“The last time I used your toilet I hurt my neck.” “Then you are defiantly doing it wrong.”
As I was finishing last weeks aimless rant (I have noticed that other blogs have a specific theme but that does strike me as a little dull and limiting, anyway back to the news) a story popped up on the BBC website that seemed to be ignored by most. I think this may have been because Australia caught fire and it was white, English speaking people being affected so this story was ignored. It was reported that your Government, you remember them, elected by you to govern for you not to govern you, wants to construct another massive database and this time it will contain details about your travel plans. Mostly about flight information i.e. too where you flew and how long you were there and, yet again, it will save us from terrorism and illegal immigrants. It is amazing how many things will save from these twin terrors but yet they still exist. Oooooh, spooky. It has become a stock excuse for all invasions of your privacy. “It’s for your own good; it will save you from terrorism and stop illegal immigration. No, honest, it will.” And it’s absolute rot, it will only tell the Government where you are and what you are doing, who you are seeing and what you are viewing. And we think that North Korea is oppressive.
This is just one of 3 bye bye to your civil liberties stories this week because you could also have a Dutch politician not being allowed into Britain because he made a film that was rude about Islam or a man having trouble getting a pub licence because he doesn’t want to put CCTV inside his pub. The CCTV in the pub story is quite simple so let’s do that first. Nick Gibson from Islington in London has been told by the Metropolitan police that in order from him to get a licence to serve alcohol he will have to put CCTV cameras in his pub and hand over any film of his customers on request. He spoke to his local MP who said “my priority is the safety of local residents and if a camera at the pub helps, then I think it should be supported.” She asked for no evidence from the police that a camera or 2 INSIDE the pub would make the slightest difference to crime or public safety. She just thinks CCTV is a good idea everywhere. That is why your civil liberties are vanishing, those who are paid to care don’t. As a lot of crime happens in the home does she also think that cameras in the home are a good idea as well? It would protect people from domestic violence and break-ins. You may think that this is an extreme vision but if I can’t go for a quiet beer with out being filmed whilst drinking inside the pub can it be to long before someone suggests it?
The second story was that the Dutch politician Geert Wilders was banned from entering Britain this week. He was coming here to show his film, which is critical of Islam, to various peers. They had invited him to the House of Lords to discuss his film and the views expressed within but the Home Office refused him entry because he posed a threat to our society. Our we not grown up enough to protect our selves from some body else’s opinion? A wide range of people were upset be this decision including many moderate Muslim groups who wanted the chance to debate this man and to challenge his views and his interpretation of their religion. Now as you now I not a fan of religion for many reasons but I was impressed with the sensible approach of these people. To quote some one more succinct than I, I may not agree with what you say but I will defend, to the death, your right to say it. So it seems that we don’t have free speech any more. You can not offend a religion but it is alright for the religion to offend you and have illegal employment practises (women in the priesthood but not being allowed to be bishops. Similar in Islam), views and sermons given that are offensive about homosexuality and incite violence against them, which is illegal but ok if you have faith.
What is the point of the government’s Advisory Council on the Misuse of Drugs? They have published 2 pieces of advice recently and both of them were about the down grading of some drugs, cannabis and ecstasy, and both of them were critised and ignored by the government because to Daily Mail and Express wouldn’t publish a positive headline. No science, whether it biological or social, was harmed in the making of this decision. Their argument wasn’t helped by a really bad use of statistics by Prof. David Nutt, the chairman of the ACMD. He said that ecstasy was no more dangerous than horse riding. His evidence for this was that 30 people die for ecstasy (although this disputed by many because most deaths involve ecstasy but most have traces of other drugs in them or on them) and 100 people die in horse riding accidents. Conclusive proof then. Sigh, where to start. Just because less people die from something really doesn’t mean that it is safer than another thing. There are so many different variables to take into consideration, such as the number of people taking part in the activity. If a person invented a new extreme sport and was the only person to do it and was killed doing it you could say that only one person had died doing the sport so it was clearly safe but you would be wrong because 100% of people doing the activity were killed. Oh statistics, what fun we can have.
Whilst we on the subject, sort of, one event is proof of nothing. One cold week is not proof that global climate change is nonsense, one hot summer is not proof that the climate is changing and one 13 year old boy fathering a child is not proof of “broken Britain” David Cameron.
Yes, yes, he is very young and it is very bad. He was 12 when he impregnated the young lady in question. What we should be focusing on is why he wasn’t doing something else instead. Why wasn’t he playing in his local park or at a youth club? Oh yes, the last Tory government sold the park and withdraw the funding for the club, I remember now. Do you want to know why children have sex David Cameron? It’s because there is nothing else for them to do. Sex is free and it feels good. They live in a sexualised world but are not aloud to have proper sex education at a young enough age because you and your supporters think that it is a bad idea but have no problem with massive corporations advertising at them. And what sells Mr Cameron? Yes, that’s right, sex sells. Our culture is saturated with sex but we withhold the knowledge on how to deal with it from our children.
