30 April 2010


Supernova SN 1006, the brightest supernova in recorded history, appeared in the constellation Lupus in 1006.  George Washington was sworn in as the first President of the United States at Federal Hall in New York in 1789.  The 1938 FA Cup Final between Huddersfield Town and Preston North End was the first ever to be televised.  Queen Beatrix ascended the throne of the Netherlands in 1980.

Born today:  Carl Friedrich Gauss (1777-1855), Alice B. Toklas (1877-1967), Jane Campion (1954) and Lars von Trier (1957).

It is Queen's Day in the Netherlands and Walpurgis Night wherever Walpurgis Night is celebrated (Valborgsmässoafton in Sweden -- lovely way to spend an evening).


  1. Oh I am still recovering from the pretend debate last night. I'm sure that wasn't what we were taught was a debate at school. But I didn't waste my time: During it I had a carrot cake in the oven.

    It's just so funny: in Australia Brown's comment about that woman would have been a normal exchange in the street. And the debate would have been almost fisticuffs. I found myself wishing for a classic Paul Keating stunner as he once said to the opposition leader trying to get into govt again. "Mate, a souffle never rises twice."

  2. Who else feels like spitting when they read the Grauniad's 'pundits' (a word they use because they can't spell 'charlatans')on last night's debate?

    Kettle, Freedland and White all hand it to Pie Face. Kettle the arch-Blairite and closet-Tory is no surprise. White is just a Westminster glove-puppet, positioning himself so as to have 'access' after the election and Freedland is just hopelessly dim (as anyone who's attempted to read his sub-Dan Brown rubbish, written as 'Sam Bourne', will know. I mean, how can you be worse than Dan Brown? Freedland manages it).

    Why hasn't the Graun mentioned the countrywide upsurge in voter registration (15 to 20%) that is almost certainly to the LibDem's advantage? And how could anyone think that Cameron's vacuous, soundbite-powered, PR exercise 'won' the debate? He was repellent.

    The Graun's descent into the moronic inferno continues unimpeded...

  3. Morning All,

    Yes, I've become a genuine, 100% kosher, CiF Refugee!.... it's only taken about 2 years of caterwauling from various quarters, from a bunch of racist, right-wing lunatics with over-active thyroids, but have been in pre-mod for 3 days now, (I'm guessing for the heinous crime of equating Jewish suffering with Arab suffering) and it's getting worse.... no posts have appeared for over 19 hours and I guess that is effecively 'banning' in everything but name. I've noticed so many good folk have gone the way of the Village of the Banned/Damned and eternal limbo of pre-mod, I wonder why I was given grace for so long.... perhaps as Mr Popularity is leaving, he wants to expunge all the genuine, long-time Ciffers as his swan song. Fuck 'em!

    La Rit

  4. They put me into pre-mod under my last username a couple of months ago, for the heinous crime of calling Libby Brooks a shameless and discredited scribbler.

    I can't remember what username I was...@pongothecat?@ozymandibles?

    No matter, I've had so many since I got banned under my real name a couple of years ago.

    Anyway, I immediately sent the mods an email telling them they were a bunch of spineless toadies and half-wits and they could stuff their 'pre-mod' and minutes later I had re-signed up as philmarlowe.

    So for what it's worth La Rit, just tell 'em to go fuck themselves and become a new username.

  5. That debate was incredibly boring. Cameron vacuous and refusing to answer any questions. Clegg just repeating himself. Found myself agreeing with the first half of Brown's sentences and vehemently disagreeing with the second half.

  6. Hi La Rit ;)

    "Kettle, Freedland and White all hand it to Pie Face. Kettle the arch-Blairite and closet-Tory is no surprise."

    Kettle's vile - the consummate Blairite little Tory.

  7. LaRit - ave! But given the current pluck-up on the site (vanishing comments, barking time-stamps, disappearing avatars, and a lot of 'sorry', '404' and 'service unavailable' gubbins), even for those of us somehow not in pre-mod, it could simply be that your contributions are currently in an IT holding pen until capacity is reached, at which point they will be shot out all over the place like when a pinata explodes.

    Wait and see.

  8. And on the subject of CiF pundits, what the hell's this with Jenkins referring to my lot, annetans lot and thauma/scherf's lot as "The Celts"?

    Does this mean all articles on England will refer to "The Angles, Saxons, various small indigenous tribes and Viking Settlers"?

  9. Never mind, Your Grace...Jenkins is the fool who poured scorn on Londoners like myself who objected to the waste and utter uselessness of the Millenium Dome.

    His columns on the subject in the late 90s (in the Evening Standard and elsewhere) were models of partisan spite and hackery, for which his chum Blair had him knighted. "Arise, Sir Bootlicker..."

    Funnily enough, Jenkins doesn't mention the glorious success of the Dome much these days...

  10. Hello Misha, Jay and Phillipa - bloody refreshing to have nice friendly folk being welcoming, thanks for the tips (I await the 'exploding Pinata' of posts from the pre-mod holding pen!.... it's been bloody carnage on CiF of late)

    Looks like a "fuck you, you feeble-brained, partisan, wankers" e-mail to the Mods is long overdue, Misha...I'll just ban myself if it carries on much longer.

    I should have employed my time more productively, instead of wading through the piles of sludge that CiF has become....I really don't know why I have been battling along on there... the vast majority of the articles are boring rubbish and the right-wing Nu-Lab voices of people like Glover and that vile costermonger 'Volpone' Rawnsley is enough to make the angels weep tears of endless rage and frustration.

    Anyway, not that anyone should really care, but just in case "La Ritournelle" disappears forever, it will at least be on terms I no longer am prepared to engage with. ;-)

    As for the 'heated debate' last night, does anyone actually believe anything that dimbo Cameron says? (except, of course, for all his adoring fans/morons trying to pass as journalists on the Sun)

  11. misharialadwani,

    and he also accused James Kelman's Booker prize winning "How late it was, how late" of being 'literary vandalism' and an ínsult to literature which patronises savages'. The novel is written in Glaswegian.


    Charlie Brooker got it bang on when he said Cameron has the worried look of the fat controller attempting to piss through a hula hoop without touching the sides.

    To think that twunt could be PM...

  12. La Rit, when you've had the same username for a long time (and you've been around as La Rit for as long as I can remember), it's a bit of a wrench to lose it.

    I was livid when they banned me, even though I'd only been posting for 7 or 8 months. Afterwards, though, given the general decline of the Graun in general and CiF in particular, it didn't bother me and after a slew of usernames, deletions and bannings, I just started my own blog (click on my name).

    Now I'm just a Cif hit-and-run merchant...I mean, fuck it: who wants to engage with the likes of 'Commenter of The Year' MaM (the archetypal dreary Thatcherite golf-club bore)?

