Protest as a fashion accessory

Just as I didn’t know what to watch after Wallace and Gromit, I switched to the remainder of the Liberal hustings to hear the end of the discussion. It went like this:

Question: “Do you think we should curb internal flights?”

[Answer: “I don’t think that is feasible at the moment, we need to invest in transport infrastructure. But I went to protest with my  5-year old with Extinction Rebellion over the weekend”]

Policitians who make decisions about this climate emergency have no fear of delaying immediate action to stop environmentally unfriendly behaviour and most likely commute a lot by car and plane but do go to Extinction Rebellion demos, block traffic for others, to have a bit of fun on the weekend.

So I do not bother going to those demos to say there is a climate emergency. I rather live environmentally friendly, it is not a weekend fashion for me, it is important.

What really should be done by our politicians, they should immediately make the money available to build the infrastructure and not think of investing in the future at some point in the future.

Climate change is happening now, a dangerous heatwave is hitting the US, lakes are drying out, we need to change now.

We won’t find any entrepreneurs putting money into saving the environment, it has to come from governments spending money on saving the environment everywhere.


I love a book full of statistics. It saves me compiling them and luckily there are always plenty of published number crunches to relate to.

When I started reading Steven Pinker’s book Enlightenment Now, I started to feel, he was a little too simplistic and tries to make a case that the rich make the live of the poor easier and better.

I do however like the slant on Humanism in the under-title. And whilst I am now on the Environment chapter, I am starting to get interested.

Frightening though the samples Steven Pinker gives by quoting Paul Watson who wants to radically reduce humanity to fewer than one billion.

sand desert blue sky egypt

Photo by David McEachan on

I think that is a very dangerous approach. I belief that the Egyptian Pharaoh culture simply died because the Egyptians spent too many of their scarce resources  on building the pyramids. With the technology available at the time, most of the human labour available must have gone into shaping those stones and putting them into the triangular shapes that built the Pyramids. People didn’t have enough time to spend on planting, harvest and dealing with environmental emergencies or attacks from other forces. Nor did they have the time to develop better technogies.

If we reduce humanity to the bare existence level, we will suffer similar consequences by not being able to sustain technology, which was only able to develop because we have gotten so much spare resources laying around.

Our lifestyles now are becoming increasingly inflexible. We rely more and more on the same habits to do all things each day. We regulate every spare niche of our lives with increasingly complicated laws. This inflexibility in itself is a major hindrance on making real progress. We cannot possibly maintain all that technology with few people.

person holding save our planet sign

Photo by Markus Spiske on

We cannot possibly change our world by leaving it the way it is and try to reduce our carbon foot prints alone.

The fact that Amazon rainforest countries demand the right to develop their lands puts a big dampener on our enthusiams, which rely on the existence of the rainforest.

We need to come to an international agreement that we either re-settle all peoples who reside in current rain forest regions and settle them in other nations. Or another possibility is forcing all nations to have a certain amount of forest areas within each country.

The latter option will require a lot of loss of sovereignity of each nation on the planet. Whilst we cannot even cope with Europe at present, how are we going to enter world-wide agreements?

One major source of pollution is travel and air travel causes more air pollution than previously thought.

We need to radically change values and the calculation of wealth from purely being a plus in the bank acount to being a whollistic view on positive contribution to global wealth including the health of the planet.

Humanism is the best way to achieve this because we cannot continually kick each other’s backsides but believing that God loves us all whilst we destroy each other and the planet. For what, a better afterlife? The Egyptians beliefed in a great afterlife.


(t(rain)ed) under

It is heartbreaking to read about the disruptions the weather causes to people and transport of goods. train lines are rained under throughout Britain and even electrical fires have broken out. Yet it is just part of the normal earth warming patterns that we see increased rains, more flooding and all the problems that come with it.

Yet I do wonder whether people in our government planning departments are plain stupid or just try to ignore the warnings.

I think that the Mayan calendar marked the change in the environment correctly in that it predicted it as a known pattern to occur on earth. Perhaps earth warming is always caused by some type of over population of a species that happens to be pre-dominant on earth at that time, whether its dinosaurs or humans.

Yet we see plenty of more plans to build high speed train lines between London and Birmingham, built Crossrail in London and all just because men like to play with trains. It is quite and totally predictable that Crossrail will suffer immense flooding with rising seawater levels and that train lines in the centre of Britain are likely to suffer increased flooding due to higher rain and groundwater levels.

Yet the government feels fit to announce that they plan to spend billions on new high speed train lines. Estuary airports are likely to be built but what when tsunami style waves hit it, what if water levels rise generally, how much can the whole airport rise with it and what are defences for storms?

