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Absinthe spoons go political

Sepulchritude Forum » The Absinthe Forum Archive thru January 2003 » Strictly Absinthe & Collectibles » Absinthe spoons go political « Previous Next »

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Archive through August 28, 2002Perruche_Verte25 8-28-02  4:31 pm
Archive through August 30, 2002Greenmeanie25 8-30-02  9:20 am
Archive through September 01, 2002Traineraz25 9-1-02  7:51 pm
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Posted on Wednesday, September 4, 2002 - 9:05 pm:   Edit PostPrint Post

Funny because I was joking with someone today that where I stay is very similar to green acres. No pigs though, only cows, corn and country folk. Rural wasteland.
Posted on Wednesday, September 4, 2002 - 9:35 am:   Edit PostPrint Post

"New York is where I'd razsah stay! I get allergic smelling hay!"
Posted on Tuesday, September 3, 2002 - 5:38 pm:   Edit PostPrint Post

Substitute 'swampy sand bar' for 'desert', and I live in the same kind of endlessly sprawling suburby hell in Jacksonville, FL. If there were a contest, I'd submit 'Jax' as the least culturally interesting big city in America. I've never seen so many strip malls, big boxes, and neverending soulless housing developments. Unfortunately, I have to live here for a year or two. To me, sprawling southern cities with low population density and suburbs in general are a soulless auto-centric nowhere. Give me a dense northern city, the downtown area of a college town, or something truly rural. I grew up in one of the 'nicest' suburbs in America, in Littleton, CO. My friends and I were all nihilist drug fiends - there was no other choice. A few years after I blew town, they built Columbine High School...
Posted on Tuesday, September 3, 2002 - 1:15 pm:   Edit PostPrint Post

BC -

People liking the 'burbs is all well and good. I grew up in a suburb town outside Syracuse, NY. It had safer parks, better schools, better housing stock. It was also a town which had existed for well over 100 years before the big housing boom hit; the parks were established, the school system as well.

Unfortunately, we're not talking about suburb towns, at least not in either the Tucson or Phoenix metro areas. We're talking about continuous sprawl, consisting of mile after mile of identical tract homes. They don't have better parks, since all the available land has houses on it; they don't have better schools, for the most part, since they live in unincorporated areas of the county and their children have to commute to city schools anyway; and they don't have appreciably lower crime (more burglary, less robbery, all balances out).

What they do have is a longer commute, more traffic, a tacky house (or, in many cases, manufactured home) crammed into a postage-stamp lot with unusable 6 foot side yards between two identical tacky houses, surrounded by lawn they don't use and huge stretches of heat-retaining, unshaded asphalt. They then spend all their time complaining that the 6-lane freeway is too narrow, and that the city needs to bulldoze a tax-generating commercial strip to put in a cross-town freeway so they need not go around.

Naturally, they don't contribute to the city's tax base and resist any attempt at incorporation, but they think the city should lose millions in tax revenues AND build a billion-dollar freeway to service them anyway.

Meanwhile, their housing subdivisions sprawl across that very fragile desert ecosystem, so they bitch and moan that coyotes and hawks are eating their cats and javelinas are eating their rosebushes. They poison all the rattlesnakes and scorpions, even though they're the idiots building houses on their nesting sites. Their lawns suck the San Pedro River (the last perennial river in SE Arizona) down to a trickle.
Posted on Tuesday, September 3, 2002 - 9:44 am:   Edit PostPrint Post

I have no problem with the suburbs, as long as Whitey stays where he belongs. It's when the Honkeys start invading heretofor interesting urban neighborhoods and putting up McMansions that I take issue.

NB: The use of "Whitey" and "Honkey" are not meant to reflect a specific racial makeup so much as a specific superficial, materialist, conformist middle-class culture. And there is nothing wrong with that, but if I chose to live in a working-class, multi-ethnic neighborhood full of bohemian neerdowells, I'd appreciate it if it stayed that way...
Posted on Tuesday, September 3, 2002 - 6:44 am:   Edit PostPrint Post


Bob_Chong wrote:

Don't forget that some people just like the 'burbs, too. Painting with broad strokes here: lower taxes, lower crime, better schools, more parks, etc. Some cities are better than others, but for many of us breeders, the concrete jungle is not always so attractive.

