A Weblog monitoring coverage of environmental issues and science in the UK media. By Professor Emeritus Philip Stott. The aim is to assess whether a subject is being fairly covered by press, radio, and television. Above all, the Weblog will focus on science, but not just on poor science. It will also bring to public notice good science that is being ignored because it may be politically inconvenient.

Thursday, November 03, 2005

Our Ship of Fools.....

This morning I was reminded inexorably of Hieronymus Bosch's symbolic masterpiece, The Ship of Fools, painted around 1490-1500. Humanity sails through the ocean of life in a riot of madness, symbolized by an inverted funnel, beneath an owl of heresy.

Bosch's The Ship of FoolsWhat has changed? We have never been modern. Today, Margaret Beckett and a science correspondent, Heaven forefend, talk merrily of achieving "a stable climate". What foolish hubris! Climate has never been stable for a moment - it is the maddest of oxymora. Elsewhere, the Westminster Village feeds gluttonously on the carcass, butchered and barbecued on College Green, of a Northern lad made good - Bl(a)unket(t) coverage, filled with self-righteous pieties (as if journalists never make fools of themselves). And a missing red panda is re-discovered "safe in a tree" in Birmingham. What Pandamonium!

Of course, it is all a Gunpowder Plot to get King Blair. [Above Right: The Ship of Fools (1490-1500) by Hieronymus Bosch: part of a triptych, oil on wood, measuring 58 x 33 cm, on display in the Musée du Louvre, Paris. Image: public domain, from Wikipedia.]

Meanwhile, back at The Ranch, a chap who often wears a kilt, and a bloke who has been spotted sporting a cowboy hat, tuck into:
Watercress soup with applewood-smoked bacon
Espellette cream
Lemon sole with herb crust
Chicory, petite asparagus, and black cherry tomatoes
Salad of butter lettuce, white cucumbers, and golden pea tendrils
Champagne dressing
Lady apple sorbet
Brandy snap basket
Spiced Autumn fruit compote.

What can one say, save:
"..... Out, out, brief candle!
Life's but a walking shadow; a poor player,
That struts and frets his hour upon the stage,
And then is heard no more: it is a tale
Told by an idiot, full of sound and fury,
Signifying nothing."
[Macbeth (V, v, 19)]

Philip, dead parrots all round.

[New counter, June 19, 2006, with loss of some data]

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