I was very disappointed in James Kirkpatrick’s “Technology as Servant” article about fracking in the Winter 2022 issue of Wise Traditions. He explains the history and process of fracking very well, and lauds the economic benefits to U.S. energy corporations and also to energy consumers. However, he barely mentions the environmental and health damage caused by this process, glossing over problems like the contamination of ground water that results in people—humans living in fracked areas—being able to light on fire the water coming out of their kitchen faucets. It’s as if the human cost of this quite destructive industrial process is negligible compared to the great economic effect of the U.S. becoming an energy exporter rather than an importer.
He doesn’t mention the negative health effects of venting and flaring gas at wellheads, which spew chemical pollution into the air all around and 24/7, nor the problems with the light and noise pollution from those flares. Similarly, he mentions the increased traffic that these industrial processes bring into rural areas without acknowledging the increased air, water and soil contamination that accompany the traffic and congestion.
In the section titled “Water Challenges,” Mr. Kirkpatrick grants that the use of massive quantities of mostly fresh water “in the drilling process leads to the second main engineering-environmental challenge with the hydraulic fracturing process.” (It wasn’t clear to me what the first challenge was.) He goes on to describe a number of ways in which this water is “managed” after the fracking process, including storage in open pits, which pollutes the air and ground water; injecting the used water into disposal wells, which can lead to minor earthquakes and pollution of ground water; and what he calls a “closed recycle loop.” This process removes the contaminants from the water (and puts them where? he doesn’t say), so that the same water can be used again for fracking. He reports that at present only 40 to 50 percent of fracking water is processed this way.
Mr. Kirkpatrick refers to the pollution problems from fracking as being “in small numbers relative to the number of wells drilled.” And the number of wells is huge, as this process needs many small, short-lived wells, in contrast to the older types of wells that could extract hydrocarbons for much longer. He calls it a “trade-off” of water for gas and oil, and deplores fracking critics for missing “the widespread benefits. . . from the doubling of domestic hydrocarbon production.”
You don’t have to be a climate alarmist or a carbon-phobe to recognize that trading water (absolutely essential for human and all life) for hydrocarbon fuels (extremely important for modern industrial society, but by no means essential for life) is not a minor thing. The fact that presidents are likely to embrace such a trade-off “without blinking” is not a very comforting thought for all us non-presidents. We are faced with the unfortunate reality that any source of energy sufficient to power the necessities of life for the billions of people now living on earth comes with major environmental and health costs, especially for those who live near or work in the extractive industries that supply the raw materials. That goes for the so-called renewable energy sources as well as the “legacy” sources: coal, oil, gas, nuclear and even the oldest of all, burning wood or other biomass.
Fracking technology is a “servant” of the hydrocarbon industry, and in the sense that we all use the products of that industry, one could call it a “servant” to us consumers, too. But we’re still waiting for the technology that can serve to make the extractive processes necessary for this and all energy products more compatible with the health of humans and all of the earth’s inhabitants and biomes.
I direct readers’ attention to www. dr-rath-foundation.org/2022/09/fracking-the-scientific-evidence-of-adverse-health-effects-that-governments-arent-telling-you-about/.
A big thank you for the 2022 Winter WAPF journal. It was full of very important timely information. It’s so sad to hear people blaming our children for problems with their sexuality, when it’s not their fault. Most of us are made sick and confused before we can walk and it’s not us, it’s living in this toxic, greed-based culture!
One department I disagree with is about the benefits of fracking for oil, as well as views on other technologies written about by James Kirkpatrick. There’s nothing good about oil or other fossil fuels and what’s remaining in the ground should stay in the ground. Our
planet is overheating, destroying our ecology, and fossil fuel is the problem. True, I appreciate James’s knowledge but I wish he had a different view about the negative effect of most technology that hurts all of us, especially the poor!
MY OWN FRACKED NATURAL GAS WELL
I was glad to see a sensible article on fracking in the pages of Wise Traditions.
I am a farmer in western Pennsylvania and have a fracked gas well on my land. This well brings me five hundred dollars per day in revenue and has saved my farm. I no longer have any pressure to sell to developers and I have been able to put in needed infrastructure such as fences and a new barn. For the first time, I am enjoying prosperity.
