Tuesday, June 26, 2007

Aphorism Of The Day Pt.8

To keep the mood of today, yet making it a bit lighter:

Common sense is not as common as they make you belive.

Problems Won't Vanish If You Outlaw Them

This midsummer there was a huge festival in Rauma, Finland. During that festival two young men, both born in 1987, died because they took a grill into a tent. They were both above 15-years, so they both have had at least 9 years of school. In school they teach you about carbonmonoxide (CO). Both, in primary schools and in secondary schools you have classes where they teach you the dangers of CO. They were 20-years old, so they most likely have served their conscription. Minimum time in the army is 6 months. If you don't learn how to handle fire when you're 6 months in the deep forest, there's seriously something wrong with you.

Helsingin Sanomat (in Finnish) writes that they are now planning to ban BBQ in festival areas all together because of this.

Here's the story (roughly) translated:

BBQ may be outlawed in festival areas

Rescueworkers are ready to ban barbeques in festival areas' camping villages, writes Savon Sanomat.

Rescuelaw states the authorities can already now ban BBQ in dense tent-areas. Then barbequing is forbidden in the immediate surroundings of the tents and inside them.

Savon Sanomat interviewed Rescuechief Erkki Asikainen from North-Savo's rescuefacilities and he says that fire safety has been thought as obvious / self-explanatory until now. According to him rescueworkers haven't even thought about warning people barbequing inside a tent or right next to one.

In Raumanmeri's midsummerfestival two young men died of smoke or carbonmonoxide, when they had taken a small ball-bbq inside a tent. From this it came out this is quite common habit in festivals. It is a fashion-thing, which has spawned from banning open fire in tent-areas and cityfestivals.

...So, when two guys take, against all their knowledge and education, a bbq in a closed enviroment and die because of it, we should ban bbq also outside the tent? Does not compute. I apologize for saying this, but I don't think even if they lived, those kids were gonna cure AIDS nor end poverty. We did not lose the formers of World peace here. ...And gasoline stations are mainly self-service anyways. *1

"Be fruitful and fill the land" was written in one book. I think we can put a "check" mark on that one. Mission accomplished. If one wants to snuff it because of their own stupidity, go for it. The purpose of laws is to protect the weak, not to replace common sense. In this case, who and what will the tent-area bbq ban serve?

If I take a brick, run into a flower market and beat the flowers into a mush with the brick, should we forbid fireplaces, because they are built with bricks? ...Or should we point the finger towards me? Naw, that would be admitting I have some responsibility over my own life.

If you want to run inside a tent with scissords in your hand and a plastic bag over your head while drinking cyanide when you are barbequing in there, go for it. You have had the education already in pre-school you shouldn't run with scissords. If you choose to do that, you probably would do that even if it would be outlawed. Or at least find another, legal-but-sharp instrument to run with. As the title says: You can't solve a problem by making it illegal.

And I do not believe a one word of "they didn't know about the dangers of carbonmonoxide" -excuses. They did. Period. In Finland we have mandatory school system, and those guys were Finnish. By the law, they have had minimum of 9-years of school where they have been taught about CO.

OK, they might've been (read: most likely were) drunk. Maybe alcohol had some influence on their judgement. If this is the case, maybe alcohol wasn't their thing. I've been so drunk I have no idea how I got home, if I got home. But I never even thought about setting a fire in closed enviroment. I've been so drunk that I've been laughing at a guy twice my size. But I have never poured gasoline on myself and lit a match. ...Get the point? If alcohol takes away your self-preserving instinct so badly you are willing to toast bread while taking a bath or taking a bbq inside a tent, you should not drink alcohol. But I do not want to go more into this alcohol thing right now, as I need to write more about Finnish government's attempts to promote alcohol and alcoholism through different regulations, bans and such which has been keeping alcohol on the front page since the dawn of Finnish press.

Back to bbq ban. Ban. This is what Finnish government knows. The only thing it knows. And it works. Worked with alcohol between 20's and 30's. Works with drugs now. In Finland no-one drives over the speed limit, because it is forbidden. You don't believe me? Ask Karpo*².

I understand you should not put a bbq right in between three tents and light a fire, but in the whole tent-area? Barbequing is part of Finnish summer. Banning it on festivals would be the same as banning salmiakki, sourdough ryebread and Koskenkorva.

But this is not the issue. Again the ban has nothing to do with the reasons why they want to impose it. It is just for creating more and more laws that take the resonsibility away from people. Finland is a northern country, but we don't need to make it northern-America. Education, responsibility and common sense have been our virtues for quite some time now. Why do we want to take that away?

As the news article said, the rescueworkers haven't even thought about warning people about bbq inside a tent. They have thought it was obvious; self-explanatory...

We are being protected against our own good.

For example: Company's sole purpose is to make profit to the shareholders. The products they sell have no meaning to the shareholders. As long as it sells. So poison in food is quite out of the question. But all other stuff. Extra chemicals to mimic some desired qualities and cheap incredients. The big guy wants to sell you the loaf of bread than could give you cancer since it was bigger profit to use asbestos instead of baking soda. The law is there to say they can't do that.

