A Time For Prayer

Rudyard Kipling

Rudyard Kipling

In times of war and not before,
God and the soldier we adore.
But in times of peace and all things righted,
God is forgotten and the soldier slighted.

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A Spectre of Meltdown

Turning it off and on again will not fix the problem.

Remain Calm

Timothy Prickett Morgan writes about a couple of the latest significant security threats to computers at The Next Platform. If thinking about computers hurts your brain; avert thine eyes. Else, it discusses and refers to details which I won’t reproduce here so it’s worth a click.

Chip designers’ tricks are back-firing as those tricks can be exploited by user code running on the machine, potentially exposing deeply-held secrets to nefarious types. The user code can be injected into systems by an injudicious click of a mouse button. Continue reading

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Why Wind Farms Suck

Found this paper.

Flow Adjustment Inside and Around Large Finite-Size Wind Farms

In this study, large-eddy simulations are performed to investigate the flow inside and around large finite-size wind farms in conventionally-neutral atmospheric boundary layers. Special emphasis is placed on characterizing the different farm-induced flow regions, including the induction, entrance and development, fully-developed, exit and farm wake regions. The wind farms extend 20 km in the streamwise direction and comprise 36 wind turbine rows arranged in aligned and staggered configurations. Results show that, under weak free-atmosphere stratification (Γ=1 K/km), the flow inside and above both wind farms, and thus the turbine power, do not reach the fully-developed regime even though the farm length is two orders of magnitude larger than the boundary layer height.

Continue reading

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We can see clearly now

Some would rather that you not notice that Terrible Air in India Killed No One


Thanks to Steve Milloy for clearing the air.

EPA claims blue-sky air kills 570,000 Americas per year. Below is a snapshot of recent air quality in India from today’s New York Times. The accompanying article fails to report that this filthy air caused any deaths. So what does that say about EPA’s claim?

In another article:

Nope, PM2.5 from forest fires doesn’t kill anyone, either …

As before, “Scare Pollution,” our California study and much other work and reality debunks the notion that PM2.5 kills anyone under any conditions. But researchers have even previously looked at whether PM2.5 from forest fires kills. Not surprisingly, the answer is, NO!

The only thing PM2.5 kills is junk scientist credibility.

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We should be grateful.

How the cost of light has fallen by a factor of 500,000

As the BBC recently pointed out, our prehistoric ancestors needed to gather and chop “wood 10 hours a day for six days… [in order to] produce 1,000 lumen hours of light… That is the equivalent of one modern light bulb shining for just 54 minutes, although what you would actually get is many more hours of dim, flickering light instead.”

By 1900, 60 hours of work could provide 10 days of light. The light bulbs would burn 100 times as bright as a candle, steadily, and inodorously. By 1920, 60 hours of work could already pay for 5 months of stable light. By 1990, that increased to 10 years of light. Today? 52 years.

The amount of labor that once bought 54 minutes of light now buys 52 years of light.

That’s real social justice.

Justice compromised by e.g. carbon taxes.

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CO2 is Not a Pollutant

The Worldwide Harmonised Light Vehicle Test Procedure (WLTP) is the new vehicle fuel consumption and emissions testing procedure being adopted in Europe and other places as of next year.

I visited the site designed to educate consumers and other parties and read:

The WLTP laboratory test is used to measure fuel consumption and CO2 emissions from passenger cars, as well as their pollutant emissions. …

[emphasis mine]

Dr Craig Idso talks about how real science that increasing CO2 provides a biospheric bonanza already evident in a global greening since 1982.

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Parliamentary Constipation

For those not familiar with the Constitution of the Commonwealth of Australia may be puzzled about the current distraction of government from its nominal business. The Constitution is the rules under which the Commonwealth operates and the clause that put parliamentarians in a pickle is Section 44(i) which reads:

44. Any person who –

(i.) Is under any acknowledgement of allegiance, obedience, or adherence to a foreign power, or is a subject or a citizen or entitled to the rights or privileges of a subject or citizen of a foreign power: or

…shall be incapable of being chosen or of sitting as a senator or a member of the House of Representatives.

At first glance it appears only to be about citizenship, but read it again slowly and you may notice entitled to the rights or privileges of a subject or citizen of a foreign power. It does not say all the rights, so just one of the rights and privileges available to citizens of a foreign power would disqualify somebody from nominating for or sitting in Parliament. Continue reading

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Freiheit als höchster Wert

Fundstücke zu Hayek. Rezension im Deutschlandfunk. Die Verfassung der Freiheit (ISBN 3161458443)

Freiheit als höchster Wert

Das Buch ist in mancherlei Hinsicht unzeitgemäß, und auch darin liegt sein Reiz. Hayek verzahnt die Perspektive seines Fachs mit der Philosophie und dem Recht, ganz im Gegensatz zur heutigen Praxis der Ökonomie.

Gesellschaftliche Prozesse lassen sich nicht zielsicher steuern

Gesellschaftliche Prozesse lassen sich nicht zielsicher steuern

Es sei zugestanden: Dies ist kein einfaches Werk, die Argumentation ist nicht frei von Widersprüchen. Doch es stecken unendlich viele Denkanstöße darin. Es ist inspirierend, wie sorgsam Hayek um den Begriff der Freiheit ringt, sich mit ihrer präzisen Abgrenzung und Begründung plagt, mit ihrer Bedeutung und den Anforderungen an den Ordnungsrahmen – an die Verfassung – einer Gemeinschaft.

“Bei den technischen Mitteln, die dem Staat zur Verfügung stehen, ist es nicht so sicher, dass (sich die spontanen Kräfte des Wachstums) noch durchsetzen können … Wir sind nicht weit davon entfernt, dass die bewusst organisierten Kräfte der Gesellschaft jene spontanen Kräfte zerstören könnten, die den Fortschritt möglich machten.”

Weiter lesen … im Deutschlandfunk

Weiteres von F.A. Hayek

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A Case for “No”

Marriage shackled to Government.

Australia’s  infinitely wise government is using taxpayers’ money to ask the people if they would agree to change the Marriage Act to permit same-sex marriage. (Shades of The Rise And Rise of Michael Rimmer)

Different source put the proportion of population that would be involved in such marriage at between 0.2% and 20%. In any case; a minority; which is not in itself a case for No.

This case for No addresses the role of government and laws in society. The difference between rights and privilege. And equality under the law. Continue reading

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The Constitution of Liberty

I’ve been reading. F.A. Hayek’s The Constitution of Liberty (ISBN 978-0-415-40424-2).

Not Fred

Not F.A. Hayek

The book had been on the shelf beside my bed for a few years, scarcely read. As during my university days in the late 1970’s to early 1980’s; one cannot gain insight into a book’s contents purely by osmosis.

As I was travelling to the dedication of the Peacekeeping Memorial in Canberra for a few days, I packed the book to study during the idle hours. The book is quite a tome, around 500 pages in total; comprised of the main text in 3 parts filling 340 pages, then copious footnotes and several indexes including a useful “Analytical Table of Contents”.

This is not a book review. The book was first published in 1960 so there ought to be plenty of reviews elsewhere. How can I compete?

Published in 1960, the book seems to be just as applicable now as it may have been in the 1950’s and the decade that launched free men to aspire to walk on the Moon.

F.A. Hayek


Friedrich August von Hayek analyses the concepts of liberty; why liberty is beneficial to individuals and society; where liberty originated; how liberty was established; how liberty is sustained and how it is and can be extinguished. Not having yet studied all of the main text, I’m not yet ready to distil my interpretation.

I will however venture to provide a brief, important  synopsis: Continue reading

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