Farmers’ protests in Europe.

Wow. It somehow feels pre-ordained.

                  Wheat fields in Ukraine

The world is facing food shortages brought on, in part by the Russian invasion of Ukraine. The little known fact is that Ukraine is a key agricultural supplier of grain and vegetables, particularly to the middle east, where much of the wheat goes into producing the daily bread of millions of people in Egypt and Lebanon. Interrupting Ukraine agricultural production puts a damper on predicted supply and thus prices in the world market start to rise.

At the same time many western countries have just announced initiatives that will result in reducing food supply from many countries. Several European countries are moving to take agricultural land out of use by government fiat. The one that has attracted the greatest interest has been the Netherlands because the farmers’ reaction to being told that one third of them are going to lose their family farms to reduce nitrogen fertilizer use has brought about massive protests from the farming community. But the Netherlands is far from being the only country to announce this measure – Germany, Italy, France, Belgium and Canada have announced similar measures. Great Britain has opted for paying the farmers to get out of farming, offering buy outs to the oldest (and most experienced of course) farmers.

It is worth noting that none of these decision are being made with the intent of INCREASING agricultural production. Removing high nitrogen fertilizers from use will, provably (see Sri Linka), reduce crop yields dramatically and, at the same time they are taking land out of production.

Sri Lanka some three years ago banned the import of high nitrogen fertilizer. The President claimed it was a virtuous move to reduce emissions, but, in reality it was forced because the country lacked foreign reserves to pay for the import of high nitrogen fertilizer. The results? Crop yields collapsed and the middle class disappeared into poverty.

A person whom I admire, very much, Neil Oliver who has become an international figure for his sane commentaries and observations on real life as seen from Scotland has, in recent weeks, been stating that amidst all the confusion of Covid, lock downs, energy bills spiking, Inflation, energy supplies in Europe becoming problematical one philosophical principle helps make things understandable:

The simplest explanation that fits all the facts is probably the correct one” – a paraphrase of Occam’s Razor. I heartily agree with Mr Oliver on this.

Why are the governments of Europe enacting a policy that most voters seem to have no clue about? Why are they choosing (or being told to choose) such a course of action at this time?

At the same time that they are doing this, those self same governments have been investing untold billions of dollars into windmills and solar panels, forcing their populations to transfer their transportation to Electric Powered vehicles, adopt electric heating and not gas, in the UK’s case they wish people to adopt “heat pumps” instead of gas heating, Note all these “choices” will cost far more than the current options, Installing a heat pump is a minimum of ten thousand pounds, electric vehicles are more expensive to buy than petrol or diesel vehicles and will require a massive increase in building up of the national power grid.

The investments required for all this are ENORMOUS.  And the results are not even definite, there is no proof at all that this will result in some sort of perfect planet. Or that things will magically become cheaper. Most people will be financially much worse off than they are now.

Neil Oliver said it best – at least for me. “They are taking away choice“. The governments of this world, or at least the western part of it, have decided that it is time to restrict the ability of ordinary members of their country to make choices. They are adopting policies that will increase the cost of energy and travel which will force us out of cars and onto buses, they are adopting policies that will dramatically increase the price of food, particularly meat, so that anything other than a very basic meal plan will be out of most of our reach. They are doing this without asking. They are merely telling.

In T.H. White’s seminal work “The Once and Future King” there is a part where Merlin the Wizard is instructing the young Arthur by using examples from the animal kingdom. You may remember the Walt Disney cartoon “The Sword in the Stone” which was a telling of part of this. He turns Arthur into a fish and a bird as life lessons. In the book there are more examples – one of which involved turning Arthur into an ant. Arthur got to see what the motto of the Kingdom of the Ants was;

“Everything not forbidden is compulsory”

The Cloudy Atmosphere

I read an article today on Ars Technica a site I keep track of though I find it inadequate in many respects, not because of bad writing – the article itself is well written – but because the people writing and editing on this site very rarely try to present a rounded picture.

The article is about how Climate Change and tackling it have become more important to a majority of Americans and how there is a majority who favor supporting the expansion of renewable energies and increasing government regulation to encourage it;

While it's intriguing to see how many people accept reality, it’s the questions about energy policy that produce the most interesting answers. When asked about whether the US should prioritize developing wind and solar energy or expanding oil, natural gas, and coal, 79 percent chose renewables. That’s considerably higher than Pew’s polls from just a few years ago. That number is the partly due to strengthening support among Democrats, but it’s also the result of growth among Republicans in the last few years—65 percent of whom chose renewables.

