The Rod Blog

13 September 2005

Brain Drained

Q) What does an engineer call a creek?
A) A drain.

Today’s photo shows what happens when you convert the disorderly, meandering line of a creek into a straight-edged concrete jacket. All neat and tidy, this is the love-child of someone who hangs their tools on a shadow-board. Not the haphazard toolbox you’d find in my garage.

The drain has done its job. Water is efficiently whisked away, out of sight, and the hydro-rationalist can park his bulldozer at night, satisfied that all is well.

Similar thinking grips the minds of some the name of economics. Society is a collection of individuals who are units of consumption. The more they consume, the more money flows through the economy, and the more workers we need to provide for them. So round, and round we go in a bloody great perpetual motion machine.

In physics, we know we can’t have perpetual motion. But luckily for us economics is different, and there’s no chance our little planet will end up squeezed dry like an old lemon.

PS: my apologies to any engineers. I’m sure the modern engineer probably really is environmentally aware.


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