The law is not there to protect you against getting some asbestos and some bread and making yourself an asbestos-sandwitch. Your common sense should protect you against that.

This law that prohibits you using the bbq inside a tent would be this kind of law already, if it wouldn't cause a risk of fire to the neighbouring tents. But a law to ban all bbq in the whole area, beacause someone might still take it into a tent and causing his own death? (Yes, I ment his, girls are not that stupid.) I say, ban toothbrushes on camping areas as well. I might jab a toothbrush in my ear and run sideways against a tree. I say, ban toasters and hairdriers on those houses with bath and/or shower. We've all seen that scene on that movie.

When we don't use something, we lose it. Remember those French classes back in the school? After all these years, how is your French? The same thing happens with common sense. You don't need to know "fire - hot - burn - hurt" anymore. There's a warning sign next to the fire, or else we can sue the man-who-make-fire.

Or then again, maybe it would be more profitable to the society if everyone would start to take responsibility of their own lifes? If we would just stop to think what we are doing and not run like headless chicken through our lives? If you cannot take responsibility of your own life, and you lack the common sense, the government can help. But they are nowadays eager to restrict you. We had just one incident and they ruined it for everyone. Quick and radical change. But not anything new. This decade has started it. We have entered the "if someone can think of it, everyone is a suspect of doing it" -era.

Of course the media cannot say "dumb kids". Of course the festival organizers can't say "tough luck, not our problem". Of course the kids are not to blame. No-one ever told them carbonmonoxide can be lethal. It is the evil bbq. It is the lenient laws we have. It is the society. We need more rules. We need more regulations. We need more guardians. This does not serve the public. The parents of those dead kids most likely have quite tough times right now. But to single out the bbq as the cause, and forgetting the kids' stupidity just makes us to forget the skill of common sense. We don't need to think whether it is wise to burn a bucket of gasoline in a tent to grill your sausages, nor we need to think whether smearing napalm on the sausage in the tent and lighting it up is the smartest thing, but we can now memorize: "a bbq in a tent is bad, a bbq in a tent is bad, a pike is a fish, a pike is a fish*³..." And we did not hurt the feelings of the parents of the deceased by pointing the finger in that general direction, how correct that may be. Next time I buy a rakovalkea I must check if it is suitable for indoor activities...

My own life and my freedom are my shares in this huge company called life. And I want to see some profit!

*1 - Tribute to BH.
*² - For those who don't know who Karpo is. Hannu Karpo is now retired reporter who has been reporting several decades about injustices in Finland, but in this a lot of focus was also on traffic and safety on the road. He was recently caught of speeding when he was driving to the shooting of his last show... (Define irony.)
*³ - An old Finnish proverb - "A pike is a fish, a pike is a fish. (Did it make it's nest in a tree?)" - means you are only learning it for the learning's sake, but you don't understand the meaning.

Appreciating History Today

Surfing Wikipedia I somehow ended up on this page. It tells about some fictional character in Halo computer game series. I counted it was more than 5 screens long article. To humour myself I went to see Ronin's page. Less than three.

There's more to write about fictional computer game avatars than almost a thousand year old group of masterless samurais; about their history, their values, their art, their effect on the country, and their affect on the culture?!

I think something very very wrong is happening here.

Monday, June 18, 2007

Moonstation energy problem solved!

If there's going to be a permanent station on the moon, they need lots of energy and until now that has been an issue.

I got an idea. There's already a company called Magenn, who has this airballoon, that is high in the sky and generates electricity in higher altitudes than conventional wind turbines. There's also (Thanks to Kepler) a solar sail. What if we combine those?

On the poles of the moon we put high altitude solar sails, that don't sail to anywhere, but redesign them as solar windmills - like the Magenn thingie. Then put them high with tethers. And I assume the rotating model Magenn is producing don't pull the tether too hard, so even in large sizes and quantities of the High Altitude Rotating Solar Hijackers (HARSH) they still wouldn't be able to move the moon and cause all kinds of unwanted effects here on Earth.

Actually, we would need to put the solarwindfarm on the north pole, where there's virtually a peak of eternal sunshine. A point where the sun will always shine, except when there's lunar eclipse.

How about that? (Too bad I don't have enough money to patent this...)

Tuesday, June 12, 2007

We Are The Bork!

1 Ideeut
1 Ideeut cullegooe-a tu telk (in stoopeed svedeesh cheff eccent) veet
1 Stoopeed idea vheele-a telkeeng leeke-a zee svedeesh cheff
1 Vurt1000 imege-a heefeely crupped
2 Børk-leeke-a imeges tu coot
1 Phutushup
10 Meenootes ooff ixtra teeme-a et vurk

Resoolt: Vurt8 imege-a... Børk Børk Børk!

Thursday, June 07, 2007

Work stupidities... (Pt.1)

I came from holidays, and what do I see?

Emma, a friend of mine is apparently sitting next to me. And in our "bermuda's triangle of intelligence" she feels like home. Here's couple of pics of my collegues playing with salt...

Yes... That's only salt. She's naturalist girl. And while taking this picture she started laughing and actually accidentally snorted some salt. I couldn't but to laugh at her. Pain is fun if it's caused by stupidity.