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View Full Version : Economic Perspectives on The War from OZ (long, but worth it)



Scott Rosen
03-25-2003, 12:23 PM
Geoffrey Heard © 2003. Anyone is free to circulate this document
provided it is complete and in its current form with attribution and no
payment is asked. It is prohibited to reproduce this document or any
part of it for commercial gain without the prior permission of the
author. For such permission, contact the author at gheard@surf.net.au.

Faced with the failure of gaining UN Security Council support for
invading Iraq, the USA has threatened to invade without authorisation.
It would act in breach of the UN's very constitution to allegedly
enforced UN resolutions.

It is plain bizarre. Where does this desperation for war come from?

There are many things driving President Bush and his administration to
invade Iraq, unseat Saddam Hussein and take over the country. But the
biggest one is hidden and very, very simple. It is about the currency
used to trade oil and consequently, who will te the world
economically, in the foreseeable future -- the USA or the European
Union.

Iraq is a European Union beachhead in that confrontation. America had a
monopoly on the oil trade, with the US dollar being the fiat currency,
but Iraq broke ranks in 1999, started to trade oil in the EU's euros,
and profited. If America invades Iraq and takes over, it will hurl the
EU and its euro back into the sea and make America's position as the
dominant economic power in the world all but impregnable.

It is the biggest grab for world power in modern times.

America's allies in the invasion, Britain and Australia, are betting
America will win and that they will get some trickle-down benefits for
jumping on to the US bandwagon.

France and Germany are the spearhead of the European force -- Russia
would like to go European but possibly can still be bought off.

Presumably, China would like to see the Europeans build a share of
international trade currency ownership at this point while it continues
to grow its international trading presence to the point where it, too,
can share the leadership rewards.

DEBATE BUILDING ON THE INTERNET

Oddly, little or nothing is appearing in the general media about this
issue, although key people are becoming aware of it -- note the recent
slide in the value of the US dollar. Are traders afraid of war? They are
more likely to be afraid there will not be war.

But despite the silence in the general media, a major world discussion
is developing around this issue, particularly on the internet. Among the
many articles: Henry Liu, in the 'Asia Times' last June, it has been a
hot topic on the Feasta forum, an Irish-based group exploring
sustainable economics, and W. Clark's "The Real Reasons for the Upcoming
War with Iraq: A Macroeconomic and Geostrategic Analysis of the Unspoken
Truth" has been published by the 'Sierra Times', 'Indymedia.org', and
'ratical.org'.

This debate is not about whether America would suffer from losing the US
dollar monopoly on oil trading -- that is a given -- rather it is about
exactly how hard the USA would be hit. The smart money seems to be
saying the impact would be in the range from severe to catastrophic. The
USA could collapse economically.

OIL DOLLARS

The key to it all is the fiat currency for trading oil.

Under an OPEC agreement, all oil has been traded in US dollars since
1971 (after the dropping of the gold standard) which makes the US dollar
the de facto major international trading currency. If other nations have
to hoard dollars to buy oil, then they want to use that hoard for other
trading too. This fact gives America a huge trading advantage and helps
make it the nt economy in the world.

As an economic bloc, the European Union is the only challenger to the
USA's economic position, and it created the euro to challenge the dollar
in international markets. However, the EU is not yet united behind the
euro -- there is a lot of jingoistic national politics involved, not
least in Britain -- and in any case, so long as nations throughout the
world must hoard dollars to buy oil, the euro can make only very limited
inroads into the dollar's nce.

In 1999, Iraq, with the world's second largest oil reserves, switched to
trading its oil in euros. American analysts fell about laughing; Iraq
had just made a mistake that was going to beggar the nation. But two
years on, alarm bells were sounding; the euro was rising against the
dollar, Iraq had given itself a huge economic free kick by switching.

Iran started thinking about switching too; Venezuela, the 4th largest
oil producer, began looking at it and has been cutting out the dollar by
bartering oil with several nations including America's bete noir, Cuba.
Russia is seeking to ramp up oil production with Europe (trading in
euros) an obvious market.

