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Evidence of past underground water in the Martian equatorial regions?

Mosaic of strange feature
Click here, here, here, and here for full images.

Today’s cool image, to the right, takes us to the equatorial regions of Mars, a region that today appears quite arid and dry based on all the orbital and rover/lander data so far gathered. The photo and its complex geology however provides us a hint that once liquid water did exist here. At least, that is the hypothesis that scientists presently favor, though making it fit this complex geology is not simple or straightforward.

The mosaic to the right is made from four context camera images taken by Mars Reconnaissance Orbiter (MRO). It shows a very complicated series of depressions — one of which vaguely resembles a crater — that appear to have been washed out by some past erosion process, though that process could not have been that simple because of the fissures and cracks that dominate the floor of the circular feature.

I contacted Chris Okubo of the U.S. Geological Survey, who had requested a high resolution image from MRO of a small part of this mosaic, as indicated by the white box, to ask him what we are looking at. His answer was appropriately noncommittal:

There hasn’t been a lot of work done on these, but similar landforms have been previously interpreted as spring mounds that developed within the crater filling sediments.

He then directed me to this 2014 paper [pdf], which analyzed similar features in the same general region of Mars, and put forth some preliminary theories as to the processes that created this geology.

Overview map

Close-up of crater floor

The map to the right gives the geographic context. The white cross marks the location of the mosaic above. The second image, rotated, cropped, and reduced to post here, was taken on April 30, 2020 by MRO’s high resolution camera and is the photo requested by Okubo.

The 2016 paper put forth the following:

We propose that these features are genetically related to groundwater upwelling that ascended from deep fractures and faults.

… Where the groundwater reached the surface, arguably in the southern sectors of craters, the sediments package is thicker and the [layers] are characterized by abundant prominent morphologies such as mounds, furrows ridge-and-trough structures. Furrows and ridge-and-trough structures developed on flat topography are apparently devoid of gravity flow structures. … The groundwater, pumped by the regional hydraulic head, flowing through the fractures induced by the impact, reached the surface and gave rise to the mound clusters. Then the water probably filled the flat bottom of the crater and generated furrows and ridge-and-trough structures during the water table standstill.

The location of this image, as indicated by the map, is at the eastern end of Valles Marineris, in the region where theorized catastrophic floods resurged out into the northern lowland plain of Chryse Planitia. When those floods took place, this location likely had an ample liquid water table, with that water quite energized from the floods. This, according to the above hypothesis, would have provided the force for the upwelling from below that produced the small mounds seen in the close-up, from which water and sediments were pushed up. When that flood energy dissipated and these depressions were then filled with the slowly disappearing standing water, it acted to widen the cracks and fissures.

This is only a theory, with many assumptions and gaps in knowledge, the biggest assumption of all being the belief that Mars’ atmosphere was once warm and thick enough to have allowed liquid water on its surface. Right now no model convincingly makes that possible, even though the geology here and in many other places on Mars strongly suggests it must have been the case.

Above all, the geology in these photos argues that Mars once had both subsurface and surface liquid water at its equator. Whether that water still exists as deep underground ice, remains unknown.

Pioneer cover

From the press release: From the moment he is handed a possibility of making the first alien contact, Saunders Maxwell decides he will do it, even if doing so takes him through hell and back.

 
Unfortunately, that is exactly where that journey takes him.

 
The vision that Zimmerman paints of vibrant human colonies on the Moon, Mars, the asteroids, and beyond, indomitably fighting the harsh lifeless environment of space to build new societies, captures perfectly the emerging space race we see today.

 
He also captures in Pioneer the heart of the human spirit, willing to push forward no matter the odds, no matter the cost. It is that spirit that will make the exploration of the heavens possible, forever, into the never-ending future.

 
Available everywhere for $3.99 (before discount) at amazon, Barnes & Noble, all ebook vendors, or direct from the ebook publisher, ebookit. And if you buy it from ebookit you don't support the big tech companies and I get a bigger cut much sooner.

24 comments

  • Milt

    As Robert Observes:

    “[The Great Chryse Planitia Flood] is only a theory, with many assumptions and gaps in
    knowledge, the biggest assumption of all being the belief that Mars’ atmosphere was once
    warm and thick enough to have allowed liquid water on its surface. Right now no model
    convincingly makes that possible, even though the geology here and in many other
    places on Mars strongly suggests it must have been the case.”

    It seems to me that this kind of conundrum — and the ability to entertain two contradictory ideas in one’s head at the same time — is what drives “real” science forward as opposed to the universal tendency to allow narratives about different data sets to harden into official orthodoxy. Thus the “wet Mars” camp versus the “dry Mars” camp, both insisting that they — and only they — must be right.

    Somewhere in the long history of Mars, something pretty spectacular happened as indicated by these images, even if researchers haven’t figured it all out yet. Wouldn’t it be nice if a similar kind of objective open-mindedness obtained in the realm of politics…

    Ah, but then we wouldn’t have our woke social justice jihadists to enjoy, would we? (Would anyone join me this morning in lifting a coffee cup in salute to Edmund Burke?)

  • Lee Stevenson

    @Milt, I agree with every word you wrote, the system is called “science”. Unfortunately, in matters of us humans, “facts” can change, public opinions swing backwards and forwards, values change, governments change.

    In a “perfect world”, no one would go hungry, there would be no war… Some form of communism would be involved under the one world govenment that actually cared about the care of the people, along with massive investment in medical and technological research, along with the arts and the sciences. There would be no massive wealth equality because there would be no need … We would all be content with our needs, hopes and dreams being met, with the guy at Macdonald’s being valued as much as the CEO of Virgin Galactic.

    The problem is people… And I am one, the above sounds bloody awful, even to me!! And even tho it solves all the world’s problems, I’m pretty sure there are not many people alive that would like to live under such a system, and I’m even more sure there is not one person alive that could be trusted to administer such a system. ( I await the singularity eagerly, and welcome our robot overlords, in case they read this! )

    So…. After my bit of “in fun” rambling, my point is, if you want a truly free society, you have to put up with the current bullcrap waged by YOUR left ( mostly.. you started it!), It is their right to do what they are doing, as long as they are breaking no laws. It is your right to do as much as is legal to fight this cancel culture movement. And even as a committed socialist, it should be fought! The tenant of freedom of speech seems to surface remarkably infrequently in the discussion regarding your left, don’t you have something in your constitution regarding free speech?…. You get to carry guns but your not allowed to use an offencive word in a historical context.??? ( And it’s getting pretty similar over here, and we can’t even carry guns!!)
    However, back to my point… In a free, fair and open democracy, anyone should be allowed to opine whit they like, and if it gets traction, well it’s not down to those that disagree to close them down, it’s to use the tools available ( like this blog ) to change people’s minds.

    The pendulum WILL swing back… It always does, and we are not all going to die. Unfortunately,.when and how, is not currently accurately predictable by science.

  • Lee Stevenson

    Sorry to hijack this cool image thread… I’ve had too much time working alone today!!!

    I am always cheered by “proofs” of liquid water on Mars… I don’t want vague hints of microbial mats, I want trilobites!!

    Have a great weekend all!!

  • Edward

    Lee Stevenson wrote: “In a “perfect world”, … We would all be content with our needs, hopes and dreams being met, … The problem is people…

    Well, that certainly sounds like a perfect world, but the problem with that world is different; it is not people. Who wouldn’t want to live in a world where all needs, hopes, and dreams are met? The problem is the contentment. Content people do not progress. Who would have invented air conditioning if everyone were content without it? Who would have invented weather satellites if everyone were content without them? Who would write new books if everyone were content without them? Who would be dreaming of these new things or any different things if they were content without them?

    In a perfect world, there is enough discontent to keep innovating in order to make the world even more perfect.

  • Lee Stevenson

    @Edward, I did say that the arts, and sciences would be fully funded, although I grant you that without friction nothing changes. Twas but a throwaway thought experiment to prove a point I actually disagree with tho… Do you have any comment on the meat rather than the oil it was fried in?

  • Edward

    Lee Stevenson,
    You asked: “Do you have any comment on the meat rather than the oil it was fried in?

    Do you mean the part where you don’t understand that America’s left wing is repeating what has happened elsewhere, including Europe? America’s socialists did not invent cancel culture, it is merely what is visible in the world today. The Soviet Union used cancel culture a century ago, and they were copying techniques that had been used for centuries, if not millennia.

    It is their right to do what they are doing, as long as they are breaking no laws.

    Except as has been pointed out numerous times, often these cancel culture actions violate the supreme law of the land.

    The pendulum WILL swing back… It always does,

    It didn’t in the Soviet Union. Even after that government fell, the modern one is not much better. That is why so many ex-Soviets have moved to freer countries. If the pendulum fails to swing back in the U.S., then who will save the rest of the world from tyranny?

  • Edward

    Why is it that other countries have failed so completely in following the U.S. example. The Statue of Liberty was supposed to shine the light of liberty on the rest of the world for it to follow the U.S. example, but in 150 years, this has not happened.

    Rather than declaring freedom to be the natural human condition, the rest of the world, including and especially the U.N., declared that liberties and natural rights are bestowed upon mankind by their governing bodies. Only in the U.S. are the rights of man inalienable. Yet we see how quickly our fellow men are willing to violate these rights, and how our own government leads the way.

    Abraham Lincoln phrased it well: “… We shall nobly save, or meanly lose, the last best hope of earth.

    Because no other country followed our lead, it is still up to us to save the last best hope of earth. Right now, we are meanly losing it while the world just watches.

  • wayne

    Lee-
    We live in a world of scarcity.

    Elon Musk & Akira The Don
    “If You Don’t Make Stuff, There’s No Stuff”
    June 2020
    https://youtu.be/nA4Ya-yKJ0A
    3:23

    Ref Mars–
    what do these theories have to say as it relates to mars magnetic field and apparent long-standing lack thereof?

