Books and deposits

Many years ago, back in nineteen-mumble-mumble, glass bottles had a deposit paid on them. You got that back when you took the bottles back to be reused. There were few, if any, plastic bottles around at that time. Everything came in glass.

We kids loved it. We could take found bottles to the shop and get a few pennies for sweets. Looking back, it was like a reward for litter-picking. Anyone who discarded a bottle, as long as it didn’t break, was funding our sugar habit.The environment was kept clear of bottles and we got free sweets. Everyone’s a winner.

Then came the terrible day of the ‘no deposit – no return’ bottle. It was moulded into the glass so there was no way to get anything on them. Bottles accumulated because nobody had any incentive to collect them any more.

Then came the plastic bottles. Again, no deposit, no return. Worthless, once empty. Some glass ones were good for beer making but the plastic ones, well they were no use at all.

So recycling began. We were to wash out all that glass and plastic and pay the council to take it away so they could sell it to recyclers. It was a great con. Here, the council doesn’t collect glass any more. We are expected to take it to the bottle banks and not put it in general rubbish. The nearest bottle bank is 3 miles away… needless to say, glass recycling doesn’t happen as often as it should.

I have a plan for the accumulated empty bottles. I’m going to try setting them up in the woods with the necks in different directions so no matter which way the wind blows there will always be a ‘woooo’ sound out there. They’ll gradually fill with rain, which will evaporate in warm weather, so the tone of  the ‘woooo’ will change over time and vary depending on the levels of water in each bottle. I’d call it an art installation. I suppose many would call it ‘that damn freak and his lunatic ideas’ but art is often misunderstood.

Recycling hasn’t worked. All the crap is shipped to China and Africa for recycling and the overflow gets dumped into rivers and then into the sea. China and Africa get the blame for this while we pretend to be all clean and holy. The truth is, it’s our crap plastic that’s coming down those African and Chinese rivers.

China is getting sick of being sent contaminated and generally crap stuff for recycling so are clamping down on what they’ll accept. No more of the shitty stuff.

Recyclers are complaining that the councils sell them crappy stuff. Councils complain that people aren’t washing out the plastics etc before putting them in the recycle bins.

The ones at the end of the line are at fault. These are the people who make no money from the recycling game and who actually pay to have theirs taken away. But they are the ones at fault.

On that basis it’s never going to work. Not while those at the end of the line are expected to not only work for free, but to pay for the privilege. That won’t change.

It was therefore good to see the return of deposit-paid bottles. Some are calling it a tax. It isn’t. It’s a deposit. Basically you pay a retainer to have the bottle and if you bring back the empty bottle, you get that retainer back.

If you just throw the bottle out of your car window or drop it in the street, someone else will collect it and get the deposit money. We can look forward to a return to volunteer litter collectors who turn that litter into sweets.

It would be good to see this applied to glass bottles too but one thing at a time, eh? Besides, glass is not a big deal in the environment. Chuck a bottle into a river and it will soon sink to the bottom. The river will gradually wear it down back into the sand it came from. No toxins, no floating around getting tangled up with marine life, just a gradually eroding bottle.

I’ve seen the plastic bottle deposit in action in Denmark. Other European countries use it too. It does need a good network of the machines that accept the bottles. The machine checks the barcode to make sure it’s not an imported bottle (it’ll spit those back at you). If it’s a legit bottle, the machine shreds it. It doesn’t give cash, it gives a voucher to use in the shop. Well no problem, you’d have used some cash in the shop anyway and not giving cash means junkies can’t load up with bottles to get a fix.

It also means there’s no purpose in printing fake barcodes for a load of imported bottles. Oh, it happens  😉  but only on a small scale – one or two that someone brought back from a holiday. There’s no point in organised crime getting involved, it’s pennies per bottle so once you take off paying for the printed barcodes, paying someone to print them, paying patsies to take them to the machine, there’s nothing left. Besides, it’s all in vouchers.so no cash. You can sell the vouchers at a fraction under face value, sure, but you’ll be lucky to make a penny a bottle. And you have to ship in a load at a time from somewhere that doesn’t have the deposit. No, the crims won’t be interested.