  13. LaRit: Nice friendly folk are mostly welcoming; it would be more refreshing to see an arrogant pompous asshat being welcoming.

    Therefore (is that the right word here?), a very hearty welcome from me, too.

  14. @LaRit - a comment of yours appears on the Freedland thread, timed around 7:40 this morning. Perhaps the log-jam's shifting.

  15. 13th Duke:

    I didn't get around to reading the Charlie Brooker - what a perfect description of that smug, upper-class arse Cameron.... the lack of the top lip is particularly disconcerting.

    Me, I'm so dreading a Tory win, I'm getting me spray paint out and going on a vandalising spree... there's a Tory ad in Vauxhall (sub-text: "we'll solve yoot unemployment by bringing back National Service for 16 year olds") is begging for a spot of slice 'n' dice and spray art :-)

    As for Jenkins.... wasn't he whipping people into a frenzy, demonising the urban foxes in his precious Hampstead enclave a couple of years back? The man is pathetic.


    It really would be a wrench to depart and say ta-ra to "La Ritournelle" it's been a long, long time (nearly as long as it's been running) - but when the forum has become so compromised and you're perpetually monitoring what you post, trying to fight off serial stalkers (or in the case of me posting pissed and angry - throwing caution to the wind and letting rip) it becomes an exercise in tedium. becoming a CiF 'hit n run' merchant sounds appealing!!!!

    I checked out your blog - had a quick look, but I'll look forward to reading it properly. Esp. the importance of books .... music to my ears... I've started reading voraciously again, there's not enough time in the day ;-)

  16. Elementary Watson:

    "a very hearty welcome from me, too"

    Thank you most graciously ;-)

  17. "As for the 'heated debate' last night, does anyone actually believe anything that dimbo Cameron says?"

    This is what i dont understand. When Cameron talks about looking after the poor and the crime of rising inequality, surely every adult knows it is meaningless posturing - he is Etonian, Bullingdon leader of the COnservatives, it goes without saying that he is lying through his teeth.

    Astonished to hear about him "winning" the debate, he just lies, evades questions, and looks bloody shifty when his policies are questioned by the other two.

  18. Thing is, Jay, his 'policies' were really nothing of the sort--they were either outright lies ("we will stop benefits to people who refuse work" = DWP policy for many years, FFS) or vague aspirations ("we will feel the beating hearts of small businesses"= whatever the fuck that means...weird Aztec rites?).

    That anyone with an IQ higher than their shoe-size could be taken in by this egregious and transparent gibberish is a sad testimony to peoples gullibility/dishonesty...

  19. Jay,

    This is what i dont understand. When Cameron talks about looking after the poor and the crime of rising inequality, surely every adult knows it is meaningless posturing - he is Etonian, Bullingdon leader of the Conservatives, it goes without saying that he is lying through his teeth


    There was a bit last night, where he spoke directly to us about the Bankers. As his platitudes farted out the TV he parped "We are talking about the banks, the banks that both you and I use."

    I was shouting "What, fucking Rothschilds and Coutt's?"

    Why can't people see that everything he says is complete spin, he doesn't believe a word that comes out his own mouth.

    Did anyone else notice how censorious the tone of Cameron and Brown became when talking about Unemployment and those on benefits?

    They used a straight bat when talking about the Banks but as soon the undeserving poor came up it was open season.

    Vomit inducing.

  20. "Thing is, Jay, his 'policies' were really nothing of the sort--they were either outright lies"

    Be fair, im pretty sure his inheritance tax plans are very genuine indeed.

  21. "Why can't people see that everything he says is complete spin, he doesn't believe a word that comes out his own mouth."

    I'd like to think people are just starved of options under FPTP, and that with PR, over a generation maybe, their support would dwindle to about 20% of the vote.

  22. PeterJ:

    Ah-ha.... I shall check it out - cheers for the heads-up.... perhaps Phillipa was right about the exploding pinata?????

    Anyway, suffice to say, I'm giving CiF a rest for a bit. Far more interesting people here on the Untrusted ...


  23. JayR:

    "he just lies, evades questions, and looks bloody shifty when his policies are questioned by the other two"

    And then has the nerve to preen himself as if he's discovered the bloody cure for cancer, adjusting his tie like David Brent.

    Bleeeeeeucchhh.... I spit on him.


    "We are talking about the banks, the banks that both you and I use."

    I was shouting "What, fucking Rothschilds and Coutt's?"

    That would have been you and I in chorus then... I was shouting the exact same thing!!!

  24. What sums up Tory economic proposals is the hiding away of Boy George Osborne.

    Wee Georgie is so manifestly dim that one gets the impression he couldn't count to eleven if you shot pure methamphetamine into his frontal lobes AND took his shoes off.

    And this is the cluck their proposing to put in charge of the economy? The City's been shitting itself...no wonder they've been keeping the bastard under wraps.

  25. I say, jolly well said everyone.

  26. it is, of course they're not their (sigh). I could use some meth in my own frontal lobes...

  27. thauma: what operating systems do you use on your servers?

  28. Apparently, Esther "Rude Shaped Veg" Rantzen, who's running as an Independent in Luton, has just said:

    "“We can make Luton prosper. Make it a destination town."

    Of course. Like Rome, Paris or New York: come to Luton and view our famous...erm...unemployed people? Empty car factory? Vast selection of charity shops?

    Mind you, I suppose she's an improvement on the wretched Carol Voordman, beside whom Rantzen looks like Marie Curie...

    What a world...

  29. Medve, Windows for the app servers (although some are virtual servers hosted on a Linux box) and Linux for db.

    Very funny post by EnglishHermit.

  30. thauma: I am testing a an amazon type cloud and i am also in charge of a couple of xen boxes (all linux). I sometimes use windoze under qemu. One of my scientific editing customers insists i use use ms word which i run under linux using wine.

  31. I run most things using wine.

  32. I mostly run on wine, whine, and cider ; )

    Who do you think will be on the Cif MH panel? And who should be...

    I'd like to see;



    bitey, cos he's totaly radio rental.

  33. misharialadwani
    Just clocked your first post this morning. Yes indeed. Excellent comment.

  34. Hi La Rit - and welcome to the refuge. Not been around much myself lately due to caring duties but not been on Cif too much either. ALthough I did post a couple last night after seeing the whole front page wankfest over cocunut cameroon.

    How the fuck can anyone think of voting for that horrible, pink cheeked, bumfluff moustachioed dick?

    I was so pissed off last night I even went on Tory home and told em to stop crowing - its not in the bag and even if they do manage an outright win it will be a pathetic one. And then - as Merv so rightly says - they will be out for a generation! Ha ha ha ha ha HA!
    God i am fed up!

