20 September 2009

Daily Chat 20/09/09

Flavius Aetius defeated Attila the Hun in the Battle of Chalons in 451.  Galileo Galilei was brought to trial before the Congregation for the Doctrine of the Faith in 1633 for stating that the Earth orbits the sun.  The first Cannes Film Festival was held in 1946 and Shrub declared war on terror during a joint session of Congress in 2001.

Born today:  Upton Sinclair (1878-1968), Jelly Roll Morton (1885-1941), Jay Ward (1920-1989) and Sophia Loren (1934).

Eid al-Fitr begins at sunset, so Eid mobarak, everybody!


  1. Below is the reply I got from Hank to the e-mail I sent him about my comment on Thursday. He later asked me to post it here, to stimulate discussion. I will make my own comments later. For now, I'm just going to say that he, Olching and Monkeyfish have valid points that need to be thoughtfully considered and discussed. I hope that they will join this discussion. The rest of this is Hank:

    I felt really let down by your op-ed piece. Betrayed in fact. And I don't buy into all the "let's be nice to Bella and Jessica" shit, either. They are complicit, they're not minimum wage baristas at Starbucks, they get paid good money despite the fact that they're none too bright. All part of the same nepotistic network, the same shitty hypocrisy and they are fair game as far as I'm concerned.

    And I am so sick and tired of reading Kiz's "it's just a fucking newspaper" schtick. Like it's all just a bit of fun, Cif is just a way of passing the time at work but not to be taken seriously.

    Bollocks. It's politics. It hurts people in very real ways. It matters. And Cif is a platform for discussing that, getting angry about it, bringing injustices to light. It's not just a fucking newspaper.

    Sadly, the Untrusted has become Cif Redux. Wanky solipsism, gossip, backslapping and ganging up on those we don't like.

    I don't blame you for any of that. Blogs are organic, they take on a life of their own. You shouldn't ever feel guilty about it or take personally the shit which comes your way from BTH or others.

    I've got a helluva lot of time for you, Montana. I think you're a genuinely good person. You made a mistake this week. I won't hold it against you. But I won't be back at the Untrusted as things stand

  2. they're none too bright./It hurts people in very real ways

    they are fair game /ganging up on those we don't like.

    bringing injustices to light/ Wanky solipsism

    the one voice is the printed text,,we all see the same words

    the different ears is what those words mean to us
    personally individually,,

    if i could be more prose and less snippet/cutnpaste i would,,but i can not,,
    rather i am not,,

  3. They are complicit, they're not minimum wage baristas at Starbucks, they get paid good money despite the fact that they're none too bright. All part of the same nepotistic network, the same shitty hypocrisy and they are fair game as far as I'm concerned.

    I'm complicit too, I worked as a teacher in the state education system. I was made aware of the situation by someone who didn't think I was 'fair game' but thought I was a proletarian who had to work.

    Everyone who works is complicit, the extent of that compliance depends on consciousness. It does mean that eventually I was no longer able to go along with the mind numbing nature of the national curriculum and got out.

    If the person who won me to the ideas of Marxism has just shouted 'middle class wanker' at me I would not be typing this today.

    So yes challenge Bella and Jessica on their position, but do it in a way that allows the development their consciousness, not in a way that increases their alienation.

    Unlikely people can be won over to our side, remember red skins?

    There are people on the Graun staff who do seem a lost cause though! Matt Seaton comes to mind!

  4. cont'd from above

    But I could be wrong even there!

  5. I agree with Hank to a great extent, and also with some of what you say, anne. But let's be brutally honest about this. Bella and Jessica came on Untrusted not to apologize or to tell us that things would be different - why should they?. They came on to try and justify their behaviour and to feel better about themselves when we all said 'hey, that's all right, don't worry about it'. Which some people did. And it sounded like 'hey it's great that Guardian people deign to visit such a humble little blog as ours - they really didn't have to'. Big deal. I personally had no real interest in reading or responding, but that's a judgment call for everyone to make for themselves. That said, there's no real mileage in getting intensely personal or abusive, it just looks bad. Nothing we said would have made any difference anyway. (sorry, anne)

  6. No need to apologise Sherfig, mostly its true that nothing you say makes any difference and certainly self congratulatary comments should be challenged because otherwise you are telling other people to comply (not on).

    But the challenge should be polite precisely because, on the net especially, others will read your arguments and I want my political views to come across, not as rudeness, but as the reasonable arguments I believe they are.

    Not to say that there are not times where the expression of anger at the actions of Nulabour for example. This anger is widespread and those who share it are looking for answers.

    In circumstance where anybody may be listening you need to be circumspect.

  7. Yes, anne. Perhaps a workable formula would be anger at the government and contempt for the Guardian. Both expressed politely, of course :o)

  8. Morning everyone.

    I’ve decided to stop posting here and on Cif.

    This is because someone who cares about me (and who I care about too) has pointed out, on more than one occasion, that I’m becoming unhealthily obsessed with various online activities and it’s affecting my interactions with people in the real world.

    I’ve been aware of that before, but I thought I could “keep it under control”, like the junkie who kids themself they can choose how much they use, I suppose.

    But unfortunately I can’t control it properly, and so I’m going to have to give it up completely. That will be hard, but it’s for the best.

    Thanks to all of you for some great discussion and some great rows over the past six months. I’ll always think of my former drug buddies with affection.

    Anyone who wants to keep in touch is welcome to e-mail me at


    just as long as you don’t try to get me using again.

    One final link to The Clash

    Should I Stay or Should I Go

    It’s got to be the latter, I’m afraid.

  9. "But unfortunately I can’t control it properly, and so I’m going to have to give it up completely. That will be hard, but it’s for the best."

    I can certainly understand that Andy.

    Take Care.

    I don't know, Hank. Maybe if you wrote something about what you thought you'd signed up to. I once suggested, to a clamorous silence, that this place could do with some other threads (or a linked site). If you call every post 'daily chat', then people are going to do just that. They'll talk about their lives (yes, some of them middle class lives), make jokes and post links to things they like. At the moment Hank, the only message I'm getting from you is that most other people are bastards. I'd love to read something by you which gave the lie to that.

    Anyway, sorry to interrupt; as you were.

