Linked by snydeq on Thu 15th Dec 2011 21:17 UTC
In the News A new study from UCSB finds significant increases in businesses hiring organized shills to push products online. These 'malicious crowd-sourcing systems' enlist dozens or hundreds of professional shills to orchestrate mass account creation, generate bogus ratings, and post canned cut-and-paste positive reviews -- with each 'task' costing between 13 and 70 cents. 'Unscrupulous crowd-sourcing sites, coupled with international payment systems, have enabled a burgeoning crowdturfing market that targets U.S. websites, but is fueled by a global workforce.'
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RE[2]: shilling
by transputer_guy on Fri 16th Dec 2011 06:17 UTC in reply to "RE: shilling"
transputer_guy
Member since:
2005-07-08

Since you brought up a political theme I will go there.

I have this theory that seems to be borne out by evidence all around the web and on blog comments.

Greenpeace activists hate nuclear tech and agree about AGW, thinking solar panels will save the world one photon at a time. Another litmus test here. They trust science more or less but not evil businesses.

The primary AGW websites are factually accurate but also very anti nuclear even though Thorium LFTR has no real waste to speak of, it is still evil.

Conservatives like nuclear power but don't believe in AGW, that is a litmus test. Many of these don't trust scientists (they must all be liberals living rich off the gov) but they do trust business to do the right thing and develop the right products. Since greens like solar it must be wrong and ergo nuclear is right.

The main anti AGW is WhatsUpWithThat plus 100s of other Heartland Institute fronts with misleading data that attacks the science, and yet they all support nuclear with open arms esp Thorium LFTR, its like a no brainer.

Conundrum, who will save the world, greens or cons?

As an engineer that uses science and economic arguments I must support both nuclear and AGW so it is complicated.

There is no point in arguing about AGW with cons since they already support nuclear.

Arguing with greens over nuclear is really tough, it is all based on wishful thinking and anti nuke science, they will not look at the real numbers and rely on other antis for more misinformation.

I may have to vote solely on who is most likely to push nuclear forward.

Reply Parent Score: 1

RE[3]: shilling
by subsider34 on Fri 16th Dec 2011 09:04 in reply to "RE[2]: shilling"
subsider34 Member since:
2010-11-08

Check out AmericansElect.org they're trying to form a new nationwide party using crowd sourced values.

Edited 2011-12-16 09:05 UTC

Reply Parent Score: 1

RE[4]: shilling
by zima on Thu 22nd Dec 2011 21:52 in reply to "RE[3]: shilling"
zima Member since:
2005-07-06

Or tyranny of the masses...

(no, but really, it's basically what we have, anyway; systems of governance as a whole largely also reflect their societies - from where the people in administrations would come from?)

Reply Parent Score: 2

RE[3]: shilling
by Neolander on Fri 16th Dec 2011 09:34 in reply to "RE[2]: shilling"
Neolander Member since:
2010-03-08

I'm with you on this one ;)

I think there are enough proofs of global warming right now to stop arguing with the few remaining shills of the oil industry. If they stop getting people's attention, they should naturally disappear.

However, I am also of the opinion that much of the discussion on nuclear power is blinded by misinformation on both side. Between people who are afraid of the natural radioactivity of potatoes and people who pretend that there's nothing to change in the way we currently operate nuclear power plants, it's hard to form a relatively objective opinion on the exact advantages and drawbacks of the technology.

And that's speaking from France, which is pretty much the home country of nuclear power -- a reign which has been disputed ever since the Chernobyl politics and media manipulation, but without anyone proposing a serious alternative.

Edited 2011-12-16 09:35 UTC

Reply Parent Score: 2

RE[4]: shilling
by transputer_guy on Sat 17th Dec 2011 15:39 in reply to "RE[3]: shilling"
transputer_guy Member since:
2005-07-08

France is also a nuclear weapons state.

You are right, the pluses are obvious, low cost power, avoidance of CO2, not much foreign dependance except on friendly Australia. Its base load and stable.

The minuses include the Pu239 that comes out of Uranium fission reactions, it is nasty and as the greens remind us has 20k year half life, so even 100k years still leaves it hot and deadly poisonous.

