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Elon Musk

Discussion in 'Tesla, Inc.' started by graham, Nov 5, 2008.

  1. AZ Desert Driver

    AZ Desert Driver Rare combination

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    I just read "Thanks for the Fishes" and extracted the term "Pretzel logic". I'm keeping that one. I also watched several of Hans Rosling lectures. Applying pretzel logic to Hans would not be fair, but perhaps telling. I want to argue against his claim that the earth can sustain 10 billion souls - and will get there soon and stop growing. My pretzel logic says dictators and rebels will alter the Rosling models and will reset the clock with violence, and that this Armageddon is close at hand, and at a scale that even space traveling dolphins cannot escape. I contend that my investment in Elons electric car and solar roof wont see a payout, or move the needle in populations or future violence.
     
  2. wdolson

    wdolson Active Member

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    I agree that 10 billion is too many people.

    A nuclear war would change population more than any war in history, but conventional wars don't tend to reduce world population by much. WW II was the bloodiest war in history, but it was just a small hiccup in world population growth. The post war baby boom erased the losses and then some in almost no time. World population growth was so strong that the totals for the world grew until 1943 or 1944 and only had a slight dip back to early 1940s levels in late 1945.

    War can be very devastating to individual regions' populations. The western USSR took staggering losses in the war and so did Poland. Germany didn't fare very well either.

    Disease thins the population much more thoroughly than war does. Probably because disease hits women just as hard as men and even in modern conventional war, men tend to die in larger numbers than women (though civilian casualties can be a lot higher).

    Modern medicine may not be able to cure all disease, but it is very effective at containing outbreaks and nursing the sick so secondary infections are less common. The ebola outbreak a couple of years ago got more of a foothold than they usually do because the World Health Organization was in a depleted state and couldn't respond as quickly as they usually do. But even at that once they got going the outbreak was contained and ended in a few months.

    Humans are outstripping the world's ability to support us. We have badly over fished and polluted the oceans to a point ecosystems are collapsing. I found an article I read a few years ago that I found terrifying:
    The ocean is broken

    People in he developed world can beat themselves up about this, but they aren't the major culprits. I heard a story on NPR last week about plastic in the world's oceans. 88-95% of it comes from 10 rivers, 8 of them in Asia and the other two in Africa:
    95% of plastic in oceans comes from just ten rivers | Daily Mail Online
    Scientists trace path of inland plastic pollution from rivers to ocean

    Getting enough to eat in a lot of countries is so difficult, people who have access to the oceans are going out and getting whatever they can. Eating ocean fish is a luxury for people in North America and Europe, but it's a necessity in a lot of parts of the world where there is little else to eat.

    Add to this China and India's massive dependence on limited ground water to grow food and you have a ticking food time bomb.

    If food production collapses in some parts of the world, everyone will feel it. China will have to buy a lot of its food and that would probably mean higher prices in North America, but probably not much of a caloric reduction for most. It would be felt hardest in Asia and Africa.

    Than as the populations starve on levels never seen before, the weakened population will be hit with some kind of disease outbreak. It could be something basic and easily treated in the developed world like the common flu, but with a large, concentrated population already weakened by starvation, it could cut through the population like a buzz saw.

    There may be some regional wars over resources, but there will be large regions of haves and large regions of have nots and the have nots will largely have to travel long distances to get to the have regions. It means pressure on Europe's borders, but most of the other regions with enough food will also have the benefit of being mostly if not completely surrounded by large oceans like Australia/NZ and North America.

    There would be little point for a starving country in Asia or Africa to go to war with their neighbor because their neighbor is probably staving too.

    There has been a lot of hand wringing about CO2 in the atmosphere and what impact that may have on the climate, but I see lack of fresh water and damage to the oceans as far worse. Geologically, we are in a very cold period right now. World temps are warmer now than during the last glacial period, but we are in a small window of reduced ice in the middle of an ice age. For most of Earth's history CO2 levels and world temperatures have been much higher than they are now. Only a few million years ago the Caribbean extended up to Montana. Montana has a lot of coal because of the forests on the edge of the sea that were buried over millions and millions of years.

    Rising sea levels would be bad short term for coastal cities and it would be a disaster, but compared to the oceans dying or a continent with more than 1/4 the world's population not being able to feed itself, it's a speed bump.

