Maher's Digital World

Documentaries

Offline scarface

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Re: Documentaries
« Reply #30 on: October 12, 2017, 03:33 PM »
Tonight, I'm going to advise you to watch this conference, titled "how to feed Europe if the system is collapsing". Unfortunately it's in French, but you can perhaps understand when the lecturer is showing some charts. In fact, he's dealing with the problem of the end of oil. Since everything depends on it, logistics, food production, etc..., nothing will work anymore if there are shortages. Well, Maher is going to say those are not optimistic forecasts. Actually it is: Servigne thinks the collapse will be so brutal that there won't be a third world war when it happens. However, he thinks we'll be far less numerous by the end of the century.
https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=ZscgkqTe5Y4

« Last Edit: October 12, 2017, 03:35 PM by scarface »

Offline scarface

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Re: Documentaries
« Reply #31 on: October 22, 2017, 01:47 AM »
Today, I’m going to hold an exceptional conference to talk about insects.

Maybe you don’t know it, but If we were to weigh all the ants in the world, they would weigh as much as all of the people. But today, I’m not going to talk about ants, I’m going to deal with the worrying disappearance of the insects. Some of you may have been wondering “ where are all the crushed insects on the windshield?” Well, there is an explanation: entomologists report an 80% drop in invertebrates ... in just 24 years.

Trapped in the headlights, they crashed by the hundreds on the windshields. Flocks of mosquitoes, greasy grasshoppers that left a yellow juice on the glass on the scene of the crash,  and these big cockchafers that hit like hail the sheet of the cabin. But yes, remember: a few decades ago, one only had to take a walk in the fields to make dad's gleaming vehicle good for a great cleaning, studded with corpses of unfortunate creatures of all kinds. .

And then, little by little, the cars came out of their field trips more and more clean. First, we did not pay much attention, of course: after all, they were only insects ...
Unfortunately, this is not good news. Who would have thought that one day we would regret these massive genocides of Diptera, Lepidoptera and other Coleoptera? However, it is not for pure sadism, nor for primary entomophobia, nor even for the simple pleasure of rubbing our foamy sponge on the car on Sunday afternoon.

This is because it may just herald the irretrievable decline of insects caused by the heavy use of pesticides in the countryside. Less and less numerous in the countryside for a few decades, small animals seem to have undergone a vertiginous...and invisible demographic decline.



So, some would say that there is nothing to worry about: after all, have not vehicles become more and more aerodynamic over time? Perhaps if we harvest fewer insects today, it is simply thanks to the evolutions of the techniques of the car builders.

We would like to believe ... But the drivers of Kangoo or Fiat Multipla can testify, the more or less tapered profile of the vehicle does not change anything.
Same result if you drive a big jeep, a truck, or even if you were driving a sports car in the 1980s: windshields are getting cleaner, there are fewer insects, and it's not a big deal.

The reason seems obvious, and unfortunately, it is extremely worrying: there would simply be fewer and fewer insects in the countryside. As we do not spend our time glued to the grass counting small animals, we quickly did not notice this sudden and discreet decline, this inexorable decline in the number of invertebrates. And yet, when we think about it, if we stop for a moment and compare our current experience with our memories of yesteryear, the difference is very clear.

Of course, these observations of crushed insects, which everyone can see from his side, are not very scientific. And it turns out that, if the disappearance of insects is done in the greatest discretion, it is because science has a hard time quantifying exactly this kind of things ... for lack of data.

Indeed, the majority of existing censuses are those of amateur naturalists, butterfly collectors and other observers. Although they may also give some indications and trends, these observations must be made with tweezers because they do not necessarily have the rigor of analysis from professional scientists.

But new data on the abundance of wild insects, taken over the long term, are coming to the surface, says the journal Science in an article published a few days ago.

From various surveys conducted by a group of entomologists since the early eighties and in more than a hundred nature reserves in Western Europe, these figures make us dizzy. Using a trap system that allowed them to calculate the total mass of insects collected, month after month, and several decades apart, the Krefeld Entomological Society has noted an extremely sharp decline in the amount of invertebrates caught .

Thus, between the years 1989 and 2013, the difference is very clear: in a point located in the north of Germany, the amount of insects has dropped by 78% in just 24 years!
To check if it was not just a bad year, scientists did a survey the following year, in 2014. But the numbers were still so low ... In a dozen other sites the decline of invertebrate masses was equally dramatic.



