24 March 2020 – 13:57 GMT – 13°C Mostly Cloudy – Co. Dublin, Ireland
I’m struggling to understand the uneven and unfair responses of global governments to the covidgency. Shoulder-to-shoulder prayer meetings in India and Bangladesh versus arresting curfew breakers in Macedonia versus Belarus selling TV rights for its continuing football games. Not enough ventilators in Lombardy, among the richest places on earth, a team in Bray just eight kilometres from me have an Open Source Ventilator project trying to coordinate mass production of ventilators on not-for-profit basis. When the symptoms are treated, we must address the cause. Could that really be related to deforestation?
I loved watching the moon landings when I was a teenager but I was very aware of the social inequalities that could have been addressed with the money. Just as I was aware of the waste of human potential implicit in the cost of having a Cold War. Dr Strangelove was a parody of the military gambles. Biafra famine was in the news. Thinking globally, social inequalities remain a travesty.
“Whitey on the Moon”, the 1960’s protest song by Gil Scott-Heron seemed to summarise the problem. Politically incorrect terminology today but perhaps the sentiment is relevant fifty years later.
"Was all that money I made las' year (for Whitey on the moon?) How come there ain't no money here? (Hm! Whitey's on the moon). Y'know I jus' 'bout had my fill (of Whitey on the moon) I think I'll sen' these doctor bills, Airmail special (to Whitey on the moon)” Source: LyricFind Songwriters: Gil Scott-Heron Whitey on the Moon lyrics © Carlin America Inc
Dateline 15 Jan 2006 at 1315 on Krakatoa. I was standing on andesitic lava that I had seen flowing in May 1993 as I passed overhead flying between Perth and Singapore. A lot of ejecta (tephra) underfoot came from more violent eruptions the following year. Shared this today with C who is 4. And Krakatoa was big in bedtime stories last month with A who is 3.
And oddly, I ended up the evening in Netflix with Olafur Eliasson on Design from 2017. A lot of scenes filmed at Iceland sites I saw the same year, a visit there gifted by our kids several years earlier when we were too busy to go. Harpa, black beaches, columnar basalts, geysers and Golden Falls. And I loved the Eliasson exhibition at the Tate Modern in London last year. Visited five times. Paraphrasing Eliasson, we’re the art. Buddhist thinking, a tree falls in a forest without witnesses, does it make a sound? A rainbow only exists if someone is there to see it, and I’ve seen his rainbow, different than the rainbow Lia saw standing beside me. Your point of view depends on your viewing point.
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