  35. Hello folks. Not much to say. Thought I would say hello. Another lazy day for me, but still, I am somewhat busy

  36. "How the fuck can anyone think of voting for that horrible, pink cheeked, bumfluff moustachioed dick?"

    Baffles me too, it really does. I can understand big earners doing it, desperate to hold onto those extra pennies in tax, but normal people - just beyond explanation.

    All this talk about his Eton/Bullingdon background being irrelevant is nonsense - he makes it relevant when he stands for a party that looks after that privileged few as its primary purpose. Its relevant when millionaires give tax breaks to other millionaires, which is exactly what he has said he will do.

  37. horrible, pink cheeked, bumfluff moustachioed dick

    Thank for that, PCC - we have had some good ones on here today!

  38. It is all really disheartening isn't it, I just couldn't bring myself to watch the debate last night so I watched Predator instead, less likely to give me bad dreams.

    Whatever happens after the election, and I honestly don't know what is likely to happen, it won't be long before my situation changes for the worse probably

    It might be the kick up the backside I need you never know but I am horribly anxious about the situation as a whole, I feel like bad times are coming for everyone.

    And on that cheery note hello and hope everyone is well.

  39. Jay - I know. I read the Sun with their 'Cams the man' witty headline. And I put a comment up that for most readers of The Sun - if they fit into the hideously stereotypical category of C1 and below in the socio economic scales then they are voting directly against their own best interests if they take their favourite reads advice. Never got put up - funny that.

    I hate him Thauma. Really detest him. When I ventured onto Tory home I nearly fainted clean away - they are all up there. A proper rogues gallery. Including Satan herself.

    Jennifer - I am also extremely worried. In fact I have been properly down the last few days because I just think really bad times are coming for many in the next couple of years. I am ill and my stepfather is severely disabled and ill and a couple of other members of my family are ill. So it really worries me what will happen if huge cuts are made to benefits and people are thrown off sickness benefits and bullied into working.

    A friend of mine who works for the DWP says there is unease amongst some there who fear that someone mentally unstable will be forced into a job and could end up killing themselves or someone else. But the government just do not care.

    What with the lady who died in Camden due to lack of social services care and help from the council, the people who jumped off those flats, the single mother who killed herself and her child and the young girl who killed herself last week. That is a hell of a lot of people in just the space of a year that have been lost their lives since Labour brought in their draconian new measures. Yet almost no real interest from the media and certainly no linking of these tragic cases into a more interlinked narrative.

    God help us all if Cameron gets in. The only thing I can hope for is that people get out on the streets and start to fight back and that workers walk out if swingeing cuts are enacted.

    Anyway I am off for now to go and do a bit of stuff for my ma. But I will try and pop in later, I think making time to check in here is going to be vital for my sanity in the coming days!

  40. Cameron's face with

    bumfluffed moustachioed dick


    Could this be the first in the exclusive range of UT designed T-shirts?

  41. Hi All,

    Thauma, horses also have dichromatic colour vision apparently, but I wasn't able to quickly find out whether it was exactly the same as dogs.

    Was anyone else thoroughly creeped out by GB's smile at the end of the leaders debate yesterday?

  42. Why, oh, why had I forsaken the UT? It was at least 2 months before my CiF frustrations made me remember!!!!!

    I've just come back from seeing a friend of mine (bit of a closet Tory, but actually a very sweet person, if you can imagine it, but don't worry, she registered too late to vote) and have been pissing myself laughing at some of the comedy on here..... as PCC says: she'll need to be here for her sanity in the coming months.....

    Talking of La ChipChops.... good to see you too ;) - if you come back to this thread later I just wanted to commend you for your sterling bravery on one of the Greek Economy threads last week ..... the racism on those threads took my breath away even if my fella wasn't half-Greek, I was still shocked by some of what I read that was permitted to stand.

    Like many others, I feel a very deep sense of unease at the prospect of Tory rule for the next 5 years. My situation too is very fragile.
    If they do win the balance of power, then that fat, noxious, little oik Osbourne will be jacking the budget and introducing a budget all of his own, overriding funding ear-marked for vital services for the next five years and handing tax breaks to their big business pals and rich friends.

    However, I'm hoping that all it will take is a year of being under the cosh of those vile bastards and come the next election, they will hopefully never see the light of day again - we'll bury the vampires once and for all and this time with a proper stake through the heart.

  43. Afternoon, everyone.

    As my very first deletion on CiF was for calling someone (can no longer remember the name, it was a long time ago) a bigot, I can’t help but be amused by Brown’s little problem the other day.

    But if it’s not considered appropriate for Matt Seaton’s cosy little Jaffa Cake party, then I hardly think it’s the sort of language we should expect from a once and aspiring Prime Minister.

    I can’t comment on last night’s debate – I have made a point of avoiding all of them – but solely on the evidence of posters and signs I’ve spotted down here, I tip the Conservatives to take North Cornwall and UKIP (who called them as the BNP who shop at M&S? Brilliant!) to take North Devon.

    Welcome to La Rit, although I believe you were a formerly a regular here back in the old days, so maybe welcome back is more apt.

    “I'm giving CiF a rest for a bit. Far more interesting people here on the Untrusted...”

    And clearly a woman of enormous discernment :-)

  44. Hi Andy, good to see you about.

  45. Also got your mail thanks, Duke, responded.

  46. princess,

    sorry to hear about your troubles and I hope things look up for you. Keep posting your gold on here and CiF.

    As for the Sun, just remember John Stuart Mill's maxim:

    "Conservatives are not necessarily stupid people, but most stupid people are Conservatives."

  47. Hello Andy

    "I believe you were a formerly a regular here back in the old days, so maybe welcome back is more apt"

    I was, but over a year of barely functioning internet, plus a bizarre grinding away at CiF like someone with tunnel vision and suddenly, I saw the light again.... and what a relief ;)

    And why, of course, very discerning.... !

    Hopefully, our seat is a pretty safe Labour one... there have been the odd timid rumblings from the Tories (touting one of their totally-cool like efnic candidates) but a bloody blitzkrieg from the Lib Dems, they're not leaving anything to chance.

    I have up-loaded a profile pic of the Athens riots of a while back.... coming to the streets near you post May 6!

  48. Afternoon all

    La Rit - great to see you over here.

    On the basis that I can't find anyone I really want to vote for in my constituency I have decided to give my vote to someone else, who'll be from Afghanistan, Bangladesh or Ghana. Apparently they'll contact me by text message and tell me who they want to vote for and why.

