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Joe Ibershoff

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doomsday scenario [Feb. 19th, 2006|10:54 am]
Joe Ibershoff
[Current Mood |analytical]

I really don't have time to be doing this. I've got so much to do in the next week and a half... But oh well, I'm gonna be thinking about it until I get it out of my brain and into the keyboard.

Here are 2 blog entries by someone else about his thoughts on the Iran nuclear crisis paired with peak oil issues, and below the links are my thoughts about his thoughts. Basically, he presents what to me seems like a worst-case scenario. Not necessarily a WWIII, though it's impossible to say what would happen following the events he describes. The aftermath may even be enough for me to begin putting into effect my plans for The Collapse.

(Skip the first paragraph in this entry, it's referring to an old discussion about batteries.)
The Iran crisis & global peak oil

(This one is a response to some questions someone email him about his first entry... there's a lot of explanation of the background info he used to come to his conclusions.)
The Iran crisis & global peak oil, Part 2

He sounds convincing, so I'm willing to believe it is a distinct possibility, but I don't give it "better than even" chances. Why? Because *so* many people stand to lose so much from it. If this were likely, surely enough other people would realize the probable result of their actions (among politicians, including American and Israeli) that they would not act as naively as the author believes. There are 2 main ways that I think things *could* lead to the events the author describes.

One is if the politicians try to bluff about the actions they will take, but don't understand what a bluff really is. If both sides bluff themselves into corners, then rather than back down after making such strong statements they decide they must follow through (hence not understanding what a bluff is), they may go ahead with military actions because they prefer to make a mistake boldly than to back down from what was supposed to be a bluff. This would still require them to not know or understand the full extent of the danger; I doubt they would be so naive as to not realize there would be some danger and some negative consequences, though, so hopefully they would still make a very strong effort to avoid even those sort of bluffs.

The other way is if Ahmedinajad (the current leader in Iran) *wants* this to happen. If he is intentionally trying to provoke this outcome (the author gives decent support for this possibility in the second posting), then he can and will do everything he can (probably short of actual attacks) to provoke the US and/or Israel. He could just go ahead and do it now (he doesn't *have* to wait to be attacked), but I don't think he wants to be the aggressor. If he can provoke someone into killing hundreds of thousands of Iranians in order to take out the nuclear plants, then he would be "the good guy", or at worst "the victim", no matter how harsh his retribution or how much he asked for it. Again though, if politicians realize what he is doing, surely they would do everything in their power to avoid being forced into military action. Even if we have to totally back down and tell Iran "sure, go ahead with enrichment, we believe it's not for military use", surely that would be preferable to what the author describes. That would give us (and the Israelis) time to try to encourage dissent within Iran, maybe resulting in a coup or something so that Ahmedinajad and others like him are no longer in power. Or, time to launch a clandestine attempt to sabotage or destroy the facilities. My point is, would we really allow our hand to be forced, or would we just go along with it and try to eliminate the problem in the time before any nukes get made?

I think it would take both -- Ahmedinajad would have to be trying to provoke the situation, and politicians would have to be ignorant and/or naive about his actual plans. So, while it's still very scary to realize how close to the brink we could really be, I don't think it's very likely.

Unless I'm putting too much faith in the good judgment of our politicians, and not enough in the martyr complex of Ahmedinajad.
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yeeeeess, masster [Feb. 12th, 2006|02:15 pm]
Joe Ibershoff
Mind-controlling parasites and zombie roaches. Sweet.
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global warming and US policy to stifle opinion [Feb. 10th, 2006|02:51 pm]
Joe Ibershoff
This is mostly about global warming and the US policy of stifling information about global warming. Then at the end there's an instance of the US stifling an activist against globalized agriculture and genetically modified foods, included only because it follows the vein of apparent US policy to supress information and opinions it doesn't like. I know, it's kinda mixing two issues, but the "stifling global warming info" part wouldn't be a big deal if there weren't strong evidence that the rest of the world thinks it's a bigger deal than we do. And plus global warming research just seems like the sort of issue people may want to keep informed about.

