Monday, July 17, 2006

Tuna Becomes Extinct in the Med

For those who have been following the issue, this latest is no surprise: bluefin tuna in the Mediterranean, previously numerous enough to constitute a tourist attraction, are down 80% and expected to become extinct due to overfishing. The ultimate cause, as well, is no surprise to faithful readers or those who are familiar with Dr. Bartlett's work: the sheer weight of human populations naturally produces this result (along with many others; the visibility of the vanishing tuna is why this article appears; smaller, yet still compelling examples can easily be found). What Chaos finds depressing about this is the inevitability: population control will not take hold in time for species extinction, wildlife habitat destruction, arable land desertification, pollution of air water and soil, human conflict and dieoff.

Friday, July 14, 2006

Entropy Rules in the Middle East

(Sigh) Where to begin? On a day when the most volatile region of the world is aflame with ancient and contemporary hatred, bombs, rockets and machine gun fire aplenty, perhaps it is appropriate to revisit that 'bottomless catastrophe,' Iraq. Courtesy of The London Times, a viewpoint readers in the Empire aren't likely to encounter, it seems that residents of the city of Baghdad have givnen up the struggle and are streaming out of the country in droves (well, more like 800,000, creating the largest group of refugees on the planet). The relentless sectarian warfare defies American and Iraqi government efforts at "reconciliation," a concept foreign to religious zealots.

Wednesday, July 12, 2006

American Values #4: We Have No Friends, Anymore

Yes, it's true: Americans now have fewer friends than 20 years ago. A study published in American Sociology Review finds that close friends are down, and people who have no one to confide in are up to the tune of 25%. For those who believe that the country will soon face major challenges in energy and resource depletion, this trend is not encouraging. Perhaps friends in other countries will fill the breach? Think again, as the Empire's image continues to fall worldwide. Even staunch supporters like Japan have rethought their previously sympathetic position. Ich bein ein berliner, indeed.