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Pluck the fruits of pleasure.  Smoke  a pipe; watch ballet or opera; lay with a lover.  Done all this, this week. (more…)

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We sat in the lounge of a cold, distant, small town in northern Sweden, drinking local beer and trying to discern the outcome of the USA elections.  We included two Canadian mining engineers, a Dutchman who is a geologist who has lived most of his life on a farm where Sweden abuts Norway, a local from the town, and me.  By any international measure we are conservative: white, Anglo-Saxon males in mining.  (more…)

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The kids and grandkids have left to return to California; the bikes are packed away; the towels for swimming washed;  the plastic cups and dishes back on basement shelves; and a near-adult feel returns to the house.  (more…)

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United States miners all should be paying close attention to a bill passed this week by Congress. I refer to Bill HR 4402. It is now up to the Senate and President to decide its fate. A Democrat-controlled Senate may sit on it and do nothing—that is unacceptable. The White House has stated that is opposes the bill; but has not threatened a veto. How could it? (more…)

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Background:  In response to requests, the U.S. EPA has undertaken to review the Pebble Mine.  They are apparently acting  in terms of the Clean Water Act, although many dispute their authority to do so.   The review is taking place before any formal submittals have been made by Anglo America, and many claim that Anglo should at least be granted due process. (more…)

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With Mitt Romney well on his way to being the next president, I thought it time to examine their attitudes to mining.  OK, I know there are a few more pesky elections and attacks on Romney’s for his capitalistic sins (firing excess workers at unprofitable companies) to get through, but still the news snippets are fun.  Here are a few.  (more…)

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The “newspaper” handed out free as you approach the SeaBus (Ferry) screams in loud headline “America’s New Era Starts Today.”  Like most, we are pleased that a new era may be on us and wish the new president success.  Some even have positive advice for the new president.  But Tuesday is my scheduled day to blog about jobs in mining, so let us focus on the topic of mining jobs in the United States.  And hope that a similar blog piece a year hence is easier to write because the news is better.

At CareerMinetoday there are 16 “Hot Featured Jobs.”  Only one is in the US.  An Extraction Manager is sought for a mine in Sparks, Nevada.  Sounds like an intriguing job, for the duties include:

 “Lead/participate in the research and development of processing technologies for the recovery of hydrocarbons from unusual resources (such as non-Athabasca oil sands, oil-containing diatomaceous earth material and other mineable hydrocarbon resources.)”

There is along list, more than I care to count, of “Hot Executive & Professional” jobs.  Not one of them is in the United States.  Same for the “Hot Managerial, Technical & Trade” jobs. 

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On this election day, the campaigning is not yet over.  My e-mail box is full of references to an old statement by Obama that he would bankrupt new coal-fired power plants with a carbon tax.  I have watched the video clip and indeed he says that.  It is not out of context.  He also says we do not know how to safely store nuclear waste. 

What a shame that a young man should be so ignorant of the facts of the world.  But this is not an isolated instance of pre-beliefs getting in the way of accepting the truth.  Over the weekend I read Six Impossible Things Before Breakfast–the Evolutionary Origins of Belief.   Written by an atheist father who son joins the London Fundamentalist Church, the book seeks to explain why we believe things that are obviously false. 

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I am not undecided.  I know who I believe should be president.  Because my reasons for selecting one candidate over the other are not based on factors related to the mining industry, I do not endorse one or the other.  Although I have a biased opinion on Palin. 

I have written before in this blog that I believe that mining will not be significantly affected by whether McCain or Obama is the next president.  That comment brought me e-mails from people saying that Obama would promote the cause of mining union workers and that would be bad for mining—or good for mining depending on your attitude to unions.  But I suspect unions are pretty much able to take care of themselves—and they should take care of  themselves and their members—so they do not depend too much on the success or failure of either candidate.

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McCain versus Obama II was a decisive victory for Obama.  He looked and acted presidential.  He was intelligent, articulate, and thoughful.  Much as I suspect young men, and admire men of my own generation, I saw too much in McCain of my own age: a reliance on the past, instinct, repitition, and disrespect for the young.  It is all very well that McCain has served his county, now we need a leader not a server. 

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