Report from Tehran: What is the Effect of the Sanctions?

My wife, Grazia, in a supermarket in Tehran, today. No effect of the economic sanctions is visible. The shelves are full of goods from everywhere. You can find even Coca Cola cansFor this Monday post on Cassandra’s Legacy, I can offer you just a very brief report from Tehran, Iran, where I am for a … Continue reading “Report from Tehran: What is the Effect of the Sanctions?”

Bimillenary of the death of Germanicus: The Defeat of the Roman Deep State

2,000 years ago, on Oct 10, 19 CE, Germanicus Julius Caesar died in Antioch, Asia Minor, perhaps poisoned by his uncle, Tiberius, then the ruling emperor. If we see Hillary Clinton in the role of Germanicus and Donald Trump in the role of Tiberius, you have an equivalent ongoing conflict. Most likely, the concept of … Continue reading “Bimillenary of the death of Germanicus: The Defeat of the Roman Deep State”

How to Predict the Future: Confessions of a Modern Cassandra

Telling the truth has always been dangerous and the original Cassandra, the Trojan prophetess, had to suffer the consequences for what she said. But there is a more interesting question: how did she manage to be right while everyone else got it wrong? Here I tell you of my experience as a modest 21st century … Continue reading “How to Predict the Future: Confessions of a Modern Cassandra”

Climate Change: A Concise Assessment of What we are Risking.

The text below is a translation of a post that I published in the Italian newspaper “Il Fatto Quotidiano” about two months ago. The idea was to provide a concise statement on the climate situation (no more than 650 words allowed).  I tried to emphasize the risks involved with the “climate tipping points” and criticize … Continue reading “Climate Change: A Concise Assessment of What we are Risking.”

Iran, Oil, and War: The End of the Carter Doctrine?

The “Oil Corridor,” where the largest oil resources in the world are located. It was generated by events that took place during the Jurassic period. Those events can’t be affected by politics, but they can affect politics.For a while, the situation with the USA-Iran standoff looked like a scene in an old Western movie:  two … Continue reading “Iran, Oil, and War: The End of the Carter Doctrine?”

The Profession of Arms: Of Vile Leaders and Courageous Ones

Above, you can see an amazing clip from the 2001 movie by Ermanno Olmi “The Profession of Arms”. It is the story of the march on Rome of the German Landsknechts led by Georg von Frundsberg in 1526. They were faced by an army commanded by Giovanni de’ Medici, known as Giovanni Dalle Bande Nere … Continue reading “The Profession of Arms: Of Vile Leaders and Courageous Ones”

Leader Assassination in the Age of Drones: A Suggestion for an Invulnerable President

Captain Birds Eye and his fish sticks. He is a reassuring, fatherly, positive presence. Why don’t we elect him as president? The advantage is that he can’t be assassinated since he doesn’t exist. Long ago, leaders used to fight on the frontline with their troops. Everything changed with the invention of firearms, when the leaders discovered … Continue reading “Leader Assassination in the Age of Drones: A Suggestion for an Invulnerable President”

The Collapse of the American Empire. What Future for Humankind?

These notes are not supposed to disparage nor to exalt an entity that has a history that goes back to at least a couple of millennia ago. Like all Empires, past and present, the Modern World Empire went through its parable of growth and glory and it is now starting its decline. There is not … Continue reading “The Collapse of the American Empire. What Future for Humankind?”

The Christmas Torches of Abbadia: Sustainable Resource Management According to an Ancient Traditions

This clip is my first attempt at a video on the subject of this blog, resource management. The results are, well, not so great: it is dark and the audio is not very good. I’ll see to do better next time, but it seems to me that the clip is at least understandable and it … Continue reading “The Christmas Torches of Abbadia: Sustainable Resource Management According to an Ancient Traditions”

Polyphonic Music and the Angst of the West: A Christmas Post

Sicut Cervus, by Pierluigi da Palestrina, published in 1604. It sings Psalm 42 of the Vulgata Bible. Maybe this old motet can be seen as a Christmas gift from the Western culture to the rest of humankind (reposted from “Chimeras”)With the waning of the Middle Ages, Europe was coming out of a terrible period. The … Continue reading “Polyphonic Music and the Angst of the West: A Christmas Post”

Why we are Running Toward the Cliff at Full Speed: One of the Reasons is that People Never Change their Mind.

