CSIRO and BoM Report

A short post, but it doesn’t take much to show that CSIRO and BoM are telling porkies again in their just released State of Climate report. Just click here to get a graph showing the INCREASING trend in rainfall.

The report states:

2. Rainfall
While total rainfall on the Australian continent has been relatively stable …

rranom.aus.0112.20873

The fine print at the bottom left says: “Linear trend of 6.33mm decade.”

Related Links:

Some quick thoughts on CSIRO drought info.

Debate on lack of skill of drought models.

Little evidence fires due to warming by Peter Gallagher.

On Line Opinion by Ian Castles.

H/T Geoff Sherrington.

108 Comments

  1. Nick Stokes March 15, 2010 6:06 am

    This is nitpicky. The full sentence was:
    While total rainfall on the Australian continent has been relatively stable, the geographic distribution of rainfall has
    changed significantly over the past 50 years.

    The point they were making is that it’s up in the north, down in the south. Relative to those changes, 6.33 mm/decade is relatively stable.

    http://www.moyhu.blogspot.com

    • Anonymous March 15, 2010 6:10 am

      A 13% increase is not “relatively stable”.

  2. Nick Stokes March 15, 2010 1:06 am

    This is nitpicky. The full sentence was:While total rainfall on the Australian continent has been relatively stable, the geographic distribution of rainfall haschanged significantly over the past 50 years.The point they were making is that it's up in the north, down in the south. Relative to those changes, 6.33 mm/decade is relatively stable.

    http://www.moyhu.blogspot.com

  3. davids99us March 15, 2010 1:10 am

    A 13% increase is not “relatively stable”.

  4. Anonymous March 15, 2010 6:57 am

    [snip] not appropriate here. You are welcome otherwise.

    • Nick Stokes March 15, 2010 9:48 am

      Only a tiny fraction of CSIRO’s budget goes to climate research. [snip]

      http://www.moyhu.blogspot.com

      • Anonymous March 15, 2010 11:58 pm

        Nick,

        are you saying they can’t fund enough data gathering and research so they shouldn’t be making statements, or, they can’t afford to hire decent climate personnel??

        Either way it would appear to support David’s direction.

        • Nick Stokes March 16, 2010 6:12 am

          I simply mean that CSIRO is a general scientific research organisation, and does many other things. You folk tend to have a very narrow focus, reflected in the comment now snipped.

          http://www.moyhu.blogspot.com

          • Anonymous March 16, 2010 10:15 am

            Nick, CSIRO has many specialty divisions, a specialty climate modelling, climate change flagship does not currently exist. My question is then why has this research been carried out if it is not by specialists in the field. Meteorologists are by nature not climatologists and neither are the climate adaptation researchers climatologists. As it stands I’ll wait until I have the opportunity to examine the the data and any code that are released before I form an opinion on this particular piece of research.

          • Nick Stokes March 17, 2010 8:30 am

            The CSIRO Division of Atmospheric Research (used to be D.A.Physics) has a long and honorable history. In fact (trivia), a DAP scientist was played by Fred Astaire in the 1960 Hollywood movie “On the Beach”. DAP have been pioneers and world leaders in climatology. Here we see Garth Paltridge, Barrie Pittock often quoted.

            http://www.moyhu.blogspot.com

          • Anonymous March 18, 2010 3:25 am

            How much is a tiny part of over $500 million. If CSIRO is simply about research then why are they making political statements about the climate?

          • Nick Stokes March 18, 2010 4:22 am

            CSIRO’s climate work is mostly done at the old Atmospheric Physics site at Aspendale. That’s about 100 people, and covers all atmospheric research. There are a few more in Canberra. In all, about 2% of CSIRO’s staff.

