If we do not permit the earth to produce beauty and joy, it will in the end not produce food, either. Joseph Wood Krutch

Friday, January 4, 2008

Products Made from Oil

Oil at $100.00 per barrel? Why should I care? Well..here's a few reasons and this is just a very small list of the products made from oil.  Many may surprise you.

Ink, Dishwashing liquids, Paint brushes, Telephones, Toys, Unbreakable dishes, Insecticides, Antiseptics, Dolls, Car sound insulation, Fishing lures, Deodorant,,Tires, Motorcycle helmets, Linoleum, Sweaters, Tents, Refrigerator linings, Paint rollers, Floor wax, Shoes, Electrician's tape, plastic wood, Model cars, Glue, Roller-skate wheels, Trash bags, Soap dishes, Skis, Permanent press clothes, Hand lotion, Clothesline, Dyes, Soft contact lenses, Shampoo, Panty hose, Cameras, Food preservatives, Fishing rods, Oil filters, Combs, Transparent tape, Anesthetics, Upholstery, Dice, Disposable diapers, TV cabinets, Cassettes, Mops, Sports car bodies, Salad bowls, House paint,  Purses, Electric blankets, Awnings, Ammonia, Dresses,Car battery cases, Safety glass, Hair curlers, Pajamas, Synthetic rubber, VCR tapes, Eyeglasses, Pillows, Vitamin capsules, Movie film, Ice chests, Candles, Rubbing alcohol, Loudspeakers, Ice buckets, Boats, Ice cube trays, Credit cards, Fertilizers, Crayons, Insect repellent, Water pipes, Toilet seats, Caulking, Roofing shingles, Fishing boots, Life jackets, Balloons, Shower curtains, Garden hose, Golf balls, Curtains, Plywood adhesive, Umbrellas, Detergents,  Milk jugs, Beach umbrellas, Rubber cement, Sun glasses, Putty, Faucet washers, Cold cream, Bandages, Tool racks, Antihistamines, Hair coloring, Nail polish, Slacks, Drinking cups, Guitar strings, False teeth, Yarn, Petroleum jelly, Toothpaste, Golf bags, Roofing, Tennis rackets, Toothbrushes, Perfume, Luggage, Wire, insulation, Folding doors, Shoe polish, Fan belts, Ballpoint pens, Shower doors, Cortisone, Carpeting, Artificial turf, Heart valves, LP records, Lipstick, Artificial limbs Hearing aids, Vaporizers, Aspirin, Shaving cream, Wading pools, Parachutes

OK, so now it's time to have a little fun. Print this list then mark off everything you have in your house, or on your person, that is petroleum based.  How many were you not able to cross off?  For me, it was very few.  Still think you are conserving oil by just driving less? 

Wednesday, January 2, 2008

FRONTLINE/World . Uganda - A Little Goes A Long Way . Video | PBS

Here in the U.S. we are very well fed people who live in bloated houses, drive immense gas-hog  vehicles (usually two or three), worry over our investments, pine for that latest this and that and ache when "the good life" is just out of our reach. We have lots of spare time and complain when the cable goes down or the toaster doesn't work quite right.  Meanwhile the rest of the world would be happy with just a little more food, some warmer clothes, a real house and perhaps a blanket to stay warm at night. 

A fairly new website called KIVA specializes in micro-loans to individuals in poorer countries and helps them start or build a micro business so they can afford what we in the U.S. take for granted. These micro businesses usually revolve around food, clothing, shelter, firewood, recycling, and such and are formed by people that do not live in a buy it-trash it society like the U.S. They treasure every little thing life brings them and are happy with it. Despite their poverty a smile still comes quick as they ask only for a tiny bit of help so they can lead a decent life. 

A twenty-five dollar loan to a micro business may sound like a small amount but in another country it is the same as a thousand to you and I. It can mean the difference between eating or not or having clothes or a blanket.  On KIVA an individual, along with thousands of other like-minded individuals, makes small twenty-five dollar, or larger, loans to help start or build a micro-business. Unlike a charity this is money you lend and is not permanently given away.  Eventually, in a year or two, you will see all of your money back.  You can withdraw it of course but the best course of action is to put it right back into another business.  There is no  interest paid but the reward of seeing a positive result from your money is much greater than a dollar could ever provide. 

If you want to lean more about KIVA simply follow this link to a PBS documentary.  It is about twenty minutes long.

FRONTLINE/World . Uganda - A Little Goes A Long Way . Video | PBS