Comments for http://www.bbc.co.uk/blogs/thereporters/richardblack/2009/06/at_the_international_whaling_c_2.html http://www.bbc.co.uk/blogs/thereporters/richardblack/2009/06/at_the_international_whaling_c_2.html en-gb 30 Mon 26 Jan 2015 07:02:12 GMT+1 A feed of user comments from the page found at http://www.bbc.co.uk/blogs/thereporters/richardblack/2009/06/at_the_international_whaling_c_2.html ghostofsichuan http://www.bbc.co.uk/blogs/thereporters/richardblack/2009/06/at_the_international_whaling_c_2.html?page=97#comment34 Hope does not accomplish much. What I see is individuals taking it upon themselves or small organizations doing things to either lessen thir environmental impact or seek out alternative energies and in some cases leave the grid completely. I don't know if the fate is the same as the communes of the '60's or the beginning of a new direction. Politicians never lead, they wait for new directions to be initiated by the "people" or concensus thereof and then try to rush out front and take credit, mainly to be re-elected. Bureaucrats are under less pressure to change and often oppose change because of established relationships with industries and internal organizational philosophies. In most bureaucracies the industries being regulated insure that they have people appointed within the bureaucracies to do their bidding and influence the direction of any legislation. What is most needed is the restructing of the bureauracies. We have a post-WWII model that is basically disfunctional, they keep busy but get nothing done. Unless the existing relationships can be broken, change in any meaningful sense is doubtful. The complexities of government allow for any side of any issue to be professed, as they like to say in politics.."some of my friends are for it and some of my friends are against it...and I am for my friends." Technology is not a reflection of the progress of mankind, it is simply a reflection of the progress of technology...these two are often confused. Niether China nor India have any incentives to do things differently, neither government would view a catastrophic event killing millions as such a bad thing in the overall conditions in those countries. As with most countries, if the event were in Mumbai or Beijing that would be one thing but if in rural or coastal poor areas, after the fake mourning was completed the event would be forgotten in policy terms. As in the US some emergency legislation would be passed, funds allocated and later everyone would relaize that the legislation was never implemented and very little funds were actually spent.Until citizens are unwilling to accept the dishonesty and unethical behavior of the elected and appointed few nothing significant will change. History records revolutions because leaders are unwilling to change. The idea that governments could sell the right to pollute (cap and trade)and everyone views this as a positive act is a good reflection of a docile public willing to accept whatever crumbs are thrown their way. Remember, it took two atomic bombs before the Japanese politicians would face reality. Thu 09 Jul 2009 15:05:17 GMT+1 manysummits http://www.bbc.co.uk/blogs/thereporters/richardblack/2009/06/at_the_international_whaling_c_2.html?page=94#comment33 We all appear to be well on the way to becoming amateur atmospheric scientists!I see Buzz Aldrin wants a unified push to Mars.http://news.bbc.co.uk/2/hi/programmes/newsnight/8131706.stm----------------- Fri 03 Jul 2009 12:56:43 GMT+1 davblo2 http://www.bbc.co.uk/blogs/thereporters/richardblack/2009/06/at_the_international_whaling_c_2.html?page=91#comment32 timjenvy #32: "I follow all the NASA mission on their site."On the subject of good links, here is one I like, related to NASA but actually at Wisconsin-Madison, "CIMSS".http://cimss.ssec.wisc.edu/goes/rt/viewdata.php?product=gw_all(The drop-down menu with "Latest" allows you to choose earlier times)It shows up to date satellite images of (in this case) the west coast. Starting from bottom right in the "visible" (0.65 um), and then from right to left and bottom to top in infra-red wavelengths getting progressively longer from 3.7 um to 14.7 um. The infra-red images are coloured to show effective temperature. So here you can see how the IR is escaping through the atmosphere and for me (albeit with my possibly naive interpretation) it shows the greenhouse effect in action.I tried to relate the images to the absorption information I found at...http://www.iitap.iastate.edu/gccourse/forcing/images/image7.gifSo as I see it...At 4.4 um the earth looks cold(ish) because IR is blocked by a CO2 absorption peak.At 4.6 um there is a small window between the CO2 peak