Postcard from COP21

Dear Readers I hope you’re both well. It’s a nice warm sunny day here in Paris, from where the big news is that there’s a significant push to increase the ambition and limit the global temperature rise to 1.5 degrees rather than 2 degrees, which would probably make today’s weather here in Paris illegal. The […]

Thoughts on the train to Paris

Not sure why I’m going. The climate talks are happening, but I don’t suppose I’ll be able to get into any of the events. I’m not planning on standing outside demonstrating either, and I think demonstrations are banned here anyway. The people inside know there are people who care about climate change. They also know […]

Nuclear energy? An African perspective

Ntogo tells me that at the recent Green conference he attended in Matabeleland there were fisticuffs between the pro- and anti-nuclear factions. The pro-nuclear attendees, led by two Finnish authors, initiated the turmoil by throwing chairs at the Chair, whom they accused of being in the pay of his anti-nuclear overlords, the Bodongo brothers. The […]

Change it climb

Mark Carney, governor of the Bank of England, was pronouncing recently on climate change, as was the Pope. Little-known fact: The Pope prefers his title to be pronounced in the manner of Inspector Clouseau – ie Perp.  (This leads to some confusion amongst American crimefighters, for whom “perp” means perpetrator (of a crime)). Carney opined […]

Greens

What worries me about greens is that when you eat them the flavour that they release and the texture are both icky beyond description. I mean, I’d just as soon eat the spoon.

The fear of genetic modification

Genetic modification is nothing to be afraid of. It’s just like dating. It used to be a pretty hit and miss affair. You’d show up at parties hoping to meet someone single, attractive and attracted to you. You’d invariably be disappointed. But now, with online dating, you can browse a load of profiles, get hooked […]

Evidence and altruism

Evidence is our connection with reality. Without evidence our ideas are just prejudices floating around in a non-existent ether, a bit like Sandra Bullock in Gravity. Evidence is on the outside and has to be accessed. You have to go and get it. You can’t intuit it and it’s not just going to drop down […]

Lessons from Ebola

Outbreak: The Truth About Ebola, BBC TV – 4th June 2015 They reckon it was started by bats. Some children show the camera the tree where they found the bats. That was before people started dying, one of the children said. When people started dying in the village, many of those who could leave did […]

The Bibble: Thank you, Bronze Age

Erich Fromm, in To Have Or To Be?, contrasts the two following works. The first is by Tennyson: Flower in a crannied wall, I pluck you out of the crannies, I hold you here, root and all, in my hand, Little flower—but if I could understand What you are, root and all, and all in […]

How do you talk about climate change?

Should we even be talking about it? People obviously don’t want to talk about it so maybe we should respect their wishes. Why force them to talk about something they don’t want to talk about? Everyone’s in favour of green stuff anyway so what is there to talk about? Climate change is really bad! Who […]