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joe breskin
Works at Envirosearch, CH2M Hill, Foresight Science & Technology, City of Port Townsend,
Attended mercer island
Lives in port townsend
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joe breskin

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Thought experiment. Embarrassingly good idea. Have not done the math yet (calculate how much heat is involved in evaporating the LP gas that I consume), to see if it really "works" in my world, but my guess is that it does. In fact, there should be enough heat involved that controlling temperature on the cold side might prove to be a little tricky.   http://contest.techbriefs.com/2013/entries/sustainable-technologies/3792
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Geee ... they found that someone had underestimated the costs and overestimated the benefits. Does that sound at all familiar? 
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I used to write stuff like this, but now I just wait for others to see the problem, and write it ... 
Huws writes: It's a familiar pattern. First there's an economic crisis. Then comes an enormous restructuring of capital - and with it a restructuring of labor - throwing past certainties into doubt.
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This was triggered by an observation (on FB) that many of those holed up in the Malheur (among those who were not in fact FBI agent provocateurs) were probably in fact posers ... 

I ran into an interesting song last night, whose lyrics get close enough to where the stand off in the Malheur is likely headed that it seems like it might be useful. I have not decided it I want to change any of the words, to try to get them to fit a little closer, or more precisely.

https://youtu.be/cVUswuxF-vA?t=25m22s this link takes you to the beginning of the song 26+ minutes into the concert.

It is Bruce Springsteen, singing "I hung my head", a song Sting wrote about killing someone w/o understanding what he was doing, until after it was too late to be undone.

This could easily be a song about when and if one of these guys - one of the posers - shoots a cop or a newsman or a USFWS guy, and then suddenly wakes up to what he has done. That he has made some man's wife a widow or made his children orphans, for no reason at all, beyond feeling the explosion of power that allowed him to do it.

Because this situation is in fact quite a bit different from "wartime" situations, where the differences between the shooters and their targets has been defined in terms of race and culture, or even what we had a few inters ago, when the cops were hurting the demonstrators at Occupy.
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Crazy Horse. We hear what you say
"One Earth, One Mother
One does not sell the Earth the People walk upon"
We are the Land
How do we sell our Mother ?
How do we sell the Stars ?
How do we sell the Air ?
Crazy Horse. We hear what you say
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If you can't see this one, look it up on Youtube. I'd post it here, but I can't get the link to copy.
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"The analysis from the nonpartisan Congressional Research Service finds that last year, almost three-quarters of all advisory committee meetings were closed to the public. While President Barack Obama asserts that he has created “the most transparent administration in history,” the number of closed meetings was the highest percentage in the decade’s worth of data the congressional researchers studied."
http://www.ibtimes.com/political-capital/government-transparency-most-federal-advisory-committee-meetings-now-held-secret
The powerful panels advising the federal government on policy hold most meetings in secret, a report says.
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joe breskin

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These two stories need to be read together. Both are about the problems involved in the regulation and application of a clearly disastrous neonic insecticide named Imidicloprid. And each involves at least one very quotable quote. 

I will lead with the MotherJones piece about how and why the US EPA has finally gotten around to reviewing something they never should have permitted. 
http://www.motherjones.com/tom-philpott/2016/01/epa-finds-major-pesticide-toxic-bees

“The agency still has to consider public comments on the bee assessment it just released, and it also has to complete a risk assessment of imidacloprid's effect on other species. In addition to their impact on bees, neonic pesticides may also harm birds, butterflies, and water-borne invertebrates, recent studies suggest.” 

But the other quote - and my comment on that quote - relates to the second story, the one where the shellfish growers doggedly demand to be allowed to continue to poison literally millions of native creatures in Willapa Bay and Grays Harbor - from the Ghost Shrimp that Gray Whales eat, to Dungeness Crab and waterfowl to make it possible for them to farm their non-native oysters. And it's a poisoning that includes sub-lethal doses administered to the very oysters they will be selling for human consumption.
http://komonews.com/news/komo-4-investigators/oyster-farmers-file-permit-to-use-pesticides-again

“The Department of Ecology has agreed it is safe [last year], but a new permit means new studies and public hearings could change everything. "It may offer some additional risks that we have to take into account. We just don't know," said Rich Doenges with DOE.”

