The Regular Ramble.

What beautiful weather it’s been so far this weekend. Due to the ANZAC commemorations, the Offspring had Friday off school, so I’m completely unprepared for them to be at home today. It feels like a Monday.

And yet, it is not a Monday! It is a Sunday, and so I’m off outside to plant some pumpkin seeds. Enjoy this week’s links!

I know I lament about my government’s lack of action, foresight and–let’s face it–concern for renewable energy, but I really ache when I read articles like this one. It’s not that I think we should have the monopoly on solar research. And it’s not that I think it’s a waste for companies to be working on renewable energy in other countries, because after all, it’s one planet and if we’re reducing emissions in one place, it’s good for all of us. But it just makes me sad that in a country with sunshine to spare, we’re just not making anywhere near the most of it. I just wonder how long it will take us to regret this?

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Another environmental issue, this one focused on the United States, where scientists believe they are able to now identify whether water contamination is due to fracking chemicals or not. I’ve been following the fracking issue in the US for a while now, and am most disturbed that it is starting to take place here, too. Environmental issues aside, what’s been most interesting and concerning is the way the law appears to favour companies over landholders with regards to land rights.

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As a lover of languages, I was intrigued by this story about the Maidu tribe in California, who, rather than insisting that their language be preserved, are reluctant to do so. Having something die out seems to antithetical to our nature–extinction is, after all, usually a cause for sadness or alarm–but I can empathise with the reasons that the Maidu want that chapter in their culture’s history to close. Yet language is so much a part of cultural identity. Will this decision be one which is regretted, further in the future?

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Finally, a little satire for you. I confess I’ve not read the book, but I do find Brand amusing and perceptive, if not always in line with my own views. Whatever your thoughts about the comedian, however, this article highlights how we might be wise to be more critical of our own prejudices and expectations, before we begin to critique others.

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