'Is there anybody there?' said the Traveller

Submitted by Roy on Sun, 12/03/2006 - 10:16

Is there anybody there?' said the Traveller,
Knocking on the moonlit door;
And his horse in the silence champed the grasses
Of the forest's ferny floor:
And a bird flew up out of the turret,
Above the Traveller's head:
And he smote upon the door again a second time;
'Is there anybody there?' he said.
But no one descended to the Traveller;
No head from the leaf-fringed sill
Leaned over and looked into his grey eyes,
Where he stood perplexed and still.

etc. etc.(Hilaire Belloc, The Listeners)

Well, friends, I suppose you get my drift, no?

Since my subscription went AWOL, I thought, 'Well, this is good time to take a breather from this interminable discourse and reflect on the effectiveness of internet fora' (plural of forum).

Sometimes I wonder, considering some of the more outrageous things I've read, whether we've attracted more than our share of cyber nuts and others who a German cook I once knew would have described as "antialphabeticals". Dictionaries are everywhere, including the 'net, and there's no excuse for not consulting them.

Bend my ear? I think not!

The wars (yes, plural) continue, hapless people continue to be drawn into conflicts of others' making, and many continue to be killed and injured: the environment continues to be fouled by war, industry and bloody-minded selfishness; politicians of major parties continue to collude to exclude alternative social movements-cum-parties that might otherwise have a voice in parliament; the electoral system must be reformed if we are to have representation that reflects the diversity of opinion in the community; the world is running out of fuel and the excrement will hit the proverbial within the next five or so years, according to industry whistleblowers (if you doubt this, go to http://www.abc.net.au/catalyst/stories/s1515141.htm - ABC programme Catalyst 24 November 2005). As supplies run down, governments everywhere will make strategic decisions on who will and will not have access to fuel.Drivers of SUVs will grind to a halt, planes will be grounded, expensive freeways will become known as the "follies" of the 21st century (folly: a building in the form of a castle, temple, etc., built to satisfy a fancy, often of an eccentric kind - Collins Australian Dictionary).

While hybrid cars continue to be trialled and industry boffins continue to work on the development of alternative fuel (e.g. hydrogen fuel cell, see http://www.fuelcells.org/ ), there is no ready alternative for aviation fuel (see, for example, http://www.enviroliteracy.org/article.php/1300.html ), so my friends, it's the end of the world as we know it, but NOT the end of the world (not yet, unless, of course, another nuclear arms race is unleashed, so watch the news on USA-Iran conflict.)

It will take an international effort along the lines of the Manhattan Project (the World War II project that developed the atom bomb) to fast-track development of alternatives to fossil fuel.

Living sustainably is no longer a "lifestyle" choice: it will be forced upon all of us, so start making plans now. How far will you have to travel to work or to buy the basics for survival? And how will you travel?Can you unplug from a dependency system that has been built on the assumption of a limitless supply of fossil fuel?

Dear friends, we can't afford to dally. The world is now faced with the largest species extinction ever known (see ABC News online at http://www.abc.net.au/news/newsitems/200603/s1586235.htm - 'Earth in grip of mass extinction: scientists', By environment reporter Sarah Clarke. Scientists say Earth is experiencing the largest mass extinction in 65 million years ... read on).

The Pope and capitalist entrepreneurs go forth hand-in-hand to subdue the earth, breed and buy! buy! Stupid and selfish! If this continues, it'll be bye-bye!

Be informed, committed and active! Let's sweep the conservatives from office at the next federal elections!

Out they must go! Out with their rotten industrial relations! Out with their rotten fossil-fuel lobbies!Out with their regressive economic policies, and their shameful indigenous and migration/refugee attitudes, their abuse of human rights of refugees through detention, their warmongering and slavish foreign relations ...

All this, and I might add: don't lose your sense of humour. If you lose that, then there is no hope!

"And he smote upon the door again a second time;
'Is there anybody there?' he said." ...

Cheers,
Roy

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Coming fuel crisis

Submitted by Anonymous on Mon, 22/05/2006 - 16:40.

by Roy Garner

Information Clearing House needs sponsors. This site, which ranges across the media coverage of the Bush Administration's (and the rest of the world's) destructive and costly intervention/invasion/occupation of Iraq, is sustained by the efforts of one person.

In his latest posting, Tom Feeley asks subscribers: I need your help to offset the costs associated with site hosting and bandwidth usage. If you find this site informative, please help by clicking here.

Much of the news on this site is not covered by the big media players like FoxNews and CNN, or is lost is the wash of competing stories, so this site is an invaluable source for anti-war activists and researchers who question the wisdom and challenge the unbridled power of politicians in the sway of powerful vested interests and fundamentalist ideologues who profit from the so-called "war on terrorism".