    The biggest problems in the world right now are due to overpopulation stripping the resources of the planet too quickly, but nobody wants to address them because the only short term solutions are horrific.
     
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  3. AZ Desert Driver

    AZ Desert Driver Rare combination

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    I think you might be channeling Rosling. Complicated, convoluted topics distilled into just a few (terrifying) paragraphs. Good job.
    Now - what to do with this information? Shall I just pull the covers over my head and wait for the boggy man to knock? Shall I whistle past the graveyard and go about life while driving a nice car and chatting with scholars?
    For my personal piece of mind - I cannot watch the nightly news. So many stories of ugly behavior that I'm sure the boggy man is next door.
    I have been shot in a war zone and have no desire to fight that type of fight again. I'm glad others see the challenges ahead and have the will to forge ahead. I'm too fat and lazy to fight anymore. I just want to whistle .
     
  4. wdolson

    wdolson Active Member

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    We live in an era where every disaster in the world can be seen in our living rooms as it happens on giant TVs with surround sound. We've had a lot of disasters over the time humans have been on Earth and some staggeringly large ones before we were here.

    Back when life was more local, we might hear some of the big news that happened a long ways away, but it was abstracted by months if not years and could only be told verbally. Many in Asia heard about the Black Death's impact on Europe, and Europe knew about Ghangis Khan, but the people of the New World never heard about them until long after everyone involved was long gone from this world.

    Some years ago I went to a talk by Richard Brodie who was one of the creators of Microsoft Word. He went on to write a book about memes and how they can hurt us called Virus of the Mind.
    https://www.amazon.com/Virus-Mind-New-Science-Meme/dp/1401924697/ref=sr_1_1?ie=UTF8&qid=1515485874&sr=8-1&keywords=virus+of+the+mind

    It's a good book to remind ourselves that just because we can see those things happening in real time on the other end of the world, it doesn't mean it's going to get us. He spends a chapter telling a story about how news can mess with our minds. It's been out a while so there are plenty of used copies available.

    I find reminding myself of the book helps keep the world in perspective. I try to do what I can and try to keep the rest an intellectual exercise. At least until the proverbial excrement hits the rotating device. Doing what we can to switch to renewable energy sources is a can't hurt and might help thing. Pushing the technology along could end up helping develop some technologies that may help bring some relief if the worst happens.
     
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  5. AZ Desert Driver

    AZ Desert Driver Rare combination

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    I have ways to make water usable. I can make sea water drinkable. I can make muddy water drinkable, even if the mud is radioactive and full of viruses and bacteria. Making small quantities for drinking (even on City scale) is not a problem. Making large quantities for irrigation - is possible, but one needs to be smart to make it affordable. Making FOOD is a whole different problem -one that I have only a tangential influence on. Widespread panic and the Tesla delivery trucks with my canned food may not arrive on time.
    My Granddad use to say "we wont have any fuel supply problems, we have a pipeline". I could say my local Safeway may be out of radishes, but there is other stuff down the isle. If one limits the view as to how far the panic spreads, and how fast.
    I will do some things to survive. Weeklong stockpile of food, but not yearlong prepper level. I will lock my door but not build a safe-thick entry. I will ration my supply to my family, but would not shoot my neighbor who asks for a cup of sugar. I am putting solar panels on my roof to cut down on increases in monthly bills, but not exclude using the grid.
    It is easy to turn off the TV and pretend that the troubles of others don't/wont affect my lifestyle. Is the obverse true? Will my lifestyle hurt others? How far does the butterfly affect really go? Is driving Elon's cutting edge electric car making a measurable difference?
     
  6. wdolson

    wdolson Active Member

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    There may be some who think the end if nigh here in the US, but the US grows a lot more food than it needs and is one of the world's biggest exporters. It takes time but people can grow their own food too. We might see something akin to victory gardens from WW II as people are encouraged to grow their own food so more can be exported.

    The push for renewable energy is pushing down the cost of solar. That could be a boon when China and India need to big large water desalinization plants, though it will only help them a bit building the pipelines necessary to move the water inland (the pumps can be solar powered). If China does run out of water and becomes unable to grow enough food for a few years, they do have the money to buy it on the world food market and to fund the massive infrastructure projects necessary to produce clean water. But their buying up all the food would leave poorer Asian and African countries with none.