When I lived there, I always described Tucson to my friends back in Chicago as 'the biggest small town you'll ever be in.' From Trainer's description, it sounds like it has changed, but it used to have a pretty suburban feel to it. It probably had a lot to do with what I had to compare it to, but that was my observation at least. YMMV.

Posted on Tuesday, September 3, 2002 - 5:05 am:   Edit PostPrint Post

"Now, how do we make the people better people?"

through socialism.
that, and abolishing the family.
Posted on Tuesday, September 3, 2002 - 2:48 am:   Edit PostPrint Post

I think Socialism is a reaction to human evil. It is an attempt to legislate correct ethical behaviour, stipulating that We The People are a bunch of rotten bastards who will stick a fork in the electric socket unless fork access is regulated.

And I can't say I disagree with part of that, as those of us living in the US get real mad when the government attempts to stop us from sticking that fork in.

The effort at control is doomed, however. Resources wasted are huge. Mistakes and corruption are as well.

The lack of control is doomed. People are fuckheads.

What is needed here are better people. Self managing. People who think and stuff...

Man should have freedom and self determination, but in order for him not to electrocute himself with my Fork of Metaphor, he must be responsible with that freedom and power.

Now, how do we make the people better people?
Posted on Tuesday, September 3, 2002 - 12:04 am:   Edit PostPrint Post

"Therefore, the vast majority of potential homebuyers have little choice BUT to live outside the city and commute, since there is no downtown PRODUCT available."

Don't forget that some people just like the 'burbs, too. Painting with broad strokes here: lower taxes, lower crime, better schools, more parks, etc. Some cities are better than others, but for many of us breeders, the concrete jungle is not always so attractive.
Posted on Monday, September 2, 2002 - 11:56 pm:   Edit PostPrint Post

Thanks for the end times poll data, Blackjack.

And, as I suspected, there were no questions like, "And since you believe X, then you love using aerosol cans, leaded gasoline, and nuclear isotopes."
Posted on Monday, September 2, 2002 - 8:05 pm:   Edit PostPrint Post

We have fewer lawns than Phoenix, but then again, we don't have flood irrigation either. Everyone who can afford one, it seems, has a pool now. They start at about $10K for in-ground, or $2K for above. Not one person I know who has a pool can be bothered to put a $200 cover on it and cut the evaporation rate substantially, because it's "inconvenient."

Tucson is a boom town, fed by development. We average a net of 1,000 new residents per month. They have to go somewhere, and most of them go to the suburbs and put down sod because they're from different climates and it's what they're used to. They have no in-town housing alternatives, since nobody here is willing to build condos or townhouses (to speak of).

Yes, a lot of people are concerned about the groundwater here, which is how the new Clearwater facility (CAP water is recharged then pumped back up) got funded. The water table has risen by 10 feet in some areas (immediately surrounding the central-city wells that they turned off). Unfortunately, so many people move here who can't be bothered to find out . . . and we STILL have all sorts of businesses with front lawns that nobody even WALKS on.

What would fix it? Well, for one, I pay less for water in Tucson than my parents do in central New York . . . an area in which, until the current drought, nobody ever gave water a second thought.

They're finally moving toward differential rates (a low rate for a low usage, increasing rates with increasing usage) to help curb waste, but it really needs to go further. Sounds just like the fuel argument, huh? I guess it's different when you can SEE the waste (lawn sprinklers shooting into the street, some fool washing his car for the fifth time this week, or a lush green multi-acre oasis which consumes 500-1000 gallons a DAY to survive) than when it's just a bigger vehicle being driven farther.
Posted on Monday, September 2, 2002 - 6:39 pm:   Edit PostPrint Post


Traineraz wrote:

....they live in a DESERT trying to water ridiculous lawns and fill uncovered swimming pools....

Has it changed that much? I lived in Tucson for about 3 years in the mid-90's. Lawns were almost non-existent, pools were rare, and there was concern for the diminishing groundwater resources. Shame things have changed. BTW, did CAPS ever go through?