Sure, there were a bunch of trucks and equipment involved when the well went in but now all is calm. The well is inconspicuous, surrounded by trees and green fields. I can drink our well water and there are no flames coming out of our taps. Our air is clean here and plants are thriving. I know there were environmental problems in the early days of fracking, but fortunately these had all been solved by the time my well went in.
There are almost thirteen thousand fracked wells (and almost one hundred thousand conventional wells) in western Pennsylvania. They are not causing poverty but adding greatly to the prosperity of the state and creating many good jobs.
It’s a shame that knee-jerk reactions to fracking have led to laws against it in New York and Maryland. Landowners there are prohibited from benefiting from the natural gas under their land, and many will eventually see their farms turned into subdivisions—or maybe polluted with wind or solar farms.
People who say we should not be drilling for and using oil and natural gas have not thought things through. It’s obvious that wind and solar can only supply a fraction of our energy needs; coal is dirty; and we could keep ourselves warm and clean with wood (which, like coal, is highly polluting) for only a few years until all our trees were cut down.
The fact is that the use of oil and gas has made life comfortable and clean for billions of people, and continued drilling will make that possible for many more. Today we live better than royalty did in the past because we have “fossil” fuel to heat and light our houses, wash our clothes, run our refrigerators, cook our food, provide clean transportation (yes, clean, with modern reformulated gasoline, especially compared to transportation by horse and mule), and manufacture an infinite variety of goods including telephones and computers. “Fossil” fuel has allowed us to build roads, buildings and infrastructure without resorting to forced labor and freed all of us from the drudgery of hard physical labor.
As for the idea that use of oil and gas is contributing to climate change, the evidence shows that the climate of the Earth goes through cycles of warm and cool that have nothing to do with our energy use.
I put “fossil” in quotation marks geologists are realizing that oil and gas are constantly being renewed in the depths of the earth. Just look up “abiotic” oil on your computer.
NOT A MACHINE!
I just received the Spring 2023 Wise Traditions and read both Tom Cowan’s and Andrew Kaufman’s articles. They are of great interest to me and well written. Several things struck me and I decided to comment.
First, Dr. Kaufman states that “the body is a self-healing machine.” I suggest this describes the major limit facing science (and the culture) today, particularly researchers in any aspect of health. The body is not a machine. We realize now that living systems are self-organizing on all levels, including the healing process; but developing the language and ideas to express nonlinear concepts and observations, and freeing ourselves from the machine model of reality takes time. A machine can be fixed by removing and reinstalling parts, a sort of “plug and play” model. Living systems do not behave this way. Self-organization is very different.
A new, very different view of anatomy is currently emerging. Old ideas of bones, muscles and organs being separate are now seen as too limited. Robert Schleip (researcher and practitioner at the University of Munich at Ulm) and Tomas Myers (author and movement therapist) are among the workers who now view human anatomy as a continuous structural system from the interior of cell nuclei outward to the skin, including organs and bones, held and supported by the architecture of fascia—the old term is “connective tissue.”
Fascia is structured in a nonlinear fashion called “biotensegrity.” Classical anatomy separates muscles, nerves, blood vessels, organs and the like. The new view indicates these structures exist in a tensegral system, never separate, and form in response to local conditions. They are supported and interpenetrated by a 3-D living network of non-cellular elements of fascia. I believe it would be valuable to visit the work of both authors. One consequence is that genes are not “plug and play,” nor is any other part of this very complex, nonlinear system. A major structural factor is the “fourth phase” of water, as Dr. Cowan mentions.
This new view of anatomy might facilitate the discussion, and perhaps further the understanding of how nonlinear living systems carry out life processes. Appropriate research methods like biochemistry and live microscopy are profoundly altering the old view, as is the work with nutrition, which might “cross-pollinate” with Weston A. Price’s view.
Another statement that caught my attention was the “necessity of cause and effect.” I suggest the authors consider the Buddhist concept of “causes and conditions” as different from “cause and effect,” which suggests a direct linear association and can be limiting.