    Nobody has ever done large scale desalinization before. I think Saudi Arabia does the most. If China is desalinating enough water to grow food for 1 billion people, that could leave the coastal areas around the plants much saltier than the entire ocean. Ultimately it wouldn't be a problem for the entire ocean, humans can't take enough water out of the oceans to make the entire ocean measurably saltier, but it could affect local spots of ocean. It may not be a problem, but we probably should be testing that now.

    When the planes flew into the towers on 9/11, I wasn't worried about Muslim terrorists, I was more worried about the emotional reactions and how politicians would exploit them. The US made some very poor decisions after that which still haunt us today. I'm more concerned about what politicians might do to us because people are afraid than the actual threats to the US.

    China running out of fresh water is a tragedy and a crisis for them and it will ripple to smaller economies around the world, but at worst an inconvenience for the US people and probably good for the US economy. Not only will China be buying more US exports, but a lot of Chinese industry will probably have to shut down because most manufacturing processes use more water per acre of factory than the most water intensive crops. Manufacturing of some things will likely move to other developing countries, but the US has a lot of idle factories and US industries can bring manufacturing home.

    For the world, it would either be a very personal tragedy, or one experienced viscerally on TV. The generation that goes through it would probably all have collective PTSD. However, the long term for the world might be a good thing. If we maintain a replacement birth rate or a bit lower coming out of it, world population could stabilize at a lower level then it is now, which would put less strain on world resources and would help a lot of the world's problems.

    The Black Death was a horror show for the generations that lived through it, but when it ended, it opened the door to the Renaissance which propelled Europe to dominate the world. European culture still dominates the world today, people of European ancestry dominate three continents (Europe, Australia, and North America) and have a strong genetic component to a third (South America). The world calendar is European, the de-facto world language is European, and most of the world's non-European countries have been colonized by at least one European power at one time or other. The Renaissance also put the pedal to the metal on the growth of science, technology, and learning in general.

    It's had it's downsides, some quite bad, but the growth in learning has probably been more good than bad overall.
     
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  7. neroden

    neroden Happy Model S Owner

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    Psychological response -- wars cause population booms as people decide to have lots of babies.

    Yep, possibly because it consistently reduces the rate of infant survival.

    There is hope, because giving women birth control and empowering women (so they CAN use birth control, rather than being forced to bear children by abusive men) reliably brings the birth rate down below replacement level within a generation. Unfortunately there are misogynistic religious groups trying to force women to have lots of unwanted babies -- forced birthers.

    Ocean acidification (from CO2 in the atmosphere which dissolved as carbonic acid in the ocean) is the big one -- it's the one which caused the Great Dying. You can look it up. If it reaches the level where plankton can't form their shells, or the level where sulfur-metabolizing bacteria reach the surface of the ocean worldwide, we're toast -- that's the death of the ocean ecosystem, and then we die too.

    We are still some ways from that level of CO2.

    So if we stop putting CO2 in the atmosphere ASAP we should be able to avoid this catastrophe entirely. The other disasters are bad, but that's the one which drives humanity extinct.

    But if we keep burning fossil fuels, we'll get to that disaster and replicate the biggest mass extinction in geological history. So top priority is, avoid THAT disaster: if you're working to stop that one, you can feel righteous. Once that is clearly averted, we can work on dealing with the other stuff.
     
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  8. neroden

    neroden Happy Model S Owner

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    Depending on your definition, you might say it's pretty common among intelligent hunting species -- perhaps "practice" is a better word than "entertainment". It's more common among some than others though; and the practice of simply wasting the food after killing is quite rare, mostly being seen in cats (which are really gratuitously cruel and violent).

    Bottlenose dolphins are known for their gang rapes, which is also a pretty icky thing. Male bottlenose dolphins tend to sexually harass female human zookeepers, too, which is just weird.

    The really interesting intelligent creatures are the octopuses, because they are the only example of highly intelligent *non-social* creatures that we know of. They're very, very alien, having evolved on a very different line of descent from mammals.

    Social apex predators, like humans, are an ecological problem. Most stable ecosystems have a non-social apex predator which controls its own population through territoriality. If you don't, the predator messes up the system by, essentially, overfishing.
     
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  9. wdolson

    wdolson Active Member

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    At least in major wars with high death tolls.

