Thirty one people in Europe recently died from contamination of bean sprouts by E coli, many more were sickened. The sprouts were grown on an organic farm in Bienenbüttel south of Hamburg in Germany. The strain that causes problems is E. coli O157:H7. This variant of the bacteria produces a toxin that causes the hemolytic-uremic syndrome a disorder closely related to thrombotic thombocytic purpura. The manifestations of this disease range from mild to lethal. E coli which is found in feces is more likely to contaminate food grown on organic farms than on that originating from farms that use artificial fertilizers.
The reaction of the German government has been interesting. They closed the offending farm, but they did not shutter organic farms in general. They did, however, announce that all German nuclear reactors would be closed by 2022. How many people have died from German nuclear accidents? None.
Doesn’t matter, we are an energy thirsty society, nuclear reactors are not essential. Nuclear energy and “other advances” have not made a better society, the current society is not any happier than the first pithecanthropus that started to think, nor this epoch any better than others, or do you think that what we call progress has made us better? If Fleming solved the problem of the infections, we have created more with that solution
“nuclear reactors are not essential.” Totally agree…….
*****the current society is not any happier than the first pithecanthropus that started to think*******
Wouldn’t you have to be an eternal being inside every brain past and present to know this???? But I might cede to you that “herdiness” seems to be required by sooooooooooo many, whether modern or tribal.
“we have created more with that solution.” Is not that the nature of knowledge??
************other advances” have not made a better society********
What would your definition of a ‘better’ society be?? I am curious. And how could your idea of a better society be implemented???
Solon, I am also very curious as to what makes you happy…
What makes me happy? a’lot of things. Above I may sound (taste?) bitter, however I enjoy a broad spectrum of things: from watching the wild nature, to read your posts, the smell of a (real) farm, a cascade where you can enter without too much vigilance and regulations, the bread in Transylvania, it also makes me happy the homemade wine from eastern european farmers with their company, and a long etc (as you can see I am very mundane)
I do not believe in a “better society”, I think this is impossible no matter what we do (our history has taught me this)
Modern sufficiency is unlimited: we believe that we are more advanced and deeper than the former centuries, however I do not believe that our truths worth more than those of our ancestors. We have substituted their myths and symbols to concepts, and yet, we believe ourselves more advanced. The tree of life, Eve, The Eden, mean as much as life, knowledge, temptation and subconsciousness.
At least I can live reasonably happy despite this concepts that most people may not be able to listen, consider or live with.
******(as you can see I am very mundane****
*****watching the wild nature…****
I was in South Africa………talk about wild nature, much of it quite unique.
If I thought of the masses, I might have similar opinions as yours….I simply choose not to think of them. I don’t even have television.
I am relieved you have so much joy. Your first post sounded so morbid.
If you would be the earth Dr Kurtzman, what would prefer to be infected from: Escherichia coli or Homo sapiens?
Morbid again!! How about a dose of Offenbach??
Operafilly, you made me laugh, thank you for the suggestion: “Today I will listen to Jacques Offenbach”. (good) Music makes me believe that we could be divine.
****the smell of a (real) farm***
My compost pile is the size of a semi. Never dreamed it could be appreciated for fragrance!!
****(good) Music makes me believe that we could be divine****
M. Chaufleurie (cabbage) is one of my favorite short Offenbach shows. Great Rossini parody.
Quote: “How many people have died from German nuclear accidents? None.” Correct, because there has not been a major nuclear accident in Germany like Harrisburg, Chernobyl or Fukushima.
However, there have been mysterious incidences of so far unexplained child leucemia in the lee of some German nuclear power stations. Some of the affected children have died.
If all secondary and tertiary costs of nuclear power were calculated, nuclear power would be the by far most expensive form of energy production. This is why the German government, under pressure by a large majority of the population, decided to opt out of nuclear power. A simple democratic process. And no government wants to lsoe the nex election.
“Wer meines Speeres Spitze fürchtet, durchschreite das Feuer nie.” Perhaps we Germans have had one or two Wotans too many and do not wish to experience another Götterdämmerung.
*****If all secondary and tertiary costs of nuclear power were calculated, nuclear power would be the by far most expensive form of energy production.******
I remember the hype 40 years ago. That it would be so cheap it wouldn’t even be metered. Could the ludicrous damning of CO2 as a pollutant be a current ploy for yet more nuclear plants…..
@ Operafilly: you are quite correct, I remember this hype too. The “too cheap to meter” argument referred to the fast plutonium breeder. Not a single power station of this type went into commercial service, not even in the Soviet Union or in France (Super Phénix).
Neil´s criticism of the painfully slow procedures of the north German health authorities is justified. It took them two weeks to form a task force. It has recently been established that it was not bean sprouts, but sprouts from fenugreek (trigonella foenum-graecum) imported from Egypt which caused the E-coli poisoning with over 4000 infected and 50 dead who had contracted the fatal kidney disease HUS (haemolytic uraemic syndrome)
I was in northern Germany – not far from the centers of the disease – during the climax of the epidemy to see two Hoffmenn ( http://www.myway.de/hoffmann/1011-kiel.html ) and ( http://www.myway.de/hoffmann/1011-osna.html – one of the best ever), followed by a good Tosca in Hamburg and a grandiose Lady Macbeth of Mzensk (directed by Neuenfels) at the Komische Oper Berlin.
