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Author Topic:   Winter: Baby, It's Cold Outside!
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Message 7 of 188 (904242)
12-23-2022 1:25 PM
Reply to: Message 3 by ringo
12-23-2022 11:52 AM

Born and raised in Southern California (just south of LA), I served for five years in the cold part of North Dakota -- Grand Forks AFB where arctic air masses would come down from Canada and sit on us (and on International Falls, MN). Needless to say, I got acclimated:
  1. At the end of winter when the temperature soared to a searing 33°F, I had to remove my gloves and open up my parka because it was just too damned hot. In Frat Row across the street from the university, the roofs were covered with frat rats in bathing suits soaking up the sun. At 33°F.
  2. When I returned home to start my civilian career, I had to re-acclimate to So.Calif. It was a 20 minute drive in a car without A/C from work in an air conditioned office to home where we had A/C. In the So.Calif. winter that drive would leave me exhausted from the heat.
  3. When my son left for college, he went to the University of North Dakota (UND) where we had attended. When he graduated in December the whole family attended. The temperature when we arrived was about 24°F. My mother-in-law who was always cold here was all bundled up in a quilted jacket with hood and gloves and she was freezing. As we were walking towards a Big Lots, we saw a pickup park and a woman in jeans and a t-shirt got out and walked calmly into the store. My poor mother-in-law just stood there in shock, "How can she do that? How is it even possible?"
  4. My son eventually ended up in Dickinson which is in the warm part of ND. His wife, who was from Florida, talked him into their moving to Florida. When I visited him, he kept the air conditioning so high that I had to wear a jacket indoors. Guess his acclimation to Florida was rough and still in progress.
  5. Earlier when I was stationed at Keesler AFB (on the Gulf Coast in Biloxi) for tech school, we arrived just after midnight on New Year's Day. In the morning, I looked out at our car and it had icicles hanging from it. Part of our problem trying to stay warm was because the apartment was not designed for cold weather.
    BTW, later in that Gulf Coast winter it snowed. For a full 20 minutes leaving snow drifts nearly an inch high. The locals didn't know how to handle it.
We who have lived through cold weather routinely know how to deal with it and to dress for it, plus being acclimated to it. Acclimation can take months if not a couple of years, so sudden out-of-the-norm cold weather would require dressing for it. Assuming that they even have the clothes, which they likely will not because they've never needed them before.
There's also the houses. Most houses in Grand Forks were as close to cubes as they could get. That would minimize surface area to volume, which is important since the outside surface of the house is where you lose most of the heat. A traditional California design, the ranch-style house, which is a long sprawling single-story house, would be nearly impossible to keep heated. Storm windows or double-pane windows (or stapling plastic sheets over the windows) also help to reduce heat loss -- Florida also has storm windows, but they're panels of plywood to protect the windows in a hurricane.
Another typical feature in ND buildings was the air lock. The entrances of every store or office building had two sets of doors so that the building interior would never be exposed to the outside. Even the houses had that feature with their enclosed front porches; in many, that would also serve as a mud porch where you could take off your boots and change into your house shoes. In the big cities, revolving doors serve the same purpose. And I seem to recall that Café Sperl in Vienna also had an air lock.
{ ABE:
Refer to the German Wikipedia page, Café Sperl. The second photo, „Innenansicht“ ("interior view"), shows the entrance from the inside. Click on that photo to enlarge it and you will see a glass-enclosed antechamber forming its airlock.
BTW, if you eat breakfast there and you order the "French Toast" from the English menu, you will get something very different from what you expect (ie, not American French Toast, nor British eggy-toast, nor French pain perdu, nor German Arme Ritter), but rather literal slices of toast each with a slice of ham and Brie cheese (it's toast and it's French). My friend made that mistake.
Our units in base housing did not have airlocks, which I assume was because multiple bases used the same architectural plans which did not take such local needs into account. And my son's house in Dickenson also did not have airlocks, but then that was in the balmy part of the state.
In addition, public utilities and services (eg, snow removal, emergency services, power grids) in cold regions have been designed for such temperature extremes unlike in warmer regions -- just look at how power in the entire state of Texas crumpled in the face of cold weather.
The point of that is that regions and people being affected are just not ready for these conditions.

