could make the argument that it's easier to capture and sequester GHGs emanating from one power plant smokestack rather than a million auto exhaust pipes.

Ahhh, to be young again... and have confidence in one's sweeping generalizations

I agree that we should have transit and bikes as number one mode of transport. If a car is needed, then car co-op or a EV would be the best 2nd mode.

BC Hydro will soon implement Net Metering, where you provide power back to the grid and pay the net amount on your bill. The idea is that power during peak time is at a premium, and you pay more for it.

Further, if you provide power back to the grid, it's worth more at peak times as well. These sources can come from solar power, wind turbine (rural most likely), or interestingly, from your electric car batteries, during peak hours. You charge those batteries during non-peak times and provide power during peak times. This helps mitigate the power consumed by charging. If you are gung ho, solar panels on your roof could go even further. Economically it would cost you about $35-50G to set up an integrated solar power system. Costs are falling for these systems and estimates say they won't be cost effective for another 10 years.

First off, I think Buffy looks damn hot in her Escalade. But Joe definitely doesn't have a rod big enough to need a 350, no matter what he wants to think. Now if we're talking about me on the other hand...

Interesting thought about net metering. I wonder how long it'll take me to pay down the investment of filling my basement with batteries to charge overnight and push the power back into the grid during the day.

... hmm... I still can't stop thinking about Buffy though.

Buffy's an idiot. Her flabby ass looks like cottage cheese under the Lululemon. You can do better.

It doesn't matter if it's a gas guzzler, hybrid, electric or flintstone mobile. More cars=demand for more roads=sprawl=demand for more roads=more sprawl etc...

don't forget more accidents, more deaths, more families and friends in mourning.

so, like Dugly sez, gas at $1.50 a litre and rising is just the beginning... esp. with peak oil being here or just around the corner. The pressure on alternate energy to step up and take oil's place is rising with it.

Looks like everyone will be forced to make the choices we should be making now. Riding bikes. Buying local produce. Wearing natural fibres. I mean some predictions have the sub burbs empty after peak oil. How to get to your Maple Ridge mansion on a acre lot if there's no more gas? Electricity will be rationed so your EV will be on blocks too. A little gloomy, I would hope it's more gradual than that...

As we see in Europe today, more and more people will install solar power systems and water filtration systems and we will have to move toward a more community-minded way of life. Hopefully we don't have build walls around those communities with all the other shortages and crises coming up which we haven't touched on yet. (the stress on world food supply, water shortages, flu epidemics, etc.)

it's all coming, just a question if it all comes at once and hopefully cooler heads prevail, or if it comes gradually and we can all make the switch to sustainable living without too much upheaval.

jeez I've taken up way too much bandwidth in this discussion. Back to you, VUL.

Peter Newman and Jeffrey Kenworthy

Sustainability and Cities--Overcoming Automobile Dependence.

Read it.

* There are about 40 residences so far doing this. The following is an exerpt from the full article, click link for interesting info and BC outlook for residential solar. *

Al Gore's film "An Inconvenient Truth" convinced Jeremy Mercer that it was time to act. The day the needle on the BC Hydro meter at his Powell River home started moving backward, he knew he was on his way.

Mercer and wife Jennifer – both engineers with Powell River's Catalyst Paper – were so convinced that they forked out $35,000 to have a solar collection system installed, complete with panels on the roof of their Powell River home. The result is a 75% reduction in the amount of electricity they buy from BC Hydro, and on sunny days, the knowledge that BC Hydro is buying some of their power.

"I think by the end of Year One, if my projections turn out to be right, I think I will have generated around 5,000 kilowatt hours," says Jeremy.

