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« Uncharted - Josh 366 | Main | The Bob-bot strikes again »

The slow, green way to recycle

The news that a vast, shiny, new state of the art recycling centre in Lancashire is to be mothballed after incurring "catastrophic losses" will not come as much of a surprise to anyone who keeps an eye on the green scene. A moment's thought by anyone with more than a couple of braincells to rub together leads to the inevitable conclusion that expending vast resources - energy, labour, capital, chemicals and the like - to turn low value items into even lower value items is not much of an economic proposition. With councils increasingly cash-strapped, it is becoming ever harder to sustain the illusion that recycling is anything other than virtue-signalling from middle-class poseurs.

Perhaps landfill needs to have its brand detoxified. Rather than wasting all those precious resources on collecting refuse to turn it into heaven knows what, let's use the power of Mother Nature to break down and recycle what can be broken down, leaving what is inert to cause no trouble to anyone. Yes, it will be slower than what passes for recycling now, but aren't greens in favour of using slower, more natural approaches whenever they can?

"Landfill: the slow, green way to recycle".


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Reader Comments (166)


The only way that you are likely to be able to comprehend what plastic paddy is on about, would be to imbibe a similar quantity of whatever pyschoactive substances he is taking.

But, would it be worth the effort?

Apr 12, 2016 at 7:38 PM | Registered CommenterSalopian

Do not take any mind inducing drugs.
Open the national accounts of your country and you will clearly observe provision for depreciation is added to Gdp.
It's there in black and white baby.
In Ireland it currently is 30billion + euros.
Much of this addition is responsible for "our boom"

It has of course no human value.

Apr 12, 2016 at 7:46 PM | Unregistered CommenterThe Dork of Cork

A job in Cork Corporation was much valued in the 70s & 80s.
They did very little work.... the machines did it.
They had enough tokens to drink the place dry.

Apr 12, 2016 at 7:56 PM | Unregistered CommenterThe Dork of Cork

From the Business Dictionary: Depreciation is the gradual conversion of the cost of a tangible capital asset or fixed asset into an operational expense (called depreciation expense) over the asset's estimated useful life.

In my (UK) business I was allowed 33% depreciation on computer equipment, for example.

Depreciation is an allowable legal accounting procedure to reflect a deterioration in an asset's value which, as a by product, reduces corporation tax; the amount was deducted from my gross profit, had no effect on my turnover, and the figure was not separately collected by the government, and therefore not "seen" by HMRC, the ONS etc. Depreciation is a measure of (reduction of) wealth, not turnover. GDP is the measure of a state's turnover, not wealth. My business's depreciation (reduction in value) was not added to UK GDP (UK turnover), and it is absurd to suggest it.

Apr 12, 2016 at 9:38 PM | Unregistered CommenterBudgie

I really can't decide what would be best.

1. Dork of Cork Bingo - sixteen often-used phrased arranged in a random 4x4 grid - cross 'em off as they appear - four in a line wins.
2. Dork of Cork Drinking Game - so many 'fingers' of drink to be consumed as each well-known phrase appears.
3. Dork of Cork Random Post Generator - feed a compilation of phrases into a programme which regurgitates them willy-nilly to produce yet another heap of horse sh*t masquerading as a meaningful contribution to this blog.

Trouble is, I think D of C himself has beaten us to No 3.

Apr 12, 2016 at 10:12 PM | Unregistered CommenterShindig

Shindig, 10:12pm: I think he's beaten us to No 2 as well, but probably cheating by using by consuming double 'fingers'.

Apr 12, 2016 at 10:27 PM | Registered CommenterSalopian

Shindig. A classic. But with one fatal flaw. Trying option 2 results in becoming so rat-a**ed so quickly that option 3 just fades awa...................

Apr 12, 2016 at 10:57 PM | Unregistered CommenterAlan Kendall

There is a peculiar love for landfills around here. Peculiar and somewhat ironic considering that this place certainly qualifies as a landfill for otherwise unrecyclable BigOil welfare rats.

Carry on.

Apr 12, 2016 at 10:59 PM | Unregistered CommenterAyla

Ayla, mutant Green Blob Fat Cats have eaten all the rats and have now set their sights on the timid mice.

If you squeak too loud, you're a toasted mouse sandwich.