  • Lee Stevenson

    @Edward, quote “Why is it that other countries have failed so completely in following the U.S. example.”

    Seriously….. I know you genuinely cannot ever comprehend, but as I have stated many times, you do not have the only functional method of govenence. There are many other nations that are quite happy without the US Constitution, thank you very much.

    The question you ask really answers itself, and if the US system is so great, why do so many of you spend so much time complaining?

    Consider this. I know I’m going to get called a fool, that I’m blind, that I don’t understand freedom, yadi yadi yaaaa… But I’m actually pretty happy with my govenment, and the socialist system I exist, raise my kids, and thrive in. I genuinely would not move to the US for any reason. I believe your country has many serious flaws, (Sweden does also, no land is perfect) that would make me unhappy, and indeed scared.

    You can keep your right to carry guns, you can keep your disdain of social welfare, and you can keep your disregard for your fellow citizens. The US has a lot of things going for it, in many ways it is a beacon, but if you have to ask why the rest of the world isn’t jumping on your ship… You need to look inwards, not outwards.

  • Edward

    Lee Stevenson,
    You wrote: “Seriously….. I know you genuinely cannot ever comprehend, but as I have stated many times, you do not have the only functional method of govenence.

    Seriously? Tyranny is also a functional method of governance, too, or do you think that is a desirable method? Even Nazi Germany was functional. But those are your preferences, because you are currently being treated well. Many Americans let socialism into our country because they were treated well, too, but many of them are starting to be cancelled for realizing their mistake. Too late for them, not yet too late for you.

    Despite other methods of governance working, many governments attempt — but fail — to emulate the U.S. governance, such as the U.N. with its Universal Declaration of Human Rights, which confers rights upon people, but retains the ability to remove those rights at its whim. This is not the U.S, method of governance, which is based upon rights being natural, not conferred by other men. Even the Declaration of Human Rights allows those rights to be rescinded, see Article 29, clause 3. If government is able to withdraw its citizens’ rights, then you get what we have in America today, a cancel culture led by the government. Here, it started with the IRS, the taxing authority, which cancelled groups that opposed the then sitting president.

    I know you genuinely cannot ever comprehend, but the U.S. increasingly is becoming your form of socialism, which is a real reason for us to complain. How do you make a more perfect country if you fail to point out where it needs improvement? Another concept you have failed to comprehend despite my efforts.

    Consider this. I know I’m going to get called a fool, that I’m blind, that I don’t understand freedom, yadi yadi yaaaa… But I’m actually pretty happy with my govenment, and the socialist system I exist, raise my kids, and thrive in.

    This makes my point exactly. You do not have any desire to improve, because you are content with your current situation. This is yet another reason why so much innovation comes from America. If only you guys had a little more discontent and freedom, then you could make your fair share of contributions to the human condition, too. Instead, you prefer the socialism that is a parasite on free market capitalism, the socialism that thinks it is the stepping stone between free market capitalism and communism.

    I believe your country has many serious flaws

    And yet, you believe that our desire to reduce these flaws is a bad thing, thinking that complaining about our deteriorating condition is a sign that our pre-socialist condition was a bad thing. Our country may not be perfect, but our attempts at improvement have made it far superior to yours, as evidenced by the large number of those willing to risk their lives to immigrate here, but not risk their lives to go to your country.

    You can keep your right to carry guns, you can keep your disdain of social welfare, and you can keep your disregard for your fellow citizens.

    On rereading that statement of yours do you now understand where you fail to comprehend what we have been telling you? If not, be embarrassed. Wanting our fellow citizens to carry their own weight is not any kind of disregard at all. It is how they live well rather than poorly. We don’t have disdain for social welfare, we have disdain for its use not as a safety net but as a hammock. You reported that your North Carolina friends complain that we don’t want them to use social welfare as a hammock, but they need to move to where the jobs are, where they won’t need to depend upon social welfare. When I was a child, my family moved house many times in order to keep working. It meant making all the sacrifices that your friends refuse to make, preferring to live off our largess than to live off their own labor.

    You also completely fail to comprehend that the U.S. is not homogenous, even though I have explained this to you on multiple occasions. The gun violence is greatest in the areas where the gun laws are harshest, where only the criminals have guns. Gun violence is practically non-existent where open carry is the law of the land. Most mass shootings occur in gun-free zones. Even in Europe.

    The US has a lot of things going for it, in many ways it is a beacon, but if you have to ask why the rest of the world isn’t jumping on your ship… You need to look inwards, not outwards.

    Looking inwards, I find that the worst places, the places you, Lee, complain most about, are run by the socialists. Looking outward, I find that the rest of the world is content to let government be the keeper of the human rights, and I find a lack of desire to improve their condition, just like you.