Behind the hypocrisy of those responsible for this grief is a struggle to dominate resources, especially the dwindling reserves of fossil fuel. The irony of this is that warfare waged by the most powerful nation has accelerated the depletion of this unrenewable resource. Who could forget the environmental devastation of the burning oil wells in Kuwait at the end of the first Gulf war? You can read about this on many websites.

One chosen at random from Google has a photo with this caption: "An Iraqi tank rests near a series of oil well fires in northern Kuwait during the 1991 Persian Gulf War. Hundreds of fires burned out of control, casting a pall of toxic smoke over Kuwait before firefighting companies, mostly from the United States, extinguished the last fire months later. AP/WIDE WORLD PHOTOS."
Read about the Gulf war at Wikipedia.
Catalyst on ABC TV (Australia) recently screened an expose of the parlous state of the world's oil supplies. The programme interviewed industry whistleblowers, who predict a worldwide crisis within five years, as alternative fuel development and research has not progressed far enough to meet the world's voracious appetite for fuel. They predict a 20-year gap, during which time the international community will be challenged to fast-track development of these non-nuclear alternatives. It will take a response on the scale of the Manhattan Project, which developed the A-bomb during the Second World War, if we are to find a solution to this need, upon which the lives of millions will depend. You can read a transcript of the programme, the Real Oil Crisis, in the ABC Catalyst archive

One challenge will be to develop an alternative aviation fuel, because at present there is none. This single fact will see governments prioritising who can use aviation fuel (the military, politicians, the extremely wealthy). Without an alternative, international travel, and all who work in associated industries, will be severely affected, and tens of thousands will lose their jobs. Air freight and air mail will become impossibly expensive. A simple budget holiday overseas will become an expensive, if not near-impossible, privilege.

It won't be a matter of "Stop the world! I want to get off!", because, in a very real sense, the world will stop, or at least slow down.

There will be no rest for dedicated activists working for an environmentally sustainable alternative to the dominant economic interests predicated on fossil fuel.

Information Clearing House; Coming fuel crisis

Submitted by Anonymous on Sun, 21/05/2006 - 14:01.

rrgarner at bigpond.net.au
Information Clearing House needs sponsors. This site, which ranges across the media coverage of the Bush Administration's (and the rest of the world's) destructive and costly intervention/invasion/occupation of Iraq, is sustained by the efforts of one person.

In his latest posting, Tom Feeley asks subscribers: I need your help to offset the costs associated with site hosting and bandwidth usage. If you find this site informative please help by clicking here http://www.informationclearinghouse.info/support.htm

Much of the news on this site is not covered by the big media players like FoxNews and CNN, or is lost is the wash of competing stories, so this site is an invaluable source for anti-war activists and researchers who question the wisdom and challenge the unbridled power of politicians in the sway of powerful vested interests and fundamentalist ideologues who profit from the so-called "war on terrorism".

Coming fuel crisis: Behind the hypocrisy of those responsible for this grief is a struggle to dominate resources, especially the dwindling reserves of fossil fuel. The irony of this is that warfare waged by the most powerful nation has accelerated the depletion of this unrenewable resource. Who could forget the environmental devastation of the burning oil wells in Kuwait at the end of the first Gulf war? You can read about this on many websites. One chosen at random from Google has a photo with this caption: "An Iraqi tank rests near a series of oil well fires in northern Kuwait during the 1991 Persian Gulf War. Hundreds of fires burned out of control, casting a pall of toxic smoke over Kuwait before firefighting companies, mostly from the United States, extinguished the last fire months later. AP/WIDE WORLD PHOTOS."
Read about the Gulf war at http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Gulf_War

Catalyst on ABC TV (Australia) recently screened an exposé of the parlous state of the world's oil supplies. The programme interviewed industry whistleblowers, who predict a worldwide crisis within five years, as alternative fuel development and research has not progressed far enough to meet the world's voracious appetite for fuel. They predict a 20-year gap, during which time the international community will be challenged to fast-track development of these alternatives. It will take a response on the scale of the Manhattan Project, which developed the A-bomb during the Second World War, if we are to find a solution to this need, upon which the lives of millions will depend. You can read a transcript of the programme, the Real Oil Crisis, in the ABC Catalyst archive at http://www.abc.net.au/catalyst/stories/s1515141.htm

One challenge will be to develop an alternative aviation fuel, because at present there is none. This single fact will see governments prioritising who can use aviation fuel (the military, politicians, the extremely wealthy). Without an alternative, international travel, and all who work in associated industries, will be severely affected, and tens of thousands will lose their jobs. Air freight and air mail will become impossibly expensive. A simple budget holiday overseas will become an expensive, if not near-impossible, privilege.

It won't be a matter of "Stop the world! I want to get off!" because, in a very real sense, the world will stop, or at least slow down.

There will be no rest for dedicated activists working for an environmentally sustainable alternative to the dominant economic interests predicated on fossil fuel.

First posted on Maillist for Green Activists, Saturday 20 May 2006, , (not affiliated with the Australian Greens Party, though many participants are supporters).

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