Apr 12, 2016 at 11:29 PM | Unregistered Commentergolf charlie


Unfortunately up our way, the feral cats prefer to kill chickens, pheasants, voles, shrews, lizards, baby rabbits and song birds, rather than rats (a bit like the RSPB, FOE, etc).

Apr 12, 2016 at 11:59 PM | Registered CommenterSalopian

Shindig, Salopian & Alan Kendall

I think the confusion is caused by playing Steps 1, 2 and 3, before repeating Step 1. The following night, the sequence is repeated, but commencing with the final Step 1 from the night before, and again finishing on a fresh Step1.

Those minds able to remember, are not sure if that is how IPCC reports were written, but they do appear to have started with pre-determined conclusions, and then had to spend a lot of time, trying to work out how they might have got there.

Apr 13, 2016 at 12:02 AM | Unregistered Commentergolf charlie

Salopian, the Royal Society for the Protection of Birdmashers sees the continued existence of feral birds as a threat to their income stream and lifestyle. Ironically, as more members have failed to renew their subscriptions in disgust, they are being proved correct.

Apr 13, 2016 at 12:16 AM | Unregistered Commentergolf charlie

GC et al:

Step 3 should definitely be left to the plastic paddy himself, as Shindig has already said (10:12pm), the paddy wins. As far as Steps 1 and 2 are concerned, I wouldn't do Step 1, unless I was pi$$ed already and, if I was there would be no point in doing Step 2.

Apr 13, 2016 at 12:24 AM | Registered CommenterSalopian

golf charlie

You are being unkind. The Royal Society for the Protection of Bird Recyclers is more politically correct.

Apr 13, 2016 at 12:36 AM | Unregistered Commenteresmiff

Is there a DORK APP out there to help play Step 3? Without the help of integrated illogic circuits I fear that mortal man* would never even get close to winning. I realize that a computer programme like Crazy Stone, which plays Go, would not cut the mustard.

* women are not encouraged to participate in the Dork Games© Trying to play a combination of steps 1 and 2, can severely damage their multitasking skills. If they must join in, they must wear a distractor.

Apr 13, 2016 at 6:32 AM | Unregistered CommenterAlan Kendall


Your most recent Delphic utterance has spread confusion throughout the land. How can we discern your meaning?

Does your likening "this place" to a landfill refer to your sweet abode, or to this Bishopric?

Great minds ponder the implications. As do lawyers.

Apr 13, 2016 at 7:03 AM | Unregistered CommenterAlan Kendall

A bittersweet outcome for me. We locals didn't want the damn thing in the first place but it was foisted upon us nevertheless, at great expense. Wyre Borough Council needs its collective backside kicking. Hard!

Apr 13, 2016 at 7:15 AM | Unregistered CommenterLynne at Counting Cats

Alan Kendall
I haven't ploughed my way through three pages of comments yet so this may be behind times but there is quite a bit of open cast mining (Surfaced mined) in the UK, about 8 million tonnes. This meets with a great deal of opposition but leaves some fairly big holes which then have to be filled and landscaped. Why not use at least some of these sites?

Dundee has a fine example of land reclamation and how it benefits the city Dundee Riverside. Which cannot be added to in the current environmental climate unless it changes.

Apr 13, 2016 at 8:40 AM | Unregistered CommenterSandyS

SandyS. I'm no expert in this field so you must accept (or not) what follows as being subject to correction. The coal extracted constitutes at most a few percent of the material removed, most of the remainder being worthless shale and sandstone rubble. There are various methods used. One is to create one large hole, storing the waste rock elsewhere temporarily, then using this waste to fill the hole when coal extraction has been completed. A better method is to remove the coal along a continuously moving working front, with the waste transported to positions behind the working machinery where it is used to fill the recently abandoned opening. This makes the newly restored land surface available for re-sculpuring and planting. The same method was used in the first half of the last century to extract iron ore from places like Northamptonshire. The restored land there, apart from being lower, is indistinguishable from un-mined land and was put back into agricultural production after only a few years.

The important point about opencast coal mining is that the openings are filled by their own waste. In fact, because the broken up waste occupies more volume than the original strata there may be problems involved in disposing of the excess.

Apr 13, 2016 at 9:29 AM | Unregistered CommenterAlan Kendall

Dork Games© Step 4.