    I still do not expect to convince you, because despite the warnings that came to America from socialist countries, those Americans who believed in socialism failed to heed those warnings. You, too, fail to heed the warnings that are coming from people who are now experiencing the fall of America. You are there, noting that fall and commenting to us about our fall, yet you still refuse to heed our warnings. You are just like the Americans who thought that socialism couldn’t come to our country, and no one would put up with it if it tried to come here. There is only one kind of socialism, but there are various speeds at which it takes over a country.

    We, too, thought that it couldn’t happen here, but it has. It can happen to you, too, and it will. By then, however, we will not be available to rescue you a third time.

    It isn’t as though it hasn’t been in Europe for years. Here you can see that socialism’s shut-uppery has been there for quite some time, with examples: http://behindtheblack.com/behind-the-black/essays-and-commentaries/what-ever-you-do-dont-shut-up

    Keep a close eye on what they are teaching in your country’s schools and colleges. If it is anything anti-religious then your country is already on its way to following the U.S. into cancel culture and full socialism. There are other tactics that they could be using to prepare your country to go beyond Fabian socialism, but they took the U.S. by claiming that they are only being “fair,” whatever they mean by that.

    There, as here, it does not take much for the cancel culture to metastasize and become deadly. There are plenty of socialists available who are willing to do the job.

    Good luck to you, and especially to your unfortunate children.

  • Lee Stevenson

    Ok Edward, let’s take your “points” in reverse order… ( It’s easier while scrolling on my phone!)

    Quite”Good luck to you, and especially to your unfortunate children”… As I have mentioned many times before, my kids are 13 and almost 16, and their friends are from many ethnic origins, and they take the pee out of each other without getting triggered, they are “post-woke”.
    Next…I am an atheist, my children are raised with an open mind, my son is atheist to the core, my daughter undecided. I do not impose my views on them, I just encourage them to think for themselves. Whatever their decisions, I will respect them. I believe your constitution has something about “separation of church and state”, so I’m not sure what that has to do with the conversation.
    Next., You are crying about the fall of America, it’s the socialists, and it could happen over here… Dude, it’s been happening over here for over a century, and civilization hasn’t fallen. And to jump ahead a point, Sweden has been a socialist country for many years, and remains a hotbed of both technological innovation, and musical genius. The tech innovation is subsidised by the government by the taxes we pay to the transparent govenment that subsidies these companies until they become a net contributer. I can’t explain the musical excellence, but the tax breaks and support the govenment gives to emerging tech works. Full stop. Sweden has one of the best successful start up tech company history in the world… With a population of 11 or so million… So that blows your argument there right out of the water.right there. Do your research!

    Ok, next… Gun violence. We don’t tend to have it, because we don’t have places with more gun control than others . We just have gun control.

    Next! You talk about the amount of people willing to risk their lives to move to the US… it only because it is closer for them! You should read the WORLD news more…. I can guarantee you more poor souls have died trying to reach Europe than have trying to reach the US!
    ( It might behove you to read a little world news from time to time… Try the BBC or The Guardian…. English based, but relatively impartial..)

    Next! My comments on the good folk of North Carolina and west Virginia was along the lines of they were too proud to take government money… so they lived on the “barter” economy…. It’s hard to move when you are genuinely broke, ( which I’m guessing you have never been in your life )

    Next, and finally…. First, I have a statement, just because I think your system of government is not the best, does not mean I think Naziism or communism are better…

    To imply that because I think the US system leaves a lot to be desired, and because I do, means I am a Nazi is a rubbish argument. I believe that the US has a heart of gold, and believe it or not, I am no Nazi….. I follow your Christian doctrine of love for my fellow man, and caring for my fellow citizens citizens. Let’s just say, in my ancient coin collection I have several pruta from around 46 BC to 60AD… Jesus respected the socialist view that man should look after man.

    I am not religious in the slightest, but I cannot agree more with this biblical doctrine. In your country people live with forever debt for schooling, for medical treatment, it is impossible to even get on the housing ladder because of big business, it is down to every man to look after their own business.

    You seem to think of this as a point to be proud of, the rest of the world hangs its head and wonders why?

    You may never understand why we don’t understand,
    But it.is important that you do understand that you do not live in Eutopia, there are very, very many people who would rather live in Europe than anywhere near the US.. and Edward…. Do you have the slightest touch of hubris in you? The US is not the greatest country in the world… You have been brainwashed to believe this… Not one country has followed your example… After many invasions, insurrections and coos… Doesn’t that speak volumes? Not one single country has followed the US route… Not one in 2 centuries… Perhaps it’s not the whole rest of the world that got it wrong… Just saying… Love and light!

  • Lee Stevenson

    I guess I could boil my previous post down to “your talking bullcrap”, a bit of social welfare is both the moraly correct and fiscally correct thing to do… it shouldn’t need an argument, it shouldn’t need an explanation.. a dollar of your tax could go towards some underprivileged kid making it big… Whose taxes would fund the next one, or two, or 3… By giving nothing into the system, you will get nothing out. Yay USA .. your system is rubbish. You punish the poor, and celebrate the rich…. And yet the guys on here ( mostly Edward) argue that the US has the best system in the spooniverse….. I disagree.

