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The documents presented on this page present the wide range of generally shorter articles that inform the reader about subjects that are often topical.
on energy   on global warming housing   and making living systems ecological  
sustainable futures   information   sums will set you free   phonics, phonetics, and teaching   related to memory   sloppy logic health-related topics

on energy

1 replacing fossil fuels: the scale of the problem
Western society relies on fossil fuels to function. What will it do when the oil runs out? are we really all dooooooooommmed?

2 nuclear power - is nuclear power really really dangerous?
Examining the myths of nuclear power panic.
3 replacements for fossil fuels—what can be done about it?
Information on replacements for fossil fuels, including hydrates, coal gasification. Other options will be added.
3a biofuels
3b photovoltaics (solar cells)
3c non-pv (photovoltaic) solar technology
3d tar sands and shale oil
3e wind power
5 energy economics and fossil fuels—how long do we have?
To help remedy much confused thinking that is abroad on the matter of energy arithmetic
6 ionising radiation and health—risk analysis 
User-friendly introduction to basic radioactivity concepts and health risk assessments.
7 transportable fuels
7a Fuel cells and battery-powered vehicles
8 distributed energy systems: conservation and micro-generation
The future of energy production will probably involve systems ranging from very large, central distribution to the very local systems, including conservation.
geothermal systems and heat exchangers
8b combined energy systems
8b the energy storage problem
9 fossil fuel disasters
Fossil fuels are not clean or safe. This document lists some recent disasters in fossil-fuel production.
10 fossil fuels are a dirty business
Photo illustrations of the filthy business of extracting fossil fuels from the Earth.
11 There she blows! striking oil
Descriptions and photos of when drilling for oil goes wrong. Book source reviewed.
12 books on energy replacements with reviews
abelard reviews several informative, background books that discuss the way forward towards a fossil fuel-free economy and society. Thoughtful reviews.

on global warming

Our planet’s climate is changing. What is happening and how human beings are implicated.
4 Global warming
4a Anthropogenic global warming, and ocean acidity
4b Energy pricing and greenwash
4c How atmospheric chemistry and physics effects global warming
4d Antarctica melting ice, sea levels, water and weather implications

4e Gathering data to test global warming
4f Arctic melting ice, sea levels
4g Shifting global and local weather patterns
4h Dendroclimatology

housing and making living systems ecological

Building houses ecologically is generally cheaper to build, saves energy use, reduces carbon footprint, as well as enabling a net energy output.
living in containers - modern prefab homes
non-pv (photovoltaic) solar technology

sustainable futures

Pressure on various planetary resources is causing concern. The sustainable futures series of briefing documents is designed to show some basic logical approaches to meet these problems.

comparing fertility rates and populations in europe and beyond
Numbers for sustainable futures planning - fertility rates and populations, country areas, miltary spending.With discussion about the world’s population, its growth and sustainability.

land conservation and food production
The conservation of land by advanced farming and plant modification—how to feed populations without ruining the planet.
sustainable manufacture
Discussion of material recycling in context of manufacturing.
pressure on water resources
tragedy of the commons
Assets held in common allow individuals to exploit them to the detriment of others unless society establishes sufficient controls.
ecologically collapsing and retrenching civilisations: written sources
with reviews.


GDP 2: GDP and other quality of life measurements
Various measures of standards of living and standards of well-being, with discussion and links.

world information & data resources
Links to major databases and other useful sources of information on our world society.
index of information tables

From a recognised expert on intelligence, what left-handers do, compared to right-handers.

'just war'
When might war be considered as justified? some ideas from past 'philosophers'.

misuse and corruption in science
How science, industry and government corrupt and distort scientific results for their own financial or professional gain.

the anthropic principle, or what if the universe was not the way it is
Looking at the wonder of how life on Earth, and even the Earth itself, manages to exist in the context of physics; and how critically it fits together.

sums will set you free
Maths, or sums, are often misunderstood.

Language is used for communication between humans. Mathematics is a more precise means for communicating than everyday language. However, it is important to realise that mathematics is not different in type from English.

