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 Food Watch

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PostSubject: Re: Food Watch   Thu May 29, 2008 6:01 pm

The food crisis meets the fuel crisis today (source Breakingnews.ie)

Fuel protesters in France today blockaded oil terminals and clashed with police.

Hundreds of farmers used tractors to bar the entrance to terminals in regions near Dijon in eastern France and Toulouse in the south.

Their protest built on more than two weeks of demonstrations and port disruptions by French fishermen demanding that the government guarantee an affordable fixed fuel rate.

Meanwhile fishermen in the Atlantic port town of Lorient fired flares at police after they broke up a crowd of demonstrators.

Fishermen in Portugal, Spain and Italy plan a strike tomorrow over fuel prices.

Should non-essential use of oil be stopped?
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PostSubject: Re: Food Watch   Thu May 29, 2008 9:41 pm

cactus flower wrote:


Should non-essential use of oil be stopped?

What would you describe as non-essential?
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PostSubject: Re: Food Watch   Thu May 29, 2008 10:01 pm

Ard-Taoiseach wrote:
cactus flower wrote:


Should non-essential use of oil be stopped?

What would you describe as non-essential?

Using oil to heat bikini wax oil... for men.
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PostSubject: Re: Food Watch   Thu May 29, 2008 10:27 pm

Ard-Taoiseach wrote:
cactus flower wrote:


Should non-essential use of oil be stopped?

What would you describe as non-essential?

The problemo with this is that it would collapse the economy upon which so many depend... i.e, restrict flying and half of North County Dublin is out of work. Knock on effects on mortgages and such like. Credit crunches, bank runs, pension fund collapses... sadly, one has to keep the current system juddering along for long enough that adaptations can be made slowly, more people will suffer if we don't. One lesson of the 70s oil shocks was that stuff that went along with the markets worked (increasing fuel economy), rationing and subsidizing didn't (bad economic damage, presumably to Govt. financing, since the subsidies had to come from somewhere

We need serious planning and infrastructural re-alignment in order to adapt to this new reality. Stalinist 5 year plans and all of that. However, Cowen and Co. Ltd need to align the National Development Plan with the new reality... airport expansions and new roads, if not yet started, would now be a waste of money.

as for farming/food production; we need a heavy horse breeding programme as I think the only way of decoupling oil from food is to take the tractors out of livestock farming, at the very least. Irish beef, raised as it is on grass/hay/silage could soon be very cheap in comparison with cereals, and beef farms can be managed mostly with a horse and cart (foddering in the winter, was done on smaller farms until the 80s). But horses have a 1 year gestation period... there's a time lag. We will need something to do the heavy lifting (and horse operated machinery for hay cutting etc (back to hay, the plastic they wrap the silage in is made from oil).

The big flaw with the "we must all eat cereals" brigade is that cereal production in the West is highly mechanised...oil, again. Although with all the heaps of unemployed ensuing from the ever deepening recession, perhaps we will have a ready source of ag labour.

Ireland has a number of advantages though; only one land border with the North and a large agricultural surplus , although we'd have to get used to a seasonal diet and a LOT of meat. Refridgeration and storage will be a problem; we'll have to get used to fresh local supplies and a limited repertoire
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PostSubject: Re: Food Watch   Thu May 29, 2008 10:30 pm

Recreational driving, recreational flying, boating, interior space heating higher than 20 degrees, non-shared commutes. That's just non-investment stuff.

Investment could cut oil consumption for space heating to less than half what it is now through installing condenser boilers, solar and insulation.

I like the horse suggestion - Coillte only stopped using them in the 1990s for forestry and we used them here into the 1960s for ploughing. None of what needs to be done is rocket science - look at the Danes with their wind powered car project.

Food production seems to me to be the top priority. There will obviously need to be big longer term adjustments, but as there is a pinch point and masses of people are going hungry we need to do something about it.
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PostSubject: Re: Food Watch   Thu May 29, 2008 10:56 pm

cactus flower wrote:
Recreational driving, recreational flying, boating, interior space heating higher than 20 degrees, non-shared commutes. That's just non-investment stuff.


You're right there, also, a lot of cars are just left idling by their owners while they pop into the shops-that'll be happening less and less as we go further into the future.

I don't think johnfás will be happy with you saying boating is non-essential! Wink
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PostSubject: Re: Food Watch   Fri May 30, 2008 12:07 am

He can get a sail Very Happy Oh yes, and ban jet skis please AT.
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PostSubject: Re: Food Watch   Fri May 30, 2008 12:14 am

cactus flower wrote:
He can get a sail Very Happy Oh yes, and ban jet skis please AT.

True, that's it, low-tech all the way. The 21st Century is the new 19th and all that.

Ban jet skis?!?! But they're there by the grace of God! Yeh cannae be bannin' the Loords doing!*

*plus Queen Beatrix of Holland thinks I look quite dashing jet-skiing. I'll not be banning it!
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PostSubject: Re: Food Watch   Fri May 30, 2008 3:00 am

Stalin's 5 year plan sounds good but why do we need horses. All Stalin needed was 2 good women like yourselves to pull any plough. Giddy Up Ladies.
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PostSubject: Re: Food Watch   Fri May 30, 2008 9:21 am

youngdan wrote:
Stalin's 5 year plan sounds good but why do we need horses. All Stalin needed was 2 good women like yourselves to pull any plough. Giddy Up Ladies.

When you've done away with government and society, youngdan, you'll be sitting in your cave, clutching your rifle with no ammo, and wish you were facing into a nice Irish breakfast instead of yesterday's cold bone.
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