The greenback's grip on oil trading and consequently on world trade in
general, was under serious threat. If America did not stamp on this
immediately, this economic brushfire could rapidly be fanned into a
wildfire capable of consuming the US's economy and its nce of
world trade.

HOW DOES THE US GET ITS DOLLAR ADVANTAGE?

Imagine this: you are deep in debt but every day you write cheques for
millions of dollars you don't have -- another luxury car, a holiday home
at the beach, the world trip of a lifetime.

Your cheques should be worthless but they keep buying stuff because
those cheques you write never reach the bank! You have an agreement with
the owners of one thing everyone wants, call it petrol/gas, that they
will accept only your cheques as payment. This means everyone must hoard
your cheques so they can buy petrol/gas. Since they have to keep a stock
of your cheques, they use them to buy other stuff too. You write a
cheque to buy a TV, the TV shop owner swaps your cheque for petrol/gas,
that seller buys some vegetables at the fruit shop, the fruiterer passes
it on to buy bread, the baker buys some flour with it, and on it goes,
round and round -- but never back to the bank.

You have a debt on your books, but so long as your cheque never reaches
the bank, you don't have to pay. In effect, you have received your TV
free.

This is the position the USA has enjoyed for 30 years -- it has been
getting a free world trade ride for all that time. It has been receiving
a huge subsidy from everyone else in the world. As it debt has been
growing, it has printed more money (written more cheques) to keep
trading. No wonder it is an economic powerhouse!

Then one day, one petrol seller says he is going to accept another
person's cheques, a couple of others think that might be a good idea. If
this spreads, people are going to stop hoarding your cheques and they
will come flying home to the bank. Since you don't have enough in the
bank to cover all the cheques, very stuff is going to hit the fan!

But you are big, tough and very aggressive. You don't scare the other
guy who can write cheques, he's pretty big too, but given a 'legitimate'
excuse, you can beat the tripes out of the lone gas seller and scare him
and his mates into submission.

And that, in a nutshell, is what the USA is doing right now with Iraq.

AMERICA'S PRECARIOUS ECONOMIC POSITION

America is so eager to attack Iraq now because of the speed with which
the euro fire could spread. If Iran, Venezuela and Russia join Iraq and
sell large quantities of oil for euros, the euro would have the leverage
it needs to become a powerful force in general international trade.
Other nations would have to start swapping some of their dollars for
euros.

The dollars the USA has printed, the 'cheques' it has written, would
start to fly home, stripping away the illusion of value behind them. The
USA's real economic condition is about as bad as it could be; it is the
most debt-ridden nation on earth, owing about US$12,000 for every single
one of it's 280 million men, women and children. It is worse than the
position of Indonesia when it imploded economically a few years ago, or
more recently, that of Argentina.

Even if OPEC did not switch to euros wholesale (and that would make a
very nice non-oil profit for the OPEC countries, including minimising
the various contrived debts America has forced on some of them), the
US's difficulties would build. Even if only a small part of the oil
trade went euro, that would do two things immediately:

* Increase the attractiveness to EU members of joining the 'eurozone',
which in turn would make the euro stronger and make it more attractive
to oil nations as a trading currency and to other nations as a general
trading currency.

* Start the US dollars flying home demanding value when there isn't
enough in the bank to cover them.

* The markets would over-react as usual and in no time, the US dollar's
value would be spiralling down.

THE US SOLUTION

America's response to the euro threat was predictable. It has come out
fighting.

It aims to achieve four primary things by going to war with Iraq:

* Safeguard the American economy by returning Iraq to trading oil in US
dollars, so the greenback is once again the exclusive oil currency.

* Send a very clear message to any other oil producers just what will
happen to them if they do not stay in the dollar circle. Iran has
already received one message -- remember how puzzled you were that in
the midst of moderation and secularization, Iran was named as a member
of the axis of evil?

* Place the second largest reserves of oil in the world under direct
American control.

