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Tag: Politics (page 1 of 9)

Feeding The Addiction

My stash of energy drinks is about to run dry. There’s no top up-trip to Sweden in sight. In desperation, I turn to shady1, online stores.

We’re certainly enjoying the good life here in Norway. But living costs are high, and pretty much everything – except for diapers – is more expensive than across the border, in lovely Sweden. We live about an hour from the nearest Swedish shopping mall, so every now and then we throw the kids in the car, and go there to stock up on candy, meat, soft-drinks. And in my case, those precious energy drinks.

How much we actually save by going to Sweden to shop, I don’t know. If you factor in the price of gas, the emotional cost of the constant fear of the kids barfing in the back seat, and the guilty feeling from all the lethal exhaust the car spew out on a trip that’s not strictly necessary, we might not be saving a single ΓΈre on the expedition.

But I digress. The point here is that it’s been about half a year since the last time we bolted across the border, and I’m down to my last 5 cans of sweet, sweet energy juice. There’s a crisis looming on the horizon!

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Why Not The Sun?

The world is relying heavily on non-renewable, dirty, and poisonous oil, gas, and coal as energy sources. Why not use the giant, glowing ball of energy in the sky instead?

Every day, the Earth is bombarded with the Sun’s powerful rays. Some of the energy is used by plants and trees in photosynthesis, but most of it just heats up the planet. A better use would be to use the energy from the Sun to create electricity. The most common way to do this is by utilizing solar panels. Through the photovoltaic effect, electricity is produced when photons hit the solar panels. The commercially available panels are slowly getting more an more efficient. Currently, the sunlight conversion rate is roughly 21.5%, but this is expected to increase to 40% or even higher in the not-so-distant future.

So why aren’t the world throwing all their research money into solar panel technology? Wouldn’t it be better for everyone if we used a virtually endless, free source of energy instead of having to invest billions to be able to strip-mine non-renewable sources?

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Not Tonight: A Post-Brexit Dystopia

Will Britain turn into a dystopian hell-hole when it leaves the EU? PanicBarn’s upcoming RPG Not Tonight depicts such a scenario, and some people aren’t particularly happy about it.

In a referendum on 23 June 2016, 51.9% of the participating UK electorate voted to leave the EU. On 29 March 2017, the UK government invoked Article 50 of the Treaty on the European Union. The UK is thus due to leave the EU at midnight on 30 March 2019 CET. Those against Britain leaving the EU, preach doom, gloom, and the eventual downfall of the UK as an international superpower. The Brexiteers – those in favor of Brexit – see it as the only way to save the UK from being overrun, and sucked dry by the EU and its members.

The consequences of leaving the EU might be many for the brave Britons. Economy, immigration, higher education, academic research, and a metric fuckton of international agreements, are but a few things that will be affected by Brexit. The EU will also cancel 300,000 UK-owned .eu domains in the process. Exactly in what ways things will actually change, however, remains to be seen.

London-based developer PanicBarn is tinkering with a less-than-jolly scenario where Brexit talks have collapsed, an extreme far-right government has taken power. The result is Not Tonight, a “post-Brexit music road trip thriller”.

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2017 Norwegian Parliamentary Election

We’re getting closer to the 2017 Norwegian parliamentary election. If you haven’t already voted in advance, make sure you get your ass to a polling place on Monday. You can find everything you need to know about the election on the official Valg 2017 (Norwegian version) site.

The most important thing you need to know is where your polling place is located, and that you don’t need the polling card you got in your mailbox a while back. All you need to bring is a valid picture ID. So if you’ve somehow managed to misplace the polling card, you can still vote! Why the voting officials are still spending millions on sending people something they don’t actually need must be the very definition of a dysfunctional bureaucracy.

Even if you can’t find a party that speaks to you1, there’s not reason to stay at home on election day. Go to a polling place and leave a blank vote. In Norwegian elections, blank votes are invalid and discarded, but they are counted towards the total number of votes. This means that your protest vote makes a difference, because the election statistics will show how many people gave a blank vote.

If you still decide not to vote, at least have the decency to shut the fuck up about everything political that happens in the future – if you abstain from voting, you also yield your right to complain. If you can’t quite get your head around that, please consult this helpful chart by Cyanide & Happiness.

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No, Donald Trump Didn’t Steal From the Bee Movie

About half a day ago, Twitter user @paulythegun had a brilliant idea. He took an excerpt from Trump’s inaugural address, and passed in on as an almost word-by-word copy from the 2007 animated film, Bee Movie.

If the image embedded with the tweet isn’t visible, click the pic.twitter.com link. As of right now, the tweet has been retweeted over sixty three five seven thousand times. I’ve seen it posted multiple times both in my Twitter feed and on Facebook. And of course this spreads like a wildfire. The 45th president is stealing his speech material from a children’s movie! It’s both hilarious and outrageous at the same time. This is exactly what we on the center-left in politics expected from the talking carrot.

But there’s a problem. The tweet is not true.

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