mtoplikar (Matt Toplikar)


Comment history

Global threat

Geologists believe ANWR holds about 10.4 billion barrels of oil. This might last us about a year and a half at best. Geologists estimate about 60 billion barrels of oil in the Gulf of Mexico. This might take us another 10 years, but offshore drilling is much more expensive, so if you want to rely on it for our supplies, oil prices will still go up. These figures are of course only reliable if our oil consumption doesn't increase which is of course unlikely seeing as how it's been steadily increasing for some time.By comparison, Saudi Arabia which has the largest discovered oil field is estimated to have around 260 billion barrels.You also have to take into account that after about half of an oil field is drained (the peak) it becomes increasingly difficult and more expensive to extract the oil from the field due to a drop in pressure. Also, the oil past the peak is not as energy dense and takes more effort and money to refine.Again-- not trying to be an alarmist or a pessimist, just saying this isn't something we should procrastinate about.

January 11, 2009 at 2:59 p.m. ( | suggest removal )

Global threat

XD40:Just to clarify. Yes Peak Oil theory has been around since the 1950s. It successfully predicted when oil production peaked in the U.S. during the 1970s, and has been predicting many other country's peaks with very accurate results. As you say, it is true that more oil deposits have been found since Peak Oil theory was proposed, however, if you look at the data there has a been a significant and sharp decline of oil discoveries over the last 60 years. In other words oil discoveries have become significantly smaller and less frequent for quite some time. When you read in the news that we've recently found 10 million barrels of oil somewhere, it might sound like a lot, but in comparison to how much we actually use (19.6 million in the U.S.) on a daily basis, it doesn't put much of a dent in our regular consumption.

January 11, 2009 at 1:08 p.m. ( | suggest removal )

Global threat

Being an alarmist is one thing, seeing a problem and wanting to do something about it is another. People should not be scared, but they should be aware so they can plan accordingly. If you want to argue that Peak Oil won't happen for 30 years that's fine. I respectfully disagree, but let's take that assumption just the same. If we have 30 years before our oil prices start skyrocketing to a point where the price of oil becomes drastically more expensive than the average person can afford; if we have 30 years before the price of oil significantly affects shipping prices of goods and foods; if we have 30 years before the price of oil hikes up the cost of plastic, cosmetics, pesticide, clothing, paint, glue, soap, etc.. it's probably a good idea to start really thinking about this problem before it gets the better of us.If affordable electric cars came out today, it still might take 20 years before most people had one, because most people only buy a car every 7-10 years or more and many of those are used cars. Not to mention the fact that the infrastructure to build and maintain electric cars on a mass scale is nowhere in sight. But even when we have a full squad of electric cars driving the roads, we'll have to find a way to pay for the extra electrical costs with either coal, nuclear, solar, or wind power plants. These things take years to build and take much energy and money themselves. Replacing our outdated power grids for solar and wind generators will likely cost trillions of dollars, while opening a massive amount of new nuclear plants is unlikely until we actually come up with a way to dispose of the waste.I'm not saying this to alarm anyone. I'm just saying that all of this stuff is going to take a lot of time and a lot of money so we might as well start now.

January 10, 2009 at 4:36 p.m. ( | suggest removal )

Lawrence's loss

Larry_The_Moocher (Anonymous) says:"If you feel so strongly there Janet: Get "Your" checkbook out: dont feel free to spend your neighbors money!"I guess I understand your sentiment Larry, but come on now, you know that's not really a feasible solution. It's one thing to say-- "I've got my own problems-- I don't care if people lose their jobs because they can't get to work."It's another thing to pretend they or a handful of good Samaritans will have the money to fund a Lawrence bus line. I realize you hate the idea of someone forcing you into "doing the right thing"-- especially during tough economic times, but lets be real here-- if you don't vote YES and this thing doesn't pass, the people who rely on the bus aren't going to have the option you're proposing. If you're looking for a more selfish reason to invest in a bus line, think 5-10 years into the future, when gas is $8/ gallon. Most of the Lawrence economy is based around service industry jobs that don't pay much. And trust me, college students won't have the money to afford the kind of energy crisis that we're all headed for. If the T gets cut now, it's going to have to be rebuilt from scratch, which is much more costly. A decade from now, I'd rather not be asking myself why the town doesn't already have a public transportation system in place.