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 Message 3 by ringo, posted 12-23-2022 11:52 AM ringo has replied

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Message 9 of 188 (904250)
12-23-2022 3:42 PM
Reply to: Message 5 by AZPaul3
12-23-2022 12:02 PM

This is what people come here for - absolutely gorgeous. And dry.
Yes, it's a dry cold.
But seriously, humidity makes a difference.
We arrived in North Dakota in July -- standard joke: "There actually are four seasons in North Dakota: June, July, August, and Winter" (though we were about to learn that that's not a joke). We were also told that it would only snow in the beginning and end of winter and that during winter it would be too cold to snow (which also turned out to be true).
Humidity in a ND winter is low. Cold air cannot hold much water vapor. Then when you take that air inside and heat it, humidity drops even more -- a common attachment to furnaces is a humidifier to add humidity to the indoor air.
My mother's mother lived near Peoria, Ill.. My mother told me that whenever she came out to visit for Christmas she would always complain about it being so cold in Southern California, even though it was a lot colder in Peoria. But our cold weather would come with rainy weather, so our cold would be a wet cold which felt worse, whereas Peoria had a drier cold which didn't feel as bad.

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Message 41 of 188 (904436)
12-30-2022 3:14 AM
Reply to: Message 40 by Phat
12-30-2022 1:33 AM

Re: Midwest unprepared
In short, an authoritarian government.
WHAT??? YOU STILL HAVE NOT YET READ The Authoritarians??????????????
You still have no fucking clue what authoritarianism even is?
It really is an easy and interesting read. So read it already! (Uh! Sorry! Too Jewish for your right-wing-assholetarian taste?)
Bob Altemeyer constructed a Right-Wing Authoritarian (RWA) spectrum with sets of survey questions to place an individual on that scale. Also, "right wing" has nothing to do with politics, since even an extreme left-wing mentality could score high on the RWA scale.
High-RWAs react to strong negative emotions of fear and hatred. They fall immediately into lock-step with any cause that identifies itself as theirs. Their mentality is very strongly them-versus-us, which plays very heavily on casting "the others" as threats (eg, the endless "culture wars" that the Right keeps fabricating). If a leader presents himself as believing in the same things that high-RWAs believe, then they immediately accept that leader.
Low-RWAs actually think about things, which makes them harder to organize -- for imagery, just think of trying to herd cats as opposed to the high-RWA sheeple. If you tell low-RWAs that you believe the same things they do, then they will not believe you and will invariably question you.
Read the fucking book, you idiot!

This message is a reply to:
 Message 40 by Phat, posted 12-30-2022 1:33 AM Phat has replied

Replies to this message:
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Message 52 of 188 (904568)
01-01-2023 7:20 PM
Reply to: Message 48 by marc9000
01-01-2023 4:32 PM

