End of month time-warp post–30-31 July, [add year here]


This morning at Cafe Yum Yum, West Wollongong. I was reading about these two:


BRITAIN’S Conservative Prime Minister, David Cameron, has personally congratulated Julia Gillard on her carbon tax policy in a letter penned from the desk of 10 Downing Street.

In a clear embarrassment to the Opposition Leader, Tony Abbott, and his Coalition – who have vehemently opposed any price on carbon – Mr Cameron described the federal Labor government’s move on climate change as "bold" and "ambitious".

Mr Cameron said he was convinced climate change was one of the "most pressing threats to [a nation’s] prosperity and security".

"I have always been clear that in order to tackle it [climate change] effectively, all major economies will need to take robust action to curb their emissions and put their economies on a more sustainable, low-carbon footing," he said.

The Tory Prime Minister – who, like Ms Gillard, leads a minority government cobbled-together in a coalition of unlikely and ideologically contrasted political allies – reiterated his stance that the world’s largest economies had a responsibility to address climate change.

"Your announcement sends a strong and clear signal that Australia is determined to make its contribution to addressing this challenge," he said. "It will add momentum to those, in both the developed and developing world, who are serious about dealing with this urgent threat."…

It so happens that one year ago I posted this:

2010 Oz letter editor: disingenuous gatekeeper

Take today’s two on climate change. Such undistinguished and pathetic contributions to a pseudo-debate!

THE worldwide average temperature for 2009 was the warmest on record and 0.68C above the 20th century average ("Warming unmistakable — and worse here", 30/7).

But a more detailed reading of the US National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration’s State of the Climate Report shows that the northern hemisphere made a significantly greater contribution to this figure.

The report also includes a section on greenhouse gases that acknowledges CO2 makes a contribution to the greenhouse effect, without qualifying the extent.

We should conclude that even though the world is warmer than the 20th century average, the rise is unlikely to be outside the normal range of variation over the long term.

It would be premature to attempt to reduce CO2 until a much clearer understanding of the other climate contributors are determined.

Peter Clark, Mount Gambier, SA

AS London diarist John Evelyn wrote during the winter of 1683-84 at the depth of the Little Ice Age: "Conditions were terrible with men and cattle perishing and the seas locked with ice such that no vessels could stir out or come in. The fowls fish and birds and exotic plants and greens were universally perishing. Food and fuel were exceptionally dear and coal smoke hung so thickly that one could scarcely see across the street and one could scarcely breathe".

Who in their right mind is decrying the progressive warming since the 17th century?

William Kininmonth, Kew, Vic

Take Bill first. Of course no-one is decrying the progressive warming since the 17th century. That is the strawest of straw men! I find it hard to believe such guff is worth printing. But I guess any crap he cares to write passes muster inThe Oz, given his distinct lack of objectivity on the subject….


2010 on the photoblog


2009: More on Indonesian terrorist bombing

See also Not again!

1. From Tikno in Kalimantan: Fatwa against terrorist

Dear readers, I create this post because I heard many terrorism issues that tend to be associated with Islam as religion. But through this post I want to say that it is NOT TRUE. If you say that it is personal responsibility, then I’ll say yes. I know some of you may be asking within the heart "Why you say that?"

Well, here is my explanation:

1) I’m strongly believe that there are still a lot of good Muslim, even far more than you imagine. I live in Indonesia, the country with the largest Muslim population in the world, and I have many Muslim friends here. They (my Muslim friends) are also condemns terrorism action…

And on the photoblog:

shills220709 010

Go back in time over the fold:

2008: Any of you watching Q&A at the moment?

It’s not too bad — but why, why, why are people still trotting out that absolute PIFFLE about the supposed petitions signed allegedly by a zillion scientists who do not support the human impact on the environment, global warming, etc…

When the topic appeared on the same show on 10 July I posted:

the highlight so far has been Andrew Bolt grappling with a REAL SCIENTIST and making a total goose of himself, on the matter of the amount of ice in the world, for example, and what is happening in Antarctica… See also Real Climate on Skeptics. Seems to believe in the so-called Global Warming Petition Project with its much touted “31,072 American scientists have signed this petition.” He quotes this as if it had some real weight. However, see Oregon Institute of Science and Malarkey on the background and the shonkiness of this, and also seeSourcewatch. Andrew Bolt on this one may as well admit to believing in fairies…

For God’s sake!!!