Successively translate some indecipherable Dork prose, using Babblefish (or some other free programme) into Urdu, Icelandic, and pig latin, before restoring it back into Paddy English. See if it makes more sense. It doesn't, but it's fun anyway. Return to step 2, that's fun as well.

Apr 13, 2016 at 9:59 AM | Unregistered CommenterAlan Kendall

“… it is becoming ever harder to sustain the illusion that recycling is anything other than virtue-signalling from middle-class poseurs …”.
In some communities recycling is compulsory and policed with enthusiasm, what eventually happens to the garbage in those cases is irrelevant.
It’s the enforcement of meaningless rituals like sorting your own garbage that symbolizes their power (and they know who they are), in fact the more meaningless, empty and humiliating the ritual the better.

Apr 13, 2016 at 10:08 AM | Unregistered CommenterChris Hanley

Part of the argument for recycling, was that we had reached 'Peak Hole in the Ground'. We were not digging new holes in the ground quick enough, to meet the needs of a growing population, that needed to throw things into holes in the ground.

This thread has been about the failure of Green Blob outfits to find suitable means of throwing public money into a bottomless pit, without digging any holes at all, yet keeping the money, and leaving the public with nothing to show for it.

China is digging holes in the ground at an alarming rate, and once they discover the quasi capitalist technique of making a fortune out of voids in EU thinking, they will be filling those voids at an alarming rate.

Who would have thought that the secret to financial success in the Fresh Air business, would be digging a pointless hole in the ground and throwing money into it, but extracting the money, as quick as it is thrown in, so no accumulations of excess money could be traced..

Apr 13, 2016 at 10:24 AM | Unregistered Commentergolf charlie

Depreciation is a component of final price.
I suppose you can imagine it as the fall in price of a new car after purchase.
We can imagine national income calculation as a measure of all expenditure, it must capture this cost if it is to be accurate.
So therefore Gdp must add depreciation to gain the total product.
Net national income calculation is a more effective means to ascertain human value.
It subtracts depreciation and indirect taxes (which function to inflate the price of goods)

I agree depreciation =a reduction of wealth
That was the point I was making.
However using your individual business example and then jumping to national accounts is more then a bit Dorkish.
If I did this on these pages I would be rightly crucified.
Anyhow Ch douglas core observations started when looking at the cost accountancy of business and why these firms tend to go bankrupt over time.
The business that tended to survive "added value" to capture the inflation inherent in the system.
The previous point I was making is that firms are now adding useless value with real complexity costs added that now have no useful purpose.
It's not the fault of business.
It's a reflection of the current flawed monetary system.

Another little point

Gdp is a measure of all expenditure (wasteful and otherwise) within the state including exports which is a loss of domestic wealth.
However the state is not the nation.
It's a common failure of many people to equate the state with the nation.
The nation is its collection of people.
The state is Dublin Castle and the rest of them.

Apr 13, 2016 at 11:44 AM | Unregistered CommenterThe Dork of Cork

BINGO!!!! Do I win?

Apr 13, 2016 at 12:09 PM | Unregistered CommenterAlan Kendall

What is so complicated about this concept.
Why cannot people get it?

Depreciation of overly complex manufactured products is dragging down net national or real income.

They could build a 2cv for perhaps less then 1,000 pounds today.
But they typically build 20,000 pound cars.
The firm must do this to capture the inflated market.

A 2cv can only drop a £1,000 pound or perhaps slightly negative if residual raw material costs are very low and recycling is a net cost.
However Modern vehicles can totally destroy real income.
More then £1,000 pounds is typically lost when changing hands!!!!

Apr 13, 2016 at 12:54 PM | Unregistered CommenterThe Dork of Cork

Shbongo....I'm pishd....hic

Apr 13, 2016 at 12:56 PM | Unregistered CommenterShindig

A 2cv can only drop a £1,000 pound or perhaps slightly negative if residual raw material costs are very low and recycling is a net cost.
However Modern vehicles can totally destroy real income.
More then £1,000 pounds is typically lost when changing hands!!!!

Dorkenglish to Welsh to Danish to English gives:

2cv can only drop pounds of £ 1,000 or slightly negative if perhaps raw material costs are very low residual and recycling at a net cost.
BUT modern vehicles can completely destroy real income.
More then £ 1,000 pounds will be lost usually NAR changed hands !!!!

