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Siddermark Going the Way of the Wiemer Republic? (Spoilers?)

This fascinating series is a combination of historical seafaring, swashbuckling adventure, and high technological science-fiction. Join us in a discussion!
Re: Siddermark Going the Way of the Wiemer Republic? (Spoile
Post by Zagri   » Sat Feb 16, 2019 9:53 am

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Chaser617 wrote:Anyone else seen these ever so slight parallels and wondering if Siddar, maybe with a little push from say Desnair or South Harchong wanting to sow more dissent and see well, the complete fall of the Republic into something maybe even worse than Harchong or Desnair?


It strikes me that a more exact parallel is France after WWI. France's industrial zones in the northeast of the country had been comprehensively smashed because they were the main site of fighting and because the Germans had taken some care to demolish factories and mines in occupied areas. Such reparations as were actually paid did not begin to cover the cost of rebuilding and there was obviously no equivalent of the Marshall Plan.

The interwar period is when the Third Republic went into truly spectacular political instability with revolving door prime ministers and governments. There were constant banking scandals and failures, often due to political corruption. The economy was a basket case. The French right was less and less committed to democracy or even the republic itself as the two interwar decades proceeded. And all political parties were less and less interested in cooperating for the defence of the the republic.

When WWII hit, France was defended by ancient WWI generals (Gamelin, Weygand, Pétain) who no longer cared about democracy or the republic at all.

My guess is war between Desnair and Siddarmark. If Desnair acquires a charismatic psychopath as a leader we will have a fair idea of what's coming.

Sidebar: When Prime Minister Édouard Daladier's plane reached Paris after the Munich conference he was told that a huge crowd had gathered. Unlike Chamberlain, Daladier knew what the scrap of paper was worth, assumed he was looking at protesters and circled the airport while the police were reinforced. When he landed and discovered he was being cheered he said these fools did not know what they were cheering.
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Re: Siddermark Going the Way of the Wiemer Republic? (Spoile
Post by Bluesqueak   » Sat Feb 16, 2019 1:51 pm

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Dilandu wrote:
SilverbladeTE wrote:Genetically modified crops have become a disaster


Could you please claim something less ridiculous? Like "Earth is flat", for example? I constantly work with GM-crops, and frankly, failed to notice any kind of "disaster".


Well, it looks flat. :lol:

I cheerfully admit my personal jury is out on GM crops until we've been eating the things for, oh, twenty years or so. But that's my perspective from the (relatively) rich UK - death from malnutrition or starvation is considerably more important than any possible long term side effects that we might not know about. Just label the stuff and let's go forward.

I realise you're an expert on this area - but the UK has bad memories of the BSE crisis in cattle, then the following panic over human vCJD. That was aggravated by the experts of the day not properly understanding prion diseases and assuring a worried populace that they were just imagining that scrapie could be transmitted to cattle as BSE, and the very idea that it could pass to humans...

And then not yet understanding that it was going to be very, very difficult to get vCJD, even if you had eaten a hamburger temptingly laced with BSE prions. So first we had 'this is impossible, you are idiots!', then we had 'We're all going to die!' From the people who were supposed to be the experts...

I can't imagine why people in the UK should be so willing to disbelieve the experts when it comes to GM. :twisted:

Dilandu wrote:
SilverbladeTE wrote:Claims that genes wouldn't propagate to other species soon proved vainglorious stupidity.


From your side - yes.

Cross fertilisation is as old as ... plants, really. So probably not stupid - just that it's over-exaggerated. I suppose it's technically possible that some particular GM crop may prove to contain some hitherto unsuspected nasty which turns us all into zombies, but the chance it's going to hybridise - you'd know that better than me. My understanding is that the whole thing is as unlikely as ... well, vCJD turning out to be due to BSE in cattle, which was transmitted from scrapie in sheep.