  49. Fuck fuck fuck, I am mad as hell.

    Jobseeker direct online search-- Fucked. Absolutely uselss website. They revamped it. Hardly show any jobs. Not that I'l get anything over the dizzying heoghts of £5.80 an hour.

    Finding a physical job centre in the city becaue the website is so fucked. This itself is fucked. Google maps gave several adresses, all of which yielded places which were not JC's. Spent many hours ovrer the previous several days trudging round teh city looking for them. I actually found one last week but I cannot remember where it is now. The thing is, the physical job centre had a vastly greater number of jobs available than the rubbish online site, that is why it is imperative to go to the physical JC.

    The job centre website tells me where their central one is but I was there a few days ago and it wasn't there. Tried ringing up the job centre (call centre) just now, and got nothing concrete. I just phoned the named phone number for 'Glasgow central' and it says the phone number is not availaalbe any more Fuck. And the other one I went to, there were signs of it being a job centre once, but it was closed down and empty.

    Finally, fuck NVQs in silly little things. Fuck the system of employment. This is a race to the bottom, where only compliant idiots can get a job. Not to mention that my choice of jobs is limited, I have a moral objection to many jobs I feel are based on deceit, this includes tihngs like telesales, advertising and 'charity muggers'. I would rather starve than do such immoral labour.

  50. Ok, I have finally found a job centre (the one I had already visited last week, after much hard effort and phone calling. Even then I had to then resort to trundiling along with google street view until I found it. Oh well, too late now. Maybe next week, I will continue, to the dizzying heights of £5.80 an hour.

  51. It is one big mess NapK our jobcentre doesn't have jobs up anymore, an advisor just goes through the online system with you now.

    I don't sign on at the moment but I still have to go for regular interviews and it is truly a depressing place.

    This is why when people say 'just get a job' you can basically dismiss them as being from a different world.

    You even have to go through all the online application forms to volunteer now, it's a joke.

  52. Hope not too many folk in the US go along with this Scary stuff.

  53. Hello fellow Celts and - erm - other non Celtic people. Hello too - to half Celtic person -Paul.

    This country is on a journey to nowhere.

    Hi La Rit- you sound cross my dear !


    Turminder or Duke will hoefully be able to advise you re Glasgow . Sounds depressing and frustating.

  54. Sheff

    What frightning people - the gomo who didn't undestand te question about 'building *on top* of the Palestinians looked almost normal before he opened his mouth.

  55. Morning all

    Hi La Rit-always enjoy reading your late nite posts
    on cif!

    On a bit of a 'downer' vis-a-vis political situation.
    Only saw highlights of yesterdays debate on the news
    but even these further fuelled my loathing for
    the political classes.Everything nowadays is spun
    and stage managed and like so many i feel not only
    completely detached from the process but also completely powerless.

    And i am genuinely fearful of the future.Know i,ve said it before but the shit is really going to hit the fan at some stage in this country.And if Cameron becomes next PM i won,t be surprised if he ends up being more hated than Thatcher.And that,s saying something.Compassionate Conservatism my arse!It,s a contradictory saying in itself.Politics is shifting to the Right and the middle classes again will be largely complicit.But if you,re living in the wrong part of town you will be expected to jump through ever more hoops for the few 'crumbs' that are thrown your way.And still be blamed for every social ill possible. I fear that many deprived working class communities are so fragmented that they will simply tear themselves apart and the forces of the state will simply be used to contain the 'problem'.

    I despise the Tories but to be honest i don,t rate
    the LibDems or Labour either.Am toying with the idea
    of voting LibDem in the hope a surge in the LibDem vote will help bring about electoral reform.But i have this little voice in my head saying'who you trying to kid'.Not voting LibDem for any of their other policies because at the end of the day they
    are just as full of shit as the other parties.

    This country needs to go through a period of
    'cleansing' before something better takes root.A bit
    like a forest fire destroying the old but setting in
    motion the growth of something new and fresh.Trouble
    is how many people are gonna get hurt in the process?

  56. I'm not much use on the wild west (although if you get desperate Nap I've some contacts in Hamilton...), but empathaise about the jobhunting, i have 20 years experience, a relevant degree, and last year was getting £7ph for managing a bar.. The only way i survive on my part time wages is that it's above min wage and my crazy 'clean, paint and gardening in lieu of rent' deal...

  57. WElcome La Rit!

    From all your comments rather glad I watched Barenboim conducting/plying Bethoven's 4th Piano concerto last night (sky Arts 2).

    Really really worried about a Tory govt. Cuts in the health service will really damage my health possibly fatally, especially if they cut the grant to the WElsh Assembly and they have to remove the so far sacrosanct free prescriptions for pensioners. As everyone here gets their meds free it would impact on many younger people on regular meds as well.

    The trouble is no-one is really admitting to planning any cuts and everyone knows they are coming whoever gets in.

    Its just an unedifying game of smoke and mirrors to get power for its own sake. Sick making!

  58. Nap - hope something turns up soon, crossing everything for you.:)

  59. Rivetting (sp?) article on a really relevant subject over on Cif
    The necktie is a stylish tool of self-expression, not a symbol of oppression

    I despair!

  60. Sheff: I am afraid that is a forlorn hope. Harrowing video.

  61. afternoon all - good luck with the hunt, Napoleon, for a job centre as well as for a job...how screwed is that system? blimey.

    have just realised what was bemusing me about the libdem 'VAT on housing' thing that was raised last night - realised that I remembered the concept from my razor-sharp dissection of the Green party manifesto pledges on taxation (which got lost in blogger-purgatory, so you'll just have to take my word for it).

    will now have to dig out libdem pledge to see if it makes any more sense than the green party idea. which wouldn't be hard...

  62. Does anyone know what happens if New Labour come third but still get a majority of seats? (Apart from rioting in the East End of Newcastle, I mean!)

  63. OK, have found it

    Point 1 - the libdem manifesto has no 'whole word only' search function. thus, having just searched for VAT, I am aware that the word 'innovation' is used a worrying amount.

    Point 2 - this:
    Protect greenfield land and our built heritage by reducing the cost of repairs. We will equalise VAT on new build and repair on an overall revenue-neutral basis. This will also help to reduce the costs of repairs to historic buildings.
    makes little sense.

    OK, you can 'reduce the cost of repairs' by redusing the VAT rate from 17.5 to 5%, per Annex IV, but that excludes materials. Renovations of empty properties are already 5% rated and that also applies to materials. Conversions of non-res to res is already 5% and that also applies to materials.

    But 'equalising VAT on new build and repair' implies that new builds would be standard rated to build. But then they are zero-rated to sell - do they also mean that they would be standard rated to sell? Or that if repairs were brought down to 5%, buying a new house would be 5% as well? Whereas buying a 'resale' house is exempt - so that would be cheaper than either...