and a water vapour peak so some IR escapes, and the earth looks a little warmer.After 4.6 um, and on up to 8 um it is water vapour absorbing the IR., and looking cool again.At 9.7 um it's oxygen absorbing.From 10 um to 13 um there is much less absorption and escaping IR makes the earth looks much hotter.From 14 um and upwards, the IR is absorbed by CO2 and water vapour, so the images again looks cold, and at 14.7 um, very cold.Switching between day and night shows different intensities as one would expect, but the absorption pattern remains.As manysummits intimated in #30; it's amazing what you can see on te internet.All the best; davblo2 Fri 03 Jul 2009 10:00:09 GMT+1 TJ http://www.bbc.co.uk/blogs/thereporters/richardblack/2009/06/at_the_international_whaling_c_2.html?page=88#comment31 Manysummits #27: Glad you liked the website. It's one of my favorites. Lots of interesting and well presented info. Pictures especially good.I looked at your links and they are ones I also visit regularly. I follow all the NASA mission on their site.Can't agree with your sentiments about Jim. Having banged him away I hope they throw the keys away. It was the shenanigans of his ilk which included Gore and Moore that switched me to a denier. Not the science.To Davblo2 #28. Appreciated the link. Thanks.To ghostofsichuan #29. Is your pseudonym connected with the volcano in China last year? Seems very apt for the recent few posts mentioning volcanoes. I agree with your drift but think we play a waiting game. There is no way that we can change the present direction. That was laid down on high a while ago and no amount of common sense or facts will put it off track. I believe it will all naturally implode in time and we may as well save our energies and get on with our lives in the mean time. As soon as governments pass these carbon tax bills the focus to push them will decline and the truth will naturally come out as scientist will feel freer to honestly explore their subjects instead of looking for the next bit of funding. There will be a mess to clean up. We will pay of course but I do not see an alternative for us regular folks right now. IMO the time for revolution is not right now. Later.. Fri 03 Jul 2009 03:49:49 GMT+1 manysummits http://www.bbc.co.uk/blogs/thereporters/richardblack/2009/06/at_the_international_whaling_c_2.html?page=85#comment30 To ghostofsichuan #29:Agreed!But do you see any signs of hope?------------------ Fri 03 Jul 2009 01:46:47 GMT+1 manysummits http://www.bbc.co.uk/blogs/thereporters/richardblack/2009/06/at_the_international_whaling_c_2.html?page=82#comment29 To davblo2 #28:Just watched your link of the Russian volcano. Quite the world here on the internet!---------------- Thu 02 Jul 2009 23:16:26 GMT+1 ghostofsichuan http://www.bbc.co.uk/blogs/thereporters/richardblack/2009/06/at_the_international_whaling_c_2.html?page=80#comment28 The game of governmental responding to crisis is almost over because the crisis have gotten bigger. the governments and the bankers and industrialist are busy trying to figure out how they will profit and control any new alternative energies. Although new energy sources provide the opprotunity for individual productions and managment this presents a problem to the large energy producers and governmental tax collections. The current industries take a position of "entitlement" and governments have a mindset that requires "growth" for additional tax revenue. There is no process in place that would support the concept of sustainability. Fundamental structures need to change. Everyone is playing around the edges and that simply will not do. The idea that banks and investment companies could send people letters and say, oh, by the way your account was just diminished by 20 or 30 percent and no riots occured and no bankers were hung in the streets only encourages a repeat performance. In Burma, as in Iran, the people said enough is enough, the governments proceeded with brutal measures and the world stood by and blogged. The business of government is only business. The fundamental structure of the Industrial Revolution remains, only the working conditions are a little better in some countries. Political parties have weeded out those who do not support the staus quo so it does not matter who wins. Thu 02 Jul 2009 19:03:38 GMT+1 davblo2 http://www.bbc.co.uk/blogs/thereporters/richardblack/2009/06/at_the_international_whaling_c_2.html?page=77#comment27 manysummits, timjenvy: "Great website (spaceweather dot com). I didn't know about that erupting volcano"Have you seen the photo sequence on youtube?http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=LESBxErmZ-UIt's well worth a look.All the best; davblo2 Thu 02 Jul 2009 15:38:37 GMT+1 manysummits http://www.bbc.co.uk/blogs/thereporters/richardblack/2009/06/at_the_international_whaling_c_2.html?page=74#comment26 To timjenvey #26:Sounds like a nice trip!I've driven past Lassen, but never been up on top.Great website (spaceweather dot com). I didn't know about that erupting volcano, but yesterday morning I watched the sunrise - a spectacular purple on the low cumulus clouds, and I thought - "That looks volcanic", as I'd just reread my article on Volcanic Twilights last week.