Of course, if the idiots in charge ramp up the deposit enough, it could then become of interest to the Mafia…

It’s a good idea. I’m all for it. The deposit is not a tax, it’s entirely refundable on the return of the bottle just like in the old days. Rather than pay the council to take away our recycling and earn money on it, we get a refund on the used plastic. It will work better than the present system.

As for the vouchers, well, we used to spend the deposits in the shop where we took back the bottles anyway. Vouchers or cash, makes no difference to me. As long as the vouchers aren’t banned from use on baccy and booze, which would be a silly but predictable move on the part of our lunatic government.

Even sillier but impossible to rule out – you’d take back ten Coke bottles and can’t use the voucher to buy Coke. Oh I can well believe the dickheads we have in charge now are capable of making a rule like that.

If the vouchers turn out to be only good for salad and vegetables, I might add plastic bottles to my glass-bottle ‘woooo’ machine.

Or maybe retry my old attempts at melting them down into bricks for garden use.

***

Books –

Underdog Anthology 5 is a definite. There are more than enough stories to make it a ‘go’ but it can always take a few more. Deadline is midnight GMT on the 1st April and if you’re a few hours late, I’ll still consider it. It’s Easterish timed but not Easter themed. This one is the one filling the gap between Christmas and Halloween and I think I’ll keep it that way. The Spring non-themed anthology.

Price rises at the end of this month will not apply to the anthologies because the authors are paid in advance, there are no royalties, and the prices are as low as I can make them. None of the anthologies have made break-even, possibly because I keep giving them away, but that is not what they are for. They are advertising for Leg Iron Books and its authors.They might take a decade to reach break even, if ever, it doesn’t matter.

The price rises will also not apply to books by me. The only ones I have to increase are the ones I pay royalties on – the novels and single author story collections. They won’t go up by a lot but I need to pay my authors more than they get now. They aren’t going to be keen to send me more books if they get a pittance every quarter, and I don’t want to lose any of them just yet.

I only want to lose an author when they get an offer from a big publisher. That’s the point of this venture. I don’t want to be a big publisher, I don’t want to be rich, I don’t want to be in the 40% tax bracket. I’ve been in it twice and it was horrible both times because I don’t want to succeed for half pay. I’d like to make enough to live on, eventually, and see the Leg Iron Books authors make it into the big time. I am not the big time. I’m a step on the way, I hope.

I have been staying up far too late working on Lee Bidgood’s ‘You’ll Be Fine’ because it’s a compelling read. A complex story, tightly written, where even the most apparently irrelevant detail is woven in to a logically bizarre tale. And it has an orange Lada. I actually once worked with someone who had an orange Lada and he took a lot of stick for it. It was a uniquely revolting vehicle.

I hope to finish my so-far trivial edits by tomorrow. Then I have my son’s 30th birthday to deal with (yes, I am old enough to look unironed and well slept in) and then the anthology.

Today I was up in the horrible early time when the sun was on entirely the wrong side of the sky and the car was still frozen to the ground. It was day-job stuff, actual microbiology, but it won’t take effect for a while yet. It will not stop the anthology and will not stop Lee Bidgood’s book work. It won’t even affect Longrider’s next one, which is imminent. It just meant that tonight has been a bit of a wipeout because I’m not designed for mornings.

If you have something for Underdog Anthology 5, get it in by midnight on April 1st. There is a +/- day or so tolerance on this deadline, since it’s not specifically linked to a calendar event but a week late is far too late.

The next anthology will be Halloween. If you have a good scary one, you might want to save it for that.

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Please sir, can I have a business?

The confectionery industry is preparing for the next phase of the anti-sugar Puritan onslaught. What a waste of time and money.

They have keeled over on the sugar tax rubbish and are now trying to get ready for a ban on advertising. They are doing this by throwing money at packaging so their brand will be recognised when (not, as the article optimistically says. ‘if’) advertising of anything containing sugar is banned.

Total, complete, utter, waste of time and money. The Template is in action here. Once advertising is banned it’ll be plain packaging next. All that brand recognition is wasted money. There will be no brand. Sweets will be sold in olive green packs with the sweet name in 10 point Times New Roman and with pictures of Bella Emberg’s somewhat rounded figure, Shane MacGowan’s teeth, and heart attack victim actors taking up at least half the pack. Why spend money on a brand that will be forgotten in less than one generation? Confectionery companies, you are, basically, fucked. And you brought it on yourselves.

