Thursday, September 29, 2022

Gardening challenges

I have been gardening every year for most of my adult life, in Australia and Canada, and water has always been at the center of action. From filling buckets in Deadman’s Creek on my homestead in North Queensland, Australia, irrigating from rivers for cash crops nearby, and using well and rainwater here in the bush in Central Alberta, Canada.

I have used overhead sprinklers and trickle irrigation, progressing towards less water use without diminishing crop yield.

With drier and hotter weather in my neck of the wood at this time, I am currently moving into the use of wicking grow bags for my garden. That means supplying water to the bottom of plant roots, rather than from the top

The availability of modern, durable and cheap plastics has made this a practical proposition, in my case re-using 25 Kg chicken layer feed bags that soak up water when filled with soil and placed in a shallow bath.

Thus, the amount of water used to grow a tomato, for example, is reduced by an order of magnitude in comparison to trickle irrigation where water is wicked away from the row of vegetables by the adjacent dry soil.

Wherever there is a challenge, there is a solution. That is why we are able to snoop around on the planet Mars without even setting foot on the place.

Monday, September 26, 2022

Conscription in Canada?

As the war in Europe moves into a more serious phase with the announced conscription of 300,000 Russians into the armed forces in that country, one may ask, could that happen here in Canada?

That in light of the fact that the Canadian armed forces are only getting half the number of people required enlisting at this time. And that is without direct engagement in a war.

History shows that Canada implemented conscription in both WWI and WWII, causing major divisions within the country by activating the “War Measures Act”.

Our Prince Justin already used its descendant, the “Emergencies Act”, against his political opponents following the Freedom Convoy this year, freezing the bank accounts of “troublemakers” and could be expected to try the same stunt again.

My guess is that he would have to flee the country if he did. (Just too much ammo out there for comfort.)

Besides, under the present ‘leadership’ and following Covid, Canada would likely break up if a conscription drive was implemented. 

Sunday, September 25, 2022

Defending democracy?

The Canadian mainstream, legacy, woke, whatever you want to call them, media are now complaining about the inability of the Canadian armed forces to recruit people to serve as soldiers in the ranks. Reportedly, only half the numbers required are signing up at this time.

Those same reporters seem to forget that they have been instrumental in criticizing and taking down prominent members of the armed forces for misconduct in the sometimes distant past, bringing the culture of the whole enterprise into question.

Add onto that an imperial war in Europe where recruits could easily end up as Putin’s cannon fodder as things escalate out of hand.

As icing on the cake, we have a dysfunctional government in Ottawa busy breaking up Canada, as we know it, while patting themselves on the back as to how good they are.

No wonder people prefer to stay home.

Saturday, September 24, 2022

Vulnerable power grid

Our society has many shortcomings, one of which is the power grid where electric power is generated in centralized locations and distributed over vast areas.

For example, I am told that the power station at the Bennett Dam in British Columbia generates some 30+% of power consumed in BC feeding thousands of power nodes and lines to individual consumers.

A large storm like Fiona now hitting eastern Canada brings home the vulnerability of this system as thousands of consumers will be waiting to get power back to run their freezers and charge their vehicles. (Didn’t think of that one, did ya?)

In fact, in our society, “becoming civilized” means getting increasingly vulnerable to external events that you cannot control, be they natural or man made. Time to get back to basics, meaning preserving food like our ancestors did, among other things.

Friday, September 23, 2022

Weather speculation

Here in the foothills of the Rocky Mountains in Alberta, where I live, two hot and dry summers are now behind us. They stand out from anything I have experienced here in the last 31 years.

I recorded 10 millimeters of rain on August 28 and a few sprinkles over the month of July. We had some good rains in June, giving local farmers reasonable crop yields at this time

Last year, July temperatures held pretty steady around 30 degrees Celsius with a similar pattern in August this year.

Hot and dry. That’s what we in the inland of Turtle Island are experiencing right now. Down stateside they are now in a drought that started some 20 years ago, with no end in sight.

Meanwhile, unprecedented deluges are happening elsewhere in the world, alongside droughts, even in the south of my native Norway where hydropower is getting scarce and expensive for consumers.

What’s next? I think we should expect more of the same and adapt to this new world, as we have done many times in the past and learn to live with less.

Monday, September 12, 2022

Quiet revolution

A kitchen table, the table in a community center or in a cafe may be the place where a new revolution begins. A place where you can interact with another person on many levels without the risk of being demonized by some self appointed ‘experts’ online.