            You may disagree with the observation that total rainfall over the last fifty years has been relatively constant. But it’s the sort of assessment of data that scientists make all the time. It isn’t political.

            http://www.moyhu.blogspot.com

          • Anonymous March 18, 2010 9:05 pm

            Well if only 2% work on atmospheric research then why is it being over represented in the press. Also you havnt answered directly how much of the $500million goes towards climate research. They are getting $120 million for a new Marine Research vessel. Total funding/revenue 08/09 for the CSIRO was just over $1.3 billion (with over $2 billion in assets)
            http://www.csiro.au/files/files/psxk.pdf
            It is political when we get alarmist publications done by the CSIRO yet when you check their fine print they say no responsibility for their alarmist claims.

          • Nick Stokes March 18, 2010 11:14 pm

            The press follows its own way. I don’t know the exact fig on climate research. But salary costs are the big item, so 2% .. you can do the math.

            http://www.moyhu.blogspot.com

  5. twawki March 15, 2010 1:57 am

    Between them they consume over a billion dollars in taxpayers money ever year just to perpetrate climate fraud!

  6. Nick Stokes March 15, 2010 4:48 am

    Only a tiny fraction of CSIRO's budget goes to climate research. And none goes to fraud.

    http://www.moyhu.blogspot.com

  7. kuhnkat March 15, 2010 6:58 pm

    Nick,are you saying they can't fund enough data gathering and research so they shouldn't be making statements, or, they can't afford to hire decent climate personnel??Either way it would appear to support David's direction.

  8. Nick Stokes March 16, 2010 1:12 am

    I simply mean that CSIRO is a general scientific research organisation, and does many other things. You folk tend to have a very narrow focus, reflected in the comment now snipped.

    http://www.moyhu.blogspot.com

  9. pandanus March 16, 2010 5:15 am

    Nick, CSIRO has many specialty divisions, a specialty climate modelling, climate change flagship does not currently exist. My question is then why has this research been carried out if it is not by specialists in the field. Meteorologists are by nature not climatologists and neither are the climate adaptation researchers climatologists. As it stands I'll wait until I have the opportunity to examine the the data and any code that are released before I form an opinion on this particular piece of research.

  10. Romanoz March 17, 2010 2:24 am

    What is interesting is the silence on another aspect of CSIRO Climate Modelling – extreme rainfall events ie rainfall gt 25mm within 24 hrs. The first IPCC report had a graph showing a 80% increase in such events as a result of CO2 doubling. Barrie Pittock, who was responsible for the early CSIRO model, repeats the claim that extreme rainfall events will “very likely” increase with Global Warming in mhis 2009 book “Climate Change”.
    If you look at this Time Series of Extreme Rainfall on http://reg.bom.gov.au/cgi-bin/climate/change/extremes/timeseries.cgi?graph=R_30&ave_yr=A it show that in the last decade the last 9 years have fallen below the 100 yr average. There is no other comparable run of below average “very heavy rain days” in the record. If you select the trend line you will see that it is “relatively stable”.
    Is this ethical, failing to disclose that aspects of your modeling are not being verified by observations.

    In a letter to Theodore Draper, an important historian of US Communism, the US Marxist James P. Cannon made the important point that omission of relevant facts, by a selective use of sources, is one form of historical falsification.

    • Anonymous March 17, 2010 5:54 am

      Romanov, That is interesting, I didn’t know that. If you were to plot it from 1960 the trend would be distinctly down.

      Failure to disclose adverse results is most definitely not ethical and not up to professional standards.

      Another very interesting thing about the rainfall map is that ALL the areas of decreased rainfall are located squarely on high population growth areas. Coincidence? I don’t think so. No way the pictured drop in rainfall could be caused by a well mixed gas or atmospheric circulation.

      • Nick Stokes March 17, 2010 6:16 am

        This gets really wacky. You complain when CSIRO says there has been a drought, then attack them for failing to disclose that there has been less than usual heavy rain.

        http://www.moyhu.blogspot.com

        • Anonymous March 17, 2010 6:44 am

          Good grief. What’s wacky about reporting changes in climate objectively, and not cherry picking the changes that support AGW?