- "Volcanic Twilights", Astronomy Magazine, August 1992, by Alister Ling.There is a 'noctilucent' section also:- http://www.spaceweather.com/nlcs/gallery2009_page8.htm?PHPSESSID=ffo3li4khpdv424v21loap4tj4If you are interested, I posted a couple of links on polar mesospheric clouds in #24.With your description of the "Bay of Plenty" and the dolphins in New Zealand, it sounds like you are worried about our immediate future.The carbon tax you referred to in your post #25 is exactly what James Hansen has warned about, including his 2009 testimony before Congress.Speaking of Jim, I understand he managed to get himself arrested recently protesting a coal project.As the Frech are wont to say:"C'est La Vie"- Manysummits, Calgary - Thu 02 Jul 2009 10:43:06 GMT+1 TJ http://www.bbc.co.uk/blogs/thereporters/richardblack/2009/06/at_the_international_whaling_c_2.html?page=71#comment25 To Manysummits #24:Talking clouds. Did you see the reports of MAMMATUS clouds over NY? http://www.spaceweather.com/archive.php?view=1&day=27&month=06&year=2009Now they to really look something to behold.Just got back from exploring some of the Cascade Mountains, Columbia River, and parts of the Great Basin desert. I can report that all is fairly quiet on the volcanic front although Mount Lassen seemed a bit antsy belching mud and rotten egg smells at a few turns in the road. Great view from the top to witness the results of real awesome natural destructive forces if you havent already been there.Regards from SF Thu 02 Jul 2009 05:26:20 GMT+1 TJ http://www.bbc.co.uk/blogs/thereporters/richardblack/2009/06/at_the_international_whaling_c_2.html?page=68#comment24 My favorite creature is the dolphin. I wrote a few months ago about how I have swam and played with dolphins at my second home in the Bay of Plenty in New Zealand. They remember me and we have a fun time interacting. I just hope that if our current civilization collapses (which it will inevitably do at some point) in my life time I will be able to be there. They will protect me when I go fishing from sharks and other predators and they will know that I will protect them from man to death if needed. They would be part of the survival team which we will build. Although, unfortunately, killing predatory humans would not be a sensible reaction to the problem in the current environment.I think we are too far removed from nature in our current western culture to even understand these questions let alone have an answer for them.OT: Been away for a week or so and I see that the carbon tax is taking shape just as I predicted. When Obama set up his environmental team last year it was obvious what was going to happen and so far right on queue. I do not believe anything will stop this bill from passing (with a pile of pork barrels for those needing encouragement of course). The best tactics now will be those of the Russians when Napoleon attacked. Retreat and let them have their spoil. Then when they think they have victory nature will, as sure as there will be a tomorrow, start to call their bluff and there will be a very messy retreat. Folks will react to these shenanigans to tax and control us and a new world order will emerge. Governments will implode and man will be free again from their yolk. For a while again anyway, cos this sort of thing tends to be cyclic. A bit like the weatherCheers........ Thu 02 Jul 2009 03:56:53 GMT+1 manysummits http://www.bbc.co.uk/blogs/thereporters/richardblack/2009/06/at_the_international_whaling_c_2.html?page=65#comment23 To 'ghostofsichuan' #23: You wrote:"We let our governements tell us how they will spend our money and do not tell them how we would like our money spent."