In the sums will set you free or maths zone, abelard presents articles that can help demystify this language, enabling the user to understand and to master much in their physical and social environment.

cause, chance and Bayesian statistics
The methods of empiric statistics. improving judgements.

the sum of a geometric sequence: or the arithmetic of fractional banking
Explains fractional banking for the ordinary reader. Sum of a geometric sequence formula, how to derive/use it explained with real world examples and simple language.
logarithms and exponentials - t.a.s.
A footnote giving a brief explanation of logarithms, natural logarithms, exponentials and e. Main document has examples of logarithnic/exponential relationships.

phonics, phonetics, and teaching

how to teach a child to read using phonics
A clear and simple explanation of how to teach reading rationally and systematically. Aimed at teachers and parents. NOT look-say.

Reading test and related information
A simple and easily used test to assess a child's reading ability. With the top 250 words of the average person's vocabulary.

a phonetics chart for british english This document includes .mp3 sound files
The basic English sounds and the usual phonetic symbols, with examples and downloadable sounds. Preparatory background document for teaching documents in preparation. By the auroran sunset.

click to see more briefing document titlesrelated to memory

repressed memory
Humans are highly suggestable, and memory is very unreliable.

what is memory, or intelligence? Incautious claims of ‘IQ’ genes
Caution is advocated when discussing these terms as they are often, and widely, misunderstood. Analysis and discussion of an article from the New Scientist, with commentary on our current actual knowledge of memory and, so, of intelligence.
memory, paranoia and paradigms
This document bears on decisions regarding the organisation and running of society, and in the manner in which the young are educated.
on attention and concentration
How memories are selective, and depend greatly on which incidents are noticed and recognised.



citizens’ relationship to the state

people power and the power of civil disobedience
illustrating independent civil actions that often result in government being overthrown and changed

authoritarianism and liberty
Introductory document to the logic of human organisations, clarifying definitions of various (sacred) names in the discussion of modern Western politics
islamic authoritarianism
Including a short glossary of terms widely used by Islamic fundamentalist elements.

the myth of islamic tolerance in al-andalus
Spain under Islamic conquest was not the cosy partnership between Muslims and Christian as now commonly believed.

socialist religions and sub-cults
socialist mindset versus moderate mindset, A counterpoint

fascism is socialism
A supplement to socialist religions briefing document

See also for socialism and peace: the labour party's programme of action, 1934.

papal encyclicals - some extracts
papal encyclicals and marx - some extracts: on socialism and liberalism
précis of the communist manifesto and extracts from Das Capital

ends and means, and the individual
Study of the glib phrase, “the end justifies the means”
oppression, poverty and life expectancy - t.a.s.
Oppression leads to poverty. Poverty leads to earlier death. Meanwhile socialist dictatorships also murder in bulk.

education to civilisation

the nature of cult recruitment - jihadi bombers
Why and how suicide bombers are recruited, with reflections on how to strengthen society against such behaviours.

‘cocksure young men’
Outlines the problems concerning ‘cocksure’, often disaffected, young people and their origins, with discussion on some directions to take in starting to resolve this nuisance growing in society.

humans killing humans
Looking violent behaviour and how much it is inate and how much it is encouraged and reinforced by others, including modern media.

understanding a species under stress
Short briefing document that outlines origins of stressful situations and its bearing on the growth and decline of populations and on conflict.

also see:
laying the foundations for sound education

understanding the current political world
Putting together apparently disparate current events in a coherent fashion helps to explain why our leaders are taking particular, sometimes unpopular, actions. click to see more briefing document titles

citizen’s wage, with commentary on the misconstruing of property, ownership and subsidy
On citizen's wage or the common wealth dividend, with discussion on false ideas of ownership and on heritage or patrimony.click to see more briefing document titles
speech by Richard Nixon on guaranteed income - a citizen's wage
A subsidiary document to Citizen’s wage.
British establishment interference with civil liberties during the 20th century: Rule 18B and 18B(1a), the example of Diana and Oswald Mosley
Oswald Mosley, Britain’s very own national socialist
Supporting resources for other briefing documents that analyse dysfunctional social, or group, behaviour in modern society.
précis of the communist manifesto and extracts from Das Capital
papal encyclicals and Marx - some extracts: on socialism and liberalism
also see: corporate corruption, politics and the law

Japanese electoral politics in the context of Koizumi and postal privatisation
an analysis of Japanese politics and the Japanese electoral system, with special attention to the current political players, their manifestos, policies and intentions in the run-up to the imminent Japanese general election. By the auroran sunset, a student of Japan.