This seems like a fairly innocuous commentary – borne out by surveys. The USA is becoming more “Climate Aware”!

But is it really? Did the survey ask the key question – what are you willing to pay in money or inconvenience to achieve the improvements you say you support? How much more per gallon on gasoline? What percentage increase in your electricity bill? What increases in your personal taxation will you support to do this? That is the key about support.

Like a lot of conservatives I am a fan of doing more with less. If we had the money our house would be solar powered and off the grid. As it is we are on our own well and we have a septic system and, should good fortune smile we would install solar not because of fears of Climate Change or Ars Technica articles – but because it is neater and more self reliant. Though I say that in the sure and certain knowledge that, should it become viable for people in our kind of demographic to afford a full off the grid solar set up we would immediately be attacked for the materials used in the panels.

It is easy to get people to say they support programs and initiatives that they do not have to personally pay for. I myself am totally willing to enact a hefty tax, payable by journalists and leftist think tanks exclusively, to fund better gun safety and training in schools. I have my doubts that it would pass, though it should.

I stopped listening to the left and the likes of Ars Technica on the day I realized that they are opposed to Nuclear Power which is the ONLY mass scalable energy supply that has a viable, no emission future.

It has never been about “climate”.

Making people with disorders perform for Climate Alarmism is wrong

I am in an invidious position in regard to Greta Thunberg.

I am going to have to write something defending this young woman and both sides who are currently vapouring themselves blue in the face are going to hate me for it. The Left who are busily pushing her out on the world’s stage and the lefty media that are busily shining the spotlight are as equally disgusting as the conservatives who are addressing her statements with insults about her arrogance or her stupidity.

A plague on both your houses.

Greta Thunberg is an abused young woman.

According to the hagiography produced by her mother, Greta has OCD and Aspergers. The mother also asserts, apparently seriously, that Greta can “see” the odorless, colorless gas called carbon-dioxide.

Now, normally parents spend a lot of time educating their children about things which the children might well imagine but which are not true. At some point in their lives most children get to understand that Santa Claus doesn’t bring the Christmas presents, The Tooth Fairy does not leave money under the pillow and the Easter Bunny doesn’t distribute loads of sweets and chocolate Easter eggs. We, as parents try to introduce circumstances or material which helps the child realize… it’s called growing up.

Many children have problems dealing with their imaginary fears. Monsters in the Cupboards or under the beds, ghostly creatures, animals that talk,scary movies or stories. There is a long list. Many of us who are parents can tell stories of showing a child there is nothing under the bed or in the closet and sitting with them until they settle down. Like the fantasies of free sweets, money or prezzies the monsters also, usually, fade with time.

Young people who have OCD (obsessive compulsive Disorder) can be prey to their own anxieties. They can feel that if they do not adopt or maintain a habit then bad things can happen to them. If they don’t wash their hands enough, or don’t sort their clothes correctly it can induce distress, sometimes hysterical. The patterns are individual to the person. Aspergers Syndrome covers a large amount of territory and one of the main features of it is extreme awkwardness in social situations. The inability to understand or empathize with others, the tendency to be extremely literal the inability to absorb or distinguish abstract information. I have included a link below to an article that covers a lot of it.

Ms Thunberg apparently has become obsessed with the fear of Climate Change.

Please let’s note something at this point – this is not about the truth or untruth of climate change. It is about her obsession with the fear of the subject.

Now. Normally most of us, as parents, would seek to allay our child’s fears especially if the child was fixating or obsessing about them. But with children with OCD and Aspergers this would be an incredibly delicate and difficult task to do.

Now Greta’s fears fit with how the Climate/Green Cabal would like most people to react. Blind panic. Obsessive fear. But in Greta’s case this state is enabled by her condition, not the evidence.

But never mind!! It will do!!

So childhood fears are dragged out, made manifest and paraded around the world’s stage. Newspapers magazine and TV hang on the words of a young woman who cannot explain what Climate Change actually is – but can describe how afraid she is of it. And she is applauded for this. She is given attention by all sides who are, all of them, cementing her fears into public policy – or at least attempting to do so.