    Don't understand. VAT on construction is 'two-way'. VAT on houses needing work before sale is 'two-way'. What exactly are do they mean?

    Anyway. Parents are visiting, have just been to two of the most pointless 'museums' I have ever seen - one looked like they'd just tipped the contents of a madwoman's attic into a lot of display cases, and decided not to bother putting up any explanations - the other was a three part video presentation on the history of the town that contradicted itself part by part - and left a lot of unanswered questions (a church doesn't just 'disappear from the map' - it may burn down, fall down, be hit by lightning...it doesn't just disappear...)

    Anyway. Am getting to eat out a lot. Am laying down stores of fat. heh heh.

  64. OK, haven't clicked on the link yet, but could this:

    Why we should consider the privacy of animals
    Brett Mills: Wildlife documentary-makers are highly ethical people, so let's have a debate about whether filming without consent is right

    Possibly be the most Guardian article ever?

  65. Is anyone able to tell me - in simple terms - what exactly any of the 'economic solutions ' bandied around last night mean in real terms for people. I have failed to translate any of them into reality.

    The figures themselves made little sesnse, there were no actual commitments - got almost excited when 'manufacturing' was mentioned - soon deflated.

    The argument for green manufacturing industries made little sense in the light of recent closure in IOW. The building of onshore wind farms is so cost expensive - import of turbines, transport across country etc - very ungreen in themselves.

    Many wind farms already passed by planning are being held up simply because there are not enough turbines being produced. To say nothing of transmission corridors - inadequate. Has the loop from Scotland to N England been completed yet ?

    Pathetic attempts to reskill the unemployed have failed substantially - the cost of retooling closed industrial facilities and dock yards - no info at all just hot air and posturing. Talk of hi tech industry - after R+D money restricted for decades.

    Complete failure to assess current situation and no future vision.

    Housing, health , schools - whither Britain ?

  66. @philippa

    I saw that and had to double check that i wasn,t imagining it!Must ask the cat what she thinks!

  67. Have now read the thread, and yes, it is everything one could possibly hope for. An absolute car-crash, with furry animals. Genius.

    "Is anyone able to tell me - in simple terms - what exactly any of the 'economic solutions ' bandied around last night mean in real terms for people. I have failed to translate any of them into reality."
    No. For the simple reason that without figures relating to the expected cuts, and economic situation in general, they don't know either. This is pure 'back of the envelope' stuff - even the 'full costings' in some of the manifestos only deal with the topics they deal with, if you see what I mean, not the big picture.

    Like the equation we are facing is:
    a+b2 / ((zE + q)m)3 = P

    and we know that q = 47. at the moment. but that could change.

  68. Philippa,

    On CiF we have an article on ties and an article on the privacy of animals yet the David Conn article on the jobless is tucked away in an obscure part of the election coverage not open to comments.


    really, really, really, really important points. I do despair for the future of the country. The questions have not been answered in any way shape or form by any of the parties. Whilst all the time, the media get themselves into a lather over the 'debate' and who scored the most style points.

    And I agree with Paul. The shit really needs to hit the fan for something to change. Will it happen? Will people get out on the streets? I really don't know.

  69. Philippa,

    I'd love to go and comment on that article but after showing it to the guy I share an office with we've decided to go and hand ourselves in to the police: me for my PhD work filming birds (without their consent), him for his PhD work stalking butterflies. Don't worry, we'll drag our colleagues who camera trap* various animals with us!

    *method of monitoring involving cameras that go off automatically when animals walk past, not an actual "trap"

  70. @Your Grace - and the Conn jobless article interviews Laurie Penny as a typical unemployed person. How Guardian is that?

    A comments thread there would have a horrible fascination to it.

  71. Oh my god! Mad animal privacy man is on the radio!

    "there are debates raised about documentaries with humans in them that don't come up when the documentaries are about animals"

    interviewer sounds to be restraining himself manfuly - but there's a sense he just wants to shout "that's because they're sodding animals!"

    Your grace - where is that? I like Conn, his stuff on football finance has been really good.

  72. He seemed to be saying that humans filmed without their knowledge can be upset, andd we need to think about that re animals.

    One question. How the fuck is a lion going to find out it's been filmed? Lions don't watch television.

  73. PeterJ,

    Amazing isn't it? I started reading the Conn article just after my last post.

    For fuck sake, what planet are these people on?

    Philippa, please read PeterJ's health warning above. The article doesn't contain any real people.

  74. @Philippa - it's here.

    I got to it from a post on Waddya which pointed out the contrast between this and a puff-piece published simultaneously on that dreadful woman behind A4e. That advertorial is here.

  75. Too late, your grace.

    Good fucking God.

  76. Philippa,

    He is, to use a CiF phrase, totally effing hatstand!

  77. (animal privacy man, obviously)

  78. Pluck ate my comment! (on the article)

  79. @Your Grace and Philippa - here is the home page of the other typical jobless person interviewed in the Conn piece. Check out his profile.

  80. Ah, it's on my CiF profile but not the article, weird!

  81. Dot: a little patience and your comment will probably appear.

  82. Not yet medve, oh well, I have better things to do with my Friday night* than wait for my comment to appear!

    *cleaning out chickens and shopping, but hey ho!

  83. Nap - good luck in getting a job - the whole thing sounds horrendous!

    La Rit - Those Greek threads have driven me bonkers. If one more fuckwit says 'the Greeks get all they deserve, with their lying to the markets and their brilliant standard of living and how they spend all their time sitting drinking Ouzo, whilst poor Germans break their backs working in Mercedes factories blah blah..' I think I will blow Cif up.

    Leni - Extremely good questions and points. None of them are going to come clean. Because if any of them stand up and say 'We are going to mortgage you and your childrens future to protect the wealth and the capital of the elite, you will pay more taxes but have less services than at any time in history''. Well there would be a bloody riot.

    So they stand up and pretend to be different and argue and spout bullshit - and the news makes a big deal out of stupid, petty things like 'bigoggagte' and tries to distract us all with Westminster gossip.

    The IFS has said that the Labour and Lib Dem tax policies would mean cuts around the level of the seventies. The Tory cuts would be the biggest we have seen since the second world war. One person said they would take us back to the twenties in terms of state provision.

    Then today the NIESR said basic tax rates would have to rise by six pence in the pound to pay off the debt even with all the cuts.

    So great - tax hikes that will hit the lowest paid the hardest - 26% tax and huge VAT rises are hardest on a low salary - and then no essential public services investment either.