* Provide a secular, subject state where the US can maintain a huge
force (perhaps with nominal elements from allies such as Britain and
Australia) to te the Middle East and its vital oil. This would
enable the US to avoid using what it sees as the unreliable Turkey, the
politically impossible Israel and surely the next state in its sights,
Saudi Arabia, the birthplace of al Qaeda and a hotbed of anti-American
sentiment.

* Severe setback the European Union and its euro, the only trading bloc
and currency strong enough to attack the USA's nce of world trade
through the dollar.

* Provide cover for the US to run a covert operation to overturn the
democratically elected government of Venezuela and replace it with an
America-friendly military supported junta -- and put Venezuela's oil
into American hands.

Locking the world back into dollar oil trading would consolidate
America's current position and make it all but impregnable as the
dominant world power -- economically and militarily. A splintered Europe
(the US is working hard to split Europe; Britain was easy, but other
Europeans have offered support in terms of UN votes) and its euro would
suffer a serious setback and might take decades to recover.

It is the boldest grab for absolute power the world has seen in modern
times. America is hardly likely to allow the possible slaughter of a few
hundred thousand Iraqis stand between it and world tion.

President Bush did promise to protect the American way of life. This is
what he meant.

JUSTIFYING WAR

Obviously, the US could not simply invade Iraq, so it began casting
around for a 'legitimate' reason to attack. That search has been one of
increasing desperation as each rationalization has crumbled. First Iraq
was a threat because of alleged links to al Qaeda; then it was proposed
Iraq might supply al Qaeda with weapons; then Iraq's military threat to
its neighbours was raised; then the need to deliver Iraqis from Saddam
Hussein's horrendously inhumane rule; finally there is the question of
compliance with UN weapons inspection.

The USA's justifications for invading Iraq are looking less impressive
by the day. The US's statements that it would invade Iraq unilaterally
without UN support and in defiance of the UN make a total nonsense of
any American claim that it is concerned about the world body's strength
and standing.

The UN weapons inspectors have come up with minimal infringements of the
UN weapons limitations -- the final one being low tech rockets which
exceed the range allowed by about 20 percent. But there is no sign of
the so-called weapons of mass destruction (WMD) the US has so
confidently asserted are to be found. Colin Powell named a certain north
Iraqi village as a threat. It was not. He later admitted it was the
wrong village.

'Newsweek' (24/2) has reported that while Bush officials have been
trumpeting the fact that key Iraqi defector, Lt. Gen. Hussein Kamel,
told the US in 1995 that Iraq had manufactured tonnes of nerve gas and
anthrax (Colin Powell's 5 February presentation to the UN was just one
example) they neglected to mention that Kamel had also told the US that
these weapons had been destroyed.

Parts of the US and particularly the British secret 'evidence' have been
shown to come from a student's masters thesis.

America's expressed concern about the Iraqi people's human rights and
the country's lack of democracy are simply not supported by the USA's
history of intervention in other states nor by its current actions.
Think Guatemala, the Congo, Chile and Nicaragua as examples of a much
larger pool of US actions to tear down legitimate, democratically
elected governments and replace them with war, disruption, starvation,
poverty, corruption, dictatorships, , and murder for its own
economic ends. The most recent, Afghanistan, is not looking good; in
fact that reinstalled a murderous group of warlords which America had
earlier installed, then deposed, in favour of the now hated Taliban.

Saddam Hussein was just as repressive, corrupt and murderous 15 years
ago when he used chemical weapons, supplied by the US, against the
Kurds. The current US Secretary for Defence, Donald Rumsfeld, so
vehement against Iraq now, was on hand personally to turn aside
condemnation of Iraq and blame Iran. At that time, of course, the US
thought Saddam Hussein was their man -- they were using him against the
perceived threat of Iran's Islamic fundamentalism.

Right now, as 'The Independent' writer, Robert Fisk, has noted, the US's
efforts to buy Algeria's UN vote includes promises of re-arming the
military which has a decade long history of repression, ,
and murder Saddam Hussein himself would envy. It is estimated 200,000
people have died, and countless others been left maimed by the
activities of these monsters. What price the US's humanitarian concerns
for Iraqis? (Of course, the French are also wooing Algeria, their former
north African territory, for all they are worth, but at least they are
not pretending to be driven by humanitarian concerns.)