  10. andy, there was a cartoon somewhere of an anxious guy huddled over the computer being told by his partner to come to bed and him responding 'But there's something wrong on the internet!'

    Oddly, one of the more interesting Scottish bloggers has also just announced his departure from cybergab as he felt real life was actually more interesting. He didn't expand, but if you think Cif gets toxic try jumping onto Scottish threads - imagine flocks of dim bigots with low-grade qualifications employed in frustrating jobs and you'll get the picture.

    Talking of low-grade jobs, I was doing Extra work in River City yesterday - like the Corrie set, 'Shieldinch' is incredibly life-like, but if you knock a tenement wall you find it's just plasterboard: and if you look in the pub, like an old Armando Ianucci (our greatest living Scot) sketch, it's all dust and cables.

    The cyber world has always been like that. Our eldest struck up a great online friendship with a Carolina girl, but when they met they just didn't get on.

    Some of the people who snap at each other online may get on really well if they meet, while others who merrily chat with each other won't - it's a key difference between real and cyber life. Scherfig and Bru would get on really well in the boozer I reckon!

    Just a few points to add:

    - in the seemingly interminable Jess&Bella/Us debate I'm on the side of politesse; they seem affable enough guys and if they come onto Montana's turf then they should be treated with respect

    - I disagree with several of Hank's points above - for example, I think Jess/bella (the Jessbella, like the ChesterBelloc) are actually pretty clever people - but he is surely right about the Guardian angle. ATL posters get paid shite but Jess/Bella (like the Mods) are, I assume, well paid.

    - and the reason they are likely well paid is because Cif is important to the Guardian for growth; yes it is a livelier community than on other papers, but that is not because of the bigness of the Guardian heart, oh dearie me no; it is a strategic marketing position.

    - energy expended online = less energy expended in real life. I do think that some of the people here and on Cif should be looking at ways of writing for money, rather than filling space with free content.

    Off to get the shopping, bye and thanks to anon for the fish!

    Will drop you a line andy.

    You know what, I think I'll join you. Just a few

  11. andysays
    Take care of yourself and enjoy real life to the full!

  12. Oh and one last thing - many thanks to martillo for the great links. When people post links I generally pass on, but yours are classy - I especially treasure the Macbeth scene with Sid James as Banquo, fab.

  13. Edwin Moore

    You have no right to be so sane on a Sunday morning and that would be a café (preferably on the chi-chi Sablon) rather than a boozer, although Kitty O'Shea's in Brussels was always a good watering hole when I worked in the Commission.

    Andy - you will be sorely missed as one of the more moderate posters here (we may be a dying breed). We don't see too much of Kiz here any more either.

    Well I've had some episodes on CiF (including when Speedkermit more or less said he would like to shoot me) but I think being called a gay/transvestite on here is probably in a class of its own. OK I did get an apology so I won't rub it in.

    As for Hank - well he needs to cultivate more tolerance of other people and their differing lifestyles. Why does he assume his way is the only way to be? It's a bit arrogant to say the least.

    And I'm with Kiz - you can't take all of this too seriously.

    Your comments about marketing and CiF are interesting. They make sense when you think of how many posters got the bum's rush earlier this year. They weren't media friendly I guess.

    Anyway as I've said now a number of times, I don't post either here or on PB that often, maybe once a day or not even that sometimes and it does seem to me that there is a lot of aggression sloshing around at the moment. I can imagine what a Scottish thread might be like.

    I still think we need a women's only thread as an alternative.

    Have a good Sunday - you too Martillo and Andy.

  14. Hank needs some vinegar to go with those chips.

    Had enough of it all now. Sorry. I am fed up of being told that I am not worthy because I am not working-class enough to post on here. I'm sorry, but nobody told me I had to pass an entrance exam in northern grit before I joined. Ah well.

    I will just get on with the Real World for a bit too, I think.

    beautifulburnoutbirdchrome@gmail.com for anyone who's interested.

    And by the way - I thought I recognised the writing style of a couple of the "anons" who were so shitty the night before last. Just goes to show what cowards some people can be. I will make allowances for that fact that they might have been just in from the pub, but they are still cowards.

  15. Thanks Edwin, glad you enjoyed them.

    What does a gay transvestite want with a women only thread?;0)

    You have a good Sunday too, Bru. I'm off to spend mine on the beach with a dog.

  16. Well this has blown up. Andy - sorry to see you go; always enjoyed your posts and they way you welcomed new people. Understand the detox feeling: I had to take an enforced break due to work a coupla weeks back and it felt good. Same goes for the others leaving. I hope they'll reconsider (if it's not bad for their health!).
    Like I said yesterday, that this has happened because people have been merely asked not to be arseholes is ridiculous. Whoever talked about chips had it just right: some people have behaved like stereotypical last-century garret socialists revolutionaries, more interested in bile and vitriol than reasoned argument, convinced that anyone who wasn't them or talked about something they didn't like was some sort of class-traitor. If they truly wanted to achieve change they'd try and win people over reasonably: clearly they don't and want they're mostly interested in is spewing venom. It's pretty depressing that they seem to be winning.
    The worst thung about this is the effect it'll have on MontanaW. Some people have routinely abused what she's done for us and then had the gall to make her feel guilty as if she's failed them in some way. She should feel sorry for nothing, because there's no pleasing some people. The fault is theirs for failing to observe the simplest of rules, common decency.
    Don't let this ruin your weekend. Having been on the end of that kind of crap myself, I know it can feel rotten but it IS just the internet, and they ARE just tossers.

  17. beautifulburnout,
    Yes it was obvious wasn't it?
    I don't understand what it is that hank wants.
    One assumes that whatever it is, he gets to be head honcho with his little friend providing the 'Yes masters'
    Am unable to think of a good reason why we should provide it though.

  18. "Bollocks. It's politics. It hurts people in very real ways. It matters. And Cif is a platform for discussing that, getting angry about it, bringing injustices to light. It's not just a fucking newspaper."

    I agree with this entirely, it isnt just a newspaper. Its mainly shite - it has the balance between identity twaddle and economic and constitutional reform completely inverted. Identity should be a sideshow, a way of keeping tabs on bigots and highlighting whats necessary. Joey Harker failing to find a mothers day card with a black face is not news.

