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« Season's greetings | Main | Into reverse »
Tuesday
Dec242013

Christmas cheer

There is more to life than conspicuous consumption, without a doubt, but take a look at this tweet from Richard Dixon of Friends of the Earth.

Mulled spice scented loo cleaner in Waitrose

I'm at a loss to understand how buying bleach with a slightly different scent in it represents "overconsumption". Or to comprehend the sheer joylessness of the tweet.

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Reader Comments (54)

joylessness of the 'twat' surely!

Dec 24, 2013 at 9:50 AM | Unregistered Commenterfragpig

Dear Lord,


Dixon at FoE, a misanthrope with a puritanical streak as wide as any green could go - "back to the fields for you all!"

Get love, get pissed, burn coal, use gas, electric, go for a drive in the 4x4, fly to an exotic idyll - eat all and send joy, give thanks for your good luck, for life itself - be happy: it's Christmas!!

Dec 24, 2013 at 9:53 AM | Unregistered CommenterAthelstan.

Why am I not surprised that he shops in Waitrose?

Pays well, the old green advocacy business.

Dec 24, 2013 at 9:53 AM | Unregistered CommenterNW

@fragpig - luckily I'd just finished my coffee..

Dec 24, 2013 at 9:55 AM | Unregistered CommenterFarleyR

Well, if Richard Dixon prefers the smell of chlorine over mulled spices then he's at liberty to say so. He can sniff what he likes. It's a free country.


I have my own idiosynchratic tastes. I like the smell of ammonia (in small amounts).

Dec 24, 2013 at 10:08 AM | Unregistered Commentermichaelhart

I love the smell of burning wood and my plants appreciate the ash and the carbon dioxide. It's a win-win situation, increasing my "carbon footprint" whilst greening my garden.

Dec 24, 2013 at 10:13 AM | Registered CommenterPhillip Bratby

I'm at a loss to understand how buying bleach with a slightly different scent in it represents "overconsumption".

Let me explain. The assumption here is that people will buy this form of smelly bleach and only make use of it for the two week Christmas period, and what they don't need they will just pour down the loo ;)

I've always thought that a business model where you make a product that people take home and pour down the drain can't be beaten!

Dec 24, 2013 at 10:20 AM | Registered Commentersteve ta

I am at a loss to understand why he is shopping at a supermarket. They all import a significant amount of their goods from overseas. Think of the carbon footprint!!

Surely, as a FoE of the Earth, he should be walking to the local farmers shops and sourcing all his food there?

Dec 24, 2013 at 10:33 AM | Unregistered CommenterTerryS

> I've always thought that a business model where you make a product that people take home and pour down the drain can't be beaten!

Jeremiah Colman beat it. When asked how he made a fortune from mustard he apparently said:

"I make my money from the mustard that people throw away on the sides of their plate"

Dec 24, 2013 at 10:44 AM | Unregistered CommenterTerryS

To get into Waitrose you need to be either called Simon or be wearing 2 items from the Boden catalogue :)

Dec 24, 2013 at 10:46 AM | Unregistered CommenterJack Hughes

What FoE should be complaining about is the amount of water in the product. Waitrose should be selling industrial strength bleach in large bottles to cut down the weight of the product, reduce transport costs, and make fewer shopping trips.

I guess Mr Dixon never got as far as "economies of scale" in Economics 101.

Dec 24, 2013 at 11:03 AM | Unregistered Commentermichaelhart

Dixon may have been sniffing some illegal substance prior to writing his dit. Shame on him, stupid man.

Dec 24, 2013 at 11:05 AM | Unregistered CommenterJohn Marshall

I think I'll rush out and buy some. Other evil things to be done:

Cook turkey in fossil-fuelled oven when we could have just had raw veg;
Drive 4 x 4 to see elderly parents when we could have just Skyped them;
Have heating on all day rather than sit at the table wearing overcoats;
Turn on television.

Merry Christmas and thanks for the tip, Richard.

Dec 24, 2013 at 11:43 AM | Unregistered CommenterDavid S

Thinking about what michaelhart said, I wonder if you can get bleach that smells of napalm ?
It'd be excellent marketing you could call it

Apocalypse Bleach.