Indonesia is another nation with a vote and influence as the largest
Muslim nation in the world. Its repressive, murderous military is
regaining strength on the back of the US's so-called anti-terror
campaign and is receiving promises of open and covert support --
including intelligence sharing.

AND VENEZUELA

While the world's attention is focused on Iraq, America is both openly
and covertly supporting the "coup of the rich" in Venezuela, which
grabbed power briefly in April last year before being intimidated by
massive public displays of support by the poor for
democratically-elected President Chavez Frias. The coup leaders continue
to use their control of the private media, much of industry and the ear
of the American Government and its oily intimates to cause disruption
and disturbance.

Venezuela's state-owned oil resources would make rich pickings for
American oil companies and provide the US with an important oil source
in its own backyard.

Many writers have noted the contradiction between America's alleged
desire to establish democracy in Iraq while at the same time, actively
undermining the democratically-elected government in Venezuela. Above
the line, America rushed to recognise the coup last April; more
recently, President Bush has called for "early elections", ignoring the
fact that President Chavez Frias has won three elections and two
referendums and, in any case, early elections would be unconstitutional.

One element of the USA's covert action against Venezuela is the
behaviour of American transnational businesses, which have locked out
employees in support of "national strike" action. Imagine them doing
that in the USA! There is no question that a covert operation is in
process to overturn the legitimate Venezuelan government. Uruguayan
congressman, Jose Nayardi, made it public when he revealed that the Bush
administration had asked for Uruguay's support for Venezuelan white
collar executives and trade union activists "to break down levels of
intransigence within the Chavez Frias administration". The process, he
noted, was a shocking reminder of the CIA's 1973 intervention in Chile
which saw General Pinochet lead his military coup to take over President
Allende's democratically elected government in a bloodbath.

President Chavez Frias is desperately clinging to government, but with
the might of the USA aligned with his opponents, how long can he last?

THE COST OF WAR

Some have claimed that an American invasion of Iraq would cost so many
billions of dollars that oil returns would never justify such an action.

But when the invasion is placed in the context of the protection of the
entire US economy for now and into the future, the balance of the
argument changes.

Further, there are three other vital factors:

First, America will be asking others to help pay for the war because it
is protecting their interests. Japan and Saudi Arabia made serious
contributions to the cost of the 1991 Gulf war.

Second -- in reality, war will cost the USA very little -- or at least,
very little over and above normal expenditure. This war is already paid
for! All the munitions and equipment have been bought and paid for. The
USA would have to spend hardly a cent on new hardware to prosecute this
war -- the expenditure will come later when munitions and equipment have
to be replaced after the war. But ammunition, hardware and so on are
being replaced all the time -- contracts are out. Some contracts will
simply be brought forward and some others will be ramped up a bit, but
spread over a few years, the cost will not be great. And what is the
real extra cost of an army at war compared with maintaining the standing
army around the world, running exercises and so on? It is there, but it
is a relatively small sum.

Third -- lots of the extra costs involved in the war are dollars spent
outside America, not least in the purchase of fuel. Guess how America
will pay for these? By printing dollars it is going to war to protect.
The same happens when production begins to replace hardware components,
minerals, etc. are bought in with dollars that go overseas and exploit
America's trading advantage.

The cost of war is not nearly as big as it is made out to be. The cost
of not going to war would be horrendous for the USA -- unless there were
another way of protecting the greenback's world trade nce.

AMERICA'S TWO ACTIVE ALLIES

Why are Australia and Britain supporting America in its transparent
Iraqi war ploy?

Australia, of course, has significant US dollar reserves and trades
widely in dollars and extensively with America. A fall in the US dollar
would reduce Australia's debt, perhaps, but would do nothing for the
Australian dollar's value against other currencies. John Howard, the
Prime Minister, has long cherished the dream of a free trade agreement
with the USA in the hope that Australia can jump on the back of the free
ride America gets in trade through the dollar's position as the major
trading medium. That would look much less attractive if the euro took
over a significant part of the oil trade.

