Build A Model

I’ve been building a climate model for the past year or so. It’s my current big project. Before that my big project was an orbital simulation model. I’m always building simulation models of one thing or other, to try to understand how they work.

In fact it’s not really a climate simulation model that I’m constructing. It’s actually a model of heat flow from the centre of the Earth to its surface. The model has a fairly simple atmosphere on top of it, and also a Sun that shines on it. But I’m not really very interested in the Sun or the atmosphere: they’re just bit part players. The focus of my interest is on the layers of rock at the surface of the Earth. I’m looking underground.

I’m building this model because I had the idea a year back that when snow and ice builds up to great depths on the surface of the Earth, it will act as a layer of insulation, and cause the surface rocks beneath it to warm up. I wondered if the warming of these surface rocks would be enough to melt the overlying snow and ice. There was only one way to find out: build a model. And I knew how to build one, because building such models was what I used to do in university 40 years ago. Back then I was constructing heat flow simulation models of buildings. They weren’t climate models, but they were very similar.

Yesterday I was using my model to simulate snowfall at latitude 60º N. I was dropping fine snow (with the same thermal characteristics as expanded polystyrene) onto the surface of the Earth during an 6,500 year interglacial. It kept on melting, but as it melted it cooled the surface rocks until the point came when the snow stopped melting and started getting deeper, until it got to be 200 m deep. At this point, as I expected, the surface rock temperatures started to climb. And they kept on rising for the next 84,000 years until the snow melted, and the next interglacial began, and it started snowing again.

So using my model I can produce a series of repeated glaciations and deglaciations, very much like those that have been happening on the Earth for the past few million years.

It has to be taken with a very large pinch of salt, though. There are numerous assumptions that underpin this model, one of which is that the 200 m of snow all changes phase from snow to water at exactly the same time. Is that how snow actually behaves? Wouldn’t the melting be accompanied by flooding if that happened? Isn’t it more likely that the snow would gradually melt? Well, yes, it probably is more likely. And perhaps in the next round of improvements to my model, I’ll try to get that working a bit better.

But the point that I really want to make is that, in thinking about ice ages, I may not have a very good model, but I at least have a model. And it’s a model that can be improved. It’s a model in which the assumptions can be changed. It’s a model I can play around with.

And I was wondering this morning why there aren’t lots of these sorts of simple climate simulation models of the Earth so that people can see what happens if the Sun dims, or the atmosphere fills with carbon dioxide, or volcanoes erupt, or whatever.

Nobody seems to have any models. Nobody builds any models And if you don’t have a model, how are you going to have any idea at all what might happen?

I think that some of the climate scientists have models. But as far as I know those models are not available for public scrutiny. They probably also need supercomputers to run them. But why aren’t there simple little ones that people can run on their laptops or mobile phones? They wouldn’t be very accurate. but they’d be better than nothing.

It seems to me that at the moment we have a huge screaming public debate going on between, on the one hand, a bunch of climate alarmists, and on the other hand a bunch of climate sceptics/deniers. And neither the alarmists nor the sceptics have got any models. So it’s just a shouting match.

Does Greta Thunberg have her own climate simulation model? Does Al Gore? Does James Delingpole? Or Marc Morano?

‘The beginning of great change’: Greta Thunberg hails school climate strikes

The 16-year-old’s lone protest last summer has morphed into a powerful global movement challenging politicians to act

“I think enough people have realised just how absurd the situation is. We are in the middle of the biggest crisis in human history and basically nothing is being done to prevent it. I think what we are seeing is the beginning of great changes and that is very hopeful,” she wrote.

The answer to my question is: Almost certainly, No. None of them have their own models. None of them have ever sat tinkering with air temperatures or sea levels or solar flux, watching what happens as they change. They’re all people who either believe the Experts or who don’t believe the Experts.

Greta Thunberg and Al Gore believe the experts. And James Delingpole and Marc Morano don’t believe them. Neither does Donald Trump.

And neither do I. But the reason I don’t believe them is because the climate alarmists have not made their models available for scrutiny. They haven’t explained how they reached their conclusions. They’re asking us to simply take their word for it that carbon dioxide is warming the atmosphere, and will eventually melt all the ice in Greenland and Antarctica, and sink every seaport in the world beneath 60 metres of water, and to prevent that from happening we have to stop any more CO2 being released into the atmosphere. Theirs is a religion. They are asking for religious belief. And they’re getting it from the likes of Greta Thunberg. She’s joined in the shouting match. And all she’s doing is shouting.

I’m just going to carry on constructing my simulation model. I’m hoping that I can use it to study what CO2 in the atmosphere does. And dust deposition on glaciers. And Milankovitch cycles. It’s always only going to be a very simple model. But I don’t see any way out of the shouting match between Emmanuel Macron and the Gilets Jaunes protesters, or between the US Left and Right, if nobody has any model of the Earth and its climate.

Posted in Uncategorized | Tagged , , | 7 Comments

The Dying Mainstream Media

A couple of bits of news. First, in the UK:

…record numbers of people are already abandoning the BBC, either giving up television altogether or migrating to more modern streaming services like Netflix and others, which offer a range of content at a lower annual subscription rate. Breitbart London reported in January that more than 860,000 viewers cancelled their television licence in 2017/18 — the equivalent to around 2,300 people a day.

Those dropping away from the corporation are often those the company needs most to sustain its long-term future — young people. The Times reported 44 per cent of males aged 16-34 watch no BBC TV whatsoever in a typical week, and British viewers aged 16-24 spent more time watching just one rival — Netflix — than every BBC platform including TV, radio, and internet combined in 2017.

And second, in the USA:

Polling proves that public trust in the establishment media has collapsed in every imaginable way during Trump’s presidency.

There is no doubt anymore that corporate media’s ongoing assault against President Trump has backfired in a way that journalists will never recover from.

An IBD/TIPP poll asked about “the public’s perception of the mainstream news media” and found that “fully half the country says its trust in the media decreased over the past two years,” while only eight percent say they have more trust in the media.

I can only speak for myself. And I have to say that I stopped watching television in 2010. I also stopped reading newspapers at about the same time.

Why did I stop? Because none of them spoke up for me.

With the UK smoking ban of 1 July 2007, I – along with about 13 million other people –  was expelled from society. Nobody in the BBC spoke up for us smokers. Nor did any newspaper speak up for us either. We smokers simply ceased to exist in the UK mainstream media. And when they stopped listening to us, I stopped listening to them.

Antismoking is just like antisemitism. And being a smoker in the UK (and in fact more or less everywhere in the world) is now very much like being a Jew in Nazi Germany, prior to the Holocaust. We have been driven to the margins of society. We are treated with complete and perfect contempt. And some of us have done the same thing that many Jews in Nazi Germany did: they’ve emigrated to the dwindling numbers of countries where they’re still welcome (Greece, Austria?), and where the writ of the WHO Framework Convention on Tobacco Control has yet to run.

Did the Jews in Nazi Germany read German newspapers or listen to German radio? Probably not. Or if they did it was only to find out what was going to be done to them next. Certainly none of them would have felt part of the wider German society of which they had once been members.

And that’s how it is with me also. I’m not interested in the debates and discussions that may or may not be taking place in the mainstream UK media. I only want to know what they’re going to do to us smokers next. If I haven’t left the country, and gone to live elsewhere, it’s because I’m an old man, a bit unsteady on my feet, and unwilling to travel.

And also I don’t believe there’s going to be a Smoker Holocaust to rival the Jewish Holocaust. It’s not that I think that the antismoking zealots in Tobacco Control are any better or any less murderous than their Nazi forebears – they’re not -, but simply because there are far too many smokers in the world (I estimate about 1.5 billion) to gas them all. And also they are a valuable cash cow for governments to rob with high tobacco taxes.

But once very large numbers of people are expelled from society, and stop paying attention to a mainstream media which no longer makes any attempt whatsoever to speak up for them, is it any surprise if they find that their audience is gradually vanishing, bearing in mind that there are other very large social groups (drinkers, fat people, climate change deniers, etc.) who are also treated with almost equal contempt in the mainstream media?

Furthermore, in the internet era there are multiple sources of news and debate and discussion. You don’t have to listen to the BBC to find out what’s going on in the UK. In many ways the 20th century was the only era of the monopoly megaphone broadcast media, and it was an era that came to an end with the arrival of the conversational internet. It is no longer possible for the mainstream media to shape public opinion as it once could, because fewer and fewer people are paying any attention to it.

I don’t live in the USA, but I find the treatment of Donald Trump in the US mainstream media to be utterly sickening. He is, after all, the duly elected President of the United States. So I’m not at all surprised to learn that the US mainstream media is losing customers at the same sort of rate as the UK mainstream media. They have no-one but themselves to blame.

The only real question is: How long will it take for the mainstream media to die?

Posted in Uncategorized | Tagged , , | 5 Comments

The Virtue of Poverty

Yesterday Roobeedoo drew attention to a news report:

Man ‘whose throat was slit for cigarette’ named as dad who doted on his daughter

It’s not at all clear what happened. But it seems that this was an argument between two smokers. One had some cigarettes, and the other wanted one of them, and they got into an argument, and one of them wound up dead.

Putting up the price of cigarettes creates an artificial scarcity of tobacco. Some people become unable to afford them. And the only way they can get them is to beg them off people who can afford them. And if they can’t get them that way, then they’ll steal them. And if they have to steal, then they may also have to kill.

So next we’re going to see smokers killing other smokers to get their tobacco.

Is this what Tobacco Control wants? Perhaps it is. Perhaps the intention is to not only set smokers against antismokers, but also set smokers against smokers, and get them to kill each other off. After all, if they’re trying to stamp out smoking, they’re trying to stamp out smokers.

But the creation of artificial shortages of tobacco (or anything else) impoverishes people. It’s makes them poor. But of course you don’t tell them that you’re making them poor: you tell them that you’re making them “healthy”.

And aren’t “progressives” these days really just setting out to make people poor? For to raise the price of tobacco and alcohol and sugar and chocolate and meat is to impoverish people. And if the price of fuel and oil and coal and gas are also raised, to fight “global warming”, that’s a further impoverishment. And if cars are banned, and people must walk or ride bicycles, that’s yet another impoverishment.

The Gilets Jaunes protests in France began when Emmanuel Macron raised the tax on fuel in order to combat “climate change”, and thereby deliberately impoverished the French people.

For the past few centuries, progress has largely seen to entail raising the standard of living. But our new progressives now wish to lower the standard of living. We are not to have more: we are to have less. And the less we have, the more virtuous we will be. For virtue lies in poverty, not in wealth.

And the crime of Donald Trump is not only that he is a very wealthy man, but that he wants to make other people wealthy as well. Making America Great Again above all means making America rich and prosperous again.

The idea the peculiar virtue of poverty is one that is found in Christian asceticism. A few searches turned up several references, among them:

‘The poor will have the Gospel preached to them’ (Matt 11:6), we read in Scripture, precisely as one of the signs which mark the arrival of the Kingdom of God. Those who do not love and practice the virtue of poverty do not have Christ’s spirit. This holds true for everyone. For the hermit who retires to the desert; and for the ordinary Christian who lives among his fellow men, whether he enjoys the use of this world’s resources or is short of many of them.


St. Teresa Margaret could be a model for all who strive to grow in virtue. She approached the exercise of all the virtues in an intelligent and carefully planned manner. The little table in her cell contained many small scraps of paper with her resolutions carefully written out as reminders to her of her plan of action. The particulars in her practice of the virtues of poverty, chastity and obedience may not be wholly imitable for us who live outside the monastery but the motives which underlie her practices are the motives which drive us all in our spiritual lives, the desire to love and serve God and neighbor.


Pope Francis started ad libbing in Havana, and as often happens, when he speaks from the heart, confusion followed. Attending evening prayers with a group of priests, seminarians, monks and nuns, he went off script and spoke passionately about poverty…

While the pope’s unplanned comments are inspiring and moving, they could be open to misunderstanding, for he praised poverty in glowing terms. “Our Holy Mother Church is poor” the pope said. “God wants her poor as he wanted our Mother Mary poor. Love poverty as a mother…”

So if you want to know why modern progressives regard themselves as being so deeply virtuous, it is because, like Pope Francis and St Francis before him, they see virtue in poverty. And many of them are especially virtuous in that they do not selfishly seek this virtuous poverty for themselves, but instead selflessly only for other people. So it’s perfectly all right for Al Gore to jet around the world promoting the need to cut carbon dioxide emissions, and for the world to thereby be impoverished. Al Gore may not be virtuously poor himself, but he can reduce lots of other people to virtuous poverty.

And it’s the same with Michael Bloomberg and all the other virtuous millionaires, as they set out to impoverish the world by taking away its tobacco and its alcohol and its sugar and its chocolate.

Posted in Uncategorized | Tagged , , , | 7 Comments

Old Friend

I got this off Google street view yesterday. It was like seeing an old friend:

Back when I lived in Devon 10 years ago, I used to sit for hours by this river, under the trees on the left, with a beer and a cigarette, gazing at the water, thinking about absolutely nothing.

Discovering this river was the only good thing that came out of the smoking ban. For years beforehand I used to sit inside the pub with a beer and a cigarette, but after the ban I always sat outside, usually down by the river, at one of the wooden tables beside it.

I got fascinated by the river. It was always changing. Some days it was in deep, fast-flowing flood. But mostly it was just like the placid view above. And sometimes it dwindled away to a narrow stream curling through the rocks on its bottom.

Some of the rocks were quite large. They’d arrive one day, and sit for months immobile, and then they’d be gone again, swept downstream on a flood.

And when the river flooded, as it did from time to time, it could fill the pub. There were signs inside the pub showing how high the water had risen in one year or other. It happened every 20 years or so. They had to change all the carpets when that happened.

Eventually I explored the whole river from end to end, from where it began as a narrow stream in the hills above, to where it discharged swollen into the sea.

Water is astonishing stuff.

I think of rivers as living things. They’re always moving, very purposefully, in one particular direction. And they have their moods, which vary from the playful to the angry. And they can be quite vocal. either quietly babbling, or loudly roaring. What else is needed to be alive? Who says that living things need cells or DNA to be alive? Rivers have neither.

And there were always things happening on the river. There were always leaves floating on it, journeying side by side. The occasional boat. And there were ducks. And fish. And dragonflies. And eddies and ripples and shadows. It was like watching a show. And I could watch for hours.

I miss the river.

Posted in Uncategorized | Tagged | 5 Comments

The Bullying Bastards in Tobacco Control

I came across this in ZeroHedge yesterday:

The following, written in 1940  [by Ludwig von Mises], is excerpted from Interventionism, An Economic Analysis, which was originally part of Nationaloekonomie, the German predecessor to Human Action.

Hitler, Stalin, and Mussolini constantly proclaim that they are chosen by destiny to bring salvation to this world. They claim they are the leaders of the creative youth who fight against their outlived elders. They bring from the East the new culture which is to replace the dying Western civilization. They want to give the coup de grace to liberalism and capitalism; they want to overcome immoral egoism by altruism; they plan to replace the anarchic democracy by order and organization, the society of “classes” by the total state, the market economy by socialism. Their war is not a war for territorial expansion, for loot and hegemony like the imperialistic wars of the past, but a holy crusade for a better world to live in. And they feel certain of their victory because they are convinced that they are borne by “the wave of the future.”

In fact Hitler’s war was one of territorial expansion, for loot and hegemony just like the imperialistic wars of the past. And so were Mussolini’s wars in Libya and Ethiopia. Nor was Stalin any better. There was nothing “holy” about any of them. Nor was there anything “altruistic”.

They were all just loudmouth bullying bastards. And they were fought against by the Western Allies precisely because they were bullying bastards. That’s the only way to defeat such people.

Are things any different today? Isn’t much the same attempt being made to create “a better world” by another bunch of bullying bastards. Antismoking bullying bastards. Green bullying bastards. Global warming alarmist bullying bastards. European Union bullying bastards. They’re all trying to demolish an old culture and replace it with a new culture. And they always see themselves as “the wave of the future.”

Neither Hitler nor Mussolini nor Stalin actually managed to create a new culture. All they left in their wake was hideous destruction.

If there’s one slight difference today it’s that, while there are lots of bullying bastards around these days, there don’t seem to be any truly loudmouth bullying bastard leaders among them. There’s nobody on the “progressive” left in the USA or Europe at present with any leadership qualities. Hillary Clinton? Bernie Sanders? Jeremy Corbyn? Jean-Claude Juncker? They’re all wet rags. There’s nothing inspirational about any of them.

And that’s maybe because we’re living in a different time than Hitler and Mussolini and Stalin. Because back then people really did believe that they were living in the dawn of a new age. They really thought that they could create a better world, if they simply made the effort to do so, breaking however many eggs it took. Yet as always they only succeeded in making a far worse world.

And it’s in that disillusioned world in which we live today. My post-war generation were never really trying to create a new culture or a new world: we were instead trying to stop it getting very much worse than it already was. The Campaign for Nuclear Disarmament was a campaign to stave off what then looked like an imminent global nuclear war. GreenPeace and Friends of the Earth were campaigning against the despoliation of the Earth. Global warming alarmists are trying to stop us from all being boiled alive. They are all, in one way or other, trying to stop something bad happening, rather than to make something good happen. The “progressive” left no longer has any vision of Progress. They have nothing new in mind. Hitler and Mussolini and Stalin at least all had some sort of (rather hideous and twisted) vision of Progress: their successors have none.