Re: Midwest unprepared
DWise1 writes:
Bob Altemeyer constructed a Right-Wing Authoritarian (RWA) spectrum with sets of survey questions to place an individual on that scale. Also, "right wing" has nothing to do with politics, since even an extreme left-wing mentality could score high on the RWA scale.
Couldn't you summarize it, condense it, and post it here rather than just saying to read an entire book?
Already done in my Message 219 where I had recommended to Phat that he read that excellent book in order to finally learn what authoritarianism actually is. He keeps using that word but I don't think it means what he thinks it means.
Since you are expressing refusal to follow a link, here is that Message 219 (including the link for the free copies):
DWise1 writes:
[to Phat:] You keep misrepresenting what authoritarianism is. Please learn what it actually is.
Bob Altemeyer is a now-retired psychology professor who specialized in authoritarianism. Most of his papers used a lot of math and statistical analysis, so he wrote his book, The Authoritarians, in a form that is much more accessible to the average reader.
He also made it as freely available as possible (at the link I just provided). I have the PDF edition, but it's also in a few e-Reader formats as well as audio. It's an interesting and fairly easy read.
A word of advice about reading it: READ THE FOOTNOTES. Some of the most interesting information is in the footnotes, despite his self-deprecating comments about how masochistic you would need to be to read the footnotes.
Please do most definitely add this to your reading list.
In 2020, Altemeyer co-authored a book with John Dean (of Watergate infamy), Authoritarian Nightmare. When he wrote The Authoritarians in 2006, "Dubya" Bush was the worst US president he had ever seen. Now that distinction goes to Trump.
Another book to add is Timothy Snyder's On Tyranny: Twenty Lessons from the Twentieth Century.
How long is the set of survey questions, couldn't you show us?
I had mentioned that in order to emphasize that it's not a starkly binary black-or-white authoritarian/non-authoritarian, but rather a spectrum of how authoritarian one could be (IOW, lots of gray). Hence you have high-RWAs (right wing authoritarians) and low-RWAs and lots of those who are in-between (and he found that our scores change over time).
You already have your link to your very own free copy so you are fully capable of reading them for yourself. The first one measures one's RWA score while the other questionnaires determine one's beliefs, value systems, etc, which Altemeyer could then correlate with RWA scores (all his published papers were thick with statistical analysis, which is why he wrote this book):
  • Pages 10-14, 22 questions. The basic RWA questionnaire.
  • Page 23, 6 questions.
  • Page 24, 6 questions.
  • Pages 54-55, 6 questions.
  • Pages 59-60, 8 questions.
  • Page 79.
  • Page 84.
  • Page 88.
  • Page 92.
  • Pages 106-107, 12 questions for correlating Christian fundamentalism with RWAism.
  • Page 113.
  • Page 124-125, 12 questions for measuring levels of zealotry.
There, I've done enough of your work for you. All of which is pearls cast before swine (ie, you) since you will never bother to act on that bibliography, so why should I even bother? Because others can read it and benefit from having done so.
But since you will refuse to go read it for yourself, here's the first questionnaire from pages 10-14:
The RWA Scale
The what? The Right-Wing Authoritarianism scale. Get out a pencil. I’m going to take you into the inner sanctum of a personality test. Just don’t be FRIGHTENED!
Below is the latest version of the RWA scale. Read the instructions carefully, and then write down your response to each statement on a sheet of paper numbered
This survey is part of an investigation of general public opinion concerning a variety of social issues.
You will probably find that you agree with some of the statements, and disagree with others, to varying
extents. Please indicate your reaction to each statement on the line to the left of each item according
to the following scale:
Write down a -4 if you very strongly disagree with the statement.
Write down a -3 if you strongly disagree with the statement.
Write down a -2 if you moderately disagree with the statement.
Write down a -1 if you slightly disagree with the statement.
Write down a +1 if you slightly agree with the statement.
Write down a +2 if you moderately agree with the statement.
Write down a +3 if you strongly agree with the statement.
Write down a +4 if you very strongly agree with the statement.
If you feel exactly and precisely neutral about an item, write down a “0."
(“Dr. Bob” to reader: We’ll probably stay friends longer if you read this paragraph.) Important: You
may find that you sometimes have different reactions to different parts of a statement. For example,
you might very strongly disagree (“-4") with one idea in a statement, but slightly agree (“+1") with
another idea in the same item. When this happens, please combine your reactions, and write down how
you feel on balance (a “-3" in this case).
  1. ___ The established authorities generally turn out to be right about things, while the radicals and protestors are usually just “loud mouths” showing off their ignorance.
