Secret Scotland

If it's secret, and in Scotland…

The Doomsday Clock is stuck at two minutes to midnight – If you have anything left on your bucket list, do it now, because the world is close to annihilation

If you have anything left on your bucket list, do it now, because the world is close to annihilation. That’s according to the Bulletin of the Atomic Scientists.

Check the current Doomsday Clock here.

I can’t believe I see this as ‘Good News’, but with the Orange Moron still somehow in power in the US, we can only be thankful that the clock has not moved CLOSER to midnight.

As one who ‘came through’ the Cold War and has been to various nuclear bunkers that were active during their lifetime, it’s one of the saddest things to see that this clock spent most of that period so far from midnight, yet has now moved so close.

Perhaps there is some truth or wisdom from those who said the Cold War was actually a ‘Good Thing’, as it kept minds focussed on a common cause (to somehow end it), and that its demise was not, in fact, the great thing many hailed it as.

Little point in me wasting time rewriting this, a quote is all that is needed…

The “new abnormal” the world is facing from risks like nuclear war and climate change has led the symbolic Doomsday Clock to be frozen at the closest it has ever been to midnight.

The clock, created by the Bulletin of the Atomic Scientists (BAS) in 1947, intends to warn of impending disasters.

Its 2019 setting was announced on Thursday – staying in the same perilous position it was set at last year.

The BAS has warned we are “normalising a very dangerous world”.

It marks only the third year the clock has been so close to midnight – first reaching the position in 1953 after the US and the Soviet Union tested highly destructive hydrogen bombs.

Why has it stayed the same?

In Thursday’s announcement in Washington, representatives from the Bulletin said the clock’s maintained position was “bad news indeed”.

Doomsday Clock frozen at two minutes to apocalypse

2019 Doomsday Clock

2019 Doomsday Clock

Comments on the ‘time’…

“Though unchanged from 2018, this setting should be taken not as a sign of stability but as a stark warning to leaders and citizens around the world,” BAS President and CEO, Rachel Bronson, said.

“This new abnormal is simply too volatile and too dangerous to accept,” Ms Bronson warned at the unveiling.

Former California governor Jerry Brown, who serves as BAS executive chair, also cautioned: “We’re playing Russian roulette with humanity.”

The group cites nuclear weapons and climate change as the two major ongoing threats to mankind – and warned their risks were being “exacerbated” by the “increased use of information warfare to undermine democracy around the world”.

Herb Lin, a senior research scholar for cyber policy and security from Stanford University, spoke about the particular risks from “fake news” at Thursday’s announcement.

“It’s a terrible world in which rage and fantasy replace truth,” he cautioned.

I think of my own observation, where those who spread the worst ‘rage and fantasy’ do so under the guise of ‘Free Speech’, which they claim as a ‘right’, and avoid all references to ‘responsibility’, as that aspect does not suit them.

See the disgusting Alex Jones and his toxic Infowars project to get an idea of what I have in mind.

Can’t wait for next year’s number – if we’re still here.


24/01/2019 Posted by | Civilian, Cold War, military | | Leave a comment

They grow up so fast


24/01/2019 Posted by | photography | | Leave a comment

Good news for Calton sustainable transport

Yet ANOTHER good ‘Poke in the eye with a sharp stick’ for the pathetic cycling/transport activists I’ve been calling out recently, with their endless whining which claims ‘Nothing’ is being done to improve transport in Glasgow.

They really must think people are mugs.

I didn’t even know this particular project was coming, although I may have unwittingly mentioned some small parts in previous posts, without realising there was more.

If so, then there may be valid criticism of Glasgow City Council and the other groups and organisations involved in these initiatives, for failing to get the message out, and make sure it is widely known.

It seems that work is set to being on improvement totalling some £1.3 million to make main roads around the Barras more people-friendly. This is expected to start in spring/summer 2019 and be completed in 2020.

Glasgow councillors are being asked to accept £300,000 of funding from sustainable transport organisation Sustrans so that the full range of proposed public realm improvements can go ahead.

As I travel these roads fairly often these days, I can attest to the fact that the existing layout is badly in need of an update to modernise it and make it more friendly for users.

I hope this doesn’t spoil some of the fun though – it can be amusing to see people unfamiliar with the area wonder what is going on when the local fire station goes into action. It’s hidden out of sight up a side street, but has extra lights on the main road to give its vehicles priority to access the main road.