Britain has yet to adopt the euro. If the US takes over Iraq and blocks
the euro's incursion into oil trading, Tony Blair will have given his
French and German counterparts a bloody nose, and gained more room to
maneuver on the issue -- perhaps years more room.

Britain would be in a position to demand a better deal from its EU
partners for entering the "eurozone" if the new currency could not make
the huge value gains guaranteed by a significant role in world oil
trading. It might even be in a position to withdraw from Europe and link
with America against continental Europe.

On the other hand, if the US cannot maintain the oil trade dollar
monopoly, the euro will rapidly go from strength to strength, and
Britain could be left begging to be allowed into the club.

THE OPPOSITION

Some of the reasons for opposition to the American plan are obvious --
America is already the strongest nation on earth and tes world
trade through its dollar. If it had control of the Iraqi oil and a base
for its forces in the Middle East, it would not add to, but would
multiply its power.

The oil-producing nations, particularly the Arab ones, can see the
writing on the wall and are quaking in their boots.

France and Germany are the EU leaders with the vision of a resurgent,
united Europe taking its rightful place in the world and using its euro
currency as a world trading reserve currency and thus gaining some of
the free ride the United States enjoys now. They are the ones who
initiated the euro oil trade with Iraq.

Russia is in deep economic trouble and knows it will get worse the day
America starts exploiting its take-over of Afghanistan by running a
pipeline southwards via Afghanistan from the giant southern Caspian oil
fields. Currently, that oil is piped northwards -- where Russia has
control.

Russia is in the process of ramping up oil production with the
possibility of trading some of it for euros and selling some to the US
itself. Russia already has enough problems with the fact that oil is
traded in US dollars; if the US has control of Iraqi oil, it could
distort the market to Russia's enormous disadvantage. In addition,
Russia has interests in Iraqi oil; an American take over could see them
lost. Already on its knees, Russia could be beggared before a mile of
the Afghanistan pipeline is laid.

ANOTHER SOLUTION?

The scenario clarifies the seriousness of America's position and
explains its frantic drive for war. It also suggests that solutions
other than war are possible.

Could America agree to share the trading goodies by allowing Europe to
have a negotiated part of it? Not very likely, but it is just possible
Europe can stare down the USA and force such an outcome. Time will tell.
What about Europe taking the statesmanlike, humanitarian and long view,
and withdrawing, leaving the oil to the US, with appropriate safeguards
for ordinary Iraqis and democracy in Venezuela?

Europe might then be forced to adopt a smarter approach -- perhaps
accelerating the development of alternative energy technologies which
would reduce the EU's reliance on oil for energy and produce goods it
could trade for euros -- shifting the world trade balance.

Now that would be a very positive outcome for everyone.

. . . .

Geoffrey Heard is a Melbourne, Australia, writer on the environment,
sustainability and human rights.

Ian McColgin
03-25-2003, 01:00 PM
I doubt our 'policy makers' are bright enough to plan this, but perhaps the folk behind them are.

Or, more likely, events just have conjoining consequences no matter what the original conscious intention.

Regardless of the conscious intention, we are responsible for those consequences.

Thanks Scott.

Bruce Taylor
03-25-2003, 01:07 PM
Scott seems different, now that he's a liberal. :D

Strange article.

WWheeler
03-25-2003, 01:10 PM
It seems a bit far fetched that the world's trade is based entirely on oil. There are many other goods and commodities traded around the world. However, his statements about US current account deficits are completely true. There is a massive and systematic ability for the US to borrow from the rest of the world, without having to pay the debt.

I spent a year in Saudi Arabia. Given their pride and sense of identity, it surprised me to see the way the greenback changed hands at the moneychangers and in the souq.

Alan D. Hyde
03-25-2003, 01:22 PM
Read The Story of the Malakand Field Force, Winston S. Churchill's first book.

The character and motivations of some in the Arab world seem to have changed little since that time.

That book tells a fascinating and well-written story: it's well worth reading.