  • Lee Stevenson: What you absolute refuse to recognize is the coercive nature of taxes. Providing social welfare is good, yes, but when it is required by a tax someone else is then deciding where that welfare, paid with YOUR dime, should go.

    YOU should make the decision, not some government worker. This is what everyone here has been trying to explain to you, but you refuse to hear it. It is like talking to a wall.

    Moreover, you somehow think that just because we don’t want someone else making such decisions for us we are thus somehow barbarians who want to “punish the poor.” This is insulting and very shallow-minded thinking. It is also quite false. Americans historically have donated more to charity, per capita, than any other nation. Or at least they use to, when they could keep more of their own earnings. Now, who knows? One needs to eat, and the government skims off about 30% to 60% of those earnings to pay big salaries to bureaucrats in Washington, who are definitely not poor.

  • wayne

    “Jordan Peterson ,Wigan Pier, Marxism and the Working Class”
    https://youtu.be/JfT_in6Vy3A
    17:23

  • Edward

    Lee Stevenson,
    You wrote: “Consider this. I know I’m going to get called a fool, that I’m blind, that I don’t understand freedom,

    It is funny what things you project from yourself onto us. We have said none of these things of you, but you think them of yourself and think that you can project them onto us.

    What I have said is that you have been fooled (as in “fool me once…” It is OK to be fooled, but not over and over again) that there are things that you see from a very different point of view, and that your visit to the U.S. failed to teach you about the freedoms that American’s used to enjoy and that your countries never let you enjoy.

    Everywhere you lived, your healthcare was always socialized, and the cost hidden away by government bureaucracy. We Americans remember a time when government barely interfered with healthcare and the low cost of healthcare in those times. We watched as the costs kept skyrocketing each time the government came to help with the problem that they told us we had. Now it is existentially expensive, and as you have noted it does not cover what it has promised to cover. As you noted, Americans now have to sell their houses — or forget about buying a house — just to afford to buy the (previously) mandated healthcare. By the way, my state still mandates that we buy healthcare, and the “fine” for not buying it is greater than the IRS “fine” had been.

    In the U.S., our socialist governments have declared that they may tell us what to buy, where to go, what to wear, what to say or not say, how or whether to worship, what to do, and what and who to be. There are supposed to be part of our social welfare. Because our governments are getting away with these socialist tyrannies, expect them to come to your country.

    just because I think your system of government is not the best, does not mean I think Naziism or communism are better…

    Both are/were varying levels of socialism, and socialism is what you advocate as being better. Of course, I didn’t call you a NAZI, but you seem eager to be compared to one. Is that more projection on your part?

    I follow your Christian doctrine

    Which, being an atheist, Christian doctrine is something that you know ever so well.

    Jesus respected the socialist view that man should look after man.

    Actually, that is literally the Christian view. So much for your understanding of Christian doctrine. The socialist view is that the government should look after man, and you advocate for that vociferously. Since social welfare is what you like so much about socialism, how do you miss that? So much for your understanding of socialist doctrine.

    it is down to every man to look after their own business.

    So, who do you think knows each man’s business better than that man? Who do you prefer to look after each man’s business? Certainly not some far away bureaucrat who is looking after his own business?

    In your country people live with forever debt for schooling, for medical treatment

    Since both are governed, regulated, and virtually completely supplied by government, you should be able to understand why government is such an impediment to our livelihoods. Socialist policies put us forever in debt. But then, considering that the increasingly socialist government thinks it is good policy to put itself into forever debt (using other people’s money), it is hardly surprising that its policies do the same to its citizens.

    But it.is important that you do understand that you do not live in Eutopia,

    Oh. My. God! Is that why this place is called America rather than Eutopia? But then, that “EU” beginning would explain why you think that Europe is Utopia and why you think that socialism is the expression of that condition.

    The US is not the greatest country in the world…

    Actually, the general world consensus is that it is. It is why the world continually asks America for help. However, there are plenty of America-haters out there, mostly socialists, and occasionally I run across one. Most America haters also believe that America is the greatest country in the world, which is why they hate it so much.

    Not one country has followed your example…

    Actually, most of Europe, many other countries, and the U.N. have tried, but failed to follow our example. They failed to understand the U.S. is based not upon conferring rights upon its people, as the rest of the world does, but upon acknowledging that our rights are natural, that government cannot infringe upon them. It is only the U.S. Constitution that declares that government shall not violate its people’s rights. All others confer rights upon their people, as though the rights belong to the government, not the people, and are gifts from the all-powerful government. As though they were part of the social welfare that you believe to be the cornerstone of government.

    In America, the individual is where the power lies, not the government.

    I genuinely would not move to the US for any reason.

