Myponga News

The dashboard from my new solar panels tells the story: so much cloud and rain at the end of this past week that the batteries had not even fully recharged each day:

cloud

Not that it mattered much; I was too busy working. However, the sun came out again today, so I was able to Continue reading

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Why Gentlemen Prefer Blondes, and Why Feminism Widens the Divide between Rich and Poor

MarilynThere is a theory about why gentlemen prefer blondes which started as a sort of academic joke. It goes like this. It is much easier to tell whether a blonde woman is healthy or not.  Sick blondes look red and blotchy, whereas illnesses in brunettes, with their darker skin, are harder to spot. But then evolutionists tended to take the theory a bit more seriously; after all, there is indeed an evolutionary advantage for a man in choosing a healthy-looking blonde as a mate, since he can be better assured that she will be able to bear and look after healthy children.

Not all that far up the road from this theory is one about feminism. Before feminism, there was relatively little opportunity really smart men to meet really smart women. They would meet the children of their parents’ friends, of course, and their neighbours. They really wouldn’t meet many women at all at university, because there were very few women at university. If they qualified as young doctors, it would meet nurses, and if they joined an office, they would meet secretaries.  Some nurses and secretaries are smart, but not all.

Now, there is much more opportunity for really smart men to meet really smart women. As fellow students at university. As colleagues in their professional life. And in every Continue reading

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Talking about a Post-Brexit World

2-Francis-Hoareresized-190x285It is now over a year since Francis Hoar’s careful analysis that the UK is not prohibited by European law from now negotiating trade deals with non-EU countries which will take effect in March ’19. But it is an analysis that is becoming more compelling now.

Jean-Claude Juncker has suggested that the UK cannot negotiate these trade deals during the 2 years period under Article 50 (Frans Timmermans is more realistic), but it seems clear that Juncker is wrong about this.

It is true that in the Blue Skies Case (Commission v United Kingdom, Denmark, Sweden, Finland, Belgium, Luxembourg, Austria, Germany), the Court of Justice of the European Union (CJEU) declared illegal an agreement entered into by various EU countries with the USA for co-operation in the area of aviation. But note the summary of that case Continue reading

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Quiz IX

What do the following have in common:

Dr. David Viner, a senior research scientist at the climatic research unit (CRU) of the University of East Anglia, Adam Watson, from the Centre for Ecology and Hydrology in Banchory, Aberdeenshire, Dr. Morris Bender, from NOAA, Steve Running, a wildfire expert, ecologist and forestry professor at the University of Montana, Dr. Felix Landerer of the Max Planck Institute for Meteorology in Hamburg, Germany, Dr. Jerry Mitrovica, professor of geophysics at Harvard University, Prof. Wieslaw Maslowski from Dept. Oceanography of the US Navy , NASA climate scientist Jay Zwally, University of Manitoba Prof. David Barber,  Mark Serreze, director of the NSIDC, Prof. Peter Wadhams, head of the polar ocean physics group at the University of Cambridge (UK), James Hansen, NASA scientist, Noel Brown, director of the New York office of the U.N. Environment Program (UNEP), Janos Bogardi, director of the Institute for Environment and Human Security at the United Nations University in Bonn and the United Nations Environment Program (UNEP), Cristina Tirado, from the Institute of the Environment and Sustainability at UCLA, Dr. John Holdren, director of the Office of Science and Technology Policy for the Obama administration then a professor at U.C. Berkeley

Hint: They are Continue reading

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The Diet’s Work

 

My love is like a bread bread roll

With hardly any butter.

I am no more a cheerful soul,

My cry, a broken mutter. Continue reading

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The Solar Panels on Climate Change

It is seriously worrying that the South Australian government is currently spending $2.6 million of taxpayers money on an advertising campaign about energy. It now says that it is “taking control” of the situation.  That is bad. Very bad.

Electricity here is already 3 times as expensive as in the US, and I have had many power cuts this year. So a bad situation looks like it is going to get much worse before it gets better.

dashboardSo I have installed a solar system on the roof. This is not because I think solar is great. It is because I think the grid supply is really bad, and getting worse. It comes with an internet based dashboard, so I can see what it going on. Right now, for example, my panels are generating 5kW. Most of that is powering the house. Some is charging up the battery which provides power at night. And I am exporting a bit of it to the grid. It is surprisingly compelling, watching the dashboard as the sun comes out and then dives back behind a cloud.

Daft ideas from the State government here Continue reading

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Cryptic

xwI had some trouble with 21 Across yesterday:

Sharp turns in quiet Scottish river valley (6)

Well, “sh” for quiet is easy. And inside that “tart” turning backwards is OK. I had never heard of strath. But it makes sense. Strathclyde. Strathalbyn. It had just never Continue reading

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Electric soup

invertersI have been installing a lot of solar panels on my roof. And in the garage, inverters and battery etc.

This is not because I am a fan of solar power, or this State’s Government’s obsession with renewables. Just the opposite. I think that that obsession will lead to yet more massive increases in mains electricity prices here, and even more power cuts. The home battery bit is expensive, but one needs it, apparently, to maintain power during the power cuts (you would have thought that you could use the electricity coming from the panels. But you can’t.  That has to go into the grid, and if the grid is off, it’s thank you and goodnight.)

Already, my taxes do not lead to much return. I have

  • No mains water (I collect my water from the roof);
  • No rubbish collection (I burn as much as possible);
  • No mail deliveries (I have to collect from the post office in the local township of Myponga);
  • No sewerage (I have my own Envirocycle system);
  • No mains gas (I use bottled gas for cooking on the hob);
  • A very poor telephone line, incapable of carrying an internet connection;
  • Very poor mobile telephone reception (I had to put in an 8 metre high antenna);
  • No road surface (the road I live on is just a strip of dirt).

So, with my own electricity generation, I will be even further off grid. I bake Continue reading

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Our Trust in Barnier

What on earth is the UK Government doing?  Binding itself to pay tribute to the EU for years after Brexit is barking mad.  The worst of all worlds.

Perhaps they have just been worn down by endless remoaning.  But this is a road that leads to never-ending servitude to the EU.  Logic would say that the EU should be paying for access to the UK market, since it sells more to the UK then it buys, not the other way around.  But there is no more logic here than that which drives a battered wife into continuing submission to her abusive husband.

quote-and-that-is-called-paying-the-dane-geld-but-we-ve-proved-it-again-and-again-that-if-rudyard-kipling-15-99-45The UK’s best hope is that the EU is so utterly intransigent in its demands for even more Danegeld as to eventually scupper the negotiations entirely.  Then the UK can just leave, as mandated by the referendum, without paying anything, and without any Continue reading

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We were wrong, say climate scientists

This was in The Times today:

We were wrong — worst effects of climate change can be avoided, say experts

Scientists admit that world is warming more slowly than predicted

The new assessment is good news for small island states, such as Tuvalu, which could be inundated by rising seas if the average temperature rose by more than 1.5C

The worst impacts of climate change can still be avoided, senior scientists have said after revising their previous predictions.

The world has warmed more slowly than had been forecast by computer models, which were “on the hot side” and overstated the impact of emissions, a new study has found….

The study, published in the journal Nature Geoscience… suggests that the world has more time to make the changes.

Michael Grubb, professor of international energy and climate change at University College London and one of the study’s authors, admitted that his past prediction had been wrong…

They could have saved themselves a few lines by simply announcing “Robert Was Right”.

 

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