DOE now has to reevaluate and reissue the permit that the growers “pulled” last spring, in the wake of public outrage and restaurateurs' panic when it was revealed that the Bay that had been getting poisoned with a now-banned neurotoxin - Carbaryl - that had lost its EPA registration, and was about to get dosed with a replacement a neurotoxic neonic called Imidicloprid.  

What they did NOT want the public to know was that the mudflats where the non-native Pacific Oysters are grown have been getting sprayed with this stuff since 1963*, and that the stuff - delivered from helicopters as a wettable powder - drifts great distances and poisons its way up and down the entire food-web, killing or damaging everything with a nervous system from the surface of the water to over 3' down (where the native shrimp live) - from sand fleas to salmon - as well as birds and bees, and although the growers describe spraying “empty” oyster beds in sequence, like a crop rotation, the stuff is aerial sprayed on mudflats at low tide and drifts significant distances, affecting everything alive, and since 1984 Carbaryl had been sprayed directly across active oyster beds. Drift covers thousands of additional acres, carried by the tides beyond the target areas, and in its wake dying creatures struggle to the surface to die, where they are picked up and carried off by gulls and crows as well as the smaller shorebirds: dowitchers, dunlins, plovers, turnstones. and whimbrels.

I suspect that the "additional risks" that Rich referred to - are the risks that the public might actually HEAR the real story this time around. 

But maybe not. Last time this story made the papers, it got squashed.

*Pages 5 and 6 of the June 1985 FEIS Titled "Use of the Insecticide SEVIN To Control Ghost Shrimp and Mud Shrimp in Oyster Beds of Willapa Bay and Grays Harbor"  Section 2.1 Background of Sevin Usage 
The agency says it may place new restrictions on the chemical by year's end.
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http://www.hcn.org/articles/the-people-v-the-blm-bundy-hammonds-malheur 

 HCN reports:  "Former federal officials blame the Bureau of Land Management's inaction in the Bundy case for the debacle that’s unfolding in Oregon today. “At the end of the day, most people have a common respect for the law, and with Mr. Bundy, he just believes differently, that he’s above the law,” Bob Abbey, former director of the BLM, told High Country News recently. “The fact that their trespass hasn’t been dealt with in a timely matter reinforced beliefs.” "

But for some odd reason, in their litany of crimes and punishments, HCN has conspicuously omitted ALF/ELF and the reason that the Hammond's arson triggered the federal terrorism charges.

Here is ho the FBI website explains the matter:
"During the past decade we have witnessed dramatic changes in the nature of the terrorist threat. In the 1990s, right-wing extremism overtook left-wing terrorism as the most dangerous domestic terrorist threat to the country. During the past several years, special interest extremism, as characterized by the Animal Liberation Front (ALF) and the Earth Liberation Front (ELF), has emerged as a serious terrorist threat. Generally, extremist groups engage in much activity that is protected by constitutional guarantees of free speech and assembly. Law enforcement becomes involved when the volatile talk of these groups transgresses into unlawful action. The FBI estimates that the ALF/ELF have committed more than 600 criminal acts in the United States since 1996, resulting in damages in excess of 43 million dollars.

Special interest terrorism differs from traditional right-wing and left-wing terrorism in that extremist special interest groups seek to resolve specific issues, rather than effect widespread political change. Special interest extremists continue to conduct acts of politically motivated violence to force segments of society, including the general public, to change attitudes about issues considered important to their causes. These groups occupy the extreme fringes of animal rights, pro-life, environmental, anti-nuclear, and other movements. Some special interest extremists -- most notably within the animal rights and environmental movements -- have turned increasingly toward vandalism and terrorist activity in attempts to further their causes.

