Archive for October, 2008
Apparently Ford are to start placing Parental Controls on cars. Instead of everyone having identical keys, Ford will use its microchip technology to identify which driver is using the car. Parents will be able to have the car limit itself to 80mph for the kids, and optionally sound an alarm if it is driven over 55, 65 or 75mph according to parental choice. Seat belt alarms will be set according to driver (which begs the question of why the parents should get away with driving without a seat belt, but hey).
My thoughts on this are really very simple: isn’t this just a sign Ford are desperate to key parents putting their kids behind the wheel, maintaining parent’s sense of security about the idea, instead of the responsible option of refusing to let their kids become car-dependant in the first place? Parents should be worrying about handing on a habitable planet, not good driving practices!
I went to a workshop at a conference not long ago during which a person first asked us what we thought of the statement “Make Poverty History”, and then asked us to think through the consequences of trying to run a campaign entitled “Make Wealth History”. I was reminded of this whilst reading a story based on some completely unhelpful statistics. (more…)
Right, really need to clear some of the posting back-log I’ve accrued recently. This should mean daily postings all this week. First up, a return to national ID cards, something this government seems utterly hell-bent on implementing. And just because those pesky majority-member Brits won’t do it, what the hell, lets pick a minority, such as, erm, foreigners. (more…)
Had a situation recently when various older people were practically trying to make me out to be a terrorist. One of the opinion’s expressed was that older people didn’t fight the 2nd World War so young people could go round dragging the country to grinding halt (sic). Trying to figure out a way of dealing with this not-uncommon arguement got me thinking. (more…)
It’s taken three days to write this article/blog post, and I’ve only just succeeded in getting something I feel happy with, but anyhow, I’d like lots of comments on this one so I can actually rewrite it into something much better explained. It was, in part, inspired by the experience of attending “Worship Central” when it came to York last week, and thinking through Tim Hughes and Al Gordon’s talk (focused on worship) and how it spoken very directly to my life as an activist. Please note, many of the concepts in this post (and some of the language) is going to make no sense to anyone not already a Christian. (more…)
So, the top dog of the Met police is gone. No, I haven’t been living in a timewarp (I accept its 2 weeks since the event itself), I just haven’t had enough time to blog about it. But it is a momentous moment, and presents both positive and negative situations. Positive because, no matter how much spin is spun, its clear why he’s going, negative, because in some ways it undermines the separation between the police and specific political motives, potentially paving the way for future Mayors to cherry pick a police chief to their liking once elected.
Doesn’t time fly? Hardly seems a year since I was writing posts about the Environment, the 2007 theme, but today’s theme is Poverty, another topic on which I already occasionally write. In fact, I’ve been saving up an idea for today ever since I heard that the theme had been announced: our relationship with “the poor”. (And, yes, I know B.A.D was yesterday, I just didn’t finish this in time!) (more…)
Whilst reading an article on the threat of electricity black-outs recently, I had a sort of vision of future weather forcasts including, as well as the polen index, the sun index, etc. the forcast for availability of electricity. With power more likely to rely on natural sources, like wind and so forth, hence we might be able to predict many of these black-outs in advance. The fact is, if everyone pulls together, we can actually avoid these grid-failures by a means some of us are quite familiar with… (more…)
Have been meaning to write something about the persecution of the Roma in Europe for some time now. I’d like to say I could have come up with a title that wasn’t a horrific, tired-out pun on Roma and roam. But the fact is, our treatment of travellers in Europe is no better now than it ever has been, barring the period when half a million of them perished to the Nazi final solution. In Italy, they have become the subject of mass-fingerprinting and vigilante attacks, in the Czech Republic, there are problems with trying to develop an education system that works for them, and in general, they continue to be the racial group towards whom racism is rarely, if ever, condemned. Two articles from the BBC highlighted some of these issues for me. (more…)
The Guardian is reporting that the EU has passed new emissions regulations that, apart from anything else, ban the building of power plants after 2015 that fail an emissions check so tough any non-carbon-capturing coal power station would fail it. This poses two potential problems, one whereby Kingsnorth is built too soon, and another whereby it isn’t built at all.