29 April, 2008

Maybe Call It "Global Climate Change?"

- would that make it clearer to the ostriches?

Some people will go to extraordinary lengths to stick their head in the sand. Especially about things like global warming...

Our previous Prime Minister spent his entire record number of terms in office denying that greenhouse gases existed, that global warming existed, or that we needed to do anything about it. He apparently also thought that petrol companies were fair and honest and didn't need policing, and that the entire Australian population was composed of creatures of the IQ and mentality of sheep and could be lied to over and over without cottoning on...

I'm sad to say that on the latter matter, the Australian masses almost always proved him right...

But for years now one other person has been conducting a one-bigot campaign against global warming activism. He uses his humour email list to conduct a campaign that, if he stopped and really thought about it, would have him heading for the fallout shelter instead of spouting inane little digs.

Here's a quote, about a snowfield in Hohenfels, Germany: "Looks like they don't have any Global Warming either.Mother Nature seems to want to make it perfectly clearwho is in charge and who is full of BS." (BTW Hohenfels means "high rock" or "high cliff" and is a skiing spot I remember from my childhood as being a good snowfield. So he's even baseing this snide sideswipe on on a fallacy.)

All of the last several years he has been posting photos of unseasonally cold weather around the UA and the world and saying "See? No global warming here!"

And in the process, he's been ignoring the one thing that scares intelligent people everywhere and is forcing ever faster changes in our behaviour and abuse of the ecosystem: Life is delicatley balanced, a shift of just a few degrees in either directon will be disastrous.

Also, weather is a closed system with really only one energy input, being the energy from the sun. When we unlock the energy that used to be stored beneath the ground in the form of fossil fuel, we are effectively releasing ancient energy into a delicately balanced system. In addition, we're also disturbing that delicate balance by changing the composition of the atmosphere and the way that the atmosphere retains the energy of the sun.

Therefore, if the weather starts heading for extremes of cold, we had better prepare for the rebound in the other direction. As in, for example, a record drought in Australia, which we have been experiencing for over twenty years and which is affecting the world economy. Want to see global warming in action Herman? Come visit Australia and see what were once viable and productive farmlands fallen into drought-stricken baked mud flats.

Arguing about the semantics of the words "global warming" at a time like this is a bit like fiddling while Rome burns, or wandering around your empire in a brand new suit of nothing.

The rest of us, do something now to halt the changes, do our bit, and we may come out of the "Global Climate Change" with most of us still intact...

25 April, 2008

Coughaesthetic

Oh and here's one from a flu far far away an in the past:

It happened that I was working at Channel Nine in the Store at the time, and I had the flu and a nasty cough. The nice chemist had given me a Chemist's Own Brand (read - "cheapie") orange flavoured cough syrup which I kept on my desk to save the day, but neither it nor Panadol were helping me. In fact, I was so fluffy-headed from the flu that it would take me one to two hours to book in one delivery of stock items.

By the afternoon I'd generally start coming around a bit more and by knock-off time I was usually alert and awake enough to drive myself home. Then came the fateful morning when I arrived at my desk and the bottle was empty. I figured "I'll get one at lunchtime" and I proceeded to plough into the work for the day. And had it all finished by midday.

So at lunchtime, I headed for the chemistand got another bottle of the Wonderful Orange Elixir and sat it on my desk- throat sooooo sore, - took a Panadol and a measure of WOE and settled in to breeze hrough the last bits of outstanding work. - Only - I was back. Back to doing everything in a somnolent state. Back to doing everything in a s-l-o-w somnolent state where I forgot what I wanted to do, generally taking careful note of how fucked up everything was, and then not finding any way to get back in sync again.

Turns out my body doesn't like Codeine very much, and especialy it doesn't like Codeine with Paracetamol. So every day I'd arive pico bello, take my medicine and end up a zombie.
So another thing to watch, codeine snd panadol.

Read your labels, check interactions, and preferably know what makes you react badly.

22 April, 2008

Skinflint Skim Food.

You ma have watched Current Affair last night, and heard about the "adulteration of our milk" with a thing called "permeate." I can honestly say that I have been lucky enough to have milk fresh from a farm, and thus have something to compare supermarket milk to.

I can therefore also say that there IS a difference. You can see that supermarket milk is more transparent ("thinner") than fresh minimally processed dairy milk. No it doesn't taste the same, but then all processing of milk alters the taste from the rich bacteria-laden brew that comes out of a cow's teat. Some of that is actually beneficial.

Adding permeate is just adding back what's left after extracting most of the useful parts of whey, which is in turn wat's left of milk after extracting the most useful parts of milk for making cheese. So yes permeate is a long way down the ladder from milk, and shouldn't be there - but at least it's not going to be any more harmful to your health than milk. And in some cases the thinner milk is actually good, such as in baking.

So really, permeate should go into the bread instead of full cream milk, thus reducing the cost of bre... Hang on, that's right, bread already uses he minimum amount and form of milk possible, adulterated by whatever the bakeries use to stretch the milk as far as possible...

Adulteration of food is nothing new. Frederick Accum was among the most vocal and active of anti-fraud activists, back in the early 1800's no less. He used a then still fairly high tech medium - he published a book - to actually name the merchants and manufacturers, and they shut him down with legalities and innuendo. Today, you still notice manufacturers shutting down sites where the public are encouraged to name and shame, and more importantly, you still notice that adulteration of food is taking place, just that the handling of it takes a different form.

In Accum's time, he noted with some grim glee that each of the primary foodstuff and pharmacy manufacturers were poisoning one another in a circular spiral of karma and bad digestion. He didn't need to specifically note however that this was also true of the general consumer too, the person whom all these adulterations eventually filtered down to, en masse.

Today we find that as each manufacturer uses some technique to stretch their ingredients, we lose once. Then because most of those ingredients in their turn come from a source that has already diluted or adulteratd these basic building blocks, we're losing out in a geometric progesssion...

But times have changed.

Where in Accum's day it was a case of slip in whatever you could and bank on the public's ignorance to not recognise poison in their food when they encountered it, our time is a time of disclosure.

Nowadays it's a case of slip in whatever you can, disclose as little of the true nature of the additives or find some loophole to allow you to remain within disclosure law as you can, and bank on the public's ignorance to not recognise poison in their food when they encounter it...

In Accum's day, there were as yet few additives. (Which are nowadays produced mostly by laboratory processes from waste products from another manufacture stage.) The reason was that there were then no processing plants able to manage this process. There were none, because the energy that ws needed and that we would soon unlock in the form of electric power from fossil fuels was not yet available, along with the spike in the production of poisonous emissions and greenhouse gases that would march hand in hand with the exploitation of fossil fuels.

In our day, we have added more illnesses and cancers to our repertoire than at any other time in the development of the world, not a mean achievement by any means. And do I think that the increase in additives, onset of pollution and huge increase in the incidence of cancers and other illnesses is all coincidental? What do you think?

Once again, I can never overtstate this enough - manufacturers could not get away with this shit if it wasn't for one very important group - US - the buying public. If we don't use every avenue open to us to bring these greedy companies to heel, they will continue to poison us. It's that simple. Check products carefully. Read labels, and at all times keep yourself aware of the latest deception being practised on us by nitpicking loophole seekers.

This is the price of keeping your own health, and the health of your family and people you care about. Let someone else forge the pioneering work of attempting to assimilate these poisons into the human genome...

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