But there is a really good alternative in Thorium in the Liquid Fluoride Thorium Reactor or LFTR (Lifter) named after the god of war Thor ironically. It was invented by the same guy that invented the current PWR reactor, Alvin Weinberg a nuclear chemist.

Pluses, 4* more Th232 than U238 and it burns almost 100% into lighter valuable elements. U238 only burns about 1-5% in the once through cycle so almost all the waste is in fact unspent U238 fuel mixed with deadly Pu239 and useless Pu240 and other waste that needs a complex future breeder reactor. That won't likely ever happen anywhere.

The Thorium LFTR produces no Pu (okay 10000 less) in the waste so it decays to background in 300 yrs and this can be exploited for rare earths and radio medical isotopes worth their weight in gold in just 5 years.

Thorium is very simple to process into stable fluoride salts, 1 ton of metal per year produces 1GW continuous power for 1M homes with 1 ton of simple waste with very short decays.

The LFTR is intrinsically safe, if it overheats it melts a safety plug and shuts down, no backup needed. It is the ultimate passive design and it also follows load.

With the efficiency gained, Thorium allows for 100 times the total energy capacity of Uranium, enough for 10B people for 10000 years. Uranium can only power the worlds richest countries with a hidden agenda for weapons Pu.

The LFTR is also an excellent way to dispose of the current stock of unspent fuels, it eats them in the process of burning Thorium, that is how we get rid of the Pu waste.

So why do we use Uranium, simple, the US, UK, France, Israel, Russia, China, NKorea and Iran want the Pu for weapons and Thorium was killed off by Nixon because it is totally useless for weapons.

Reply Parent Score: 2

RE[3]: shilling
by David on Fri 16th Dec 2011 16:15 in reply to "RE[2]: shilling"
David Member since:
1997-10-01

You've identified a serious schism in the environmentalist community. The old guard still reflexively opposes nuclear power because there's a long and glorious history of opposing nuclear power, and a lot of that is tied up in the fact that nuclear power was always a fig leaf for nuclear weapons (and still is, e.g. Iran). This mindset goes way back to before cimate change was even on the radar.

But there's been an insurgency that's led by a group of "realists" who realize that we're never going to cut back on our energy use, that solar is not going to cut it anytime soon, and that when facing the lesser of two evils, they'll pick new nuclear tech over doing nothing and rolling the dice with climate change. And one of the founders of Greenpeace is in this camp: http://www.wired.com/science/planetearth/news/2007/11/moore_qa

It's an interesting philosophical struggle. I myself have come over, with trepidation, into the realist camp.

Reply Parent Score: 1

RE[3]: shilling
by zima on Thu 22nd Dec 2011 23:38 in reply to "RE[2]: shilling"
zima Member since:
2005-07-06

I have this theory that seems to be borne out by evidence all around the web and on blog comments.

Which is still an incredibly filtered view, as far as drawing such clear demarcation lines goes - not the least just because of, say, linguistic barriers; or how little you can really see ...and what you expect to see (a few cognitive biases dealing with this one)

Overall, it's not so clear, not so simple (it never is in the real world). Few points...

Greenpeace is not the end of it; heck, I have one fairly strong ~local group of environmentalists who absolutely support nuclear - they (and I, many benefits all around, also 'immediate' local ~societal ones) wouldn't mind living in a backyard of one, and are among the first to lament the colossal waste of one abortive attempt http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/┼╗arnowiec_Nuclear_Power_Plant ...but we also see the sensibility in diversifying - solar panels in the apparently implied meaning of photovoltaics (but also in general) are not the only thing BTW, and Sahara is a big chunk of essentially wasted space.


Conserves absolutely hate regulation that must come with nuclear, the larger structural model of industrial activities that they love could be quite literally disastrous here. Distrust of non-passionate science generally can reflect very bad on long-term planning.

And it's not hard to find overall too much cult in that direction, as well (heck, I've stumbled on people essentially treating nuclear like self-sustaining organism, the more the better, ultimately not seeing a problem of essentially paving over the planet with industrial parks, quarries, etc. ...it takes way too much effort to 'miraculously' make such hard cases less overboard)


Or - NVM specifics of Fukushima, what's important is that supporters counted it among the shining examples of nuclear (not specifically of course, but among that group) - while, in recent time, it came out that there were concerns about the design, about the flaws, ignored for FOUR DECADES.
And remember how the discussion went when Fukushima was unfolding? "OK, so we have a bit of a situation, n happened, but not n+1" - a day to few later, and we had "OK, so n+2 happened, but not n+3" ...repeat few times.
WTH? This is far for breeding trust.