    I believe you. It shows just how far socialism has degraded America. When you visited the U.S., the only places that you saw were undesirable to you because of the result of socialism.

    You would not move here because you do not understand our country, thinking that it is homogeneous. From what you have written over the years, I realize that the places in the U.S. where you don’t want to live are the socialist-run places. These are the places that have everything that you complain about in the U.S., specifically due to their socialist policies. You don’t hear about the good places, because there is so little bad news coming from them and because so few people have complaints about living there. However, we Americans are noticing a huge migration of millions of people from the socialist areas to the free areas of the U.S., just as millions of people leave socialist countries to come to America.

    You are one of the few who understands that much of the U.S. has recently moved so far to the left that they wouldn’t move here, if only they knew.

    You talk about the amount of people willing to risk their lives to move to the US… it only because it is closer for them!

    Actually, Mexico is closer for them, but they prefer to pass through that country in order to pass through desert in order to immigrate here. But you failed to explain why these immigrants are so eager to risk their lives to leave their socialist countries in order to be free. Apparently the world news does not talk about the U.S. as much as you felt it does or as much as I thought it does.

    Seriously….. I know you genuinely cannot ever comprehend, but as I have stated many times, you do not have the only functional method of govenence.

    Seriously, our previous method of governance worked so well that after three hundred years of it we were able to go from a backwoods village unable to feed itself under your preferred method of governance to a power that saved the world. Twice. You keep bragging about how old your continent’s methods of governance are, but those ancient methods were unable to save themselves. Twice. It looks for all the world that your preferred method of governance is not as good as ours. Everything that you have ever complained about our country has been bad due to those who prefer lording over other people — the Democrat Party’s preferred form of governance, the socialist form of governance. The more they lord over us, the worse our country becomes.

    But I’m actually pretty happy with my govenment, and the socialist system I exist, raise my kids, and thrive in.

    You’re happy until it needs rescue. Even your medication has been rescued by America. One reason why medications are so expensive in America is that socialists imposed laws that require that our companies supply pharmaceuticals to other countries at cost, meaning that we Americans supply all the profit that keeps these companies in business and we Americans pay for all the research and development that creates your medication. Even your Wuhan flu vaccine. Your happy lifestyle is a result of my ever-increasingly-socialist government, not yours, which believes that we Americans are the able ones who supply the needy. I am required to subsidize your lifestyle, but I don’t get credit for it, so you assume that it is your happy government doing it for you. You genuinely would not move to the U.S., because then you, too, would have to pay to subsidize the rest of the world’s healthcare. And security.

    Plus, you would have to become more productive in order to pay for all those other people’s lifestyles, and that would reduce your lifestyle. Instead, you prefer being the recipient of largess, not the supplier. Instead, you are content to live off our reduced lifestyle so that you can live a better lifestyle than you produce for yourself. You genuinely would not move to the U.S., because then you genuinely would have to pull your own weight, and more. Why do that when there are others to do it for you? From each according to his ability, to each according to his need. Just like your friends in North Carolina, who won’t move to where the work is, why should a person be able when he can be needy?

    The only good thing that you have ever said about your country’s socialism is its social welfare, that it provides you with your needed medication, but that isn’t even your country doing it, it is my country. You think you have been caught by a safety net, but you are living in a safety hammock year after year, at my expense. You have no idea how happy it makes me every time you are so grateful that you thank we Americans for our largess, giving you your life and your lifestyle.

    Oh, wait. You aren’t, and you don’t.

    The trap that you fail to see is that social welfare can turn into a habit rather than a safety net. Once you. become dependent upon someone else, even a government, then you are no longer free but at their mercy.

    So really, the question we should be asking is why do you prefer a government that cannot protect you or even, without American subsidies, supply you with the healthcare that you so highly praise your government for supplying?

    You have answered my original question: “why is it that other countries have failed so completely in following the U.S. example“? As it turns out, the other countries do not have to become more like America, because their populations are content to depend upon America for their protection, health, and safety. We provide so much that you guys don’t have to work very hard to provide it for yourselves. You don’t even realize that we provide it but assume that your socialist country has provided it for you. You don’t realize that you could or should shoulder part of the burden of supplying the lifestyle that you enjoy. Why not become as good, productive, and generous as the U.S.? Because the U.S. is so good that other countries don’t need to emulate it. Because the rest of the world would take advantage of any other country that becomes as good as the U.S., too. Why should a country be able when it can be needy?

    This explains why socialism always fails. So many people prefer to be the needy rather than be the hard-working. Under socialism, the reward is the same, no matter how needy or how productive. Socialists refuse to believe this, refuse to admit to laziness and greed. However, even the American socialists are now trying to eliminate the rewards here for being productive, so we can expect that soon virtually everyone in the world will be needy and very, very few will be productive. We all will quickly run out of other people’s money.

    Lee, you earlier described what you thought would be a perfect world, where everyone was content. Unfortunately, that contentment currently comes at the expense of a minority 4% of the world. What a much better place the world would be, what a more perfect place the world would be, if the other 96% carried their fair share rather than depending upon that 4% for their contentment.