And someone like Donald Trump on the populist right is out to Make America Great Again. And to do that is to try to return America to one of its past incarnations, and in so doing reverse the tide of history. So also with the rising populism in Europe which is increasingly set upon returning sovereignty to European states that had been ceded to the “progressive” EU: they are reversing the flow of history. It’s more or less as if the tidal wave of utopian progressivism that broke upon the world a century or so ago has now begun to recede, and to recede faster and faster. It’s what always happens when waves break on any beach.

Our modern progressives may not have any vision of Progress to guide them, but they are all still bullying bastards who believe that they can create some new world by pushing and shoving and bullying and browbeating people.

And in our current world, the greatest exemplars of these are the bullying bastards in Tobacco Control. For Tobacco Control engages in non-stop bullying all over the world. And everyone who works in Tobacco Control is a bullying bastard of one kind or other. Dame Sally Davies, stepping down from her role as England’s Chief Medical Officer, is a bullying bastard. And ASH’s Deborah Arnott is a bullying bastard. And Stanton Glantz is a bullying bastard. And Michael Bloomberg is a bullying bastard. They’re all bullying bastards, every single one of them.

But perhaps the very worst of these bullying bastards was the man I mentioned yesterday: George Godber. A bronze bust of this awful man now resides in the Royal College of Physicians, which really ought to be renamed the Royal College of Bullying Bastards. Godber had the most complete contempt and hatred for smokers, as is illustrated in the following passage of his:

“The smoker” chooses for his own gratification to introduce into his own personal micro-environment the agent that will do him harm. What we are trying to do is to persuade him that that voluntary act is not only a long term threat to his future, but also an inducement to others to adopt the same folly. We are in fact asking for an almost infinite number of acts at self-abnegation so that a dirty and dangerous habit can be eliminated from our society.”

The smoker engages in “folly” for his own “self-gratification” as he engages in a “dirty” and dangerous “habit”: The contempt for smokers is palpable. And everything Godber ever said about them was always laced with the same bile. And he set out to bully and browbeat and exile and defame smokers at every possible opportunity.

The man was an extremely nasty bully. And he helped populate the world with bullying bastards just like he was. And we must fight these bastards just like we once fought Hitler and Mussolini and Stalin. And we must defeat them. We must utterly destroy Tobacco Control.

For what is their idea of Progress? Their grand, empty vision of Progress is towards… “a smoke-free world”. What a stunted, vacuous dream! These people are going to find that the tide of history, that seemed to be flowing in one direction, is beginning to turn and flow in the opposite direction. And it will sweep them all away.

Posted in Uncategorized | Tagged , , | 17 Comments

Bye Bye Sally

These days we live in a world in which we are being told that everything is poisonous.

It started with tobacco. We’ve been being told for about 100 years that tobacco companies are “merchants of death”. We’ve been being told that they’re selling us a poison that will kill us.

But tobacco was just the start of it. For we’re now being told the same thing about alcohol. In addition to the tobacco companies trying to kill us, we learn that the brewers and distillers and wineries are also trying to kill us.

Do as I do, think about cancer before you have a glass of wine, says chief medical officer

Dame Sally Davies urges the public to follow her example, and think about the risks of cancer before deciding whether a glass of wine is worth it

And it doesn’t end there. For we’re also being told that meat and fat and sugar and chocolate and salt are killers too.

Walk into any bakery and you’ll find on sale all manner of cakes and buns and loaves. And all of them lethal. All of them carefully designed to kill you softly with each sweet mouthful.

And it’s not just food and drink that’s killing you. Every single car on the road is a death trap, and they all spew out thousands of tons of soot and carbon monoxide and, worst of all, carbon dioxide which is causing the Global Warming that is going to boil us all slowly to death.

We are told that oil companies and coal mines are almost as murderous as tobacco companies. And so are all the other industries churning out nothing but poison.

You can’t trust anyone, it seems. You can’t trust politicians. You can’t trust bankers. You can’t trust experts. And all news is now “fake news”.

Is it any wonder, in such a poisoned world, in which more or less everything is lethal, that there are people desperately searching for “safe spaces?”

Dame Sally Davies, who [no longer] happens to be Chief Medical Officer, is telling us that we can’t trust the food industry to sell us healthy food. And yet she wants to be trusted herself. Isn’t that what she’s doing when she “urges the public to follow her example”? Isn’t she saying “Trust me. And don’t trust any of the food and drink manufacturers I’ve been denouncing”?

