Don’t Let Our Wall Be A Wall

How stupid, mad, unreasonable can the Americans be?

Something like half of them – the nation is divided about half and half, Democrat/Republican isn’t it? – think it absolutely wrong to have a border wall.

But they have a border wall !

Try to go to America and see what happens.

You need a valid passport and a ‘Non-immigrant Visa. Form D-160’.

That’s a wall. That’s the wall of rule and regulation and bureaucracy and law that surrounds every nation.

And they’ve got the sea. That’s a natural physical barrier. Erecting a physical wall is simply erecting another physical barrier.

They’re actually saying throw away the Non Immigrant Visa and throw away the Passport requirement and dispense with physical barriers.

You can have long arguments about whether or not a country should be without barriers to entry.

But that’s a different argument. Here we have a country WITH barriers. Carefully constructed, well organised, methodically policed barriers.

And half the nation is saying subvert that. Ignore it. Make a nonsense of it.

I can’t see any sense in that. I can’t. To me it is indisputable proof that America has gone, disappeared down a sinkhole.

They don’t just think this: that they should subvert their own laws – but they think it so strongly that they’re willing to paralyze the country rather than widen the debate, talk it over, explore the ramifications.

Kids and Computers

It’s a worry: Kids and Computers.

For they seem to spend too much time on them and too little time anywhere else.

Not all them. But many. I think there’s many parents, educators, think that.

I certainly do.

But I was thinking it was to be expected, really, wasn’t it? And it is merely a manifestation of a natural human truth.

Children are curious about things. Children want to know. Children want to play.

All that’s going on is they want to know what’s in the computer – and they get directed towards games, then they want to know how to play the game, then they want to know how to win, then they want to play.

Something like that.

In their world there’s nothing offers as much stimulation as a computer game. It bombards the senses like nothing else ever has done. Visual images, sounds, intellectual challenges, rewards, dangers – I’m quite sure there’s visceral and chemical changes occur throughout the playing of a game.

There’s nothing else around so conveniently offering all this.

You could argue that a game of football or such would provide much excitement and a bombardment of physical excitations: visual, auditory, tactile. Noises, sights, feelings.

Yes. Too much so, perhaps. Too much danger of discomfort anticipated before the event for most children to want to go there. Too much exertion during the course of it without reward for them to want to remain. Too little after reward for retrospection to make them want to repeat the thing.

A real world game of football is an almost irrevocable commitment, isn’t it?

A computer game can be abandoned at any time.

So the rewards are obviously greater. In the immediate. At that level. Perhaps not in the long run and perhaps not at some elevated level considering the advancement of the organism as a whole, incorporating its social involvement. But at the immediate level of a schoolkid (or adult) sitting at their desk it’s the best thing going. Without a doubt.

So it is perfectly natural and easily understandable.

So what’s the problem? Is there a problem?

I don’t know.

Have to think about it.

Right off the bat it seems obvious that there’s a danger the ‘players’ will attempt to live their whole lives in that unreal ‘reality’. Which just can’t be done.

Don’t have to argue whether it’s good or bad to do so, the fact is it’s not possible.

There seems to be more than just a danger that they’ll be divorced from reality. It seems obvious that’s exactly where they are. And that doesn’t seem good. They’re orphaned. They’re deluded. They’ve lost reality.

That can’t be good, surely?

Or does it not matter? Often quoted is the danger of such ‘players’ segueing into drone pilots sitting in a room far, far from a battle zone and bringing death down on combatants and non-combatants alike with an unemotional total disregard for any humane feelings, considerations.

Perhaps even childishly excited and happy at some successful ‘strike’ as it kills unwarned, unsuspecting people. In fact we’ve seen that in released videos of night time ‘kills’, the ‘pilots’ excitedly and happily remarking on the killings, laughing at the antics of those revealed by the infra red cameras trying pathetically to get away, to hide.

But how real is this danger? Perhaps very unreal. Inasmuch as it will happen alright – it is happening now – but in fact it has always happened, since the dawn of time.

In the old days they didn’t have drones and infra red cameras but they still had people enthusing in the death of others, still had people coldly, calmly and happily arranging mass butcherings of combatants and non combatants alike.

And that, too, is happening right now. Alongside the more sophisticated stuff.

So perhaps there’s something to worry about alright. But it’s not the ‘removal from reality’ of the computer obsessive but the ‘removal from reality’ incipient, apparently, in all people all the time.

A slight deflection in target.

Certainty – or not…

I feel uncertain.

For about the first time in my life.

Completely a new thing for me. And it provides possibly a bit of insight into the conditions some people suffer from.

Perhaps those that are depressed, possibly those that get driven to suicide.

For it’s not good, is it? For me it began with worrying over a problem I couldn’t find an answer to.

A personal problem. Concerning people.

Those are the hardest kind, aren’t they?

Worrying and worrying got nowhere good at all and got somewhere bad instead.

For I began to doubt myself. My own abilities. You can see how easily that might come about: you can’t find an answer therefore you are fallible, just how fallible?

And the answer, being a people thing, is in the direction of a human good. A ‘good’. Trying to find good answers for people issues. Segues into the realm of ‘good’ and ‘bad’ very easily, good and evil even.

So you (I) quickly begin to nurture thoughts, questions concerning one’s own innate goodness or perhaps badness.

And then again can find no certain answers. For there are no certain answers to those questions are there? No one is wholly good or wholly bad. In fact no thing is objectively ‘good’ or ‘bad’. All is relative.

The next step is where I started: Uncertainty. Not sure not only of what to do – that’s merely indecision; one could be a quite certain and positive person still indecisive about a particular choice – but uncertain of one’s ability to make a choice, to identify possibly choices, of not being the hidden ‘fly in the ointment’.

Doubting the self.

I doubt myself. Never ever did that before.

Don’t even really know what it means but I feel it.

And don’t like it.

But don’t know what to do about it.

I’m not certain.

Stand Up The Real Me

One time in my past I was in a classroom having nasty exchanges with another student and I responded to something he said with something like: ‘Well I don’t give a fuck.’

Not very nice, eh?

I wouldn’t do that nowadays. I don’t think I would.

But it is still within me.

So you could see this nice polite, urbane, well mannered, well spoken person going about and perhaps think he’s very nice, very acceptable, ‘good’.

But really it’d be me with that nastiness within me. Still capable of that nastiness. Still capable of coming out with a remark like that given the appropriate provocation.

When I first thought of this I imagined how horrified ‘polite’ and well mannered society would be at such as I.

And felt a tad sad that I was forever cut off from such good people.

Because for sure it is within me forever.

But then I remembered the doings of the politest of society since the dawn of time. I refer to the aristocracy, of course.

It is in the courts of Kings and Queens and Emperors that we find the purest expression of good manners and ‘good breeding’ isn’t it? So much so that it has become almost axiomatic that good breeding and good manners go together.

It is amongst the Kings and Queens, the Princes and the Princesses that we find the best, the highest manifestation of ‘culture’ in the social sense.

So much that their example spreads outwards first to the courtiers and then the next rank and so on….

But who are they, these people, these ‘aristocrats’ these mentors of good behaviour and exemplars of good breeding? They are villains and thieves of the first water in the first instance. Leading armies to attack, take and plunder. Aren’t they? Weren’t they?

And then in the following decades, centuries, they and their descendants manifest all kinds of evil whilst manoeuvring to maintain or expand their positions, their wealth, their power.

We’ve got a vast body of history and literature prompted by that history to attest to this.

Hmm. So what’s the point? I don’t know. Maybe that all is not what it seems? Maybe that we’re lost in a mythical understanding of reality? Maybe…. I don’t know..

Proof the USA is going insane

Look at this.  A man – an intelligent and sensible man according to what we can ascertain right now about what he says, what he’s done – says he loves being what he is and he’s vilified, attacked, reviled and marked for persecution.

His persecutors are illogical, unreasonable, contradictory in what they claim to do and what they do, violent, hysterical, rabble rousing…  it goes on.

Sometimes it just all dies

Sometimes everything suddenly turns to dust, doesn’t it?

Or perhaps not even dust.  Hollowness.  Nothingness.

And why not?  Everything is hollowness, we’re told,  everything is nothingness.

Aha.  But feelings.  Emotion.  Love, hate, happiness, etc…

In the absence of any tangible reality they exist, don’t they?  And we have some control over them.  We can literally manufacture happiness, love, interest, fascination, preoccupation, to some extent at least.

Which kinda brings it all back to life when we do that, doesn’t it?

What Is Brexit About?

Well I just listened to ‘the latest on Brexit’ and I’m still no wiser.
No wiser about any specifics of what they’re arguing about.
Just what are the issues on the ‘deal’ that cause the lockup, that are the hub of the problem?
All I’ve heard any discussion on – well not ‘discussion’ but ‘mention of’ – is the Northern Ireland border thing.
It’s like the issues are of no importance. To us poor clod proles.
But my understanding was that the groundswell of demand for a Brexit was caused by a clearly perceived need to regain British sovereignty.
That the British people felt that the unelected administrators in Europe were telling the British what to do in altogether too many ways.
Now that’s a specific.
You’d think that the way to talk to the populace (and observers such as I) would be with reference to this issue and similar, wouldn’t you?
Say to the people ‘we can’t get a deal because they won’t allow us to decide this or that for ourselves’ or say ‘you don’t need a Brexit because we can do this for ourselves without needing one’.
Wouldn’t you?
It’s like it’s a black box. We’re not allowed to look inside.
We don’t know what they’re arguing about.
Do they? Do the British?
Perhaps this is all my fault. I don’t sit in front of the t.v. all day and I don’t buy newspapers.
I rely on radio national, a couple of t.v. news (sbs and abc) and web fora.
But it certainly is clear to me from that position, in this position, that there’s absolutely no specifics presented at all. None.
A whole major furore about apparently, nothing.

Need Action on Dryer Soils and Sudden Floods.