Alan

High C
03-25-2003, 02:03 PM
Geoffrey Heard's article is typical conspiracy theory paranoia. Heard it before, blah, blah, blah...

km gresham
03-25-2003, 02:05 PM
Scott are you really a liberal, or did you misread a couple of those vague questions? How about a recount on those scores? smile.gif

Meerkat
03-25-2003, 02:12 PM
Scott; Excellent article! While I too was struck with the notion that a lower valued dollar would help our export business, your article clearly underscores the delicate nature of international trade and the fact that, if confidence is lost in the US dollar, the whole house of cards could crumble.

Oil may not be all that America deals in, but it's the one thing that allows other goods and services to be produced. That certainly supports the argument as to how critical it is.

Scott Rosen
03-25-2003, 02:18 PM
I posted the article because it was thought provoking, not because I agreed with it. Frankly, I don't know enough about international currency dealings to be able to assess the validity of the article. But it presented a point of view that I hadn't considered before.

And, no, I'm not a liberal. But I took both of those tests and came out on the same place. I think it's because I favor less governmental restrictions in the social area--i.e., abortion, etc. While I don't favor completely free trade. The tests seem to be heavily weighted toward hot-botton issues like abortion, homosexuality, etc.

Andrew Craig-Bennett
03-25-2003, 02:26 PM
On a point of information, China was approached by EU representatives urging China to hold some of its (large) foreign currency reserves in Euros, rather than Dollars, back in 2000. China declined, basically on the grounds that they thought the Euro was mickey mouse money.

Sam F
03-25-2003, 02:29 PM
If “The dollars the USA has printed, the 'cheques' it has written, would
start to fly home, stripping away the illusion of value behind them.” is true.

Then

“Japan and Saudi Arabia made serious contributions to the cost of the 1991 Gulf war.” makes no sense at all.

When these worthless ‘cheques’ of US dollars sent by the Japanese and Saudis “flew home” did they harm the US by "stripping away the illusion of value" ?
I should have such illusions! :rolleyes:

Scott Rosen
03-25-2003, 03:15 PM
Andrew, I think you'll find that the Chinese are very shrewd when it comes to currency matters. They've got their currency pegged to the dollar, so they can continue their nce of the American consumer market. They are acquiring lots of gold, though. Food for thought.

Matt Middleton
03-25-2003, 03:23 PM
What's "nce?"

Andrew Craig-Bennett
03-25-2003, 03:28 PM
The Renminbi Yuan / Dollar peg is complex; the Chinese banking system is, shall we say, not like ours!

Scott Rosen
03-25-2003, 03:35 PM
Originally posted by Matt Middleton:
What's "nce?"It is the last three letters of a word that the Forum editor automatically deletes. I have no idea why.

D - O - M - I - N - A - N - C - E

Matt Middleton
03-25-2003, 04:00 PM
Not to change the subject, but I think that happened several times in the above article as well.

Back to the subject. That's a scary scenario to one who's never considered it. I suppose the thought it most provoked in me was something like this:
I live a pretty comfortable life right now. What would I do to protect and provide for me and mine if the bottom were to fall out?

Matt

Alan D. Hyde
03-25-2003, 04:09 PM
Grow a garden.

Cut wood for heat.

Build a methane generator, and run your vehicle on that.

All these have been done before, and can be done again.

Dollars have no intrinsic value. We only value them for what they'll buy us that does have intrinsic value. And, it really doesn't take much in the way of physical possessions to live happily, IF you're all healthy...

Alan

Cap'n R an R
03-25-2003, 04:36 PM
Contracts for the rebuilding of Iraq now being handed out....business as usual....any lobbying for contracts going on???....the death and destruction is nauseating but what is behind it may be even more sickening.....if that article speaks the truth, what we are doing will not sit comfortably with the rest of the world ....all nations do what is in their own perceived best interests...that includes all that we did for France,Germany,Great Britain and others....we deemed it in our best interest to help when needed...you would have to stretch your belief structure very far if you think we are taking over Iraq for altruistic reasons....we have troops and equipment in 55 countries around the world....the proper path after 58 years of world "occupation" would be to bring every person and all equipment home and look to our own affairs....which are rapidly tumbling into a disaster.....I surely dont believe the Economic B.S. that comes out of Washington....the economic and monetary excesses that have built up in this country can not be eliminated by bringing Iraqi oil in vast amounts onto the world market....if our government believes it can accomplish a turning back of the tides and the PRIMARY secular trends it will drown..in due time....