----------------And half of us vote, and half do not.At this point, I'm not sure which half I prefer. Actually, it seems more like 'Simon and Garfunkel' were right when they sang something to the effect:"no matter which way you vote, you lose."And it wasn't just sixties artists voicing this. Thomas Jefferson of the United States wrote that once the revolutionary war was over, people would be disenfranchised, as society in general would lose themselves to the "sole facility of making money."Closer to home, I have seen this first hand, and at the closest quarters.I keep trying to find out if this is an intrinsic part of being homo sapiens sapiens, or if it is an acquired cultural trait. No decision so far.That's why I love science. You explore, and you always win.The science tells us that the threats are large, imminent, and probably closer in time than we have thought.My experience with the public suggests we will move towards the brink until we are looking directly into the abyss before we react.That's what I thought before I was married and had a young son, and so I climbed mountains for seven years, to the near exclusion of all else.Four years later, and after six months of refreshing myself at the BBC blogging well, with ample doses of refereed science papers on the current state of environmental degradation, I see no reason to doubt that I made the right choice eleven years ago, and no reason to believe that my comment about the 'abyss' is invalid.The question then becomes - what to do next, at the personal level.So far - continue to explore - at the moment - "Polar Mesospheric Clouds", which I have observed for the last week, five mornings before sunrise out of seven. They have me worried, but they are fascinating.- http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Polar_mesospheric_clouds- http://www.nasa.gov/mission_pages/aim/index.html- Manysummits, Calgary, at 51 degrees north - This morning: 'Silvery white veil, with golden overtones, and delicate banding and billows, essentially perpendicular to twenty degrees north, horizon to forty degrees altitude.'- Google "observing noctilucent clouds, gadsden" (pdf) Thu 02 Jul 2009 02:34:49 GMT+1 ghostofsichuan http://www.bbc.co.uk/blogs/thereporters/richardblack/2009/06/at_the_international_whaling_c_2.html?page=62#comment22 There are assumptions about democratic govenments that are simply untrue. The ideal is that the will of the people and/or the common weal will be manifested by the elected bodies. What we have seen is that the interest of corporations and the wealthy have more influence with our legislative bodies. Elected officials mainly respond when they think they will no longer be elected and therefore candidates are needed that will profess a different agenda around environmental issues. This also requires that those who support these matters provide the funding for such candidates. If the expectation is that elected officials will do the "right thing", history does not support such views. The science is the science and politics are politics and in these matters and preaching to the choir does not facilitate change. It is not difficult to see that the air and water is being poisoned by industrial waste and pollution with health implications for the human race. In the current economic conditions one could easily make the case that cleaning up the mess would produce more jobs but the influence of the investers and industrialist hold sway with their own vested interest. Until this is a public agenda and rises to the level that elected officials are replaced based on these issues the incrementalism (doing the minimum possible) will continue. Even when a new clean energy source is produced it will take years to be implemented because of these very factors. It is about priorities and accountability. Candidates saying they support this or that environmental issue without being specific and usually not voting that way is a common pattern now. Saying and doing are two different things. Paying someone $30.00 an hour to adress some enviornmental need produces the same as paying someone $30.00 an hour to work in a coal fired electric plant..the economic impact is exactly the same. The only argument againist "Green jobs" is that they don't want to do it because of the impact on existing economies of pollution. We let our governements tell us how they will spend our money and do not tell them how we would like our money spent. We have forgotten that consequences are the greatest modifier for behavior. Wed 01 Jul 2009 19:11:10 GMT+1 costmeabob http://www.bbc.co.uk/blogs/thereporters/richardblack/2009/06/at_the_international_whaling_c_2.html?page=60#comment21 Re: Post #20 by manysummits. My thanks for the correct reference inadvertently omitted.You have me wrong. I am well aware of the probable consequences. It was clear that if CO2 was accummulating (not being absorbed by well understood systems) this must have been due to some other mechanism that perhaps was not as widely understood or accepted, not just increasing emissions.Its always been clear, to me at least, that any Ozone hole would allow increasing exposure to external (solar) radation