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Straight from the camel’s mouth

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Mr. Habib

It is hard to imagine what the world would be like without
The Bucket doing it’s job as a tenacious watchdog and counterbalance for biased and questionable scientific research.

study commissioned by the Nature Conservancy and Pew Environmental group  found that if all feral animals, including camels, were culled from Australia’s sparsely populated interior, an additional 1.3 billion tonnes of carbon could be stored in the natural revegetation by the year 2050.

“When feral animals belch, they release methane, a particularly noxious greenhouse gas, and every single camel releases the equivalent of around one tonne of CO2 each year.”

The Bucket recently received the following correspondence from a Mr. Habib Afghan-Camel, from Alice Springs.

“Dear Mr Bucket,

I have been humouring humans for nigh on ten years now, humping rich tourists along the dry and sandy Todd River bed in exchange for food and shelter from my servant wrangler.

As spokescamel for the Dromedary Action Group (DAG) I wish to challenge the Nature Conservancy report which is highly discriminatory against my species on the following two grounds.

1. The fecundity and population density of camels is regulated by the environmental provisions of Mother Nature.

This inviolable rule of natural balance has, to date, not been accepted by you humans who consider yourselves to have immunity, despite all the warning signs that ignoring it will ultimately have catastrophic consequences.

You continue to procreate like rabbits after a rutting competition.

Of greatest concern to the DAG is Australia’s persistence in paying out a $5185  Bonking Encouragement Allowance, payable by the Government nine months after the event, upon presentation of suitable evidence that the bonk did actually take place.

We view the camel eradication program as being nothing more than “species cleansing”, to create extra space for the additional 20 million humans (and their automobiles) to occupy by the year 2050.

2. The quoted figures of camel-gas emissions are both erroneous and fanciful.  The Report refers to emissions from “every single camel”.

Did they measure output from ALL members of the DAG?
No, of course they didn’t.
It is poor science and statistical ineptitude to make general conclusions after studying only small samples of individuals.

Please let me provide an example of wide natural variations within your own human population.

Last Monday, regular tourist Mr Dilbert Gross-Beergut, a businessman from Sydney spent half an hour perched on my back after consuming a breakfast of baked beans washed down with a litre of coca-cola.

I estimate that during that time he belched two cubic metres of carbon dioxide into the atmosphere, and twice that amount of pungent and probably highly flammable gas from a lower orifice which caused my skin to blister and scald quite badly.

A square foot of hairs on my hump subsequently fell out of their follicles on Tuesday, and my wife, Harbette, who was following closely behind now has acute ventricular flatulitis.

Why not cull Mr. Gross-Beergut also, on the evidence of HIS excessive emissions, if you are so concerned with the welfare of the planet?

In contrast, my passenger on Wednesday, a total stanger by the name of Mr GOF, was a genteel man of distinguished good grace, who has never been known to habitually pollute the environment in either of these unsavoury or unsustainable ways.

I herewith rest my case.

In the vast black universe of increasingly myopic human research, the Dromedary Action Group continues to rely upon The Bucket to provide a single twinkle of realistic sanity.

Yours Faithfully,

Mr. Habib Afghan-Camel

An unholy resurrection

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OK, I admit it……there was a very subtle hint in my previous post that this was never going to happen.

Life changes.

For one thing, the mongrel 2010 wet season is over.  Gracias a Dios.
The beautiful bowser of solar energy has now refuelled my diminished resources of sanity and joie de vivre, as well as recharging the vital electricity storage batteries.

Additional changes to my life have, as usual, been instigated by the inspirational Mrs GOF.    Blame this born-again bloggery on her.

"GOF, when my happy single life was replaced with our dubious union of holy matrimony 30 years ago, there was no contractual obligation for me to ever be the sole recipient of your relentless nonsense and tedious opinionated sermonising."

"This has been the longest three and a half months of my life."

"If you would like us to clock up 31 years together, please go back to your little (* expletive deleted) Bucket and fill that up with all your insipid ideologies instead of inflicting them upon me."

I argued that a reason for terminating the blog was my dwindling supply of half-intelligent ideas, and the consequent risk of writing pure unadulterated bullshit.

She reassured me.

"Don't worry GOF, the supply won't dry up.  Your cup runneth over with it.  You are quite full of it."

Additionally, since I took my eye off it for a few months, the world has gone to the dogs.

Nobody in authority seems to give a rat's arse that since I last wrote a blog, the population of Earth has increased by another 20 million.

It doesn't take a genius to work out that this behaviour, indifference and complacency is unsustainable in the long term.

Our human Titanic is listing precariously with an overloaded shifting cargo of people, political correctness and religious intolerance.
It surely requires some hefty irreverent and innovative counterweights in the hold, so that after we inevitably hit the iceberg of our self-indulgent arrogance we will at least gurgle on down to the bottom of the ocean of life on a more even keel.

Therefore I'll firstly make my token contribution by solemnly promising not to sire any more children.
(Escape Clause; this oath will be rendered null and void upon receipt of any invitation, demand and/or ultimatum from Elle)

Also, with jemmy bar in hand, I now prise off the rusty lid of The Bucket and make this token fresh deposit of satirical ballast to the now fermented semi-digested putrid cesspit of GOF's philosophy.