  2. ___ Women should have to promise to obey their husbands when they get married.
  3. ___ Our country desperately needs a mighty leader who will do what has to be done to destroy the radical new ways and sinfulness that are ruining us.
  4. ___ Gays and lesbians are just as healthy and moral as anybody else.
  5. ___ It is always better to trust the judgment of the proper authorities in government and religion than to listen to the noisy rabble-rousers in our society who are trying to create doubt in people’s minds
  6. ___ Atheists and others who have rebelled against the established religions are no doubt every bit as good and virtuous as those who attend church regularly.
  7. ___ The only way our country can get through the crisis ahead is to get back to our traditional values, put some tough leaders in power, and silence the troublemakers spreading bad ideas.
  8. ___ There is absolutely nothing wrong with nudist camps.
  9. ___ Our country needs free thinkers who have the courage to defy traditional ways, even if this upsets many people.
  10. ___ Our country will be destroyed someday if we do not smash the perversions eating away at our moral fiber and traditional beliefs.
  11. ___ Everyone should have their own lifestyle, religious beliefs, and sexual preferences, even if it makes them different from everyone else.
  12. ___ The “old-fashioned ways” and the “old-fashioned values” still show the best way to live.
  13. ___ You have to admire those who challenged the law and the majority’s view by protesting for women’s abortion rights, for animal rights, or to abolish school prayer.
  14. ___ What our country really needs is a strong, determined leader who will crush evil, and take us back to our true path.
  15. ___ Some of the best people in our country are those who are challenging our government, criticizing religion, and ignoring the “normal way things are supposed to be done.”
  16. ___ God’s laws about abortion, pornography and marriage must be strictly followed before it is too late, and those who break them must be strongly punished.
  17. ___ There are many radical, immoral people in our country today, who are trying to ruin it for their own godless purposes, whom the authorities should put out of action.
  18. ___ A “woman’s place” should be wherever she wants to be. The days when women are submissive to their husbands and social conventions belong strictly in the past.
  19. ___ Our country will be great if we honor the ways of our forefathers, do what the authorities tell us to do, and get rid of the “rotten apples” who are ruining everything.
  20. ___ There is no “ONE right way” to live life; everybody has to create their own way.
  21. ___ Homosexuals and feminists should be praised for being brave enough to defy “traditional family values.
  22. ___ This country would work a lot better if certain groups of troublemakers would just shut up and accept their group’s traditional place in society.
Done them all, as best you could? Then let’s score your answers, and get an idea of whether you’re cut out to be an authoritarian follower. First, you can skip your
answers to the first two statements. They don’t count. I put those items on the test to give people some experience with the -4 to +4 response system. They’re just “warmups.” Start therefore with No. 3.
If you wrote down a “-4” that’s scored as a 1.
If you wrote down a “-3" that’s scored as a 2.
If you wrote down a “-2" that’s scored as a 3.
If you wrote down a “-1" that’s scored as a 4.
If you wrote down a “0" or left the item unanswered, that’s scored as a 5.
If you wrote down a “+1" that’s scored as a 6.
If you wrote down a “+2" that’s scored as a 7.
If you wrote down a “+3" that’s scored as an 8.
If you wrote down a “+4" that’s scored as a 9.
Your answers to Items 5, 7, 10, 12, 14, 16, 17, 19 and 22 are scored the same way.
Now we’ll do the rest of your answers, starting with No. 4.
If you wrote down a “-4" that’s scored as a 9.
If you wrote down a “-3" that’s scored as an 8.
If you wrote down a “-2" that’s scored as a 7.
If you wrote down a “-1" that’s scored as a 6.
If you wrote down a “0" or left the item unanswered, that’s scored as a 5.
If you wrote down a “+1" that’s scored as a 4.
If you wrote down a “+2" that’s scored as a 3.
If you wrote down a “+3" that’s scored as a 2.
If you wrote down a “+4" that’s scored as a 1.
Now simply add up your twenty scores. The lowest total possible would be 20, and the highest, 180, but real scores are almost never that extreme. Introductory psychology students at my Canadian university average about 75. Their parents average about 90. Both scores are below the mid-point of the scale, which is 100, so most people in these groups are not authoritarian followers in absolute terms. Neither are most Americans, it seems. Mick McWilliams and Jeremy Keil administered the RWA scale to a reasonably representative sample of 1000 Americans in 2005 for the Libertarian Party and discovered an average score of 90. Thus the Manitoba parent samples seem similar in overall authoritarianism to a representative American adult sample. My Manitoba students score about the same on the RWA scale as most
American university students do too.
So, how did you score?
Is the book only about Trump and January 6th?
Bob Altemeyer wrote the book in 2006, so what do you think? Try not to strain your brain on that trick question.