Since 1977, when disaffected members of the ecological preservation group Greenpeace formed the Sea Shepherd Conservation Society and attacked commercial fishing operations by cutting drift nets, acts of "eco-terrorism" have occurred around the globe. The FBI defines eco-terrorism as the use or threatened use of violence of a criminal nature against innocent victims or property by an environmentally-oriented, subnational group for environmental-political reasons, or aimed at an audience beyond the target, often of a symbolic nature.

In recent years, the Animal Liberation Front (ALF) has become one of the most active extremist elements in the United States. Despite the destructive aspects of ALF's operations, its operational philosophy discourages acts that harm "any animal, human and nonhuman." Animal rights groups in the United States, including the ALF, have generally adhered to this mandate. The ALF, established in Great Britain in the mid-1970s, is a loosely organized movement committed to ending the abuse and exploitation of animals. The American branch of the ALF began its operations in the late 1970s. Individuals become members of the ALF not by filing paperwork or paying dues, but simply by engaging in "direct action" against companies or individuals who utilize animals for research or economic gain. "Direct action" generally occurs in the form of criminal activity to cause economic loss or to destroy the victims' company operations. The ALF activists have engaged in a steadily growing campaign of illegal activity against fur companies, mink farms, restaurants, and animal research laboratories.

Estimates of damage and destruction in the United States claimed by the ALF during the past ten years, as compiled by national organizations such as the Fur Commission and the National Association for Biomedical Research (NABR), put the fur industry and medical research losses at more than 45 million dollars. The ALF is considered a terrorist group, whose purpose is to bring about social and political change through the use of force and violence.

Disaffected environmentalists, in 1980, formed a radical group called "Earth First!" and engaged in a series of protests and civil disobedience events. In 1984, however, members introduced "tree spiking" (insertion of metal or ceramic spikes in trees in an effort to damage saws) as a tactic to thwart logging. In 1992, the ELF was founded in Brighton, England, by Earth First! members who refused to abandon criminal acts as a tactic when others wished to mainstream Earth First!. In 1993, the ELF was listed for the first time along with the ALF in a communique declaring solidarity in actions between the two groups. This unity continues today with a crossover of leadership and membership. It is not uncommon for the ALF and the ELF to post joint declarations of responsibility for criminal actions on their web-sites. In 1994, founders of the San Francisco branch of Earth First! published in The Earth First! Journal a recommendation that Earth First! mainstream itself in the United States, leaving criminal acts other than unlawful protests to the ELF.

The ELF advocates "monkeywrenching," a euphemism for acts of sabotage and property destruction against industries and other entities perceived to be damaging to the natural environment. "Monkeywrenching" includes tree spiking, arson, sabotage of logging or construction equipment, and other types of property destruction. Speeches given by Jonathan Paul and Craig Rosebraugh at the 1998 National Animal Rights Conference held at the University of Oregon, promoted the unity of both the ELF and the ALF movements. The ELF posted information on the ALF website until it began its own website in January 2001, and is listed in the same underground activist publications as the ALF.

The most destructive practice of the ALF/ELF is arson. The ALF/ELF members consistently use improvised incendiary devices equipped with crude but effective timing mechanisms. These incendiary devices are often constructed based upon instructions found on the ALF/ELF websites. The ALF/ELF criminal incidents often involve pre-activity surveillance and well-planned operations. Members are believed to engage in significant intelligence gathering against potential targets, including the review of industry/trade publications, photographic/video surveillance of potential targets, and posting details about potential targets on the internet.