    I would say “you’re welcome,” but you have shown us that you are among the many who are not grateful for our largess. Like any good socialist, you merely expect others to supply you according to your needs, providing you with unearned contentment.

  • wayne

    Edward-
    good stuff.

    Lee-
    I’m fairly agnostic but what I do know is Christianity is not ‘socialist’ (nor communist) at it’s core. I’m pretty sure you’re mistaken, but then again I’m not the perfect candidate to explain it.
    I know you love my video clips (smile!) so I’ll drop this one in here:

    Jordan Peterson –
    Nihilism, Totalitarianism, and The Divine Individual
    (excerpted from ‘New Years Letter To The World,’ 12-31-2016)
    https://youtu.be/MdsVC_qR4t0
    5:33

    “….the solution to how to organize social being without falling prey to nihilistic divisiveness or deceitful totalitarian certainty, the Group must unite, but under the banner of the individual…”

  • Lee Stevenson

    Ok…. Someone hold my beer….
    Bob .. I do listen, I am not unintelligent, and I am open to being proved wrong. I am not a brick wall, I am just not convinced by any argument I have had on here that I am wrong. Indeed quite the opposite.

    Everyone here knows that if social welfare was provided at the discretion of, and to the donars choice of recipients, there would be massive disparity between groups who received help. A centralised “social safety net” address this. It’s not perfect, and is open to corruption, but so is absolutely any system. One only needs to.look to the church preachers that own privet jets to prove this.
    Quote “the government skims off about 30% to 60% of those earnings to pay big salaries to bureaucrats in Washington, who are definitely not poor.”
    That’s your govenment, not mine. Our politicians, and in the UK are wage capped. Again, corruption is rife, but this is the same wherever money and power are involved.
    I insult the US on some matters I deeply disagree with, and think we do much better in Europe, true, but I also give you guys credit for the many, many things you get right. I believe your social welfare policy stinks. ( As does the UK’s right now, after over a decade of right wing govenment). All arguments kind of fall over when kids are going hungry in a first world country, it happens over there, it’s happening in the UK right now, not in Sweden

  • Lee Stevenson

    Right, Edward, once more in reverse order. ( And I have to say, you contradict yourself several times in your argument… But I can’t rebute such a mass of wrong in one go… Let me know if I miss anything that peeves you!)

    I’m not sure where you get this idea from that the US subsidies Sweden? We are not part of NATO.. ( I voted against joining) and I’m pretty sure we are not a country that receives any form of aid. If you have any kind of proof that does not involve a bloody YouTube video, I am happy to be proved wrong.
    Quote. “This explains why socialism always fails.”… Rebuke… It doesn’t. YOUR brand of socialism you have right now might fail, dictatorial socialism might always fail, but you keep forgetting I live in a democracy. If we don’t like what the govenment is doing, we vote them out.

    Quote “We provide so much that you guys don’t have to work very hard”…. This actually made me laugh out loud!
    Please supply some kind of proof ! I would much rather have sat on my ass all day, rather than working a 9 hour shift working my ass off . I know you don’t mean it literally, but you are under some kind of illusion that a more socialist govenment than the US grants people an easy life. It doesn’t. Now, please take the time to understand this! It means that we work just as hard as any American, we have 99% of the freedoms as any American, however we have a higher tax rate so the poor can get food, and education so they are no longer poor, so EVERYONE has access to the best healthcare, so EVERYONE has the chance to live in home fit to be lived in. So EVERYONE has a ring up the ladder to become a better person, and a net contributer to the pot.

  • Lee Stevenson

    Next.
    Quote “You genuinely would not move to the U.S., because then you genuinely would have to pull your own weight”…. Just rude…. I pull over my weight every day… I would bet a month’s wage I lifted more Lbs than you today.

    You then rant about medication. It is US Phama that has made insulin patentable, when the inventor made it patent free … Way to go US pharmaceutical companies… Make life saving drugs so expensive that people die! Capitalism in action!

    Your next rant of nonsense is “why do migrants not stop in Mexico then?”…. Why do migrants not stop in Greece when they have taken an enormously dangerous ride on a dodgy boat to make it to Europe? The answer is because the more Western nations of Europe offer the promise of a better life. It’s tragic, but we get bodies washing up on the beaches of European countries, some of them babies. It breaks my heart actually, but don’t think you live in the only country people want to live in… Not by a long shot…

  • Lee Stevenson

    Next, quote “From what you have written over the years, I realize that the places in the U.S. where you don’t want to live are the socialist-run places. ”
    I have visited north Carolina, and west Virginia…. If they are socialist then I very much missed it! This comment has me scratching my head!

    I met only folk that refused to take money from the state… that relied on their wits to get by, and were so broke they didn’t have the chance to move for work… ( And to be honest, many of them the inclination to move… They would rather die poor in a CITY with a population of just over 2000 ), the coal and the iron dried up, Very little left for the folks that COULDNT move .. I’m sorry to shout, but you say they should move to find work… But how do you move when you have no money?

