Misleading Words and Phrases

Words are important; if you tell a woman she has a good figure, she will take the compliment; if you tell the same woman that she has a good body , she will usually be slightly uncomfortable that there is a sexual innuendo in your compliment. Politicians are masters of abusing words as George Orwell showed in 1984. In his novel the Ministry of Love was about hate, and the Ministry of Peace was about war. The Ministry of Plenty tried to manage the shortages of food and basic materials and the Ministry of Truth conduct vicious untruthful propaganda. Continue reading

People have always left their country to fight for a cause in which they believe. Often these people are an essential part of the establishment in their home nation; Byron fought for Greek Independence and George Orwell fought against fascism in Catalonia. Today young British men have decided to fight for the Independence State of Iraq and Syria, but these young men will never become part of the British Establishment, mainly because they are being demonised for what they are doing rather than lauded. Some fear that when and if these young men return home they will practise terrorism in their home country. Continue reading

Out of Sight is Out of Mind

When writing of his experiences of poverty and the way the poor are treated, George Orwell described a cheap sleeping hostel at which the homeless slept sitting down but leaning forward against a rope. When it was time to wake up, the hostel manager untied the rope and sent the rough sleepers on their way. It was known as the twopenny hangover, which described not only the way people were made to sleep, but also the cost of the hotel.  Continue reading

Flood Insurance – Who should Pay?

Insurance is, as Orwell called it, a swindle, but at least it is a logical swindle. Insurance rates are calculated on the industry’s view of statistics; the uplift and margin applied to those statistics are the tools of the swindle, but the fundamental premium you pay depends on the figures. If you wish to insure your life you age and the statistical analysis of your longevity will be relevant and if you want to insure your home against losses suffered by flooding then the likelihood of flooding in the place where your home is situate is part of the figuring which sets the price that you pay. If the insurance company, when looking at the statistics tells you that it will not insure your home at any price, then you know that flooding is not merely possible but highly probable. Continue reading

All renewable technologies are not equal

George Orwell wrote “all animals are equal but some animals are more equal than others”. When it comes to microgeneration technologies, the technologies are not all equal and if you want to think that they are like people all equal, then you should think again..


A few weeks ago I got an email from a trade association complaining about one of my posts about biomass, in which I was critical of its carbon emissions and the health problems that biomass smoke emission causes. Continue reading