Flint: Bottled Water Verses Rainwater

   It is very expensive to deliver bottled water to people’s homes. Rainwater is delivered quite regularly already. We, here at McDonald Philosophy, have been working on methods of rainwater collection. If a sufficient filter can be attached to any of seven models, rainwater can be collected even for drinking. But that we are not collecting rainwater for washing defies belief. In Bermuda, where the ground does not hold water any better than Americans hold new ideas, they have been collecting and drinking even roof rainwater for a century.

   Does everyone simply assume that rainwater is dirty? When we used lead in the gas, one might expect lead in the rainwater east and north of a city, but now the air is fairly clear in most places. And the water coming out of the pipes, where do we think that came from? And we think it best to first run it through the poisoned ground in Flint, then down the poisoned river and through the poisoned pipes, then try to filter it? We seem to have this image that water must be “treated” and made artificial by some government controlled process. And is bottled water tested, say, for plastic after it has sat in the sun? The challenge in inventing water collection systems is keeping the collection system clean, as roofs are exposed to bird droppings. If I leave mine out, I have to wash it good before a rain, usually washing it with well water. We have one model that folds up, so that it is covered, and unfolded before a rain. This, and my plastic and dowel on a frame model, I would have produced and delivered for sale in Flint, but there are no investors. One cannot do these things by oneself, especially if blacklisted and ostracized for having new ideas.

   With the method pictured on the Inventions page in the menu of this website, I have for nearly a year collected almost all my own drinking water. If I could afford to test it, I would, and if I could afford a sand and charcoal or graphite filter, I would have one. I use coffee filters, which work fine for the big stuff, But for the most part, my water is pristine, and leaves no film on the containers, as the well water does. That, too, we want to test, as no one has looked into the spread of poisons from Mount Salem under the ground toward Northville Township. And we watch collecting water when the wind blows from the south.

Flint Water Funds Run Dry: No Rainwater In Sight

Funds for bottled water will soon cease to flow, and Flint has still not figured out to stop relying on government and turn to rainwater, at least to supplement the leaden city water system. Rain barrels could have been providing much water for washing, but they are watching this go down the drain. Inventions for rainwater collection systems are ignored, or cycled here among a few fellow authors on WordPress, while entrepreneurs and fellow inventors play on Facebook, and Google just cannot seem to locate my website on any of the search engines. Seriously, can no one who wants to make things and make money, can no one see that it is possible to filter and collect rainwater for drinking, at half the trouble and expense of bottled water? Can no one see the possibilities for patents and inventions regarding water? Can no one see that it is possible to collect rainwater in a larger a way, for whole communities, and even to sell bottled rainwater, if it can be filtered and tested? The future use of these systems will only increase, while Flint and everyone else watches the rain water go through the poisoned ground, the poisoned rivers and poisoned pipes before they try to filter it. I can see these possibilities, and it is quite painful to watch Flint fumbling around with bottled water and new pipes while the rain flows down the drain. That is why my vice is libertarian cynicism. A bit of integrity in about five different offices and areas, and these problems would long ago have been moveing toward these obvious solutions.

Meanwhile the Trump fever does seem to have broken with his recent drop in the polls, after a continuous and meteoric rise. America may be seeing through the sham behind the curtain, and be on her way home to Kansas after all regardless. That is why The Wizard of Oz is the American Myth.

Rain Collector Design Variation

We have various ideas for a rainwater collector, and one was made of sheet metal like that used for heat ducts. We had it unfolding on a stand like a card table, and now we have added a sheet metal top that opens, on to more legs to go with the stand. Can you see it? The top would make it so that the contraption could be closed when it is not raining, to keep the inside collection surface clean. One problem is securing it in the wind, so maybe the legs could have holes for stakes at their ends. It is usually windy when it is raining.

Having a card table thing that opens brings the surface aria closer to 4×8, which’ll git ya five gallons in a good rain.