The ALF and the ELF have jointly claimed credit for several raids including a November 1997 attack of the Bureau of Land Management wild horse corrals near Burns, Oregon, where arson destroyed the entire complex resulting in damages in excess of four hundred and fifty thousand dollars and the June 1998 arson attack of a U.S. Department of Agriculture Animal Damage Control Building near Olympia, Washington, in which damages exceeded two million dollars. The ELF claimed sole credit for the October 1998, arson of a Vail, Colorado, ski facility in which four ski lifts, a restaurant, a picnic facility and a utility building were destroyed. Damage exceeded $12 million. On 12/27/1998, the ELF claimed responsibility for the arson at the U.S. Forest Industries Office in Medford, Oregon, where damages exceeded five hundred thousand dollars. Other arsons in Oregon, New York, Washington, Michigan, and Indiana have been claimed by the ELF. Recently, the ELF has also claimed attacks on genetically engineered crops and trees. The ELF claims these attacks have totaled close to $40 million in damages."
A look at how the feds have — and have not — punished individuals for defying regulations.
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Idea looks right, but the price looks wrong. How to fix this?
http://www.empowermentplan.org/#!the-coat/cass
The Empowerment Plan is a Detroit non-profit that hires previously homeless women to make sleeping bag coats for homeless people.
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Something we can all aspire to:

"A new internet code inspired by the dystopian writings of Ray Bradbury aims to let users know when websites are unavailable because they have been censored by the state—Error Code 451.

The Internet Engineering Steering Group (IESG), a global body which reviews internet standards, on Monday approved the XML specification, which can be used to alert users when requested content has been blocked by "legal obstacles," typically government censorship. Tim Bray, a former Google engineer and co-author of the code, suggested the term in 2012 as a reference to Bradbury's Fahrenheit 451, a 1953 novel in which books are outlawed and burned—an allegory for state suppression of free speech.

"[A]s censorship became more visible and prevalent on the Web, we started to hear from sites that they'd like to be able to make this distinction," wrote IETF HTTP Working Group chair Mark Nottingham in a blog post last week. "More importantly, we started to hear from members of the community that they wanted to be able to discover instances of censorship in an automated fashion."

http://www.commondreams.org/news/2015/12/22/error-451-new-dystopian-internet-code-very-important-meaning
A new internet code inspired by the dystopian writings of Ray Bradbury aims to let users know when websites are unavailable because they have been censored by the state—Error Code 451.
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Here is a gorgeous and information-packed movie that will available online for a few more days. Highly recommended. It is what I am doing for my head this evening. http://www.symphonyofthesoil.com/
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JEFFY FRESH APPROVES THIS MESSAGE!

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This is a MUST READ piece.

"At around 5:45 PM, about 15 minutes before the presentation was going to start, 100+ Monsanto employees, all dressed in neon yellow shirts, arrived.

As I stared at the long line of workers, men and women of all colors and ages and sizes, entering the building, there was a moment when I wanted to walk away. I walked to the bathroom and sat with my face in my hands. I am not brave enough for this confrontation. I am not the right person to deliver this message. I am not strong enough for the yelling and fighting that will likely ensue."

Also : please see VERY interesting comment/dissection of this piece by an industry oriented blogger, linked in my first comment below.
 
Modern Farmers face Serious Health Hazards
How did we end up here?
"Workers exposed to restricted use pesticides have higher rates of chronic diseases such as bladder and colon cancer[i], Non-Hodgkin’s lymphoma[ii],[iii],[iv],[v], Parkinson’s disease[vi],[vii],[viii] ,[ix], and depression[x] ,[xi],[xii]. Children who live in and around agricultural operations like those owned by Monsanto and Dow are vulnerable to chronic, low-level exposure to restricted used pesticides that drift from GE test fields on a weekly basis. In utero and early life, children are at a risk of neurodevelopmental disabilities like autism and ADHD[xiii],[xiv],[xv],[xvi], leukemia[xvii],[xviii],[xix], and asthma[xx],[xxi],[xxii]."
By Ashley Lukens for Center For Food Safety - On Oct 14th, I presented the findings of our Pesticides in Paradise report on the island of Moloka‘i. At around 5:45 PM, about 15 minutes before the pr...
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The video of the meeting (available on YouTube) is in many ways more informative than either side's blog post. 
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Education
  • mercer island
    develop immune system, 1953 - 1965
  • university of washington
    ethnomusicology, ethology, physiological psychology, 1965 - 1973
Basic Information
Gender
Male
Story
Tagline
I can fix anything but your broken heart or your organization that is falling apart
Introduction
Putting it in point-blank terms: I am here hoping to find people who I can play with, build teams with, have mutually enlightening conversations with, do amazing things with. 
 
