Feeling Flat


Who Let THe Air Out?


Both 2011 and the Year of the Rabbit have barely begun but doesn’t it seem like the world is somehow off-kilter.  The public demonstrations in Tunisia, Egypt and Yemen in quick succession has already toppled the leader in one country and placed the remaining leaders in a precarious situation.  Nature too seems to have gone extreme.  The landslides in Brazil, the snowstorms in Europe and USA (extending all the way to Texas), the floods that led to the inland sea in Queensland, Australia has now been topped by the most powerful cyclone to have ever hit Australia (Cyclone Yasi).  What phenomena has raised the blood pressure in the Middle-East and stirred up the weather systems around the world?  Would that  be the El Loco and the El Nino effects?

Like many, I have been following the drama in Egypt these last two weeks that has already claimed about 300 lives.  I know little about the politics and the situation there in Egypt but happily, Malaysia has been able to evacuate some 10,000 Malaysian citizens and students out from that volatile situation.   I am also  glad that the Egyptian family of a friend are safe even though they are concerned about safety from mobs and are concerned about the food supply situation.  I certainly hope that the Egyptians will be able to achieve a resolution to the situation without further violence and loss of life.

Meanwhile Australia has been hit by the combination right – left hook of massive state-wide flooding in Queensland and now by the monster storm Cyclone Yasi – the strongest and biggest storm ever to hit the country.  The latest is that the remnants of Yasi is causing flooding in Victoria in the south.  Yet New South Wales in the east is suffering from water shortage and there are forest fires near Perth in the west.  The people and the businesses are reeling under the punches.  Insurance companies are really having a bad time.  Now will this become a regular and even possibly an annual occurrence due to climate change?

It’s enough to take the wind out of our sails.

Still, dear reader, let’s not get ourselves down yet.  Let’s be hopeful that the year can only improve from this point.  Every one think “bunnies” now.

25 thoughts on “Feeling Flat”

  1. Calvin, I have been feeling the same way lately. It’s sort of scary. Come to Canada.! So far we are living in the temperate zone – weatherwise and every other way.



  2. This situation is very, very fragile. I am very concerened about the possibility of Egypt as well as other Arab nations destabalizing, similar to Iraq or Afghanastan. It is paramount to peace in the Middle East that we ensure a quick, orderly transition in Egypt and Tunisia. The less stable the Middle East become, the easier it becomes for terrorists to concieve and execute attacks on the United States, undetected. Peace in Isreal will also be put at risk.

  3. So I’m not the only one wondering about all that is going on ? It certainly does appear that the feces is hitting the fan in a lot of places… and spraying far and wide.

    I would guess that there are quite a few squirrels watching from the woods, with their stockpiles of nuts stowed away, just shaking their heads, saying, “Look at those crazy humans, going from bad to worse in a hurry…”, and some of them are secretly sniggering, to the effect of, “Well it serves those arrogant SOBs right…”.

    Now it is flooding in Sri Lanka…

    A quote from Kurt Vonnegut comes to mind : “We could have saved the world, but we were too cheap.”

    Hope you have a good big pile of nuts stockpiled in the forest ?

  4. Change is inevitable.
    Change can be for the good.

    but Climate Change? this is a bummer …..

    The initial reporting and labeling of the phenomenon as ‘global warming’ allowed those, -the status quo- the nay-sayers- the ostriches with their heads in the sand, to pooh-pooh the whole concept.

    We are all in the same boat, wherever we find ourselves in the world.

    Spaceship Earth is all we have…. All we will ever have.

    Everyone! Start Bailing! The Ship is Floundering!

    Meanwhile, we all go on with our day-to-day, Me included. (http://herekittykatkat.blogspot.com/)

    Let us make that day-to-day the best we can, the most constructive we can, the most inspiring we can and with the most love for each other, our fellow creatures and the world that is our home sweet home.

    My best wishes and blessings upon us all!

  5. I can understand the problems in these countries when you hear now what has happened all that time. Climate change is more tricky. Mother earth is angry. We need to start loking after our planet…..and think bunnies:)

  6. The situation in Egypt is discouraging, to say the least. There has been great unrest in the middle east for quite some time.