Study ranks Canadians second-last on environment

Updated Wed. May. 7 2008 9:52 PM ET

CTV.ca News Staff

A new study of consumer habits and how they affect the environment has given Canadians a dismal ranking of second-last in a list of 14 countries.
The study by The National Geographic Society and polling firm GlobeScan was released Wednesday.
Environment Minister John Baird called the study a "wake-up call," but said Canadians have to use more energy simply because they live in a colder climate.
"We're a northern country where it's cold. Obviously, Florida would use demonstrably less energy than we would," Baird told CTV News. "But it is a wake-up call that Canadians have to do more, the government has to do more, and the major polluters have to do more."
One thousand Canadians were asked questions that measured their behaviour in areas such as housing, transportation, food and consumption of goods, and each respondent was awarded a score out of 100 based on their environmental footprint.
Criteria for the "Greendex" score included size and energy efficiency of residence, method of travel and daily commute and use of fresh water, among other factors.
The top two nations were Brazil and India, while the U.S. was dead last, just behind Canada.
"The Greendex gives us an unprecedented, meaningful look at how consumers across the globe are behaving," said Terry Garcia, National Geographic's executive vice president of Mission Programs, in a news release.
"It will allow us over time to assess the progress that people are making to conserve, minimize waste and protect natural resources for the future.
Here are the results, ranked from best to worst in terms of environmental impact:

'B7 'B7Brazil: 60 points

'B7 India: 60 points

'B7 China: 56.1

'B7 Mexico: 54.3

'B7 Hungary: 53.2

'B7 Russia: 52.4

'B7 United Kingdom: 50.2

'B7 Germany: 50.2

'B7 Australia: 50.2

'B7 Spain: 50.0

'B7 Japan: 49.1

'B7 France: 48.7

'B7 Canada: 48.5

'B7 U.S.: 44.9

cont.

"We wanted to give people a better idea of how consumers in different countries are doing in taking action to preserve our planet by tracking, reporting, and promoting environmentally sustainable consumption and citizen behavior," the report states.
The report is different from others that grade countries according to the environmental track record of their governments, companies and industry practices, because it focuses on the habits of individual consumers.
All of the questions fell under the following four categories: energy, transportation, travel and consumer goods.
Consumers could earn points if they made choices to repair rather than replace items, if they chose green products over environmentally unfriendly items, or if they used cold water to wash their laundry and used a clothesline rather than a dryer.
The study also took into account choices that are controlled more by the circumstances and environment of individuals, such as the climate where they live, the availability of green products and public transportation options.
Perhaps surprisingly, the study found that consumers in developing nations actually feel more responsible for environmental problems than those in developed countries.
Six of 10 people in developing nations report experiencing negative health effects directly related to environmental issues. In developed countries, only three in 10 reported health effects due to environmental issues.
Those in developing nations also felt most strongly that global warming will harm their way of life during their lifetime -- and they want to do something about it.
The study found those consumers were most likely to feel guilty about the state of the environment, and were more willing to take action to do something to minimize their environmental footprint.
"By contrast, consumers in developed countries, who have more environmentally friendly options to choose from, often don't make those choices," the report states, pointing out the following about people in developed nations:
'B7 'B7They have larger homes and are more likely to have air-conditioning.
'B7 They generally own more cars, drive alone most frequently and use public transport infrequently.
'B7 They are least likely to buy environmentally friendly products and to avoid environmentally unfriendly products.
The U.S. had the poorest results in all those areas, among both developed and developing nations.
"They are by far the least likely to use public transportation, to walk or bike to their destinations or to eat locally grown foods. They have among the largest average residence size in the survey. Only 15 per cent say they minimize their use of fresh water," the report states.
Canadians, however, aren't much better.
In total, 29 per cent of Canadians have nine or more rooms in their homes, use insulation and heat their homes -- and rarely choose environmentally friendly heating options.

Mr. Baird's contention that Canada's colder clime requires greater energy use ignores the fact that most of us live along the 49th parallel and other countries with similar climates such as Hungary and Russia are beating us in this arena.

Okay... hold on a sec... this guy spent $35k to save 5,000 kwh per year?

At the rough cost of about $0.07 per kwh, doesn't that mean he'll have that system paid for by... oh, I don't know know, say... 100 years. Not factoring in interest, inflation, etc.

Sheesh, no wonder our roofs aren't littered with panels.

Mortakai, you must not know that many engineers. :P

My understanding of the statement was that they'd be generating 5000kwh over and above the power they used. Hydro estimates the average house uses 1,000kwh per month.

Also, I would expect that energy costs will rise, increasing his savings every year.

Ah, well that makes a huge difference. That'd drop it down to 83 years...

... I mean, "who in their right mind...". Oh right... "engineers"... it's all clear to me now.

