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Comments by ZanCRX

EchoZero's Paper

The goals of current research are to make coal into a liquid to replace gasoline as a fuel source for engines. This research should be expanded the include diesel fuels and aviation fuels to cover the spectrum of a large of consumer consumption.
Would current vehicles be able to use liquid coal as a straight substitute for gasoline, diesel, or aviation fuel? Would the engines have to be modified or replaced?

Current problems to overcome include cleaning the coal and its byproducts so that the emission are clean enough to please the down to earth environmental groups.
To me, this wording gives the impression that you are opposed to the emission controls and that the only reason to adopt these emission controls is to please the environmentalists, not to preserve the environment.

also coal processing plants will sprout up in locations that house current oil refineries.
Wouldn't this cost a lot? Or are the coal processing facilities technologically similiar to oil refineries?

To compare NASA receives roughly $16 billion dollars annually, or approximately one-percent of the federal budget.
NASA seems unrelated, maybe pick a different statistic to relate to, such as one relating to coal / gasoline / oil / energy, etc.

Otherwise, great start for the paper. Strong argument and good factual backup.

npartist's Paper

First off, I like the paper a lot so far and agree completely with your position.

For the best long term results, the US Government should increase funding for hybrid and hydrogen fuel cell vehicles and set a date for production.
Why? (i'm not disagreeing, just provide support.) Also, some argue that hybrids are not viable in the long run and that they drain MORE resources than a conventional car of similar size and performance.

One problem is that “light trucks” are exempt, this includes pickup trucks and SUV’s which are of course the main gas guzzling vehicles on the road.
How about "medium trucks"? The Ford Excursion SUV, for example, is so large it is no longer a "light truck" and has even fewer regulations, and may not even be obligated to post EPA fuel economy figures.

Raising the minimum mpg for vehicles would cause either a drastic decrease in horse power in vehicles or an increase in cost due to the tax and extra research and development performed by the manufacture.
"drastic" is a powerful word. Would this be worthwhile anyway? Technologies exist already that would require little additional R&D that would improve fuel efficiency on many vehicles. For example, the Honda Odyssey has a 255 horsepower V6 engine and get 21/28 mpg, while the Chevrolet Uplander has a 200 horsepower engine and gets only 18/24 mpg. Why the difference? Honda's engine uses modern technologies that is readily available to Chevrolet (such as variable valve timing, displacement on demand, 4 valves per cylinder, aluminum block, dual overhead camshafts).

The only way to truly provide long term results is to move the current petroleum-based motor vehicle production over to a hydrogen fuel cell one.
Is this truely feasible? It's the media's hype right now but there are huge hurdles to get over before this could happen. For instance, it takes energy to extract hydrogen into a usable form. Where is this energy going to come from?

Again, I like the paper and the rest of it is well done and provides good factual support.

Scharnhorst's Paper

End it with the cost per day of the Iraq war and how much harm it did to the credibility of the US and compare it to the peacekeepings cost which are substantially lower and more beneficial
I know this is not complete, but what is "more beneficial"? Would Saddam have been disarmed if it were up to the UN?

(Note by Scharnhorst: It's hard to disarm somebody who isn't armed to begin with. Saddam let the inspectors back in but that wasn't good enough for President Bush. It's now known that Iraq had no weapons of mass destruction. Thanks for the comments though.:] )

US should support UN peacekeeping missions because then it could more easily secure UN support for peacekeeping in the aftermaths of its own unilateral operations, such as afghanistan and Iraq

Seems hypocritical of the US to support bringing democracy and humanitarian aid to Iraq through force but in the same light oppose UN peacekeeping measures.

Good points, these are potentially very powerful points to make. However, it might be worth mentioning that Iraq has been in violation of UN sanctions for years and they continued to get away with it.

It was this blueprint that would set the stage for over two dozen future peacekeeping missions...
How did these peacekeeping missions fare?

Good factual data throughout the paper, and the paper already sounds professional.

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