But why should you trust someone who clearly has little or no trust in anyone else? Dame Sally Davies has been teaching distrust of entire industries. And if such distrust is taught by teachers, can it be any surprise if the teachers themselves become distrusted.

And, oddly enough, perhaps that’s exactly what has happened to her.  BMJ 8 February 2019:

Sally Davies steps down as England’s chief medical officer

Maybe it was just that her hypocrisy caught up with her in the end:

Britain’s top doctor has been terrorising moderate drinkers into giving up wine and lecturing women to consider every sip of alcohol a deadly step towards breast cancer.

But it appears Dame Sally Davies – the UK’s ‘nanny in chief’ who only this week urged others to ‘do as I do’ – has relaxed her killjoy approach to booze at home.

New photographs show the chief medical officer clutching a half-full champagne flute in the lounge of her £3 million London townhouse.

Will her replacement be any better? Probably not. After all, her predecessor was Sir Liam Donaldson, CMO from 1998 to 2010. Remember him? He was one of the prime movers for the UK public smoking ban and the swine flu fiasco.

Sir George Godber

Sally Davies is really just one of a long line of killjoys, the greatest of whom was none other than Sir George Godber, CMO from 1960 to 1973, and about whom I’ve often written. And about whom there is more here and here and here and here.

So bye bye Sally, and good riddance. I wonder if there’ll be a bronze bust of you in the RCP like the one of Sir George Godber?

P.S. James Delingpole on Sally Davies.

Posted in Uncategorized | Tagged | 10 Comments

Omnia Vincit Amor

A thought:

Smokers love tobacco. They love pipes and cigars and cigarettes. And they love smoking.

And antismokers hate tobacco. They hate pipes and cigars and cigarettes. And they hate smoking.

The difference between the two is the difference between love and hate.

What is the difference between love and hate?

It is said that Love Conquers All. But why should it? Aren’t love and hate symmetrical opposites? Aren’t they equally powerful? And isn’t hate defeating love right now, as the antismokers ban smoking everywhere?

But there’s at least one important big difference between love and hate. And that is that while hate is destructive, love is constructive. If you hate someone or something, you are trying to destroy them. But if you love someone or something, you will be trying to enhance and magnify and build them.

So, for example, if you love gardens, you’ll probably end up with a lovely garden full of flowers and shrubs and trees and lawns and ponds. But if you hate gardens, you’ll end up with a barren wasteland. You’ll end up with nothing.

And that’s why the love of smokers for smoking and tobacco will eventually triumph over the antismokers’ hate for those things. The antismokers can only destroy things. And in the end there’ll be nothing left for them to destroy. They will leave nothing to the world that comes after them, because they never created anything. But the smokers who love pipes and cigars and cigarettes, and smoking and smoky pubs and cafes, will carry on recreating those things that the antismokers have destroyed.

Or, to return to the garden. once the garden-haters have killed off all the plants, and left a wasteland behind them, the plants will eventually re-colonise the barren land, and repopulate it with flowers and bushes and trees and pastures, because plants are constructive rather than destructive. So also, once the smoke-haters have killed off all the pubs and cafes, they will be reconstructed by smoke-lovers. It may take a long time, but that is what will eventually happen.

Because there is an asymmetry between love and hate, which is the asymmetry between the constructive and the destructive. And there’s a further asymmetry between the constructive and the destructive, which is that it usually takes a long time to construct anything, but only a short time to destroy it. It may take months or years to construct a beautiful palace, but only a few minutes to burn it to the ground. And because destruction is quick, it is short-lived. Once everything has been destroyed, the destruction stops. And once the destruction stops, slow reconstruction immediately starts.

So once the short-lived destruction of smoky pubs and bars and cafes by smoke-hating antismokers has ended, they’ll start slowly springing back into existence. And they’ll spring back to life because some people love smoky pubs and bars and cafes, just like some people love gardens, or cities, or countries.

Love Conquers All is a translation of a line in Virgil’s Eclogues. These days it’s usually written as Amor Vincit Omnia, but in the original poem it appears as Omnia Vincit Amor.

The full line in Virgil reads:

Omnia vincit amor: et nos cedamus amori — Virgil, Ecl. 10.69

i.e. “Love conquers all; let us, too, yield to love!” (transl. Rushton Fairclough)

Posted in Uncategorized | Tagged , | 13 Comments