If I post something, I care enough to dig back and find the source. If I have time I try to add context, and let you know WHY something matters to me or why I think something might matter to you. There are a lot of demands on my time in meatspace so sometimes I just don't have time to post every fascinating thing that crosses my path.

For example - I am currently designing a heat pump based soil heating system 
for a commercial greenhouse operation - a system that for most of the year will simultaneously provide the majority of the chill needed for their cold storage facility and the goal is to have it up and running by the first of the year.   

I don't follow a lot of people and I really only post publicly,  Generally I add folks who post interesting stuff that I have not seen elsewhere already or gets closer to the source than the other posts I've seen.  

I have already done a lot of things in my life, but I am gambling that I have time for at least one more BIG project, so I am designing a low-cost, easy-to-manufacture permanently affordable "zero energy house" that actually works in this challenging climate. It is unabashedly low-tech but is based on several highly detailed computer models of airflow and heatflux and leverages work done decades and in some cases centuries ago. Design integrates
cheap, relatively low temperature heat storage, multiple loop thermosiphons, trickledown open loop SDHW collectors, air heaters, and multistage heat recovery at every exit point, avoiding PV, wind, and other high cost and high embodied energy technologies entirely. Also working on a compost powered "living machine" aquaponics system based on black soldier flies.  

For the past 18 months I have been derailed into a black hole attempting to stop a hedge-fund's biomass waste-to-energy cogeneration incinerator project that has captured the regulators at all levels, state and local, while holding the employees of the largest private employer in the community hostage, basically implying that if they can't use taxpayers $$ to increase airborne toxics nearly 3X, chew up the local forests, and import construction and demolition debris to burn to sell for "green power" RECs and PTCs so they can export $$ they will shut down and leave the employees and the community twisting in the wind. 

In an earlier life, I helped build a successful commercialization thinktank (that's still going strong) that cherry-picks useful technologies from the federal labs and independent R&D labs and finds good homes for them in industry,  And before that I did policy work for local government and before that did a software startup developing scientific visualization tools and before that I built a LOT of interesting stuff: huge auditorium soundsystems and seakayaks, and a bunch of big custom sailboats including a few that sailed nearly around the world and one that has gone around twice, 
Bragging rights
Saved/protected the watersheds of two rivers on the Olympic Peninsula from logging and saved a community from having to spend USD $15 million on a water treatment plant they did not need. Directed a bunch of Federal money into watershed storm-proofing, the first projects on the Olympic to do prevention instead of post-disaster repairs. Projects based on sidecast haulback and culvert removal. Saved the estuary of Chimacum Creek from development. Wrote a "smart" building code for a temporary city called Oregon Country Fair which is the literally the fifth largest city in Oregon one weekend a year. Did a lot of "swords into plowshares" work - finding socially useful commercial applications for technologies developed at the federal labs before the Bush coup turned us back into a war-based economy. Played World-fusion Chamber Rock in NYC in the Winter of '66 and Acid Rock in Seattle the Summer of Love in 1967. And have I fixed an awful lot of stuff that other people who claim to be good fixers have broken: software hardware mis-communications, you name it. I have also failed to turn around some organizations that really needed to be turned around, and I am currently seen as a pariah by a lot of people who will thank me for what i am doing, eventually.
Work
Occupation
Senior Generalist, Engineering Design Consultant, public policy wonk and general purpose pariah. I also fix complex interesting things that don't work.
Employment
  • Envirosearch, CH2M Hill, Foresight Science & Technology, City of Port Townsend,
    CTO, Architect and Visionary, 1991 - present
  • joe breskin design
    engineering design consultant, 1976 - present
  • Seven Seas Boat Works
    General Manager, 1976 - 1988
  • Seven Seas Software
    CFO, 1983 - 1989
Places
Map of the places this user has livedMap of the places this user has livedMap of the places this user has lived
Currently
port townsend
Previously
mercer island - seattle, new york city
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