Posted on Monday, September 2, 2002 - 4:16 pm:   Edit PostPrint Post


What's wrong with urban sprawl? If you don't like it, move. Move downtown. Move to the middle of nowhere. But no one said you had to live in a stucco box in Chandler and pretend it's Phoenix.

What's wrong with urban sprawl? If you live in an area with no existing ecosystem, unlimited water supply, and people who never leave their homes and thus care not about traffic, nothing. If you live anywhere else, everything.

I DO live downtown, in Tucson. Not a suburb of Phoenix. I ride my bike to school, walk to the 4th Avenue nightclub/shopping district, and drive everywhere else, since there are no nearby grocery stores, hardware stores, etc.

I also live the Sonoran Desert, which is a fragile ecosystem being torn apart by killdozers so developers can throw up more stick and stucco (stud and crud) termite-food Future Slums of America. Further, more developments of 1/6 acre lots means more people who can't comprehend that they live in a DESERT trying to water ridiculous lawns and fill uncovered swimming pools, when we have a water table so low (200 feet down)that our rivers (which flowed in the 1940s) are nothing but sand-filled ditches, and we have to pipe in Colorado River water to survive.

Because of the relative ease of access and low cost of land outside the city, developers do not TOUCH infill projects. They have a much higher profit margin out in the county. Therefore, the vast majority of potential homebuyers have little choice BUT to live outside the city and commute, since there is no downtown PRODUCT available. It's not as easy as, "If you don't like it, move."

Before anyone comments, I live in a new house (recycled steel frame, passive-solar, greywater-irrigated, R-30 insulated) built on an infill lot in a low-income downtown neighborhood. So yes, I do practice what I preach.
Posted on Monday, September 2, 2002 - 3:22 pm:   Edit PostPrint Post

Heh. It would cost ~ £90 ($140) to fill my tank over there. Which, honestly, I'd be perfectly willing to do, considering the amount of pleasure my car gives me. I don't look upon having a giant convertilbe as a need or a right; it is an indulgance.

I would probably get a motorcycle or something for day-to-day use if I had to pay that kind of price for gas. But US gas prices are so low, and I drive so little, that it would take me 5-7 years to make up the cost of a second, more efficient vehicle. And considering I just plunked down $200 on eBay for a new dashboard, gas is a fairly incidental expense...

"Sometimes you have to destroy the planet a little to be this cool..."
Posted on Monday, September 2, 2002 - 7:47 am:   Edit PostPrint Post

"That's smaller than one cylinder of my engine!"

I don't doubt it Blackjack. What you need is petrol prices of $5 per gallon to help 'encourage' your environmentaly-friendly nature to surface.

The UK average is £3.40 per gallon of unleaded (with 76.3% of this price being tax).
Posted on Monday, September 2, 2002 - 7:24 am:   Edit PostPrint Post


Sounded good but what did he mean by 'small car'. A 'small car' turned out to be a car with an engine size LESS than 1000cc!

That's smaller than one cylinder of my engine!
Posted on Monday, September 2, 2002 - 7:20 am:   Edit PostPrint Post

re: end times

The three columns represent the overall percentage, the percentage of self-described Fundementalist Christians and the percentage of self-described Evangelical Christians, respectively.


"As you may know, the last book of the New Testament, called the Book of Revelation, contains passages which some people say predict how the world will end. Do you think the events described in the Book of Revelation will occur at some point in the future or don't you think so?"

Yes, will............59.....77.....83
Don't think so..33.....15.....13
Not sure............8......8......4

"Do you think that the end of the world, as predicted in the Book of Revelation, will happen in your lifetime or don't you think so?"

Yes, will...........17.....25.....31
Don't think so..32.....37.....36
Not sure..........10.....15.....16
Don't think Book of Revelation predicts end of

"Do you think that the terrorist attacks of September 11th were predicted by the Book of Revelation or don't you think so?"

Yes, were........23.....34.....38
Don't think so..64.....53.....51
Not sure..........13.....13.....11

As a student of apocalyptic, I am particularly amused that nearly a quarter of those polled think that the 9/11 attacks were predicted in Revelation...