    Identity politics seems to mainly thrive in the US and UK, the two global champions of turbo capitalism. Just a coincidence, though, of course.

    But anyway, CiF should be important, but i dont know if it is. I dont think editorial line ever really reflects the comments, comments dont seem to impact much. So why bother.

    Then there's British politics in general, 3 neolib parties and a constitutional setup that would raise eyebrows in a banana republic (we pretty much qualify for one of those now anyway). Again, why bother, nothing is progressing. Camerons remark about a fag paper between lib dems and tories was funny, theres less than a fag paper between all 3 of them.

    But this place isnt important, it has no responsibility, it has a very small readership compared to the graun, miniscule in fact. CiF seems increasingly pointless as a means of political engagement so i really cant get worked up about this place. I just like lots of the people here, including Hank and Monkey.

    Andy - sorry to hear that mate, hope to see you back again sometime. Take care.

  19. First, I'm sorry to see you go Andy but understand your reasons - so good luck in the real world!

    I wasn't around when the UT was set up so I've only got the competing versions of what it was set up for to go on. Daily chat? or serious discussions? There are those like Hank and Olching who want serious discussion and others who would like to leaven that with more light hearted fare. Personally I think there's room for both, although its true we've erred on the side of light hearted lately, (when not battling trolls).

    I fall between Hank and Anne on the complicity thing - I agree with Hank that visits from Graun staff should be viewed with some scepticism but with Anne and Edwin on the best way to handle things - 'politesse' and strong arguments rather than beating people into submission.

    Anne's right - we are all stuck in the bloody machine one way or another, which makes us all complicit, particularly if all we do is sound off in cyber space (thats not a dig at anyone, as I don't know what activities anyone else is involved in).

    I'd like to talk more about the difficulties that 'where you work' throws up because they affect me acutely, but as I work (part time) for a government department it'd have to be in the other place.

    Finally, I was really glad to find the UT and despite the periodic spasms of ire and trollery, I think people here are interesting and intelligent, have taught me things and are good to be around, even the ones I don't necessarily agree with, perhaps especially those.

  20. "I agree with Hank that visits from Graun staff should be viewed with some scepticism but with Anne and Edwin on the best way to handle things - 'politesse' and strong arguments rather than beating people into submission."
    Quite right. I've modified my opinions on quite a few things since I joined CiF and then UT, and it was usually because someone made a careful and thoughtful point, not when they called me a shit.

  21. Martillo - you have a lovely dog. Mine used to love the beach - running up and down on the shingle. Nothing like taking a dog for a walk near water except in the park in Autumn when they skid through the leaves....

  22. BB

    Sorry to see you exit as well. I take your point which is why the other day I made that lighthearted comment about having to eat a full English breakfast with black pudding and fried bread before posting on here.

    The point is if people are not prepared to be tolerant of everyone else's background - whatever that might be - then there really is no point. We can get all the vitriolic comments we can handle on CiF, which sometimes can get pretty awful.

    I'll be back to intermittent posting after this. I certainly don't want to get involved in another Saturday night fracas until the early hours on the internet.

  23. Sorry to see you go andy. I expect you will get quite a few emails trying to lure you back:
    "quick! Bindel's done a biscuit thread!"
    Addicts detest any show of willpower in one of their own. ;-)

  24. BB

    This is a really sad day - gonna miss you girl. will email you

  25. I'm still thinking through what people are writing here.

    One thing that does grab me at the outset is that it is small reward for all that effort and honesty from Montana then to be faced with desertions in the ranks. The polite and decent thing to do may be to just fade away if that is what your conscience or circumstances calls you to do.

    I won't be deserting. I think that in the not too distant future the politics and the reality will become all the more vile. We shall need places like this all the more. We let it go at our own peril.

    I will write to both Andy and BB to repeat what I say here - You have both made powerful contributions to this place and to CiF I have enjoyed and been encouraged by your efforts. You are both people I should have been pleased to have had as neighbours in a different life.

    Should the worse ever come to pass in your lives I wouldn't object if you parked your caravans in my field.

    I'm not totally sure what direction I want to argue that this fine place called UT should take (or organically grow) in future but I think the word collective will be in their somewhere. So too will be the word fun.

    By the way Hank the way some things organically grow depends a lot on what kind of shit they are fed. God only knows why some crap is more productive than others. I am a very big fan of yours but I'm not sure this is you finest moment my friend.

    Of course one accepts that places like this sometimes seem to have a mind and soul all of its own. Thus what I might want and what I might get may well be different.

    Lunch seems small reward for your contribution Montana - so I'll start saving to take you to dinner (with or without cider at your discretion) instead.

    I've already decided on the book I'm going to send you for Christmas.

    Best W

    x Deano.

  26. A little calmer downer:


  27. Stoaty - AEU!

    I had you down as a skilled man although you may have the ?? (fuck I've forgotten the colour of the semi skilled card)

    Interesting - I'm sure we'll have things to talk about apart from our both having left school at 15.

    Catch you later brother - dog walking calls.

  28. Jay - a little calmer downer? We need half a box of valium over here - each.

    Sorry the memories of your Parisian holiday have got squashed by this episode.

  29. Jay
    Fucking class choice friend - I just adore the guy.

    You know that he is receptive to a collective influence - he often interacts with his fans as he composes !

  30. Bru - we should not feed Hof Roche's profits from our misery.

    I'm going to settle for half a case of red. Fuck em.

  31. My final and completely unoriginal thought for this unhappy day - there is a difference between talking to the enemy and sleeping with them.

  32. Deano

    I'm with you on the red and big pharma and glad you're not disappearing into the hinterland too - where would I go for my rowing lessons?. Anyway, lovely day again down here - think I'll go and sort the yard out.

  33. deano,
    Yes I have oik written right through me like a stick of rock. Never felt the urge to attack the middle class though as I've pushed both my kids into it. If you have a disposable hotmail we can talk about it.

  34. Deano - I'm off later to a café to meet up with some friends. Weather seems to be holding here. Was a beautiful day yesterday.

    Enjoy your red - can't drink it myself - brings on terrible headaches. I can only have white or rosé.