          • Nick Stokes March 17, 2010 8:34 am

            “Objectively” means putting your spin on it. The amount of rainfall is perfectly well disclosed – a graph from BoM on the internet is linked as proof of non-disclosure? You may think nine years of below average extreme rainfall during a drought period are significant, but it’s not unethical for CSIRO not to share your view.

            http://www.moyhu.blogspot.com

          • Anonymous March 17, 2010 9:27 am

            The report stated that overall rainfall was relatively stable. It wasn’t. It increased by 13% since 1960. Deny the denial if you wish.

            Romanoz is the one to talk to abt extreme rainfall.

          • Nick Stokes March 17, 2010 7:49 pm

            David,
            You’re muddling figures here. They said relatively stable over the last 50 years. You’ve been quoting the trend since 1900 (6.63), and that seems to be what you base your 13% on. And that would be 13% over a century, not the last 50 years.

            http://www.moyhu.blogspot.com

          • Andrew March 17, 2010 11:08 pm

            There is no legitimate reason to use only half of the data.

            http://devoidofnulls.wordpres.com/

  11. Romanoz March 16, 2010 9:24 pm

    What is interesting is the silence on another aspect of CSIRO Climate Modelling – extreme rainfall events ie rainfall gt 25mm within 24 hrs. The first IPCC report had a graph showing a 80% increase in such events as a result of CO2 doubling. Barrie Pittock, who was responsible for the early CSIRO model, repeats the claim that extreme rainfall events will “very likely” increase with Global Warming in mhis 2009 book “Climate Change”.If you look at this Time Series of Extreme Rainfall on http://reg.bom.gov.au/cgi-bin/climate/change/ex… it show that in the last decade the last 9 years have fallen below the 100 yr average. There is no other comparable run of below average “very heavy rain days” in the record. If you select the trend line you will see that it is “relatively stable”.Is this ethical, failing to disclose that aspects of your modeling are not being verified by observations.In a letter to Theodore Draper, an important historian of US Communism, the US Marxist James P. Cannon made the important point that omission of relevant facts, by a selective use of sources, is one form of historical falsification.

  12. davids99us March 17, 2010 12:54 am

    Romanov, That is interesting, I didn't know that.Failure to disclose adverse results is most definitely not ethical and notup to professional standards.Another very interesting thing about the rainfall map is that ALL the areas ofdecreased rainfall are located squarely on high population growth areas.Coincidence? I don't think so. No way the pictured drop in rainfall couldbe caused by a well mixed gas or atmospheric circulation.

  13. Nick Stokes March 17, 2010 1:16 am

    This gets really wacky. You complain when CSIRO says there has been a drought, then attack them for failing to disclose that there has been less than usual heavy rain.

    http://www.moyhu.blogspot.com

  14. davids99us March 17, 2010 1:44 am

    Good grief. What's wacky about reporting changes in climate objectively, and not cherry picking the changes that support AGW?

  15. Nick Stokes March 17, 2010 3:30 am

    The CSIRO Division of Atmospheric Research (used to be D.A.Physics) has a long and honorable history. In fact (trivia), a DAP scientist was played by Fred Astaire in the 1960 Hollywood movie “On the Beach”. DAP have been pioneers and world leaders in climatology. Here we see Garth Paltridge, Barrie Pittock often quoted.

    http://www.moyhu.blogspot.com

  16. Nick Stokes March 17, 2010 3:34 am

    “Objectively” means putting your spin on it. The amount of rainfall is perfectly well disclosed – a graph from BoM on the internet is linked as proof of non-disclosure? You may think nine years of below average extreme rainfall during a drought period are significant, but it's not unethical for CSIRO not to share your view.

    http://www.moyhu.blogspot.com

  17. davids99us March 17, 2010 4:27 am

    The report stated that overall rainfall was relatively stable. It wasn't. It increased by 13% since 1960. Deny the denial if you wish. Romanoz is the one to talk to abt extreme rainfall.