I was quite relieved when I was back home in Munich and the incubation period was over.
An open air Hoffmann in Cyprus will be next.
Giftig gießt sich ein Geifer ihm aus: (poisonous slobber is poured onto him)
wen mit des Speichels Schweiß er bespeit, (whom he spit with spittle´s sweat)
dem schwinden wohl Fleisch und Gebein. (he will relinquish flesh and bones)
Daß des Geifers Gift mich nicht sehre, (Lest slobber´s venom doth affect me)
weich’ ich zur Seite dem Wurm. (I avoid the lindworm)
I assume the Hoffmenn were in German? I adore Offenbach. Were I rich I’d have a theatre devoted to his works. This world needs some high quality humour..and fun music.
As for electricity…..why not more 3 phase?? I was told power companies limit it as its so cheap. In a neighboring county they will not supply less than a 20 horsepower motor. I was lucky to have a 5 horse 3 phase well pump and could water 3 acres daily for $1.60 a day.
Yes, Kiel and Osnabrück are in (northern) Germany. About five new Hoffmann productions are staged in Germany every year – after this opera was boycotted by the stupid Nazis 1933 – 1945 because of Offenbach´s Jewish family background. Before that unfortunate period Hoffmann was rarely played after two theaters had burnt down during Hoffmann performances, killing several hundred spectators. Superstitious company directors suspected the appearance of the diabolic antagonist was responsible for those catastrophies.
There will be six new Hoffmann productions and two revivals in Germany in the coming season, and one new production in Austria http://www.myway.de/hoffmann/aktuell.html Usually small local theaters in towns of 50.000 or 200.000 inhabitants present more adventurous and experimental interpretations than the metropolitan stages in Frankfurt or Hamburg, with the Berlin Komische Oper with its revolutionary Thilo Reinhardt production forming an exception: http://www.myway.de/hoffmann/07-berlin.html The theater, by the way, is only half a mile away from Lutter´s tavern in which the whole thing takes place. E.T.A.´s local was destroyed in WW II, but rebuilt in style only 300 yards away http://www.l-w-berlin.de/ There is a Hoffmann-room to commemorate the poet.
An Offenbach theater has been planned in Paris for some time, but not realised. This is sad, since nowadays there are only two French operas which belong to the international top favorites, Carmen and the Contes d´Hoffmann (composed by a naturalised German, with La Bohème really being an Italian opera though often sung in French). Most other French operas are rarely performed in our time. Offenbach´s operettas Orphée and Belle Hélène are very popular in continental Europe with frequent new productions. In Great Britain Offenbach is less popular with his pacifist works, often making fun of royalty and the military.
A theater solely devoted to Offenbach´s oeuvre could direct more attention to other equally good works like Vie parisienne with the famous Can-Can etc.
I fully agree that we need more quality humour and quality popular music in an age of commerical TV game show, Rap and Heavy Metal.
Three-phase electricity is used mainly for motor and heavy applications. It is not cheaper than two-phase AC, but simpler to transport, and can easily be split up into two-phase AC. See http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Three-phase_electric_power (An unusual topic on this page, I admit, but Neil started it with his remarks on nuclear power)
****simpler to transport**** maybe why its so much cheaper??
I was always amused that marvelous French music was written by Germans (Meyerbeer aussi).
****A theater solely devoted to Offenbach´s oeuvre****
I believe it would attract much larger audiences here than opera, and perhaps get more interested in opera too.
So far I’ve only had videos……..so you are way ahead of me.
It took me some time to find facts about the health risks for Germany after the Chernobyl disaster.
An easterly wind transported large quantities of radionucleids westward. Most of it rained down in southern Bavaria, north of the Alps. (I remember it well, since I was covering the roof of a shed and took much of the rain in order to finish the roof). More than half of caesium 137 (Cs137) which has a half life of 30.2 years is still around, and it is still not recommended to eat local mushrooms and meat from deer and boars here. The Chernobyl radiation in my area topped the levels after the height of the US and Soviet nuclear tests in the sixties before a test ban in the atmosphere was agreed. See graphs on Cs137. http://www.oeko.de/files/download/application/pdf/20a_tschernobyl.pdf
The medical consequences are now well documented. Around nine months after the Chernobyl disaster twice as many babies with Down Syndrome were born all over Germany. Child leucemia had risen by around 50 per cent in the years following. Neuroblastoms with babies rose significantly in those areas where much Cs137 and Cs134 had rained down. See http://www.ippnw.de/commonFiles/pdfs/Atomenergie/Gesundheitliche_Folgen_Tschernobyl.pdf
Other increased incidences of cancer can not be allocated to fallout from Chernobyl with scientific certainty as they range within longterm statistical variation.
The population around Chernobyl was much more affected, unfortunately. A Ukranian nurse told me that many general hospitals had to be converted into cancer clinics.