and consequential temperature increases. We know well that the Pacific and Southern Oceans have been extraordinarily warm for a long time. Some suggested that it was man made warming due ONLY to CO2.At least we know that the warmer water is, it fails to absorb as much CO2 and eventually releases Co2 into the atmosphere.Fix the Ozone layer first (it still doesn't get much press) and the consequential protection that affords the Southern Hemisphere will in time help in dealing with the fight against higher Co2 levels.Trying to fix Co2 without addressing the Ozone layer is just plain foolish. Wed 01 Jul 2009 17:45:23 GMT+1 freddawlanen http://www.bbc.co.uk/blogs/thereporters/richardblack/2009/06/at_the_international_whaling_c_2.html?page=57#comment20 Whaling is morally repugnant to most Westerners nowadays, as is the stoning of adulterers and the beating and burning of 'witches'. All three of these things go on, on a fairly regular basis, in a few parts of the world and are culturally accepted in those regions. Just because these regions beleive it is ok to continue these practices, it doesn't make it right or acceptable to the rest of us and protesting against these things is a moral duty for those of us who believe they are inhuman practices.Equally repugnant (in my eyes at least), is the wanton waste of millions of tons of fish caught in European waters every year because 'quotas' have already been met....Or Brazil selling off rainforest for 'comercial exploitation'....Or the continued lack in clean energy investment by rich countries like us, who have the knowledge and financial resources to be completely free of coal/gas/oil powerstations within a decade.I've no doubt that I could fill a page or two with a list of equally shortsighted (stupid) policies, that continue to be adhered to by Western governments, for reasons that I can only assume boil down to GREED. Wed 01 Jul 2009 16:11:10 GMT+1 manysummits http://www.bbc.co.uk/blogs/thereporters/richardblack/2009/06/at_the_international_whaling_c_2.html?page=54#comment19 Re post #19 by 'costmeabob':The article appears to be:Ozone Hole has Unforeseen Effect on Ocean Carbon Sinkhttp://www.newscientist.com/article/dn17385-ozone-hole-has-unforeseen-effect-on-ocean-carbon-sink.htmlAnd the original reference is :Journal reference: Geophysical Research Letters (DOI: 10.1029/2009GL038227)----------------------------To 'costmeabob':Marine scientists and climatologists have been taking this seriously for decades now, while most of us have been asleep, or more probably 'making money'. The tone of your post suggests you are still unaware of the probable effects of CO2 - that's a shame.- Manysummits, Calgary - Wed 01 Jul 2009 10:32:29 GMT+1 costmeabob http://www.bbc.co.uk/blogs/thereporters/richardblack/2009/06/at_the_international_whaling_c_2.html?page=51#comment18 Richard, I've been following your excellent pieces recently. Guess your having a 'whale' of a time (excuse the pun)? The relevance to this (bad joke) was, feedstocks in the Southern and Pacific Oceans are being depleted, whether through fishing or not. I was wondering why the BBC Science page hasn't yet carried the PACIFIC RESEARCH published in New Scientist last week on the failure of the Oceans to absorb CO2, due to previously misunderstood consequences of the Ozone hole over the Antarctive and the now PROVEN consequential effects on the Ocean CO2 levels and the threat to marine life?Fishing WHales and Dolphins to extinction, is not good. Their total destruction due to damage to the Oceans, through CFC pollution is even more frightening, as it hasn't until now been understood.We need the public, via the BBC, to hear about the potential devastation of marine life and the bigger impact on CO2 levels, directly due to CFC's effect to the Earth's Ozone layer, than any man-made CO2.This is now out in the open, so marine scientists and climatoligists should be taking this far more seriously. Wed 01 Jul 2009 07:29:05 GMT+1 manysummits http://www.bbc.co.uk/blogs/thereporters/richardblack/2009/06/at_the_international_whaling_c_2.html?page=48#comment17 Addendum to Noctilucent/Polar Mesospheric Clouds:"The startling similarity between the PMC structure observed by CIPS and that seen in tropospheric clouds suggests that the mesosphere may share some of the same dynamical processes responsible for weather near Earths surface. If this similarity holds up in further analysis, it introduces an entirely different view of potential mechanisms responsible for PMC formation and variability."http://aim.hamptonu.edu/mission/index.html- Manysummits - Wed 01 Jul 2009 00:00:37 GMT+1 manysummits