The Impossibility of Peace on Earth

Many many people wish for peace on Earth. However what they usually actually want however is that everyone would do what the person making that statement want them to do. Indeed most of the violence in this world today stims from the very concepts that if we force those people to behave the way we want them to we will make the world a better place.

This kind of thinking never worked and never will.  Yet people will always try to apply it to their very own cause.  Indeed the very concepts of democracy is predicated on the idea of getting enough people together to force everyone else  to do things your way. Predictably it has always led to more violence and higher levels of poverty and the strong suppression of minority groups.

People form groups of all different types. The groups will have different goals and agenda.  The groups join factions and coalitions with others in either defence or to better force their own way on others. Often the factions contain groups that despise each other but are cooperating to harm a different faction.  This is made even worse when the money or power is involved is high.

There will never be peace on Earth.  Human beings simply will not stop trying to force others. At best you can reduce the level of violence.  One method of doing so is to  reduce the level of power the different factions are trying to control.  A second is to increase the ability of individuals to resist being forced.   You will not get peace in this manner but you will get less violence.


Weath a Vector for Disease.

Weath has grown to the point that half the world’s population is no longer in poverty and is expected to bring most of the rest out of poverty but the end of this century..and while wealth eliminates most diseases it is a vector for others. Obesity is one of the most common as well as increased anxiety. However decreased birth rates is a very very common occurrence in more than 95% of the population exposed to wealth.

This is so wide spread as so pervasive that many of the country so affected can no longer maintain their current population and rely on immigration to meet their population needs. But as wealth spreads to more countries and the countries that they are immigrating from experience a like drop immigration will no longer be able to fill that need.

However as much as 5% of population are not as heavily affected by this reduced birth rates.  And possible 1% are barely affected at all. Between 40 and 60 percent of the children they have are also less affected by reduced birth rates. This factor will result in a larger and larger percentage each generation having their birth rates reduced by wealth.  While the population growth rate may drop drastically as wealth spreads to more countries within a few more generations it will recover somewhat as this percentage grows.

So where did all that water come from?

The earth has a very abundant amount of water. Scientists have speculated about the origins of that abundance for a long time with a great many theories some more possible than others.  Some it was always here trapped in the rocks and slowly released others that it arrived here with comets and astroid impacts. There may be another possibility.

There are some indication that between 4 and 5 billion years ago, before the sun had even started fusion the earth had about 10 bars of atmosphere. One of the possible make up of gas was roughly 10,000 kg/m^2 nitrogen, 10,000 kg/m^2 carbon dioxide and nearly 80,000 kg/m^2 of hydrogen.  These are simply rough approximation and both the total and ratio might be off some.  However at 10 bars of atmosphere even the infrared radiation that the collapsing sun was generating would have given the planet a surface temperature between 250°k and 350°k.  That atmosphere at that temperature on a planet rotating as fast as it was then is going to generate wind and lighting.

Lighting is going to have some interesting effects on that mix.  It will break the bonds hold the gas modules together.  This will result in methane creation, ammonia creation and water creation in trace amounts.  But over the 100 to 300 million years that the atmosphere was like that that could become quite a total. Possibly even enough to account for most of it.

So now there is yet another possible source that the abundance of water we have got there. It is going to take time and work to figure out how much of the water we have originated in the lighting storms of the earth at the dawn of it’s existence.

I possibility worth thinking about.

Was religion why modern man won?

Was it religion that was responsible for the success of early man? Early man had many similarities with the other primates of ancient times. Several of his competitors even had larger brains and may well have been more intelligent. But there is no real evidence that they had religious beliefs. However there is that modern man did. This single factor changes the working group dynamics. A shared belief system will hold groups together that would have otherwise have split up for various reasons. This would allow not only for a larger group size but the much greater degree of skill specialization that such larger group can have. This factors alone would give them a decided advantage of the other primates. But that is not the only advantage that such will give.
All of the primates would take great risk for friends and family, share what they have, look out for their sick or injured. These things are part of evolving from a pack animal. Religion however and beliefs will carry that much much further. A individual will endure great hardship for their belief and even sacrifice themselves for it. A belief in the good if the tribe will see members making irrational decision for the benefit of others or to further the goals of others that are of no benefit to them at all. This factors would allow the religious leaders to choose to harm some to improve the lives or well being of the rest. It would also allow such to command more resources and work be put in on a project that would otherwise have happened. This would make these groups far better able to deal with things than the nonreligious primates.
Yet the effects go even further than that. The concept of evil and sin also come with religion. This will allow the religious leaders to severely punish any behavior that doesn’t conform to the religious views and rewards those that do creating even stronger group ties. Such would also see the other primates as evil and something that needs to be destroyed since they do not follow that religion or any religion at all. Even in areas that do not have other primates fight over religious beliefs will happen. Fighting and war will improve the weapons in use and the tactics which will spread to the other tribes quickly giving them yet another advantage over the other primates. With theses advantage modern man will quickly destroy any competing primate bands that inhabit the same areas including those that are as smart or even smarter than they are.
For packs religion is a very powerful survival mechanism. Those packs with it will out compete those without. It allows tighter binding of the pack, punishment or culling of disruptive members and greater pack stability. However with it comes war, bigotry superstitious and prejudice.

Did Algae Kill Mars?

A billion years ago Mars and earth were very similar.  Both had liquid water and while Mars’ 4o to 50% covrage was less than earth’s 70+ it was certainly enough for oceans. Mars also likely had a denser atmosphere than earth currently has though not as dense as earth had then giving it a temperature slightly above earth of today.   This atmosphere was at one time even denser than that but unlike earth the volcanoes were no longer active enough to replace the atmosphere that was constantly being trapped when it reacted with the minerals in the oceans.  But overall these two places were very similar.

Then algae appeared on earth virtually wreaking the planet. The o2 reacted with far more minerals far faster than the co2. The atmospheric pressure dropped below that of even today and the planet froze over. Eventually the minerals in the oceans were heavily depleted and the volcanoes replenished the atmosphere back to nearly the same robust levels but with a very different composition.

But did this also occur on Mars? Did the very same process that brought about algae on earth do the same on mars? Did all of that iron oxide instead of being trapped in sandstone end up as the surface layer of ever stinking ocean that were quickly becoming ice caps to become wind blown dust? Without sufficient volcanoes could Mars simply not recover like the earth did and the atmosphere continue to things until what you find today is what is left?

It is a possibility to consider.

Were The Neanderthals Smarter Than Us?

Neanderthals are often pictured as simple, brutish and violent creatures. But really how accurate is that description? Virtually all of modem man’s accomplishments stem from the fact that he lives in larger social groups. This has allowed for much greater specialization, and more skills available to teach the young. Often the tools being used and the techniques of the two groups at that time is sited as a reason why modern man is smarter but such only come about because of the greater numbers living together.

But consider that Neanderthals were smart enough that they did not need same number of people to survive and thrive in that same area. Their social organization was much more family than tribe and so more likely to split up and move on when conditions permitted. The level of trade that was going on were quite significant for such small groups. This is indication that the relationships between the . different groups was quite a bit more peaceful that is often assumed. Often you see them portrayed as raiding each other for mates. Intermarriage from the different groups is a much more likely occurrence from groups that trade that much. The lack of as many superstitions can also be inferred since thing that likely had overt religious significance is far far less in the Neanderthals settlements. So were they actually smarter? No one can say for sure but they might not have been the simple brutish violent creature that so many have assumed.

There has been a great many studies done that suggest population totals only in the thousands and spread out all across Europe. This was inconsistent with how often Neanderthals artifacts are found. Newer techniques for analyzing the genetic material put the minimum population at 10,000 and probably greater than that closer to 100,000 at its height. Yet even this may be a low number as more sited and and populations are discovered each decade.. Also they were around for roughly 250,000 years. This is far from the species on the verge of extinction it whole existence that was popular in science just a few years ago.

The family nature verse the tribal will have quite a significant effect on the types of artifact that will be common. Art work and personal decorations will have far less importance and far less time spent on them. Yet it is the very lack of these that is most often sighted as reasons they were not as smart. The nearly complete lack of religious artifacts is not taken of a lack of religious superstition but a lack to express those with out ever considering that they may have simply been intelligent enough not to be superstitious. If you don’t have spirits, gods and things to appease there is even less reason to go in for the levels of adornments that were common in the other tribal societies. If they know that carrying a charm or idol has no effect what so ever on their outcome why go to all that expense and time to create such that fill the tribal sites of modem man? Yet it is this very lack of religious items that has lead so many to say that they were simple minded.

Probably the two things that never occurred in the neanderthals were the office of chief and the office of priest something that was almost certainly presence in every tribe. Because of this they are less intelligent? Not necessarily. Some might even consider that a sign of more intelligence. However with out these two factors binding the social groups together small family groups would be much more likely to simply go their own way. Small groups of 30 to 60 will never have the level of specialization that the tribes of 200 to 500 had. A tribe will have more innovation in a century than such groups will have in a thousand years. It will have more time to spend on art work in that same century than such groups of the same population will have to spend on such in over a thousand years. The specialization will allow skills to be developed in a tribe far in advance of a level that such family groups could possible have. It could easy be argued that the tribe made up for lack of intelligence of the neanderthals by use of greater numbers. At this point we simply don’t know. Far to many people are trying to prove their own ideas instead of looking to figure out what was really happening.