Even more frightening: just last year, a third of the bee colonies in the United States died ... and again, beekeepers were at the party: they normally lose 40% of their workforce per year ! While monoculture and the abundant use of pesticides are kings in this country, no fewer than seven species of bees have been declared at risk of extinction in 2016. Some even think of designing bees-drones to ensure the plant pollination, to replace them with automated mini-flying machines in the event that these insects disappear completely.

A real nightmarish landscape, shaped by the use of pesticides, by the lack of foraging flowers and shelter caused by the system of large-scale plantations, but also by various epidemic diseases and pest invasions, whose spread could be caused by pollution and climate disruption.

Honey insects are responsible for pollination, and we estimate that we owe them at least a third of our food production (fruits, vegetables, cereals). All these small insects, however, are one of the main pillars of natural cycles.



Perhaps it would be time to ask some existential questions about how we produce and consume? Although some pesticides are now banned or regulated, there are still many abuses.

Offline humbert

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Re: Documentaries
« Reply #32 on: October 22, 2017, 07:14 PM »
Even though ISIS has not YET been defeated, I strongly believe it's a matter of time before they're either wiped off the map or rendered ineffective. Every day that passes they lose more and more ground. As for attracting followers, there will always be a handful of nuts that will join, but their recruitment drives also make them easy to infiltrate. All the other Middle East players mentioned in the video also happen to be mortal enemies of ISIS. The narrator of the video even admits their dream of an Islamic Caliphate has been rendered impossible.

Where I do agree is with the idea that ending terrorism forever is an impossible dream. Keep in mind that terrorism is a strategy employed by many different groups of people, and it's been with us much before ISIS even existed.

With respect to insects, with the exception of small quantities of unique insects that live only in one specific place, their total irradication is impossible. They exist everywhere except Antarctica and the top of the Himalayas (the North Pole doesn't count because that's all water). They've gone from place to place and manage to survive whatever the odds. Earth is their planet, they were here billions of years before humans and will be here until the day this planet ceases to exist. In my back yard there is a small nest of red fire ants. This is an invasive specie who hitched a ride on a ship from their native Brazil, and have spread themselves all over the southern USA. They're very hard to kill and every days become more and more resistant to insecticides. Here at home every 3 months I spend $120 for a fumigator to come and fumigate my house. If I didn't this place would immediately be invaded by ants, roaches and spiders (technically insects, but still invasive pests). And of course our friend Ædes ægypti (the mosquito), who has killed more humans that all other animals combined, will NEVER make the endangered species list.
« Last Edit: October 22, 2017, 07:39 PM by humbert »

Offline scarface

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Re: Documentaries
« Reply #33 on: November 01, 2017, 04:55 AM »
Theodorin Obiang has been finally condemned in Paris.
To understand why Theodorin Obiang, the son of Equatorial Guinea's president, was on trial in Paris, watch this video: https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=tpgWCjcax1g

Offline humbert

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Re: Documentaries
« Reply #34 on: November 01, 2017, 08:34 PM »
What happened in Equatorial Guinea is nothing really new. Dictators of all presuasions notoriously abuse their power at the expense of the people. There are endless examples.

Re: Documentaries
« Reply #35 on: November 05, 2017, 03:36 AM »
100 Balfour Road
A short film
18 languages
https://youtu.be/vPndQGImVMc
Prophet Muhammad (Peace be upon him) said “Surah (chapter of) Hud and its sisters turned my hair gray"

Hud (11)
https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=uiqxo4UDVfU

Offline humbert

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Re: Documentaries
« Reply #36 on: November 06, 2017, 07:32 PM »
Well, I conclude that the Americans elected a President who is either an imbecile, or a liar.
Unfortunately, I'm afraid it may be the first option.

No imbecile reaches the position of President of the United States, arguably the world's most powerful man. Trump is a liar, a manupulator, a bully and a guy who will absolutely never admit he's wrong.

Offline scarface

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Re: Documentaries
« Reply #37 on: November 27, 2017, 03:47 PM »
Tonight, I'm going to give you a link for an exceptional video to understand the economic collapse:
https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=1dgjIeR5DBY

Do we have to deal with a temporary  combination of crises linked to a global redistribution of the cars or are we facing even deeper phenomena such as a collapse of society?
For the specialist who is talking, it’s clear that the collapse started a long time ago.
This conference is in French, but subtitles in several languages are available if you click on the nut.