Summaries and links to source articlesCollapse )
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me to start posting again? [Feb. 10th, 2006|02:36 pm]
Joe Ibershoff
Hmm, here's another post by me... does this mean I'll *really* start posting again on a semi-regular basis? Maybe, maybe not. I basically realized that I spend quite a bit of time (when I have it to spare) researching current events. I do this because it seems that most news articles I read do a very poor job of presenting the important facts. Some events don't need this sort of research, because the issue is pretty cut-and-dried. But sometimes, especially with the more controversial subjects, I feel like it can be very hard to really understand what's going on, because most of the articles about it leave out many important details, so you have to read at least 4 or 5 to get the full context. Sometimes it takes more than that.

When I find an issue that's important (in my opinion), and the details seem especially hard to find (or at worst, when politicians try to avoid the real issue and then the media allows them to deflect the debate off the important points), I sometimes collect what I think some of the important details are and email them to those who might be interested. But, if I'm going to all that work, I could post it on LJ too. No real extra work, so there's very little reason not to do it.

So, with that in mind, maybe you'll see the occasional news brief and/or analysis showing up on my journal from time to time.
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Swing Dance Extravaganza! [Nov. 11th, 2005|09:10 pm]
Joe Ibershoff
Yes, I live! No, I haven't looked at LJ in a long time. But Martin (yoda21182) suggested I post this info on LJ for people to see as well as sending out emails, so here I go.

Swing Dance Extravaganza!
Friday-Sunday, November 18-20 (Friday-Sunday)

Bascially it is 3 swing dances, one each night (Saturday night is live music). Also, Saturday and Sunday are all-day workshops on swing dancing. You can go to the dances, sign up for all 3 dances for a discount, or sign up for the workshops and the dances come with it. But, the postmark deadline for pre-registration (cheaper) is tomorrow. Emily and I are going to do the workshops and probably all 3 dances too, definitely Saturday night for the live music. I thought some of you guys might be interested as well, at least in the dances if not the workshops.


The workshops and the dances all together are $50 (per person I assume, not couple) if you send registration tomorrow, or $60 at the door. Friday and Sunday night dances are $5 each if you don't do the workshops, Saturday night dance is $15 if you don't do the workshops. Or you can get all 3 dances for $20 if you send regstration tomorrow.

Summary info below, more details on the website link above.

~ Friday, Nov. 18 - "Get Warmed Up" Workshop Kickoff Swing Dance,
9:30 pm-12:30 am. Location: Arthur Murray Dance Studio, 1801 Alexandria Drive, Lexington, KY.

~ Saturday, Nov. 19 - Workshop Classes, 10 am-5 pm,
Location: Arthur Murray Dance Studio, 1801 Alexandria Drive, Lexington, KY

~ Saturday, Nov. 19 - “White Heat in Lexington” Swing Dance, 7:30 pm-12 am.
Featuring live music by the Kentucky Jazz Repertory Orchestra

~ Sunday, Nov. 20 - Workshop Classes, 10 am-5 pm,
Location: Arthur Murray Dance Studio, 1801 Alexandria Drive, Lexington, KY

~ Sunday, Nov. 20 - "Crash and Burn" Farewell Swing Dance,
8:30 pm-12 am. You'll wish your tired feet were fire-proof, but oh, the music will make you feel so cool & refreshed! Location: Arthur Murray Dance Studio, 1801 Alexandria Drive, Lexington, KY.
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(no subject) [Jul. 4th, 2004|02:30 pm]
Joe Ibershoff
World, I love you. Just thought you might like to know.
-- Joe
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fighting my personal status quo [Jun. 21st, 2004|09:49 am]
Joe Ibershoff
I sometimes wonder how many wonderful ideas I've missed out on because they seemed "too crazy" (or "too normal/mainstream"). How many times have I disregarded an awaiting opportunity, shining truth, or insightful perspective simply because my view of the world is too narrow to recognize the merits of something foreign to my usual mindset? How willing am I *really* to give fair evaluation to an idea that seems at first distasteful to me?