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GOF’s Gross Stupidity Award ….February

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This month we have a dead heat.

The winners are;

1. Mr Jacob Zuma, traditional Zulu, polygamist, and President of
    the Republic of South Africa who, at 67, has just fathered his
   20th child.
   This award is bestowed upon him, leader of a nation, for setting an
    appallingly irresponsible example for his people, continent and the

2. The International Media who did not have the courage to condemn
     him for having spent his entire adult life recklessly contributing to
     overpopulation.  Instead they chose to become obsessed with the
     relatively trivial fact that the 20th child was born out of wedlock to a
     woman 37 years his junior.

I am somewhat reluctant to recommend this Worldometers website
because the real-time statistics presented there will probably scare the pants off you.

And that's precisely the condition which got us into such a dire predicament in the first place.

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There is no Australian I admire more than entrepreneur, philanthropist and perennial straight-shooter Dick Smith.

This, is his assessment of our Government's plan to increase Australia's population from it's current 22 million to 35 million by the year 2050, and the stupidity of unregulated population growth.

"Plans to massively boost Australia's population are a bad idea and must be stopped, even if that means limiting women to 2 babies."

"No-one is allowed to talk about it, but I am."

"The Government wants to increase the population because it means more young taxpayers to pay the rising health and pension costs of the ageing population."

Talk doesn't come much straighter than that.

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Waiting for the balloon to go bang.

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During my historically insignificant lifetime of six decades, the population of Australia has increased 275% from 8 million to 22 million.  (source)

Ethiopia, despite it's frequent reliance on overseas food aid, has, during the same period enlarged it's population 600% from 15 million to 90 million.  (source)

Now honestly, who amongst all the intelligent people of the world including world leaders really believe this trend can continue unabated?

When will we realise that our monumental achievements during the 20th century in disease prevention and treatment (sanitation, vaccination and antibiotics) need to be counterbalanced by fertility control.

Or are we, like rabbits, just waiting until a human equivalent of myxomatosis re-establishes the balance of nature?

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Electrons; Good, bad, and not enough.

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I would like to launch on this forum my revolutionary, ground-breaking discovery in the field of molecular physics.

Except I don't know anything about the subject, so….something more earthy.

Mr and Mrs GOF chose to live in a location not serviced by the electricity grid of Australia.
Powering household energy requirements became one of our most challenging priorities.  Compromise became the inevitable reality.  We could have no ambition to own every electrically powered product ever known to K mart.  Alternative power is very expensive on a per kilowatt hour comparison with mains electricity, and every situation requires an individual solution.  No "one size fits all".

Hydro power was an option, except there was inadequate water during the 4 month dry season.
We built a wind generator which was not favorably viewed by God, who supplied temperamental winds.  Unimpressed by my persistence in carving a more efficient propeller and almost beating Him at His own game, He totalled the whole enterprise with a single bolt of lightning.
It was almost enough for me to demote Him from capital letter status.
God, it would seem, is not a very environmentally friendly dude.

We settled on a small solar power system for lighting, and powering small appliances, in tandem with propane gas for refrigeration and water heating.  Solar remains an expensive solution for these two high energy consuming applications.

Our electricity usage requires daily compromise and strict rationing of electrons.  We have a one- hour- only computer use allocation.  If Mrs GOF wants to photoshop,  then the world is spared GOF inflicting his blogging upon it for another day. The world would probably be a better place if Mrs GOF did a lot more photoshopping.
If the sun does not shine,( which is a frequent occurrence in an area of 150 inch annual rainfall,) then neither of us can use the computer.
And we never, ever, leave a light on if we are not using it.
Visitors incur the wrath of GOF if they forget to turn a light off. 
GOF Wrath is not a good thing.

We have neighbours who adopted an energy policy of "you can never have enough" and, along with solar have 2 micro hydro turbines, and a diesel backup generator.  They do have an adequate flow of electricity to power the complete K Mart whitegoods repertoire……..When the system is working!!!!   Which it frequently is not.  Their installation, maintenance and repair costs are high.

There is no intention in this discussion to make judgement of right or wrong with these two systems and start a bun fight between good neighbours.  Each system has both advantages and deficiencies.
Each is a compromise and an individual choice.

These same choices may well face all countries in the world on a larger scale as they grapple with the issue of increasing energy demands.   Coal-burning power stations are polluting our planet.  Nuclear technology can have frightening and catastrophic consequences. (Chernobyl).  Natural gas and petroleum products are a finite resource. New and alternative technologies are urgently required.

Just as our planet will not forever tolerate every member of its increasing human population driving its own individual petroleum powered motor vehicle, so also will there not always be a completely unlimited and cheap supply of electricity available at the flick of a switch.

It is time for the innovative, environmentally aware energy planners of our future world to step up onto centre stage, grab the baton, and start conducting the orchestra of world electricity consumption with a little less fortissimo and a lot more moderato.

And please turn the light off when you don't need it.  Thank you.

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