http://www.bbc.co.uk/blogs/thereporters/richardblack/2009/06/at_the_international_whaling_c_2.html?page=45#comment16 Canada does have a climate change projection for the year 2050/60; similar in style to the map put out by the Hadley Centre of the United Kingdom recently.I just received the information from Environment Canada. (see link below for map):http://atlas.nrcan.gc.ca/site/english/maps/climatechange/scenarios/nationalannualtemp2050/interactivemap_print_small_medium?mapsize=428+380&scale=42051275.911682&mapxy=431453.9620327102+1853447.5411515473&mode=zoomin&layers=-------------On a related topic, here is how the pine beetles are welcoming a combination of climate change and monoculture:- in North America and Alberta:http://news.bbc.co.uk/2/hi/science/nature/8126663.stm----------------- Manysummits, Calgary - PS: On the walk to the bus this morning, I again observed what I believe to be "Noctilucent Clouds", a half hour or so before sunrise. They became invisible about a half hour after sunrise. Just prior to this, high cirrus clouds went pink as the sun caught them, but the noctilucent 'veil' and delicate billows were still visible. According to the Center for Atmospheric Research, these would have been at some 83 to 84 kilometers height, just below the Mesopause. This is my first week observing these clouds, and I am thrilled to be doing this! Tue 30 Jun 2009 23:49:50 GMT+1 ghostofsichuan http://www.bbc.co.uk/blogs/thereporters/richardblack/2009/06/at_the_international_whaling_c_2.html?page=42#comment15 The Japanese are a very traditional people and because of the lack of land suited for agriculture they consume a large amount of fish. This has also made the Japanese one of the healther nations in the world. The diets of the young Japanese is changing and as they eat more fast food and Western type meals the issues around Whaling will disappear in time. This is probably not good for the Japanese but it is the direction they are headed. The Japanese live off of the sea and other than some rouge ships trying to make a quick profit, they understand that the whale population must remain viable. The relationship between humans and animals is different in the East and the West, mainly because the West has not expereinced frequent famine and starvation as has the East. We lit our lamps with whale oil for many years and now seek higher moral ground when we are not dependent on the whales. The West has a habit of using natural things up and then condemn those who pick though the remains. The Japanese first encouters with the West were from seamen washed ashore from Whaling ships. Mon 29 Jun 2009 20:22:30 GMT+1 LarryKealey http://www.bbc.co.uk/blogs/thereporters/richardblack/2009/06/at_the_international_whaling_c_2.html?page=40#comment14 @honestfedup writes:"Actually, using emotion rather than logic is the surest way to follow the road to hell which is paved with well intentions. Those of you who are so self righteous about whaling, killing dolphins, etc. should shut up and mind your own business. Imposing your misguided views on another culture is biased and racist. If you do not desire to hunt, kill, and eat whale meat is your business. How about I impose upon you that you will be required to hunt, kill and eat the same? You are nothing but a bunch of arrogant hypocrites."I respond: I would agree to your assertion that we should "mind our own business". If the Japanese decide to decimate their dolphine and whale populations, it is certainly their business. While the dolphines of Japanese waters (those who do not migrate) are resources belonging to the Japanese people. The fisheries and populations the world over are not the "resources of Japan". They are the resources of many countries, and in the "open ocean" - resources belonging to the world as a whole.While I Do find the activities taking place at "dolphine cove" to be deplorable and undesirable, they do not. And in reality, who am I to be the "moral arbitor" of what is right and wrongfor them. However; when, the mightly fleets of Japanese trawlers (illegally) invade the waters of Africa and rape the natural resources of arguably the poorest nations of the earth - I think I do have a right, and obligation to put Japan in its place - because of their flagrant disregard of laws and treaties which they agreed to.I also suppose that we must all accept that you know about "the road to hell" than the rest of us. hmmmm Mon 29 Jun 2009 18:01:59 GMT+1 LarryKealey http://www.bbc.co.uk/blogs/thereporters/richardblack/2009/06/at_the_international_whaling_c_2.html?page=37#comment13 Richard, thank you for the wonderful, insightful article. It would appear that your article has been successful in evoking emotion and (perhaps) even 