    Those are factors, but even in fairly misogynistic cultures the birth rate is dropping. According to Hans Rosling the biggest correlation is between infant mortality and birthrate. Even in cultures that are very male dominated, men seem to be OK with 2 children if the chances of both kids making it to adulthood is high.

    My sister is a Geologist and I have done a fair bit of reading about Geology as a hobby. I'm well aware of the Permian Extinction and I think I mentioned it upthread. Comparing what humans are doing to the atmosphere with that is comparing a candle to a nuclear weapon, both are hot, but in very different ways.

    The Permian Extinction was caused by the Siberian Traps which was, outside the early years of this planet, probably the largest volcanic event in Earth's history. Definitely the biggest in the last 500 million years. It was a massive eruption that went on for around 1 million years. Before the eruptions ended, the lava flows covered 2.7 million miles (about 1/3 of Siberia) to thousands of feet thick in places.

    The amount of CO2 released into the atmosphere was 20X what we have today and what was even more damaging to the climate, the eruption also put huge amounts of SO2 into the atmosphere which turned into acid rain and acidified the oceans.

    We have no source of SO2 in the world right now that comes close to putting out the levels those volcanoes put out. Our collective CO2 output is much lower than the volcanoes produced too. I attached a chart of CO2 levels and world temperatures over the last 4.6 billion years. The spike in CO2 levels at the end of the Permian doesn't even show up because it was too short for this chart, but world temperatures were 5-6C warmer than today and remained that warm until very close to the present day.

    Geological_Timescale.jpg
    But one thing to note, at the beginning of the Industrial Age, world CO2 levels were at pretty close to their lowest in world history. Hundreds of millions of years of life, especially creatures that make shells from CO2 have locked away staggering amounts of CO2. Limestone is made up of this stuff and there are places where there are mountains of it.

    Humans could extinguish life on Earth, or set it back a billion years with a nuclear war, but the CO2 we're putting into the atmosphere cannot cause another Permian Extinction. There isn't enough of it locked away in fossil fuels to raise the CO2 levels that high. And even if we tried, we'd be extinct long before we were able to get CO2 levels that high. Or at minimum reduce our population through civilization collapse to a point where we aren't having an impact any longer.

    Geology has been studying climate longer than any other science and Earth's climate has fluctuated dramatically all on its own many times before us humans came along. Most Geologists I know (and I know a fair number) are skeptical about man-made global warming. Most consider that it is possible we're contributing, but it's also quite possible the Earth is just going through its normal changes.

    All of human history has existed in a very short bubble between ice events in the middle of an ice age. During that time there have been several times Earth was warmer than it is now. One was about 6000 BC when civilization started, another was during the Roman Empire (when Hannibal crossed the Alps he crossed some valleys that are impassible today because they have glaciers in them), and during the age of the Vikings Greenland's southern tip was warm enough for farming.

    When Europeans began to really knuckle down and study the world, the Earth was in the Little Ice Age. Sunspots were discovered around 1700 when the first solar observations were made but they were thought to be a one off phenomenon because none were seen for another 50-100 years as it was the beginning of the Little Ice Age and the sun's output dropped when it quit producing sunspots.

    1998 was the largest solar maximum on record and 11 years before that was the second largest. The last solar maximum was 3 years late (a pattern not seen since in hundreds of years) and the weakest solar maximum in a couple hundred years. Earth's magnetic field is also very unstable right now. The most unstable we've ever measured.

    While a lot of the Geologists I know are skeptical humans are completely responsible for the climate changing, they are all petroleum Geologists and many of them think we should be cutting back on our use of petroleum if nothing else because of pollution caused by the stuff and while we're not really running out, the easy to get stuff is already out of the ground and it's becoming increasingly more expensive to find and produce.

    And I do agree with them that we should be doing all we can to cut back on petroleum use. We already generate most of our electricity with something other than oil. That started after the 1973 oil crisis. Electric land vehicles are not only another way to cut back on oil use, but they are vastly superior forms of transportation when done correctly (like Tesla has done). Electrifying ships will be more difficult until batteries improve, though electronically controlled sails might be a way to reduce oil burning.