You could have taken the BrewDog approach. You could have responded as Buckfast (Glasgee’s Finest) did when told they were irresponsible for mixing alcohol and caffeine in their tonic wine (basically, ‘see you pal, you’re gettin’ it, so y’are, and meanwhile fuck off’). No, you did the Oliver Twist (it’s not a dance, you uneducated morons of modern youth, it’s a book from the old days of actual books they used to teach us in schools in the times when education made you smarter rather than compliant) .

You confectionery companies stood in your rags and held up your bowl and said ‘Please, Mr. Unelected Gobshite, can we have a business?’

Unelected Gobshite said no. And you rolled over to get your tummies tickled. ‘Sad’ is far too small a word. You think of yourselves as powerful businessmen but honestly, inside that expensive tailored suit, is there anything at all? Is it just full of smug money-love? Is there not a trace of the courage and conviction of the entrepreneurs of old? It seems not. Empty suits. Stuffed with cash soon to be sucked away by the Puritans you pander to.

The flipside of course is the silly Left argument that business controls government. Really? These cowering piles of weasel shit can’t stand up to stomping self-important arseholes, never mind actually-elected lawmakers. When Government ministers cave to these simpering woodlice then we had better think long and hard at the next election. Maybe next time we should elect someone a bit further up the food chain. Perhaps a wasp would be a good option.

 

You know, I don’t really have a dog in this fight. To paraphrase the old rhyme:

First they came for the smokers,
and I’m a smoker,
and nobody spoke out when they came for me and they still don’t,
so frankly, bollocks to the rest of you.

You face a future where every shop front is olive drab green with warnings and graphic made up gore all over it. Even fruit has sugar in it so that will be sprayed drab too. You think they are going to stop with sweets? You are honestly pitiful if you believe that.

Did you think they would stop with booze?

Did you think they would stop with tobacco?

Did you vapers think you had got away? Oh your attempts to ally with the haters was so funny. We still-smokers are still laughing at that and a few of you are still doing it. Keeps us entertained.

It never stops and never will.

Because when they came for me and nobody spoke out for me, when they came for my smoking and drinking and food choices, you Puritan-lovers supported it all. Because of you, it will not stop. You did this. Revel in it. Enjoy hating me and dehumanising me. I’ve grown used to it. You’re on the list too. How will you deal with it? It’s easy but I’m not telling you. Remember, I was the first line of the rhyme. You bastards in the end lines are on your own.

When they come for you, don’t you dare ask me to speak out for you. I will not.

You can only stop it by stopping it all. Leave one thing for them to latch on to and it all starts again. Defund all of it. ALL of it, or learn to live in an olive drab world where you live exactly as directed.

Let’s play a game.

Live in a world where some people do things you personally don’t like, but you can avoid those people who do those things, or live in a world where there is no choice at all and everything, including things you like, are banned. A world of diversity or a world of grey conformity.

Make your choice.

Your time is short.

The face of Death

It’s going to be a popular look if Public Health England get their way.

As the definition of obesity gets ever narrower, to the point where you’ll soon be classed as obese if the medics can’t check for broken bones by holding you up to a light, so the evil of Public Health expands its war on all living things by forcing us towards photosynthesis as our only means of nutrition.

I’m surprised they haven’t tried that yet. Maybe it comes next. ‘Eat a Vegan diet and you’ll absorb enough chlorophyll so that soon you won’t need to eat at all’. I hope they don’t get upset at me for revealing their 2020 dietary plan too soon.

So far, they only want you to restrict your calorie intake to somewhere close to anorexia. It’s a slow death, but they’ll accelerate it later, I’m sure. When we all look like Death I’ll have the last laugh – I already have a black hooded robe and a scythe.

How am I supposed to survive on 1600 calories a day? That’s not even one bottle of whisky! In Scotland’s winter you can shiver away 1600 calories a day. I’ve never actually counted my calorie intake but it’s a lot higher than the currently recommended 2500 a day – and I’m not getting fat. I’m out every other day chopping wood for the fire and in summer, I’ll burn off a few thousand just cutting the lawns. That’s before I even start on the plant beds and the nettles in the woods. Which is what the scythe was originally for.

I’ll also have to rebuild a wall in spring. Part of the wall between Lawn 4 and Greenhouse 2 collapsed. Six feet tall and made of granite blocks. There are still piles of leaves on one of the driveways and the other has been on-and-off a glacier this winter. There are fruit trees to prune and other trees to trim. And I’ll need to rebuild the wood supply for next winter. I’ve run it down a bit this year.

If I pay any attention at all to this 1600 calories bollocks I’ll look like those photos of the Holocaust by next summer. So I have no intention of paying any attention at all to any of it.

That won’t surprise anyone. I’ve paid no attention to the five-a-week veggie thing nor the 21 units a day alcohol ‘limit’ and the antismokers might as well shout at my fallen wall. I hear they have now reduced their alcohol intake limit. I haven’t.

But then, they don’t expect anyone to pay attention to this new nonsense. That’s not what it’s for. As Christopher Snowdon observes…

The idea of having ‘limits’ for individual meals is entirely new and I suspect that there is an agenda at work here. The 400-600-600 ‘rule’ will allow PHE and its army of scolds to name and shame every restaurant portion, takeaway and ready meal that contains more than the government-approved quantity of calories.

It’s a new way into a tax on takeaways. Tax which will fund more nannying and deeper control. Followed by more taxes.

Start learning to photosynthesise. That’s where they’re heading…

November: Popcorn time

Rumour has it that Antifa plan to ‘take over America’ on November 4th. They really think they can do it too. That should be fun to watch.

In the UK, several police farces have been leading up to a bombshell. They have painted their cars for Gay Pride, they have introduced unisex uniforms so transgender recruits don’t ‘feel threatened’ (a police officer who feels threatened by their own uniform is not someone I’d want attending any incident). They have painted their nails and worn women’s shoes to ‘raise awareness’ of something. Mostly they have raised awareness of how derisory they have become. They are chasing trolls on Twitter and ignoring FGM and child rape. They have made videos supporting Islam and threatening ‘Islamophobes’.

Then they drop their bombshell. Because of cuts, they will not police Remembrance Day events on November 11th (or the nearest Sunday). Cuts, eh? They haven’t cut anything ridiculous or laughable, but they have cut an event targeted by poppy burners and, knowing the police won’t be there, by a lot more than that this time.

To their credit, some officers have said they will police the events unpaid. That’s to the individual officers’ credit, the force as a whole is still less respectable than the Keystone Kops.

So there will be a lot of rage in the UK in early November. It does look as if it might have been deliberately stirred up, doesn’t it?

Meanwhile, Catalonia has just declared independence from Spain. What will Spain do? They have already threatened the Catalan government, arrested its leaders, beaten up people who were voting for independence and threatened to remove all autonomy from the region because they dared to speak their minds.

The USA and Germany have weighed in on the side of Spain in this. I haven’t heard the Scottish government’s response, they’re too busy introducing enforced diets on the Scots. Control of every aspect of your life is the SNP’s idea of ‘freedom’. Well you silly fuckers voted for it. (tip of the heavy hat to on Twitter)

Back to Catalonia. The Spanish government has already shown they are quite willing to use extreme force just because the people wanted to vote on independence. Now they have done it – and incidentally they have left the EU in the process with no deal and without paying anything. Tessie May might want to take note.

Early November could see a civil war in Spain. With the USA, Germany and EU on Spain’s side it could be a crushing one. It’s a pity they turned so anti-tourist lately – they could use an army of drunken Glaswegians about now.

Food again: Lancashire has banned the supply of Halal and Kosher meat to schools. Only meat from animals stunned before slaughter is allowed. Finally, UK law takes precedence over religious zealotry. At least in one bit of the country. It remains to be seen whether this decision survives the backlash of the useful idiot SJW’s and the open threats of Islamists.

Then we have the Hilary Clinton glow-in-the-dark scandal. Apparently she sold a lot of American uranium to Russia, who are then free to sell it on to anyone they like, including Iran. Not, on the face of it, a particularly clever move but it made her richer. Money overrides common sense in the Clinton world. That’s cranking up to be a big one in the coming weeks.

If she survives. I mean, it looks like she took a lot of money from some very dodgy people on the promise that when she became President, she’d pay back with favours. There are some very unhappy, very dodgy people out there now. And they don’t just spout insults on Twitter.