  35. It is just a newspaper. Sorry you can't handle the reality of that. A newspaper with an interesting discussion forum. But it makes no tangible difference to anyone's life, apart from honing a few people's debating skills. It's a fucking shame that the class warriors think that civility is bourgeois. Not sure where you were brought up... but it really fucking isn't where I come from. As for Bru's light hearted posts on shoes, jewellry etc.. They're a fucking scream. I can't for the life of me think why she has to impress anybody? Or why the fact that she doesn't impress someone means they ca be so downright rude...
    As for Hank an MF feeling persecuted by the Graun because they keep getting banned. Tough shit. When you could have stayed with your own names with the proviso that you did a coule of weeks pre-mod, you were too fucking good for that. So you came back time and time again continuing with your basically downright obnoxious schtick... coz yr so fucking right on... such cool class warriors. So they fucking ban you again and again. Why shouldn't they? What the fuck does the guardian owe you?
    I really can't be doing with this shit anyways I've got better things to do than hang out with the obnoxious. I'll be on cif...

  36. Thanks Kiz - I'll see you on CiF.

  37. So whats the tally

    Andy leaving,
    BB and Kiz driven out
    Bru totally pissed off.

    Great days work folks. :-((

  38. Ok, lets try this again, singing in first this time!

    Hi all

    What Deano and annetan said (sorry I seem to be doing that a lot lately but you lot are just so eloquent ;-))


    You asked last night: Inglorious Basterds, not terrible, but not one of his best, too long, and a bit weird.



    (I've ordered some for a friend for her 30th, if you're interested I will let you know when I get it and what it's like)


    I'm not going anywhere, not unless I drift cos of work or whatever. I agree to an extent with what Deano said, but on the other hand, rightly or wrongly, it's the simple things in real life I live for: A film and a cuppa last night with my bro and a mate (even if the conversation over the cuppa was a bit too much about mountain biking and skiing for my liking) and right now my bro is in the parentals' kitchen cooking the works for brekkie, bliss!

    I do think sometimes some of you need to chill out (just a smidge, and no offence meant)

  39. stoat

    f*&k you then, you species confused little mustelid ;-)

  40. Two of my problems in life are that I'm a people-pleaser and I tend to see both sides of arguments and often manage to agree, to some extent, with both sides.

    I understand why Hank and Monkeyfish felt betrayed by what I wrote at the top of Thursday morning's thread. I half anticipated it and I've been kicking myself for not having addressed it in my comment. I think they're perfectly justified in feeling that I let them down. They and their feelings are far more important to me than Bella and Jessica. Scherfig's comment at 7:21 am is right, I think.

    Politeness is all well and good, but there does come a point at which politeness becomes a lack of principle. I'm sorry, but I can't agree that Hank or Monkeyfish should have swallowed their pride and sat in pre-mod for the sake of keeping their Cif IDs. They never should have been banned. I'm not criticising Jay for having agreed to pre-mod to keep his, I'm just saying that I don't think Hank and Monkeyfish were wrong to refuse to play the Guardian's game.

    I don't think any of us believes that our BTL comments will ever have any meaningful effect on the way the Guardian is run, but that doesn't mean that we can't effect the way other Cif readers think and it doesn't absolve us from trying.

    Some of you are getting angry with Hank for being angry with the way things are and for refusing to be polite about it. Sorry, but the world needs more Hanks, if you ask me. We're all too fucking complacent. We are being royally fucked over and we're allowing them to do it, so long as we have our creature comforts. We ought to be out in the streets raging against this. Whatever democracies we may have once had in Britain and the US -- they're gone now. The illusion is still there, but the Cameron comment about the fag paper is all too true. Obama, Bush or Clinton. Thatcher, Blair, Brown or Cameron. What difference does it make to the people at the bottom of the pile?

    Words matter. Words can change minds. Words can spur people to action. That is what we have right now, until enough minds can be changed to make action a possibility.

    It doesn't mean that we all have to be deadly serious and angry all the time. It doesn't mean that we can't enjoy ourselves and share stories about holidays and music that we like. Have you all forgotten just how funny Hank and Monkeyfish can be?

    The criticism that this place has become a place for superficial back-slapping is a fair one, I believe. It's a bit telling that, at the first sign of criticism, some people are choosing to flounce off rather than staying and engaging. I think that's called a nerve being hit.

  41. Don't worry Montana, hank and his friend will return. Serial flouncers always do.

  42. Montana

    Would be great to have the wit, humour and intelligent argument without the personal attacks.

    Having said that I really don't see the point of getting overly wound up about it and its a real shame that people have decided to leave. We need all our energy to fight back against the bastards who have crushed liberty, justice and ordinary bog standard decency, not waste it bickering amongst ourselves.

    Whilst discussions on forums like these can be brilliant, really incisive, enlightening and help to develop ideas at their best, in the end it's what you do out in the real world that counts.

  43. Sheff it is important of course to engage with people elsewhere if possible. But Fencewalker has said that thoughtful posts have made him reconsider his position so thoughtful polite posts putting a different position in reply to a poster can change people's minds and is worth doing.

    Its not always the original poster whose mind is changed either could be another poster or a lurker.

    Makes it worth doing in itself imho.

  44. It is just a newspaper

    No it isn't. The Guardian never was, and CiF never was. There was always a mindset and a whole damn slice of British society and power that was driven by that mindset. For obvious reasons I have problems with that mindset, and also, obviously enough, my problems are different to Hank's. Probably 180 degrees out. But there is something that CiF had been that I think we both appreciated - an open forum, with every viewpoint under the sun represented - and that has gone; and the Mods and Editors are complicit in that.

    Trivial? I dont' think so. The wholesale rejection fo free speech by the Left isn't just happening at CiF - from the Motoons Cowardice, through to these two christians up on trial this week for evangelising over breakfast, by way of the myriad hate crimes this foul government has brought in, socialist thinking has decided it can only win an argument by banning the other side. Oh I know you'll tell me the Guardian ain't socialist and neither are labour - well, I disagree. And they disagree too...

    Free speech matters, and a censor is always complicit, no matter how small a cog they might be, no matter that they're "just following orders".

  45. Anne

    Yes - I agree with you and fencewalker - my views have developed too and i have a better understanding of lots of things I didn't know much about before I started getting involved in online forums.