    Experts and Israeli intel are saying that all this uproar has been the cause of a group known as the Muslim Brotherhood. This group is very dangerous having bred terrorists such as Osama bin Laden, his top deputy Ayman al-Zawahiri, and the 9/11 mastermind Khalid Sheikh Mohammed.

    It was founded in 1928 in Egypt and continues to attract extreme jihadists. The goal of this group is to spread Islamic Sharia law worldwide and unite all Muslim nations into one Islamic super state. It is now considered the most influential Islamist organization in the world — with chapters in more than 100 countries.

    Many people fear this group could take over power in Egypt if all the protests and violence succeed. What that could mean for those of us in the US is unnerving and the danger is even greater for Israel.

    I do not believe that all Muslims are terrorists or evil. I have met a few and have friends who know some as well. They are decent, law-abiding people. But this Muslim Brotherhood group is trouble. I pray they back off and let the poor Egyptian people get on with their normal lives!

  7. The Brotherhood is a major force in the Egyptian society and there will be no stable new gouvernement without them. So they have to be involved – enough of these people have suffered for their religious believes. The Egyptian society is different from f.e. the Iranian – anyway, whatever future will bring, it is nonsense to try to isolate one group, exactly this will the old regime bring back into power.
    I think things start to go wrong now, the old elite tryes to make a deal and to fade away slowly, and Europe and the US seemingly have an interest in this – as can be seen from the statements of the Munich conference. I think that this is exactly the wrong way, it will ad frustration to the protesters and they will feel traited at some point when they see no result. And than “the West” will be seen as the guilty party – not totaly wrong possibly. I think some of our super leaders give away a real chance at the moment. The revolutions in Northern Africa and through the Arabian world are movements of the young people, a generation who has the will and the possibility to change old unfree systems – and Europe and the US shake their oh-so-wise heads …

  8. Egypt- I believe the people are behind this and not any single organization. And I have great hopes for their aspirations and admire their courage. We need to stay out of it as much as possible. We wouldn’t want people meddling in our own internal affairs.

    And if we want democracy in the world we must be prepared for whatever elections bring- even Hamas – it is the people’s decision to make for themselves.

    Foreign Affairs and Diplomacy are sensitive difficult areas to navigate …. after all, we want and hope our interests are not adversely affected …. but the people’s choice and self-determination are what it is about for them and we must respect that.

    I was very touched by the Egyptian man in the street I heard say that we, in America, elect our own President and he would like to be able to do that just once in his life… elect his own President.

    And I cannot help wondering what it must have meant to the people to see President Obama there in Egypt in person speaking …. wow, that ‘Devil-Nation’ America has it in its power to elect as its President this multi-ethnic, multi-cultural man as its leader!

    ….. We are a great nation…. We can be better … We must do better…

  9. I do worry about the climate change and what it will mean for us all. And the situation in Egypt is also very scary. Although I don’t think political unrest is any different – it just seems to move from spot to spot around the world.

  10. As long as I have lived on this earth, there has been wars and tragic things happening. After 77 years on this earth I have come up with no solutions. A few reasons for the happenings, but we all can come up with reasons–both good and bad.

  11. sweetmelonberry,
    Thanks for visiting and leaving a comment. I like your moniker. Your concerns are quite legitimate but things are so complicated there that I suspect the final outcome will surprise us as well. So, I guess, no point getting worried until it is clearer what we have to worry about. In the meantime though, we could all learn the lesson about the importance of freedom and social justice in any society.

    I agree with your Kurt Vonnegut quote. We had our chance and we blew it. We will now face the consequences. From now on, severe weather will become more intense and more frequently. And, if you have noticed, these events are affecting larger areas and larger populations. Before long, we will be seeing mass movements of refugees trying to flee these severe weather patterns. The next opportunity to do something or face more consequences is in the Amazon where deforestation is causing the area to dry up. I hope we can at least arrest or slow the decline.

  12. Kat,
    I spent 15 years trying to promote conservation in my part of the world. There were some successes but progress has been far to slow, victories have often been half-victories and in the end it has been too little too late. I am resigned to the fact that we will face the problem of mass destruction, food shortages, millions of refugees and social and economic upheaval because of climate change. The world is going to become an angry and ugly place. We should start preparing to get through it.

    The storm is coming. We better start preparing.

  13. Sincerity,
    I admit I do not know much about the politics there and could be wrong but I am not entirely convinced that the Muslim Brotherhood is as bad as they have been made out to be. I think some of it is due to media hype – like the link to Osama. The CIA has probably closer links to Osama than the Muslim Brotherhood. But the danger of Islamic extremism is a very real one and should not be ignored but the best way is to engage the moderates in a meaningful way and not to marginalise them. A Muslim Brotherhood with a effective role in nation building is less likely to go to the extreme end. Don’t get me wrong. I am no supporter of syariah law. But democracy is the only solution – not marginalisation.

    I agree with you entirely. While I have personal reservations about the goals of the Muslim Brotherhood, they do represent a large portion of the population and need to be part of the future. We have to put our trust in and defend the process of democracy. The problem from the start was the support the West gave to repressive dictatorships.

  14. Kat,
    Islamic extremism is a real and present threat. I live with it in my part of the world. We need to be vigilant against it but I share your optimism that what is going on in Egypt is a popular uprising of the people. I hope we are right and that the result is an inclusive democracy that represents all the people.

    Secret Agent,
    I think that climate change will cause all sorts of problems including political turmoil. The sad thing is that the world is becoming a more dangerous place.

  15. Joyce,
    I am glad I never lived through the sufferings of the first and second world war but I fear that the world will experience a new horror within the next two decades as climate change wrecks havoc with food, safety, travel, economy and ultimately create political and social upheaval. This will be the nightmare of the next generation. I am sorry if I sound so negative. I really believe this to be unavoidable fact.

  16. Let us indeed be optimistic!

    After the cataclysm here on Earth that brought down the dinosaurs ….. what an amazing Life History then occurred on the planet!

    What wondrous life forms will next appear on Earth! Life cannot be denied!

    When Mankind, Homo Sapiens, becomes extinct and takes along with him countless other species, a fresh bright new page for Life on Earth will await the evolutionary pen!

  17. I have believed for about 20 years that the natural systems were breaking down as we have seen increasingly violent acts of nature, as well as extreme phenomena in places they never were before: earthquakes where no one knew there were fault lines, tornadoes at the coasts, hurricanes and monsoons in new places as well, and more landslides, flooding, and wildfires than ever before. I have always attributed this to man’s abuse of the planet, but now I wonder if we are simply at the limits of what can be sustained by the natural world, if there is a timer on the life of this planet which is about to go off for good. Since we humans are a part of nature, much as many deny it, how could we not be responding to the catastrophic condition of our environment, even if we are not consciously aware of it? I am not a scientist, but I have been around long enough to observe changes, and read enough to know that they are not just events in a normal cycle. But I do so wish we could all learn to live in peace together before our collective time on this planet ends.

  18. There will always be strife and natural calamity until we learn the meaning of respect for both each other and nature. Very simple yet seemingly hard to implement.

  19. Kat,
    I went to look at the cat. Cujo, the demon cat, is alive! It lives!

    As a race, we are no smarter than lemmings, heading willy-nilly towards collective catastrophe. How future generations will judge us.

    Wisdom will be seen as foolishness. The simple and necessary is seen to be impossible. There is something wrong with the world ……..humans.

  20. http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Lemming
    The myth of lemming “mass suicide” is long-standing and has been popularized by a number of factors. In 1955, Disney Studio illustrator Carl Barks drew an …

    Lemming Suicide Myth
    Disney Film Faked Bogus Behavior ……..


    Aug 19, 2007 … Did Disney filmmakers fake lemming ‘suicide’ scenes for the nature documentary ‘ White Wilderness’?

  21. Kat,
    What? Fake lemming suicides? Did Disney lie about talking mice too? What kind of Mickey Mouse outfit is that? I am seriously shocked to learn that Disney is just another corporate monster.

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