Below, you’ll find a report on a televised debate on climate change of a few days ago, in Italy, in which I participated. Probably, you won’t be familiar with some of the names and the events mentioned, yet, I thought you might found this story interesting enough to be reported in English. After all, there … Continue reading “Why we are Running Toward the Cliff at Full Speed: One of the Reasons is that People Never Change their Mind.”

Why Collapse is not always a bad thing: the new book by Ugo Bardi

If you wish to receive a review copy or want to interview the author, please contact: Elizabeth Hawkins | Springer Nature | Communications tel +49 6221 487 8130 | elizabeth.hawkins@springer.com Press Release Why collapse is not always a bad thingNew book provides an analysis of the process of failure and collapse, and outlines principles that help … Continue reading “Why Collapse is not always a bad thing: the new book by Ugo Bardi”

On Greta Thunberg: A Letter to my Non-Western Friends

Dear non-Western friends,first of all, let me tell you that I understand your perplexity about Greta Thunberg. I understand how you see this latest stunt of the Western Media of naming her “Person of the Year.” From your viewpoint, it looks just like another trick of the West, one among many. And I understand that … Continue reading “On Greta Thunberg: A Letter to my Non-Western Friends”

The Effect of the Sanctions: Is Iran Cracking Down Under the Strain?

I have to confess that the title of this post is a little of a clickbait. In reality, I will tell you more about Italy than about Iran. But, perhaps, from the story of how Italy reacted to the international economic sanctions imposed on the country in 1935, we can learn something about what could … Continue reading “The Effect of the Sanctions: Is Iran Cracking Down Under the Strain?”

RAMSES: The Electric Tractor is Alive and Well in Tehran

The RAMSES vehicle under development in Italy in 2011. In the photo, from the left, the developers: Toufic El Asmar, Paolo Pasquini, and Ugo Bardi.Maybe you read my descriptions of the “RAMSES” electric tractor that I helped to develop some years ago with funding from the European Commission. It was an interesting project and the … Continue reading “RAMSES: The Electric Tractor is Alive and Well in Tehran”

What’s wrong with the oil industry? Too many claims of abundance start sounding suspicious

Above: the Financial Times of Nov 29th, 2019. Has the US really become energy independent?Peak oil theorists have always been the favorite punching ball of mainstream oil pundits but, recently, the attacks against the peak oil idea have started becoming so loud and widespread that I am starting to think that there has to be … Continue reading “What’s wrong with the oil industry? Too many claims of abundance start sounding suspicious”

Like Stalingrad: Italy’s Concrete Infrastructure is Melting in the Rain

The region of Liguria, within the red circle, is a narrow strip of land stuck between the Appennini Mountains and the Tyrrhenian Sea. It is also a critical element of the transportation system that connects France and the Po valley to the rest of Italy. As you may imagine, this heavily urbanized region is subjected … Continue reading “Like Stalingrad: Italy’s Concrete Infrastructure is Melting in the Rain”

Denigrating “The Limits to Growth” is Still a Popular Pastime. But can we Learn Something From it?

Many people seem to be surprised when I tell them that I follow the abominable science denial blog “Watts Up With That” kept by Alan Watts. Yes, it is abominable, sometimes, but it has one feature that makes it stand a couple of notches above the other science denial blogs: it is almost never boring, … Continue reading “Denigrating “The Limits to Growth” is Still a Popular Pastime. But can we Learn Something From it?”

Climategate, 10 Years Later: What Can we Learn About it from Memetics?

Ten years ago, on November 20th, 2009, the “Climategate” story broke into the news, worldwide. At the beginning, it seemed to be just part of the heated debate on climate. Then, its true character appeared more clearly: it was a major demonstration of the power of the media to control the memesphere. Above, an image … Continue reading “Climategate, 10 Years Later: What Can we Learn About it from Memetics?”

