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Old 05-09-2011, 06:09 PM   #321 (permalink)
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Because someone asked via private message...

I wasn't provoked to close this thread by anyone in particular.

I'm just hoping (in vain?) to encourage the usual suspects to resist getting caught up in ideological/political debates. You're killing my buzz.

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Old 05-11-2011, 10:27 AM   #322 (permalink)
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Thread re-opened.

---

Front page of the Ottawa paper this morning predicting $1.50 / litre ($5.67 / US gallon). Currently about 5 cents away from the all time national high set in 2008 of 1.40.
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Old 05-11-2011, 01:35 PM   #323 (permalink)
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Originally Posted by Arragonis View Post
I think I need to see some examples of where "most of them have peaked and are heading downwards", but agreed anyone's choices will be subjective and different from anyone else's - mine are not the same as yours probably.
OK, here's an example that I think is about as non-subjective and non-political as possible: health. Up until about the '60s or so, overall public health was on an upward curve. A lot of really serious diseases had been eliminated by vaccinations (I'm old enough to remember a couple of older kids in my school who'd had polio, and walked with crutches & leg braces) and improved diet & sanitation.

Nowadays the curve has flattened, if not actually started downwards. The health care system seems barely able to keep up with the current level of lifestyle diseases, and that only by offloading a great part of the cost on to the healthy. A few minutes observing bodies at e.g. the local WalMart suggests that there's going to be a major increase in these diseases in the next few decades. On the plus side, the only major advance in the past few decades has been anti-smoking campaigns.
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Old 05-11-2011, 02:05 PM   #324 (permalink)
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Originally Posted by Arragonis View Post
It took nearly 500 years and a nice warm climatic period (shhh, we aren't allowed to mention that now ) to help population growth.
Remember that correlation is not causation. If you look at the history with more than a superficial search for something useable for climate change denial, you'll find that the increase in European agricultural productivity was very strongly linked to the introduction of the horse collar. (Rome, of course, imported much of its grain from North Africa, and used the slave-worked latifunda system...)

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And what did that population growth produce ?

Disaster, starvation ?

Well, not quite.
Well, it was a disaster if you weren't really enthusiastic about being ruled by the Church. (And I'll see your cathedral, and raise you Stonehenge. Or FTM a Hagia Sophia or a Parthenon :-)) Just as I imagine many of the Egyptian peasantry weren't totally appreciative of the Pyramids, and I'm not real happy about paying taxes to support athletic stadiums. Nor do I see any of these as showing an improvement in individual quality of life, but as evidence of the power of a government/religion that could compel people to build these things.
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Old 05-11-2011, 02:25 PM   #325 (permalink)
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We're also seeing polio, TBC, and the like rising again.

Previously wiped-out diseases are now being re-imported by incoming immigrants and non-vaccinated people travelling abroad, and are affecting the people whose stupid parents refused to have them vaccinated, usually for religious reasons.
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Old 05-11-2011, 03:10 PM   #326 (permalink)
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This question is to our brothers and sisters outside the US. I know that you guys have had high fuel prices for a long time, and truth is is that the US consumer has never had to deal with it on a protracted level until now.

What's it like for you? I haven't been to the UK or mainland Europe ( yet ) and it would go a long way to offering a comparison or contrast.
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Old 05-11-2011, 03:40 PM   #327 (permalink)
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The price of gasoline in Canada is about 30% higher than in the states. It hit $1.41 per litre this morning.

Half the vehicles sold here are still pickup trucks and SUV's. People still pass me on the roads while I am going slightly higher then the posted limit. They still tail gate and in general drive like gas is free.
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Old 05-11-2011, 04:32 PM   #328 (permalink)
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Originally Posted by euromodder View Post
Previously wiped-out diseases are now being re-imported by incoming immigrants and non-vaccinated people travelling abroad, and are affecting the people whose stupid parents refused to have them vaccinated, usually for religious reasons.
And don't forget antibiotic resistance, caused in no small part by an affluence which made it possible to give them for even minor illnesses, as placebos for things like colds, and even as growth promoters in animal feedlots.
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Old 05-11-2011, 04:56 PM   #329 (permalink)
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Half the vehicles sold here are still pickup trucks and SUV's.
However Canadians' car purchases are different than the US. Our best selling cars are always compacts (Civic, Mazda3, etc). Best selling cars are almost always mid-size in the US (Camry, Accord, etc).

Who knows how much of that difference is economic vs. cultural.
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Old 05-11-2011, 06:23 PM   #330 (permalink)
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Quote:
Originally Posted by jamesqf View Post
OK, here's an example that I think is about as non-subjective and non-political as possible: health. Up until about the '60s or so, overall public health was on an upward curve. A lot of really serious diseases had been eliminated by vaccinations (I'm old enough to remember a couple of older kids in my school who'd had polio, and walked with crutches & leg braces) and improved diet & sanitation.

Nowadays the curve has flattened, if not actually started downwards. The health care system seems barely able to keep up with the current level of lifestyle diseases, and that only by offloading a great part of the cost on to the healthy. A few minutes observing bodies at e.g. the local WalMart suggests that there's going to be a major increase in these diseases in the next few decades. On the plus side, the only major advance in the past few decades has been anti-smoking campaigns.
Lifestyle is IMO the biggest one of them all : Wal Mart is the king of obese customers, I think.
And look at the childhood obesity we have now; what we considered a fat kid on the playground 30 years ago today is almost thin now.....diabetes is coming up at alarming rates in kids.

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