    Aircraft will be the last terrestrial transportation to be electrified. Batteries are heavy and too low an energy density to be feasible right now. Lighter weight batteries with higher charge densities will be needed before it becomes practical and we will still probably need to burn some kind of liquid to make jets work.
     
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  10. FlatSix911

    FlatSix911 918 Hybrid

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    Very interesting chart ... thanks for posting.
    [​IMG]
     
  11. FlatSix911

    FlatSix911 918 Hybrid

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    Back on topic ... How Tesla's Elon Musk could become the world's richest man without ever getting a paycheck
    .

    Elon Musk is already known for his ambitious bets, but the Tesla CEO is now gambling with his own net worth: Tesla announced Tuesday that it would pay Musk nothing for the next 10 years — no salary, bonus or stock — unless the electric car company nearly doubles in value. Before lauding Musk for his apparent selflessness, though, it’s worth noting that the billionaire, who has served as Tesla’s chairman since 2004 and as its CEO since 2008, has been getting along just fine despite never receiving a salary as long as he has been with the company. Indeed Musk, worth an estimated $21.5 billion, will once again refuse his annual paycheck of $56,000 — California minimum wage — in 2018 and the decade thereafter.

    Under the new payment plan, however, Musk could actually become much, much richer — and so could Tesla stockholders. To earn any compensation going forward, Musk must grow Tesla, whose current market capitalization is about $59 billion, to $100 billion in market cap, and also increase its revenues or adjusted earnings (before interest, taxes, depreciation and amortization, a.k.a. EBITDA) by at least 70%. That would satisfy the first milestone of the 12-level compensation ladder, allowing Musk to collect stock options worth an additional $1 billion.

    But Musk also has the opportunity to collect a significantly bigger windfall. If Tesla’s market value reaches $650 billion (an 11-fold increase) by 2028—and if the other financial measures multiply between 15 and 21 time s— Musk can keep all dozen tranches of stock options, netting him an additional $55.8 billion, according to the company.

    Musk’s real reward would be even greater. After all, the CEO is also Tesla’s largest shareholder, and if he hits all 12 performance milestones, the company calculates Musk would own as much as 28.3% of Tesla. With that large a stake of a $650 billion company, Musk’s net worth would surge to $184 billion in Tesla stock alone—potentially making him the richest person in the world. (Although Musk’s stake is unlikely to end up that large due to dilutive events, such as stock issuance to employees, the size of his current Tesla holdings would be enough to make him the richest person alive today.)
    [​IMG]
     
  12. malcolm

    malcolm Active Member

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  13. RobStark

    RobStark Well-Known Member

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  14. Ulmo

    Ulmo Active Member

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    Flamethrowers. Someone remind me why he's involved with Tesla?
     
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  15. BluestarE3

    BluestarE3 Active Member

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    A deep and abiding admiration for "Spaceballs". And without "Spaceballs", there would not be Insane, Ludicrous and Plaid modes for Tesla vehicles.
     