'real thought'. Good Show.While, I would disagree with you on many issues related to the environment, actually, really only upon one - I think we could actually find plenty of common ground on most, I certainly agree that this is a horrid example of the stupidity and greed of humankind.Again, thank you for the article, Cheers for that. But, did you have to insert the words "climate change"? Oh yes, forgive me for my momentary lapse - of course you did - it is a requirement that any article on the environment must contain the phrase "climate change" at least once, in order to be published by the BBC... Mon 29 Jun 2009 17:45:01 GMT+1 manysummits http://www.bbc.co.uk/blogs/thereporters/richardblack/2009/06/at_the_international_whaling_c_2.html?page=34#comment12 To kerrymunroe # 12:You wrote:"Culture is often a burden of ignorance.It is often just as bad as consumerism and modern materialism."---------------I agree. I have just finished Antoine de Saint-Exupery's book "Wind, Sand and Stars," in which he looks for what is truly the essence of humankind, rather than our cultures, developed to accomodate time and circumstance.Maybe that's part of it - our adaptability via culture - to accomodate 'time and circumstance'? Part of our essential 'nature'.And what is our time and circumstance today?It seems to me that the 'Mayday Declaration' attempted to present a short description of our "time and circumstance", and that if this were agreed upon as true, a world culture would arise to address it.I think this may be happening, but agonizingly slowly, as information trickles down, with about the same speed as wealth trickles down.So I continue to explore - and have recently found that if you live above or below fifty degrees north (or south), you might just have to look up - and see those noctilucent clouds - which increasingly look like harbingers of global warming.http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Noctilucent_clouds -----------Who knows, maybe a cloud will succeed where rhetoric has failed.- Manysummits - PS: I watched with unfeigned delight as Cloudrunner, our son, learned to ride his bicycle without training wheels yesterday. (four and eight months) Mon 29 Jun 2009 10:47:13 GMT+1 kerrymunroe http://www.bbc.co.uk/blogs/thereporters/richardblack/2009/06/at_the_international_whaling_c_2.html?page=31#comment11 I have two issues with using culture as an excuse.The first is if you are going to say we have been doing hundreds of years and is a part of traditional ways of life, then live that traditional life and only conduct the hunt with traditional means. No motor boats, no nylon nets, floats, no modern weapons. A tradition doesn't make it right. If the Aztec culture was alive today, would society allow daily human sacrifices on the basis of tradition? Culture is often a burden of ignorance.It is often just as bad as consumerism and modern materialism. Mon 29 Jun 2009 01:00:37 GMT+1 davblo2 http://www.bbc.co.uk/blogs/thereporters/richardblack/2009/06/at_the_international_whaling_c_2.html?page=28#comment10 "So when they continued asking him, he lifted up himself, and said unto them, He that is without sin among you, let him first cast a stone at her." From the Bible, John 8:7 Sun 28 Jun 2009 19:16:11 GMT+1 manysummits http://www.bbc.co.uk/blogs/thereporters/richardblack/2009/06/at_the_international_whaling_c_2.html?page=25#comment9 Change of Subject - "Aeronomy", and Noctilucent/Polar Mesospheric Clouds:http://www.nasa.gov/mission_pages/aim/multimedia/first_view.htmlhttp://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Noctilucent_clouds- Manysummits - student 'aeronomist - Sun 28 Jun 2009 19:09:48 GMT+1 manysummits http://www.bbc.co.uk/blogs/thereporters/richardblack/2009/06/at_the_international_whaling_c_2.html?page=22#comment8 Head-Smashed-In Buffalo Jump"Countless thousands of bison were herded over the edge of the 10- to 18-metre-high cliffs, beginning perhaps 5,700 years ago and continuing until the middle of the 19th century."