Is up at Charles Crawford's place.
Monday, 30 November 2009
Friday, 27 November 2009
There is no way that the British government wouldn’t either extradite Mr McKinnon (Labour) or invite him into a darkened room in Vauxhall Cross with the Americans in attendance (Conservatives), even the Liberal Democrats if you explained it to them slowly and often enough would allow the Yanks to talk to him. He’s the perfect Cut-out/false flag to any number of intelligence services who would want to hack the US government but don’t want their fingerprints all over their work. The Chinese MSS and PLA secret services spring to mind but they’re not the only ones engaged in hacking. Any agent would thank his lucky stars at finding a good hacker with an autism spectrum disorder who believes in aliens. And you can bet both GCHQ and the NSA will be giving this guy a rather tough interrogation to try and find out if there is a link.
Will the US government go easy on the guy afterwards – err unlikely. The US intelligence community wants blood after the disastrous and botched release of Al-Megrahi by the Scottish Government. In Mr. McKinnon they have their perfect Admiral Byng regards hacking their secure Defence networks. He’s not a US citizen and isn’t going to get voters writing to their Congressman demanding his release (unlike somebody like Pollard or Kadish). The fact that he has Asperger’s syndrome is a bonus, the Yanks will wonder why he didn’t just hit Vegas with Tom Cruse, he could stop off at Area 51 on his way.
Does this mean that there won’t be comeback on the Labour government over this? Well yes and no. They signed this farcical and one-sided extradition treaty, so they should naturally take the blame. Like all their other botched laws and agreements, there is no way any remotely competent government would let this treaty stand. And everybody knows Gordon would be attaching the electrodes to the guys meat and two veg personally if it meant a decent press conference with Obama. But does it make a difference to voting patterns? It adds the odd civil libertarian to the “Anybody but Labour” vote, but most people seem to have more than made up their mind about the incompetence of this current illiberal administration.
Thursday, 26 November 2009
There have been some scurrilous rumours about our new unelected EU
non-entity Foreign Secretary accepting funds from the KGB. Despite it being documented fact that the KGB funded the CND (see Mitrokhin Archives) under their “Useful Idiots” programme. And despite the fact that Lady Ashton was the treasurer of said organisation of useful idiots; she denies any and all rumours linking her, The KGB and their love of handing over big wads of cash to CND dickheads*.
Naturally unlike the peacenik shit for brains who never had the “joy” of living in their Socialist utopia, those that did live on the wrong side of the Iron Curtain are rather reluctant to have this foreign secretary picking up the phone to Moscow to protect their interests. Especially since it could allegedly be her old KGB (Now FSB) handler at the other end; and she could start waffling on about “The Weather in Leningrad is cold this time of year” and “The starlings are leaving the nest”. On the plus side I suppose using her code name could save time. If she says she’s Lady Ashton, then Putin will go “Who the fuck's that?”. But if she allegedly says “It’s Grey Squirrel” then at least Putin will allegedly know he’s speaking to Agent 287451/B.
I can now put the worries of the following nations to rest - Poland, The Czech Republic, Slovakia, Slovenia, Hungary, Latvia, Lithuania, Estonia, Romania and Bulgaria. I have photographic proof that Lady Ashton never accepted funds from the KGB. If you look to Stalin’s right you can clearly see that Lady Ashton is not there. She is therefore innocent of these wicked accusations.
* The money was used to fund hairdressers to fix up the member's dreadlocks and R&D into a better phrase than “Nuclear Power, No Thanks”. As the only thing they came up with was the pitiful “Not in my name” the KGB Pulled funding. The Captain that recommended giving Soviet money to CND in the first place was shot, and the KGB manual was re-written stating that KGB operatives were not to recruit any Westerner whose lips moved when they read “The Famous Five”.
A happy Thanksgiving to all my American readers. For those of us who aren't from the Colonies, this is a celebration of the survival of a bunch of joyless puritanism troublemakers, kicked out of England for wanting to ban Christmas and dancing, who only lived through their first winter thanks to the kindness of the native population.
The Natives were given smallpox, and eventually had their country nicked by way of a 'thank you'. European settlers round the world have never been exactly punctilious in observing treaty resolutions with non-Europeans and this is especially true of the young United States, which freed from the vestigial restraining influence of the British Empire, allowed it to follow its philosophy of
lebensraum manifest destiny. The events celebrated today happened a long time before the USA was even a concept, but foundation myths are important.
There were some cool and interesting people cutting around New England, Virginia and Louisiana in the early 1600s, some of whom were there before John Carver's rabble. Plymouth was the only colony to have been founded as an idealogical rather than pecuniary venture, so I have never understood why the USA, a country whose 'business is business' chose the most economically inept bunch of religious fundamentalists, founders of the second least successful colony in the Americas, to be their "pilgrim fathers".
Whilst I love the USA and regard its declaration of independence one of the most perfect political texts ever written, they do have some strange and self-serving ideas about their history. Which is why I call today "fundamentalism, smallpox and genocide" day. Enjoy your turkey.
Tuesday, 24 November 2009
Utterly devoid of inspiration, and filled with a crushing ennui.
This post by Mr Eugenides is very good though. Whilst I have a terrible case of Writer's block and Travelgall has something unpleasant called "work", Readers will have to be satisfied by my occasional pointing to something I like.
Monday, 23 November 2009
Friday, 20 November 2009
Someone your average accountant wouldn't invite round to dinner because he looks so boring, from a country no-one (not even the people who live there) cares about, has been given a job that no-one wanted and doesn't matter.