Dec 24, 2013 at 11:43 AM | Unregistered CommenterJohn Barrett

It seems to me that caring for the environment is itself a luxury. Surely a significant proportion of the population need to have a significant amount of disposable income in order to be able to pay over the odds for goods that are manufactured without harming the environment. For instance, it must be far cheaper to just dump factory waste in the nearest river than to dispose of it in a responsible manner. If the greens succeed in reducing us all to penury, the environment will probably be the biggest casualty.

Dec 24, 2013 at 11:45 AM | Unregistered CommenterStonyground

Always needs something to whinge about!

Dec 24, 2013 at 11:57 AM | Unregistered CommenterAdam Gallon

The moron has mistaken Hestons mulled wine cider as floor cleaner!

Regards

Mailman

Dec 24, 2013 at 12:13 PM | Unregistered CommenterMailman

"It seems to me that caring for the environment is itself a luxury. [..] If the greens succeed in reducing us all to penury, the environment will probably be the biggest casualty."

A good many years ago I read a book by Anthropologist Olin Turnbull: "The Mountain People". Simultaneously fascinating, it was also one of the most depressing books I have ever picked up. He described the "Ik" people of Uganda as a people simply "too poor for morality". They had been kicked off their traditional hunting grounds to make it an 'animals only' zone. This appeared to have the (probably unintended) consequence of turning the Ik culture into an animal culture.

Dec 24, 2013 at 12:20 PM | Unregistered Commentermichaelhart

That should be "Colin Turnbull"

Dec 24, 2013 at 12:21 PM | Unregistered Commentermichaelhart

Just an aside, but a very happy Christmas to Andrew and all this blogs commenters who have kept me entertained and informed in equal measure this year. Oh and go easy on the bleach this Christmastime, you know you'll only regret it the next day 😀😀;-) All the best Steve

Dec 24, 2013 at 12:24 PM | Unregistered Commentersunderlandsteve

O/T but have we considered what we think the climate-related blog post of the year has been?

My nomination would be this gem by Sean Thomas from June this year:

http://blogs.telegraph.co.uk/news/seanthomas/100222487/when-it-comes-to-climate-change-we-have-to-trust-our-scientists-because-they-know-lots-of-big-scary-words/

'First, I asked Stephen Belcher, the head of the Met Office Hadley Centre, whether the recent extended winter was related to global warming. Shaking his famous “ghost stick”, and fingering his trademark necklace of sharks’ teeth and mammoth bones, the loin-clothed Belcher blew smoke into a conch, and replied,

“Here come de heap big warmy. Bigtime warmy warmy. Is big big hot. Plenty big warm burny hot. Hot! Hot hot! But now not hot. Not hot now. De hot come go, come go. Now Is Coldy Coldy. Is ice. Hot den cold. Frreeeezy ice til hot again. Den de rain. It faaaalllll. Make pasty.”'

The beauty of this effort, for me, was that it twitted ecofascists perfectly without in any way misrepresenting what these wankers actually believe.

Has anyone any other nominations?

Dec 24, 2013 at 12:25 PM | Unregistered CommenterJustice4Rinka

@Jack Hughes

Salisbury Waitrose - Alice, Geoffrey, Barbour

Dec 24, 2013 at 12:46 PM | Unregistered Commenterfilbert cobb

Friends (as in "with friends like these ....") of the Earth indulging in a bit of Christmas interwebs overconsumption and time-theft. Horrible careerists pikeys.

Dec 24, 2013 at 12:59 PM | Unregistered Commenterchippy

Not that Enemies of the People are ever much concerned with the accuracy of their statements, I fear Richard may be mistaken. I can find no trace on the Waitrose website of such a product, even after correcting the likely name to 'mulled wine / mulling spice scented toilet cleaner'. The nearest is a Reckitt Benckiser product, an Airwick Crystal Air freshener having a scent described as 'mulled wine'.

Dec 24, 2013 at 1:06 PM | Unregistered CommenterPhil D

All civilisations eventually fail but we don't know why, well until this tweet anyway ;)

Greenies exist because of large disposable incomes allowing people to divorce themselves from reality and thinking the Nobal hunter gather is the way to go. But if they go this way they will be extinct, once feeding mouths becomes the prime and only priority.

Be careful what you wish for !!!!