Just listened to Hamish talking with a man about flooding changing because of warmer climate.
These experts aren’t very good at getting to the point in a way we can understand are they?
But his message seems clearly to be that:
. We’ve already had 0.9 degrees of warming.
. They expect 3 degrees by 2100.
and, regarding flooding:
. Rainfall events are getting more dramatic: more large sudden falls.
. The soils are drying out more because of warming.
. So small and medium rainfalls are absorbed into the dry so soils and ‘normal’ flooding decreases because of it.
. Also ‘normal’ dam filling decreases because of lack of normal surface runoff.
. So everywhere gets dryer and our dams empty.
. But extreme rainfalls still cannot be absorbed by the soils even though they are dryer and that gives rise to sudden large floods.
. So a dryer agricultural scene and water starved population because of empty dams.
That’s it.
Now that’s, surely, a clear situation requiring deliberate analysis and study and steps taken nation wide to deal with it?

Climate Change ‘Little Emitters’

Posted this on RN Facebook.   I don’t know why I keep doing that.  Must be for the audience.  But it’d be tiny, tiny and not worth worrying about. Bigger than here, though, which is really a private place.
Anyway some guy talking about Climate Change and the recent figures that indicate targets haven’t been met.
So I said:
They talk climate change again this morning. Two interesting sentences I reckon:
‘not doing enough to slow down climate change’
‘that’s a good point except any country could say the same except major countries it’s all little countries 1% here, 1% there’
1. Makes it very clear that the aim is only to ‘slow down’. There’s no suggestion of stopping or reversing. None. That’s sensible for that’s clearly the truth. But not normally seen to be the truth when agitators carry on about reducing emissions in order to ‘prevent’ or ‘stop’ or ‘take action’ re climate change.
So if we’re only hoping to slow it down just how much unslowed are we expecting to happen?
Obviously some. Obviously some is going to happen.
So right: get busy and prepare.
Get busy and prepare! That’s what should be being said everywhere. Massive preparation is required, possibly. Massive physical works maybe and massive administrative works.
Currently what’s being done? Nothing. That I know of. What do you know of?
Question 2.
He presents this sentence as a motive for getting busy doing what we can to cripple our nation in the interests of reducing emissions.
But in fact it is clearly a half truth on the one hand (at best) and a motive for giving up and relying on adjusting to the forecast future on the other hand.
A half truth because it clearly is NOT a 100% made up of 100 ‘little’ nations, little emitters. When in 2016 the top five emitters emitted 18 million Kilotons out of a total of nearly 36 million kilotons for the whole world.
That’s 50%. So there’s only half of the globe comprised of ‘little’ 1% emitters and of course even that’s an uneven list amongst them.
One way of looking at this is that more than half of the total emissions are completely untouchable – because made by the ‘big’ countries who aren’t going to do anything about it. So that makes it even more hopeless even trying.
And then again the list of ‘little’ emitters makes up the rest of the struggling world and the smaller the emissions the more that country needs to make those emissions we could say as a generality.
They can’t afford to do anything else. So there’s buckley’s chance of expecting to find them doing anything else.
Just as India can’t afford to do anything else. India represents something like a quarter of the world’s population and they’re poor. Most of the world is poor.
They can’t afford to do anything but what they’re doing.
The major part of the emissions are from the rich: the USA and increasingly China, let us say half of China on the one hand and from the poor on the other: India and the other half of China.
That’s virtually immutable.
So his sentence when looked at directs us to find something else to do: Get ready. Expect change and quantify and qualify what it will be and prepare for it.

Nauru NOT necessary.

I posted this on Radio National’s Facebook site this morning after hearing Fran Kelly interviewing this Dr.
She kept on saying to him ‘Do you accept that politicians have a right to have some say in who comes to this country?’
I paraphrase but that’s about it.    She was confronting him, effectively, with a choice.  She juxtaposed an obvious right with an obvious wrong with the implication that the one supposed you must have the other.
So I said:
Don’t like the way Fran Kelly put the questions to Dr David Isaacs this morning regarding Nauru.
She makes it a question between politicians having no say over who comes to this country on the one hand and Nauru on the other.
That’s very false. Very improper.
It is a question of whether politicians or anyone else has any right to torture and torment people on any pretext at all. On whether anyone has any right to contravene International Human Rights and so on.
That’s what it is a question about.
It is not ‘this situation: Nauru – or nothing’.
Putting the question in this improper way is actually seeking permission to continue torment and torture.
Perhaps not in context with Fran Kelly but the question is widely put in just that way in other places. I’d actually expect Fran Kelly to acknowledge that, point it out and argue against it.
At bottom it is clearly illegal, improper, inhuman and unnecessary.
They are arguing that it is necessary. In fact. That’s their secret argument. Not that illegal immigrants or refugees should be imprisoned but that they SHOULD be imprisoned without trial or sentence, indefinitely and be subject to lack of medical facilities etc., etc.
And they argue this because they are contending that an awful and horrifying situation must be SEEN to exist or the deterrent to people smuggling will not exist.
That’s their argument which of course they’ll never boldly, plainly, clearly put. But that’s it. And that’s what is the hidden implication of Fran putting the question that way.
And it is phony and false. There’s other ways.