Simultaneously the government has announced they want to have less critical thinking in universities instead of more.

I think Britain is an excellent example how jobs for the boys help to bring decision-making processes to stupid dimensions. It’s not just boys, its also the whole network of company and personal relations that brings silly decision making processes about. It is definitely wrong to accuse any particular individual of Cronyism and lose follow on libel battles at High Court level because the practise goes through society like a mesh generally and one simply cannot point out single individuals who are involved in it.

Has anybody seriously considered better water based transport services *like boats? Obviously the cargo industry has catched up with new demand and developed huge container ships. Many more human travels could be switched to boats and house building could change to floating homes for example. There could be new industries like plumbing points for house boats for example or homes that could float and stand on firm ground.

Obviously life has to slow down in some respects to avert away from air based fast travel to more slow but manageable sea based transport. Also what does the rising of sea levels do to the value of land deeds?

*This content was added on 23/12/12

London is full of it – aeroplanes

I sat at my local playground yesterday and was realising that up above in the sky there were many aeroplanes ascending and descending. By the size of the planes and direction, I could determine which ones came from London City airport and could probably guess, which ones came and went to Gatwick or Heathrow. Quite a lot of aeroplanes went overhead. In fact I think that the whole of London now has become a fly zone as there are several airports in and around London.

Looking overhead at times I could see 2 planes crossing paths and I started to think what would I do if I saw a crash overhead. Luckily the crossing paths were from planes who were above and underneath each other and not on the same height.

Yet it startles me to think that there would be even more air traffic above and that with an increase in volume also the risk of accident would increase with it. I can only compliment Boris Johnson for his strict opposition on a third runway for Heathrow.

The row on air traffic continue but is it not possible to ask people to change their commuting and communication habits rather than built more and more airports?

I saw only 1 helicopter in the space of 2 hours but plenty of very large passenger air planes that seem to be carrying people rather than goods. Why do people have to fly around so much and how can we avoid it. Of course there are attempts to build green planes but still the volume of traffic means that more and constant alertness to avoid collisions is needed and that is the more immediate serious danger that always arises through high volume traffic, we see it on our roads.

I feel I am entitled to be concerned because as a resident in East London I am directly underneath the fly path of several airports.

1:3200 chance of getting killed by satellite

A satellite is expected to crush onto earth anywhere on the planet because it has lost its orbit. I just wonder whether this ratio is higher than the one that calculates how likely it is that we are killed by an aeroplane, as lately quite a few of them have fallen from the skies as well.

The satellite’s weight is 5-tonnes, that is something to consider and I expect many will be holding their heads up high on the 24 September, which is next week Saturday in our time-zone.  Debris is expected over an area of at least 250 – 310 miles. That is definitely something to keep our mind of other worries isn’t it.

We will be told 2 hours before the satellite lands where the predicted landing zone is. Lets all keep our eyes on the BBC then on Saturday next week. I shall.

Last autumn for airmiles

I totally welcome the move to scrap the air miles scheme. It does make air travel more expensive and therefore prevents at least some people from flying. For environmental reasons I love this very much indeed. Also it is ethically wrong in my view that the purchase of shopping over loyalty cards helps people to get some services or goods cheaper than others. That puts an unethical pressure on people to use loyalty cards, therefore impeding on their right to privacy.

In any case, I am very unhappy about the data collection over loyalty cards that is taking place. There is hardly anything theses days that people still can do without being observed or listened to. Our shopping habits are carefully monitored. Everything is measured. If you have a water meter they even monitor the amount of water coming in and going out of the flat. They see exactly what electricity and gas you use and of course your voice and other communications are also listened to.

But the need for this has been brought on by constantly increasing social fluctuation and people do not know each other any longer face to face. It is travel that increasingly makes our lives more dangerous as it can transport illegal items, dangerous people and disease around the world and it contributes considerably to earth warming by polluting the air.

People that do want to keep in touch can find other ways to do so and maybe they consider moving location more carefully if visiting will become more expensive later on. Hopefully this stop on the air miles scheme indicates a more local conscience for us from our local politicians and businesses.

BA reports record loss

What we can understand now, and indeed are invited to include into our thoughts, is that BA made a record loss of £531 million pounds. This stands against the strike ballots of the Unite Union that ask for better pay and generally employment conditions, and those rights were asserted just yesterday by the High Court.

I wrote about the worker’s conflict at BA previously and talked about the pros and cons of strike action, and outright condemned it also.  It is a questions of whether workers want to be loyal to one employer or want to preserve their lifestyle and work for any employer as long as the lifestyle fits and even if the employer has to go bankrupt and worker’s future will be uncertain.