But 'cross-contamination' is a popular meme, mainly derived from a court case where a farmer insisted that his 1000 acres of Canola was entirely GM because the seed'd flown in on the wind/via birds and was not in any way because he'd, y'know, nicked it, planted it and then tried to breed it for himself.
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Re: Siddermark Going the Way of the Wiemer Republic? (Spoile
Post by Dilandu   » Sat Feb 16, 2019 3:16 pm

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Dilandu wrote:Cross fertilisation is as old as ... plants, really. So probably not stupid - just that it's over-exaggerated.


I'm afraid, SilverbladeTE actually means that genes from the plants you eat would somehow jump into your DNA (the common horror story among the ignorant clowns, I mean, anti-GMO activists)

Considering cross-pollination between plant species - yes, it existed. And yes, there are some "gene leakage" that way. My PhD paper was actually about the cross-pollination between hexaploid triticale and her parental species (wheat and rye). And yes, there is a possibility that some genes from, for example, GM-wheat would find their way into related weeds. The result... well, it would actually depend on what exactly was transferred. If it is, for example, genes that controlled higher protein content of the grain, then at worst we would have rather nutritious weed) If it is genes, that controlled resistance to some herbicide, however... well, we would have weed resistant to this particular herbicide. Not exactly pleasant, but far from catastrophic.

But this basically work only with rather simple traits, that could be controlled by small complex of genes. If the traits are more complex - like productivity traits (which are composed of a large number of sub-elements), the probability of "gene leakage" is almost zero. It would require truly improbable chain of events for large gene complex to be completely transferred from wheat to some weed in workable condition.

And most importantly - the gene leakage isn't linked with GM in any way. It's the natural effect of cross-pollination. It works exactly the same way with the genes, that were introduced into crops by millenia-old procedures of crossing & selection. ;)
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- Who would won in battle between strawman Liberal-Democrat and strawman Conservative-Republican?
- Scarecrow from Oz; he was strawman before it became political.

P.S. - And he have Russian twin, to watch his back)
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Re: Siddermark Going the Way of the Wiemer Republic? (Spoile
Post by Joat42   » Sun Feb 17, 2019 5:41 am

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Bluesqueak wrote:..snip..
But 'cross-contamination' is a popular meme, mainly derived from a court case where a farmer insisted that his 1000 acres of Canola was entirely GM because the seed'd flown in on the wind/via birds and was not in any way because he'd, y'know, nicked it, planted it and then tried to breed it for himself.

It's not a popular meme - it's an actual thing, otherwise there shouldn't be directions on how to plant crops to avoid cross-contamination.

Just google for "Planting practices to minimize GMO pollen contamination".

---
Jack of all trades and destructive tinkerer.


Anyone who have simple solutions for complex problems is a fool.
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Re: Siddermark Going the Way of the Wiemer Republic? (Spoile
Post by Bluesqueak   » Sun Feb 17, 2019 2:18 pm

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Joat42 wrote:
Bluesqueak wrote:..snip..
But 'cross-contamination' is a popular meme, mainly derived from a court case where a farmer insisted that his 1000 acres of Canola was entirely GM because the seed'd flown in on the wind/via birds and was not in any way because he'd, y'know, nicked it, planted it and then tried to breed it for himself.

It's not a popular meme - it's an actual thing, otherwise there shouldn't be directions on how to plant crops to avoid cross-contamination.

Just google for "Planting practices to minimize GMO pollen contamination".


That was what Dilandu and I both said - cross fertilisation is as old as plants. "Cross contamination" is a problem caused by the strict regulations on what can be considered 'non-GMO' crops. The regulations are designed to separate GMO and non-GMO plants.

If a farmer is selling a wind pollinated crop to a particular market (often a premium market), they need to keep within those regulations, and need to not plant next door to a GMO crop that can fertilise their crop. Most of the studies are discussing how far away farmers need to plant - to obtain less than 1% cross pollination with GMO. Dilandu would know more than I do.

