Seven Samurai

Mastodon has a theme:


To which I contributed (

The Princess Bride


The Big Lebowski

Groundhog Day

Singin’ in the Rain


The Big Chill

I chose films which make me feel good to know they exist. I hug myself with glee when I think of them. Other lists of course are possible – favourite musicals, best 21st century, best drama, best romcom, or just numbers 8-14, 15-21 etc – and maybe I’ll do some of those as the mood takes me.

The ten commandments

“Conservative” political parties in western countries all share ten fundamental features.

  1. The haunting fear that someone, somewhere, may be happy, and a determination to put a stop to it.
  2. A policy that no limitation of any kind should be applied to the ever-rising profits of corporations, while insisting that it is never the right time for workers to have a pay rise (two policies that are not unrelated).
  3. A belief that any education of the lower orders is too much education.
  4. The firm conviction that the role of media in society is to present the beliefs of conservatives, all the beliefs of conservatives, and nothing but the beliefs of conservatives.
  5. The knowledge that religion is the handmaiden of conservative politics, particularly by labelling the rulers as being annointed by god, and convincing the poor that they will get their reward after death and not before.
  6. An attitude that anything in the environment you can’t make a buck from is disposable, anything you can make a buck from, ditto
  7. Brains replaced by calculating machines, set to measure the price of everything and the value of nothing.
  8. Have members who, by happy chance, are too old to personally fight in the wars which are an essential part of capitalism.
  9. A certainty that society has no place for scientists (referred to as experts) because conservative ideology is all they know and all they need to know.
  10. The sure and certain knowledge that all recent social and cultural developments are both evil and dangerous, and that there is no limit to the depth of time at which a preferred society will be found (Victorian? Medieval? Dark Ages? Roman? Egyptian? Prehistory?).

What’s past

… is prologue.

My book concerning fire in the Australian environment, extinction of the megafauna, and Indigenous interaction with the environment in general (and in total opposition to the works of Flannery, Pascoe and Gammage, among others), is available online.

All my individual publications in this field (and others) are available free online at

Also many of my older essays are still available here: