Friday, June 24, 2005

Austin Weather Forecast: Unbearable

Ever since I arrived here, seven years ago, for nine months of the year, I wondered why it took me so long to get here and for the other three months, I wonder: "What the hell am I doing here?"
Summer just arrived and we're already in the middle of a heat wave- with no respite in sight.
Daytime temperatures in the mid-to-high nineties. It's still cooling off a little at night but by this time next
month we'll probably start seeing the "triple digit weeks" when we can go several consecutive days without seeing the thermometer ever drop below 90 deg, (farenheit)
There has been a population explosion in Austin during the past 10 years. It would never have happened without efficient and (realatively) cheap central AC.

I wonder how people existed here without AC? I guess a large percentage of the population e.g. University students and faculty just "got outa Dodge" for the summer .
I'm leaving in two weeks and won't be back until the 3rd week in August.

Wednesday, June 22, 2005

Helping to Rebuild in S.E. Asia

Bill Clinton's OpEd peice in the NY Times this morning stimulated my curiousity about what volunteers are needed and what they can do to help relieve the suffering of the millions of people whose lives were affected by the Tsunami. Millions of homeless, children without schools etc.
Briefly, it seems that the answer is "None, nothing" hundreds have tried to volunteer their services via the web (see: for examples) but there is no organization willing or interested in matching volunteers with opportunities. It looks like another example of Western civilization strangling in its' own vomit.
Media hype=emotional response=national & corporate promises= "none, nothing"
By the time the beaureucracy is up and running the people of Asia who were devastated by the Tsunami will either be dead or have taken care of the problem themselves.
Maybe it's just another step in Malthusuian population control?