Thursday, September 13, 2012

Recent reading

Storms of My Grandchildren: The Truth about the Coming Climate Catastrophe and Our Last Chance to Save Humanity by James Hansen
Once large sea level rise begins to devastate coastal cities around the world, creating hundreds of millions of refugees, there may be a breakdown of global governance. But regardless of that, if ocean circulation changes, such that warmer Pacific Ocean water begins sinking to the ocean floor and melting methane hydrates, there will be no plausible way for humans to reverse that change of ocean circulation. While we can’t predict the details of short-term human history, changes will be momentous. China, despite its growing economic power, will have great difficulties as hundreds of millions of Chinese are displaced by rising seas. With the submersion of Florida and coastal cities, the United States may be equally stressed. 

 Jack Nicholson: The Playboy Interviews (50 Years of the Playboy Interview) by Jack Nicholson, Playboy
I was also part of a generation that was raised on cool jazz and Jack Kerouac, and we walked around in corduroys and turtlenecks talking about Camus and Sartre and existentialism and what going on the road would be like. We stayed up all night and slept till three in the afternoon. We were among the few people around seeing European pictures. We went to Dylan’s and Ravi Shankar’s early concerts. We smoked a lot of dope, usually in the toilet or out in the backyard or driveway, ’cause it wasn’t cool to do it in public. Zen was coming in, so we knew about Alan Watts. Most of us had been fortunate chronologically; we hadn’t had to go to war. And we were probably among the first group of people who weren’t buying the American dream.

 The Myth of American Exceptionalism by Mr Godfrey Hodgson
American Exceptionalism. The core of that belief is the idea that the United States is not just the richest and most powerful of the world's more than two hundred states but is also politically and morally exceptional. Exceptionalists minimize the contributions of other nations and cultures to the rule of law and to the evolution of political democracy.

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