Then comes the validity of claims about, say, thorium reactors ...but the thing is, VERY similar claims were made about the present bunch of reactors.


And you're doing yourself something at least on the level of what you accuse others of... you remember about the part of studies which suggest the cycle to be viable, not problematic, "no real waste to speak of" (might be not so straightforward... http://lpsc.in2p3.fr/gpr/english/NEWNRW/NEWNRW.html#tex2html14 )
Now, thorium might very well have its place, but it also won't be the whole solution, we need a group of them.


People in general are a bit distanced about nuclear (thorium is essentially the same tech) after that, not "greens" (quite a few of those supporting nuclear like I mentioned; why do you have to think there's only Greenpeace, to 'diminish' criticism? Criticism is something absolutely essential with something like nuclear, and the investments it requires).

Oh, and ultimately, nuclear industry mostly just wants to ride on the investments they already made.



Overall cons don't support nuclear per se, mostly continuing burning of "dinosaurs" (really, you want to depend on people who can suddenly flip at "nuclear is bad because it must be regulated by big and scary gov"? ...well, maybe, how they don't see govs being in direct relations with big businesses is another issue).
They're more likely to support drilling in the Arctic (conveniently, we're on our way to getting rid of that pesky ice) and, quite soon, in the Antarctic (here it will take few thousand years of course, but the gradual uncovering of perks will also do)

Or maybe, in your place, there's also a typical effect of what is at the core of conservatism - remembering past as better than it was (so, also, the euphoria about nuclear from half a century ago ...which was crazy, when you think what people did); that could be another factor, another way to see it.

Around here, cons just want to continue burning coal (often brown coal at that...), and are very much against nuclear (that's what the evil commies do, vide: Czernobyl they sprayed us with! Also, that's the way EU multinational interests will get hold of us! Coal is "our gold" / and of course AGW is all lies, to make possible the encroachment of foreign nuclear industry and EU interests in general)



Most importantly, it is not either-or. Both solar (of many kinds, not only "solar panels" which entrenched itself as meaning "photovoltaics") and nuclear have their place, among many more.
And supposedly, this will be the century of biochemistry ...getting a hold of proper ~'synthetic photosynthesis' could largely do the trick, once we'll master it our energy problems could be largely over (but the thing is, this or nuclear won't do much without populations recognising conspicuous consumption, and what is way into "good enough" and sane)
You forget about solutions proven to work nicely (solar water heaters adoption in Israel or Cyprus for example - and that's in countries with quite high levels of urbanization, moderate levels of urban sprawl; or more sensible housing designs in general - something which usually goes by the name of passive house, or elements of it at least)
While the beauty with many renewable sources is that you can choose an appropriate mix (not only them in that mix of course, also nuclear for example; but that's also) - which is greatly assisted by how many can coexist with people easily, you can essentially live under solar or wind plant


What we need to primarily do is to not focus on any one wundersolution, that's what largely got us into this mess in the first place (in the past, sequentially: "wood / peat / coal / oil / nuclear will solve the problem of energy, promise!"). Thorium will get its chance if its worth anything, there are enough nuclear research centres exploring (because BTW it's not really something individuals can influence, but large teams and investments).
Problem is, people (naturally...) miss larger picture, so many small things which, collectively, would make a significant contribution. Well, not really a problem, there are enough people and efforts in most directions ...but don't lament them (& don't be overenthusiastic about your chosen darling), it's a good thing




But it is really irrelevant in the end, IMHO we will exhaust (and largely emit to atmosphere) virtually all oil reserves.
Overall, either way, we will 'borgify' this planet eventually (would be really "funny" with http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Medea_Hypothesis ), I think it's pretty much inevitable ...we might be able to moderate the rates somewhat, giving us better chances (but still by no means a guarantee) to adapt without much turmoil.
Maybe that's the solution to Fermi paradox...

Reply Parent Score: 2