October 30, 2008 at 3:25 p.m. ( | suggest removal )

Do you find it difficult to ally yourself with either major political party?

This is hilarious! I am shocked and amazed at how many people actually thought the first two people were being serious. When Ali G/Borat first came out, I always figured that if it ever happened in Lawrence folks would be too smart to fall for anything like that. I guess I was wrong if there are so many readers that can't even pick up the obvious sarcasm in these quotes.Let me reassure you guys one last time. They are kidding-- don't freak out-- jokes are funny.

September 29, 2008 at 2:24 a.m. ( | suggest removal )

LHS sophomore sent home for wearing 'hazing' outfit

LHS administrators need to grow up. Part of being an adult is realizing that silliness has its place in life. I've had three sisters that have been through S.W.A.S.-- Yes its stupid, but its also harmless. Give this girl a break.

September 27, 2008 at 5:43 p.m. ( | suggest removal )

Uplifting T tale

To those who think that people who use the T. are freeloaders, let me ask you this...Is someone who's house is burning down a freeloader when the fire department shows up-- my house isn't burning so why should I have to pay for it?What about people who's kids use the public schools? I don't have kids-- why should I have to pay for it? Sounds like a bunch of freeloadin' brats to me.While I'm thinking about it, why should I have to pay for the police? I've never had a break-in or a loved one murdered-- in fact the whole judicial system seems like a waste of MY money.I just don't understand this logic at all. If you don't want to pay for the "freeloading" T riders to use the bus, then don't ask them to pay for the roads and streetlights and roundabouts that people who have cars use. We live in a society where we all depend on each other for various things-- so get over it or get out.

September 14, 2008 at 6:05 p.m. ( | suggest removal )

Church's liberal views cited in shootings

Well said duplenty-- and while I might not agree with parkay's tone or politics, he's right about one thing... the media will eat this up.Who wants to guess how many magazines will write columns, or how many cable news shows will air segments that formulaicly ask "Is this the result of a systemic problem in America?"Unfortunately (as is usually the case) this is not a question that can be answered with a half-week's worth of reporting-- so more than likely we'll be hearing a lot of shallowly researched opinion from both sides of the political spectrum on why this nut-job shot up a church.

July 29, 2008 at 3:18 p.m. ( | suggest removal )

More local food

Marion,How's the view from the cheap seats? I'm not involved in the Community Garden (no need for quotation marks), but it hardly seems the kind of project to waste your venom on.Something tells me you're the type who looks at a Habitat for Humanity house and mocks the architectural design.What's next-- you gonna sit at the back of a grade school orchestra recital just to pick out the parts where the kids are off tempo?Maybe you'll be too busy searching the Lawrence Athletic Club to find fat people to make fun of. Seriously, are you like this in real life or just online?

July 28, 2008 at 2:29 a.m. ( | suggest removal )

T is vital

Yes, an energy crisis... a failing economy... traffic congestion... obviously, my first impulse (it's only logical) would be to get rid of public transportation. Why would we want to help the poor get to work while simultaneously using less energy and taking more cars off the road?But aside from the logical absurdities, I think we may be acting a bit cold-hearted toward the people who rely on the T. If these people really need the it to get around, then we shouldn't be so dismissive about their needs. Isn't the whole point of living in a society that we all need each other to move forward together? There are plenty of public services that may not directly apply to me, but do indirectly make my life better by making my neighbor's life better. I'm sure there are examples of when it works vice-versa. I guess I always felt grateful that I live in a country where there's a modest amount of obligation to your fellow man-- not just because it's probably the right thing to do, but because we realize that nobody can do it on their own. If there's problems with the T, it doesn't seem very constructive to generalize it's users and/or supporters as being some sort of free-loaders or communists. Throwing out loaded words like "marxism" and "socialism" seems a bit drastic and hypocritical given the abundant use of public transportation (as well as other public services) in our very capitalistic country. If gas prices double again in the next year (a definite possibility) there will be much more demand for public transportation. Lawrence's economy is based largely around service industry workers that can't afford to have necessities increase at such rates without drastic changes happening--like using public transportation. Why cut the legs out from under a service that has an almost guaranteed future?-- Ok... stepping down from the soapbox now.

July 27, 2008 at 10:30 p.m. ( | suggest removal )