    Saw a terrifying article of what could be coming our way if the Tories and the right wing press get their way. In Colorado there is a county or a town (cant remember) where those who live there hate government so much that they have pushed through massive tax cuts and they have hardly any hospitals left, the police are so short staffed they cannot patrol and so taxi drivers volunteer and patrol whilst taxi-ing! There is no one to cut the grass anymore in parks etc so local residents do it on an ad hoc basis. Every other street lamp lacks a bulb - the residents gleefully took them out themselves.

    Of course for the well-off this is a bit of fun - darker streets, mowing the grass in the park. But for the poorest many shelters have closed as have out of hours clubs for kids, the only public hospital has shut too. The whole thing was absolutely unbeilevable and really scary.

    I just hope in Europe and the UK people fight back.

  84. Evening all (and hiya, LaRit) . Am going on my hols tomorrow so probably won't be posting here for a wee bit (haven't posted on CiF for a while, but that's by choice). Will though, attempt to put up on the UT gallery a photo taken of an artfully vandalised Tory poster. No photoshopping in a bedroom stuff, we;re talking artistic (got the fonts and everything to match),hands-on creative work here. It is/was just by my office and I had to snap it when I saw it: clocked it from a distance, but couldn't quite believe it said what I thought it said. Very well done.
    It's since been taken down/fixed and I don't think many people got to see it.
    n.b. The poster could equally have applied to New lab and the vile Purnell...).
    Give it a gander: should be up in about 5 mins...

  85. Have a good holiday Alsidair.

    Will see if the pic is up yet.

  86. That is brilliant! It has right cheered me up.

  87. Philippa/Peter,

    what I particularly love is that Penny's cultural reference point for living on the scrapheap is 'Withnail & I'.

    You know, whilst studying at Oxbridge, having a jolly old wheeze going into the Student Union and shouting "We want the finest wines available to humanity. And we want them here, and we want them now!"

    Living a hand to mouth disparate lifestyle is a personal choice and soooooo coool. Until it actually happens. Unspeakable.

    With this article and the puff piece for A4e, the Graun has well and truly jumped the shark, nuked the fridge, nuked the shark, jumped the fridge, take you pick.

    Alisdair, enjoy your holiday, I'll look out for that photo.

  88. Gosh. The Guardian's officially come out for the LibDems. Up to a point.

  89. Sheff

    he future is alarming.

    All the arguments are around paying off huge debts - debts not incurred by the people. But the people will pay.

    The economy being argued about is not the real economy - the economy within which the majority live - and often fail tp prosper.

    Any nation which cannot house, feed, educate and provide health care for the majority of people is a failed state. Nationhood becomes meaningless.

    The rich will hardly suffer at all - it will be our chidren and grandchildren who suffer poor education - cramped housing , unemployment and lack of medical care. The police will become repressive as anger rises and peope start to protest - I hope the people will protest.

    I am not prepared to sit back and watch everything working people strived for for generation being taken away - I will protest against going back to the 1840s - seeing millions on the scrap heap 'the surplus people ' ignored, despised and castigated for fecklessness and ignorance.

    My family struggled upwards over several generations - via mechanics'institutes, trade unions and finally in my father's generation university.

    Poverty is about much more than lack of money - it is about lack of opportunity and most importantly about the failure of the dispossessed to access services and education. The disempowerment of millions can lead to either acceptance and apathy - the direction in which the gvt. is trying to push us - or it can lead to anger and confrontation. I am now at the stage where I choose the latter.

  90. Can I just put rednorth's post here from the Milne thread and then I'm off to join the pissed up Dutch celebrating koninginnedag. Have a good evening all.

    Cameron had all the impact of a fart in the atmosphere of a gas giant. But oh so polished and spun within an inch of his meaningless life. Did he answer a single question? What scrutiny has there been of his Big Society? What do we know of it other than an army of volunteers must materialise from the fog of his imagination to replace the skilled workers doing those jobs now.

    Less Big Society than homespun yarn.

    For the first time in my life I'm ashamed to be British.

    Here we had three men, three rich men fronting rich political parties and the interests of the wealthy. Such hard men these, building their careers, their platforms, their governments on the backs of the most vulnerable in our society. It made me sick to my stomach to watch them competing to kick the poor and the unemployed, immigrants and asylum seekers, the very people their policies have most damaged.

    They should stand in shame for such populist opportunism and cynical pandering to ignorance and bigotry.

    As if it's the poor's fault that Thatcher destroyed British industry in the 80s, as if it's the poor's fault that despite their landslide New Labour did so little to ameliorate the worst excesses of Thatcherism, and instead compounded them with an economy built in the fantasy land of credit and toxic banking. How dare Cameron stand their and lament the lack of British Industry. Where does this inadequate little rich boy get the gall for such breathtaking hypocrisy?

    Three wise men then. Co-conspirators in the destruction of any vestige of the decency this nation once prided itself in.

    Here then, you three wise men, I scorn your perverted policies, I piss on your artless rhetoric, I scoff at your transparent lies, your fake tans, your polished foreheads, your cosmetic smiles and your feeble minds, and I call down on your heads the wrath of whatever god you crawl before in the hours before dawn, be it secular or spiritual.

    I hope you rot in the hell of your own depraved minds, sealed in your own poison.

    You make me sick.

    All three of you.

  91. NapoleonK:

    Very sorry to hear of your utter frustration about the job situation and the dire JC shite.... Hang on in there and as Berchie would say you take good care. :-)

    I was out of work for over a year and my fella for 17 months... it was hell, but even now, still a pretty fragile situation and I'm only wking p/t, he's not sure if the job will continue after July, so we could be back to square one again by then.


    Hey thanks and hello, a joy to be back here, I can tell you! And as for that link.... my god... Max Blumethal is one brave individual. Hats off to him for shining a big fat light the under-belly of US extremism.... that Dov fella is missing the 'E' off the end of his name, as well as quite a few marbles by the sounds of his frothing ranting...needs to change his name to errr... Hawk?


    Hey thanks too :-) nice to be appreciated, although I'm sure some of them were completely insane... why I didn't get banned for my Martin Amis/Anna Ford rant, I'll never know...


    I love that Mr Barenboim (like Mrs Doyle loves father Ted's voice "sure, Father, you have a beeoootiful voice, just loike that Celine Di-orn"

    Did you catch his Reith lectures a while back?

    Sorry am a bit crap with the html stuff...

    Here's the link:



    Yes, I am very, very cross, but hey... and you know what, I'm not even alloewed to 'recommend'.... re: your question about the economic situation, I think the answer is 42 ;)

  92. Dotterel:

    Are you studying 'Dotterel's' in particular for your PhD or any other kind of our avian friends? I am a very keen birdwatcher and just get filled with absolute joy.