Most of the memes I saw when I was researching this, however, (it was for a novel) were arguing that your entire crop would magically turn GMO and then a certain large agri-business would sue your pants off because you were growing their product without a licence. Which is a fun sub-plot to use in a novel, but novels aren't real life. :D

There's a similar 'isolation distance requirement' if you're growing gluten-free oats. The most severe sufferers from Celiac disease often can't tolerate even the small amount of gluten caused by growing the oats next to wheat, rye or barley. From the farmer's point of view, gluten-free oats are a higher value crop than normal oats, so something you wouldn't normally bother about (growing oats next to a barley field) becomes 'cross-contamination.'
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Re: Siddermark Going the Way of the Wiemer Republic? (Spoile
Post by Dilandu   » Sun Feb 17, 2019 3:01 pm

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Bluesqueak wrote:
If a farmer is selling a wind pollinated crop to a particular market (often a premium market), they need to keep within those regulations, and need to not plant next door to a GMO crop that can fertilise their crop. Most of the studies are discussing how far away farmers need to plant - to obtain less than 1% cross pollination with GMO. Dilandu would know more than I do.


Well, I could say that triticale cultivars clearly need isolation from rye and other triticale varieties, but standard isolation prescribed for cereals (about 200 meters in Russia, not sure about other countries) seems to be quite enough. From wheat, isolation is basically not important - the spontaneous triticale-rye hybrids are so rare. In fact, even in most favorable experimental conditions (when both triticale & wheat spikes were put in common isolator), there were only a few hybrids obtained at all, per thousands of triticale plants.


Most of the memes I saw when I was researching this, however, (it was for a novel) were arguing that your entire crop would magically turn GMO and then a certain large agri-business would sue your pants off because you were growing their product without a licence. Which is a fun sub-plot to use in a novel, but novels aren't real life. :D


Well, it's actually a real potential problem - copyright violation due to cross-pollination. ;) Not so much with self-pollinating cultures, but the cross-pollination could be... rather legally tricky, because if it was gene construct, rather than cultivar itself being stolen, then the law entered a particular grey zone here.
------------------------------

- Who would won in battle between strawman Liberal-Democrat and strawman Conservative-Republican?
- Scarecrow from Oz; he was strawman before it became political.

P.S. - And he have Russian twin, to watch his back)
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Re: Siddermark Going the Way of the Wiemer Republic? (Spoile
Post by SilverbladeTE   » Sun Feb 17, 2019 7:42 pm

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Dilandu
Your puirblind support for your "god being/industry" is a common and huge problem throughout history and part of what I've tried to warn of for a very long time.
The road to Hell is paved with good intentions....

No, I absolutely did NOT say or imply "GM crop genes get into Humans and turn us into rabid, bum-scratching mutants! :roll: :lol: Jeesh!
It is established fact that genes are not merely spread by pollination, but by VIRUSES.
By this I refer to GM crops resistance to glyphosate spreading.
And as I said the reality was a certain corporation wanted excuse to sell more weedkiller and control more farming by using corrupt or stupid politicians and academics to interfere with law and sales for corporations benefit.

To often I've seen folk like yourself brashly push their agendas, greedy corporations etc use it as excuses for blood profits, corrupt government officials cover the disasters up and folk like and my family suffer for it...with the Public only finally accepting of the problem after the victims are long dead.
And then the "Establishment" covers it up, more worried about their reputations or links to chemical corporations selling pesticides and x ray dyes they KNEW were toxic.

Bah, you'll never learn.
Lysenko was a fraud and a thug.
Ivory frikkin' towers.... :(
As said, this stuff is personal, not academic.
You get caught in the gears as I have and then you might change yer tune, boyyo.

Anyway for rest of you, some useful things to research and *consider*:
Dr John Bodkin Adams
Gulf War Syndrome
Who exactly invented V and VX nerve gas and.why does the British government still lie about their pet German scientists having been purely "pesticide researchers"?
Vozrozhedinya Island disaster.
Uranium hexaflouride.
Camelford Water poisoning disaster.