    But - I stick by what I said about what we do in the real world. we have to act on our beliefs - not undermine each other by bitching online or anywhere else.

    I don't think its just what you call the 'left' that has rejected free speech - seems to be pretty much across the entire political spectrum, and its not socialist thinking as I understand socialism. Point me at a socialist in this establishment and I'll eat the proverbial.

  46. Frank -
    "socialist thinking has decided it can only win an argument by banning the other side. Oh I know you'll tell me the Guardian ain't socialist and neither are labour - well, I disagree. And they disagree too..."

    Thats the trouble with the word 'socialism' Frank! Doesn't always do what it says on the tin.

    There is a problem with definitions if we can't agree on them its difficult to discuss.

    I can only say I call myself a socialist and I don't agree with censorship or with much that Nulabour has done.

    But then you almost certainly don't agree with much of what I do believe in anyway! :D

  47. Yeah, Frank, I agree with some of what you say but you are way off base by attributing this to the left. The Guardian, Labour, Brown, Blair, Clinton, Obama, etc. They're corporatist scum. I hate them even more than I hate Thatcher, Reagan and all the other neocons. The Graun, et al. have taken on this extremely thin veneer of leftist social ideals while saturating themselves in rightist economic policies. They do not represent me and my values in any way, shape or form.

    Just because they claim they're on the left, doesn't make it so.

  48. 'They're corporatist scum. I hate them even more than I hate Thatcher, Reagan and all the other neocons.'

    Montana - truer words have never been said! I think it is a shame you are off BB and Andysays (although Andy I can understand the worry about being addicted to the net!!)

    I think Deano has made a brilliant post further up the page. Deano I doff my ladies hat to you sir! Things are going to get much, much worse soon and having somewhere you can go where you can get intelligent discussion on these issues is important.

    As for me - well I am fairly new - I don't know lots of you really well but I am starting to feel like I know some of you more and more. But for me - I am surrounded - and I mean surrounded - by people who vote Labour and or Tory over and over again. People who never question anything, people who do not seem to care that the world is going to shit in a handbasket and I think being able to debate with people who do care (even if they think the causes are different or the solutions are different) matters! I would probably have sunk into a deep depression by now too - being stuck at home ill and in pain a lot - if it were not for places like this and Cif.

    Hey you guys are like my Prozac.

    Anyway I am going to go and sit in my garden as there is actually a bit of sun here (MsChin are you from sheffield too? someone mentioned you and Sheffpixie being from the same place so I just wondered).

    Andy I hope you feel like you can 'use responsibly' at some point again but if not all the best.

  49. ""socialist thinking has decided it can only win an argument by banning the other side."

    The most authoritarian brand of leftism is the identity bandits, by a long, long way. The economic discourse of the left rarely features any accusations of thought crimes etc at all, there are no attempts to silence or things declared unspeakable. No laws have been introduced making it a hate crime to advocate low taxes or sing the praises of neoliberal narcissism. Seems a bit of a broad brush accusation Frank. Good to see you posting though.

  50. No laws have been introduced making it a hate crime to advocate low taxes or sing the praises of neoliberal narcissism.

    It's been suggested that climate change skepticism be made a hate crime though innit? But yes, the identity/multicult wallahs are by far the most vicious

  51. Thanks for posting this on here, Montana. Sorry but not surprised that it has caused such offence to some.

    I did actually want to generate a debate about Cif itself and about this site's relationship with Cif. I was struck by the single post from a former blog editor on here the other day about the dangers inherent in sites like this becoming parasitical on the blogs which effectively spawned them. Made an awful lot of sense to me but it was ignored, as much of the serious issues are.

    I'm not interested in wrecking this site. BB and kizbot are part of the furniture here and if they leave due to me, I'd feel guilty about that. I'll walk away first, stop bothering you with my thoughts, and let you carry on in your own sweet way.

    Oh, btw, BB, not guilty on the charge of posting anonymously on here. Whatever you might think of me, at least accept that I've got the guts to stand by my opinions.

  52. Just to clarify Kiz's point about being allowed back on Cif on the same terms as Jay...

    I'm pretty sure I explained over at the PB at the time that, despite what Georgina may have said, the mods took a different view. I emailed them to ask if I would be allowed back with a spell in detention. The answer was that I could but they wouldn't give any indication about the length of that pre-mod.

    The mistake I made, compared to Jay, was that I didn't hang around for them to set out their terms, and posted under new ids on the infamous "WDYWTTA" thread. My posts on there obviously got under the mods' skins, and it was fairly obvious that I would be persona non grata indefinitely. So, the route open to Jay wasn't there for me.

    I had already burned the bridges before the peace terms were offered.

    The fundamental point remains though, there is a hypocrisy at the heart of CiF. Basically, you're allowed to post anything you like as long as you don't question the disconnect between what the Guardian's star writers say and what they do.

    @andy - one day at a time, mate!

  53. Hank

    "Oh, btw, BB, not guilty on the charge of posting anonymously on here. Whatever you might think of me, at least accept that I've got the guts to stand by my opinions."

    Good. That makes me feel a hell of a lot more comfortable at least.

    For the "whatever you might think of me" bit, if you want to talk about that, please email me if you want - addy up there ^^^ - and I will be happy to talk things through in private.

  54. I think if there has been any descent into backslapping it's partly down due to fear of bile. Certainly has been a bit in my case: I've kept out of some conversations because it's not worth the blood-pressure. Sure, argue your case vehemently - but treat the other guy like a human, whatever (-ish) his views. That's one of the things that worries me about some people on Cif - the implication that anything is jusstified to keeep the Tories out. Frankly, that's an undemocratic and dangerous attitude, especially when the other side are doing the same - look at some of the ludicrous right wingers on the Mail or Telegraph sites, or on Fox News. Unless you're actually planning to overthrow society, that's a fucking misguided route to take. When I see those twats protesting against Obama, it's not the racism that's my prime concern (though I think Carter was right about that for at least some of them) but the unwillingness to accept that in a representative democracy you take turns.

  55. Whatever you might think of me, at least accept that I've got the guts to stand by my opinions.

    20 September, 2009 17:53

    Hank - I've the guts (sans liver) to be cremated by my and for my opinions.

    this is my ninth attempt to catch a cloud - see what happens next

  56. Fencewalker - nothing wrong with a bit of bile, better out than in after all. We need to start getting angry about things. And while I accept that sometimes I overstep the line, playing the man and not the ball, I find it difficult to separate the person from their politics.