Dec 24, 2013 at 1:32 PM | Registered CommenterBreath of Fresh Air

Ed Milliband ,David Cameron,Cleggy Johnathon Poritt ,Arch Bishop of Canterbury and Prince Charles tucking into their Vegetarian Nut Roast instead of Yummy Christmas Turkey and stuffing their faces with Mince Pies

Santa will only be bringing the kids hand made Wicker Baskets with a few Organic Fair Trade Oranges and a Gift Voucher from Lush no GTA 4 ,Call of Duty, WII Fit Dance Craze 2013 Xbox 1 or PS4

.All having a nice Green Grinch Sustainable Christmas.

Yeah right

The Eco-nezzer Scrooges

Dec 24, 2013 at 2:19 PM | Unregistered Commenterjamspid

You would have thought that such a fervent anti capitalist would shop at the Co-op. Oh wait, I bet there isn't one within miles of where he lives, mentally or physically.

Dec 24, 2013 at 2:30 PM | Unregistered CommenterNW

One should not use loo cleaner, or indeed loos, in a perfect, re-wilded world of the kind FoE and Monbiot seek. Just take a dump on your veggie patch, like they do in rural India. Bliss.

Dec 24, 2013 at 2:31 PM | Unregistered CommenterDavid Rose

He is Scottish based and there are hardly any Waitrose shops in Scotland so the probability is that he is driving there rather than supporting local High Street shops which you can walk to. Also you should support local producers and Waitrose is rather a graveyard of Scottish jobs with little evidence of any effort to source products locally.

Dec 24, 2013 at 2:42 PM | Unregistered CommenterAlex. Sinclair

http://www.ebay.co.uk/itm/Lush-Rare-Limited-Edition-Forum-Special-Chat-Party-Avowash-Shower-Gel-NA-Only-/261356933336?pt=UK_HeathBeauty_BathShowCons_RL&hash=item3cda1650d8

Look what i found on EBay

£39 for a second hand bottle of soap from Lush and i only went on there to get some SuperDrug and Boots gift vouchers for the Mrs for Christmas.Am i right in thinking they are chasing EBay for tax avoidance.

So who will be the first to ask Ed Davey tomorrow what he got for Christmas and was it Sustainable.

Dec 24, 2013 at 2:47 PM | Unregistered Commenterjamspid

J4R - just read out your post to gathered family. Screams of laughter all round, so kids seem to be fully converted now.

Dec 24, 2013 at 2:52 PM | Unregistered CommenterGrumpy

I would guess that he's concerned that too many of his followers are too dumb to distinguish it from the real thing and thus might hurt themselves.

Dec 24, 2013 at 3:47 PM | Unregistered CommenterJEM

Alex S, I don't think he has a car, being a Deep Green. Which suggests he can afford to live within walking distance of one of the few Waitrose stores in Scotland.

I'm not sure if he's suggesting that the Mulled Spice scent is particularly excessive or if he's objecting to scented products generally, there being in fact no practical difference between one scent and another, they have nothing to do with the description other than "smells like".

Dec 24, 2013 at 3:59 PM | Unregistered CommenterNW

Which suggests he can afford to live within walking distance of one of the few Waitrose stores in Scotland.
Since he lives in Edinburgh that gives him a choice of Morningside or Comely Bank. Either way, NW, you make a good point.
Which, of course, is why he can afford to fuss about the environment as argued above. Working people on close to minimum wage can't afford to make the sort of feelgood gesture that goes with being a serious enviro-parasite.

Dec 24, 2013 at 5:03 PM | Registered CommenterMike Jackson

He is Scottish based and there are hardly any Waitrose shops in Scotland so the probability is that he is driving there

Probably saw it on the internet or is retweeting somebody else's outrage. Getting outraged on one's own behalf is so passé .

Dec 24, 2013 at 5:12 PM | Unregistered Commenterkellydown

Most of the big green outfits are based in Edinburgh mainly because a) their main business relies on extracting public money from politicians and b) their principals wouldn't consider living anywhere else.

Dec 24, 2013 at 6:03 PM | Unregistered CommenterNW

Mike Jackson
My money is on Comely Bank

Dec 24, 2013 at 6:13 PM | Unregistered CommenterSandyS

A good friend of mine emails this morning to say:-

"Albeit a tad reluctantly, we have decided to follow the green trend and switch where possible to electronic Christmas cards..."

and later:-
[...] this change has meant an increase in trips abroad to lecture at various universities. During the year made twelve visits to Kufstein in Austria, and one to each of Madrid, Amsterdam, Split (in Croatia), Jyväskylä (in Finland), Salzgitter (in Germany), and Sochi (in Russia), plus a flying visit to Burnley (sic!)"