We can tell that the president of Europe doesn't matter because the French have not come over all French on us on the news that a Frenchman is not doing the job. They did not even put one up for the role, 'settling' instead for getting a Frenchman into a job regulating an industry, finance, in which we excel, and the French want to destroy.
When faced with a Euro Arse-fucking, Gordon Brown bends over and says "give it to me, big boy, hard as you like". They don't even have to spit first.
Listening to Sir Hugh Orde this morning, I was struck by the notion that there are an awful lot of people currently engaged in running the country who really don't get this whole Democracy schtick.
Sir Hugh announced that if Conservative plans to introduce democratically elected police chiefs were followed through, he would resign from the chair of the Association of Chief Police Officers. The reasons he gave were that such political people would upset the independence of policing - he actually said "this is a democracy". He just doesn't get it. The same argument comes from all technocrats on independent bodies and quangos, of which ACPO is just one. They are using the idea that politics is a dirty word, that 'politics' has no place in the running of the country. They're wrong, because where they say 'politics', they mean 'democracy', with all its messy compromises and public argument which are so abhorrent to the bureaucrat's mind.
Unfortunately the bureaucrats and technocrats are just going to have to suck it up, or fuck off. Bye-Bye, sir Hugh. It's been nice having you with us, and thanks for your hard work in Northern Ireland. Don't let the door hit your arse on the way out....
Cameron may not be everyone's cup of tea, but he's serious about localism, and this plan to bring the police under democratic, local control is as radical as it is overdue. We need to send a message to the people who run the country - not just in the police, but across the whole of the quango state. Independent technocrats do not good governance make, as the Soviet union so comprehensively demonstrated. The people need their say too, especially when they disagree with what you're doing. The police for example have been smashing the motorist and ignoring the burglary for too long. With directly elected chiefs, this will change.
Good riddance to Sir Hugh and his vision of an independent (meaning unaccountable) police force. You're going to be reminded whom you serve, and you clearly don't like it.
Next up: the rest of the Quangosphere.
Wednesday, 18 November 2009
This is the most brilliant example of Victimhood poker from a leftie I've ever seen. Basically Laurie Pennie, (this post should get a mention in dispatches here too) argues that Straight white men cannot be discriminated against, even when they're in a minority and SOAS's student union should not therefore be appointing a Straight, white man's officer. Or at least that's what I thought she was saying through the double think and bollocks.
...white, straight males do not face discrimination on the grounds of race, sexuality or gender – and that to suggest they do marginalises the experiences of oppressed groups. SOAS students’ union women’s officer Elly Badcock said: “Women have a women’s officer because we’re fundamentally disadvantaged in society, and liberation campaigns exist for those who have been systematically and structurally discriminated against, specifically because of their sexuality, gender or race.
“Straight white men have never been discriminated against on these fronts, so claiming that they are an oppressed group smacks of whingeing.”While we're on the subject of double think and bollocks, here's a brilliant post from Counting Cats dealing with Psychic TV.
I used to think the art of the con was saying what people wanted to hear. It can be and I suspect that is very much the art of the personal one-on-one con but when dealing with masses you just make-up something utterly incredible. You won’t hook in everyone but you will hook-in the sort of people who will then believe the next thing. And the next… And that’s the brilliance of things like Sat TV and the internet. They cast out their lies to a crowd that is atomised. Not a real mass where there might well be a small boy prepared to shout, “But I can see his willy!”This is applicable to socialism and left-wing group think as it is to spiritualism. Mention Gramsci or Marx to give your prejudice an intellectual veneer and ignore the evidence. Shout louder to get the credulous onside.
But, then crowds can be manipulated too. And they can also be manipulated by telling them utter bunk so what do I know
Go read both.
Every morning on Radio 4's Today program, ten to eight is the God slot, where some man in a dress, usually with a beard says something inoffensive about how a paranoid schizophrenic who lived several thousand years ago thought that people should be nice to each other, whatever the interpretation of his witterings since. If the speaker doesn't fit this description, then it's a female Daily Mail columnist, who thinks sex is "icky" bleating about how family is important, and one shouldn't shag around, probably at precisely the same time as her husband is up to his nuts in the Au Pair.
Some atheists think...
...Every edition of Thought for the Day is a rebuke to those many people in our society who do not have religious beliefsTerry Sanderson of the National Secular Society needs to get a grip. Secularism is not the absence of Sky-fairy pestering in public life, it is about not giving God-botheres privileged status. 10 minutes on Radio 4 does not mean that secularists are discriminated against, any more than Songs of Praise on a Sunday does. 'In our time' and other thought-provoking slots have dealt with issues without reference to religion, and the Catholic church doesn't kick off about that. Secularists need to accept that Many people believe, and a prayer on the radio does no harm. I take the view that Thought for the day allows both believers, those of faiths other than that being discussed; and indeed atheists too a chance to understand how people of other faiths think.
I find it useful and interesting to think about what Guru Nanack or St. Augustine might have thought about the great issues of the day, whether or not I believe in the God that inspired their belief. Indeed secularists need to Know thy Enemy. After all, in the scale of harm done by religion, Thought for the Day is not exactly the collected sermons of Abu Hamza.
Tuesday, 17 November 2009
Thomas the Tank Engine was depressed, he was busy shunting trains in a Zanu Labour area, and ZanuLabour areas always depressed Thomas. When he fell asleep in the sidings, chavs always spray painted willies on him. And then the Fat Controller came along, and said...
“Thomas I need you to move some trains in Clapham Junction, Warrington Bank Quay, Preston and Luton. Oh and most importantly of all Barking. Isn’t that exciting?”