As I did clearly state in Message 219 (reposted above):
DWise1 writes:
In 2020, Altemeyer co-authored a book with John Dean (of Watergate infamy), Authoritarian Nightmare. When he wrote The Authoritarians in 2006, "Dubya" Bush was the worst US president he had ever seen. Now that distinction goes to Trump.
That new book does deal with Trump, though they had submitted the manuscript to the publisher on 26 Jun 2020 and Altemeyer's review of theirs and other books about the Trump Administration was written on 08 Oct 2020 (before the election, even). BTW, that link to Authoritarian Nightmare takes you to that review.
I haven't read the latest book yet, but I'm sure that it analyzes some of the MAGAt dumbfuckery that keeps getting ever worse.
BTW, it was John Dean who in 2006 urged Altemeyer to write The Authoritarians; read the Acknowledgements.
Does it contain an LWA spectrum also?
That is a most incredibly stupid and ignorant question. There's no such thing as a "LWA spectrum"! Please make an enormous life-style change and learn something about what you're pontificating about! You will be amazed at how much good it will do you to know what you are talking about.
What did I already tell you (which you even went so far as to quote in your "reply"!)?
Yet again, not as if you would bother to read it:
DWise1 writes:
Bob Altemeyer constructed a Right-Wing Authoritarian (RWA) spectrum with sets of survey questions to place an individual on that scale. Also, "right wing" has nothing to do with politics, since even an extreme left-wing mentality could score high on the RWA scale.
Also above in this reply:
DWise1 writes:
I had mentioned that in order to emphasize that it's not a starkly binary black-or-white authoritarian/non-authoritarian, but rather a spectrum of how authoritarian one could be (IOW, lots of gray). Hence you have high-RWAs (right wing authoritarians) and low-RWAs and lots of those who are in-between (and he found that our scores change over time).
It's called the RWA spectrum because that's what it measures. And as Altemeyer explains himself, it has absolutely nothing to do with politics (except that MAGAts and other Republicans tend to be high-RWA and Democrats low-RWA).
As Bob Altemeyer himself wrote (starting on page 9):
Right-Wing and Left-Wing Authoritarian Followers
Authoritarian followers usually support the established authorities in their society, such as government officials and traditional religious leaders. Such people have historically been the “proper” authorities in life, the time-honored, entitled, customary leaders, and that means a lot to most authoritarians. Psychologically these followers have personalities featuring:
1) a high degree of submission to the established, legitimate authorities in their society;
2) high levels of aggression in the name of their authorities; and
3) a high level of conventionalism.
Because the submission occurs to traditional authority, I call these followers rightwing authoritarians. I’m using the word “right” in one of its earliest meanings, for in Old English “riht”(pronounced “writ”) as an adjective meant lawful, proper, correct, doing what the authorities said. (And when someone did the lawful thing back then, maybe the authorities said, with a John Wayne drawl, “You got that riht, pilgrim!”)
In North America people who submit to the established authorities to extraordinary degrees often turn out to be political conservatives, so you can call them “right-wingers” both in my new-fangled psychological sense and in the usual political sense as well. But someone who lived in a country long ruled by Communists and who ardently supported the Communist Party would also be one of my psychological right-wing authoritarians even though we would also say he was a political left-winger. So a right-wing authoritarian follower doesn’t necessarily have conservative political views. Instead he’s someone who readily submits to the established authorities in society, attacks others in their name, and is highly conventional. It’s an aspect of his personality, not a description of his politics. Rightwing authoritarianism is a personality trait, like being characteristically bashful or happy or grumpy or dopey.
You could have left-wing authoritarian followers as well, who support a revolutionary leader who wants to overthrow the establishment. I knew a few in the 1970s, Marxist university students who constantly spouted their chosen authorities, Lenin or Trotsky or Chairman Mao. Happily they spent most of their time fighting with each other, as lampooned in Monty Python’s Life of Brian where the People’s Front of Judea devotes most of its energy to battling, not the Romans, but the Judean People’s Front. But the left-wing authoritarians on my campus disappeared long ago. Similarly in America “the Weathermen” blew away in the wind. I’m sure one can find left-wing authoritarians here and there, but they hardly exist in sufficient numbers now to threaten democracy in North America. However I have found bucketfuls of right-wing authoritarians in nearly every sample I have drawn in Canada and the United States for the past three decades. So when I speak of “authoritarian followers” in this book I mean right-wing authoritarian followers, as identified by the RWA scale.

Are you starting to understand now?
For the benefit of those who do decide to read the book (which you would never consider), read the footnotes! Even though he calls you masochistic for doing so, some of the best and most interesting material is in the footnotes.

This message is a reply to:
 Message 48 by marc9000, posted 01-01-2023 4:32 PM marc9000 has replied

Replies to this message:
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Posts: 5991
Joined: 05-02-2006
Member Rating: 3.2

Message 60 of 188 (904604)
01-02-2023 1:01 PM
Reply to: Message 54 by Phat
01-02-2023 8:16 AM

Re: Midwest unprepared
Actually, I have read that book [ie, The Authoritarians], but not in some time.
Then you need to reread those parts that you have completely forgotten; eg:
  • What authoritarianism actually is.
  • Characteristics of high-RWAs contrasted with low-RWAs; eg:
    1. High-RWAs operate almost constantly on fear and hate. While everybody experiences and reacts through fear at one time or another, high-RWAs do so almost constantly such that they are forever surrounded by horrific existential threats like people saying "Happy Holidays". I seem to recall it was Roger Ailes who described the FOX News content that he wanted to see as "whatever would scare your grandfather."
    2. High-RWAs divide the world between "us" and "them" while viewing "them" as the mortal enemies of "us".
    3. While authoritarian leaders are normally not high-RWA, they do turn to high-RWA followers as "low-hanging fruit" who are so easy to organize into an army of mindless sheeple who will follow you anywhere.
      "Tell a high-RWA that you believe in what he does and he'll believe you and follow you. Tell that to a low-RWA and he will not believe you." That is why Republicans (typically high-RWA) will follow Dear Leader to the end, whereas Democrats (typically low-RWA) are nearly as hard to herd than cats.
      "Republicans fall in lock-step. Democrats fall in love."
    4. Low-RWAs tend to view others in society as being fellow members of that society, holding the view that we are all in the same boat so we all need to work together for our common goals and benefit. High-RWAs view others in society as the "them" enemy and conduct themselves accordingly.
      NOTE: high-RWAs tend to seek to punish the victims of wrong-doing or disasters. Consider Republicans voting against aid for hurricane victims in Puerto Rico and NY/NJ (Hurricane Sandy), whereas Democrats vote for hurricane disaster aid for red states. Also in the beginning of the pandemic when ventilators and PPE were in short supply and desperately needed, the Republicans used the situation as an opportunity to punish the blue coastal states where the first waves were hitting first.
I have to run some errands so I have to cut this short. The point still remains that almost everything you have been writing tells us that you either have completely forgotten what you had learned from The Authoritarians ... or else you had never learned anything in the first place.
I'll repost from the book the world management simulation Altemeyer's son was involved in, so Altemeyer used game applicants' RWA scores to have one run staffed with high-RWAs and a second with low-RWAs (time's tight, so I must forego inserting formatting markup codes):
The Authoritarians pp 30-34
Unauthoritarians and Authoritarians: Worlds of Difference
By now you must be developing a feel for what high RWAs think and do, and also an impression of low RWAs. Do you think you know each group well enough to predict what they’d do if they ran the world? One night in October, 1994 I let a group of low RWA university students determine the future of the planet (you didn’t know humble researchers could do this, did you!). Then the next night I gave high RWAs their kick at the can.
The setting involved a rather sophisticated simulation of the earth’s future called the Global Change Game, which is played on a big map of the world by 50-participants who have been split into various regions such as North America, Africa, India and China. The players are divided up according to current populations, so a lot more students hunker down in India than in North America. The game was designed to raise environmental awareness, and before the exercise begins players study up on their region’s resources, prospects, and environmental issues.
Then the facilitators who service the simulation call for some member, any member of each region, to assume the role of team leader by simply standing up. Once the “Elites” in the world have risen to the task they are taken aside and given control of their region’s bank account. They can use this to buy factories, hospitals, armies, and so on from the game bank, and they can travel the world making deals with other Elites. They also discover they can discretely put some of their region’s wealth into their own pockets, to vie for a prize to be given out at the end of the simulation to the World’s Richest Person. Then the game begins, and the world goes wherever the players take it for the next forty years which, because time flies in a simulation, takes about two and a half hours.
The Low RWA Game
By carefully organizing sign-up booklets, I was able to get 67 low RWA students to play the game together on October 18th . (They had no idea they had been funneled into this run of the experiment according to their RWA scale scores; indeed they had probably never heard of right-wing authoritarianism.) Seven men and three women made themselves Elites. As soon as the simulation began, the Pacific Rim Elite called for a summit on the “Island Paradise of Tasmania.” All the Elites attended and agreed to meet there again whenever big issues arose. A world-wide organization was thus immediately created by mutual consent.
Regions set to work on their individual problems. Swords were converted to ploughshares as the number of armies in the world dropped. No wars or threats of wars occurred during the simulation. [At one point the North American Elite suggested starting a war to his fellow region-aires (two women and one guy), but they told him to go fly a kite--or words to that effect.]
An hour into the game the facilitators announced a (scheduled) crisis in the earth’s ozone layer. All the Elites met in Tasmania and contributed enough money to buy new technology to replenish the ozone layer.
Other examples of international cooperation occurred, but the problems of the Third World mounted in Africa and India. Europe gave some aid but North America refused to help. Africa eventually lost 300 million people to starvation and disease, and India 100 million.
Populations had grown and by the time forty years had passed the earth held 8.7
billion people, but the players were able to provide food, health facilities, and jobs for almost all of them. They did so by demilitarizing, by making a lot of trades that benefited both parties, by developing sustainable economic programs, and because the Elites diverted only small amounts of the treasury into their own pockets. (The North American Elite hoarded the most.)
One cannot blow off four hundred million deaths, but this was actually a highly successful run of the game, compared to most. No doubt the homogeneity of the players, in terms of their RWA scores and related attitudes, played a role. Low RWAs do not typically see the world as “Us versus Them.” They are more interested in cooperation than most people are, and they are often genuinely concerned about the environment. Within their regional groups, and in the interactions of the Elites, these first-year students would have usually found themselves “on the same page”--and writ large on that page was, “Let’s Work Together and Clean Up This Mess.” The game’s facilitators said they had never seen as much international cooperation in previous runs of the simulation. With the exception of the richest region, North America, the lows saw themselves as interdependent and all riding on the same merry-go-round.
The High RWA Game
The next night 68 high RWAs showed up for their ride, just as ignorant of how they had been funneled into this run of the experiment as the low RWA students had been the night before. The game proceeded as usual. Background material was read, Elites (all males) nominated themselves, and the Elites were briefed. Then the “wedgies” started. As soon as the game began, the Elite from the Middle East announced the price of oil had just doubled. A little later the former Soviet Union (known as the Confederation of Independent States in 1994) bought a lot of armies and invaded North America. The latter had insufficient conventional forces to defend itself, and so retaliated with nuclear weapons. A nuclear holocaust ensued which killed everyone on earth--7.4 billion people--and almost all other forms of life which had the misfortune of co-habitating the same planet as a species with nukes.
When this happens in the Global Change Game, the facilitators turn out all the lights and explain what a nuclear war would produce. Then the players are given a second chance to determine the future, turning back the clock to two years before the hounds of war were loosed. The former Soviet Union however rebuilt its armies and invaded China this time, killing 400 million people. The Middle East Elite then called for a “United Nations” meeting to discuss handling future crises, but no agreements were reached.
At this point the ozone-layer crisis occurred but--perhaps because of the recent failure of the United Nations meeting--no one called for a summit. Only Europe took steps to reduce its harmful gas emissions, so the crisis got worse. Poverty was spreading unchecked in the underdeveloped regions, which could not control their population growth. Instead of dealing with the social and economic problems “back home,” Elites began jockeying among themselves for power and protection, forming military alliances to confront other budding alliances. Threats raced around the room and the Confederation of Independent States warned it was ready to start another nuclear war. Partly because their Elites had used their meager resources to buy into alliances, Africa and Asia were on the point of collapse. An Elite called for a United Nations meeting to deal with the crises--take your pick--and nobody came.
By the time forty years had passed the world was divided into armed camps threatening each other with another nuclear destruction. One billion, seven hundred thousand people had died of starvation and disease. Throw in the 400 million who died in the Soviet-China war and casualties reached 2.1 billion. Throw in the 7.4 billion who died in the nuclear holocaust, and the high RWAs managed to kill 9.5 billion people in their world--although we, like some battlefield news releases, are counting some of the corpses twice.
The authoritarian world ended in disaster for many reasons. One was likely the character of their Elites, who put more than twice as much money in their own pockets as the low RWA Elites had. (The Middle East Elite ended up the World’s Richest Man; part of his wealth came from money he had conned from Third World Elites as payment for joining his alliance.) But more importantly, the high RWAs proved incredibly ethnocentric. There they were, in a big room full of people just like themselves, and they all turned their backs on each other and paid attention only to their own group. They too were all reading from the same page, but writ large on their page was, “Care About Your Own; We Are NOT All In This Together.”
The high RWAs also suffered because, while they say on surveys that they care about the environment, when push comes to shove they usually push and shove for the bucks. That is, they didn’t care much about the long-term environmental consequences of their economic acts. For example a facilitator told Latin America that converting much of the region’s forests to a single species of tree would make the ecosystem vulnerable. But the players decided to do it anyway because the tree’s lumber was very profitable just then. And the highs proved quite inflexible when it came to birth control. Advised that “just letting things go” would cause the populations in underdeveloped areas to explode, the authoritarians just let things go.
Now the Global Change Game is not the world stage, university students are not world leaders, and starting a nuclear holocaust in a gymnasium is not the same thing as launching real missiles from Siberia and North Dakota. So the students’ behavior on those two successive nights in 1994 provides little basis for drawing conclusions about the future of the planet. But some of what happened in this experiment rang true to me. I especially thought, “I’ve seen this show before” as I sat on the sidelines and watched the high RWAs create their very own October crisis.
You have recently advocated the high-RWA approach to running the global economy ("competition over cooperation"). Now you have seen the consequences of what you are asking for.

This message is a reply to:
 Message 54 by Phat, posted 01-02-2023 8:16 AM Phat has not replied

Replies to this message:
 Message 64 by marc9000, posted 01-02-2023 10:48 PM dwise1 has not replied

Posts: 5991
Joined: 05-02-2006
Member Rating: 3.2

Message 102 of 188 (904929)
01-11-2023 4:49 PM
Reply to: Message 97 by Phat
01-11-2023 1:57 PM

Re: Midwest unprepared
You cant very well mandate electric vehicles when your blessed poor people cannot afford them.
What specifically are you talking about?
Are you claiming that seeking to phase out internal combustion vehicles and replacing them with electric vehicles over a period of one to two decades (by 2035 is what I seem to recall from a few years ago) is supposed to mean that everybody regardless of income level must switch over by tomorrow? If so, then that sounds as loony as marc9000's rants about instantaneously stopping oil production.
As production of new cars shifts to a higher percentage of electric vehicles, both market forces (increased availability of new electric and lowered availability of new gas leading to more electric purchases) and improving technology will make the sticker price of new electric cars more competitive with that of new gas jobs.
At the same time, increasing numbers of earlier electric models will enter the used-car market, which has its own set of market characteristics including a wide range of customer levels. Over time, there will be enough used electric cars to be within reach of those lower income levels.
Please note that we saw the same thing happening when we phased out leaded gasoline along with the cars that required leaded gas.
Another consideration is the cost of maintenance. There will be many things that you as a backyard mechanic will not be able to fix on an electric vehicle, but rather you will need to take it to a mechanic with the training and equipment to work on it. Actually, we are already there with fuel injectors (no more carburetors, which I've worked with) and electronic ignition (no more replacing and setting points, which I've worked with), all of which are controlled by "brick brains" (car computers) for which you need a special computer to work with. I haven't check, but does AutoZone even carry those special mechanic's computers?
Also, please note even now with used gas cars that even those clunkers are out of reach for many of the poor.
So there's a lot involved that will change over time. Your complaints appear to be based on current conditions rather than what we can reasonably expect future conditions to be.
bring the price tag

This message is a reply to:
 Message 97 by Phat, posted 01-11-2023 1:57 PM Phat has seen this message but not replied

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