No real change!

Apr 13, 2016 at 1:05 PM | Unregistered CommenterShindig

Let's be honest, Dork, if your start your hilarious cod-economic lectures with 'depreciation is a component of final price', you're never going to be taken seriously, are you?

(FYI: Initial price - depreciation = Final price)

Apr 13, 2016 at 1:10 PM | Unregistered CommenterShindig

Alan Kendall, if you are familiar with the rules of Mornington Crescent, that might be a win, though some of the English was lost in the translation from Gaelic.

Apr 13, 2016 at 1:11 PM | Unregistered Commentergolf charlie

Sorry Shindig.
But this is a very simple and true observation.

If you truely cannot get this then well something more then ones grammar ability is missing from your little head.

Apr 13, 2016 at 1:13 PM | Unregistered CommenterThe Dork of Cork

Oooh, Mr K! Apr 13, 2016 at 7:03 AM – that was quite funny! Careful. You do not wish to ruin your hard-earned reputation (with me, anyway) of worthy wisdom and wretched wit.

Apr 13, 2016 at 1:13 PM | Registered CommenterRadical Rodent

Your observation is correct if we were engaged in a transaction for let's say a second hand whats it.

However national accounts are holistic thingies.
They must account for all prices.
If they did not they would not add up.....

Apr 13, 2016 at 1:18 PM | Unregistered CommenterThe Dork of Cork

How can I make this really simple....

Our individual transaction does not account for all costs, especially in a industrial economy.

Do you agree or disagree?
If you disagree please explain why.

Apr 13, 2016 at 1:27 PM | Unregistered CommenterThe Dork of Cork

Shindig. Spoil sport! You are only meant to report positive results. Pig latin does it for me every time. I also expect good results from using Strine (or S'tralian as it was once called) and Pidgin holds out even more promise.

Wonder what IPCC reviews would yield if subjected to this procedure. A whole new avenue for research. I suppose 97% wouldn't change much.

Apr 13, 2016 at 1:35 PM | Unregistered CommenterAlan Kendall

Mike Jackson wrote

Julian Flood / English Pensioner
The Council is not allowed to use rubbish to generate electricity apparently.

Google 'Great Blakenham incinerator Suffolk'


Apr 13, 2016 at 1:41 PM | Unregistered CommenterJulian Flood

Rabid Rat. Apr 13, 1.13pm "Worthy wisdom and wretched wit" Really you should stop parroting Life of Brian too much, it leads to a dry mouth.

Apr 13, 2016 at 2:01 PM | Unregistered CommenterAlan Kendall

Apr 12, 2016 at 10:59 PM | Unregistered CommenterAyla

As I originally thought, no useful contribution whatsoever. Reminds me of a child being allowed to stay up late & listen to a grownups conversation!

Apr 13, 2016 at 2:10 PM | Unregistered CommenterAlan the Brit

Looks like Bishops audience is unaware or unwilling to engage in the scientific method.
I have made a extremely simple but correct in my view observation of current reality yet all I receive is insults.
This means I have won.
Thanks lads.
I am now a very happy camper.

Apr 13, 2016 at 2:20 PM | Unregistered CommenterThe Dork of Cork

DofC. I for one salute you. Despite repeated insults and laughter at your expense you have never retaliated, nor even demurred at your treatment here. What you appear not to recognize is that your very persistence to teach us oiks, is itself one of the joys of you, yet your not acknowledging this is a cause of much mirth. Long may you clutter up this site, but I suspect others here would hope for a break.

I do so hope that you really aren't insulted and are hiding it. In one very real sense you have indeed won. Happy camping.

Apr 13, 2016 at 3:09 PM | Unregistered CommenterAlan Kendall

"This means I have won."

Yes, dear. Not sure what you think you've won, but if it makes you happy....

Apr 13, 2016 at 6:48 PM | Unregistered CommenterShindig

Shindig, this is excellent news. Hopefully DofC will be celebrating for years, and have little time for blogging.

Apr 13, 2016 at 6:56 PM | Unregistered Commentergolf charlie


When weakness in arguments get exposed I must admit I get a little buz.
But the primary reason I do this is to fully understand the system observed.
So in that sense it is selfish.

But I do not have a classic ego as such.
I like looking at stuff from the bottom up.