Another big one getting under way is the Hollywood pervert conglomeration. The shit is hitting the fan for all those holier-than-thou luvvies who preach morals with their hands up a choirboy’s cassock. More and more is coming out, so to speak, and it’s not going to go away any time soon.

I did note that with a few notable exceptions such as Bill Cosby, all those accused of actress-fondling are white. It’s not so much that it’s a ‘white man thing’ (ask around in Rochdale if you think it is), it has more to do with anyone non-white having a ‘get out of jail free card’. Except that isn’t going so well any more either.

The useful idiots have done their job. Time to call them in and clear the decks. Antifa might be about to wish they had paid more attention to American history, particularly General Custer. The UK could well see a bit of bovver on the streets if the SJWs and their pets try to shut down Remembrance Day. I bet the police suddenly have the funds to send full riot squads out then.

Spain has no peaceful solution to offer Catalonia. They haven’t even tried for a peaceful solution – they went in with black-armoured Robocops to beat up their own people. That doesn’t really encourage them to vote against independence, now does it? The outcome was predictable and now Catalonia has to be stamped on to discourage other regions in other countries from doing the same thing. A major headache for Spain and the EU – which ally will be first to step back when it starts to look like genocide?

Pandering to Muslims is fading out. Lancashire is just the beginning. I told you, Muslims, that one day they wouldn’t need you any more and then they’d cast you aside. Oh I know you won’t go quietly. They knew it too. That’s the point.

The actors and the failed socialists are no use any more. They can be thrown to the wolves now. It all helps to stir up the rage of the public. All over the place. All at once. Nicely timed and very neatly co-ordinated.

The final straw, for me, is the current panic in academia. Again, if any of those ‘intelligent people’ had looked at history, they would have seen that socialism tends to get rid of academics very quickly once they have done their job. And yet they keep doing that same job over and over, expecting different results each time. That is not a definition of intelligence.

It seems they have been outed as a hotbed of Leftie remainers. Well we knew that – where do you think those snowflake student SJWs get their ideas of safe spaces? Social justice ‘warriors’ who need safe spaces and have to have counseling because they heard a different viewpoint. The ground is full of real warriors who are now spinning so fast you could wrap the corpses in copper wire and generate free energy from them. They have even devalued the word ‘warrior’ to where it applies to feeble crybabies.

It all came from their teachers of course. Academia has systematically pushed out anyone with any thoughts to the right of Lenin and they are now mostly remainers because they have disposed of most of those who aren’t. Not because they are intelligent – there were some total fucking idiots running research when I left the academic world in 2005 and it’s got steadily worse since. No, sadly, promotion in academia hasn’t been based on ‘intelligence’ in many departments for a long time.

Well, now the academics are being thrown to the wolves too. As pretty much everyone outside the Socialist bubble has been predicting all along. Because it happens every time.

If they don’t need their pets any more then it must all be coming to a head now. The only thing left is to usher in chaos and then ‘save’ us from it. There’ll be conditions, naturally. And there’ll be a lot fewer of us to impose them on.

The best outcome is that it all fizzles out. Antifa are quickly crushed or better, realise they are going to be and back down. Nobody tries to attack any Remembrance Day parades. Spain comes to an agreement with Catalonia that does not involve armoured thugs in black with batons. The EU, SNP and academia actually have a bit of a think about where all this is heading and decide to talk it out instead.

Yeah, that’s optimistic in the extreme. There’ll be riots and possibly civil war instead.

I remember saying some years ago that rioting plays into the hands of those who want total control. It gives them an excuse to ratchet up control with another new restriction every time. This time it looks like the big one. All in on one last hand. Chaos on a grand scale with everyone fighting everyone else over mostly petty issues as well as a few big ones.

Nobody is united now. Even the previous fragments of society are being fragmented into smaller and smaller groups. There is no, and cannot be any, unified resistance. It’s the ideal time to let the dogs out.

I’m not going to play this game. I’ll watch from the shadows. There’s no point joining any side when all sides are going to lose. There’s no point fighting when the people you are fighting are not really the enemy, even if you think they are.

The real enemy is also watching from the shadows. If it all kicks off in November you’ll see them by Christmas but you might not see them as an enemy. They’ll be the ones who stop the violence – as long as you agree to their terms.