And then we have people from the conservative side explaining how stupid this view of hers is, how arrogant she is, so on and so on. Judging her as though she is some sort of young adult prodigy when she is simply a person with issues who has been exploited by the leftist media and the eco-lytes because her condition suits them perfectly.

Understand this – please – Greta Thunberg is not some adult who has come to an intellectual conclusion about a scientific proposition. She is a young woman/girl with a condition that feeds her fears and she lacks the awareness to even understand how she appears to others.

What we should be campaigning about and complaining about is the utter cold-heartedness of the Climate Alarmist Cabal and their willingness to push out on the public stage a person with issues to perform to their desires.

It is disgusting and it is abuse. Her fears do not validate the “science” the fact that she is afraid is because of her condition and these disgusting excuses for human beings are grinding her into the ground.

Please do not help them.

Attack the organ grinders not the performing little act.

The Big Dirty

Well, well.

Google – the incredibly “woke” mega-corporation that consumes more electrical power than many nations is hosting a quiet enclave or get-together in an environmentally friendly location in Sicily (a renowned place world wide for its ecological progress and quiet understated luxury and helicopter pad)

The rich who wish to appear “woke” and “meaningful” – like Prince Harry, or DiCaprio, or Obama are arriving in squadrons of private jets (last count 114) and a few private mega yachts. Theoretically they could establish air speriority and could launch an amphibious assault on any small nation that dares use anything more intensive than dung for cooking fires. But out of sheer compassion and empathy they would refrain, I guess.

So, while the woke, well heeled wankers of the world are waffling, can we, the great unwashed, expect far seeing policies and initiatives for the woke and condemnation for the polluters of the world? How will they deal with the villains? What will they be saying?

One would expect to see some high powered criticism of those who are failing to make the grade, for those who are not following the diktats of the woke and the powerful.

Quick Quiz for those in the know;

Which country has the worlds highest output of CO2?

Which country dumps the most plastic in the world’s oceans?

Which Country and it’s leader comes in for the most criticism from the eco fruit loops?

Well if you listen to the woke there is no doubt, at all, about who is responsible for all the major issues. The USA? Right? And its President Donald Trump? Or the Trump Administration – amiright?

Hmmm. So the rich people in their private jets and super yachts meeting at a super expensive resort in Sicily are going to be brave and speak against…

Well who should they speak out against?

The number one producer of CO2 in the world is …. China. Over twice as much CO2 as the USA. And climbing. And aiming to climb higher even more.

The number one dumper of plastic into the world’s oceans? … why… China. 17 times as much as the USA. In fact the USA is not even in the top five countries for dumping plastic into the ocean.

Yet the only campaigns we hear about are – against plastic straws in the USA??? Why the effort to reduce such a meaningless non-event from the cafes, diners and restaurants in the USA? It is not even a blip on the screen? Why not proitest the countries that are doing the wort of the dumping?

Why are they not pushing to Boycott Divestment and Sanctions against China? That nation and that regime are a danger to the world. Instead what we see are leftists screaming about Boycotting Israel, who are the only democracy in the middle east that actually cares and protects minorities, they waffle on about banning plastic straws and they elevate an uneducated Swedish schoolgirl to some sort of virtue signaling guru status.

Seriously – if you every saw this as the plot in a movie you would gag on your popcorn.

Time to bring those who ignore laws and the constitution, to justice

It is time to assign both responsibility and (given today’s litigious atmosphere) liability to various cities, states and corporations.

1) If you own a business that transacts in public and you post a “No firearms permitted” sign on your premises you are responsible for the safety of all people who come there to do business. If you fail to provide armed security and monitored access to prevent weapons being carried in you are liable for all injuries and damages incurred by any customer who is attacked in your premises while being prevented from defending themselves.

2) If you own a restaurant or other public dining establishment and fail to protect your customers from harassment by non customers and if you do not immediately order the intruders to leave and call the police you will be in violation of the health code and your place of business will be shut down until your health violation is remedied and you will be fined by the day until it is addressed.

3) If you sign an executive order, memo or other document stating that you are declaring your area of responsibility a “sanctuary” you are, personally, criminally liable for each and every harmful act committed by people covered by your edict.

It is time to make it painful for elected representatives and business owners who prefer to endanger people rather than just do their jobs. It is time to make them accountable.

Pardon my confusion

the USA Women’s National Team won their semi-final game against England today and are through to the final.

Congratulations to them – I must admit to not really being that interested in the game but I can appreciate a good performance when I hear about it.

But it made me think.

What is going to happen with this competition? Will transgenders start appearing in the teams?

There are some points here that may not be obvious to an American audience not really familiar with the sport of football (soccer in the USA) . People unfamiliar with the game of soccer and, in particular professional soccer have the impression that there should be an easy transition from a woman playing in a woman’s league to a team playing in a men’s league.

It is not true. Physically the game on the men’s side is faster and a lot more physical. This would be natural as there have been men’s professional leagues for well over a century and the game has been constantly refined. But if you do not watch soccer and follow the professional sport then watching the Women’s game may give you the impression that the levels are comparable.

Just to be clear here – I am not casting aspersions at the quality of the footie played by the women’s teams. They are in many cases, good, the international games are becoming more and more competitive . But if you compare the two you will see what I am referring to.

I know of only one episode of a professional women’s soccer player playing on a semi pro team . This was, to be fair, a few years ago and it was not viable.

I am not sure if further trials have been done, I doubt it.

So now – what happens if transgender female players come onto the scene?

That one simple thing has transformed some areas of Women’s athletics in the USA.

What is going to happen?

I can no longer just sit in quiet discomfort

I have always been of the opinion that abortion is a subject between a patient and her GP. I personally find the idea abhorrent but I have always thought that it is like any medical procedure – sometimes it is necessary. I am not judging why it would be found necessary – just that I agree that it should be legal and should be an option that any person can freely discuss with her MD.

That does not mean that I support the slavish zeal of Planned Parenthood whom I consider to be a racist organization. I think the subject of “abortion” has long ago been submerged in the political activism around it.

My first misgiving was reading that Planned Parenthood had appealed a Texas law that stated that people performing the abortion procedure had to have admitting rights to the local hospital – something which is required for all outpatient facilities that perform medical procedures. I still do not understand the opposition to the law. I understand that pro-choice people think that it is being pushed and enacted by pro-life campaigners. But my point is – it may well be true that it is a law being championed by people who are pro-life – but SO WHAT? The idea of the law strikes me as being sound clinics that perform abortions should have to adhere to the standards of out-patient clinics that perform procedures. Period. What is wrong with that?

Gosnell was, or should have been, a clarion call to SUPPORTERS of planned parenthood that they do not supervise their clinics properly – or that there are “gaps” that they need to address.

All of this made me uneasy.

But what just floored me was the public support given by legislators in the State of New York cheering on the idea that babies that SURVIVE the abortion attempt should be allowed to die. They should be put to one side and just left to die.

I cannot get past this. I cannot get past the picture of those people cheering this. I cannot understand how this is not, at the very least, manslaughter or infanticide. It is unforgivable.

Coal – the friend of poor people everywhere

The amount of new coal fired power stations in the world is increasing – rapidly.

A sample article from the Alarmist sites ;

Coal Power Generating plant in India

Since the year 2000, coal fired generation has DOUBLED in capacity. It is set to increase by a further 25% in the next few years. All of this is in China, India, the developing world. With the Western , developed world, cutting back and shuttering coal plants or converting them to gas.

Why are these countries (and 16 MORE countries) doing this?

It is both simple and moral.

By building power infrastructure these countries will be immensely improving the lives of their citizens. With a stable grid supply villages and small towns that eke out a living “off the grid” will be able to be deploy appliances that will make the lives of the inhabitants both easier – and healthier. Little known fact – it is estimated that between 3 and 4 million people annually die early due to the indoor pollution in their homes where meals are prepared over fires supplied by dry dung. Hot water to clean is a luxury, pumps for fresh water are non-existent – the list goes on.

Why coal? Most of these countries have coal resources. It costs far less time and money to build coal powered stations than to take up large swathes of land for imported solar panels that produce erratically. It gets power to people who need it – and who, when they get it – will be able to produce more, live better and live longer.

It’s pretty simple really. Real power to the real people.