Zinc -- you can suck on it.
I’m down with some sort of flu-thing at the moment (maybe regular flu, possibly swine flu, and I can’t totally rule out strep throat). The illness came on within 24 hours and left me a shivering mess. 200mg ibuprofen keeps the fever down for a few hours and gives me a window to feel like a regular human being (otherwise I’d be in bed right now, feeling extremely sorry for myself). This seems like a good as time as any to share my thoughts on various cold and flu remedies.
Disclaimer: I’m not a medical professional. Take my advice at your own risk.
Posted in Evolution/Biology, Health/Body-hacking
Tagged antibiotics, Baxter, bird flu, CMV, cold remedy, Epstein-Barr, flu remedy, flu shot, H1N1, H5N1, hydrogen peroxide, mononucleosis, strep, swine flu, vertigo
Up and up and ... ?
A graph like the one above should make you nervous. A line going nearly straight up indicates a “bubble” situation — and all bubbles must pop. Dot-com bubble, U.S. housing market bubble, Dutch tulip bulb bubble; historically, there are dozens of examples of market bubbles. The above graph references population, not markets, but there are just as many examples of animal population crashes (for example the chilling story of the reindeer of St. Matthew Island in Alaska). Bubble dynamics are always the same; exponential growth is never sustainable, and is thus followed by exponential shrinkage.
Human population can’t go up indefinitely. Something will eventually limit (and reverse) our growth. It might be food, it might be energy, or it might be cultural factors. “Doomers” predict human population decline will be brought on by hard limits to oil and food production, and will be accompanied by chaos, violence, and strife (Thomas Malthus, with his predictions of overpopulation and mass starvation, could be considered the original doomer).
Some, like the environmental writer Fred Pearce, predict a rosier decline. Pearce predicts that voluntary reduced fertility (women choosing to use birth control) will allow human population growth to taper off and eventually decline gradually, with a a minimum of strife. We’ll avert economic catastrophe by working into old age; we’ll “harness older people as a resource.”
My bullshit detector goes off listening to both lines of thinking. The doomers and the optimists are both overlooking important variables. To get a complete picture of human population decline scenarios, what factors do we need to consider?
Posted in Evolution/Biology, Utopian Speculations
Tagged birth control, depopulation, Detroit, fertility rates, food production, Haber process, nuclear power, peak oil, rewilding, world population
Future humans -- more attractive, more intelligent, more nurturing?
I’m generally a fan of the physicist Michio Kaku. I enjoy his speculations about the future of humanity, his realistic optimism, and his willingness to speculate about ideas from the realm of science-fiction. But recently, I watched a short video in which Dr. Kaku explained some of his ideas about evolution, and I found myself strongly disagreeing with a number of his points.
Sometimes life just pulls you into things, and you’re happy to go there.
A raver offering up her boobies to John Digweed.
In 1994, when I was just a 24-year-old fool, I was invited to join an electronic music collective operating under the alias Trip ‘n Spin
. The “initiation,” as I remember it, consisted of me playing a few self-produced dance tracks (recorded on cassette) to Sam Urton (alias Novabass
), Greg Lindberg (alias The G
), and Stephen Kay (alias DJ Special K