Here’s hoping it’s all a damp squib and they fail this time.

It won’t stop them trying again.

Antifat demands more money

Not a misspelling. The anti-obesity Puritans now say that ‘junk’ food companies have far bigger advertising budgets than they have. Therefore they cannot compete. Well, boo hoo.

First of all, they are not supposed to be competing with private companies. They, like most modern ‘charities’, are funded by Government to give Government new ways to be oppressive, totalitarian bastards.

Secondly, I do not care how much money any private company spends on advertising. It’s not my money, never was and never will be. It’s not being paid for by squeezing taxes out of the rest of us. If you buy their products then you’re adding to their profits but that is entirely your choice.

Nobody is forced to buy any of those products. They do not come round and force-feed you chicken nuggets and canned spaghetti hoops then rifle through your pockets for money. They simply make products available for those who want them. Advertising is their way of telling us all that the product is available. You can ignore ads, you know. Only a gullible idiot would consider advertising as any kind of ‘forcing’.

Antifat, on the other hand, get their money from Government which takes it from us by force. If you don’t hand over a chunk of the money you worked for to a bunch of self-important entitled suits in Wastemonster, they will put you in jail and take the money anyway,

That is why I do not care at all about the £143 million spent by food companies on advertising. They aren’t making me contribute a penny towards it. I care a hell of a lot about the £5.2 million wasted on keeping jumped-up prodnoses in a cushy job because I am forced to contribute to that.

It annoys me immensely and I’m not even overweight. It annoys me because it’s another arm of the Smoker Hate and Booze Hate that I’ve also been forced into contributing to.

There are already strict rules on advertising food ‘to children’ (who have limited to zero means of buying any of it) and yet it’s never enough, is it? As with all the other Puritans we pay for, there’s always another increment, another slice of the salami. And now they will tie in nicely with Tessie Maybe’s long-held desire to control the Internet harder than China does.

All this crap has to go. We’d pay less tax and the NHS would have more funds if all this shit were swept away.

And we could have a bag of chips without watching out for the prodnoses.

Koldskål!

I’ve been trying to radicalize Leggy to the ways of the Danes. This has included teaching him how to say bad words in Danish like “Røv”, “Knep” and more useful stuff like “Øl”. In the food department I started out slow with Danish meatballs (Frikadeller). We then moved up to Grønlangkål with ham and caramelized potatoes. Grønlangkål is kale that has been boiled for a few minutes, then chopped to death and in the end put in a cream heavy white sauce.

2017-04-05 17.29.15

Yesterday we had that one summer day you seem to get in Scotland so my inner Dane came jumping out demanding koldskål. This is a slightly weird Danish dish that is traditionally eaten in the summer. Those warm nights where you don’t feel like playing Gordon Ramsay in the kitchen you can buy a carton of Koldskål, a bag of kammerjunker (a type of small, hard biscuits) and pop it in a bowl and dinner is ready.
Now you may be wondering what the heck is this weird Danish contraption that seems to only show up when it’s warm and has a name that literally means cold bowl? It’s is a cold soup made from buttermilk and other good stuff.

I personally can’t remember a summer at home where we haven’t eaten this stuff at least once. In my quest to tell Leggy about the gloriousness of this this food I wikkied it and apparently in the summer of 2013 Arla sold 3,8 million liters of this stuff. Which is rather impressive when you think about the fact that there’s only about 5,7 million Danes. That’s how popular this is.

Now I somewhat naively figured that since I couldn’t buy the ready made variant here that I’d make it myself. I pulled out my trusty Frøken Jensens kogebog (Miss Jensen’s cookbook a treasure trove of Danish recipes) and thought that looks simple enough. That was until I casually mentioned to Leggy that I’d need to get Ymer at the next shopping trip. Clearly the Scots doesn’t have the same appreciation of the finer nuances of dairy because all I got was a blank look and a “Bless you”. My description of, it’s somewhere between yogurt and A-38 wasn’t much help either. Back to wikki!

Then came challenge number two. The recipe called for pasteurized egg yolks. I cornered an unsuspecting Tesco worker, which these days is getting harder and harder. I suspect I’ve worked up a reputation for being the one who asks for all the weird things they’ve never heard off, much less carry. First was the German nougat and cardamon powder for Christmas biscuits, then potato flour, a non modern can opener and now the pasteurized egg yolk. I could find pasteurized egg whites but no yolks.