Ooh, here's more. On , we find that 47% of those who believe in Biblical eschatological prophecy also believe that the Antichrist is on earth right now. 15 percent of them (in 1999) believed Jesus would return by the year 2000 (d'oh!) and 45% beleived he would return in their lifetime.
Posted on Monday, September 2, 2002 - 6:54 am:   Edit PostPrint Post

Passenger cars are only a small part of the fossil-fuel problem. They are just more noticible because Joe Average pumps his own gas. Driving an SUV does not probably contribute to global warmin nearly as much as our general disposible consumer culture. Every bit of packaging and processing and transport that goes into the convenient items on your store shelves takes energy, and most of that in the US is coming from fossil fuels (increasingly from natural gas, which is less polluting, but still contributes to GW). And good imported from foreign countries are likely made using energy from inefficient old coal-fired plants. Sure, we don't have to smell the smoke, but we share the same atmosphere...

As long as our primary sources of energy are reliant on combustion, it really isn't going to matter how efficient your car is. Electric cars, even fuel cells, are not going to help. It takes electricity to seperate out the hydrogen for fuel cells, you know. Or burning methane. Unfortunately, we are kinda stuck in a technological rut, since at this point, since the only alternate energy sources which are not far more expensive than fossil fuels are nuclear (which, in addition to the exagerated safety issues, has tremendous startup costs), wind (which is only efficient in very specific areas) and hydroelectric (which shares all of the above problems).

I did read some interesting stuff about recent advances in photovoltaics, but nothing that will see application for decades.

We want to buy boxes of pre-moistened wipes in individual cellophane wrappers, as opposed to using a rag to wipe the sink. I'm not going to characterize this as wrong, but we need to recognize that this sort of living is likely to have some consequences.
Posted on Monday, September 2, 2002 - 1:17 am:   Edit PostPrint Post


My hobby is pretending to live 1500 years ago. It involves hitting people with swords, sleeping under canvas on piles of sheepskins, cooking out of clay pots over open fires and drinking vast amounts of alcohol in the evening. The public view us with a mixture of interest and bewilderment, but so long as they keep paying to see us who cares?
Posted on Monday, September 2, 2002 - 1:12 am:   Edit PostPrint Post


I agree, tax credits are a good idea to encourage use of fuel-efficient cars and would be a lot more popular than punitive taxes. Although money raised from taxation could be used to create better transport alternatives, i.e. decent public transport and freight rail-networks etc. (although unfortunately governments don't tend to do this and use the money raised to fund their own favoured areas, education, health, defence, industry subsidies, whatever).

What about this lame effort at such a tax credit from UK chancellor of the exchequer, Gordon Brown. A £55 annual reduction in the fixed rate 'road-tax' (which we pay in the UK) for small cars. Sounded good but what did he mean by 'small car'. A 'small car' turned out to be a car with an engine size LESS than 1000cc! I don't personally know anyone who drives a car this small (not even here in the UK, although I know a lot of people who drive cars just over 1000cc) and apparantly my 1100 cc car was not classfied as a small car. It seems that only 4.39% of car drivers in the UK were entitled to his paltry credit. A government attempt at a crafty bit of eco-friendly PR that would cost them next to nothing, they really must think we're stupid.

The problem with exempting goods transport is that they are in fact more of a problem with regards to Global warming than personal cars. The fuel used up shipping goods all around the globe has a huge environmental impact. Is it fair to penalise personal car users heavily and give a larger offender exemption? If we are serious about tackling the problem we cannot just tackle certain causes of the problem and leave others.

Goods transport is a major problem. Other, more fuel-efficient, means of transport other than long-distance road haulage need to be utilised more. More transport of goods by train needs to be encouraged (it uses less fuel per container of goods than 1 truck pulling 1 container). We also need to have a long look at whether we ought to be encouraging goods to be transported from the other side of the world to fulfil our demands. Whether we do this through taxes or incentives it will cost us all the same (the money ultimately comes from us).