Facts and risks to the Public mean nothing when power, ego and profits are at play.


Anyway back to Safehold, a fictional place.which has a largely benign leadership in one Empire, thank God for that! :D
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Re: Siddermark Going the Way of the Wiemer Republic? (Spoile
Post by phillies   » Thu Feb 21, 2019 3:30 pm

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With respect to current H Sapiens, there was once upon a time an extended report, the Coleman report iirc, on education in the United States. One of the issues they looked at -- I think I remember the right report, from close to 60 years ago -- was how many children people had, relative to IQ scores. These were understood to be fairly inaccurate, but they split people into four groups by relative scores, demonstrating that people in the bottom quarter had few children, and people in the top quarter or tenth, on the average, had lots of children. Thus, evolution advances.

Is there a genetic component to intelligence for the MA to amplify? Recent English research demonstrates yes, finding ca. 60 genetic markers that predispose you toward being smart. We also already have techniques that successfully modify the genome, as the Chinese scientist recently proved.
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Re: Siddermark Going the Way of the Wiemer Republic? (Spoile
Post by SilverbladeTE   » Fri Feb 22, 2019 12:25 pm

SilverbladeTE
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Living within 50 yards of a major road in the UK tended to reduce the IQ of children by 10 points
Had nothing to do with genetics, it had everything to do with scum in power who allowed tetraethyl lead to be used in cars, fumes deposited lead in children's brains.
Rich and powerful folk rarely lived near such roads, or industrial sites.

With collapse of metal factories especially smelters as an industry, stricter controls on heavy metals, we have seen a massive decrease in violent crime and some mental disorders.
We have also.learned that more and more mental disorders are not psychological, but biological.

And we have also learned that their is a greatly disproportionate amount of sociopaths in postions of power than there should be by mere chance (scum seek power as they dont care about harm from their actions, empathic people are concerned and wary of power in general).


Science is not about "Certainty".
If you want Certainty, Theology is at the end of the hallway, next to the closet for disasters, conceit and where victims often get relegated.

Eventually, altering the Human Genome might be a wise and useful thing. Possibly, essential, such as for colonisation of alien worlds.
For the foreseeable future...it would be an unparalleled disaster.
Jealousy, fear and arrogance would inevitably lead to woes of terrifying consequence.

That short list I posted are but fractional highlights that should be investigated, understood and encourage caution.

I am not antiScience, quite the reverse, I'm just painfully, literally, aware of the fact Science is not the "perfect being" some hold it as. Human Nature is way more potent :mrgreen:

The Inner Circle have access to records thus can thank God avoid repeating many horrors and disasters.
We don't have that luxury.
We live on ONE biosphere, we cannot afford more disasters.
For example, having around half a million tons of uranium hexaflouride, plus other long term "nasties", when Climate Change is likely to trigger global wars triggered by stresses, food shortages etc...is scary as hell.
Essential maintenance and safety will break down, lunatics may bomb civilian reactor sites etc.
So, the incredibly short sighted lust by to force civilian reactor designs to produce plutonium as their real #1 goal, for bombs, for power mad nincompoops...damned the long term security of the Human Race.

Fukushima and Chernobyl disasters only occurred because reactor design was utterly compromised for the lust for bomb materiel.
If we'd went instead for thorium fuelled designs...but, Human Nature got in the way of that :(
Fukushima is an *on going* massive threat, if for nothing else, storage tanks of water that volume of that level of contamination....on a major earthquake zone...?!
Ever shaken a cup of say, hot tea or coffee?


Genetics is an incredibly important field of study.
But direct genetic manipulation of Ye Homo Not-so-Sapien at this point in time, would be like deciding to redesign and rebuild your cruiser, while in action, without radar, in the dark, in a maelstrom in a hurricane, in the far South Atlantic...with Captain Queeg in command!
The rebuild designed by eggheads and bureaucrats with no practical experience and half the engineers crooks and incompetents.
Yeah, that'd turn out well! :lol:
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