Often, I notice that many people defend the status quo with almost religious zeal, essentially refusing to give consideration to any idea that seems at odds with the way things are currently done, or even launching a knee-jerk attack on the opposing idea. So I begin to wonder how often I myself do that, either with regard to the typical "status quo" or even with regard to my own personal "status quo". I'll try to watch myself for this.
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Quakers are my kind of people [Jun. 20th, 2004|05:07 pm]
Joe Ibershoff
Yesterday I went to the Charleston Friends Meeting -- i.e. the Quaker worship service here in Charleston. I was struck by just how well I fit in with these people; I'm actually inclined to think that at that Meeting, the term "eccentric" probably wouldn't accurately describe me. Compared to most Americans, I'm pretty unusual (maybe bordering on strange at times), but compared to the Quakers at this Meeting I think I'm pretty normal. Here's a glimpse of what I mean:

There were 5 people at the Meeting, plus myself and pianojet (who happened also to be in town this weekend). And in that group,
  • one man has been commuting to work on his bike for 8 years (and he proudly refers to riding his bike as "causing traffic jams"), despite being old enough that his salt-and-pepper hair and beard seemed more grey than not
  • another man (who is equally greyed) went on a 2-day biking trip last weekend with a few family members, and was planning on biking around Kanawha City later that day
  • another man just got laid off from his job in social work (the agency experienced budget cuts) which is disappointing to him, but which excites him because now he can spend the next few months concentrating on political activism leading up to the elections. It also came up that his brother is a member of an intentional community in VA that practices sustainable agriculture, and (in this guy's opinion) they've been doing it long enough that "they really have it down" -- and on top of that this same man (not his brother) lives on the remnants of what used to be a commune, with the land still in Trust
  • a woman I knew when I was in high school (but who I didn't know was Quaker) and who home-schools her very bright children (I took AP Calculus in 10th grade, which was pretty early -- but her son came to my HS to take it while he was in 9th grade; he and I did more than a couple math competitions together) offered that any of us could stop by her house while she and her family are on vacation to pick all the fresh raspberries we want, since it seems they will be coming ripe while she's not around (and mentioned a couple other things we could help ourselves to from her garden)
  • at some point in the conversation, the 5th person mentioned a $.45 gasoline tax in a favorable context
Save the info about home-schooling and such that I already knew, all the rest of that came out in the course of 60-90 minutes of conversation.

A lot of y'all may think I'm kind of a crazy guy... and maybe I am (or maybe I've just gotten used to the idea that I seem so to other people)... but more and more I realize that a lot of my "crazy" stuff really isn't that crazy. If you will allow me a moment of conceit, most of it's certainly a lot less "crazy" than Galileo's ridiculous proposal that the Earth orbits the Sun. ;-) Don't roll your eyes, you know it's true.
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(no subject) [Jun. 10th, 2004|07:09 pm]
Joe Ibershoff
[Current Mood |satisfiedsatisfied]

I win.
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in Lexington, heading to Charleston [Jun. 5th, 2004|03:00 pm]
Joe Ibershoff
So, I've quit, and I've moved. Shew! It was a lot rougher than I thought it would be. Had to toss out most of my furniture because I couldn't afford to move it. But whatever, it's only stuff. The most important thing is that it's done. :-) As good as it is to be here though, I'll miss some things about living in Maryland, and I'll definitely miss some of the people. But c'est la vie.

I've currently in Lexington, and I'm leaving tomorrow morning to ride my bike to Charleston. It's 175 miles as the crow flies, or 240 miles as the Joe rides (can't go on the interstate, and have to go a good 10-15 miles out of my way to get to the campsites). I'm planning to spend 4 days; I could try for 3, but that's not leaving much room for getting lost, getting flats, etc. Plus I'd like it to be more of a relaxation thing than a stress thing.

In any case, once I get there I'll be spending roughly the next month in Charleston living with my Mom. Then I'll be moving to Georgetown to live with my Dad, probably around the 4th of July. Then come August, I'll be moving into my place in Lexington. Same house I lived in before and almost the same roommates, but I'll be in a different bedroom. I wound up taking the small bedroom, partly as incentive to force myself to get rid of some of the crap I have that I don't need.

I'm happy. :-)
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