Say “no” to the TransCanada XL Pipeline

Those of you who have been following my blog for some time know that I am against the TransCanada XL Pipeline that is scheduled to open soon. Many of us in Texas fought to keep the pipeline from coming through, but alas, the pipes are already in, just waiting for the green light from Washington to open them up. A decision on the rest of the pipeline is expected soon, and I don’t know if it is too late to stop it – just like it was too late to stop the pipe being laid here – but I hate the fact that Big Oil has the power to make this happen and is so indifferent to the danger the pipeline poses.

In Texas, where the pipeline would end, toxic pollution in the air and water is already dangerous. But introducing tar sands oil to an area already saturated with oil refineries and chemical plants would make a bad situation much, much worse.

Tar sands oil and Keystone XL would increase emissions of benzene, heavy metals, and other carcinogens into the air that residents near the pipeline breathe every day. Not to mention what will happen to the groundwater when there is a leak and all those toxins are released.

Something else I did not know is that the tar-sands mining in Canada also threatens habitats for wildlife, especially wolves in the Boreal Forest. In some areas where mining is already happening, wolves are being killed by people riding in helicopters and hunting the wolves down.

In my heart of hearts, I think President Obama doesn’t want to approve the last leg of the pipeline that is supposed to go through the heartland of the U.S., but he is pressured by the power that Big Oil has in Washington. I pray that Obama can do the right thing.

I have also been a long-time fan of Kristen Lamb, a writer who lives in the Dallas area who shares advice and tips and inspiration for writers on Kristen Lamb’s Blog. Here is just a bit from her latest offering about the rise and fall of social media and the influence of coffee. One of the things I like most about her blog posts is that they are written with a fine edge of humor, and I have such a good time reading them. Here is just a sampling from her latest offering:

Many of you are old enough to remember the boom (then bust) of the 1990s. The Internet was growing in popularity. More people were owning PCs and commerce was shifting on-line. The Old Guard yelled “WITCHCRAFT!”, threw holy water and shorted out their keyboards. The New Guard dived in with the enthusiasm of a kid at Chuck E. Cheese hopped up on sugar.

Creativity abounded. What products or services could be offered on-line? How could we improve the on-line experience? How could we make purchasing faster, safer, more appealing?

Early Adopters jumped all over this because that’s what Early Adopters do. Hey, someone had to be the first to eat an oyster, right?

How Coffee Transformed the Publishing Paradigm

Coffee not only fueled the Industrial Revolution, but apparently staying up all night unable to sleep led to the invention of the “computer,” “the Internet,” and later “iTunes.” The shift from “going to a physical store” commerce to more “e-commerce” set the stage for a number of unanticipated revolutions in the arts. If we think about it, when did the mega-bookstore enjoy its Golden Years?

Hint: Right about the time of the movie You’ve Got Mail, clearly marking the brief historical epoch when we actually enjoyed getting e-mails.

I think I’ll grab a cup of coffee and go check my mail. Don’t forget to grab a copy of Doubletake while it is still free. I am so thrilled that one reader has already taken the time to do a short review. She called the story “Spellbinding.” This is the last day for the free offering to celebrate the book’s release, so take advantage while you can.

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