I am wondering what will happen now when those record losses are available for anyone to see, whether the Unite union will achieve another positive ballot for strike or whether workers agree a restraint. I said before Unions should take balance sheets and profit and loss figures into consideration when they opt for strike or before they even consider it.

If  Unite workers continue to insist on strike that would mean the death of BA and also jeopardise their recent amalgamation with Iberia, the Spanish airline. I am always sad if I see one traditional quality company go to the dogs because we all ike to trust in the services they offer and feel safe using them.

Of course the recent High Court ruling reiterates the basic Human Right that one can associate and opt for strike action and on a national service level customers can always opt to use other airlines. The Union’s decision to strike on not enough pay, simply gives the message that unions don’t give a toss about traditional national pride in quality service delivery but that they have a truly objective stance on their own comforts of living rather than give support to local companies, such tactics may further erode the UK  economy and drive business elsewhere.

Judgment Day for Unite

Thursday, 20th May, 2010 At 9:30
C1/2010/1197 British Airways Plc -v- Unite The Union. Application of Defendant for permission to appeal.
This is one of the more interesting judgments to be announced tomorrow.  Knowing that the court is mainly interested in business as much as they can and the court would always find reasons if possible against applicant’s that wish to challenge business, then I would bet that Unite is going to lose that application. I am sure we’ll see the result on the BBC website or it will be uploaded onto the Bailii website as well.

The rules are there to be broken and the courts break them as much as it suits the intention to deliver justice, with the favouring of the side that is most beneficial for the country, is one way to say it I suppose, in a matter like this.  Yet this application is a sign that the unions are getting more sophisticated in their approach instead of holding wildcat and solidarity strikes.  I think the timing is rather unlucky just as the new government has been sworn in.

Here are the reasons for Unite to make the Application for permission to appeal. The BBC gives another look  over the pre-judgment decisions here.

Apart from the political, business and legal considerations, living below the flight path, we noticed how nice and quiet it was when flights stopped due to the ash clouds from the Iceland volcano. So on a personal basis, I do not mind if they strike because I do not fly a lot in any case and I am not getting paid to promote BA anymore.  (I used to advertise them on my commercial website).

Wonder whether we are going to see this taken to the ECHR? But have now heard that the court has overturned the previous decision 2:1 and allowed the appeal. That is a remarkable stance to take, just as Britain has become Conservative. That is of course one way to reduce pollution by allowing unions to strike on airways.

Labour’s Heathrow plans untenable

A big thanks to High Court judge Robert Carnwath for his common sense and very much-needed decision. Needed because this Labour government is unable to plan ahead without falling foul of some very important environmental concerns. Source.

Boris’s idea of a Thames Estuary airport becomes more real each day. Labour’s argument that plans exist since 2003 and “have ” stuck to regardless of environmental concerns shows that they have no serious plans to even inherit the “stop earth warming” message.

It’s practical decisions like this, that proof to all of us that Labour can’t be trusted. Boris knew what he was talking about when he suggested the Thames Estuary airport and its more than suspicious that Labour would need a court decision to make them see sense in environmental terms. That they even don’t care about the health risks to local residents shows how little regard they have for people.

US is changing

I don’t know what’s worst this morning, to read that there is now a souring of relations of the US with Jewish settlers or that the American Union Teamsters wants to support the Unite Union in the BA strike action.

That is the first time that I have heard of an American Union supporting an UK strike. It shows that the new American President Obama was not the best choice to lead America. If we now see the undermining of Euro-American business by international solidarity of Unions what hope have we got to get our economy back on track. Should we fear that now also our local transport businesses have to surrender to the same fate as our local manufacturing industries that have all been exported to Asian countries? Have we got anything left that works here in the Western World?

I think that this proposal of an American Union supporting a British dispute is very bad news for business and industry in the western world in general.

I did not like it when I read that Obama had cancelled European / American business meetings a few months ago and now we see the first result of this, we see that the Unions are rising instead.

This coincides with the UK deficit being at its worst lowest level in 17 months. I was also very concerned when I read that Obama had cancelled the EU – US summit. I have however read many articles that warn of a rise of Marxism in the USA and that is a far cry from the US we know from the 20th century especially under Hoover.

It may seem odd to many that I, as a Conservative, am in support of the European Union but in the light of the latest developments in the US, I think I was right to have that stance.  We need to develop and work on the business side of  Europe as otherwise we will be swamped by what the US tried to fight during the last century.

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