03 November 2008

Coal -- who knew?

You may have noticed that other than noting signage of various candidates for POTUS, blog entries have been largely apolitical, This isn't really any exception but for the fact that the latest tempest in teapot trying to stem the tide of a Democratic landslide reaction to the last 8 years, is this whole coal bankrupting Obama quote/misquote.

So how crazy is it that one of my most active in process reads is Coal, A Human History by Barbara Freese?

It's been a fascinating, if somewhat quirky read. My interest comes largely from the fact that I'm from coal mining stock so who I am and even that I am is very much tied to coal. But how coal shaped society and industry is not just for the coal connected crowd. In truth, the last few of chapters work back 'round to the author's own environmentalism and get a bit global warming eyes glaze -- which is walkabout speak for interesting but tough to slog through.

I did have a certain amount of nostalgia for my law school days when reading about acid rain and the discussion of coal mining in China was also a bit of a return to the days when a huge amount of my time, energy and brain power was all about the tensions between emerging industrial economies and the "been there done that don't want others to experience" attitude of the developed world nation states.

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