    "...in a representative democracy you take turns."

    Swapping one neo-liberal for another isn't really representative democracy. Even if I disregard the spirited defence of MF and me, I couldn't agree more with Montana's post above about the hijacking of our democracies by the corporate elite.

    Have you ever seen The Corporation? well worth two hours of anyone's time.


  57. Hank if you were one of my sons - I would have kicked the shit out of you.

    I would have done so without hesitation because you would have been expected to know that if you want to piss in public - rule: enquire of your senses, in which direction the wind do blow.

    You would have ben kicked because more was expected of you.

    But that's just an older man's observation

    (cloud carry me)

  58. I watched the link and I expect I'd agree with it wholeheartedly. I've been - ineffectually - angry a lot of times in the last year, and the prospect of the election fills me with misery. But I don't think change just comes with rage. When you go tooth and nail for someone, they - and more importantly the other people watching, only see the rage, not the passion. Being dismissed as a headbanger isn't going to win any kind of change.

  59. Hank

    You as a young soldier sharp enuf ( faster on the draw than this man) ought to know that what went on this week-end was:

    The old 3 card trick- - divide and rule and then fuck em.

  60. This is just too hard to catch a signal tonight.

    I remain a fan - but only just.

  61. @ PCC

    Chin is indeed from Sheff - Easy on the proazac take the walks and the talks with comrades like Sheff/Chin and of course Montana et al...!

    the debate here is far frorm done

  62. "Hank if you were one of my sons - I would have kicked the shit out of you."

    And if you were my dad, deano, I would have quite happily laid there and hoped to die (-;

    Wasn't trying to be pointlessly provocative, I actually thought I made some valid points.

  63. Hank:
    Think we might have got some wires crossed earlier.
    When I said Hanks "needed lessons in being nice to people", I was referring to Tom Hanks, not HankS.
    Sorry for any confusion.

  64. I know you weren't - but you were careless in the use of language for no advantage.

    You did make some valid points - you made an agenda but which less decent folk will consider 'cos you didn't think it through.

    You do not ever write a sentence which includes the word 'betrayed' - lest you be sure our kid.,

  65. Just trawled through some of the 400 post thread, so felt the need to say this:

    For all the anonymous lurkers spitting bile about how this site used to be better, or it doesn't discuss weighty issues, here's a thought:

    Its a blog, not a fucking tv show. If you want big issues or better posts, then that little square box where you've previously been dumping your mental turds is for you. Feel free to post the fruits of your intellect, epics of political discussion or inspiring stories from your life.
    If you don't have the inclination or the capability then youtube is crying out for more posters who want to tell the world that "this is the shittest thing on the internet, you suck cock and your mum is gay", because that's all you're saying, just with longer words.

  66. Hank

    Of course you're right about democracy being hijacked and the power of the corporations but this isn't news is it? and you do make good points but fencewalker's right too - people read the bile and ad homs, get pissed off and stop listening - so where does that get us? precisely nowhere but does expend a lot of time and energy that could be better spent resisting.

    Christ knows what's going to happen over the next few years. It doesn't make an iota of real difference which of the useless tosspots that pass for politicians we get at the next election - essentially it'll be the same old same old - just look at how quickly the bankers, financiers etc are resuming their places at the corporate table willingly backed up by the politicos with our money, whilst ordinary people pay the price and face growing poverty and ever lengthening dole queues.

    We need a bit more solidarity amongst ourselves if we're ever to have the remotest hope of achieving anything - which isn't looking very likely the way things are going right now.

    PS: Have to confess to the odd ad hom myself - I do agree sometimes it's irresistable - although rarely a good idea

  67. @sealion - fair do's mate. I'm feeling a bit bruised and battered at the moment so was probably a bit hypersensitive to insults that are aimed elsewhere. Is Tom Hanks really not as nice as his on-screen persona would suggest though? Shocked!

    @sheffpixie - "people read the bile and the ad homs and stop listening..." I think the bile and ad hom stuff is getting a bit overplayed now, tbh. Sure, my trigger finger isn't underused but I'm not the sociopath that some people on here see me as.

    Loved that picture of you on the picket line btw. Much respect.

  68. 'serial flouncers' - love it, and yes it applies to me, though i doubt if I'll flounce back to Cif again.

    It would be a shame if the Untrusted were to fade out in apathy induced by squabbling but I don't think it'll happen. It's been a heated day, but maybe a useful day also. It's clear that different posters have different expectations of what the place should be and that leads to aggro. We just need to get along a bit better.

    Incidentally, there is an item in today's Sunday Times suggesting there will be a large number of editorial jobs going at the Guardian shortly. The free content supplied by Cif posters is important to the online Guardian, and is becoming more important, so there is really no need for any Cif poster to feel an obligation to be grateful to the Guardian.

    We should feel an obligation to each other, however, and particularly to Montana - thanks Montana.

  69. We need a bit more solidarity amongst ourselves if we're ever to have the remotest hope of achieving anything - which isn't looking very likely the way things are going right now.
    it looks pretty good to me through the prism of the untrusted,,these last 550 ot so posts have
    covered a lot of ground,,vigourous emotions have
    conflicted and disscussion and greater understanding is evolving,,

    if everyone was like me (mild and supportive) the thread gets ten posts and dies

    if everyone was fiery contrarian the blog gets ten threads and explodes

    between our communiality the last 550 post cover
    meaningful and useful exchange,,exchange is growth,,sharing is the meaning of life

    well done us

  70. 3p4

    Well done us - of course I agree my friend,,

  71. talking of giving sons a good kicking i have spent the last 7 months not doing that to my distressed and heavydrinking skunkfogged son..

    the breakup of his first domestic relationship tilted him over an edge,,

    all this time he has been unemployed and living with me,, i pay the rent (60% of my disability),, i wont detail all the ups downs deciets and deflections and distortions
    that the last 7mths dealt with but by being as minimal as possible on the goodkicking front
    (we all lose it sometimes) and by being as heavy on the (warrented) praise and encouragement he has now stopped abusing booze,,and staying behind closed doors for as long as the bag lasted,, and has a good job (that was the biggest challenge,, to get him to go out and get a job in an extraodinarily tough job market,,constant rejections for work when you are trying to get of the treadmill is the last thing you need)
    and is paying off his debts ,,

    honey,,vinegar,,granma told me that one,,grannies are the root of human wisdom,,

  72. i love you Aaron

    thats for when he comes home and i ask him to read the one above :)

  73. 3p4

    Son want's a holiday in Yorkshire next summer I can help but it it will be as I live - basic.