Re: Solar

Yeah, the economics don't really add up (yet) but maybe the recent ground swell in environmental concern will be enough to see the technology through to cost effectiveness. For me, I'd have my doubts the cells will still be working in 50 years (anyone know of any other electronics made using current standards that lasts for 50 years?).

Re: EV

I have to think BC hydro is dreading a mass switch to EV. Since it's rates to cosumers are fixed at a value below market, it is in it's interest to have BCers conserve so they can sell at a higher rate to others.

Further, with it assets easily stored and delivered at any time of day, it is in it's interest to buy energy from plants (NG, Coal, Nuclear, etc) during the low usage periods (evening) and sell during the high periods (day). So, if you are charging your BC registered EV during the evening (which you will undoubtedly need to do), you will - for all intents and purposes - be charging it using coal-fire, ng-fire, or nuclear energy.

Re: Equivalent function from a car you plug-in to house electricity over night...

The math isn't all that attractive. 1.8Kw (15A at 120VAC) *8 hours = 14.4khw stored energy (assuming 100% efficiency batteries). That equates to running a car at about 20hp output (think Toyota Echo at ~80kph) for an hour.

At first site, that seems reasonable, but you will be a slave to your charger. Forget to plug in one night and you'll be riding the bus. That little swing out to Steveston might mean a slow ride back. In short, the EV car will be much, much less convenient than our current concept of "car". By comparison, the bus will appear more reliable.

I'm all for EV's, but I think the performance claims are often exaggerated. Caveat emptor.

Inflatable electric cars. Somewhere upthread a genius of staggering proportions, or at least a proportionate genius who sometimes staggers, already predicted this development.

I also have a number of prescient business ideas just waiting for an investor with more money than sense -- in case anybody wants to gamble their kid's college fund on a kooky idea or three.


http://www.physorg.com/news131804347.html

A couple points I wanted to throw in about the GHG impact of producing Electricity in BC. First, BC is a net importer of electricity, with our extra demand supplied from Alberta and the NW States. Second, BC Hydro's growth plan calls for a 50-50 mixture of 'clean' and fossil-fuel based supply in the next 20 years. In this part of the world that can only come from coal. Carbon Sequestration has something like a 25% energy penalty on the power production process, and this obviously has a greater impact if the coal needs to be transported large distances to get to a power plant. Basically, in BC, there's a GHG impact whenever you use energy.

Even if BC manages to become a net exporter of electricity (through demand reduction or increased capacity), we would still trade electricity with our neighbours to the south. Essentially, when there's a large demand spike (ie the sun comes up and every heat pump in CA turns on) a nuke or coal plant can't be dialed up quickly - they need hours or days to increase their output. The only source that can ramp up in minutes is Hydro-electric. So dams run during the peak times and they are closed at night to recharge reservoirs. With BC's huge hydro system, we'll always supply peak power to our neighbours, and use their fossil based generation to cover our base load. Incidentally, we charge more for the peak power than we pay for the off-peak, and make billions in the process.

So, accept that there's no silver bullet. EV, Plug-in Hybrids, etc all have a substantial GHG impact. The real focus should be on reducing our demand for energy. Drive less, when you do drive, drive the most efficient vehicle you can find, buy regionally, insulate your home, etc, etc.

Aside, BC Hydro has submitted an application to the BC Utility Commission to implement a block-rate billing scheme. Essentially if this is implemented, the price you pay to BC Hydro will get progressively higher as you consume more each month. Practically this would lower your costs if you only use electricity for lights and hot water, but would increase your bill substantially if you have electric heating in your home, or an EV/plug-in.

About PV panels - there's no business case for them, they are inefficient, and they use a lot of fairly exotic materials (read heavy metals) in their production. If you want to capture heat from the sun, put up solar thermal panels to preheat your hot water. They capture a much higher fraction of the sun's energy than PV, cost less, and give a better return. If you have a hydronic heating system in your home, you can get a ROI of under 15 years, compared to 35+ for PV.

All that to say, I agree, bring on the price hikes.

Kieran

Blackfish #24, engineer

Thank you for that post, quite informative.

I had been talking with some of my friends about the recent mineral exploration rights that the Provincial government just sold, they made several hundred million (I honestly don't remember the exact figure)

I wonder what impact it would have on driving / green house gasses if they did a 2 year experiment of making public transit completely free in BC. Translink generates just under 300mil per year on fares. Throughout BC it must be under 400mil. In my opinion the savings just on collecting fares would be big as well (it must cost several million per year just to collect/monitor fares).

My prediction is that it would be a tremendous success. I think the small barrier of fees (no matter how small) makes a difference, so even if they just lowered fares to a more reasonable $1 it would still be a barrier, but when it's completely free people could just get on and off where/when they wanted. I would imagine it would save enough traffic to essentially make most of the road expansions unecessary and thus be a net cost savings.

However I also believe nothing short of actually running this as an experiment would be sufficient to truly determine the impact.

Although I suppose that depends on how the rest of us/you/the taxpayers feel about subsidizing the difference.

Busses: agreed, they could definately be cheaper and therefore more accessible to the public. I'd be willing to subsidize it with my tax dollars if it meant I didn't have to pay 9 dollars one-way to get through 3 zones because my $4.50 3 zone transfer runs out in 90 minutes i.e. before I actually get to my destination. We may be a midsized city now, but growth is inevitable, never mind the impact the Olympics will have on the city, so it would only make sense that we invest in our transit system. Also, theoretically the more people we have the more taxes would be generated and could be put towards public transit.

Cars: I think it's really short-sighted to think that only taking transit or bikes' is the ultimate solution to pollution/emission problems. As long as people are having children, getting sick/injured, or move from house to house (the list is inexhaustive of course) there will be a demand for vehicles. I repeat there WILL be a demand for vehicles. Now that's not to say that making the choice to ride a bike or take public transit won't help, of course it will! And for the majority of most people's lives they will be able to use public transit and/or walk/bike/skate. But it's more about realising that we as a city must come up with creative ways to get busses, trains, bikes, trucks and cars to live in harmony.

Unfortunately most of the major changes I've seen to the roads (which i've both driven on and bussed on in several different cities) haven't helped with congestion, and while building bigger roads isn't necessarily the answer, I think building smarter roads is -take for example, a significant lack of bus lanes, a lack of right/left turn lanes, what appears to be a 2 lane maximum policy on most roads...etc... in the lower mainland- Combining thoughtful road planning strategies to get the most number of cars and busses through in the least amount of time seems like a positive solution to me. Including things like roundabouts (which require NO electricity unlike standard intersections) bus only lanes, HOV lanes for 2 or more people and the public promotion of low/no emission vehicles, Scooters, MoPeds, bikes and walking I think we'd have less of a problem regarding traffic and air pollution.

Furthermore, and perhaps someone could answer the following question with more scientific evidence, but in my mind making roads smaller and MORE difficult to drive on (theoretically to make people NOT want to drive) is only going to lead to congestion and vehicles idling in traffic twice a day during rush hour. Now if I'm not mistaken, a bunch of idling vehicles is worse than a bunch of vehicles moving and getting home faster. Never mind the fact that many busses because of their routes, can't escape the traffic either and still aren't any faster than driving a car. I could be wrong, this question is up for grabs.

Finally the city as a whole needs to make smarter choices about how it develops itself. I've seen with my own eyes whole communities being built (like the UniverCity Development at SFU) where no attention has been paid to putting infrastructure such as grocery stores, and other amenities near the homes that have been built. To use the UniverCity example, where 250+ homes have been built, people are FORCED to get into their cars (as busses are a 20 minute walk away and would take more than a 30 minutes to get to the nearest shopping location) and drive to get groceries, clothes, other merchandise etc... What sense does that make? Why should people be forced into taking cars/transit at all?

In older communities like Marpole, Commercial drive, new westminster, many times people don't have to get into a car or bus at all because they can walk to the nearest market, butcher, convenience store, salon etc...It's not always the case but it certainly makes a difference. It's something to think about nonetheless.

Just my two cents

What an idiot Ms Jolie is. Posted here instead of the carpool thread, but relevant to that
discussion.

excerpt below from People magazine (but I found it on Google news)

Angelina Jolie can seem like a superwoman – dashing around the globe with her impossibly
cute kids (not to mention Brad Pitt!) in tow.