Not to mention:-
"Before you print please think about the ENVIRONMENT".

I'm sure it is really tough but someone has to do it.

Dec 24, 2013 at 7:11 PM | Unregistered Commentermartin brumby

SandyS
Yes. He'd get pretty short shrift from the 'fur coat 'n' nae knickers' brigade, I reckon. All very worthy on the surface and keeping every penny to themselves underneath.
Comely Bank's the better choice. They're the ones who like to be seen to be doing the right thing (at least if my sister-in-law's mother-in-law was anything to go by) even if they're not quite sure what the 'right thing' is.

Dec 24, 2013 at 7:32 PM | Registered CommenterMike Jackson

Unable to 'mull' himself, he is simply left with 'whine.'....The new puritans are not motivated by religion. They are motivated mostly by being thick.

Dec 24, 2013 at 8:35 PM | Unregistered Commenterfenbeagleblog

Could this be the product in question?
http://www.waitrose.com/shop/DisplayProductFlyout?productId=298811#.Urn4qNJdXTo

Essential Waitrose thick bleach mulled spice, 80p for 750ml. Not sure exactly what Mr Dixon is getting upset about, if so - the container's recyclable (HDPE, PP, paper) after all. :-)

Looking at the right-hand side of the screen, under "At a glance", you will find that the spicy bleach is apparently suitable (how?) for vegetarians, vegans and "those avoiding Nuts". The latter is useful to know, at any rate - want to avoid Friends of the Earth or similar people? Buy this product!

Dec 24, 2013 at 9:36 PM | Unregistered CommenterAlex Cull

Being a judgmental twit means never having to say you're sorry. Everybody else is wrong and owes you an apology.

Dec 24, 2013 at 10:32 PM | Unregistered Commenterjorgekafkazar

He is Scottish based and there are hardly any Waitrose shops in Scotland so the probability is that he is driving there

Using publicly available information from Companies House I can tell you that his nearest Waitrose is Comely Bank and it is 1 mile walking distance or 1.2 miles driving distance from his registered address, but since this address also happens to be the offices of "The People's Postcode Lottery" and the "Postcode Culture Trust" (of which he is a director) then I suspect that this is just a working address.

Dec 24, 2013 at 11:47 PM | Unregistered CommenterTerryS

How appropriate, that FoE should share an address with another organisation which makes its profits from the statistically ignorant.

Dec 25, 2013 at 10:01 AM | Unregistered CommenterNW

FoE are Puritans, whose objection to bear-baiting, you may remember, was not because of the suffering inflicted upon the bear, but because of the enjoyment of the onlookers...

Happy Christmas all!

Dec 25, 2013 at 11:37 AM | Registered Commenterjamesp

And with Boxing Day meets in mind, a similar argument applies to the eco-hypocrites' attitude to fox hunting.
Though that stance has been stolen by the anthropomorphs for whom foxes, badgers, polar bears, and baby seals are "cuddly animals" they presumably never have actually met any of them personally.
Confound their knavish tricks and tally ho!

Dec 25, 2013 at 12:31 PM | Registered CommenterMike Jackson

Any man who uses the word "loo" to describe a toilet has clearly been castrated.

Dec 25, 2013 at 1:22 PM | Unregistered CommenterDavid, UK

Dec 24, 2013 at 12:25 PM | Justice4Rinka

That was my favourite comment too. Inspired.

Dec 25, 2013 at 3:25 PM | Unregistered CommenterJimmy Haigh

Lest there be a rush to sanctimonious judgement, it should be mentioned that actually this was artisanal mulled spice scented loo cleaner. Prepared by an itinerant tribe, of Pictish descent, who forage in the suburbs of Edinburgh for spices and naturally disinfectant thistles, mulled spice scented loo cleaner is enjoyed by many in the Edinburgh region, mainly for its aphrodisiac properties.

Dec 25, 2013 at 10:12 PM | Unregistered CommenterZT

"Lest there be a rush to sanctimonious judgement, it should be mentioned that actually this was artisanal mulled spice scented loo cleaner. Prepared by an itinerant tribe, of Pictish descent, who forage in the suburbs of Edinburgh for spices and naturally disinfectant thistles..."

Sounds like a drink prepared by Burke and Hare...

Dec 25, 2013 at 10:57 PM | Unregistered Commentermichaelhart

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