In came the lovely RooBeeDoo with a link to a site on how to do it yourself. All you had to do was add lemon juice and water, microwave it and whisk it every once in a while. Sounded simple enough. Of course that went as wrong as it probably could go.

2017-06-21 14.45.37

A call later to the mothership and I was using yogurt instead of ymer and used eggs that I had poured boiling water over in the hopes that I wouldn’t kill Leggy from exploding arse.
So if you want to try it out here’s the recipe

Koldskål

4 pasteurized egg yolks
6 tablespoons of sugar
8 dl Buttermilk
3 dl yogurt
The seeds from one vanilla pod

Whisk the sugar and egg yolk together until fluffy and airy.
Mix in the buttermilk, yogurt and vanilla seeds.
If you want you can even add a bit of lemon zest.
Leave in the fridge for a couple of hours.

Here served with strawberries

2017-06-21 18.02.00

Dominoes

No, it’s not about pizza.

Today I was blocked again on Twitter. It’s what the indoctrinated and the one-track-minded would love to do in real life: just silence any alternative viewpoint. Except… it doesn’t silence anyone. It just stops the blocker’s involvement in the conversation.

So I guess the one who blocked me won’t see this. Should I start to care, I’ll be sure to post an update. I’ve given up on these people. They cannot bear to consider any other view and I long ago tired of talking to walls.

His argument was that cattle produce methane, methane causes global warming, so if people eat less beef there’ll be less cattle and thereby save the planet.

I pointed out that if he wants less cattle then he must also restrict all milk products. I mentioned falling dominoes. Twitter’s limitations did not allow me to elaborate the difference between beef and dairy herds and I doubt he’d be interested anyway. Nor would he be interested in hearing about all the other ruminant species out there. I’m blocked now but well, I’m not involved in education any more. The wilfully ignorant are not my problem. He’ll see it one day, when his personal domino falls, but I’m not here to save him. I’m here to save me, and anyone else who will listen.

My background is in intestinal microbiology. My PhD was on the metabolism in the gut of ruminant animals. So yes, I know what I’m talking about here.

I saw the bandwagon of methane reduction when it started. I worked in labs that jumped on that bandwagon. Some actually believed it would make a difference but most saw a good way to keep the department funded. Sadly, that part of science is necessary: experiments don’t pay for themselves. So, many labs run high-profile projects for funding and do the interesting stuff behind the scenes. You only get to hear about the interesting stuff when it finally does something impressive.

The interesting stuff won’t get any funding as speculation, it has to prove itself first. It does that on the back of bandwagon grants.

Methane is trivial as a greenhouse gas. It was long ago shown that water vapour is the major greenhouse effector but you can’t take exhalations and you can’t tax the sun on the ocean. Therefore, carbon dioxide and methane, extraordinarily tiny components of the air, have to be continuously blamed. There’s no money in steam.

If there was that much methane in the air then every time I lit a cigarette, the flare would be visible in Edinburgh. Methane isn’t inert, there are soil bacteria that use if for growth so it does get used up. It isn’t the final end product, it’s part of a cycle. I worked on methane oxidising bacteria as one of those Interesting Things at the back of another project. Didn’t get too far but I did get a paper out of it.

You cannot isolate one single reaction and claim you have the answer to the global ecosystem. It’s a very complex ecosystem. Change one part of it and all the rest will change to adapt to it. Like rabbits or cane toads in Australia – meddle with an ecosystem and all hell can break loose. One change is like toppling that first domino. It’s hard to stop the chain reaction once it starts.

The Green God’s religion does not recognise dominoes. To them, every scientific result is to be taken in isolation and then applied to the entire planet as Gospel. Unquestionable. ‘The science is settled’. Yeah, well, if it’s unquestionable then it’s not science. It’s a cult. They can’t grasp that.

The also can’t grasp that cows are not the only source of methane – in fact they aren’t even the major source. Mud flats, peat bogs, any swamp anywhere is pumping out methane all the time (I spent three years working on bacteria in estuarine mud flats too). And we won’t even start on what happens when a subsea methane clathrate collapses. The ice worms that live in them are cute though.

