Do you want to live in terror? Well, let’s take an adventure through the Armageddon Sampler Google Reader!
The Canary Islands Government says it has commenced an in-depth geological survey of El Hierro, the smallest of the islands, in an effort to determine the source of an earthquake swarm.
The unprecedented seismic activity commenced on 19 July. In excess of 6,000 earthquakes have been recorded up to 14 September 2011. More than two dozen tremors were recorded during Wednesday (14 Sept.) alone.
It’s starting to look like fall in some parts of North Texas.
Trees are already changing color in order to survive the hot and dry conditions felt over the last few months.
“The same process happens then (in fall); we’re just seeing it earlier now because of the stress of our heat,” said Brian White, certified arborist for Arborilogical Services.
I’ve started following other apocalypse blogs, but, you know, blogs written by people who actually believe the apocalypse is going to happen. They’re funnier than I am. This comes from the blog Rap-Con, which is potentially misleading shorthand for “Rapture Condition.” Anyway, they provide us with a Rapture Meter. Status as I write this blog? Imminent.
In serious news, UK government money is being used to evict travellers (popularly known as gypsies) at Dale Farm in Essex, UK. Reports The Guardian:
The government must suspend the “immature and unwise” eviction of 400 Travellers from Essex green belt and seek a peaceful solution, the UN and a European human rights group said.
The UN Committee on the Elimination of Racial Discrimination (CERD) used uncharacteristically robust language to express its “deep regret” at the £18m eviction at Dale Farm, the UK’s biggest single eviction in modern times.
The UN was joined by Thomas Hammarberg, the Council of Europe’s commissioner for human rights, who warned there was a great risk of human rights violations if 86 families and 100 children were forcibly removed.
The eviction is being subsidised with a grant from Department for Communities and Local Government of £1.2m for Basildon council and Home Office funds of up to £4.65m for Operation Cabinet, the Essex police operation.
The self-described “revolutionary socialists” of the UK organization Counterfire take the extra step in describing what’s going on here. The headline for their piece? “Dale Farm travellers’ eviction is ethnic cleansing“:
As often as possible, David Cameron and his ConDem government like to assure us that whilst they are most definitely giving the British economy some tough-love by taking a massive axe to funding for the NHS, education and other vital public services, we shouldn’t worry because “we’re all in this together”.
In a year where the average annual salary has fallen by £2600 but Britain’s 1000 richest people have gotten £77.2bn richer, such rhetoric isn’t convincing at the best of times, but it is has been rendered even more hypocritical and blatently false with the granting of £18m to Basildon Council in order to evict Britain’s largest Traveller community from Dale Farm, making hundreds of women, children and families homeless.
The ConDem lie and the nature Dale Farm eviction is made even more clear and sinister in light of the Prime Minister’s endorsement of the eviction and his and Nick Clegg’s speeches on how multiculturalism “has failed us” and on how they believe that Britain needs a “much more active, muscular liberalism”, which ceases to tolerate “these segregated communities behaving in way’s which run counter to our values”.
Whilst Britain’s Muslim communities were the ethnic minority Cameron particularly had in mind in his speech at February’s international security conference in Munich, Britain’s history of scapegoating Irish, Jewish and African-Carribean workers and the current Europe-wide rise in the persecution of Roma people should leave government critics and anti-racists with little doubt as to why the “cash-strapped” ConDem government was suddenly able to award Basildon District Council (BDC) a grant of £8m to remove the travellers from the area, with an additional £10m being donated to cover policing costs.
I didn’t even know that there was UK government policy with respect to travellers, but apparently there has been. If I read this press release from the UK Government’s Department for Communities and Local Government correctly, the Department frames this eviction as part of what I understand to be devolution:
Communities Secretary Eric Pickles today announced proposals for a more localist and fairer way of providing sites for travellers, building on earlier commitments to strengthen measures to tackle the abuse of the planning system.
In new proposed planning guidelines, the Green Belt and countryside will have more robust protection, local councils will have more discretion, and local planning authorities will have a stronger hand in supporting appropriate development.
Which apparently also means the austerity-loving Cameron government should give money to the locality to evict travellers. From later in the press release:
Ministers have confirmed today that the department will provide up to £1.2m for Basildon Council to clear the unauthorised pitches on the Green Belt at the Dale Farm traveller site, given the exceptional nature of the case.
This example suggests that the rhetoric of devolution works in the UK as it does in the US: an austere, deficit-obsessed national government still uses national government resources to attack a beat-down population.
But anyway: my Google Reader is an index of misery. 1000+ entries left after all this. That’s one week’s worth of nightmares.
I don’t think the world is ending. It’s just always full of pain.