Food Safe Plastic for Flint Rainwater Collection

After about fifteen minutes searching we have some suggestions about food safe plastic sheets. High density polyethylene is good, and Low density is ok for plastic leaching harmful stuff into the water. These are milk jug and bread bag plastic, respectively. PETE (Polyethylene teraphalate) is for pop bottles. This info comes mostly from Annie B in a safe food website. All plastics do something in sunlight we would want to know about. In the meantime, we just won’t leave our collector out in the sun, wash it or let the first of the rain flow off it, a libation..

Product Details

Clear Polyethylene Sheeting, 3 Mil 10′ x 25′

by Thermwell Products Co Inc

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… Frost King 10 x 25′ 3 Mil Clear Plastic Sheeting – Use For Painting …

Flint: See, the Filters Do Not Quite Work For That Much Lead

Watch out where the Huskies go

And Don’t you eat that yellow snow-

Frank Zappa

Look up! Fresh water falls from the sky. All we have to do is collect it and test it. We should not collect it downwind from factories, dusty cow pastures and such. We have a little time before the best rain collecting season begins, to find a food-safe plastic and 5 gallon Absopure bottles. In the mean time, collecting snow and melting it is fun, and good when it is fresh under open sky. We used to make snow ice cream when we were kids, and everyone used to know one couls eat snow and drink snow water. Our roofs could have rain barrels for bathwater, or we could roll up our food-safe plastic, go up and unveil it on a section of roof, staple it down, and get ready to catch it.

Turns out the filters are not much good over 150 ppm, and their highest reading was 4000. I am not even sure my stovetop distiller gets out all the parts per million, and we like stainless steel for all the parts because it seems most inert. If you trust me, you will not trust that phosphorus coat the pipes idea, either. We’ll lay new pipes, or evacuate Flint. The burbs might be able to handle the influx of refugees.

We want Garrison Keillor to advertise rainwater like he does Catsup and rhubarb pie and powdered milk. “If your seated next to a Child, be sure to drink your own whisky before drinkin the child’s whiskey.”

Warnings Ignored

For the first time in my life, I am hearing about Bob Ebeling, the engineer who warned about the shuttle disaster for two days before the launch. The engineers tried very hard to convince NASA that it was too cold to launch because the seals would not seal. No one would listen. I have lived thirty years with the image of the disaster, and never even heard the story of Ebeling’s warning.

Mona Hanna-Attisha, the doctor who discovered the lead problem in Flint, also tried to warn. he was told that her figures were wrong by an agency that had fifty experts. She and her cohorts doubted their figures for about two hours, then returned to their efforts to alert the city.

In both these stories, it is difficult in hindsight to imagine how such warnings could be ignored, with no one stopping to check. In the Flint case, we very much would like to know why the agency with fifty experts did not listen, and at least check, especially after her reconsideration. Surely the Attorney General will examine these moments in detail. One gets the impression that the agency with fifty experts is not even considering the data, but making decisions for self interested financial reasons and obligations to Big money. We get the impression that decisions are being submitted above to billionaires for an ok on the financial interests effects, to be calculated by accountants before anything is done in government.

Questions, though, are finally being raised about the ability of this sort of an America to respond to crises. On D-Day, the reason the Americans made the landing on Omaha Beach was that, after their commanders were killed and scattered, they were able to make their own decisions due to a life of being raised in Liberty. The Nazis were all afraid to make decisions on their own, but had to wait in fear for the command of the Fuhrer. By the time these commands came, their responses were much too late.

So, when we are trying daily to get word to someone, especially about road salt and the danger to every single lead water pipe in the country where road salt is used, we have Bob and Mona to think of, two who have gone before us through far more difficulty and opposition. Still, no one seems to understand even the simplest things, like that clean water often falls right from the sky. Eggs come from Chickens, hens and not roosters. We are also warning about the internet. We have called the Governor twice, NPR three times, WWJ twice, our Federal Representative twice about the internet (he listens). We have had just a couple word-of-mouth visitors here on word-of-mouth press, but no one has even called us back with any questions. Meanwhile, they drink brown water in Flint while rain and snow fall from the sky, and road salt may be moving closer to our wells and reservoirs, for all we know. The internet search engines are all blocked, and government spying inhibits thoughts that everyone does not already understand, from being spoken without stigma, and soon perhaps from even being thought. ISIS advances.

Is Roadsalt Dissolving Our Pipes? / Rainwater and Distilled

The little problem in Flint may be a little more broad than we thought. Marc Edwards of Virginia Tech  has run into some interesting opposition, say from the EPA, who may have done more than ignore his attempts to warn us about corrosion and lead pipes. Maybe that is why Virginia Tech retired from the project. This very day, the likely cause is being ignored, and the news agencies just report what they are told by well paid and pressured agencies and experts. That’s ok, EPA: The President can see you, and now he’s looking! That’s ok, Flint emergency managers and DPW who could not foresee and figure out the problem. That’s OK, internet, who extorts for access and perverts the truth under the slightest gain or pressure. That’s ok, America, who puts up with this corruption in every aspect of our lives for a few pennies on a gallon or a coupon for pop. Drink up! If you get depressed about your lead poisoning, we have lots of nice prescription drugs for you, and maybe even a job in the industry! Just keep the campaign funds coming, Americans, because this is the slavish and corrupt government that we have voted for, nay, insisted upon. A small-looking dishonesty leads to a large effect, but then it is too late.

People do not understand water distillation and precipitation, and I always forget this. When I call NPR, the Governor’s office or WWJ, I have to remember that they do not understand that basically ONLY WATER precipitates so that if nothing else enters the collector, from the sky below the raindrop or from the collection method itself, the water is pristine, roughly 100% pure. But that is ok, Americans, drink up! I am bitter today.

More Thoughts on Flint and Rainwater

These inventions grow like trees in branches, or like frost on the window. That very factory up in Swiss Alps-  you know, the one that collects mountain spring water pouring out of the place high in the snow-peaked mountain, that place- what if they put my rainwater collection system up on their roof, and ran it down the wall and into the factory, over the bottles, along the assembly line at the bottling plant, and sold my bottled rainwater, as an addition to the distilled water and the water from the taps?

Idea # 2 for today: Automatic water distillers can be fit to furnaces designed for the purpose. Some engineering is required to get the house water to flow into the distiller when it is low, and to sense when the full five gallons is collected. Again, this is zero energy dollars in the winter, overcoming the biggest problem with stove top distilling. Good, now every home in America might have five gallons in reserve, and the lead is not supposed to go with the steam. The distiller must be cleaned occasionally- probably by guys in hazmat suits, like the painters.

The best idea of the day may be this: for the Flint water crisis, Dean Kamen has a waterbox that is a marvel, though it requires electricity. It uses pressure, the way the factory that bottles distilled water for 85 cents a gallon does. We, however, like low tech, and think that manual backup is the key to surviving the effects of our own technology.

Idea #3-4

Instead of plastic or cloth, one could use a sheet of glass, say from a door wall, or even a sheet of inert metal, and tilt the thing at a three dimensional diagonal, and all the water would flow into the collector.

The trick is to turn the two dimensional collecting surface into the three dimensional object required to focus the water.

We have also considered people in Flint running a six foot strip of plastic all along their back fences, propping up the one unsupported side, then putting in rocks and positioning collectors. This works well until the wind whips up. And until it snows! Then, collect the water right away from a place with open sky, watch for bugs, birds and sticks, bring it in and let it melt!


Bottled Rainwater

Here is an idea for a whole business, bottling and selling rainwater. At the grocery store, they have 2 or three kinds of water, distilled and spring and mineral water. Rainwater would be a third or fourth alternative. If it is pure, it would tend to absorb toxins and minerals, and might become trendy for that reason. I would set up twenty collectors, order some bottles and get the food testing folks to analyze and ok it, and I’d be in business. Maybe we’ll try another Kickstarter type campaign. Anyone want to try it? We’d be more likely to strike it this way than that stupid lotto.