    Saw my first (and probably only and sadly last) Hen Harrier (male) up in North Wales about 4 years ago, lovely Purple Sandpiper on the outer-reaches of Rhyl bay about 2 years ago. Oh and if you have chickens, am v. jaloux.... I've been obsessed with them since I was about 10... I really love the chickens, such sweet souls the lot of them ;-)

    Went to Ghana 5 years ago and was blown away - the amount of birds (little Toucan's, Giant Kingfisher's, Pied Kingfisher's, minature Cormorants, Vultures, Weaver Birds, Rollers, Eagrets, Kites everywhere.... I could go on and on)

  93. 13th Duke

    That was a truly remarkable post from rednorth...

  94. Hey Alisdair:

    I think I do owe you an apology from a long while back....another time mebbe?

    Have a lovely holiday and I look forward to the vandalised Tory poster pic.

  95. Met one of my elderly neighbours returning from
    the funeral of another elderly neighbour who recently
    died.The conversation went as follows-

    Me-hello Eileen you alright?

    Eileen-make sure you never get old love!

    Me-sorry to hear about Kate(the lady who died)

    Eileen-yes it is sad love-couldn,t stand her though!

    Me-Thought you,d been friends and neighbours for
    years (which i s true -they were always in each
    others houses and went to bingo and mass together)

    Eileen-ooh no love she used to get right on my nerves.
    It was a lovely service though.And the flowers were
    beautiful.Must go now love -got me ironing to do.bye!

    Me-bye Eileen.

  96. Obviously, it feels strange to be on the moral high ground but I feel a response is required to the BBC Trust's cowardly rebuke of my jokes about Palestine.

    As always, I heard nothing from the BBC but read in a newspaper that editorial procedures would be tightened further to stop jokes with anything at all to say getting past the censors.

    In case you missed it, the jokes in question are: 'I've been studying Israeli Army Martial Arts. I now know 16 ways to kick a Palestinian woman in the back. People think that the Middle East is very complex but I have an analogy that sums it up quite well. If you imagine that Palestine is a big cake, well...that cake is being punched to pieces by a very angry Jew.'

    I think the problem here is that the show's producers will have thought that Israel, an aggressive, terrorist state with a nuclear arsenal was an appropriate target for satire. The Trust's ruling is essentially a note from their line managers. It says that if you imagine that a state busily going about the destruction of an entire people is fair game, you are mistaken. Israel is out of bounds.

    The BBC refused to broadcast a humanitarian appeal in 2009 to help residents of Gaza rebuild their homes. It's tragic for such a great institution but it is now cravenly afraid of giving offence and vulnerable to any kind of well drilled lobbying.

    I told the jokes on a Radio 4 show called Political Animal. That title seems to promise provocative comedy with a point of view. In practice the BBC wish to deliver the flavour of political comedy with none of the content. The most recent offering I saw was BBC Two's The Bubble. It looked exactly like a show where funny people sat around and did jokes about the news. Except the thrust of the format was that nobody had read the papers. I can only imagine how the head of the BBC Trust must have looked watching that, grinning like Gordon Brown having his prostrate examined.

    The situation in Palestine seems to be, in essence, apartheid. I grew up with the anti apartheid thing being a huge focus of debate. It really seemed to matter to everybody that other human beings were being treated in that way. We didn't just talk about it, we did things, I remember boycotts and marches and demos all being held because we couldn't bear that people were being treated like that.

    A few years ago I watched a documentary about life in Palestine. There's a section where a UN dignitary of some kind comes to do a photo opportunity outside a new hospital. The staff know that it communicates nothing of the real desperation of their position, so they trick her into a side ward on her way out. She ends up in a room with a child who the doctors explain is in a critical condition because they don't have the supplies to keep treating him. She flounders, awkwardly caught in the bleak reality of the room, mouthing platitudes over a dying boy.

    The filmmaker asks one of the doctors what they think the stunt will have achieved. He is suddenly angry, perhaps having just felt at first hand something he knew in the abstract. The indifference of the world. 'She will do nothing,' he says to the filmmaker. Then he looks into the camera and says, 'Neither will you'.

    I cried at that and promised myself that I would do something. Other than write a few stupid jokes I have not done anything. Neither have you.

    Above from Frankie Boyle - comedian - in response to supine BBc. The media have lost all moral sense. Afraid to confront the powerful.

  97. Frankie Boyle

    Rock on. Another one who has chosen confrontation over simpering to the BBC and toeing the line....

  98. Paul

    Are you sure you weren't talking to Catherine Tate in disguise ;-)

  99. @ La Rit... '...as Grandma???'

    Is that Conspiracy Grandma?

  100. Thank you for your comments of support. After posting earlier, I went out for a walk round the city, and bumped into none other than chuggers terrorising the populace. Also, where I live there are many dive pubs, these are not pubs with tudor oak beams, they are like mini Colditzs' So, I don't think I will frequent them. And neither will I be going anywhere near the student bars and the city centre nightclubs. Really, not my cup of tea (:<. This makes socialising harder. I don't want to be surrounded by braying self centred students and I don't want to be in a dive bar.

    Interestingly, walking down one of the shopping parades near my town there was a second hand goods shop, called something like 'stolen goods' with the tagline, 'Our prices are so low they must have been shoplifted'. Operating right in the glare of daylight on a busy shopping street!!

  101. MonsieurWombat

    I realise I am talking to myself, pretty much.... hey ho!

    Conspiracy Grandma?.... ;-)

  102. @ La Rit: I do that. Sometimes I even get a sensible answer.

    @ medve, if you're around - thanks a lot for the election update from a couple of days ago, only just caught up. Bleak indeed.

  103. "I call down on your heads the wrath of whatever god you crawl before in the hours before dawn, be it secular or spiritual"

    I've said it before, but it bears repeating. I really think Rednorth should get to run something...

  104. Napoleon

    "This makes socialising harder. I don't want to be surrounded by braying self centred students and I don't want to be in a dive bar"

    In our hours, days, weeks, months of most need, we lost contact with a good deal of our friends... too embarrassed because we had no job and no money? or just didn't want to face the prosepct that they could be next and we were like 'bad luck' to be around .... a good proportion ignored us and we felt marooned.

    We couldn't afford a cheap meal out, go for a drink, hang out, or have fun, everything revolved around money and seeing other people who had no clue about how difficult it was.

    It was dire. Needless to say, I've never looked at some of them in the same way since and know who our true friends are.

  105. Alisdair that is BRILLIANT! ROFLMAO!!!!

  106. Shaz.... oh, god, sometimes it is the only way to get a sensible answer.... and not in a groovy, meditating kind of way, fuck that, anyway, Zizek practically pissed on that way of 'living/thinking' as any kind of solution from a great height. For others, I cannot speak, however....whatever way they reach the conclusion, is not for me to belittle.