  74. I cannot tell you all how happy I am to have come home from treating the sprog & myself to breakfast in a local diner & doing the grocery shopping to see what has gone on here in the meantime. People are civilly discussing things. Isn't that wonderful?

    I think we really did need this and I hope that others will come back and reconsider.

    I would like to return way upthread to martillo's comment:

    I once suggested, to a clamorous silence, that this place could do with some other threads (or a linked site). If you call every post 'daily chat', then people are going to do just that. They'll talk about their lives (yes, some of them middle class lives), make jokes and post links to things they like.

    I've got to say that the daily chat format isn't working well for me. It isn't the putting-it-together aspect, it's the participating-in-the-threads aspect. By the time I get home (often there are errands before we can come home), feed the sprog, and do other things that have to be done, most/all of you are in bed and it's time to put up the next day's thread. This means that I either use the first comment of the day for responses to things that were said or I don't respond at all. The former has been feeling 'wrong' to me somehow, but the latter has made me feel like a spectator.

    I'm going to tinker a bit with the linked/parallel blogs idea. Not sure quite how it's going to work, but maybe we can keep some parallel discussions going.

    Thank you, lovely people.

  75. 3p4

    I admire your optimism. I'll continue to plod on, although more in hope than real faith that things will change for the better in the foreseeable future, seems the only thing to do. Very glad that things have turned round for your son.

    I've been a grandma for a while now - still waiting for the wisdom.

  76. I think I speak for all of your Uk mates - we is overjoyed you is pleased.

    Love to Montana from her UK mates.

    ps - lass you is simply class.

  77. Hey Montana - you got mail!

    I will be taking a bit of a step back as I think it might do me some good, but I won't be disappearing, that's for sure. Too many good people here - and that includes Hank and MF.

    I said yesterday I was the No 1 Drama Queen round here. I suppose I had to go and prove it really, for the non-believers.

    But I will twat anyone if they dare actually accuse me of liberal hand-wringing! :p

    Have a good evening all xx

  78. Hank

    Sure, my trigger finger isn't underused but I'm not the sociopath that some people on here see me as.

    I didn't think you were. Keep that trigger finger ready - we'll need it on the barricades!

  79. BB
    - drama queen - you?

    You should have lived on my street (not me mum not me 2 sisters) it must have been my toe.

    I am a fan of yours.

    (non stalker)

  80. @sheffpixie - nice one, but it's a serious point and it goes to the heart of the debate that's been going on here the last few days...

    Are we angry or just a bit peeved? And if we're angry, aren't we entitled to express that anger in ways which discomfort liberals who aren't actually angry but just a little bit, well, peeved?

    I find this debate genuinely fascinating. For me, it sorts the men from the boys. And Guardianistas will be, have been, will always be boys. Their anger is tepid at best because they have never really lost anything, never been vulnerable, never suffered.

    Being prolier than thou, now, whether Kiz likes it or not, but bad times are a coming, battle lines are being drawn, and the liberal hypocrites at the Graun will be as useful as chocolate firemen.

    Fucking amazes me really with all the injustice in the world that some people get so agitated about "politeness".

    There really are bigger issues to be concerned about in the world than being courteous to those in positions of authority. And if commenting on Cif is not to be taken seriously, because it's just a fucking newspaper, then maybe you shouldn't be commenting, as you clearly have nothing of interest to say.

    As I said earlier, just a way of passing the day.

    Well, if you want to make the world a little better, how about working at your job rather than pissing your time away on CiF?

    Ooh, watch out for that tungsten teapot!!

  81. "As I said earlier, just a way of passing the day."

    For this sad soul - its a step or two

    Hank write the paper - it's far too important to be lodged on a tail end like now.

    As you well know Montana will post - "as discuss this day" - and why not the issue is of urgency.

  82. Hank says

    "And if commenting on Cif is not to be taken seriously, because it's just a fucking newspaper, then maybe you shouldn't be commenting, as you clearly have nothing of interest to say."

    Come on Bro its the same message with a more subtle possibility of winning - viz:

    "And if commenting on Cif is not to be taken seriously, because it's just a fucking newspaper, then maybe we shouldn't be commenting, as we clearly have nothing of interest to say.

  83. Deano, you're a treasure, and I don't mean by that that you should be buried, but you've lost me today, mate. None more so than now.

    Quiet on here tonight eh, mate? Where's everyone gone?

    Did you see the Manchester derby today btw? Great game full of comedy defending and Fergie dancing like your dad at a family wedding. Would have been even better if the ref's watch hadn't stopped long enough for little Michael to grab the winner.

  84. oh fucking bliss - an owl on my van.

  85. Hank

    I'll try again - having said sorry for my obscurity.

    Message simple - Hank on song wins many followers.

    Hank on sour wins nowt but sadness and confusion.

    Hank has lots of important and interesting things to say but keeps pissing his natural audience off - cos of of his angst./

    Truth be known - what the fuck does Deano know (soft twat who can't quite grow a tomato)

    Hank - simple warm message our kid - draw breath before you hit the enter key.

    Read this thread from top to here-

    You will have fans (including me) but the others will have too.

  86. I can't keep up with footy.

    I refuse to watch Murdoch and quite deliberately only catch up on the results two weeks later.

    I have to admit it makes for a stilted conversation when my sons phone me.

    What the hell - as Dennis Potter said " I've called my (illness ) Rupert"

  87. Glad you are feeling better Montana, it's always nice when they stop hitting you, and you can hope.

  88. Despite my best endeavours - my age lets me down.

    I failed by two to make the half case. And yet not long ago as the day was long I made the full case.

    I retire to consider/reconsider my position.

    Good night all.