Cows don’t produce methane. No mammal does, not directly. Bacteria in their guts produce methane and those bacteria are not specific to the gut. They live in swampy ground and anywhere it’s wet and there’s no or very little oxygen. Including deep water. Cows are a small part of the whole ecosystem and yet they are to be wiped out to save the planet? Total extinction will have no measurable effect on methane production at all.

That’s not why they are being wiped out. They are to be removed so we don’t eat meat. There’s a reason for that.

I remember when butter was suddenly deemed a Terrible Thing. Spread butter on your toast and a heart attack was only hours away. It’s been shown to be bollocks now but it persisted for decades. It coincided with the rise of margarine, then the pretend-butter spreads I refer to as plasticine. Butter, it turns out, is healthier than the synthetics but it took a long time to get the truth past the censors.

Doesn’t matter if the cows are to be eradicated. All we’ll have left are the synthetics. Synthetic milk already exists. It’s horrible but it exists.

Sugar is suddenly evil. Well not really suddenly, it’s been sneered at for a long time. That started with the introduction of artificial sweeteners and has become harsher and more desperate recently as people are rejecting the synthetics in favour of actual sugar.

Today’s new product is insect protein. A whole industry is trying to get off the ground. Faced with the choice, would you pick the burger made from beef or the one made from cockroaches? Yeah, it’s not a hard choice.

So it has to be made a hard choice. Push up the price of meat with ‘greenhouse tax’ and ‘fat tax’ and boost the guilt trips and soon the roachburger is all you can afford. The drones fall for it every time.

I have seen Twitter drones insist that Electrofag is designed by the tobacco companies to keep us smoking. I don’t engage in conversation with that level of stupid, it’s so concentrated it might be contagious. There’s no point.

Electrofag is the biggest threat the tobacco companies have ever faced.  I have several and I like them – although I still like the real ones too. Many have switched away from the real ones to Electrofag, and many new ‘smokers’ became new vapers instead. Isn’t that what those who hate tobacco companies wanted? A big dent in their profits?

It’s not what those who live on other people’s earnings want. Tobacco taxes account for an enormous amount of revenue and Electrofag is denting that too. This should give anti-tobacco governments a problem. Their drones will want to cheer on the demise of tobacco but those at the top can’t allow it to happen. What happens to their funding, their very reason for existence, if we all switch to vaping?

Fortunately the drone mind is easy to manipulate. Just tell them it’s another kind of tobacco, tobacco companies sell it, and all vapers turn into smokers. Those are all total lies, none of them ever happened, but the drones need no evidence. They will believe what they are told and block anyone who tries to tell them anything different.

Twitter is perfect for drone control. They’ll block any reasonable voice and end up talking amongst themselves, just reinforcing the indoctrination they’ve been exposed to until the Cult of the Green God is ready to launch its own jihad on we filthy heretics.

It’s not new. Many cults have used the same techniques to produce blindly-believing followers. This one pretends to use science. Its pronouncements come from academics.

I’ve met an awful lot of academics. Some are at genius level, most are merely clever but some make you wonder how they got in there. I can think of two PhD’s I’ve met who made me wonder if the qualification was really worth anything at all.

Yes, there are idiot academics. They make up for their uselessness by fast-talking and sounding convincing. The cunning ones build a following and the really devious get the press on side. It’s hard to sack someone when the press has built them up to hero status.

Personally I avoid any contact with the press. I talked to one once, was totally misrepresented and had phone calls from genuine scientists wondering what the hell I was up to. Now, I have no comment for any reporter anywhere. Read the journal papers, wait for the data to be published. I’m not talking until that’s done. At the moment I work as a consultant for commercial companies so can’t say much of anything anyway.

I’ve never blocked anyone on Twitter and never been blocked for abusive language. I’ve been blocked twice for agreeing with people, once for sympathising, and a few times for trying to tell them the truth. They don’t want the truth, they want their beliefs.

Let them have their beliefs. I work in science. Everything I do can be questioned and sometimes, those questions reveal to me something I’ve missed. I do not silence dissent. I encourage it. It’s a source of new information. I have no time to play with those who believe ‘the science is settled’.

That’s a religion. I do not have time for religion.