“Oh No” said Thomas “More Labour areas, they smell like Salty the Dockside Diesel after the Guano ship arrives”.
“Oh you haven’t heard the news” Said the Fat Controller “They all have shiny new stations thanks to the government”.
“That’s a bit of a co-incidence” said Thomas “It’s not like they are no rubbish stations smelling of urine in Conservative seats”.
“Oh and you also have to go to Crewe” Said the Fat Controller. That’s a Conservative area now but its got a shiny new station too”.
“Oh what a bloody co-incidence. The one seat Gordon Brown wants to win back after it showed wearing a top hat and sneering wouldn’t win you the seat”.
“Look” said the Fat Controller “If you want a letter of thanks from the Prime Minister you’ll stop those comments”.
“He’ll probably spell my name wrong anyway, honestly Percy can spell better than him, and he was hardly the sharpest knife in the box even before the Level Crossing incident”.
“You’re on thin ice Thomas, Remember Harriet the Harridan wants to replace you with a lady tank engine”. Said the fat Controller “And the Troublesome Trucks – Aslef and RMT will make your life difficult. The people are New Labour, and New Labour are the people, remember that”.
Thomas the Tank Engines words to the fat controller were lost as Gordon blew his steam whistle.
With apologies to the Rev W V Awdry
Monday, 16 November 2009
America is a basically uncivilised place. The entire continent has given just two things of worth to world cuisine. New England clam chowder and the Waffle, which may be a Dutch invention, but perfected by our cousins over the pond, who found maple syrup to be its perfect partner. Now it is true that Americans then spoil it by adding bacon (yuk!), and you can rest assured that I will not perpetrate such barbarism.
I would, however, like to make public my deepest thanks to the delightful Momentary Academic for her very kind gift of the mother of all Waffle Irons, which arrived today. I shall be trying it out later, and look forward to Shakespeare, rugby and waffles when she comes over to
civilisation the UK in January!
It is an oft heard refrain that it's not the prisoner's fault, it's society's that people commit crime; to know all is to forgive all. And It is an equally oft heard refrain that such a response to crime is an abrogation of personal responsibility and the vast majority of people brought up by single parents on sink estates do not become feral one-man crime waves. Thus the two positions I've characterised as representing the "it's society's fault" and "prison works" stare at each other across intellectual barricades made of Daily Mail and Guardian editorials. Neither, and both are right.
Ben, the blogging lag, makes an interesting observation
There are those who are so physically destructive and dangerous that communities may not be able to deal with them. Prison may make sense in that context, although we should ask ourselves how aboriginal, nomadic societies manage to cope with such people without the luxury of prisonAboriginal societies would have simply killed such people, but I think more interesting is the extent to which they would not have existed. For all our material wealth, western society is uniquely stressful. Most people are caged lions, pacing up and down a cell far too small for them, and we are not given the opportunity to express the behaviours which we evolved to express, which include violence, and the creation of strong group hierarchies. It takes a lot of conditioning to make people fit into the atomised society we have created. Some people, as a result of flawed upbringings do not have that conditioning necessary to succeed, and some of these end up in prison...
...most of those in prison are not violent or sexual predators. Rather, they are damaged people with messed up lives and little stake in their communities. Putting them in prison not only fails to deal with their particular flaws, it also strips them of what little social and personal capital they had, which helps explain why most return to prisonTo rehabilitate the petty thief, the benefit fraudster, the drunken punch-up initiator, the street mugger you need to give people the social capital that will allow the individual to function in society on release.That means prison education. You also need to give them a stake in their communities. That means not allowing decades of CRB checks which prevent some ex-cons getting work. This means accepting that their environment contributed enormously to their behaviour and working with that to try to resolve the problems.
Personally, I think the kafkaesque nature of our criminal justice system fails because the punishment is too distant to the crime for the broken people who enter the criminal justice system to put the two together psychologically. Prison, also isn't the punishment it's meant to be for petty offenders - they spend too little time in prison and loose too little for it to be an effective deterrent, but the experience and record of prison will prevent many offenders getting work, which makes reoffending more likely. Worse than the failures towards prisoners, is the sense amongst victims that justice is rarely done.
What we need is instant punishment which doesn't destroy the life of the perpetrator needlessly. Restitution, cleaning up graffiti, paying for stolen goods should be considered for minor offences. If these can be dealt with inside the community, as they used to be by local magistrates, quickly and efficiently, then crime will become associated with punishment, rather than the tedious and bureaucratic process incomprehensible to most of those within it, which criminal justice has become. For more serious offences like burglary and theft, Flogging is easily understood, unpleasant, inexpensive and quick. Ideal for minor violent or persistent offenders. If carried out in public, there would be a sense of 'justice done' when the miscreant is cut down. Apart from a very sore back, which will trouble him for a few weeks, he can then go about his life having been punished, but not crushed. The flip side of giving a criminal a stake in society, is giving society a stake in punishment. Half-time entertainment at football matches perhaps?
Scrap prison for all but the most dangerous and disturbed criminals, and those persistent criminals who would benefit from some enforced education and rehabilitation, and bring back the lash for punishment of the thieving little scrotes who make people's lives a misery. If they can be flogged within 3 days of committing the offence, then this might actually even work as a deterrent.
Restitutive justice is probably more just to both victim and perpetrator than the bureaucratic abortion of the way we deal with petty offences now. Where that fails, Flogging: Less barbaric, and considerably cheaper than prison, which leaves prison for the real cunts from whom we need to be protected. Simple.
Though I have criticised Richard North in the past, his Romp through Afghan History, and how it affects attitudes today is essential reading.