  89. Hank
    Are we angry or just a bit peeved?

    I'm angry as hell, as are lots of others - others are scared by the issues and choose not to think about them. And there are those who simply don't give a shit. Don't think either of the last two groups are regular visitors to the UT though.

    you're a wise old bird - no wonder you've got owls on your van you lucky bugger.

    Being a bit of a lightweight tonight and toddling off - so one more glass of red, then bed. 'night all.

  90. @deano - yeh, sort of got where you were coming from, but who's to say when I'm on song and when I'm off key? Seems to me that some agree with what I said and some don't.

    I stand by what I said. I'm one voice amongst many and I don't see why others should get arsey about what I have to say. They have a voice as well and a right to offend me just as I might offend them. If they walk away because they can't debate, engage or challenge what I've said,that's not my fault.

    We're all grown ups here, all intelligent people, most of us have fairly strong opinions about things.

    If people walk away because they can't deal with their position being challenged, well, that's not my intention and I'm sorry if I have caused that.

    As I said above, BB and Kiz are far more integral to this place than me. So if the consensus is that I'm an irritant driving away the popular posters, I'll do the decent thing.

    I'm not being critical for the sake of it. I actually think that the debate on here today has been interesting and worthwhile. And I would like to stop around here if BB, Montana, scherfig and certain others who have interesting things to say are happy for me to be here.

    But if, on the other hand, I'm driving the regulars away and causing Montana grief, I will flounce off. Again.

  91. Ah. Football. At least our Scouse contingent are happy this weekend.

  92. Brother/Comrade Hank - pause for breath..

    You may in your haste miss my message.

    You have lots of interesting and, in my view, important things to say.

    Just pause a while - and think - "if I say it this way will I win an understanding". And "if I say this way will I find something hostile."

    What the fuck do I deano know I was on your side - I tried to tell you what I heard. What I heard was that you were clumsy in the telling of the tale.

    If you were to flounce off again it would have been futile.

    You are familiar with the story of half bake.

    Fucking stop arsing around and start posting your interesting thoughts here on UT - else.

    Did you hear me deano?

  93. "Ah. Football."

    Most of us have a love-hate relationship with it, Montana,when we're watching half-arsed clowns at Forest. Hate that. The love bit is, well, ....

    ...fancy running away with me to Barcelona?

    Visca el Barca!

  94. Montana
    Torres' first goal was agem.

    And I'm glad we've finally got the UT premiership flouncing award going.

    If I don't get twenty nominees by sunrise I'm going to strop off too. And slam the dooor.



  95. @deano - yup, I get what you're saying now, daddio. I don't care anymore. I'm not going to sugar the pill and I shouldn't have to. I genuinely don't understand why you have taken offence at my post at the top of today's thread. It was all of a piece with my posting history. No bullshit, take it or leave it, pick the fucking bones out of that.

    You've taken offence at it for some reason, deano. I can only guess that you've done so because some of the Cif regulars also took offence and you're looking to build some bridges, having offended some of them recently.

    Just a guess that, btw, but an educated one.

    You said earlier that you would have given me a good kicking, deano.

    Badly misjudged comment, old man. Bang out of order. Especially as it was posted to ingratiate yourself with the regulars on here.

    Grow some balls, deano. You're old enough to do so. And take responsibility for your opinions.

    And don't ever threaten to kick the shit out of me. Jeez. Sober up, you sad old bastard.

  96. ...fancy running away with me to Barcelona?

    I'll meet you at Camp Nou.

    BW -- the boy is pretty. And apparently, he's a good husband, too. Rafa said so.

  97. Sagrada Familia would be easier, Montana. It's on the bus route and it's a lot smaller than the Camp Nou. But hey, love will conquer all...xx

  98. I'm unfamiliar with the bus routes in Barcelona. Sagrada Familia works for me. I put it in every Sim City I ever made.

  99. I'm a Philistine. This is beautiful and someone has linked to him here before.

  100. Off to bed now Montana but I feel like a kid on Xmas Eve in a way, waiting to see what gifts you've laid out here in the morning...

    ...I'm wishing for world peace, an equitable distribution of wealth, and kizbot being shown up for the small minded hypocritical arse licker she is.

  101. This comment has been removed by the author.

  102. You've taken offence at it for some reason, deano

    sounded to me like empathy,, and the good kicking was the same ,,it wasnt violence or corporal punishment it was a statement of respect and trust,,

    Sober up, you sad old bastard.

    and if that is true does that make it useful to say it ?

    i recommended loads of your posts on cif by the way,,so dont think i am biased against your opinions,,but ,,just for instance,,on what can you base the statement ,," they are non too bright" this is not about manners its about truth,,fact,, opinion,, and bias,, the truth about jess and bella i cant judge ,,the facts i cant see,,the opinion your entitled to and the bias is for us all to see in ourselves if we care about truly moving forward and being in solidarity and i dont mean the untrusted i mean the whole species,,

    and thats the most strident i am ever likely to get,,

  103. ... and there's a nice present for kizbot: an abusive piece of graffiti scrawled by a bitter drunk. That'll help the search for world peace ok.

    !Hala Madrid¡

  104. No need to lash out at Kiz, Hank, if you want people to take CiF more seriously then its better to try and persuade them why rather than abuse them.

  105. Hank

    As I said above - I hope you carry on posting here you often have very interesting things to say. And I enjoy reading them usually in agreement. You do not visit as often as might.

    I thought that to suggest that Montana had been associated with a betrayal ...."I felt really let down by your op-ed piece. Betrayed in fact" - was how you put it.......was OTT.

    The lady of course needs no support from me but as she said the day before UT is special to her and functions very much as a circle friends given her isolation.

    I know from her comments that she, as many of us here do, has a high regard for you. Thus intended or not your comment appeared unnecessarily and unfairly hurtful.

    That it may have played a small part in reducing the potential of this place by encouraging departures simply seemed a careless waste for no material advantage.

    But then what do I know

    Balls or no balls I shall continue to read your contributions when you care to make them with great pleasure. I remain a fan of yours albeit a sometimes critical one.

    With a little more honing and a little less bile you my dear friend could be a superstar.

  106. ps

    Deano winning friends Hank?

    Are you mad? With his record of tedium and twaddle I think not.

    Sincere regards.