We can forget the notion that we can do something meaningful about fossil-fuel emissions without seeing the cost of consumer goods rising. Unfortunately this will be the cost of trying to reduce fossil-fuel emissions in any impactful way.
Posted on Sunday, September 1, 2002 - 8:39 pm:   Edit PostPrint Post

What's wrong with urban sprawl? If you don't like it, move. Move downtown. Move to the middle of nowhere. But no one said you had to live in a stucco box in Chandler and pretend it's Phoenix.
Posted on Sunday, September 1, 2002 - 8:36 pm:   Edit PostPrint Post

Soylent Green is PEEEEPLE!!! IT"S PEEEEEPLLLLE!!!!

My all time favorite SNL skit.
Posted on Sunday, September 1, 2002 - 8:34 pm:   Edit PostPrint Post

Well, if we could truly incorporate hydrogen fueled vehicles into mainstream use, we wouldn't have to even worry about conversations like this. Well, at least the part about dependence on the Mid East. Taxation will still be an issue and instead of oil conglomerates we will have Hydro-Fuel Syndicate.
Posted on Sunday, September 1, 2002 - 8:31 pm:   Edit PostPrint Post

'tis a better solution than our current urban sprawl.

Fuel-efficient vehicles do nothing to cut traffic congestion or urban sprawl.
Posted on Sunday, September 1, 2002 - 8:27 pm:   Edit PostPrint Post

"but also demand for
housing close to employment"

Just what we need. Let's all move to Metropolis and start eating some soylent green.
Posted on Sunday, September 1, 2002 - 8:20 pm:   Edit PostPrint Post

"Why do conservatives hate their grandchildren?"

LOL. When all else fails, wave the bloody shirt!

"I do recall reading recently that many of the 'Christian conservatives' are expressly unconcerned about
environmental issues because they believe we are in the "end times" and their lord and savior is coming back next
week, so the future of the planet really doesn't matter. Do you fall into that category?"

Well, this was directed at MD but I'd like to jump in. I am both a Christian and a conservative (on the libertarian side of things...IMO, the gov't is the problem and not the solution, which, IMO, is the failing of liberalism...but that unending, unsolvable debate can wait for another day). I do believe that we are living in the end times. But so have all Christians from day one. When you're talking God's timeline, an eon is a blink (or if you just to talk fossil record alone, mankind's time so far is a blink in the history of the planet). So while the end can come at any time, another 10,000 years is right around the corner at the end could be then, too.

But I don't think that A+B=C here. You are getting a little ridiculous with your reasoning. Because we believe that these are the end times, that doesn't mean that we shit on the planet for the fun of it. That doesn't mean we live a consequences free life. What we do to the planet matters, just as our daily behavior matters. For example, though I believe I am saved though faith, that doesn't mean I should go on a killing spree because I'm "covered."

Do you have some kind of scientific poll data to support your claims? What percentage is "many?"

Finally, I believe that the church has often failed in its responsibility to promote good stewardship of the planet. God gave us dominion over the earth, and look what we've done. That can and should be addressed. God wanted us to take care of it and use it as we needed, not play around irresponsibly with the resources. The planet is enormously rich, and if we use it correctly, we'll be fine.
Posted on Sunday, September 1, 2002 - 8:06 pm:   Edit PostPrint Post

Actually, raising the tax on fuel would not just increase demand for fuel-efficient vehicles, but also demand for housing close to employment, mass transit, and other transportation/lifestyle alternatives.

Unfortunately, it would hit hard farmers (wait, don't we subsidize them anyway?) and the rural poor (I think we subsidize most of them, as well).
Posted on Sunday, September 1, 2002 - 8:02 pm:   Edit PostPrint Post

"If our gas prices went up, maybe we would see less of those damn SUV's taking up all that damn room
and gas."

The first problem with this idea is the fact that the US is humongous and a majority of our goods are brought to us by trucks. Trucks consume gas (well, diesel, but close enough). So raising prices on gas would cause everything to go up in price due to increased transportation costs. But if you then exempted diesel from the tax, everyone would start buying diesels.

The second problem is the notion of increased taxes. The last thing I need is to turn over an even greater portion of my income to Washington.

I would much rather see a tax *credit* for fuel efficient cars. If we're going to try social engineering through taxation, let's reward certain behaviors instead of punishing others. Give people money back: don't take away money from others.

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