The Pashtun Tribes
18th & 19th Centuries
Early 20th Century
He and I may draw different conclusions, but these posts are spot on.
Friday, 13 November 2009
Now that St. Tony of Albion and Bananaman have been seen their EU top-job ambitions dashed, the UK government is touting Baron Mandelson of Foy in the County of Herefordshire and Hartlepool in the County of Durham, or Lord Fondlebum of Rio to his friends, as the EU's high representative for foreign affairs.
Many instinctive bloggertarians will be horrified that the minister, who, it will be pointed out, had to resign twice in disgrace, is about to get himself a no-doubt well paid position in Brussels just as the Labour ship he helped navigate is crashing catastrophically onto the rocks.
I don't think this is fair; Mandelson's record is one of a loyal Lieutenant calmly suggesting to Captain Blair, and Later Brown, that "perhaps that is not the right way, sir"; the difference is when Brown took over, the power sent him almost completely insane, and nothing Mandelson could do would stop an increasingly delusional captain steering straight for every rock he couldn't see, hurling Nokias at anyone who dared point out the catastrophic policy failures and upcoming cliffs. Brown is determined to destroy the ship, and go down with it. Fondlebum cannot be held entirely responsible for the disaster of the Labour government, as he is one of the only competent individuals in it. He is also, surprisingly for a former communist, an idealogical fellow traveller with those of us on the right. As EU Commissioner, his sterling defence of free trade and against French protectionism won him few friends, but was the right thing to do. He certainly earned my respect.
Mandelson is an extremely astute political operator, and one with the potential to advance the cause of free trade within the EU and world wide. He has deal-making experience from his time as Northern Ireland secretary, and was able to bring those two warring tribes around a table and thrash out a deal on power sharing and the thorny issue of policing. I can think of few people who would do a better job advancing world trade talks, and persuading America and China that tariff wars are not the way forward. The left think he's one of them, but actually he'd be a globalist's Manchurian candidate.
A Very British Dude enthusiastically supports Peter Mandelson for EU High Representative. And it's not entirely because I want the most competent Labour politician out of the way during the upcoming election campaign, though that is a clear ancillary benefit.
Thursday, 12 November 2009
American Studies (if you want to be up to your nuts in Cheerleaders, apply to Texas A&M, don’t pretend you give two hoots about American Literature).
Golf Management Studies
Watersports science and development – i.e. Learning to Surf (University of Plymouth)
And a gem I found in a Google search – Equestrian Psychology (Glyndwr University)
One that might be worth a closer look…
Sexual Health Studies - University of Central Lancashire. Cue Jokes about the Practical Exam.
Any other ideas?
Of course Libertarians should oppose a DNA database on a point of principle, but it is difficult to argue the practical costs to people who use the "if you've nothing to hide" argument. Now personally, I think anyone who uses that argument should be locked up for 42 days, but it is a common view. It is the line taken by the editorials of the two best-selling papers in the UK, for example and one therefore you must engage with.
The ID card fundamentally changes the relationship between the state and the citizen, because it forces you to account for your presence anywhere. The police can ask you for your papers, without having to give a reason. This is even more so for those on the DNA database: if your DNA is at any crime scene (a few cells will suffice) then it is you who must prove your innocence - or an innocent explanation for your DNA's presence.
This will create 2 classes of citizen in the eyes of the legal system. Those who are on the DNA database, who have to prove their innocence, and those who aren't who remain innocent until proven Guilty. But DNA can "prove innocence" they say, to which I point out that DNA evidence is not necessary for a prosecution. As the database grows larger, the likelihood of false positives increases, and its utility diminishes. With CRB checks proliferating, we are in danger of eroding the principle of criminals "paying ones debt to society", when because being convicted of anything increases the cost of insurance, housing, reduces the likelihood of finding work, and being under constant suspicion, actively mitigates against rehabilitation.
Whilst the DNA technology is impressive, do you honestly believe that it is infallible or open to manipulation by zealous law enforcement personel? As ever more reliance is put upon DNA to secure convictions, it will not be long before we discover cases where DNA evidence is deliberately manipulated. Ask anyone who works with DNA how easy that would be.
So it's not just convicted people: Anyone can find themselves on the DNA database. Anyone. Just look at a copper funny, and you're a second-class citizen. The DNA database fundamentally undermines the principle of equality before the law and the presumption of innocence - for everyone, not just those with something to hide.
Wednesday, 11 November 2009
I have had a bit of time to reflect on Gordon Brown’s letter snafu to Mrs Janes on the death of her son in Afghanistan. I actually sympathised with Brown on this matter at first as I thought that should get kudos for trying to do the right thing. As Dan Hannan says, he did it in private with – unbelievably for Brown – no thought to political advantage. I have to admit however that since it has panned out, and hearing the same old venomous utterances from our benighted leader during Prime Ministers Question Time my position on this has changed.
Lets be truthful, whilst honestly meant, the letter is symptomatic of Labours lack of interest in the Army - except of course when they want a photo op during the Conservative Party Conference. Labour doesn’t give a flying fornication with double back twist and summersault about the Army. According to Zanu Labour anybody in it, from the Regimental Goat up to the Chief of the General Staff is a rabid Tory who are stealing the welfare checks from Homeless Lesbian Dolphins merely by being in Uniform. The Army are the Right Wing enemy of the one party state that ZNL wishes to create and must be destroyed. I can’t think of a single ZanuLabour MP* that has ever served in the Armed Forces, not even a two week familiarisation visit to the Women’s Auxiliary Balloon Corps. Hardly a bloody surprise as the Army doesn’t specifically recruit Workshy Bolsheviks.