A city council report states: “A key aim is to improve connectivity between the Barras and the city centre by prioritising pedestrians and cyclists and by reducing the dominance of cars and other vehicles.”

Measures will include putting in traffic lights at the junction at the north of Moir Street, above, widening pavements, resurfacing and the introduction of a 20 mph zone.

As a condition of funding (to make up an anticipated shortfall), Sustrans Scotland want extra improvements carried out, particularly around the Charlotte Street/London Road junction. The report states: “The proposed design has been amended to reflect this.”

Funny, I find that junction is fairly handy, and already has cycle lanes and traffic lights.

More: WIDER Pavements And New Traffic Lights Among Calton Public Realm Measures

Later: £300k funding boost for ongoing Barras regeneration project

I wonder if this street survey camera I spotted ages ago was involved?

Gallowgate Streetwise Camera Barrowland

Gallowgate Streetwise Camera Barrowland

24/01/2019 Posted by | Civilian, council, Transport | , , , | Leave a comment

Another big name for Kelvingrove – Leonardo da Vince arrives in February

Leonardo da Vinci

Leonardo da Vinci

Kelvingrove seems to be attracting some big names for its temporary exhibits nowadays.

Next on the list is Leonardo da Vinci, part of a nationwide event that marks the 500th anniversary of the death of Leonardo da Vinci.

This sees some 144 of the Renaissance master’s greatest drawings in the Royal Collection being displayed simultaneously in twelve venues across the UK from 1 February to 6 May 2019, with different works on show in each of the participating museums and galleries.

Kelvingrove Art Gallery & Museum is the only Scottish venue to host one of the exhibitions of twelve drawings, and entry to the exhibition is included as part of the normal free admission (thank goodness).

There is a later exhibition: 22 November 2019 – 15 March 2020 – exhibition of 80 drawings at The Queen’s Gallery, Palace of Holyroodhouse, Edinburgh, but that is separate, and comes with a ticket price.

Details from the Royal Collection Trust:

Leonardo da Vinci: A Life in Drawing, a nationwide event, will give the widest-ever UK audience the opportunity to see the work of this extraordinary artist. 12 drawings selected to reflect the full range of Leonardo’s interests – painting, sculpture, architecture, music, anatomy, engineering, cartography, geology and botany – will be shown at each venue in Belfast, Birmingham, Bristol, Cardiff, Glasgow, Leeds, Liverpool, Manchester, Sheffield, Southampton and Sunderland, with a further venue to be announced.

Following the exhibitions at our partner venues, in May 2019 the drawings will be brought together to form part of an exhibition of over 200 sheets at The Queen’s Gallery, Buckingham Palace, the largest exhibition of Leonardo’s work in over 65 years. A selection of 80 drawings will then travel to The Queen’s Gallery, Palace of Holyroodhouse in November 2019, the largest group of Leonardo’s works ever shown in Scotland.

24/01/2019 Posted by | Civilian, council | , , | Leave a comment

Today is Peanut Butter Day

24 January is Peanut Butter Day.

Peanut butter is an interesting history, said to date back to Aztec times. They mashed roasted peanuts into a paste.

Moving forward, George Washington Carver is often credited for inventing peanut butter, but he didn’t, he promoted more than 300 uses for peanuts, among other crops such as soy beans and sweet potatoes.

The actual invention of peanut butter, its process of manufacture and the machinery used to make it, can be credited to at least three doctors/inventors. In 1884 Marcellus Gilmore Edson of Canada patented peanut paste, the finished product from milling roasted peanuts between two heated surfaces. In 1895 Dr. John Harvey Kellogg (the creator of Kellogg’s cereal) patented a process for creating peanut butter from raw peanuts. He marketed it as a healthy protein substitute for patients without teeth. In 1903, Dr. Ambrose Straub of St. Louis, Missouri, patented a peanut-butter-making machine. In 1922, chemist Joseph Rosefield invented a process for making smooth peanut butter that kept the oil from separating by using partially hydrogenated oil. In 1928 he licensed his invention to the company that created Peter Pan peanut butter. And in 1932 he began producing his own peanut butter under the name Skippy.

Far too complicated – I just like the stuff.

And, as per my post last year, regret not having tried it sooner.

I’ve found my own favourite peanut butter treat, which involves a digestive biscuit.

Peanut butter on biscuits

Peanut butter on biscuits

24/01/2019 Posted by | Civilian | | Leave a comment


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