Yasukuni Shrine and the state of Far East relations
Discussion of the state of Far Eastern relations and the famous Yasukuni Shrine.

establishment psycho-bunk
or psychobabble

1 'Lie detection'
“ ‘Lie detection’, otherwise known as complete bunkum.”

click to see more briefing document titles 2 Ritalin and junk science
Sweeping inadequate child-rearing under the carpet by doping the young. Making up fancy names for poor child discipline, and then pretending it is a 'medical' matter.
3 ‘Dyslexia’
‘Dyslexia’—usually a euphemism for poor teaching and slow learning.
4 Repressed memory
Humans are highly suggestable, and memory is very unreliable.
5 What is memory, or intelligence? Incautious claims of ‘IQ’ genes
Caution is advocated when discussing these terms as they are often, and widely, misunderstood. Analysis and discussion of an article from the New Scientist, with commentary on our current actual knowledge of memory and, so, of intelligence.
6 PTSD and other 'traumatic' 'syndromes'
In response to the misappropriation of PTSD by avericious 'victims' and their medical 'advisors'.
7 ‘Asperger’s’ and ‘autism’
‘autism’ and ‘Asperger’s’—one is a disease and the other a symptom.
8 Sexual differences in childhood behaviour - socialist science: the result first, the study after
Scandinavian, and other, 'scientists', who just know childhood preferences are nothing to do with biology. Their theory says so.
9 'Dyspraxia'
Dyspraxia, generally, is a jargonised name for clumsiness.

sloppy logic

Believing impossible things to serve a concealed motive.

ends and means and the individual
Study of the glib phrase, “the end justifies the means”
reasoning errors, empathy, attention and concentration
Errors in thinking have major influences on people’s responses and sometimes inadequate behaviours towards others, together with decisions and actions taken in consequence.
categories, analogy and reification
Thinking clearly—avoiding confusions stemming from mental tricks and habits pervasive in human society.

human classification systems, using the example of classification of ‘living organisms’ (taxonomy)

systèmes de classification de l'homme, en utilisant l'exemple de la classification des « organismes vivants » (taxonomie), translated by xavier

click to see more briefing document titles geological topics

tsunamis: tsunamis travel fast but not at infinite speed
What is a tsunami, why do they occur, what are the results (wave size, speed, distance travelled) and the effects on humanity and the environment.

tectonics: tectonic plates – floating on the surface of a cauldron
this sub-document to tsunamis discusses tectonic plates, including their relationship to tsunamis.

health-related topics

a comparison between international health services
Given the current [2009] debate over various forms of health care, abelard makes a dispassionate investigation on several different systems, their benefits and disadvantages.

the labour party did not start the nhs
abelard lays to rest the urban myth connecting Socialists (a.k.a. the Labour Party) with the National Health Service.
infant mortality and longevity statistics
Why infant mortality and longevity statistics are not useful indicators of health systems.
on flu pandemics
What happened during the 1918 flu pandemic? Are we in for something similar now? How flu acts. With some safety advice.
on vaccines
The reliability of vaccines; treatment risks and benefits; cervical cancer vaccines, cervarix and gardasil; on human papillomavirus
on immunology
Finding your way more easily through the jargon-loaded sources on the area of immunology.
covid and nuclear explosions -expanding and dying chains
the arithmetic of explosions, epidemics and communication in the world of Covid-19
Using the example of the covid-19 pandemic, abelard discusses how a disease (or an idea or a behaviour) spreads or can be contained, or even become extinct.
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