If Brown is too blind to write a letter – then he has my sympathy (Didn’t stop him signing the
European constitution Treaty of Lisbon though, I assume he just put a big cross on the page). But isn’t he telling endlessly and constantly telling us that he’s up to the job, getting on with the job, which started in America? Either you can’t do a job because of some reason or other, in which case you should politely step aside, or you can and you manage to write a half decent letter as we would expect from the Prime Minister of the United Kingdom. I can’t carry a tune in a bucket, which is why I don’t go for the job as chief conductor at the London Philharmonic. I haven’t used the media to get the job standing at the front of the Orchestra waving a small stick, and then got upset when the public quite rightly points out the resultant cacophony sounds like a Skeleton having a wank in a biscuit tin.
Lets not forget James Gordon Brown is a bullying dangleberry with Oak Leaves and Clusters to the people whom have the misfortune to work for him. He used the media to usurp his previous leader to get his position of power, and gets all upset when it bites him on the arse. Was the Sun in poor taste using this Soldiers death to attack Brown – of course, but when this first came out Gordon’s first instinct was to use Mandelson to slime the Sun back. And instead of maintaining a dignified silence Mandy’s at it again.
Brown destroyed our economy because it suited him to favour his client state over the good of the whole country, and he enjoyed it too because it appealed to his petty tribal spite. He’s betrayed his country by sending off men to war without anything approaching the correct equipment or manpower which is why he finds himself writing a letter to Mrs Janes in the first place. He’s betrayed Democracy with his grubby EU Constitution manoeuvring, and he’s betrayed the Office of Prime Minister by not standing aside when he clearly wasn’t up to the job, and attacking those who oppose him with Damian McBride slime. I seem to remember he’s from the party that used the death of David Cameron’s son to claim that it was Labour party funding of the NHS that kept him alive. So to whine about a newspaper using deaths for political means is a bit rich to say the least.
Brown is the Black Knight on the Prime Ministerial Bridge threatening to bleed on people. He’s a dilettante that is incapable of writing a simple letter of thanks for a life laid down for his country. It is no dishonour to try and fail, and everybody makes mistakes, the dishonour is to try and cover up failings. Sympathy for his incompetence ends the minute G Brown stays another nanosecond in a job he is morally and intellectually unable to do. The dishonour of the Sun newspaper is a different matter...
*Does Maj (retd) Eric Joyce MP (Lab, Falkirk), Late of the Pay Corps count?
Monday, 9 November 2009
Combat Barbie L Cpl Katrina Hodge
The whole of the face should be shaded, including ears to stop light bouncing off the face. In addition the stripes on the face are uniform which is noticeable in a Rural A.O. Unless the soldier is in an urban environment where linear shapes are frequent, the soldier should use a random pattern, and ideally different colours.
The “Black Kit” visible here shows no protection from friction burns, glass fragments or fire. Nor can I see any rappelling attachments. Furthermore the uniform lacks the necessary carrying pouches for all the necessary G60 Grenades and MP5K magazines necessary for CRW warfare. She could probably carry two at an absolute push. On the plus side the uniform is noticeably free of anything that could hinder the wearer carrying out a fast ingress through a mouse hole.
These are basic errors you would not expect a Cadet to make.
The pictures are courtesy of an Italian web site, one of thousands covering the subject. Trust me the Italians are VERY keen on this story of military courage.
Obviously the great clunking fist being roundly ridiculed over his Tobin Tax must hurt ZanuLabour. The final proof – as if proof were somehow needed; that the international community have recognised that Zanu Labour is bereft of life, nailed to its perch and pushing up daises. But there is a greater reason for the tears in the eyes of many a ZanuLabour supporter today, an overwhelming sadness of the heart. It was twenty years ago today that the dream died, that history betrayed them. The hopes of endless congresses on the Production of tractors and Brown Coal supply died. The power of one in fifty spying on the public died, of endless reports on the publics thought and speech reported and filed away in vast barns of surveillance. The sword and shield of the party died. The dreams of endless beige walls in government concrete office complexes died.
Feel their pain as the footage is shown on TV, as they sip from their DDR 40th Anniversary Bakelite Mugs whilst wiping their tears on their genuine Grenztruppen DILAC Hats. Why oh why didn’t the boarder guards just shoot? The survivors could have been re-educated; the economy just needed time for another plan. The State loved you, the state knew better than you; the state had a system that you pitiful fools just didn’t understand. Why oh why did this model of perfection die? To be a Labour supporter on this day of days “The catastrophe” is to truly know sorrow.
And then revel in this pain. But don’t revel too long. Because George Romero like, ZanuLabour are trying to re-animate the corpse.
Friday, 6 November 2009
I am interested in the similarities between the Murders of the American Servicemen at Fort Hood and the Murders of the British troops at Nad-e Ali. Both were carried out in supposedly secure areas, murdered by Muslims in positions of trust whilst the soldiers couldn’t get to their guns to fight back.
Political betting has a great comment…
The alleged traitor/murderer/gunman involved in the Fort Hood killing has been named as Major Malik Nadal Hasan.Sources at the BBC suggest he is either a Christian or Israeli.
Ed "Balls" has removed the rights of parents to take their children out of sex education classes after the deligtful little poppets are 15 years old. Now clearly the state says you can fuck your girlfriend when she's 16, so it makes sense that she at least knows where babies come from before her birthday. Normally, the only people who object to sex education are religious lunatics but in this case the Weird-Beards of the CoE and the Smells 'n Bells crowd are onside, leaving only the rug-butters and assorted minor protestant cults complaining about 'parents' rights'.
