Money…Lots and Lots of Money!

midwinter cottage 013The New Year party dust has settled.

People have returned to work and credit card bills are dropping on doormats all over the  world.

The reality of living has dawned, after a long party season, where many have struggled to just buy necessities.

midwinter cottage 006Recent figures released have stated that the rich have got richer and the poor poorer, with the severest erosion of the middle classes ever witnessed.

Profits announced by corporations defy any understanding of mathematics. 011I read the other day, that Bill Gates earns more profit on his investments, than himself and Melinda can insert into their foundation.

Bill has not actually worked in 14 years.

All this as many workers, already working overtime,  are having to apply for welfare and charity to keep their families out of extreme penury. 004I do not understand this form of economics and am not ashamed to say so…I really do not understand!

Here at Bealtaine I have lit the stove, on a grey, wet and windy day in early January.

As the fire roared up under a spitting kettle, my thoughts turned to those who rely solely on fossil fuel or electricity for warmth. 025Escalating costs for fuel is now prohibiting many from keeping a warm home.

Governments have failed, to put in place any substantial remedial action, that may help alleviate the burden of fuel costs.

There have been small measures, like attic insulation offered to those on minimum income…little indeed as the energy costs spiral. 022The cost of wind-generated energy must be very small indeed, compared to say, Nuclear.

I say this because I witness the one man in a white van, who services the Wind Turbines on the mountain opposite Bealtaine Cottage. 030He attends to these as and when they need attention…not on a daily basis, by any means.

I imagine  the maintenance costs, say, compared to power stations, are very minimal!

So where does the escalating costs of that electricity, generated by those turbines, actually go? 004There appears to be a lot of money in the world, with but a few holding the purse-strings…and that makes no sense at all!

We are surrounded by solutions to the most grievous and pressing poverty.

We are surrounded by wealth, held tightly by the few.


  1. Just found your site this last month and enjoy the comments. I think your voluntary simplicity life is probably the answer to many of our problems. Here in New Jersey (USA) our family has solar hot water and solar electricity on the roof. Mold is a problem in the winter but we have a/c in the hot summers. Being cheerful under your conditions is wonderful. Regards, Russ

    • Quite the opposite, Russ, my life is simply charmed! A little extra work is needed, but really not that much!
      A simplicity of living lends itself well to a quietness of mind and good general health and I am very happy!
      Blessings XXX

  2. I have been introduced to your beautiful cottage and website by my dear friend Chris. With regard to energy: two things occur to my husband and myself. Firstly, in an unstable world the UK government should be making us energy independent. There must be millions of acres of unused roof space just waiting to be used in the production of solar power. Governments should be giving much bigger grants to individuals or interest free loans to make this viable. Secondly, Why is our government not setting up our own nationalised energy company to provide proper competition for the big energy companies. There would be no need to service greedy share holders and so electricity could be sold at a much more competitive and lower price. We live near the West Wales coast and we feel the beautiful countryside is being ruined by the number of wind turbines being installed. It would seem that they use a fair proportion of any electricity they produce just to get them going when wind speeds are low. We would be very interested to hear what others think of these ideas.

  3. There are some misconceptions regarding wind power. Companies operating wind farms do not get paid for not producing energy, they are paid per unit or megawatt, plus a standing charge When you see some generators that aren’t turning it can be for various reasons. Some are standby, some are under repair and some have insufficient wind. Due to variations in wind direction, different banks of generators will operate. Almost half of the generators are held back in order to guarantee a continuous supply overall. If they fall short in their supply they actually pay a fine. At the moment we only have about 5% of electricity in reserve which is dangerously low, so we need all the energy we can get.

    • Here in Ireland, there is much concern, that the new overhead power lines being installed, to much protest across the country, is for exporting wind energy at a time when Irish citizens are living in energy poverty, prohibited from using sufficient electric for their needs due to escalating costs. The concern that profit, by selling energy produced in Ireland, is being put in front of the basic needs of the people.