  18. Andrew March 17, 2010 1:29 pm

    The changes in Australia’s rain are fascinating. First, allow me if I may to comment on this:

    “The point they were making is that it’s up in the north, down in the south. Relative to those changes, 6.33 mm/decade is relatively stable.”

    Nick, have a look at this map:
    http://reg.bom.gov.au/cgi-bin/climate/change/trendmaps.cgi?map=rain&area=aus&season=0112&period=1900

    It doesn’t appear to me that your North-South statement comports with the data.

    Now, if I may, I was particularly interested in the so-called “heavy” precipitation. In the US, Tom Karl among others has claimed that we are experiencing more “heavy precipitation”, neglecting to mention that it has been almost exactly proportional to the total precipitation increase (which doesn’t stop it being called “disproportionate”). Australia has very interesting results on this which confirm my general belief that the claim that precipitation increases will be met with increasing intensity disproportionally is bogus. Inspite of increasing rainfall there is little change (which I doubt is significant) in Australia’s very wet day and extremely wet day precipitation, and a small (again, probably not significant) decline in daily average intensity:
    http://reg.bom.gov.au/cgi-bin/climate/change/extremes/timeseries.cgi?graph=R95p&ave_yr=T
    http://reg.bom.gov.au/cgi-bin/climate/change/extremes/timeseries.cgi?graph=R99p&ave_yr=T
    http://reg.bom.gov.au/cgi-bin/climate/change/extremes/timeseries.cgi?graph=SDII&ave_yr=T

    http://devoidofnulls.wordpress.com/

    • Nick Stokes March 17, 2010 7:54 pm

      Well, they were referring to the last 50 years, so this is the map you should be looking at.

      And yes, my N-S was an abbreviation. NW vs SE and SW would be more exact (and more in line with what they said).

      http://www.moyhu.blogspot.com

      • Andrew March 17, 2010 11:10 pm

        Again, there is no reason to look at the trends over the last 50 years, that’s just cherry picking.

        http://devoidofnulls.wordpres.com/

        • Nick Stokes March 17, 2010 11:23 pm

          If you look at the report, it’s basically a survey of the last fifty years. It’s a perfectly legitimate topic. And it does correspond to the period of major CO2 increase.

          http://www.moyhu.blogspot.com

          • Andrew March 18, 2010 1:51 am

            CO2 increased over the last one hundred years, too. But showing all the data changes the conclusions. If they want to focus on the changes that have occurred is is more appropriate to use all the data, otherwise you can get a very erroneous impression of what happens.

            http://devoidofnulls.wordpres.com/

          • Jan Pompe March 18, 2010 3:07 am

            “It’s a perfectly legitimate topic. And it does correspond to the period of major CO2 increase.”

            Oh when exactly did this start?

            Have you looked at the last 15000 years of Vostok ice cores?

            It’s intriguing stuff.

          • Nick Stokes March 18, 2010 4:18 am

            The recent CO2 curve is well-known. But “major carbon burning” if you prefer.

            http://www.moyhu.blogspot.com

          • Grant Alexander March 21, 2010 8:27 pm

            Nick. Read the responses. CSIRO and BOM have been very, very very selective in the range of data they have used. If they were honest, object or scientific, then they would have used the data going back to 1900.

  19. Andrew March 17, 2010 8:29 am

    The changes in Australia's rain are fascinating. First, allow me if I may to comment on this:”The point they were making is that it's up in the north, down in the south. Relative to those changes, 6.33 mm/decade is relatively stable.”Nick, have a look at this map:http://reg.bom.gov.au/cgi-bin/climate/change/tr…It doesn't appear to me that your North-South statement comports with the data.Now, if I may, I was particularly interested in the so-called “heavy” precipitation. In the US, Tom Karl among others has claimed that we are experiencing more “heavy precipitation”, neglecting to mention that it has been almost exactly proportional to the total precipitation increase (which doesn't stop it being called “disproportionate”). Australia has very interesting results on this which confirm my general belief that the claim that precipitation increases will be met with increasing intensity disproportionally is bogus. Inspite of increasing rainfall there is little change (which I doubt is significant) in Australia's very wet day and extremely wet day precipitation, and a small (again, probably not significant) decline in daily average intensity:http://reg.bom.gov.au/cgi-bin/climate/change/exhttp://reg.bom.gov.au/cgi-bin/climate/change/exhttp://reg.bom.gov.au/cgi-bin/climate/change/ex

    http://devoidofnulls.wordpress.com/

  20. Nick Stokes March 17, 2010 2:49 pm

    David,You're muddling figures here. They said relatively stable over the last 50 years. You've been quoting the trend since 1900 (6.63), and that seems to be what you base your 13% on. And that would be 13% over a century, not the last 50 years.

    http://www.moyhu.blogspot.com

  21. Nick Stokes March 17, 2010 2:54 pm

    Well, they were referring to the last 50 years, so this is the map you should be looking at.And yes, my N-S was an abbreviation. NW vs SE and SW would be more exact (and more in line with what they said).

    http://www.moyhu.blogspot.com

  22. Anonymous March 17, 2010 10:31 pm

    Why would they only report temps and rainfall from 1960 when their records go back further than that?
    They do not constrain themselves to a 1960 start date for CO2 and sea level data.

    • Nick Stokes March 17, 2010 11:00 pm

      That’s nonsense. They were explicitly making a point about a particular period of time.

      Of course they report temps and rainfall pre-1960. It puzzles me how people here display BoM graphs etc of exactly the data they claim is not being disclosed! It’s right there in the head post.

      http://www.moyhu.blogspot.com

      • Romanoz March 18, 2010 1:54 am

        There is no reference to the extreme rainfall trend in the CSIRO/BOM Special Climate Statement even though it has been part of the IPCC Reports since the beginning. The failure to mention that their model is not validated in this respect is one of the issues.
        Another is that there is no disclosure that computer model M was modified x times before it was validated against the historical record! Its like a statistician taking multiple samples until he gets the one that he wants and failing to disclose this when he estimates the population! Cherry picking is one name for it.
        One picky point about BOM graphs. BOM supply the data NOT the graphs. They provide a tool for producing graphs only. There is no context which is everything of course!
        For instance, when they do provide graphs, such as their 2009 Annual Report, they are highly selective in their comments/interpretation. The temperature data is commented on , “warmest on record” or “second warmest”, but the rainfall trends in their decadel rainfall graph are uncommented ie the last 2 decades have been the second and third wettest decades on record are not drawn to the readers attention.
        After all, producing a graph is childs play, its the interpretation or lack of it that is important.

        • Nick Stokes March 18, 2010 2:02 am

          The failure to mention that their model is not validated
          Where do they mention a model at all?
          It’s a joint BoM/CSIRO report. BoM doesn’t even have a model.

          http://www.moyhu.blogspot.com

      • Anonymous March 18, 2010 9:44 pm

        Thankyou for your measured response Nick.
        Obviously I should have specified that I was referring to the ‘State of the Climate’ report which was linked in the head post.

        ‘…Of course they report temps and rainfall pre-1960…’
        I agree that they can.
        In this case they chose not to.
        That is why I asked my question.

        • Nick Stokes March 18, 2010 11:19 pm

          Yes, and in that report (“snapshot”) they discuss the last fifty years, and they cite data for that period.

          Your qn is like asking why Churchill’s history of WW2 covered up the burning of Joan of Arc. It’s in the history – it’s just not what he was writing about.

          http://www.moyhu.blogspot.com

          • Anonymous March 19, 2010 4:37 am

            Actually Nick, it is more like asking how the foreign policies of the US from WW I forward contributed to the situation in the Current Middle East.

            Very valid questions whether YOU are interested in the answers or not

          • Anonymous March 19, 2010 7:44 pm

            Nick,
            The logic behind your reasoning escapes me.

  23. TonyHansen March 17, 2010 5:31 pm

    Why would they only report temps and rainfall from 1960 when their records go back further than that?They do not constrain themselves to a 1960 start date for CO2 and sea level data.

  24. Nick Stokes March 17, 2010 6:00 pm

    That's nonsense. They were explicitly making a point about a particular period of time.Of course they report temps and rainfall pre-1960. It puzzles me how people here display BoM graphs etc of exactly the data they claim is not being disclosed! It's right there in the head post.

    http://www.moyhu.blogspot.com

  25. Andrew March 17, 2010 6:08 pm

    There is no legitimate reason to use only half of the data.

    http://devoidofnulls.wordpres.com/

  26. Andrew March 17, 2010 6:10 pm

    Again, there is no reason to look at the trends over the last 50 years, that's just cherry picking.

    http://devoidofnulls.wordpres.com/

  27. Nick Stokes March 17, 2010 6:23 pm

    If you look at the report, it's basically a survey of the last fifty years. It's a perfectly legitimate topic. And it does correspond to the period of major CO2 increase.

    http://www.moyhu.blogspot.com

  28. Andrew March 17, 2010 8:51 pm

    CO2 increased over the last one hundred years, too. But showing all the data changes the conclusions. If they want to focus on the changes that have occurred is is more appropriate to use all the data, otherwise you can get a very erroneous impression of what happens.

    http://devoidofnulls.wordpres.com/

  29. Romanoz March 17, 2010 8:54 pm

    There is no reference to the extreme rainfall trend in the CSIRO/BOM Special Climate Statement even though it has been part of the IPCC Reports since the beginning. The failure to mention that their model is not validated in this respect is one of the issues. Another is that there is no disclosure that computer model M was modified x times before it was validated against the historical record! Its like a statistician taking multiple samples until he gets the one that he wants and failing to disclose this when he estimates the population! Cherry picking is one name for it.One picky point about BOM graphs. BOM supply the data NOT the graphs. They provide a tool for producing graphs only. There is no context which is everything of course! For instance, when they do provide graphs, such as their 2009 Annual Report, they are highly selective in their comments/interpretation. The temperature data is commented on , “warmest on record” or “second warmest”, but the rainfall trends in their decadel rainfall graph are uncommented ie the last 2 decades have been the second and third wettest decades on record are not drawn to the readers attention.After all, producing a graph is childs play, its the interpretation or lack of it that is important.

  30. Nick Stokes March 17, 2010 9:02 pm

    The failure to mention that their model is not validatedWhere do they mention a model at all?It's a joint BoM/CSIRO report. BoM doesn't even have a model.

    http://www.moyhu.blogspot.com

  31. Jan Pompe March 17, 2010 10:07 pm

    “It's a perfectly legitimate topic. And it does correspond to the period of major CO2 increase.”Oh when exactly did this start?Have you looked at the last 15000 years of Vostok ice cores?It's intriguing stuff.

  32. twawki March 17, 2010 10:25 pm

    How much is a tiny part of over $500 million. If CSIRO is simply about research then why are they making political statements about the climate?

  33. Nick Stokes March 17, 2010 11:18 pm

    The recent CO2 curve is well-known. But “major carbon burning” if you prefer.

    http://www.moyhu.blogspot.com

  34. Nick Stokes March 17, 2010 11:22 pm

    CSIRO's climate work is mostly done at the old Atmospheric Physics site at Aspendale. That's about 100 people, and covers all atmospheric research. There are a few more in Canberra. In all, about 2% of CSIRO's staff.You may disagree with the observation that total rainfall over the last fifty years has been relatively constant. But it's the sort of assessment of data that scientists make all the time. It isn't political.

    http://www.moyhu.blogspot.com

  35. twawki March 18, 2010 4:05 pm

    Well if only 2% work on atmospheric research then why is it being over represented in the press. Also you havnt answered directly how much of the $500million goes towards climate research. They are getting $120 million for a new Marine Research vessel. Total funding/revenue 08/09 for the CSIRO was just over $1.3 billion (with over $2 billion in assets)http://www.csiro.au/files/files/psxk.pdfIt is political when we get alarmist publications done by the CSIRO yet when you check their fine print they say no responsibility for their alarmist claims.

  36. TonyHansen March 18, 2010 4:44 pm

    Thankyou for your measured response Nick.Obviously I should have specified that I was referring to the 'State of the Climate' report which was linked in the head post. '…Of course they report temps and rainfall pre-1960…'I agree that they can. In this case they chose not to.That is why I asked my question.

  37. Nick Stokes March 18, 2010 6:14 pm

    The press follows its own way. I don't know the exact fig on climate research. But salary costs are the big item, so 2% .. you can do the math.

    http://www.moyhu.blogspot.com

  38. Nick Stokes March 18, 2010 6:19 pm

    Yes, and in that report (“snapshot”) they discuss the last fifty years, and they cite data for that period. Your qn is like asking why Churchill's history of WW2 covered up the burning of Joan of Arc. It's in the history – it's just not what he was writing about.

    http://www.moyhu.blogspot.com

  39. kuhnkat March 18, 2010 11:37 pm

    Actually Nick, it is more like asking how the foreign policies of the US from WW I forward contributed to the situation in the Current Middle East.Very valid questions whether YOU are interested in the answers or not

  40. TonyHansen March 19, 2010 2:44 pm

    Nick,The logic behind your reasoning escapes me.

  41. Grant Alexander March 21, 2010 3:27 pm

    Nick. Read the responses. CSIRO and BOM have been very, very very selective in the range of data they have used. If they were honest, object or scientific, then they would have used the data going back to 1900.

  42. Anonymous March 24, 2010 12:29 am

    Nick Stokes re 1960 Hollywood movie “On the Beach”.

    The world is nearing an end from massive nuclear explosions. We are in melbourne, which is doomed. At the end of the movie, a few people are going off in a submarine to try their luck.

    The few left-behind residents of Melbourne are lined up to get suicide pills from boxes marked “Government Property”. An officious bureaucrat lady is there with a clip board, asking the names of people to tick off her list. You can almost imagine her saying “Don’t be greedy, only one per person please”.

    It is one of my favourite scenes to demonstrate bureaucracy. Never mind that there will be nobody to read the list, she’s paid to tick off the names and she’ll be a valiant public servant, saving waste of resources to the end.

  43. geoffsherrington March 23, 2010 7:29 pm

    Nick Stokes re 1960 Hollywood movie “On the Beach”.The world is nearing an end from massive nuclear explosions. We are in melbourne, which is doomed. At the end of the movie, a few people are going off in a submarine to try their luck.The few left-behind residents of Melbourne are lined up to get suicide pills from boxes marked “Government Property”. An officious bureaucrat lady is there with a clip board, asking the names of people to tick off her list. You can almost imagine her saying “Don't be greedy, only one per person please”. It is one of my favourite scenes to demonstrate bureaucracy. Never mind that there will be nobody to read the list, she's paid to tick off the names and she'll be a valiant public servant, saving waste of resources to the end.

  44. geoffsherrington March 24, 2010 12:29 am

    Nick Stokes re 1960 Hollywood movie “On the Beach”.The world is nearing an end from massive nuclear explosions. We are in melbourne, which is doomed. At the end of the movie, a few people are going off in a submarine to try their luck.The few left-behind residents of Melbourne are lined up to get suicide pills from boxes marked “Government Property”. An officious bureaucrat lady is there with a clip board, asking the names of people to tick off her list. You can almost imagine her saying “Don't be greedy, only one per person please”. It is one of my favourite scenes to demonstrate bureaucracy. Never mind that there will be nobody to read the list, she's paid to tick off the names and she'll be a valiant public servant, saving waste of resources to the end.