I do have one question though for the young lady involved here. What on earth possessed you to boink a boy who looks about 8? He does not look old for his age; in fact he looks very, very young for his age.
Really, leave the children alone little girl. Oh and in the News of the World today 2 other boys claim to be the father and want a DNA test. It’s like Jeremy Kyle for the CBBC set. Dear The Parents, find your children something else to do, please.
In environmental news this week I have learnt that an area 3 times the size of Britain in the middle of the Pacific Ocean is covered in our plastic rubbish. Because of the way the currents flow and the fact that it does not rot a lot of the rubbish that is dumped into the sea seems to ends up floating altogether in the middle of the ocean. The planet is doomed.
The Co-op has banned up to 11 pesticides and other farming chemicals that some think are involved in the massive slump in honey bee numbers in the UK. Now, some people aren’t too concerned about the honey bee but without them there would be no food. Bees pollinate your plants so that they produce what you eat. The Co-op have said that they will stop using the chemicals until proper studies have been carried out into the effects of these chemicals and if they are shown to be safe then they will start using them again. What a very sensible approach and as they are Britain’s biggest farmer, they have 70000 hectares under cultivation; let us hope they have some influence over other farmers. They have also announced that they are going to leave strips around their fields unploughed so the flowers can grow there to help support the bees.
A French aircraft carrier has arrived in Sunderland were it is to be broken up. The ship contains an upsetting amount of asbestos and its arrival has caused many environmental groups to splutter on their morning fennel and aniseed tea (it’s good for their digestion). “Why should it bring its toxic cargo here?” they ask. Well if it comes here we have strict rules for the safe disposal of the problem materials and if it didn’t it would probably end up on some Indian beach being taken apart by hand without any thoughts for the safety of the workers or the environment.
There are 110 categories in the Grammy’s. 2 things, 1 how come I still haven’t got one? I know I write this every year but it’s funny. And, 2, my god, that ceremony must take hours. Rarely do I admire the famous but, bloody hell, these people have staying power.
A man called Terry Spencer has died. No I hadn’t heard of him either but he led an incredible life. As a youth he faked a letter from a senior RAF official so which said that he was a great bloke and he should be allowed to join. He then had a distinguished career as a fighter pilot. He then went on to develop a technique for bringing down the Germen “doodlebug” in flight. Google it if you don’t know what it is. He would fly along side it, match its speed in his Spitfire and then sort of nudge it with his wing so that it was pushed off course. This man is my hero but he is was not finished. He also holds the world record for the worlds lowest ever, successful, parachute jump.
On leaving the RAF he then went on to have a career as a world renowned photographer, touring with the Beatles and joining the CIA during the failed invasion of the Bay of Pigs. He dies within 24 hours of his wife.
I have joined my local Credit Union. Local savings and loans for local people. I’m not sure why Credit Unions are not more popular in England as 30% in Ireland are members and 50% in America. Having trouble with payroll at work though as they don’t seem able to sort out payroll giving. How hard can it be? Might have to do some sort of standing ordering from my bank account, which was what I was trying to avoid, poop.
Ok, awards now. If has taken a little while to get here so I hope it’s worth it.
The Award For Hardest Job of the Week,
This goes to the new Zimbabwean finance minister. A new unity government has been sworn-in in Zimbabwe and one of the jobs given to the MDC was that of the finance department in a country with inflation of about 2.5million%. And you thought that Alistair I-can’t-answer-a-straight-forward-question-with-a- straight-forward-answer Darling had a hard job.
The Award For Story Most Likely to Make You Go Ugh of the Week,
The woman with the longest finger nails in the world has had them all broken in a car crash. One of the nails was 2ft 8inches which is just unpleasant.
The Award For British Sporting Success of the Week
I said last week that England were playing Italy midweek in the football. I was wrong, sorry. They were losing to Spain instead. The sporting success award goes to the British Woman’s Skeleton Bobsleigh Team who are now top of the world championships.
The Award For Surprise Information of the Week,
Last week I was talking about tax avoidance and this week I learnt from the Mark Thomas podcasts that HM Customs and Revenue rent the buildings that they work from from a company that doesn’t pay tax in the UK, oh the irony. The same seems to be true for train companies who rent their trains from a company who doesn’t pay tax in the UK. Oh and the 2 blokes who now run RBS are non-doms and don’t pay taw here. Makes you proud to be British.
For those of you wondering, bamboo socks are lovely. Really soft and comfortable. I encourage you to buy them; you can get them form Ebay.
I’m going to try and make my own T-shirts but I think that may be a little harder than I think so watch this space. Well not literally, that would be silly. Have a lovely week, I’m going to try and get some early carrots in at the allotment.