I freely admit I am a peasant and immensely enjoy the freedom it gives me.
I pity middle class people really.
They are trapped in the hamster wheel, when you explain their true surroundings they understandably get annoyed and begin to throw insults.
They never want to look at the glass cage.

Apr 13, 2016 at 7:21 PM | Unregistered CommenterThe Dork of Cork

Social credit philosophy takes time to get your head around

I want to thank you for helping me to increase my understanding.
I will shut up, at least for a while.
My mind is on other things anyhow.
A telescope purchase, a fire sale infact.
I feel immensely guilty about it all given Irish monetary pressures.
I will have to act I suppose, release my hidden vulture.and all that.

Apr 13, 2016 at 7:35 PM | Unregistered CommenterThe Dork of Cork


No such luck, he's off on yet another tangent again.

Apr 13, 2016 at 7:37 PM | Registered CommenterSalopian

DoC wishes to "understand the system observed". This might be rather worrying.

Is the Dork a behaviourist, observing us in our natural ecclesiastical habitat, testing our reactions to a preset programme of grammatical errors and patterned nonsense? Notice how responses are directed at the last person who has responded but that the response bears little/no relation to what has gone before: evidence of a programme to get random results?

Are we Dork's lab rats, and what happens to us when we are of no further use?

Paranoia looms

Apr 13, 2016 at 7:51 PM | Unregistered CommenterAlan Kendall

Look, not to defend the Dork's unique presentation style, but he is correct that GDP includes depreciations.
That said, his claim that this is somehow either unimportant or some sort of distraction makes no sense at all.
Capital items like equipment or buildings wear out. The wear and tear has to be accounted for.
The social capital concept is like string theory- very elegant, long winded and pointless.
I keep thinking of inebriated nights discussing life in some Irish pub, and I can easily imagine DoC waxing eloquently but opaquely...especially in the sober light of morning.

Apr 13, 2016 at 8:26 PM | Unregistered Commenterhunter

Hunter, you are wrong wrong wrong

I never said it was unimportant.
I think I gave the impression it was the most important question of our time.
A simple matter of civilization survival.

It is accounted for.
It the matter of how it is accounted that is the problem.
A chronic lack of purchasing power is witnessed for existing capacity.
So we see massive real system failure.
That is how it is accounted for.

The systems response to this is to increase its capacity!!!

Do you not find this strange or perhaps more accurately diabolical and anti human ?

How is this observation not recognised by all sentient humans?
It's very bloody obvious in all of our current production / consumption system.

And it is called social credit, not social capital.

Apr 13, 2016 at 8:56 PM | Unregistered CommenterThe Dork of Cork

DoC. These is not a wind up. In the 1970s one of the dominant political parties in Alberta was the Social Credit (aka. The funny money party). Does this have anything to do with what you are writing about?

Enjoy your telescope. Clear skies.

Apr 13, 2016 at 9:04 PM | Unregistered CommenterAlan Kendall

What we see in reality is a increase of industrial capiticity in mercantile zones ( Germany Etc)
And a corresponding industrial sabotage in deficit countries (chiefly in the Anglo sphere)

The biomass into electricity project is perhaps the most extreme example of this.
The guys behind the curtain are using these blunt force instruments to somehow manage these massive industrial surpluses and deficits.

But there is another way.
However it would entail the giving up the monopolistic power of credit.
To engage in the act of distribution.

Apr 13, 2016 at 9:09 PM | Unregistered CommenterThe Dork of Cork

I know very little of its history but Alberta was a core social credit area as far as I am aware.
Social credit philosophy had more of a pull in agrarian heartlands given its peasant roots.

By the 1970s social credit holdouts had been completely overtaken by the partially successful Keynesian project.
However social creditors rightly understand Keynesian policies as war party policies of production.
The costs of this production began to overtake and overcome civilization in the 1970s ( The great inflation)
The monetarist faction took over the policy reigns.
Again it managed the situation by engaging in industrial sabotage.
For example the UK economy and society was restructured to accept mainly the Eurozone industrial surplus.

This all becomes very obvious once you gain a certain perspective.
The credit monopolists money is the funny stuff.
It's funny because it seeks to deliver the goods to the population with the maximum amount of effort rather then the least.

Apr 13, 2016 at 9:30 PM | Unregistered CommenterThe Dork of Cork

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