Monday, October 5, 2009

Greetings, It has been awhile.

Malawian boy uses wind to power hope, electrify village.

Read that article today on It is impressive but the real sticking point is the last two lines at the bottom.
"Kamkwamba is part of a generation of Africans who are not waiting for their governments or aid groups to come to their rescue, according to the author.
"They are seizing opportunities and technology, and finding solutions to their own problems," Mealer said. "One of the keys of his success is ... he's never wanted to rest on his laurels."

That simple excerpt is something that everyone around the world should be doing. It should not just come from a generation of Africans. It should be something that all people should be doing to make things better for themselves and the rest of the world.

If you want to make things better get out and do something don't wait for others to do it for you.

Wednesday, April 15, 2009

Gas and Electric

So from the desk of the Big, Bald, Beautiful, Brother I ponder this question.
Will the Chevy Volt, which does not go into production until November of next year, be the start of real Mass produced electric cars? So for the next year to two years we will continue to spew carbon monoxide into the air with our combustion engines. Are the car makers going about this electric thing the wrong way? In my opinion, yes they are. There are several manufacturers that have hybrids that are available and there are a couple that have full electric cars. But the problem with them is that they are expensive especially if you have a mortgage, car payment and other bills to pay. The best you can do in this case is maybe add to your bill every moth by trading in your car for one of these. That helps the economy but it really does not help the Earth or you very much. I think that companies like Tesla need to license their powertrain out to specialty shops that can convert cars that people already own. I would like to see.....a Toyota Scion xB converted to electric. Yes the boxy shape probably will not help in its mileage but.... there is now room for a few more batteries. By reusing vehicles that are already on the road we should not be adding more junk to landfills. What do you think?

Tuesday, January 20, 2009

The Dawn of a New Day

In a few hours from now a it will be the dawn of a New Day. Today we will see the old administration out and the new one in.  With that many hopes are rising.  President Elect Obama will have some very tough days ahead. I hope that many give him the necessary room to do what must be done.  Do not think that his taking office will mean that people will immediately get jobs or that the economy will suddenly turn around.  For that it will take time, patience and a little less greed.  
In my opinion the economic downturn in the US, which sparked the rest of the world, was largely a symptom of greed.  This did not happen overnight nor did it just suddenly start in 2008.  I think that this started much earlier.  It started with jobs being outsourced to foreign countries, creating a trade deficit that continued to grow.  The US at one point in history, that spanned many years, actually manufactured goods.  These goods were used by everyone here in the US, now almost everything is imported and look at where that has gotten us.  Chinese toys made with lead.....

Outsourcing to Mexico because of the cheaper labor and signing NAFTA only made real sense to Mexico in the long run because it created jobs there.  When the cost of doing business in Mexico came up to close to US costs the next new outsource location was found......China.  China with its HUGE workforce of cheap labor and methods of manufacturing facility layouts.  Well look at where they are now, #3 on the largest economy and #1 and #2 are struggling.

Oil......I once heard the outgoing president of a major oil company say "I really don't care if the people are upset about the high price of gas. It could go to $5 a gallon for all I care."  That same president was retiring at the time when the Oil companies had profits in the Billions range in one year.  The Government of Saudi Arabia, who are our allies when it suits them, along with the rest of OPEC were raking in the cash with gas at $130-$140 a barrel.  These countries were building economies on those numbers, did they think that American's or anyone else would not slowdown the consumption?  We did and their prices fell.  Now the US automakers are getting bailed out but why?  Because of the only real manufacturing of large goods in the US is in the Auto business and those companies put all of their money into SUVs.  So if we bailed out GM....can I stop making my car payments now.... cause to me it seems like they are double dipping in my pocket.

The world economy is like a complex ecosystem.  You can not damage one part without affecting the entire system.
So President Elect Obama will try to return balance to the ecosystem and he will not be able to do it alone.  It will take everyone.
Good Luck and Good Day.

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