Before The Collapse: The New Book by Ugo Bardi

My new book on collapse is out, published by Springer. You can find it at the Springer site at this link (priced in Euro) and at this link (priced in dollars). You can find it also on most Web sites that sell books. Collapse is a popular subject nowadays, so I thought I could add … Continue reading “Before The Collapse: The New Book by Ugo Bardi”

What Future for Africa? A Report from the Meeting of the Club of Rome in Cape Town

Manphela Ramphele (*) and Sandrine Dixon-Decleve, the co-presidents of the Club of Rome, at the start of the meeting of the Club in Cape Town on 5 November 2019 (**). These are somewhat rambling and incomplete notes written immediately after the end of the meeting. Africa? What is Africa, exactly? A continent? A nation? A … Continue reading “What Future for Africa? A Report from the Meeting of the Club of Rome in Cape Town”

“The Limits to Growth” continues to make waves

The Club of Rome is holding its annual meeting in Cape Town, South Africa. In the image, you see the co-president, Sandrine Dixon-Decleve, speakingNow heading toward its 50th anniversary, “The Limits to Growth,” the 1972 study sponsored by the Club of Rome, continues to generate interest. Past is the time of the “Limits-Bashing” fashion, when … Continue reading ““The Limits to Growth” continues to make waves”

Report From Iran: A Country we can’t Ignore

Above, Ugo Bardi giving a talk at the University of Tehran, October 2019Iran is a country that maintains something of the fascination it had in ancient times when it was both fabulous and remote. In our times, it remained somewhat remote but also a country that couldn’t be ignored as it went through a series … Continue reading “Report From Iran: A Country we can’t Ignore”

The West Fades. The Center Quietly Returns: The New Silk Road

An image from the workshop on desalination and mineral extraction from seawater organized by Sharif University in Teheran this week. In the photo, you can see people from Oman (3), Iran (3), South Africa (1), India (1), and Bangladesh (1). It was not only a multi-ethnical group but also a Eurasia-centered one. It gave me … Continue reading “The West Fades. The Center Quietly Returns: The New Silk Road”

Report from Tehran: What is the Effect of the Sanctions?

My wife, Grazia, in a supermarket in Tehran, today. No effect of the economic sanctions is visible. The shelves are full of goods from everywhere. You can find even Coca Cola cansFor this Monday post on Cassandra’s Legacy, I can offer you just a very brief report from Tehran, Iran, where I am for a … Continue reading “Report from Tehran: What is the Effect of the Sanctions?”

Bimillenary of the death of Germanicus: The Defeat of the Roman Deep State

2,000 years ago, on Oct 10, 19 CE, Germanicus Julius Caesar died in Antioch, Asia Minor, perhaps poisoned by his uncle, Tiberius, then the ruling emperor. If we see Hillary Clinton in the role of Germanicus and Donald Trump in the role of Tiberius, you have an equivalent ongoing conflict. Most likely, the concept of … Continue reading “Bimillenary of the death of Germanicus: The Defeat of the Roman Deep State”

The Greatest Extermination in History: How Humans won the war on Whales

Image from the NYT. This dead whale on a California beach and the man taking a selfie in front of it symbolizes the war of humans on whales. The whales lost in what was probably the largest extermination of a non-human species in history. You’ll find more details on this epic story in the upcoming … Continue reading “The Greatest Extermination in History: How Humans won the war on Whales”

How to Predict the Future: Confessions of a Modern Cassandra

Telling the truth has always been dangerous and the original Cassandra, the Trojan prophetess, had to suffer the consequences for what she said. But there is a more interesting question: how did she manage to be right while everyone else got it wrong? Here I tell you of my experience as a modest 21st century … Continue reading “How to Predict the Future: Confessions of a Modern Cassandra”

Climate Change: A Concise Assessment of What we are Risking.

The text below is a translation of a post that I published in the Italian newspaper “Il Fatto Quotidiano” about two months ago. The idea was to provide a concise statement on the climate situation (no more than 650 words allowed).  I tried to emphasize the risks involved with the “climate tipping points” and criticize … Continue reading “Climate Change: A Concise Assessment of What we are Risking.”

Iran, Oil, and War: The End of the Carter Doctrine?

The “Oil Corridor,” where the largest oil resources in the world are located. It was generated by events that took place during the Jurassic period. Those events can’t be affected by politics, but they can affect politics.For a while, the situation with the USA-Iran standoff looked like a scene in an old Western movie:  two … Continue reading “Iran, Oil, and War: The End of the Carter Doctrine?”