    I’m going to skip the whole religious thing, I actually took religious education as a subject in school, I have read both books of the Bible, I still ended up an atheist, but consider Jesus, should he actually be a real historical figure to have been a socialist

    And yes, if not outright, you did imply I kinda condoned both Naziism and Soviet era communism.. Just to make my position even clearer ( which, thank you, this discussion is helping me to distill into a more concise form.

    I believe that the benefits from a democratically elected, socialist leaning govenment, with high taxation, but high social spending, and with a wide ranging social safety net, far outway any benefits from a total libertarian free market system of government.

    My reasons for believing this are thus….

    The right to a good education should be available to everyone, the right to a decent level of housing should be available to everyone, the right to healthcare should be available to everyone, and everyone should have enough food so no one goes asleep hungry.. Everyone should pay their way,

    I have just invented my political manifesto!
    Your turn!

  • Lee Stevenson

    ( oh, and yes, you did help out once or twice in the world wars, we are sorry you were late, but glad you could make it… ) And sorry it hasn’t gone so well since… The American “intervention” ( along with the UK I have to add) in so many countries in the middle East has done nothing but bring death and destruction to millions of innocent people, and destabilise the entire area. Selling arms to Saudi Arabia makes the rest of the world scratch their heads, especially given the nationality of the 9/11 actors…. You live in a decent country, the US still holds the lead in many areas, but don’t for a second believe you hold the status with the rest of the world you may have once had.

  • wayne

    Elon Musk & Akira The Don
    “If you don’t make stuff, there is no stuff.”
    https://youtu.be/nA4Ya-yKJ0A
    3:23

  • wayne

    Lee–

    –just as a general comment– “everyone makes choices.”
    Given that not all people with diabetes require insulin….
    You can get a vial of ‘insulin’ (with a Rx) from walmart for $20 cash, (lancets, test-strips, and syringes are similarly inexpensive)
    If you are ‘poor,’ you qualify for Medicaid and everything is free-to-you. (but always remember, you are not the customer, medicaid is the customer)
    Most diabetics in the USA are covered under private-insurance plans; your co-pays will roughly equal what walmart charges cash-customers. (but always remember, you are not the customer, you pharmacy benefits manager is the real customer)
    “Official” estimates,” say about 2 million “diabetics” in the USA have “no insurance coverage.” (no dissection of Type 1 or Type 2 that I am aware)
    –which begs the question— why don’t we see 2 million people dying in the street?

    —taken in part from a fact sheet from Health Canada 2015—
    ‘Insulin,’ is a noun describing a whole lotta stuff. Up until completely synthetic ‘insulin’ was created, diabetics used “purified” cow & pig ‘insulins,’ harvested from the slaughterhouse.
    -there is a difference between patenting the molecule itself, given human insulin is a complex hormone, process patents did and do exist for processing animal-derived ‘insulins’– short & long-acting versions for example, are synthetically altered analogue’s, they don’t exist in nature.)
    –>There are no patents currently in effect on any formulation of Human insulins already marketed.
    Any patents in effect on analogue-insulins begins expiring in 2016. (range 2016-2025) Four companies, Eli Lilly, Sanofi, Novo Nordisk, and Pfizer, own these patents.
    As of 2016 there will be no patent protection on 11 common insulin-products sold in the USA.
    There has been a massive increase however, on patents for delivery devices, rather than the active ingredient. which may tend to tie users to a specific brand in the future.
    “…unlike other medicines where intellectual property could be seen as a barrier to access this is not the case for human insulin.”

  • Lee Stevenson

    @wayne…. Thank you for the detailed info… Very informative! The one point you make that I raise issue with is.. quote.. “which begs the question— why don’t we see 2 million people dying in the street?”, Diabetes is a chronic sickness… It takes a long time before the effects become obvious on sufferers if they either don’t treat it, or treat it badly. ( I am talking type 1 here).

    I can only give a “boots on the ground” report, from one of the 2 places I have visited in the US.. West Virginia, Mannington, and for a small town, I saw a disproportionate amount of amputees. I also got the impression that they were very adverse to taking any kind of government help. I added one and one together and got two.

    It is great news that Walmart and others are taking out of patent products and selling them at a reasonable price. This is a truly life saving action,

    For the record… You mention “Novo Nordisk” as a big player in the club that controls the insulin industry… One of my two types of insulin is “Nova rapide”…. The other being “insulatard”, produced by the same company… Capitalism in action, except just as in the US, the govenment is the customer. I get them for “free” , ( that’s what I pay my taxes for!) , If I bought them, they would cost about $60 a month. I have no idea about the.price disparity between here and there, and why… Not a clue… But I have my insulin, and it sounds like millions of Americans do at a reasonable, affordable price. Props to the supermarkets that have enabled this, not so much bug pharma…

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