Bruce Taylor
03-25-2003, 04:45 PM
Build a methane generator, and run your vehicle on that.I'm intrigued.

How practical is this for a forest-dweller with no cow? How big a pile of raked leaves, pizza crusts and coffee grounds would it take to get my Subaru to Ottawa and back (40 miles)? What kind of apparatus do I need? Can I harvest septic gases? What will I have to do to my car to make it enjoy burning methane? Once I've convinced my car to burn methane will it still be able to burn gasoline? Will it be easier, in the end, than pushing my car to Ottawa and back?

Jim H
03-25-2003, 06:19 PM
Interesting article, until it gets to the U.S. Solutions. Then it becomes the "Sam's Club" of conspiracy thoeries. I really liked how the author said we rushed to support the coup in Venezuela, when in fact we did no such thing. The U.S. supported the OAS and it's negotiations with both sides in the conflict. In fact during the one day of the coup we urged coup leaders not to disolve the national assembly. It was an interesting read though.

Jim

Sam F
03-25-2003, 07:13 PM
Originally posted by Bruce Taylor:
</font><blockquote>quote:</font><hr />Build a methane generator, and run your vehicle on that.I'm intrigued.

How practical is this for a forest-dweller with no cow? How big a pile of raked leaves, pizza crusts and coffee grounds would it take to get my Subaru to Ottawa and back (40 miles)? What kind of apparatus do I need? Can I harvest septic gases? What will I have to do to my car to make it enjoy burning methane? Once I've convinced my car to burn methane will it still be able to burn gasoline? Will it be easier, in the end, than pushing my car to Ottawa and back?</font>[/QUOTE]To run your car for any appreciable distance it isn't practical but that's looking at it from a current "developed" economy perspective. Running your moped would be another matter.
Think of what would be the minimum energy required to do something. 4-wheel drive and AC don't fit the energy scarce economic model that I think Alan is talking about.

[ 03-25-2003, 07:15 PM: Message edited by: Sam F ]

shamus
03-25-2003, 07:57 PM
Bruce: For a forest dweller I think a gas producer would be best. Burn wood into charcoal first, then burn charcoal in gas producer mounted on car. These were common in WW2, the major problem being grit getting into engine and wearing out bores.

Harry Miller
03-25-2003, 08:33 PM
Cap'n R an R
....all nations do what is in their own perceived best interests...that includes all that we did for France,Germany,Great Britain and others....we deemed it in our best interest to help when needed...you would have to stretch your belief structure very far if you think we are taking over Iraq for altruistic reasons.... Your "PURE, HONEST,HONORABLE AND HOLY" thread sure landed some big fish?

Wendy Reymond
03-25-2003, 08:43 PM
Two thought-provoking links
www.newamericancentury.org (http://www.newamericancentury.org)
www.monbiot.com (http://www.monbiot.com) (click on interviews/debates, then My Debate with MediaLens).
Wendy

Wild Wassa
03-25-2003, 09:23 PM
"The President isn't bright enough, ... but the guys behind him are", was the earlier quote. These are reasons why the US needs to be the new OPEC.

The Neo-Cons have convinced him, that the road to peace is through Baghdad, ... the whole World except for the peroquial Americans know that it is through Jerusalem.

The Neo-Cons will never admit this, and the US has been so easily fooled, ... John Howard isn't fooled, he is already a fool.

It is not Scott's article it was by an Aussie author. I wish some of the blind could be off shore and look back into the US, you might not like what you would see.

A gun in one hand and bread in the other, ... I donít think the world is fooled.

Warren.

Rocky
03-25-2003, 10:50 PM
Whaddya know Donn, looks like we both got an answer to my question.