We can think that all this will change because people are aware of these problems, as we can see on these photos.
But if we are optimistic, we'll have a better world, with a small population, with people closer to nature, where there will be no money because they will be worth zero.



Here in Washington, some Americans protesting against Trump about his policy for climate change.
Officially, this photo was taken in Karachi where supporters of the radical religious party, Tehreek-i-Labaik Ya Rasool Allah shout slogans during a sit-in protest on Nov. 27, 2017. Pakistani Islamists announced they were disbanding their sit-in near Islamabad after the country’s law minister resigned, caving in to the protesters who have been demanding his ouster in a three-week-long rally.



Some American people, after the invasion of the white house. We can be wondering if they have real claims or if they are looting the place. Apparently an ominous sign is indicating “black Friday”.


Nowadays, towns are larger and larger, because oil is cheap and easily available. But without oil things could change rapidly.



Here is a screenshot taken in Crysis 3, but it could have ben taken in Deir-ez-zor.





« Last Edit: April 07, 2019, 04:46 AM by scarface »

Offline humbert

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Re: Documentaries
« Reply #38 on: November 27, 2017, 10:50 PM »
Scarface: If you studied a little bit of history you'd realize that the world has never been better than it is right now and will continue in that direction. In the past 100 years technology has advance much faster than it ever has, even if you count the time before the pyramids of Egypt. It will continue rapidly in that direction. Things have been infinitely worse than they are right now, I could name example after example.

Offline scarface

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Re: Documentaries
« Reply #39 on: November 28, 2017, 07:07 AM »
Scarface: If you studied a little bit of history you'd realize that the world has never been better than it is right now and will continue in that direction. In the past 100 years technology has advance much faster than it ever has, even if you count the time before the pyramids of Egypt. It will continue rapidly in that direction. Things have been infinitely worse than they are right now, I could name example after example.

I appreciate the peremptory tone of humbert, but the lack of arguments leaves an unsettling feeling, and I am bit skeptical on the fact that technical progress could save us. In fact I think it's precisely the opposite: technical progress will accelerate the fall of complex civilizations.
Imagine, for example, Maher, in Palestine, in the middle of his olive groves (actually, it's just an assumption). He's relying on two oxen to pull his plow. Nothing can happen, if there is no more oil, well, he'll still have his cart full of olives, and another one full with maraschino cherries. So the collapse is not a problem for him. But for me it's a problem: I have got a Franprix in front of my building, and without oil, there will be no more food, no more saucison in Franprix and no more coke in your walmart. But Maher will still have his dried olives in his cellar.
In fact, technical progress makes societies more fragile. If we take a meadow, unmodified by man, it is a resilient environment: the plants grow without fertilizers.
In a field, however, fertilizers are killing microorganisms needed for plants. Until the 19th century fallowing was practiced, but it's not the case any more of course: it is now necessary to use pesticides, phosphorus, because soils are dead and nothing would grow without additives.

Let's take another example: the bitcoin (in my opinion it's a bubble). The technological progress also affected how we store our money and how we pay for the goods and services we need. The digital currencies only live in the virtual wold of the Internet. They have strange-sounding names, are governed by often unfamiliar rules , and require us to adopt new habits if we want to use them.
But it's also a regression: You can either buy bitcoins on public exchanges or you can earn them by doing some “bitcoin mining”– that is, participating in the process by which bitcoin transactions are verified and added to the public ledger (the blockchain) and also the means through which new bitcoins are released. Essentially, this means building and running your own server farm and, as the price has increased, more and more people appear to be doing this. The consequences are astonishing but predictable. According to one estimate, bitcoin mining is now consuming more electricity than 159 countries, including Ireland, Bahrain and the Slovak Republic. The same source reckons that it’s currently taking as much electricity as would be required to power 2.7m US households and that it’s responsible for 0.13% of global electricity consumption. If things go on like this, bitcoin mining will require all of Denmark’s electricity consumption by about 2020.
In my opinion, in a world in which we will run out of resources (depletion of uranium, oil, and coal, a little later), bitcoin has no future. But gold coins yes. Because gold remains a rare asset, and a gold coin has a universal value. Therefore, I thing technical progress is only an illusion, and will not make it possible to satisfy the primary needs such as eating or heating in the near future.
« Last Edit: November 28, 2017, 07:27 AM by scarface »