But some feats – like her recent humanitarian trip to Afghanistan followed, just days later, by
a high-profile awards show appearance – can exhaust even her.

"I woke up at 3 in the morning with four kids with jet lag and two babies," a weary Jolie, 33,
told the Los Angeles Times recently, hours before she presented an award to Clint Eastwood.
"I put myself together for a few hours and go out. And then I go home. This is my job."

Still, she shows no signs of settling down in Hollywood. "I don't dislike it here," the Oscar-
winner told the newspaper. "I just really do love to travel. I love other cultures. And I love
raising my kids in the world. I'm so fortunate that I get to do that."

How is that relevant to any discussion?

Looks like you have some bone to pick with Ms. Jolie, but nothing that you posted seemed to indicate in any fashion that she's an idiot? So far as I can tell she's done a lot of good in this world. Has spent vast amounts of her own money on others. Spent a great deal of her time and energy on the same. She's apparently some kind of UN humanitarian ambassador, has actually exerted effort in pursuit of making the world a better place for those who do not have the good fortune of having been born in Canada (you know, those of us who apparently have enough time to care about what term kids are calling each other at school these days).

At any rate, whatever trollish post this was about doesn't seem to be related at all. Perhaps you should make some new thread about what celebrities you think are idiots?

I'm not sure that this is his point (it doesn't come across particularly clearly) but I'm guessing he
considers her globe-trotting lifestyle idiotic for the enormous energy expenditure of the flights
and other transportation. Or perhaps it is her stated ambition that her children continue such an
unsustainable lifestyle that riles Mr. Kowalski. (Then again, he may be referring to her
description of getting dressed up and hobnobbing with other rich famous people as a job. )

I agree that his post wasn't up to his usual standards in terms of clarity (the UN Ambassador role
sounds like a plus and weakens his argument, regardless of whether he questions the value of
that role), but there is relevance to it that only takes a small amount of contemplation to
recognize.

Well, she does seem to feel fortunate she can raise her kids "in the world." That's somewhat funny.

But she does also travel extensively (arguably ludicrously) as part of her self-imposed job. Is it for real benefit? Part-time humanitarian or not, there is not much she can do for Afghanistan in person.

I have several friends who have travelled for humanitarian purposes. While they all spoke highly of their eye-opening experiences, they also all returned rather embarrassed and humbled-- they spent large sums of money and burned significant amounts of carbon travelling to places where they contributed rather little long-term benefit. They all returned with the same mantra: "think globally; act locally."

It reminds me of my former grad school supervisor. We worked in fuel cells and fuel-reformer-related research. The guy was an ardent environmentalist, and he believed strongly in an emissions-free future, but he'd fly out between Norway, Ontario, and B.C. with shocking frequency, for seemingly trivial reasons.

He once even left me in charge of his undergraduate classes while he flew off to Brazil to act as an on-call advisor for an inter-government environmental policy summit. Exciting, yes, but tremendously ironic, and more than a little bit hypocritical. His personal carbon footprint is enormous.

Allow me to assist...

"idiot" n. 1. A mentally deficient person with intelligence in the lowest measurable range. 2. A stupid person.

Interpretation:

Mr K has been leaked a document--same source as the recently leaked loan by an unnamed local government group--that shows the results of Ms J's recent IQ test, measured by numbers so small that three monkeys counted it up on their collective hands and toes.

The rest of his post was an inadvertent copy/paste of information he's including in his thesis, entitled, "5 of the hottest women and why they keep me up at night".

Hope that helps.

I actually don't find her that hot. My 'type' runs more to petite brunettes and the naughty
librarian look.

I think she's an idiot for dragging her kids all over the planet so much that they're jet-lagged
and somehow assuming that's raising her kids 'in the world'.

I also think she's an idiot for burning fossil fuels like crazy and claiming to care about
children while wasting a valuable resource and polluting the air. Fast Runner (too lazy to scroll
up and too anal to spell it wrong) nailed it when (s)he mentioned hypocrisy.

Dugly:

If you have an opinion on what children call each other in the schoolyard feel free to share it.
There's a whole other thread for that subject if you're referring to my antipathy to hearing
'gay' tossed around without regard for who and how it can impact.