- http://www.pc.gc.ca/eng/progs/spm-whs/itm2/site6.aspx- Manysummits - three hours north of the "Jump" - Sun 28 Jun 2009 18:44:35 GMT+1 davblo2 http://www.bbc.co.uk/blogs/thereporters/richardblack/2009/06/at_the_international_whaling_c_2.html?page=20#comment7 my #6: "...referred to the moderators"Possibly because the link was too gruesome for comfort.So again with a less direct link.honestfedup #4: "You are nothing but a bunch of arrogant hypocrites."Yes; I guess we are; see...http://www.whaling.fo/Default.aspx?ID=6767...and explore via the links on the left./davblo2 Sun 28 Jun 2009 09:21:29 GMT+1 Rob_Hob2 http://www.bbc.co.uk/blogs/thereporters/richardblack/2009/06/at_the_international_whaling_c_2.html?page=17#comment6 honestfedup if you were an isolated person on Earth interacting with no-one and depending on no other, your argument would be correct. However, you are WRONG precisely because we ALL live in an increasingly interconnected global society where we all AFFECT each other.The Japanese, or in particular the Japanese conducting the killing of whales and dolphins, depend on and interact with, in one way or another, with the rest of the world. Thus the opinion the rest of the world has on them matters. They gain benefit from being part of a global society and thus should accept the RESPONSIBILITIES that go with being respected world citizens.Without insulting any specific culture, I think we can all agree that certain behaviours are not acceptable anywhere in the world, irrespective of how long they have been an established part of a culture. I am sure we can all think of UNACCEPTABLE practices ALL OVER THE WORLD that have been part of culture for very long, and yet are clearly wrong. Thus to say that criticising behaviour in other cultures is biased or racist is disingenous and simply WRONG.The Japanese can close off their islands and cut themselves off from the rest of the world... and in that case they would be treated as aliens and outsiders, purely on their effects outside their territory. Clearly this first option is not going to happen as the Japanese want to be part of the wider world, and just about all of them would agree on this point.Accordingly those Japanese still WHINING about cultural bias in the criticism of whaling and killing of dolphins should realise that the MAJORITY of the outside world they deal with finds these activities WRONG and ABHORENT... irrespective of whether these moral conclusions were arrived at emotionally, logically, or in a combination of both. They should accept their responsibilites as world citizens and morally shape up. Clearly they want to be part of the world so it is time to pay up this social contract and stop whale and dolphin killings in a way as return for respect in and being part of the wider world. Sun 28 Jun 2009 08:47:25 GMT+1 davblo2 http://www.bbc.co.uk/blogs/thereporters/richardblack/2009/06/at_the_international_whaling_c_2.html?page=14#comment5 This post has been Removed Sat 27 Jun 2009 23:32:22 GMT+1 blancmoguls http://www.bbc.co.uk/blogs/thereporters/richardblack/2009/06/at_the_international_whaling_c_2.html?page=11#comment4 This post has been Removed Sat 27 Jun 2009 22:04:27 GMT+1 FedupwithLiberals http://www.bbc.co.uk/blogs/thereporters/richardblack/2009/06/at_the_international_whaling_c_2.html?page=8#comment3 Actually, using emotion rather than logic is the surest way to follow the road to hell which is paved with well intentions. Those of you who are so self righteous about whaling, killing dolphins, etc. should shut up and mind your own business. Imposing your misguided views on another culture is biased and racist. If you do not desire to hunt, kill, and eat whale meat is your business. How about I impose upon you that you will be required to hunt, kill and eat the same? You are nothing but a bunch of arrogant hypocrites. Sat 27 Jun 2009 21:51:25 GMT+1 blancmoguls http://www.bbc.co.uk/blogs/thereporters/richardblack/2009/06/at_the_international_whaling_c_2.html?page=5#comment2 PS if i were at "the cove" I wouldn't restrain myself from stopping them. Sat 27 Jun 2009 21:37:33 GMT+1 blancmoguls http://www.bbc.co.uk/blogs/thereporters/richardblack/2009/06/at_the_international_whaling_c_2.html?page=2#comment1 Emotional appeal of course. For that is a basis of morality, the overrinding guide to what is and isn't acceptable in the way we live. and if you say politics is the most effective way of bringing about change which in turn, in a democracy at least, is influenced by public opinion, then whatever it takes to stir people into protest and action must be right. We humans are emotional beings, and our emotions should play a large part in our decisions and actions and illustrate our empathy with all sentient creatures. Sat 27 Jun 2009 21:36:34 GMT+1 SaintOne http://www.bbc.co.uk/blogs/thereporters/richardblack/2009/06/at_the_international_whaling_c_2.html?page=0#comment0 It's a disgusting act. Tis a shame that it is so embeded in culture. I don't blame them for doing it, but I think more pressure needs to be applied. At the risk of sounding like a over-enthusiastic animal rights activist, dolphins/whales are extremely intelligent creatures and I think that they deserve more respect than being butchered like that.If I were at "the cove" I would find it hard to restrain myself from stopping them. Fri 26 Jun 2009 15:39:18 GMT+1