A final point struck me in Dr. Kaufman’s discussion of human extrasensory abilities. The culturally defined acceptance of human abilities is a consequence of the machine model, which also underlies science. But we have far more capabilities. I knew two colleagues who were very gifted with remote viewing. But they did so to stay in touch with their families while living or studying far away from home, and were very quiet about their skill. These abilities are probably quite common, but scientifically unaccepted, and suppressed by cultural reliance on a machine model of reality.
The area of fascia research is incredibly exciting, and I believe opens a long closed door to understanding the awesome capacities we have as living beings.
Of course, there is lots more about this to be found on the Internet. I was delighted to read the two articles, grateful to see this information publicly available. The idea that much of our cell biology information is based on lab artifact is quite interesting. And of course, Weston A. Price has changed my life. My gratitude to you for continuing the work.
The article by Merinda Teller in the Spring 2023 journal (“Medical Tests: Whose Interests Do They Really Serve?”). It contained helpful insights into TB testing that I did not know before, so thank you! I would add, however, that the section on overutilization of X-rays may be less serious than previously thought. Good research over the last several years has been chipping away at the antiquated, linear no-threshold model of radiation exposure. This theory suggested that all radiation absorbed by the body was damaging and cumulative over time, inevitably leading to cancer and disease over a lifetime. Paul Oakley, Canadian clinician and researcher, has published several articles challenging this model in the highly rated journal Dose Response (see citations at the end of this letter). The Harvard paper referenced by Ms. Teller has no citations and is a carry-over from the decades-long radiation phobia that has easily been propagated with the visual and natural fear of nuclear explosions.
It may be more helpful to realize that, according to one researcher, in the absence of radiation we would all be dead. Radiation acts as a challenge to the body, like weight lifting. None is bad, some is great and excessive amounts can be a problem (emphasis on “excessive”).
I am a chiropractor by training and use X-rays regularly to improve patient outcomes. I had a couple of years without my own X-ray machine, and I wish I could have all of those patients back, so I could do a better job. My care is more accurate and safer when I see exactly what I am treating. Not only are some tests low-risk, but the benefits far outweigh the risks, if there are any. My advice would be not to avoid all tests for the sake of avoiding all tests, and definitely not avoid tests out of fear. Learn the risks versus the rewards, and simply make an educated decision.
For further information see the following articles by Oakley and colleagues in Dose Response: “Death of the ALARA radiation protection principle as used in the medical sector (2020 Apr- Jun;18(2):1559325820921641); “X-ray imaging is essential for contemporary chiropractic and manual therapy spinal rehabilitation: radiography increases benefits and reduces risks (2018 Jun 19;16(2):1559325818781437); and “The scoliosis quandary: are radiation exposures from repeated X-rays harmful?” (2019 Jun 11;17(2):1559325819852810).
TWINS THE WAPF WAY
Just wanted to report having had a successful home birth to twin boys this past October, born at thirty-eight weeks (full term for twins). These are babies number four and five for my husband and myself. All but my first son were Wise Traditions babies as my “conversion” happened between babies one and two. These pregnancies were relatively easy and all were carried to term—no surprise for many of you!
Labor was fast and “easy,” particularly with the twins at only two hours long. I attribute my ability to carry these babies to term one hundred percent to my diet as I have been following your guidelines for the past eleven years.
My family and husband are doing the same, of course. My midwives were extremely pleased with my health and endurance during the pregnancies as well as the health of the babies during and after gestation.
WAPF speaks the truth and I am forever grateful for the guidance.
Senator Pan of the Sacramento Pharmaceutical District has retired and sailed off into the Pifzer sunset after taking away the religious rights of parents. But that’s okay, because everyone is fully vaccinated.
As I write, California has wildfires burning out of control again, but that’s okay as everyone is fully vaccinated. Several California cities are virtually unlivable because of a severe crime problem that no one in government seems capable of stopping. But that’s okay because everyone is fully vaccinated. Tonight, California has several municipalities that may run out of water but that’s okay because everyone is fully vaccinated.
One of the most beautiful places on the planet, packed with wonderful, talented, creative and industrious people, is now often described as a failed state. But that’s okay because everyone is fully vaccinated.
I guess this is what happens when you run government for the interest of the pharmaceutical industry instead of in the interests of the people.
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