Jul 16 2010

Week’s end links

Published by at 1:09 pm under follow the link chain

C’mon all you non-capitalists, let’s hear your rants on this one!

Coral snake antivenin about to disappear

And capitalists who want to play, take a moment and explain how the above situation is a good or necessary part of said system, since it certainly affronts my inner scientist at the least…


How to reduce dependence on air-conditioning

I have some friends who have chosen a non-A/C life here in Central TX, and while I’m not against the concept I do think the article writer was a bit idealistic on some parts and glossed over important other parts. (The toss-off line in there about how some homes designed with A/C in mind might be hard to modify safely to a non-A/C lifestyle — oh, you mean like every home in the last 50 years? — is a perfect example.  My friends succeed at their lifestyle in large part because their home was built in the 1940s and catches breezes MUCH better than our two-story model-realtor-home rental monstrosity.)

And yet, next week we’ll be working around here on ways to make our use of A/C more efficient (one of those serendipitous timing things where I made the chore decision and then half-a-day later found this article), thanks to a hideous electric bill last month.  Not surprising, since adding a new person to a household always causes hiccups and shifts during the transition period.

What do you do to keep the heat down — especially you poor non-A/Ced Northern folk dealing with a dangerous heat wave this year?  (Oh by the way, Texas has had one of the most mild summers in the past decade — mid-80s in July, what madness!)


(from Jay Lake’s blog)

Foreign bank re-thinks lending strategies while squashing stereotypes

As far as I’m concerned, they can’t expand fast enough.  Go, Grameen!

3 responses so far

3 Responses to “Week’s end links”

  1. Ethanon 28 Jul 2010 at 9:26 am

    Hi Reesa,

    First, I hope you are feeling better!

    To answer your question regarding Coral Snake antivenom.

    We do not have a capitalist system in the United States, we have a mixed economy. This is often overlooked. In these days of the new depression we hear how the free market ran too free an unregulated, and look what happened, but this clever piece of disinforamtion ignores the roots of the problem, which was government control. I recommend listening to the “planet money” podcast on NPR where you’ll find out how the Federal Reserve and Fannie Mae and Freddie Mac are the roots of the current economic down-turn.

    As an example of the above “the only antivenom approved by the Food and Drug Administration for coral snake bites.” What’s up with that? If I wanted to produce an antivenom to replace the one from Wyeth/Pfizer how much is it going to cost me to make it? How many regulatory hoops will I be forced to jump through. Will the government then force me to produce it at a loss?



  2. Reesaon 28 Jul 2010 at 10:12 pm

    @Ethan — Thanks for responding! It’s an interesting contrast to the argument I’ve read elsewhere, that we should have a section in the budget of government specifically to fund such things as these situations, that don’t work on a profit-driven model but never-the-less serve a public service.

    I think the links I followed showed that the FDA was willing to “streamline” the process of antivenin approval so it would only take 3 years and x million dollars instead of 5 years and x+y milllion dollars, but that no company was willing to go through even the speedy approval process because they were incredibly unlikely to ever make back the investment of money through the sale of antivenin.

    My health seems to be steadily improving, thanks! It looks like there might be more surgery in my future but for now I am enjoying the return to health.

  3. […] one reader’s take on living the non-A/C way on her own journal.  The lovely Andrea O’Sullivan of Natural Obsessions Fiber is […]