The Profession of Arms: Of Vile Leaders and Courageous Ones

Above, you can see an amazing clip from the 2001 movie by Ermanno Olmi “The Profession of Arms”. It is the story of the march on Rome of the German Landsknechts led by Georg von Frundsberg in 1526. They were faced by an army commanded by Giovanni de’ Medici, known as Giovanni Dalle Bande Nere … Continue reading “The Profession of Arms: Of Vile Leaders and Courageous Ones”

Leader Assassination in the Age of Drones: A Suggestion for an Invulnerable President

Captain Birds Eye and his fish sticks. He is a reassuring, fatherly, positive presence. Why don’t we elect him as president? The advantage is that he can’t be assassinated since he doesn’t exist. Long ago, leaders used to fight on the frontline with their troops. Everything changed with the invention of firearms, when the leaders discovered … Continue reading “Leader Assassination in the Age of Drones: A Suggestion for an Invulnerable President”

The Collapse of the American Empire. What Future for Humankind?

These notes are not supposed to disparage nor to exalt an entity that has a history that goes back to at least a couple of millennia ago. Like all Empires, past and present, the Modern World Empire went through its parable of growth and glory and it is now starting its decline. There is not … Continue reading “The Collapse of the American Empire. What Future for Humankind?”

The Christmas Torches of Abbadia: Sustainable Resource Management According to an Ancient Traditions

This clip is my first attempt at a video on the subject of this blog, resource management. The results are, well, not so great: it is dark and the audio is not very good. I’ll see to do better next time, but it seems to me that the clip is at least understandable and it … Continue reading “The Christmas Torches of Abbadia: Sustainable Resource Management According to an Ancient Traditions”

Polyphonic Music and the Angst of the West: A Christmas Post

Sicut Cervus, by Pierluigi da Palestrina, published in 1604. It sings Psalm 42 of the Vulgata Bible. Maybe this old motet can be seen as a Christmas gift from the Western culture to the rest of humankind (reposted from “Chimeras”)With the waning of the Middle Ages, Europe was coming out of a terrible period. The … Continue reading “Polyphonic Music and the Angst of the West: A Christmas Post”

Why we are Running Toward the Cliff at Full Speed: One of the Reasons is that People Never Change their Mind.

Below, you’ll find a report on a televised debate on climate change of a few days ago, in Italy, in which I participated. Probably, you won’t be familiar with some of the names and the events mentioned, yet, I thought you might found this story interesting enough to be reported in English. After all, there … Continue reading “Why we are Running Toward the Cliff at Full Speed: One of the Reasons is that People Never Change their Mind.”

Why Collapse is not always a bad thing: the new book by Ugo Bardi

If you wish to receive a review copy or want to interview the author, please contact: Elizabeth Hawkins | Springer Nature | Communications tel +49 6221 487 8130 | elizabeth.hawkins@springer.com Press Release Why collapse is not always a bad thingNew book provides an analysis of the process of failure and collapse, and outlines principles that help … Continue reading “Why Collapse is not always a bad thing: the new book by Ugo Bardi”

On Greta Thunberg: A Letter to my Non-Western Friends

Dear non-Western friends,first of all, let me tell you that I understand your perplexity about Greta Thunberg. I understand how you see this latest stunt of the Western Media of naming her “Person of the Year.” From your viewpoint, it looks just like another trick of the West, one among many. And I understand that … Continue reading “On Greta Thunberg: A Letter to my Non-Western Friends”

The Effect of the Sanctions: Is Iran Cracking Down Under the Strain?

I have to confess that the title of this post is a little of a clickbait. In reality, I will tell you more about Italy than about Iran. But, perhaps, from the story of how Italy reacted to the international economic sanctions imposed on the country in 1935, we can learn something about what could … Continue reading “The Effect of the Sanctions: Is Iran Cracking Down Under the Strain?”

