Red flags to prevent global warming by rogue politicians



POLITICAL BLOCKERS - In Britain in 1865, the legislative response to the increasing introduction of self-propelled vehicles on our roads was the Locomotive Act (sometimes known as the Red Flag Act). Amongst a number of provisions, it stipulated that self-propelled vehicles needed to be proceeded with a man walking 60 yards ahead carrying a red flag to warn other road users of the vehicles approach. The objective of powerful stakeholders was to hinder progress to protect their investments in horses, carriages and trains.



Hans Brinker, or The Silver Skates (full title: Hans Brinker; or, the Silver Skates: A Story of Life in Holland) is a novel by American author Mary Mapes Dodge, first published in 1865. The novel takes place in the Netherlands and is a colorful fictional portrait of early 19th-century Dutch life, as well as a tale of youthful honor.

The book's title refers to the beautiful silver skates to be awarded to the winner of the ice-skating race Hans Brinker hopes to enter. The novel introduced the sport of Dutch speed skating to Americans, and in U.S. media Hans Brinker is still considered the prototypical speed skater.

The book is also notable for popularizing the story of the little Dutch boy who plugs a dike with his finger.


A short story within the novel has become well known in its own right in popular culture. The story, read aloud in a schoolroom in England, is about a Dutch boy who saves his country by putting his finger in a leaking dike. The boy stays there all night, in spite of the cold, until the villagers find him and repair the dike.

In the book, the boy and the story are called simply "The Hero of Haarlem". Although the hero of the dike-plugging tale is nameless in the book, Hans Brinker's name has sometimes erroneously been associated with the character.

This small tale within Hans Brinker or The Silver Skates has generated numerous versions and adaptations in media. American poet Phoebe Cary—at whose New York City literary gatherings Dodge was a regular guest — wrote a lengthy poem about it called "The Leak in the Dike", published posthumously in 1873, which has been widely anthologized in books of poetry for schoolchildren. Cary also gave the boy a name: Peter.

The tale has also inspired full-fledged children's books of its own, which include:

- The Hole in the Dike, by Norma Green (1974)

- The Boy Who Held Back the Sea, by Lenny Hort (1987)


For tourism purposes, statues of the fictional dike-plugging boy have been erected in Dutch locations such as Spaarndam, Madurodam and Harlingen. The statues are sometimes mistakenly titled "Hans Brinker"; others are known as "Peter of Haarlem". The story of the dike-plugging boy is, however, not widely known in the Netherlands—it is a piece of American, rather than Dutch, folklore.





Now what about electric cars and service stations for instant recharging?






Versions of the story prior to Hans Brinker appear in several English-language publications from 1850 onward, including the following British and American publications:

In the United Kingdom:

- An 1850 edition of Sharpe's London Journal of Entertainment and Instruction: "The Little Hero of Haarlem"

- The February 23, 1850, edition of Eliza Cook's Journal: "The Brave Little Hollander"

- The 1855 edition of Beeton's Boys' Own magazine: "The Little Dutch Hero"

- The 'Sixth' Standard Reader, compiled by J. S. Laurie (1863): "The Little Dutch Hero"

In the U.S.:

- Harper's Magazine, August 1850: "The Little Hero of Haarlem"

- The 1852 edition of The Ladies' Repository: "The Little Hero of Haarlem"

- In 1854, Literary Gem: Van Court's New Monthly Magazine: "The Little Hero of Haarlem"

- Julia Matilda Olin's 1856 book, A Winter at Wood Lawn

- In 1857, McGuffey's New High School Reader for Advanced Classes: "The Little Hero of Haarlem"

- In 1858, The Rhode Island Schoolmaster: "The Boy at the Dike"

- In 1858/1859, Sargent's School Monthly: "The Boy at the Dike"

The actual authorship and genesis of the story of the boy and the dike is probably the story "Le Petit Éclusier" by prolific French children's author Eugenie Foa (1796–1852), first published in 1848. This appeared in an English translation by Sarah West Lander, titled "The Little Dykeman" and attributed to Foa, in the monthly magazine Merry's Museum for Boys and Girls in March 1868.

Although Dodge was not the originator of the story of the boy and the dike, the immense popularity of her novel Hans Brinker, or The Silver Skates made the story very widely known. The story within a story of the nameless little boy's heroism also parallels and emphasizes Hans Brinker's own heroism in the novel. 












You may realize from this brief history that politicians and policies follow technology. Politicians and policy makers do not create the technology. The rule makers simply make it harder for the advancement of the human race, as they build their part to justify their existence.


Progress depends on inventors and engineers, biologists and researchers. One way to limit the braking effect of all the Red Tape generated by the rule makers, is to force them to Tell The Truth. We need Green Flag politicians who stand for the honesty and decency that is missing from politics today.






A famous marine chronometer



INSTITUTIONALIZATION - Study of the British Board of Longitude reveals more than just the story of an institution. It shows how economic interests influenced the political and scientific activities of a state. 

The Board of Longitude can be equated with the process of ever-increasing institutionalization, the aim of which was to steer knowledge production. In this way, the production of knowledge was closely linked to the state.


The reasons for this were changes within the "scientific landscape" of the United Kingdom and the concomitant struggle for supremacy in influencing the distribution of state support for the science of astronomy and other related scientific projects, the proof of which is that all the surviving papers come from the archives of the Royal Astronomers and their successors, as if John Harrison's solution was perceived as a threat to their dominance of science. John Harrison was thought of as a maverick, who was grudgingly provided financial support, instead of being generously funded to accelerate development.


We should always then look at the appointment of committees and the interests of their members, that should perhaps be recorded in a book declaring such interests such as to avoid potential conflicts. But there is no point in having such a book if there is no effective policing of the corruption that is inevitable where many can be made from technology for those in positions of trust.


Poor old John Harrison was caught up in this mire of subterfuge. But do not think for one minute, that it is any different today.







This is a wonderful story about an ordinary clockmaker from the country who took on the scientific experts in the City of London, the military and the political community and beat them to a standstill.


The bad news for our hero John Harrison, is that it took him all of his life to do so. The good news for millions of sailors is that navigation was improved saving lives, and that John's name will forever be associated with state sanctioned discrimination and political obstruction that became institutionalised.


We would thus urge the United Nations, European Union and G20 members to put in place the necessary policing to prevent contributing members of society from being sidelined. It is a sad fact that many of the great creators of this world are not conformists. People who don't conform are not understood and so become targets of derision, rather than receive the support that would make them more productive.






Poverty UN sustainability goals 1Zero hunger and food security UN SDG2Health and well being UN SDG3Education UN sustainable development goal 4Gender equaltiy for men and women UN SDG 5Sanitation and clean water for all SDG 6

Clean affordable energy for all UN sustainability goal 7Jobs and sustainable economic growth SDG 8Innovation in industry and sustainable infrastructure SDG 9Reduced inequalities for all sustainable development goal 10Cities and communities that are sustainable goal 11Consumption and production that is sustainable SDG 12

Action against climate change sustainable development goal 13Ocean and marine conservation UN sustainable development goals 14Biodiversity conserving life on land SDG 15Justice and institutional integrity for peace SDG 16Partnerships between governments and corporations SDG 17United Nations sustainable  development goals for 2030












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