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  16. Ulmo

    Ulmo Active Member

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    #2116 Ulmo, Jan 28, 2018
    Last edited: Jan 28, 2018
    1. The people that are told not to procreate tend to be the smartest people most willing and able to fix those problems, and yet the worst people are not told to stop procreating, and they tend to get used to invade other countries as interlopers of various sorts. So the anti-birth approach has failed so far, to the point now that I am actively advocating telling the same peope who were told there are too many people to start having as many children as possible!
    2. We should have no more than about one family per decent climate hilltop, and almost no people in flat lands or bad climates, but first we have to solve how to select who is giving birth. We learned back in WWII and again with the Civil Rights Movement and the Globalist Era that the two extremes of trying that out (direct elimination of "bad" people by Hitler and indirect elimination of "bad" people by globalists) is wrong because the people chosing who must live and die are always wrong. I have no obvious solutions for this problem right now other than strong borders and laws, and the only way to have good laws is to have very few of them and have them be logical and decent (be out of the way of good things, make sense, be rememberable, etc.). Obviously, globalists hate good laws, so tend to dump on them by bloating them, ignoring them, and making them get in the way of everything and cause evil. The task of getting through both them and the problem of who decides is beyond daunting.
    3. Throughout my life I have believed that there is always an engineering point at which any particular happy and healthy level of population can be supported, however, there has been a tendancy to ignore that calculation and to overpopulate. See points 1 and 2.
    4. I think one reaction is to make available options to have people leave. However, setting up mirrors in space, heating up planetary cores, building magnetospheres and ionospheres, and releasing oxygen, water, and breathable air into atmosphere in places like Mars takes people that aren't willy nilly thumb twiddlers like we've all been forced to become here to be "polite" to each other and not "offend" anyone. There's even a rediculous law by those damn idiots making laws forbidding life on Mars! Can you believe the audacity of a group to make a law like that?!
    5. The better option in my opinion is making reasonable environmental laws and enforcing them. No more pollution. No more cutting down sempiviron forests, redwoods, etc. Some allowances made if you plant 10x more that will grow up to replace one, and you have to wait for them to grow up first, so you better live to about 300 years old to do it. Penalty of death if you violate. We need to protect our planet and its natural forests and gardens. There is no place like it in the solar system and likely too few like it in the galaxy. When we have evolved into immortal superhumans who can travel through space by mere thought, science and technology combined, we will still want to visit Earth for all of its natural beauties. If we come back and it is unbreathable air, paved lands that used to be forested, ugly buildings, ugly power lines, ugly landscaping, ugly farms, etc., then we have failed to make our planet a beautiful place for our future. But it won't just be our old planet we worry about: it will be our future competitors, other superhumans that look at us as unable to tend our own garden, unable to conserve our own health, and they similarly will not respect us. If we can show them that we can respect ourselves and our natural surroundings, they will see us as worth keeping, they will tend to want to follow our lead, and they will allow us to live. Otherwise, we will be the garbage we are making of our planet, and will be thrown out, and wanted to be forgotten.
    The only obvious thing to me is stop chopping down high quality forests, stop allowing pollution, and start getting rid of as many laws as possible, so that the ones left can be remembered and can make some logical sense. There has to be a mix of freedom and regulation, so for that to work, the regulation has to be as simple as possible. Otherwise, it has no point. If we can restore our nations to being able to do such things, then we can proceed to fixing the other issues at hand by setting minimum standards. I hate the fact that the Earth is one global place environmentally, but we have to enforce environmental laws worldwide, and quite frankly, the globalists are very against that, since they cut down forests, pollute the planet with overpopuation of the worst sort, litter everywhere, and burn toxic polluting fuels all the time.

    If ever anyone was bored, sitting at home, wondering what interesting thing to do with their lives, there's plenty in the above list to work on to make life interesting and fun. Unfortunately, trying to go work for Elon doesn't seem to be an available option for most of us who truly deeply care about our future, and it's questionable how much effect that would even have since he's already got his gig producing on its slow meandering path. We should find our own things to fix so that we can make more improvement than mere hope and change.
     
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  17. Ulmo

    Ulmo Active Member

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    Thank you for explaining that. Once again, I had no idea, due to some particular artistic difference of interest.

    (I have no interest in the color Gold (I much prefer silver, blue, green, white, and purple), yet I like Trump, and similarly I have no interest in the kitsch scifi Elon likes (I prefer SG, B5, STTNG, etc.), yet I like a lot of the accomplishments he's been a part of and helped spur. I am condemned to never have friends that are like me, apparently.)
     
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  18. S'toon

    S'toon Knows where his towel is

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    Depends on your definition of kitsch. To me, ST whatever is kitsch. I much preferred B5. It was way more "realistic."

    Liking sci fi doesn't mean you can't like sci fi humour.
     
  19. S'toon

    S'toon Knows where his towel is

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    OK, not so much an Elon Musk story, but an Elon Musk's mother story.
    Full article at:
    The 69-year-old still working the catwalk
     
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  20. FlatSix911

    FlatSix911 918 Hybrid

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    Just received this infographic email from Squaw Valley, USA ski resort :cool:

    State-of-the-art battery storage In Partnership with Liberty Utilities and Tesla

    Today we are excited to announce the Olympic Valley Microgrid Project proposal.

    In conjunction with our intent to be using 100% renewable energy as early as December 2018, we are partnering with Liberty Utilities and Tesla to propose a state-of-the-art battery storage project located adjacent to our Gold Coast lodge. This project will create a new way to store surplus energy and deliver that energy to the grid. It also provides additional flexibility to the power grid for integrating more renewable energy sources in the future.



    upload_2018-2-5_19-22-47.png
     
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