Religion is a mental illness, which has caused too much trouble over the years. But so is a belief in the power of the state. Ask yourself this: did you honestly learn about sex and relationships in class, or out of it?
Neither god-botherers, nor the statists are going to have any effect at all on teen pregnancies via changes to the national curriculum. The religious nutters think that by keeping children innocent and pure they will become model citizens rather than creepy and damaged little homunculi, nor the state from whom whom sex education, and even more so relationship education, will be ignored. Does anyone really believe that little Sharon and Tracey get knocked up because they can't work out how to take the pill, or didn't roll a condom onto a cucumber in sex-ed?
People learn about sex the way they've always done: from older siblings, from playground gossip and from parents. If teenage pregnancy and a council house of your very own are normal down your way, then some bearded twat with leather patches on his tweed jacket telling you how not to get pregnant will have no effect. You've got to change the incentives in society to get an effect. People have a habit, when told what to do, of telling those telling them to 'fuck off'.
By all means teach about the mechanics of pregnancy in biology class, but don't pretend that teaching, or indeed not teaching, about sex and relationships will have any impact at all on either teen pregnancy rates or the spread of cock-rotting clap. Some things are not amenable to book learning. Unless of course it's done like this:
Thursday, 5 November 2009
Pierre Lellouche, a French Minister has castigated the Conservative Party plan to repatriate powers as an “Autistic” approach that would “(Cut) itself out from the rest and disappearing from the radar map” (presumably the second largest contribution to the EU budget would remain firmly on the radar though). Meanwhile Elmar Brock MEP said that the Tory plans are a “Pipe dream”. And she also says that “The process that has led to the
European Constitution Lisbon treaty was democratic and transparent. Democracy Noun - Government by the people, exercised either directly or through elected representatives. A political or social unit governed ultimately by all its members . When our elected representatives said we would have a vote with “all its members” ie the public, and then this turned out to be a lie then this isn’t democracy Frau Brock.
Oh no, the French and the Germans don’t like us. Oh woe is Britain. The British people get so lonely when the French and the Germans aren’t telling us what to do. How will we cope with being disliked by people who have wanted to occupy us and order us around before? There is the usual stuff from the pro-EU bloggers – yes they do exist in the English speaking world. The most hysterical one I have found is here, but its up against some pretty stiff competition.
All of these bloggers seem unable to comprehend that the Tories Eurosceptic approach isn’t the result of a few chaps that happen by blind luck to be elected, but the genuine will of the vast majority of the British public. It’s just its further down the list of issues than Labour destroying our economy as things to sort out. But thanks to Monsieur Lesomethingorother David Cameron can basically say “the French don’t like it, their policy is to weaken the UK at any and all opportunity - ergo the policy must be correct. Janet Daley is right, CCHQ must have got down on their knees and thanked God for the timely intervention of Pierre.
With all of this going on, don’t forget that the idiots who are still in power got us into this mess. Gordon Brown is the one to blame, he should be objurgated by history for selling us out. Not David Cameron who isn’t the Prime Minister.
Long-Term readers of this blog know that I am deeply ambivalent about Britain's role in the EU. I loathe most of its works - the CAP especially, but flip-flop over whether withdrawal is actually the best thing for the UK, especially with the accession of more broadly sceptical eastern European countries with whom we can work to counter the Franco German Axis. On Balance I think it is, but it's a pretty fine call. It is not the EU which has ruined the country. It is the Labour party. The nutters in the Conservative party for whom the EU is the most important thing in British politics (both 'phile and 'phobe) rendered the Tories unelectable for most of a decade, and allowed the Labour party to party in power.
The British constitution can be summed up thus - Parliament is sovereign. One parliament cannot bind its successors. We can leave the EU at any time as it is a bureaucracy, not a dictatorship as some more hysterical commentators suggest. Belgian tanks are not going to roll over protesters in Trafalgar square. To withdraw would be a huge step and there are more important things to do right now. David Cameron indicated that in power he would reassert the primacy of parliament and ultimately that of the British courts, and said he'd try to renegotiate our current position, and think about a referendum in 6 years if unsuccessful. That will do for me.
Let's be clear about what has made a mess of the UK, and it ain't the EU. Gordon Brown bankrupted the UK, not the EU. Likewise it was not the EU which suggested 42-day detention without trial. It is not the EU which constructed the most extensive DNA database in the world. It is not the EU which forced the most intrusive surveillance state on earth* on the population of the UK. The EU is not responsible for armed police on the streets of London. The EU is not responsible for the extradition to the USA of businessmen who committed no crime here, whilst the seppos refuse to extradite terrorists to our courts. It is not the EU which seeks to limit the basic freedoms of British subject, and render their assets liable to extra-judicial confiscation.
It is the Labour party with did these things. Lisbon was it's final betrayal and to blame David Cameron for these things because he cannot undo what has been done is dishonest, unjust, and doing the Labour party's work. The Labour party is the Enemy of the UK, not the EU and the Conservative party's Euro nutters, Helmer and Hannan have lost sight of the central importance of getting Brown out and clearing up after his 13-year scat party. Oh... and for anyone who says "who cares about Westminster, all our laws come from the EU", you're talking crap.
As a libertarian, I believe borders which prevent the movement of goods and people are an affront to human dignity. The fact that I can do business in the EU without having to become an expert in dozens of nation's securities laws is a benefit of the EU and there millions like me who benefit from the free trade area. Just as the Federasts' claims that 60% of our trade is with the EU therefore 10 million jobs are at risk should we withdraw are fatuous, so are claims from the skeptics that to do so would be without cost. Thus our £6.7bn annual payment to the EU does buy some trade advantages. In an ideal world, I would like global free trade, but that isn't on the cards. The EU is a step in the right direction.
The British people are skeptical, do not want the Euro and resent changes to weights and measures, and would seek to block any further transfer of power to the EU but do not want to withdraw, because they can see the logic of the free movement of people and goods. Funnily enough, that is almost exactly the position of the Conservative party. If there is a split, it is between skeptics who think that the EU is in need of serious reform, but that there are more important things to do; and those who think that the EU is the most important thing in the world... like ever.
What David Cameron has done is leave a door open for a more substantive referendum in any second Conservative term, if the renegotiation is unsuccessful. The hysterical reaction from some Frenchman indicates the discomfiture that some federasts might feel, and indicate that perhaps Cameron is on the right lines. Certainly a semi detached position somewhere between Norway and Switzerland's' EEA/EFTA and full membership suits my feelings on the matter. Anyone who thinks there aren't benefits to membership of the European union is a nutter. Let's try to keep those benefits, and a chair in debating the rules, whilst minimising the costs. Again, what the Conservative party position is.
UKIP exists for a reason. To rid the Conservative party of turbulent people who think that talking about done deals is more important than winning elections. My prediction: UKIP will get fewer than a million votes in the General election, probably fewer than the BNP and certainly fewer than the 2.5 million they got in 2009 Euros.
Cameron has successfully booted Europe into the long grass, where it belongs and agreed with the British people who are broadly euroskeptic whilst doing so. He calmly asserting the supremacy of British law and a program for the return of power from Brussels, and looked Prime-Ministerial doing so. That is why the Conservatives win elections. Pragmatic, non-dogmatic and sensible policies in tune with what the British people are thinking. Funny thing, this democracy thing in action, isn't it.
*OK... Maybe one exception
Wednesday, 4 November 2009
An interesting idea from Crooked Timber about the internet, which...
...offers to non-regular TV watchers like me to retrieve the information that we are interested in and no more can lead to deficits in certain kinds of common cultural knowledge. Not the kinds of civic knowledge that Cass Sunstein etc care about – but celebrity gossip, junky pop culture etc.1 Targeted advertising – to the extent that it actually works – is obviously no solution. But spam, designed as it is to cater to the lowest and broadest of tastes actually provides me with significant information that I probably wouldn’t pick up otherwise...Like Henry, I too am only aware of the likes of Jessica Simpson, and Lindsay Lohan from their propensity to appear in CELEBRITY! NUDE! type spam e-mails, which I am far to highbrow to follow. Like this. Or this.
Let's be clear about it. It is the Labour and Liberal Democrats who betrayed their promise to hold a referendum on Lisbon. The pledge on a referendum on Lisbon CAN ONLY refer to the ratification process, which is now alas, complete. The Tories fought valiantly to prevent that treaty being ratified, and to offer a the people of Britain the referendum they were denied, and they lost. Because, despite appearances to the contrary, the Tories are still in opposition.
Let's also be clear. The reason everyone wants to know what the Tory policy is, is because the Tories are in effect the Government in waiting. Gordon Brown's opinion is not relevant. Let's see what Cameron proposes tomorrow, and judge that with an open mind. I suspect there will be a referendum on the repatriation of powers to create a mandate ahead of negotiation. But as I laid out in yesterday's post, I don't really care. There will be a referendum one day, and Britain will leave. It doesn't have to be in a first term. Dave already has to take on the civil service, the quangocracy, the judiciary, public sector unions and the police. I doubt he wants to fight the European Union too.
Oh... and one more thing. There is no Tory split on Europe. However much the press and the Labour party want one. Even Dan Hannan resolutely refuses to criticise the leadership, and any sniping is likely to come from the Europhile dinosaurs. There are no MPs or MEPs on record and it took all sky's editorialising to make him seem critical of David Cameron.
Tuesday, 3 November 2009
Does anyone hold the Labour party to its 1983 manifesto, once dubbed as the Longest suicide note in history? No. Why? Because events have superseded that commitment. If you want to know why politicians won't answer the question these days, it's because that answer will be dug up and thrown at them, out of context, years hence.
In 2007, writing in the Sun in the run-up to an expected snap election David Cameron said
Today, I will give this cast-iron guarantee: If I become PM a Conservative government will hold a referendum on any EU treaty that emerges from these negotiationsThese negotiations" eventually became the Lisbon treaty, but this pledge was not intended to cover an already ratified treaty after a 2010 election, because it was made in the expectation of being able to do something about the ratification process as Prime Minister, after a General Election in 2007. Perhaps this quote from the Evening Standard indicates that some people got it at the time.
Mr Cameron repeated his pledge to hold a referendum and campaign for a No vote if the Tories come to power in an early election that takes place before Parliament has ratified the new treatyAs we know, Gordon got the jitters and the treaty was ratified after a shameful display by the Europhile parties who stitched the process up, and then Gordon tried to hide away from the cameras while signing it. Because Gordon Brown is a cunt.
Did David Cameron do everything in his power to offer a referendum on Lisbon? Yes. Did the Liberal "Democrats" and Labour renege on their manifesto commitments to offer a referendum? Yes. Can Cameron, once PM "un-ratify" the Treaty of Lisbon? No.
