Links for the Week — September 2, 2006

information maps
Sample information map from International Networks Archive.

A deep green tinge to this week’s two dozen links.

Environment and Energy:

Toronto Home Buyers Offered New Green Options: Mattamy Homes in Toronto is surveying home-buyers to see how much they are willing to pay for 50 potential green options on their homes, including solar panels, rooftop wind turbines, bamboo floors, computer-driven thermostats, natural paint and water heat-recovery equipment. The survey results will determine which options will be offered, and may even become standard in the future. Thanks to PURE for the link.

Comprehensive Environmental News Portal: Ecological Internet integrates six thematic environmental portals through a single site. All the bad news you can handle, available in one place.

What You Can Do to Help: Wendy Richardson offers 365 simple ways to reduce your impact on the environment.

How to Run the World Like Nature: Rules for stewardship of complex systems, taken from nature, compiled in an extraordinary article on natural governance by Catherine Burton. Bioregionalism, permaculture, and community-based self-management are key underlying principles. Thanks to IshCon‘s Matthew J for the link.

Pipeline Corrosion: Another Oil Crisis Precipitator: “The oil industry is not revealing the true extent of pipeline corrosion that could harm production seriously. According to Richard Pike, head of the Britain’Äôs Royal Society of Chemistry, ‘people are keeping this quiet and just getting on with it because there is an awful risk that the outside world will overreact’.” Meanwhile ExxonMobil and the rest of the oil oligopoly are bullying Canadian governments to approve the Mackenzie Valley pipeline, an ecological disaster in the making, quickly and expediently or they’ll take their ball and go home.

Responsible Shopping Reference: Just a reminder that Responsible Shopper is one of the best sites for researching which companies to boycott.

The Global Warming Denial Lobby: How the cynical sleazy money-mongers who profit from obfuscating the truth about global warming operate. And who’s paying them to lie. Thanks to DeSmogBlog for the links.

Sixteen Ways to Help Your Community Prepare for Peak Oil: A great article from Randy White in Energy Bulletin. Thanks to David Parkinson for the link and the one that follows. My favourite from the list: “Match elderly citizens that survived the Great Depression with today’s youth leaders.

Information Maps Visualize Ecological Impacts: A great series of visualizations from International Networks Archive capture ecological complexity in a single picture. Example reproduced above.

Global Warming in Ten Seconds, Not Ten Thousand Years: New evidence suggests tipping points can bring about precipitous climate change with astonishing speed. Thanks to Dale Asberry for the link and the one that follows.

The HumanCar: The ultimate solution to transportation in the age of the End of Oil?

Politics & Economics:

The US Economy: Profits Without People: The NYT explains that wages are becoming a less and less significant part of the US economy, and that US ‘profits’ and ‘productivity’ (i.e. margins), and ROI to executives and shareholders are now rising while real wages continue to decline. Anyone see anything wrong with this picture?

Ten Reasons to Boycott the Beijing Olympics: From China-Watchers CSN.

Why the Bushies’ Social Security and Tax Cut Strategies Just Make Things Worse: The brilliant and innovative Lee Arnold has put his clever and damning ecolanguage visualizations debunking the neocon social security and tax cut strategies on YouTube.

Olbermann Eviscerates Rumsfeld: Just watch this stirring editorial (via YouTube) revealing Rumsfeld’s deranged and dangerous perception of reality and how he gets the lessons of ‘fascism’ exactly backwards. Thanks to Dale Asberry for the link and the one that follows.

Too Late for Empire: An articulate explanation from Jon Schell in The Nation of why asynchronicity has resulted in a world where empire is no longer possible, where no one is in control, and the myth of the existence of real superpowers is as dangerous as any weapon of mass destruction.

Hide and Seek: Pictures from Iraq: Also from YouTube, Imogen Heap’s great song is illustrated with stirring pictures of what Bush hath wrought.


A Story of Corporate Disservice: Shannon Clark’s fascinating tale of a moving-day nightmare explains why big corporations are inherently incapable of rendering the quality of customer service that entrepreneurs can.

Michael Schrage gets Customer Co-Development: Innovation guru Schrage explains “The business goal is not to make a profit by selling internal techniques; it’Äôs to alter the innovation ecosystem, making it easier, safer, and more advantageous for suppliers and customers to take a chance on one another’Äôs work ’Äî and to learn far more about each other, and themselves, in the bargain.”


How Stress Cripples the Brain: Scientist Liz Gould has discovered that stress (poverty, overcrowding, violence, pollution) damages the brain and that only in healthy, natural environments do we (and all creatures) grow new neurons. Another vicious (or virtuous) cycle. Thanks to Yule Heibel for the link.

Kerala Liberates Itself from Microsoft: The progressive, healthy and prosperous Indian state of Kerala is replacing MS products with free software.

The ‘Dog Whisperer’s’ Dangerous Myths: The hugely popular animal behaviourist Cesar Millan has reintroduced the unhealthy and regressive animal training myth that our fellow creatures respond better to bullying and power than to kindness and positive reinforcement.

George Orwell’s Essays: A wonderful online collection of writings from a guy a century ahead of his time. Thanks to Drew Terry for the link. Start with Politics and the English Language and learn why’values’ has always been a meaningless and generally misused term.

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3 Responses to Links for the Week — September 2, 2006

  1. ob fusc says:

    Really fantastic links, thanks!! It sounds like Catherine Burton had a vision of the internet?? There were two images superimposing themselves. One image revealed a huge lit-up board displaying an enormous representation of the planet. Computer data banks provided inventories of populations and their needs as well as existing resources (energy, food, water, medical supplies, education ) to meet these basic needs. and…At another point in the image a national debate was occurring in terms of the future of nuclear weapons. This time, the debate was conducted again over television, with local communities discussing the various aspects of the issue and its effects on other issues (information was made available from the life accountability communications center showing the various relationships and consequences of using nuclear arms). Results were either telephoned in or relayed through computer telecommunications capacities.Fascinating – anyway thank you once again.

  2. Just to say thanks for the effort you put in here, even when ill — I really appreciate the style and content of your posts.

  3. Abbas Abedi says:

    I love how thoroughly you research your posts.

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