War like brute or peaceful hunter trader? Both are still possibilities at this point. Family groups tend to be a bit more territorial than tribes but are also more able to come to terms with their neighbors before bloodshed happens. It will take a lot more time considering various possibilities and gathering even more information about them before we know how smart they actually were.

The Hardships of One Veteran

Once upon a time, in a far off land called Iraq, there was a little sulfur mine called Al-Mishrak near Mosul. In June of 2003, unknown parties, most likely Iraqi insurgents, working in the name of, or at the behest of Saddam Hussein, set the mine ablaze. It was the largest release of sulfur dioxide in all of recorded human history.

The 101st Airborne Division was based in Northern Iraq at the time, spread between Mosul, Qayyarah West Airfield, and a few other smaller bases. As the winds shifted throughout the day, it would blow a plume of dense sulfur dioxide across the land. For Qayyarah West Airfield, it would blow right at us from just before sunrise until around lunchtime or early afternoon. We would wake up choking in a yellow fog, as though we had woken up on the planet Venus (without the diamond rain, unfortunately).

For several days to a week, we would still get up and do physical training at 0630, then got about our daily duties, unaware of the danger we were surrounded by. Eventually, the Division surgeon put a stop to it, after which, when we woke up in the morning, we would don our gas masks and go back to sleep.

Fast forward a bit. Upon redeployment back to Fort Campbell, a large number of soldiers were having varying degrees of breathing issues. Several were sent to a pulmonary specialist at Vanderbilt for testing and investigation. After countless tests and invasive lung biopsies, it was determined that they had a condition known as constrictive bronchiolitis. The symptoms include, but are not limited to, shortness of breath, and occasionally coughing, due to obliterated air sacs in the lungs. It is frequently misdiagnosed as asthma, but there is no airway restriction common to asthma. Asthma medications have little to no effect (unless there is pre-existing asthma), as they open the bronchial tubes, but constrictive bronchiolitis is an issue with the air sacs themselves. There is no cure.

Since 2003, I have had issues with shortness of breath from moderate exertion, snoring and sleep apnea. I didn’t take note of it until a few years later, because of the uncontrolled pain from my back injury. As we found a medication that helped with my back, other issues became more apparent, because I could no longer write them off as being related to the strain from my back pain. In 2015, I was diagnosed officially with sleep apnea and “asthma”, prescribed steroidal inhalers, and a CPAP machine. The meds didn’t help, but the CPAP did help me (and my wife 😉 ) sleep.

Today, I met with the doctor who made the discovery. I had a chest x-ray, pulmonary function tests, exercise while connected to a pulse oximeter, and a CT scan. I’m still waiting on the results of the CT scan, but two things were made abundantly clear; I do not have asthma, and my lung capacity is only at 80%. To be 100% sure of a diagnosis of constrictive bronchiolitis, I will have to undergo invasive lung biopsies. We’ve put that off for now, for at least 6 more months, as it is a major surgical procedure, that will have me down for weeks. Dr. Miller also told me that not only has he discovered this condition with those exposed to the Mishrak sulfur mine fire, but also those heavily exposed to burn pits in Iraq and Afghanistan.

In 2003, before we had port-a-potties, we would build our own outhouses and place them over metal barrels or holes in the ground, and would have to burn our own shit with diesel fuel, to sterilize it before it was dumped into the burn pits, which we then burned. Tens of thousands of us we’re exposed to the Mishrak sulfur mine fire, but many times that number were exposed to the burn pits.

What’s the point of all of this? I don’t know an exact number, nor do I even have an educated estimate, but there are likely countless thousands of us who served in Iraq and Afghanistan who are suffering from this ailment. The Veterans Administration doesn’t even recognize that it exists. Some of us have been denied service connection for our condition. Some of us they have been misdiagnosed. Some of us they have ignored outright. This ends now.

Our country sent us off to fight a war. There are diverse opinions on to it’s legality, morality, execution and conclusion. This isn’t about that. This is about the negligence of our government in not taking precautions, and not even acknowledging and taking care of the result after the fact. Constrictive bronchiolitis from the Mishrak sulfur mine fire and burn pits is the Agent Orange of the Global War on Terrorism. The government must be held accountable.

If you are one of the affected service members, and are exhibiting these symptoms, get checked out. If the VA blows you off, go see a private pulmonary doctor, and take this information with you. If you get a diagnosis of constrictive bronchiolitis, take that to the Veterans Administration, and force them to finally acknowledge this. If you live within driving distance to Nashville, Tennessee, go see Dr. Miller (link below), as he is the foremost expert on this condition.


republished here with permission  of the author David Watson.