Fortunately there is a very sensible representative of business on the show. Let’s stop debating, she says, and grasp the opportunities this gives us. So true…

On the other hand, I really do think we should have a more sensible attitude to nuclear power, especially given the changes that have happened there in the past ten to twenty years. I do see though some merit in our relying on the resources and infrastructures we already have, suitably modified in the light of climate change… Yes, there is an issue there.

But climate change scepticism? You have to be joking… Flat earthism, that’s all it is now. See also the sidebar on the front page.

And on Ninglun’s Specials

Top poems 1: The amazing web site of Shakespeare’s Sonnets

The amazing web site of Shakespeare’s Sonnets is not hype; it is, in my opinion, one of the most beautiful sites on the Web. I go there for #1 in a new series on Ninglun’s Specials, where I promise not to be too original, but I do want to share some of the great treasures that have given me pleasure for close on sixty years now. Do check the VodPod in the left side bar too, as whenever possible I will add an appropriate video for each post in this series.


That time of year thou mayst in me behold

When yellow leaves, or none, or few, do hang

Upon those boughs which shake against the cold,

Bare ruin’d choirs, where late the sweet birds sang.

In me thou seest the twilight of such day

As after sunset fadeth in the west,

Which by and by black night doth take away,

Death’s second self, that seals up all in rest.

In me thou see’st the glowing of such fire

That on the ashes of his youth doth lie,

As the death-bed whereon it must expire

Consumed with that which it was nourish’d by.

This thou perceivest, which makes thy love more strong,

To love that well which thou must leave ere long.

Oh yes, except in my case Autumn is moving into Winter…


That was taken in Canberra in Autumn this year by Sue, whose WordPress photo blog is well worth visiting.

2007: Thinking about the think tank

Religious language and religious groups cause no end of angst to many folk, and the further they are from our own experience and immediate circle the more angst we are likely to suffer. For example, a nice man named Ben has just left a comment on the Big Archive at the entry Looking for the “gay lobby”, the point of the entry being that the “gay lobby” is essentially a paranoid construct in the minds of people who don’t like gays and lesbians, or suspect them of enormous power and credit them with a unity of purpose they sadly lack. Ben begins and concludes his message thus; I’ll leave you to check, or just guess, the middle:

For the time being, the problem is not that Christ is against gays, but that gays are against Christ. The former problem will come about later, but let’s talk about the latter first…

The Lord is patient and longsuffering, but he has assured all that he has appointed a day in the which he will judge the world in righteousness. Be sure that abomination will be rewarded by shame, everlasting contempt, punishment and destruction, weeping and gnashing of teeth, fire unquenchable, indignation, wrath, tribulation, anguish, eternal fire and the blackness of darkness forever.

That’s “that old time religion” to quite a few out there, especially in the USA, but not only there. I have replied at the comment, if you wish to look. I didn’t argue with him. You can’t. It’s a waste of time.

My point here, however, is different. It would be highly likely that any person in the USA, especially any person in a Christian church, and especially any person in a Baptist church, would have a relative or acquaintance who holds those views. Similarly it could well be pointed out (I think unfairly) that the KKK holds those views.

Now we get to the question of Islam…

2006: a brief note

Lunch at Johnnie’s Fish Cafe

Not with Lord Malcolm and Sirdan today, but with Delenio, who told me about a recent typo I am about to correct… Very pleasant day. Talked of many things, including Master Fu, and wondered about The Rabbit. After that I caught up with The Empress and a few others. Next week is Sirdan’s birthday, and something may be happening then.

2005: Yes, I went to Church

Despite my yobbo neighbours having a drunken party last night that kept me awake until 3 am. A bit of gratuitous ethnic profiling here: I worry most when a new neighbour is a young (Anglo) yobbo with bogan written on his forehead; if the person is East Asian I can usually look forward to peace.

South Sydney Uniting Church was small, only sixteen people, possibly half of them gay. Or lesbian. But a pretty fair range, and I was made feel very welcome. It does not hurt that Vladimir, the minister, is quite a hunk. The values affirmed there were ones I could share in wholeheartedly, and I took part in the eucharist for the first time in over thirty years.

I will be returning.

I was privileged to have a good free and frank talk with Dorothy McRae-McMahon too; she is an absolute sweetie.

Now I am off to lunch with Sirdan.

By the way, for those who don’t know, that Paul Simon song in the last entry is a very funny parody of Bob Dylan… It also evokes the sixties beautifully. I have to say, with respect to the Robert McNamara article that follows, that he is pretty good for a guy in his ninetieth year!