The Plastic Hippo

February 8, 2015

In off the Broon

Filed under: Politics,Science,Society,World — theplastichippo @ 3:00 am
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Globalization, for all its efficacious benefits, has resulted in some odd consequences. Once we realise that a reduction in the milk chocolate content in a Cadbury Cream Egg is nothing more than a marketing ploy to flog Easter confections in January, we can understand that global economics is not a plot but is merely market driven.

Consider the latest marketing ploy regarding Newcastle Brown Ale. The pride of the Tyne and Student Union favourite; this fine ale once slaked the thirsts of coal miners, shipwrights and engineers. Sadly, ships are now built in Taiwan and coal is carried to Newcastle all the way from China. However, unlike the Silk Road or the Slave Trade, it`s not all one way traffic. (more…)

January 18, 2015

The Beagle has landed

Filed under: Science,World — theplastichippo @ 3:00 am
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Even with imaginations the size of a galaxies, H G Wells, Isaac Asimov or Arthur C Clarke could never have concocted a scenario in which the planet Mars is conquered by a bloke called Colin from Bristol.

When, on Christmas Day 2003, contact with the Beagle 2 Martian Lander was lost, a whole load of ridicule was heaped upon the failed project. With the crystal clear clarity that only hindsight can offer, bar room astrophysicists knew all along that the British would fail to guide a space craft to the red planet. Even if it cost a fraction of similar attempts at planetary exploration, 50 million quid was a complete waste of money and some wiseacres blissfully unaware of Darwin`s Theory of Evolution highlighted the stupidity of naming the mission after a breed of dog. Most derisory laughter was, however, directed at the mission director and the commission inquiry into the failure blamed his management of the project as a contributory factor in the loss of the spacecraft. (more…)

December 3, 2014

Principia Mathematica



Somewhere in the nebulous goldilocks zone between mathematics and fairy tales, there exists a species dedicated to analysing statistics for political purposes. For all its richness, the English language has yet to develop a collective noun for statisticians busily blowing the smoke and polishing the mirrors that their political masters will use to prove that “up” is the new “down” and “new” is the old “old”. (more…)

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