Many meetings over time can create new friendships and cement ideas about where to go next in a struggle against a centralized dictatorial power perpetrated by some very self centered individuals, living in their respective fantasy worlds.

That’s essentially what happened in France, leading up to the French Revolution and the storming of the Bastille on July 14, 1789. We the People have demonstrated time and again, that when push comes to shove, nothing can stop us.

Sunday, September 11, 2022

Political wheel

Last night Pierre Poilievre was elected as the leader of the Conservative Party of Canada with a solid majority of 68% of the vote. He also managed to attract a lot of new members to the party, based on his pre-election rhetoric and previous performance on the floor of Canada’s parliament.

He appealed to the sentiments of ordinary Canadians that are sick and tired of Prince Justin’s antics on the world stage and his failure to live up to promises made as Prime Minister of Canada. Add to that a number of scandals involving conflict of interest, meaning that the establishment and the general public have had enough of this man’s poor performance in office.

Poilievre told people what they wanted to hear and received their votes in return. He next task is now to distract them from some of his more ‘extreme’ promises, like firing the Governor of the Bank of Canada who has been accused of gross incompetence by printing money and causing excessive inflation.

But wait a minute, is this new? Or is it a standard approach used by party political hacks, like Poilievre, forever?

My guess is that Poilievre has been picked by the establishment to replace Prince Justin and that he has been groomed to carry out their agenda a long time ago.

Friday, September 9, 2022

Royal passing

I’m writing this piece to record the passing of Queen Elizabeth II of Britain and Canada, Australia and many other nations yesterday, September 8, 2022.

This article will be engraved onto a glass plate by myself shortly and placed in my own private time-vault, along with a lot of other material.
So, a record that could arguably be preserved for several thousand years is thereby created, as part of my “deep time project”.

The institution of “Royalty” is as old as humankind itself and it unites people under an umbrella of common beliefs. Its success of failure depends on the person that carries the crown and Elizabeth was a master of that art/craft resulting in great esteem for her across the world, as evidenced by all the attention paid to her passing.

The future of monarchies in Britain and other places in the world is uncertain at this time, with Elizabeth’s son Charles now being King Charles III. He is 73 years old and has seen his share of controversies as Prince Charles, including a failed marriage and the tragic death of his ex, Diana, Princess of Wales who was very popular on the world stage.

Do we need Royals to look up to and unite us? To me, that depends on the qualities of the individuals that want to wear a crown, not their ancestry.

Thursday, September 8, 2022

Comparing pandemics

According to reports, the Covid pandemic has claimed somewhere between 5 and 10 million lives world wide in a population of some 7.9 billion. Estimates for the 1918 flu range between 50 and 100 million deaths in a population of 1.8 billion.

The progression of the 1918 flu was also faster, driven by unrestricted movement of troops on and between continents. The conduct of the Great War was a priority, giving the mutating bugs unrestricted access to the civilian population as well.

Only when things got really bad did authorities react with restrictive measures, by which time the brutal spread and death toll had created a considerable degree of herd immunity.

In contrast, public health measures were taken early on in the Covid pandemic across the world slowing down the progress of the virus and its mutants, giving it more time to change its strategy and become more infective and less lethal, serving its own ends for survival and multiplication, to the point where it is still alive and well in September 2022, but causing little concern in the general population.

In that sense, Covid has been more successful than its 1918 brother by ensuring its place in the human population, as long as hosts are available.

We humans should learn from Covid that destroying our own host, Gaia, our living Earth Mother, does not serve OUR interest. 

Tuesday, September 6, 2022

Early election in Alberta?

United Conservative Party leadership contender Danielle Smith says that she will introduce an “Alberta Sovereignty Act” in the legislature as soon as she takes over as Premier of Alberta, if she becomes the new leader of the party.

Meanwhile the establishment is sounding all manner of alarm bells in response to her assertions, including present Premier Jason Kenney and many others within the UCP.

Add to that the fact that Danielle Smith does not have a seat in the legislature at this time. So, a sitting MLA will have to step down to trigger a by-election which Danielle Smith would have to win to claim her seat.

Smith is also promising a free vote in the legislature on the proposed legislation, which she could easily lose, based on sentiments expressed by many to date.

Where would that leave her government? Would she call an early election, or try to govern with an unruly party behind her? Like present Premier Kenney did, and paid the price?

The next legislative election in Alberta has to happen before May 29, 2023. My guess is that it will come long before that deadline.