RAMSES: The Electric Tractor is Alive and Well in Tehran

The RAMSES vehicle under development in Italy in 2011. In the photo, from the left, the developers: Toufic El Asmar, Paolo Pasquini, and Ugo Bardi.Maybe you read my descriptions of the “RAMSES” electric tractor that I helped to develop some years ago with funding from the European Commission. It was an interesting project and the … Continue reading “RAMSES: The Electric Tractor is Alive and Well in Tehran”

What’s wrong with the oil industry? Too many claims of abundance start sounding suspicious

Above: the Financial Times of Nov 29th, 2019. Has the US really become energy independent?Peak oil theorists have always been the favorite punching ball of mainstream oil pundits but, recently, the attacks against the peak oil idea have started becoming so loud and widespread that I am starting to think that there has to be … Continue reading “What’s wrong with the oil industry? Too many claims of abundance start sounding suspicious”

Like Stalingrad: Italy’s Concrete Infrastructure is Melting in the Rain

The region of Liguria, within the red circle, is a narrow strip of land stuck between the Appennini Mountains and the Tyrrhenian Sea. It is also a critical element of the transportation system that connects France and the Po valley to the rest of Italy. As you may imagine, this heavily urbanized region is subjected … Continue reading “Like Stalingrad: Italy’s Concrete Infrastructure is Melting in the Rain”

Denigrating “The Limits to Growth” is Still a Popular Pastime. But can we Learn Something From it?

Many people seem to be surprised when I tell them that I follow the abominable science denial blog “Watts Up With That” kept by Alan Watts. Yes, it is abominable, sometimes, but it has one feature that makes it stand a couple of notches above the other science denial blogs: it is almost never boring, … Continue reading “Denigrating “The Limits to Growth” is Still a Popular Pastime. But can we Learn Something From it?”

Climategate, 10 Years Later: What Can we Learn About it from Memetics?

Ten years ago, on November 20th, 2009, the “Climategate” story broke into the news, worldwide. At the beginning, it seemed to be just part of the heated debate on climate. Then, its true character appeared more clearly: it was a major demonstration of the power of the media to control the memesphere. Above, an image … Continue reading “Climategate, 10 Years Later: What Can we Learn About it from Memetics?”

Before The Collapse: The New Book by Ugo Bardi

My new book on collapse is out, published by Springer. You can find it at the Springer site at this link (priced in Euro) and at this link (priced in dollars). You can find it also on most Web sites that sell books. Collapse is a popular subject nowadays, so I thought I could add … Continue reading “Before The Collapse: The New Book by Ugo Bardi”

What Future for Africa? A Report from the Meeting of the Club of Rome in Cape Town

Manphela Ramphele (*) and Sandrine Dixon-Decleve, the co-presidents of the Club of Rome, at the start of the meeting of the Club in Cape Town on 5 November 2019 (**). These are somewhat rambling and incomplete notes written immediately after the end of the meeting. Africa? What is Africa, exactly? A continent? A nation? A … Continue reading “What Future for Africa? A Report from the Meeting of the Club of Rome in Cape Town”

“The Limits to Growth” continues to make waves

The Club of Rome is holding its annual meeting in Cape Town, South Africa. In the image, you see the co-president, Sandrine Dixon-Decleve, speakingNow heading toward its 50th anniversary, “The Limits to Growth,” the 1972 study sponsored by the Club of Rome, continues to generate interest. Past is the time of the “Limits-Bashing” fashion, when … Continue reading ““The Limits to Growth” continues to make waves”

The West Fades. The Center Quietly Returns: The New Silk Road

An image from the workshop on desalination and mineral extraction from seawater organized by Sharif University in Teheran this week. In the photo, you can see people from Oman (3), Iran (3), South Africa (1), India (1), and Bangladesh (1). It was not only a multi-ethnical group but also a Eurasia-centered one. It gave me … Continue reading “The West Fades. The Center Quietly Returns: The New Silk Road”

Report from Tehran: What is the Effect of the Sanctions?

My wife, Grazia, in a supermarket in Tehran, today. No effect of the economic sanctions is visible. The shelves are full of goods from everywhere. You can find even Coca Cola cansFor this Monday post on Cassandra’s Legacy, I can offer you just a very brief report from Tehran, Iran, where I am for a … Continue reading “Report from Tehran: What is the Effect of the Sanctions?”

Bimillenary of the death of Germanicus: The Defeat of the Roman Deep State

2,000 years ago, on Oct 10, 19 CE, Germanicus Julius Caesar died in Antioch, Asia Minor, perhaps poisoned by his uncle, Tiberius, then the ruling emperor. If we see Hillary Clinton in the role of Germanicus and Donald Trump in the role of Tiberius, you have an equivalent ongoing conflict. Most likely, the concept of … Continue reading “Bimillenary of the death of Germanicus: The Defeat of the Roman Deep State”