Saturday, November 25, 2006

What's 'It's a Shame To Waste' In A Dozen Languages?

Make sure you are abreast as many of the facts first, but this looks like a well worthwhile campaign to support.

The link to find your local MEPs is a very nice tool, and useful in its own right, too!

The European Union (EU)'s main waste law is currently being reviewed, which forms the basis for waste policy in every EU country.

Members of the European Parliament (MEPs) are about to vote on a revision of this law, and environmental groups across Europe are calling on MEPs to improve waste prevention, reuse, recycling and composting around Europe - without encouraging more incineration.

Please join our campaign to Stop the Waste - email your MEPs at

If at first you don't succeed..

As I prepare to take on yet another brick wall, I can at least find consolation and inspiration in stories of others who have tried, and succeeded, against major obstacles (often put) in their way by those tasked to help them. Better yet, an example of actually winning award from the very system that in some cases was there to thwart them: Tradecraft wins over the judges

However, I have to groan and applaud this from another section:

Chris Manze, a partner in Nottingham's The Stone Soup Project, which teaches teenagers rejected by the school system about music and film production, welcomed the initiatives. He said the Government needed to improve delivery. "If they could do anything to support social enterprises it would be to fund teams of bid writers to support the new social enterprises, because you don't have the resources to do it," he said.


You couldn't make it up. Well, you can.. and get it on air, probably!

I've been a grumpy bunny of late, so a littel levity is in order.

This rather excellent clip on the notion of UGC (user generated content. Or, as lampooned here, 'You do the work, don't get piad (or vetted for accuracy too much) and we rake it in still) via Newsnight.

When the spinning has to stop

I almost passed this one by, but having sat with my Mum in the (not local, oh, no, we had to go to the big city) hospital for 2 hrs beyond appointment time (staring at two posters, attached. Is it just me who sees a slight disiencentive to trying to help out?) because there was only one doctor (served, it seemed, by about a dozen gossiping, tea-making, paper-shuffling staff, all of whom left bang on clock-off), I have more than an interest in what is claimed to be delivered and what is.

Hence I did read this; Sack Hewitt (and not just for her voice)

Now the Torygraph has obviously decided that Cross of Ross is persona non grata, so it won't get published (big up to the Guardian for at least embracing some measure of free speech), but here's what I wrote:

'And today's target is...

Substitute (in the case of my area of interest) the environment for health, the suits can pretty much stay as is for all the difference their expertise can add (though salaries to match, and trips to Bali to discuss climate change inc.), and add appropriate talking head plus meaningless, open-ended, non-accountable (for all the targets) platitude ('this IS a problem and needs looking into...'), and we have another day of this nation’s governance in the media.

Yet it all seems to work out. Because will careers or salaries or perks be affected? No. A flurry of fuss and then the system moves on to the next issue, with detail lost in the whole.

So things will change how? Thank heavens for the vote. Now all I need is someone (as opposed to an amorphous entity like a constantly morphing party collection of ministers) to vote for.'

Matters of fact

This will take some careful phrasing: I was recently taken to task on my blog for expressing doubts (actually I was just being cautious about what was expressed there as fact) about some advice, and in doing so cited some other facts that had lead me to do so.

If nothing else, it confirmed my oft stated view that we are in a world of extremes, where black and whit are the only shades of green, and whatever makes the best headline or pushes the most vocal agenda is what will be served up.

So, despite being the one who freely admitted to still being confused, I was required to fall into a camp. Which I won't do.

All I know is that at present, my request to the authors of the two polar opposite views, respected experts in their fields as may be, have not replied to my request for clarification of their methods and how they arrived at their results.

So for now, I think I'll follow the advice of my mate Dave, who wrote to me in a private email. He is a definite 'man who can' and guru, who says ' in such cases about all you can do is split the difference between the two extremes'.

No way to save a planet, but probably the best we have. And that's the fact of the matter.