“I was always amused that marvelous French music was written by Germans (Meyerbeer aussi).”
We krauts are all very typical as presented in Hollywood films.
I hereby state:
I compose at least one military march every week and practice it with my neighbors by marching our oompah brass band up and down our street. Blonde girls with pigtails line the street and hail us. They look like http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Yulia_Tymoshenko
Sauerkraut is my favorite dish for breakfast, lunch and supper and forms a major component of our famous cream pastry. In order to survive here, McDonalds had to create a sauerkraut burger for the German market.
We all drink large quantities of beer, a beverage virtually unknown to the rest of the world.
For time reasons I had to reduce my Wagner opera attendances to .93 per day.
Vee oll no longer speak Chörmän hier, but Englisch wiss a hävy Chörmän aktcent.
Germans who compose marvelous French-style music are deported to Paris immediately.
And, surprise, surprise, about nine out of ten Hoffmenn performed here are sung in French. I cannot guarantee that the audience notice the difference since they do not understand a word anyway, whether sung in German or in French. The French versions, however, have the advantage of being surtitled in German so that the audience are kept busy reading the text which reduces their risk of falling asleep during the opera.
WOW!!! And they say Germans have no sense of humour!! You are a gem, Gerhart. Wish I could join your band, esp. if it plays Offenbach, or even Seldombach……..You certainly are not a sour kraut.
Tkank you, Operafilly.
Offenbach did in fact compose a military march, as far as I know his only one, for his opera buffa La vie parisienne (1866). Compared to his usual musical fantasy this march is so simple and basic (1 – 4 – 5 pattern) that it must be seen as a satire on the corresponding military mind. It can be listened to on Youtube http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=F-L3rB65smI
It is played by a modern German Nato military band, illustrated with pictures of the old German cavalry (whether Nazi or not is difficult to establish), followed by a flag of the old Reichswehr. Similar flags are popular with German Neo-Nazis since flags displaying a swastika are banned in present-day Germany. Offenbach, the pacifist, would have been horrified to see a live gang of real soldiers marching to his music.
What about the marches in Fille du Tambour Major and Grand Duchess??
(“Ah, que j’aime le militaire”)
You are right, of course. But I doubt whether Offenbach ever marched to his own Marschmusik.
If you want to study how we Krauts feed on and cherish sour krout go to the following page featuring a German sour krout dinner by British cartoonist James Gillray (1757 – 1815). Even our dogs seem to love it.
I am amazed at the levels of musical satire (Mozart, Rossini, Gluck, etc.), sometimes even using his own music. And his music is sooooo happy. The overture to Fille du Tambour is my favorite upper.
I love the waitress in the cartoon……what a load. But I don’t read German so I got none of the commentary. Even when I sing something German, its usually in French.
So Gerhart, where did he and you get such humour???? Saur Krout??
“Compared to his usual musical fantasy this march is so simple and basic (1 – 4 – 5 pattern) that it must be seen as a satire on the corresponding military mind.”
It must be admitted that the image of ourselves we presented to the international community in the 20th century was anything but a laughing matter. But nevertheless we do laugh occasionally – usually in a cellar so that nobody notices.
Two days ago our foremost and immensely popular humorist, Loriot, died at the age of 87. http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Vicco_von_B%C3%BClow
Here you can learn some German from him: http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=hRhf98aKsto&NR=1
In 1979, at chancellor Helmut Schmidt´s summer party he conducted the Berlin Philharmonic Orchestra. He impersonated a piano manufacturer who is trying to catch a fly. The orchestra interpret his movements as if he were conducting and play accordingly. http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=r3TE0s1CtW4 Herbert von Karajan and Leonard Bernstein were present.
To return to the original topic of this thread: we lose our humor when nuclear power is at issue. We are squeezed between dozens of shoddy and ageing French reactors in the west and Soviet-type reactors, e.g. Temelin in the Czech Republic, in the east. Since we are so densely populated we would have nowhere to go after a nuclear accident. This is why we want to get rid of our nukes as soon as possible, and hope our neighbors will follow once we have proven that electric energy can be generated by means of renewable resources.
“once we have proven that electric energy can be generated by means of renewable resources.”
About 30 years ago the US was crossed by a wood burning truck. (we could have wood stations instead of gas stations)
A pig farmer captured manure gasses in a series of tanks upside down in other tanks of water. So he didn’t even need to compress the gas. Tanks would raise as gas accumulated. Once he blew off the CO2 he had clean burning methane. I he also powered a generator with it so he has electricity.
And here wacko “environmentalists” (who probably couldn’t pass a basic science class) want to get rid of dams……Damn!! Hydropower serving several purposes is so valuable for agriculture and water supply as well.
Altho why not use the non renewable??? Its not doing anything else.
Bugs Bunny did it first in “Baton Bunny.” Altho I think he was imitating Stowkowski.
In 1979, at chancellor Helmut Schmidt´s summer party he conducted the Berlin Philharmonic Orchestra. He impersonated a piano manufacturer who is trying to catch a fly.