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Comment: Re:A brazilian point of view (Score 5, Informative) 432

by morcego (#47087941) Attached to: Has the Ethanol Threat Manifested In the US?

is the US climate and land conducive to growing sugar cane?

Mostly it is not, unless you somehow genetically engineer sugar cane for different climates (some groups are working on it). The reason our climate and land are so conductive to growing sugar cane gives Brazil an edge, and is perhaps the reason it is more successful than a few other countries that also have a huge alternative fuel program.

Corn based ethanol has less energy potential and is much more expensive. However, it is the only viable option available for the US right now. There are several studies involving kelp, sugar beat and castor beans that might benefit the US. Castor beans has a lot of potential. But it is much easier to pass laws and incentives for corn related programs in the US, for obvious reasons.

Comment: A brazilian point of view (Score 5, Interesting) 432

by morcego (#47087823) Attached to: Has the Ethanol Threat Manifested In the US?

Brazil is considered one of the world leader in ethanol, the country with the most successful alternative fuel program, one of the cheaper (if not cheapest) ethanol technologies and, by using sugar cane, one of the most energy efficient. All cars here can easily handle up to E40, and most cars can handle any mix of gas and ethanol. Oh, and the flex fuel technology for any kind of mix? Mostly developed here also.

That all being said, I don't use pure ethanol. We are not able to find pure gas here, because of local laws (the government mandates the ethanol level), but I avoid it as much as I can. Even with everything we have in our favor here, it is still most expensive, and the overall car performance is not as good as with gas. For ethanol to be a cheaper option for the consumer, its price on the pump has to be no higher than 75% of gas.

There is, however, another side of the coin. Gas is a limited resource. We need to develop alternative fuel technologies, and right now ethanol is the best, if not only, viable option. The technology is getting cheaper everyday, and improving a lot. As someone who saw the so called birth of the car ethanol, in the 1980's, I can see how much that changed.

Last, but not least, gas with some ethanol in it does pollute less. I remember seeing some time ago some studies regarding E20(ish), and the number was impressive.

All told, it is an important technology, it is not a scam or a threat, but it is still improving. Luckly, we still have the luxury to choose, so we can say no. That won't last, tho.

Comment: Re:Lets just stop (Score 1) 667

by morcego (#46551271) Attached to: Creationists Demand Equal Airtime With 'Cosmos'

Which is no reason to debate them. Specially since if anyone buy into their arguments, they are already beyond any ability to think critically or understanding logic, so trying to argue the merits of their argument is worse than useless.

Whenever you engage them as equals in a debate (like Bill Nye did), you are just giving them credibility they wouldn't otherwise have.

Comment: Lets just stop (Score 1) 667

by morcego (#46550875) Attached to: Creationists Demand Equal Airtime With 'Cosmos'

Lets just stop pretending these guys are worth listening to, and stop giving them an illusion of credibility, shall we?

Let them fade into obscurity and talk to their own flock. We don't give flatearthers this kind of attention. They are just making noise to promote themself. Like their site, which is featured prominently in this article (and which I'm sure a lot of people clicked on).

THIS is the kind of attention they want.

Comment: Standard in São Paulo - Brazil, for years now (Score 3, Insightful) 405

by morcego (#46509939) Attached to: Paris Bans Half of All Cars On the Road

São Paulo has had car circulation restrictions based on plate number for years now (more than a decade, too lazy to check exactly when). Mon-Fri, each day a couple different numbers aren't allowed on the streets.

The streets are still clogged, still polluted as hell. Government says it improved things. I can only imagine what it would be like without this restriction, then.

Comment: Re:82 years old (Score 1) 401

by morcego (#46202475) Attached to: Leonard Nimoy: Smoking Is Illogical

Leonard Nimoy is 82 and he probably has a few more years ahead of him. Was he planning on living to be 1000 years old?

Smoking has pluses and minuses.

If he didn't have COPD, he'd probably live another 5 or 10 years longer than whatever he's got.

COPD is one of the more painful ways to die. It's like breathing through a straw.

I will back this argument with a family case.

My grandfather is 91. Smoked for most of his life. He now has emphysema, and we fear he will not see another year.
Except for his lungs his health is perfect. He could easily live another 10 years. Not even "normal" problems like cholesterol, blood pressure or anything. Perfect health at 91. Except for having lost 80% of his lung capacity because of smoking.

Watching him is one of the main reasons I quit smoking 2 years ago. Just in time, according to my pneumologist, to avoid lung damage (my long are still considered normal, but were closing in on borderline).

Comment: Re:First Amendment bullshit (Score 1) 102

by morcego (#45968059) Attached to: Notorious Patent Troll Sues Federal Trade Commission

And still mostly civilized countries don't consider bigotry as "free speech".

Say you go on air and accuse someone publicly of having committed a crime. Not saying he "might have", saying he actually did. You are going to get sued for it. Are you going to argue "free speech"?

"Free speech" is not a carte blanche for "irresponsible speech", "bigotry" or "verbal assault". Racist is considered a "hate crime" is most civilized countries. The fact it isn't in the US tells more about the USA than about freedom.

Comment: First Amendment bullshit (Score 1) 102

by morcego (#45965131) Attached to: Notorious Patent Troll Sues Federal Trade Commission

First Amendment is the standard go-to bullshit everyone proclaims right now.
I mean, seriously? If I threaten your life, it is ok because I have a first amendment right? How about if I'm being racist? What if I prank call 911? How about screaming 'FIRE!' inside a crowed theater? Hey, I was just expressing myself, and I have a first amendment right to do so.

Yeah, here is some free expression for you: FUCK YOU!

People should wake up and smell the times, and see that John Locke's idea of "rights" is dead and buried and, if you are still defending those views you are an ignorant self-centered narcissistic a-hole, that should never reproduce for the sake of humanity.

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