Land and water

Looking back on human history, the competition for land is unceasing, just like it is among all predatory animals, in relation to their own kin.

That results in conflict; wars in the case of us humans because we are socially organized into groups, greatly enhancing our ability to inflict destruction on others and grab more land for ourselves.

In order for a group to remain cohesive, individuals need to share common values and beliefs, so cultures arise to meet that need.

Problem is, other cultures arise, and the values of groups clash. Mix in competition for land and you get a war, as is happening in Ukraine at this time.

Each party rationalizes its position and justifies the war based on its own beliefs and values. Ultimately the stronger and more enduring party prevails, or the conflict may end up in mutual exhaustion/destruction.

Control of land is essential for any individual/group that wants to survive, but so is fresh water. And it is now crystal clear (pun intended) that fresh water resources across the world are disappearing at an alarming rate, as they are not being replenished by violent storms that are also on the increase.

The consequences of this are daunting because it lays the groundwork for more human conflict between “haves“ and “have nots”.

Most people here in North America are taking the availability of fresh water for granted and are only now beginning to understand that they have been living a myth.

There is only one long term solution: Drastically changed living habits.
The alternative is Mutually Assured Destruction (MAD).

Monday, September 5, 2022

Representative democracy

The problem with this system is that the wrong people tend to percolate to the top and make a lot of bad decisions on behalf of us all.

Would you like the pilot of the Boeing 747 that you are about to board to be selected based on his/her hairstyle or ability to make you laugh or cry?

I don’t think so. Yet we do it all the time in regards to the politicians that are entrusted with the reigns of our nations.

“Der Fuhrer”, Adolf Hitler is a very good case in point. He used to be a bum in Vienna in his young days, but showed great courage as a message runner on the Western Front during WWI.

Due to his oratorical skills and political cunning he ended up in charge of the mighty German armed forces and we all know about the disaster for all of us that followed: A corporal fancying himself to be a general.

The list goes on and on with our own Prince Justin here in Canada who used to be an arts teacher before entering politics, helped by the money and power of his late father, Pierre Trudeau’s supporters.

He has bungled the job ever since and created major divisions in Canadian society, mostly due to an inflated ego.

Real leaders have to emerge and prove themselves as they move up into positions of responsibility, rather than being picked at random based on the work of propaganda machines.

That way we don’t get disc jockeys flying airplanes.

Sunday, September 4, 2022

Ukraine, now Taiwan

In the lead up to the Russian invasion of Ukraine, Western leaders simply ignored all manner of warnings from Russia in regards to Ukraine’s application for membership in NATO. A predictable outcome followed.

A similar play is now underway between the Western Empire (US and its allies, including Canada) and China where China is being provoked to respond with force to what is perceived by them to be an incursion into their territory.

It is being done deliberately by powerbrokers within the Western Empire, using geriatric politicians like Joe Biden/Nancy Pelosi as tools with no regard for the rest of us, or our kids and grandkids, who will become the victims of this megalomaniacal madness.

Next step: Russia and China will form an alliance to deal with Western Empire politics, not unlike the axis formed by Germany, Italy and Japan during WWII.

Also bear in mind that China has a lot of internal problems with its Covid response and a collapsing real estate market. An external war could be very convenient for the leadership of that totalitarian state.

Our system is broken, just as was predicted by George Orwell (Eric Blair) in his novel “1984”.

Friday, September 2, 2022


We live in an unstable and dangerous world. The institutions created to serve our needs are becoming increasingly self serving, not unlike the medieval churches, preying on people and amassing property and wealth.

Our latest predators occupy cyber space and carefully monitor our physical and mental habits with a view to exploiting them for their own benefit.

They also try to create communities centred around themselves in cyberspace so that we may further serve their interests, while leaving us friendless and lonely.

It seems that the universe is geared towards predation, at all levels, from the microbial and up.

We have now arrived at a place where real action is needed to defend ourselves and the answer is as old as our species is: Re-establish tested and true ways of surviving by supporting each other physically and mentally for the good of all. In other words: Tribalizing.

The power of this way of living has been amply demonstrated in Afghanistan by the locals that have beaten back three invasions over the last couple of centuries: By the British, the Soviet and the Western Empires in that order.

The corrupt and self serving nature of these institutions make them vulnerable to counter attacks at strategic times and locations, as has been demonstrated time and time again in Afghanistan. The fight may be long and bloody but those with real life values will ultimately prevail.