So... the usual suspects for whom the EU is politics (both 'phile and 'phobe) will accuse David Cameron of Mendacity, whilst ignoring the disgusting dishonesty of Brown and Clegg (especially Clegg), and do so because in their eyes, Cameron can do nothing good. The DKs of this world are simply looking for evidence to fit their stupid hypothesis that Cameron is just as bad as Labour. In reality it is they who are being mendacious. Context is important. If you want politicians to speak like anything approaching normal english, in a way accessible to non-policy wonks, then you have to accept that when you're writing in the Sun, the context matters, and Cameron's actions since then have been in the spirit of that pledge, which shouldn't need to caveat every clause. whilst having a regard to the reality of the situation. A Sun Leader should not be written by a lawyer.
While we're on the subject, Europe is such a non issue.
80% of our laws DO NOT come from 'Europe'. We are not about to get subsumed into a European superstate, nor are we going to join the Euro any time soon. Sure, I don't want an EU president any more than you do, nor do I want a High representative, or the EU to have legal personality. The paserelle clause is an enabling act, and the EU costs us money, lots of it, but so does your average British chav, and at least the EU comes with some benefits - free movement of people is a good thing. And our own politicians are not exactly immune from creating enabling acts themselves. And in any case we can leave the EU at any point - Lisbon itself allows for this, so it's not exactly the soviet empire and Belgian tanks are about to roll over protesters in Trafalgar Square. As a result, I have no doubt that at some point in the next decade we will get our 'in or out' referendum, especially if you believe the EU fanatics who seem to think the next intake of Conservative MPs are a bunch of Better Off Out supporting Europhobic right-wingers. So in 2020 or so, I will troop down to the polling station and vote as often as I can get away with for our withdrawal. But I don't let it get to me. If you want to know why Britain is rubbish at the moment, it is because of useless Politicians who are entirely home Grown - not Europe, which concentrates instead on genocide in Africa. Let's get rid of the people who have done the damage here, Gordon Brown and his rabble, rather than blame it all on the dirty foreigners.
Because whether you're calling Dave a right-wing extremist who's losing influence in Europe, or a Blu-Labour sell-out closet europhile, NO ONE GIVES A SHIT. And you know what? The British people are right.
The EU? Meh.
Britain has the worst fiscal deficit in the OECD. This is because Gordon Brown thought the good times would go on forever and it was therefore OK to spend more than you took in tax, even though the economy had been growing for 16 years, the longest unbroken expansion in history.
This is like listening to your boss tell the assembled workforce that "there are going to be some job losses", and then marching into his office immediately asking for a pay rise because you've just bought yourself a new Porshe on credit.
What could possibly go wrong?
He actually thought that he'd abolished boom and bust. No.... really he did. It is the only explanation for his idiotic handling of the nation's finances. Iron Chancellor? Cunt more like.
And don't say "no-one said so at the time", because I did. Parts I, II, III, IV, V, VI & VII
And it just gets worse, because now the shit has hit the fan, he's ploughing on. Borrowing ever more, financing the same pointless state box tickers and resolutely refusing to reign in spending (except by slashing such front-line services). Indeed he's making a virtue of this insanity by calling it "stimulus". This is as much a lie as calling insane spending during the boom years "investment". So Brown's policy is to spend more than he receives in any year, whatever the economy does. Don't disagree, because that's what he's done. He even drags the name of a great economist, Keynes, through the mud by suggesting that he would support Brown's lunatic policies. Let's be clear: Keynes only supported expansionary fiscal policy if there was deflationary policy before. Which there wasn't. He also thought state spending shouldn't rise above 30% of GDP or so, whereas our ex-chancellor has seen it balloon to over 50%. Brown the Keynsian? Brown the cunt more like.
The only circumstances I would consider NOT pissing on Gordon Brown were I ever given the opportunity, is if he was on fire.
Monday, 2 November 2009
Professor Nutt's sensible and measured description of the harm that various recreational drugs do has caused an entirely predictable storm of indignation from the knee-jerk prohibitionists. This is just as last time he questioned Government policy. Except for one crucial factor. The press is starting to see through the prohibitionists' case, based as it is on willful prejudice and habit and is broadly supportive of the sacked scientist. Obviously there is no sense from the ususal suspects, but Just as the Tabloids were still (and still are) puff bashing long after homosexuality was made legal, they will lag society and the law on this issue too. Now that even the Daily Mail carries an article supporting Professor Nutt, it is clear which way the wind is blowing.
Drug policy is my political weathervane. Anyone who cannot see the logic of freedom on this issue where the limits of state power over the individual are so starkly demonstrated, is an idiot who shouldn't be listened to on anything else.
The scientists who advise the Government, not just on this issue, but on others too are considering their positions, and a raft of resignations may yet follow, as professor Nutt was not criticising Government policy but setting out the Harm done by various drugs. Legal drugs were included, to put the harm in perspective. This is something the British people can see, and the press coverage is backing him up. Guido's post is worth reading in full:
The sacked Professor David Nutt has turned the tables on Alan Johnson. Johnson keeps repeating angrily that the professor should stay out of politics, the professor is squarely saying that politicians should stay out of the science.Professor Nutt opposed the re-up-grading of Cannabis to class B, and opposed the 'clarification' of the law which saw Magic mushrooms in their fresh state classified as class A, as neither move reflected the harm to individuals and society from their use, and brought the law into disrepute. I would like to see the Conservatives make some party political capital out of this, but I suspect they're still afraid of the Daily Mail tendency, even though most of the public (though not, crucially, the majority of Conservative voters) are in favour of some relaxation of the law. Chris Dillow sums it up beautifully:
It seems that when public opinion is wrong - for example on immigration - politicians pander to it, but when it is right they ignore it. The function of representatives in representative democracy, it seems, is take all the idiocies of public opinion, and when these are insufficient, to then add some of their own.