I hope I'm not the only one watching the CBC's program on the environmental costs of air travel
right now.

Leon: I've posted in that thread now. Mostly as an example of how threads work (related discussion on a topic) more than out of a burning desire to have my voice heard on the matter being discussed. Primarily because I don't see a particular topic so much other than "you don't like something" which I don't really get chuffed about.

As for Ms Jolie, I can honestly say I wish I could bring my family with me when traveling. I think a good exposure to the world makes us all better at and more understanding of the issues that the world faces. As atanarjuat many people come back with a new respect of the world and how people interact with it. The key point of this last sentence is tha tit's AFTER they come back. The cost of that might be some burnt oil, but I hope the benefits outweighs that.

For fossil fuels the issue is complex, but the solution really does boil down to acting locally. Drive only when, where and what you need (if you need anything at all!) Turn off the lights, etc.

However the #1 thing you can do to minimize your impact is not reproduce. I've already crossed that line, and it wouldn't be a sacrifice I'd be willing to make at any rate. Surely my daughter's impact on the environment needs to be counted against my choices. I entered the contract freely and with a good idea of what was involved (*NOTE: What was involved environmentally, who knew about the sleep deprivation!)

I don't think that she's an idiot for wanting her children to be exposed to the ugliness of the world, as well as the joys. I wish I could share as much with mine.

"Has spent vast amounts of her own money on others."

wikipedia says about $2m. Another website estimates her net worth at $35m. I wouidn't consider
5% to be a vast amount. She could spend $30m and still live a life 99% of the population
wouidn't even dare to dream of. Not that I care particularly. It's her money to do as she pleases
with. But, let's not pretend she's making any huge sacrifices.

Well, I would suppose that rare few people, at least in the circles that I touch, come anywhere near close to spending 5% of income or net worth on charity. Assuming that's how we're 'defining' "others".

Now, if "others" includes my wife and family, well then I don't have a cent to my name.

The less you make, the more a small percentage affects your life. That's why taxes are
progressive and rich people are taxed on a higher percentage of their income. Note that the R.C.
church expects 10% of your income and for many people their net worth is $0.00 in that all the
money they make is spent on living expenses.

How much do you expect her to pay? You've already pointed out that she pays far more in taxes to support those that make less.

Would you be happy if she paid 10%? Or would you say that 3.5 million wasn't enough, that she'd still have more money than most people. (because she would)

Would she have to give away maybe 95% of her income? She'd still be in that top few percent of earners, but you'd then be happy with her contributions to society?

I think that it is a huge fallacy to suggest the mechanism to alleviating these issues is hyper-charity. It's been proven time and time again that you can't buy your way out of poverty. It wouldn't even work in a small scale like Vancouver, and becomes far less tenable on a large scale like Africa. Her efforts to draw attention to these issues, bringing cameras and focus to those areas which need it most has done far more than the 2m that she has donated, and I don't want to take away from the huge contribution that 2m represents as an individual donation.

You do Ms. Jolie and everyone else that actually makes a difference and works towards that when you mock them for how 'little' their effort is.

Is it possible that she deserves the money she makes? She arguably adds that much value to the companies she works for. They presumably are not in a monopoly sort of situation where they coerce money from individuals. If she didn't add that value then I imagine they wouldn't hire her.

Here is your points for why she's an idiot:
(1)dragging her kids all over the planet so much that they're jet-lagged
and somehow assuming that's raising her kids 'in the world'.

(2) burning fossil fuels like crazy and claiming to care about
children while wasting a valuable resource and polluting the air

On point (1), yes, traveling places and experiencing different cultures does count as raising them 'in the world'. As I mentioned in my previous post, I wish I could do the same, I think it would make my daughter a more caring, compassionate, curious and well-rounded person.

On point (2), I guess you might be able to argue it as hypocritical if she were campaigning against using fossil fuels, however it's certainly not hypocritical as it relates to human rights and children. Your knee-jerk reaction to an issue that you apparently care about (fossil fuels) doesn't translate into her being a hypocrite.

Oh, and despite the fact that it's tougher for us non-millionaires to give 5%, there's a hell of a lot of us, so giving 1% makes a much bigger difference.

Do you give even 1%?

"Is it possible that she deserves the money she makes?"