  4. I wish we had brought an older house. Too late now and no chance for us to move. No chimneys here and no chance to install a multi-fuel stove as our council like most require all stoves to be their ‘permitted’ ones at over £3000.
    We did what was advised and insulated roof and cavity walls. I wish we hadn’t. The damp and mould is constant. Having lived here over 20 years. We had no mould and damp before insulating. It was cold but dry. Now it’s warmer but constantly damp. I am continually running a dehumidifier and washing mould off walls and ceilings and dealing with fabrics and furnishing that have mould. Opening windows makes no difference and lets all the warmth out. Last year the mould continued all summer even with the windows open.

    Like most people we can only afford to have the heating on twice a day on minimum, unless it’s really cold.
    So the energy companys charge what they like and we have no choice but to try and pay for it.

    • A stove would really help the problem with damp as it would dry the air and help to vent the atmosphere. I was unaware of the prohibition on stoves except those permitted by councils…not that I ever really took any notice of councils when I lived in London…bureaucrats and I do not get along. £3,000 is a huge amount! I have opened an account with my local credit union in the past, to pay for big items. When I saved half the amount, they loaned me the full amount on reasonable interest…leaving my savings intact. Health is so very important and a mouldy home is not good for health!

    • Re the damp problem. One solution is to buy a heat exchanger. It costs far less to run than a dehumidifier, though I accept there is some disruption to installing the unit. Try Kiltox, for instance; I’ve just got a unit for our old cottage in the west of Ireland, which is dry in winter (because of the woodstove drawing air through the house) but is damp in summer, when there’s little movement of air inside. I bought the unit on the recommendation of a friend who said it changed her life! We shall see what happens here. There’s a passive heat exchanger now on the market too, called the Ventive.

      The more insulation you put in, the more you need to ensure adequate changes of air in the house.

      Hope this helps.

  5. I am not against wind power but what our government is up to is to cover the cover the country in turbines to sell to the UK so that they can met their emissions targets. I was looking at something called the solar sterling engine which seems a very interesting idea, don’t know if anyone has heard of it or made one.

    • I have heard of the plan to sell wind power energy to the UK and in fact, heard discussions about this years ago! The people here in Ireland need affordable energy…now! I have not heard about SSE, but will look into it, thanks X

  6. A little personal story as to vulnerability:

    I live in a building in a highly trendy part of Montreal – very classy when built over a hundred years ago – with almost no insulation. I’m now in a third day of no water from the taps due to pipes having frozen. Thankfully so far the electricity has not failed – which would make it necessary for myself and feline to take refuge in some public place. I’m buying water for cooking, melting snow for other water needs such as toilet-flushing. At least there is no shortage of snow for the purpose! A major fear is the other shoe dropping – pipes split on freezing causing a deluge when they thaw. I expect that my landlord has fine insolutation at his house and is, as usually, sitting pretty.

    So, folks, if you think ‘our’ capitalist devil-take-the hindmost ‘system’ works, even in cities of the ‘developed world’, have another think.

    The sound you hear is me, gritting teeth. :]

    best to all,


      • Thank you my dear, but it’s lots better than in a Syrian refugee camp. Even if electrics go out at O degrees F, won’t actually die. Inconvenience and some humiliation merely. But do hope to move before next winter to somewhere with more clement weather (near Vancouver). For the present, taking it as a challenge.


  7. Such a complicated issue, you raise many points. Nuclear power stations have never run to full capacity in this country, but they have provided the materials for weapons for the arms race. Wind power is hugely unpopular with the British government and they have managed quite well to indoctrinate the public with negativity regarding the installation of wind turbines. I think the problem has been that they can’t “patent” the wind. Goodness knows what would happen if we all started to produce our own power and grew our food as well!

    • Wouldn’t that be a real revolution!
      I am happy to see wind turbines, but would be happier to pay a rent to the government for a small turbine for my own use. The overall cost effectiveness of wind turbines has never been realized in terms of the charges here in Ireland where they are growing in numbers across the land!
      Nuclear power is destructive all round!

    • This will be the same British government that forces the climate change levy on generators who then pass it onto their retail customers by a simple sleight of hand.
      The same British government that forces the renewable energy obligation onto the suppliers who pass its full financial cost onto their retail customers.
      The same British government who then hands over the billions it makes from these two initiatives to the turbine farm builders/operators (mostly foreign companies).
      The same British government which then forces the National Grid to pay the farm operators to feather their turbines to prevent them from upsetting the grid. In plain English the turbine farmers are paid for not producing electricity!
      This same British government which is enforcing smart meter installations which pollute the home with EMF’s and forcing the end customers to pay for their own personal brain frying installations.

      Mind it was the same British government who also funded the nuclear power station expansion in my youth so it seems they have simply moved the subsidy from nuclear to wind in a country which has a massive coastline with two tides a day and is sitting on 300-500 years supply of coal. The government of the United Kingdom is the enemy of the people of the British Isles.
      Rant over, apologies Collette.
      If this is too much then please do not publish it.

    • There are many problems with every type of electricity generation. All pollute the planet one way or another. (Google “rare earth mining China” to see the environmental damage the manufacture of these turbines creates).
      Equally the real facts regarding the different types of power generation are never put into the public domain. Governments are bought and paid for by big business to ensure people live in fear and will therefore go on paying taxes which are designed to transfer your wealth from your pocket to someone else’s. Mutuality has gone out of the window.

      There are numerous energy generating devices in existence which would render the grid and it’s suppliers/controllers redundant overnight, have a look here
      and this is where the real criminality takes place when the people in governments and companies forming energy cartels, never ever forget that people are doing this to other people not dead entities like governments and corporations, work to keep the majority of the people at heel by suppressing and in many cases destroying these devices or preventing their construction with fake ‘concerns’.

      I find myself unable to argue against anything she says. It appears I too am an outlaw and in my estimation you Collette are one too.

      (Note here from Colette…I have removed video as I will not have anyone propagating the use of violence on my website.)

      • Josie argues that people should be armed…I do not agree with her!
        I abhor destruction and violence of any kind.
        So, in response, Billy, I am not an outlaw…I use my intelligence and example to encourage change and inspire empowerment.
        Change does not happen for the better down the barrel of a gun! Never! Colette X

        • Hi Collette, thank you for continuing to be an inspiration for us with your wonderful work (took your advice on re trellis by the way and will send you photos…) Re wind turbines: I used to think they were a relatively benign necessity. Now I have come to understand that those large industrial-sized ones are most certainly not a sustainable solution. The amount of embedded energy/environmental cost in manufacturing and installing them outweighs any of the “clean” energy they produce in their short lifespan of 20-30 years. You are quite right that (in the short term) our governments would better serve us by grant aiding the purchase of mini turbines for individual/small scale generation. However, the heavilly subsidized wind-farms are a bonanza for private investors keen on control through centralisation. Same old same old… The long term answer for our energy needs can only be through the relaxation of patent restriction orders on “over-unity” or”free” energy devices. Every home could be it’s own little power factory. No moving parts to the device -so it never breaks down; no polution; no profits for the robber-barons (hmm, pipe dream, right?) The work of Brian O’Leary, Steven Greer, Paul Pantone, John Hutchison etc suggests otherwise. The future energy solutions have been with us and “concept-proven” (like nuclear fusion 25 years ago) since the time of Tesla. What we don’t have is a mainstream dissemination of the information regarding the research results of maverick inventors. Thus, whenever there is talk about “sustainable” energy we are left with the familiar nonsense of wind/solar/nuclear and the real alternative is not even mentioned. Why? The status quo shifts just a tad. Love and keep planting. The rest of the world is catching up, step by step… Lol & Terri XXX

          • Thanks for including the names of those who have worked on this incredible sounding energy…I shall google them all and read further!
            As I sit here, the stove is warming the cottage with local wood. Lights are off. The kettle has boiled for my tea and there’s spuds baking in the oven…all for free! I have swept the floors…no hoover now! I use a hot water bottle…no electric blanket! Energy? Use as little as we can get away with and defeat the robber barons who imagine they can hold us to ransom.
            Good to hear from you Lol…Blessings to all XXX

Your comments are welcome!