Friday, April 28, 2006


Riding a motorbike through the countryside is one way to enjoy it but that pleasure has now been just about extinguished in Britain -- by The Natural Environment and Rural Communities Act 2006 (NERCA 2006). One understands that motorbikes should be kept out of SOME environments but the near-total ban now in force in the British countryside seems excessive. Below is an email received from a motorcycling lover of the British countryside who now has just about nowhere legal to go on his rural motorcycle rambles

"Like baying hounds, anti vehicle movements have cajoled DEFRA Ministers, Lords and MP's into extinguishing rights of way to motorised vehicle users using claims of damage, noise intrusion, and turning the countryside into a mud-bath for motors. What utter nonsense!

Britain's countryside is criss-crossed with ancient highways that were bypassed by the developers concrete and tarmac, and remain as a small 5% of un-surfaced Right of Way with vehicular access. Some of these old roads were correctly reclassified as Byways Open to All Traffic - these are true roads, and require the same documentation as any other - as such they give enormous pleasure to those few who take to their ways on two wheels and four. But the landowners intent on capitalising on their estate wealth, the curtain twitching do-gooders of middle England, and the fanatical 'ramblers only' brigade have waged war on a legitimate few thousand, claiming roads conceived for horse and cart were not suitable for motors. Would that some of those people could step back in time to when the horse and cart were king - most roads of such type were virtual quagmires for much of each year. Would they also have the farmer, forester, and works engineers revert to the horse as motive power? No, field, furrow, and forest will still ring to the sound of the chain saw and 200+hp turning five foot wheels to churn the ground.

The passage of some type of vehicle benefits many lanes, and the activities of user group working parties ensure clearer passage for all. There are four times more obstacles encountered on pure footpaths for this very reason. Even DEFRA's independently commissioned report declared the system of byways fit for sustained use - ignored! It didn't suit their previously conceived plan to relieve local authorities the onerous burden of fulfilling their statute duty which had been left unfulfilled since 1968 - to correctly re-classify their Definitive Map and Statement and bring it up to date.

With a mountain of red tape, a few users of such byways (0.25% of the National population), and the squeals of selfish organisations demanding vehicle extermination from the countryside - agriculture, forestry and civil works, the three major contributors to real damage will be allowed to continue, while legitimate and considerate users are denied. Those who indulge in illegal 'off road' activities will be unaffected - just another law to break - so what?

Another nail in the coffin of responsible government. Is "live and let live" so bad? Who's next for the chop - horse riding, fishing, canoeing, hang gliding, mountain biking? If you enjoy the outdoors it could be you!"

Another Note on Global Warming

Post lifted from Cafe Hayek

MIT Professor of Atmospheric Science Richard Lindzen has this to say about global warming. I found the most intriguing paragraph to be this one:

"If the models are correct, global warming reduces the temperature differences between the poles and the equator. When you have less difference in temperature, you have less excitation of extratropical storms, not more. And, in fact, model runs support this conclusion. Alarmists have drawn some support for increased claims of tropical storminess from a casual claim by Sir John Houghton of the U.N.'s Intergovernmental Panel on Climate Change (IPCC) that a warmer world would have more evaporation, with latent heat providing more energy for disturbances. The problem with this is that the ability of evaporation to drive tropical storms relies not only on temperature but humidity as well, and calls for drier, less humid air. Claims for starkly higher temperatures are based upon there being more humidity, not less--hardly a case for more storminess with global warming.
(Hat tip to Vernon Smith.)

I'm not an atmospheric scientist, a climatologist, a meteorologist, or any other kind of hard scientist you care to name. -- (By the way, I'll bet that the vast majority of people who opine on global warming are just like me.) -- but I do know a thing or two about economics and the economics of politics. Regardless of the scientific merits of claims of global warming and claims of humankinds' role (or not) in promoting global warming, it is unscientific in the extreme to assume that government can or will handle whatever problem there is wisely. Simply to assume that, if problem X exists, giving power to government to solve problem X will actually solve problem X, or will do so without creating even worse problems Y and Z, is to ignore history and our scientific knowledge of politics


Comment by Mick Hume in the UK. If you don't know who Ming Campbell is, don't worry -- but "mingis" is how the Scottish name "Menzies" is pronounced

This fashion for ethical politics is a desperate attempt to compensate for the melting away of principles. Politicians who have no distinctive vision of the future are reduced to standing on their personal record of ethical correctness. Instead of a battle between competing worldviews, we are left with a contest to see which party leader has the biggest windmill.

These "I'm a good girl, I am!" gestures are designed to demonstrate that one is a decent person. They are the modern equivalent of the affectations of the genteel mode of living in Victorian times. Ming Campbell has left his Jag in the garage in the way that some might leave the bottle alone for Lent. David Cameron's domestic windmill is the energy equivalent of wearing a charity wristband (and likely to have about as much impact in the real world).

Yet there is something more going on here than mere spin. The message behind the new ethical politics appears to be that it is almost unethical to be human today. Just about everything associated with the progress of humanity from the caves to the 21st century seems to be on the "bad" list. From blue/green Dave Cameron to Newsnight's own "ethical man", we are lectured to do less, give up more, leave a smaller "footprint" on the planet.

Michael Meacher, the former Labour Environment Minister, has described humanity as a "virus" on the Earth. And one prominent environmental writer thinks it is more ethical to be gay than straight, since having children is a crime against the planet. To live, it seems, is to be guilty of stomping on the face of Gaia.

Just asking, but who gave environmentalists a monopoly on the meaning of ethics? Why is the ethical option always to lower expectations, to impose restraints, to bash humanity? From the point of view of a more rational, human-centred morality, it ought to be perfectly ethical to experiment on animals, to build new nuclear power stations, to start a population boom or even (whisper it) to drive a dreaded 4x4. And there should surely be a moral right to reach for your gun any time a politician tries to play the ethical card.

More here


Pesky observations from India

The clamour over climate change the world over notwithstanding, the country's weather agency believes that variation in rain and temperatures over the country being experienced over the years fall within the "natural variability". "We are keeping a watch. We are not denying.... It (the variations) are still under the natural variability," Director General of the India Meteorological Department Dr B Lal told reporters here today. There has been no significant change in terms of temperature and rainfall on year-to-year basis, he said. Monsoon was bad in 2002 while prediction was perfect in 2003. In 2004, there was a little deviation from the predicted rainfall but July rainfall that year was perfect, he said.

Similarly there has been a change in temperature of only 0.4-0.5 degrees. But it has been in pockets - some pockets have undergone cooling, others have undergone warming, he said. "For example, when one enters Delhi from other areas, there is a general feeling of warming, but this is due to population (density)," he said. "Thus, there is no clear cut signal...We are keeping a watch over temperatures," he said.

Lal said there had also been no increase in intensity and frequency of tropical cyclones. Since October 1999, there had not been any super cyclone in the country. Last year there were only five disturbances, of which two became cyclones of marginal value, he said. Scientists in the country have been claiming that evidence of climate change is all too evident and the government should initiate studies in the area.

ZeeNews, 25 April 2006


Many people would like to be kind to others so Leftists exploit that with their nonsense about equality. Most people want a clean, green environment so Greenies exploit that by inventing all sorts of far-fetched threats to the environment. But for both, the real motive is to promote themselves as wiser and better than everyone else, truth regardless.

Global warming has taken the place of Communism as an absurdity that "liberals" will defend to the death regardless of the evidence showing its folly. Evidence never has mattered to real Leftists

Comments? Email me here. My Home Page is here or here. For times when is playing up, there are mirrors of this site here and here.


No comments: