Tuesday 18 February 2014

Animal Crackers

Imagine, last year it is going into Autumn and in the public bar of our local, "The Four Horsemen" suddenly I have this urge.  Not that one, but to stand up and predict the future rather than football results. 

I see a great mist and as it moves there is a man.  He is in waders and paddling through the great waters towards a deceptively spacious semi-detached bungalow in a desirable area close to the river and facilities.  He speaks to the residents.  They are cast down in misery.

"Money is no object!" he prophesizes as they try to shout him down.  "All that must be done will be done!"  Then I see that it is our Prime Minister who should be touring the world with his flunkies selling London property and anything else worth flogging, such as large banks or public utilities.

The vision is of England under floods and the political panic arising when most of it is in Tory constituencies vulnerable to marginal shifts in voting patterns. 

The other people in the pub begin to talk to The Lady about whether it is time for me to lay off the fizz and change to Complan and to ask for medication. 

Yet it has come to pass and did anyone predict it?  Not precisely, but it is apparent that many locals and experts had become concerned about the flooding risks. The evidence was there and was mounting up.

They were ignored, largely it seems because the Environment Agency (EA) was stuffed at the top level by pension seeking political's who were at the wacko end of the greenies and for whom drowning farmers had become an acceptable blood sport; along with eco terrorism such as blowing up pumping stations and trashing dredgers.

They along with the agri brigade at DEFRA laying bare the fields and hills to grow maize for corn syrup to promote obesity and for bio-fuels and factory farm fodder had ensured major run off of water which helped to turn bad weather and a few severe storms from a testing situation into a disaster.

What these departments and agencies have in common is the need to relentlessly search through the small print of all the Euro guff for some passing sub section or mention that will either justify their nonsense or enable them to claim that they were only obeying orders.

How this will all play out and to what effect is an open question.  I am not going to make predictions because apart from The Four Horsemen there are the Four Pitbull Terriers of prediction to worry about and they are on the loose again.

They are, in no particular order, Unintended Consequences, Unforeseen events, Chaotic Situations and Collapse Dynamics.  If you think we have had enough of these in recent years, then Brother, it is only just beginning.  The world is becoming ever more complicated.

So we demand of governments that they tell us what they are doing and intend.  They come up with documents, at vast cost, and all sorts of ideas, plans and programmes.  These are not their own but put to them by interested parties who will either gain or more likely profit by it.

It is clear that neither the political chiefs nor the administrative quasi-servants masquerading now as managers know all that much about any of it.  But confidence and certainty is vital to selling the dream.  But one or other pitbull terrier will turn up and chew the dream to ribbons and that none of them will really know how to deal with it except to throw more money at whoever comes up with best excuse or get out clause.

When it comes to knowing, suddenly our weather forecasters are telling us about the Jet Stream and its implications.  For decades this has not been a secret, but something rarely if ever mentioned because it might confuse the peasants and detract from the forecaster's authority.

Now they have this big globe that they tell is us the world with the Jet Stream which itself depends on other things in the Pacific.  In other words they are but helpless interpreters of great natural events in the planet.  These can be many things, some predictable, many not.

So as Cameron and our other political leaders wander the waters they might well consider that they are essentially a bunch of helpless and often useless interpreters of things they little know and understand less.

1 comment:

  1. The EA are very hot on health and safety - but not necessarily ours.