No.

Okay, the humour is wearing thin.

What Jolie meant to say was that she enjoyed being able to give her children a cosmopolitan upbringing.

What Jolie let slip was her sense of good fortune in being able to raise her children "in the world." Maybe the rest of us just took that for granted, but we all enjoy the same good fortune.

There, I killed the horse.

"How much do you expect her to pay? You've already pointed out that she pays far more in
taxes to support those that make less.
Would you be happy if she paid 10%? Or would you say that 3.5 million wasn't enough, that
she'd still have more money than most people. (because she would)

Would she have to give away maybe 95% of her income? She'd still be in that top few
percent of earners, but you'd then be happy with her contributions to society?"

Sure, 95% sounds good to me.

I think that it is a huge fallacy to suggest the mechanism to alleviating these issues is hyper-
charity. It's been proven time and time again that you can't buy your way out of poverty.

I didn't suggest that. But, if you took all the kerosene it takes to fly her and her posse hither
and thither and instead used it for heating and cooking purposes in the places she visits, it
would have an immediate, tangible benefit to the people we are all pretending to care about.

"It wouldn't even work in a small scale like Vancouver, and becomes far less tenable on a
large scale like Africa. Her efforts to draw attention to these issues, bringing cameras and
focus to those areas which need it most has done far more than the 2m that she has donated,
and I don't want to take away from the huge contribution that 2m represents as an individual
donation."

What difference has it made?

"You do Ms. Jolie and everyone else that actually makes a difference and works towards that
when you mock them for how 'little' their effort is."

I'm assuming you meant "do them a disservice". Flying somewhere for a week for a photo
opportunity isn't much of an effort. It's harder to stay home and actually live by the principles
one espouses. Perhaps the children living in poverty in America aren't picturesque enough for
her.

"Is it possible that she deserves the money she makes? She arguably adds that much value to
the companies she works for. They presumably are not in a monopoly sort of situation where
they coerce money from individuals. If she didn't add that value then I imagine they wouldn't
hire her."

See previous comment. She's an actor. Ranks up there with professional athlete as the most
over-paid segment of society. Teachers, soldiers, engineers, police, emergency, medical
personnel, those are the folks who should be pulling down the truly big bucks, not those who
play games or pretend to be other people for a living. Commodifying entertainment to the
extent we have is what has driven up their perceived value. They don't 'deserve' to make
more than the average wage.

"Here is your points for why she's an idiot:
(1)dragging her kids all over the planet so much that they're jet-lagged
and somehow assuming that's raising her kids 'in the world'.

(2) burning fossil fuels like crazy and claiming to care about
children while wasting a valuable resource and polluting the air

On point (1), yes, traveling places and experiencing different cultures does count as raising
them 'in the world'. As I mentioned in my previous post, I wish I could do the same, I think it
would make my daughter a more caring, compassionate, curious and well-rounded person."

Why? Children are born with those characteristics. You can encourage them at home and in
your neighbourhood. It doesn't take a trip overseas.

"On point (2), I guess you might be able to argue it as hypocritical if she were campaigning
against using fossil fuels, however it's certainly not hypocritical as it relates to human rights
and children."

Ya think? Better take another look at the geopolitical realities of the world if you don't think
hyper-consumption in the Western World isn't playing a big role in the exploitation of children
in developing nations. Especially as it relates to fossil fuel consumption. Iraq wasn't blown to
pieces over their papyrus harvest. Nigeria isn't a human rights disaster because we want to
exploit their vast cassava reserves.

Your knee-jerk reaction to an issue that you apparently care about (fossil fuels) doesn't
translate into her being a hypocrite."

Profligate use of fossil fuels for pleasure is akin to selling your house to finance a birthday
party. We're wasting a precious resource for pleasure. If you truly care about children, taking
steps to ensure they don't freeze in the dark in a couple of generations is a very on-topic way
to go about it. Ms Jolie's jet-set lifestyle is totally hypocritical if she actually does care about
children.

From an article by Peter Singer (full text linked below):

"Yet it was not until, in preparing this article, I calculated how much America’s Top 10 percent of
income earners actually make that I fully understood how easy it would be for the world’s rich to
eliminate, or virtually eliminate, global poverty."

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