  107. Behold, the 'national anthem' of Bashkorstan. I have a friend from there. Even if you cannot understand the words, I can't, appreciate the music.


  108. @NapoleonK:

    Mate, are you sure city life is for you? I mean, might you not be happier just cutting your losses, admitting that sometimes things just ain't meant to be, and heading back to the Isles? Or is that not an option?

    C наилучшими пожеланиями, товарищ,

  109. Nap

    No music - just texts .

  110. Swifty + Nap

    I have been wondering the same. I would find city life difficult but Nap may well adapt quite quickly.

    Nap - you need perhaps to find a friend - there must be some people there you could become friends with.

    Much depends on your long term aims - there are places between bustling city and social isolation.

    You have hit several difficult problems in one go - unemployment, uncongenial surroundings and being/feeling alone. Any one of these is upsetting and frightening - all together must seem like an enormity almost too much to face.

    If you can crack the lonliness one things may well start to look better.

  111. @ LaRit. Can't say I think I'm due an apology, and I can't recall falling out: it's eminently possible we disagreed over summat, so bloody what.Everyone disagrees on something of other, and that's not a problem, unless it becomes ludicrously protracted,intensifies or covers every single subject that arises.No apology needed and nice to see you here.
    By the way, and I think someone's alluded to it, the Guardian's financial woes (losing £100k a day) are in the new Private Eye, which reckons that certain big staff changes are a prelude to charging folk to read online. That'll kill CiF at a stroke.

  112. @Leni:

    Well, there's no point suffering for the sake of it. Things don't work out, too bad, he's not met anyone anyway so no loss of face there or anything, packing his bags and returning whence he came is surely nothing to be ashamed of.

    We all make mistakes, Lord knows I've made enough in my time. And better that than mooning around one of the greatest cities in the United Kingdom feeling miserable and not able to fit in. I'd give my eye teeth to be a youngster on my todd in Glasgow, to be honest.

  113. I notice The Grauniad has finally come off the fence and pitched up for the Lib Dems.
    They are all wetting their knickers over on CIF over this "volte face".
    No doubt Polly Toynbee is wetting her's too and burning the midnight oil polishing some gold plated "nose pegs".
    What price the headline on 7th May 2010: "It woz the Guardian wot won it?"

  114. I'm feeling the same way about The Graun "coming out" for the Lib Dems as I did when I heard that Ricky martin had "come out" as gay.

    A) So what?
    B) Quelle surprise.

  115. What japes, SwiftyBoy's here. Chocks away, chaps.

  116. Aye aye Hank. Propellor on automatic and all that.

    Are you well?

  117. Spiffing, old fruit. Moist with expectancy as your day of destiny draws nearer?

  118. Truly can't wait. I've been longing for a hung parliament for, ooh I dunno, yonks.

  119. Well, as long as you're ok, Swifty. That's what counts as far as Swifty's concerned.

  120. Hi Hank

    i see the Cons getting it - hope i/m wrong.

  121. swiftyboy.

    Absolutely not, there is no chance of me moving back home. Full of religious fundamentalists and birderline insane people. Talentless people, patriarchal heriarchy, secretive, shady deals, freemasons,religious bigotry and open hate speech, endless church schisms, open homophobia, just a few reasons. Plus there were many tensions with my family. My mother's side particulalry has a certain aspect of neurosis and dysfunctionality, and I have decided I want to sever as much as possible the ties with the place and the people.

    I just need to find the right clique to be honest. As I said before, my geographical location is not so important, as long as I can have internet acess and have a disciplined study strucutre. Yes, i live in a deprived area and yes I have a different view and lifestyle to many of the locals. But this is the best situation really. Edinburgh is much more Bourgoisie, but it is also more expensive.

  122. About my day of destiny, I mean. Not anyone else's.

  123. Alisdair: couple of points.
    1: could you provide a link to the poster you saw?
    2: What's a holiday?

  124. @NapoleonK:

    Glasgow's a great city mate, get out there and get stuck in.

  125. Right, siren voice of Mrs SB calling, time for bed... good evening, one and all.

  126. Also, in the city there are probably many people I formerly went to school with who went off to study at Uni, and Glasgow always attracted the most. I suppose I could send out feelers, search social networking sites etc, hang around the student bars (or even the special pubs which are traditionally popular with Highlanders), but I don't really know if I want to. I never really had any strong friends at my school, and I felt alienated, and I was often bullied somewhat. This put me into dperession, ending up in a psychiatric unit, while they went to university and had/are having a great time. Obviously, not all of them, but a few were really awful.

  127. Whatever home is like Nap K don't give up too soon anyway, it takes time to build up a network.

    Don't dismiss the dive bars or the student places yet though, the point of moving is to try different things.

  128. Hi Leni - I've never cared less about an election. Let's choose one neo-liberal free market warmongering cunt because they have a smoother face on the tv debate than than the other two neo-liberal warmongering cunts.

    Who cares?

    I really don't.

    Nice to see LaRit here though.

  129. 10 minutes to may day. Keep the red flag flying here, eh

  130. Jenifera, I don't mean to sound like a Kevin Mckenna article, but if I went into one of the local dives then I will.

    That said, I have never seen so many people with fake tans.

    Chekhov is the only thing that can save me. His works assumed hte basis that we treat each human as humans first, and doctors, criminals, peasants and Tsars second. There are unifying human themes common to us all. So while I may balk at the lifestyle of many around me, that is of secondary importance, the Chekhovian perspective has to be maintained.

  131. Hank

    see my earlier posts - I trust none of them.

  132. Hank.. what colour shoes are you wearing?
    At least you lot in Blighty get a bank holiday for May day... It's a saturday off or nothing here.. But its austerity all round anyways...

  133. Ah I wasn't suggesting one of the real local pubs Nap, there are places round here I would only go into with a regular, just wandering into the wrong place is sometimes a good way to get your head kicked in.

    I really meant that maybe having such rigid ideas of who you wanted to mix with might leave you with few options.

    My social circle is a bit limited at the moment so I do realise that you have a real problem, people keep telling me to join book clubs and then get all upset when I tell them to get lost. ;)

  134. God, I sound like Don Quixote with a laptop.

  135. jenni

    The simple truth is we have to find our own way - painful journey sometimes.

  136. Evening all

    Good to 'see' you Hank!

  137. Leni

    I agree but when you get a bit of hindsight you sometimes can't help spouting off.

    Point taken that we all have our own lessons to learn.

  138. The people's flag is deepest red...


  139. @ chekhov, the poster is on City Road but has now been cleaned up. If you look up on the top right of this (or any other page here) there should be a link to the Untrusted's photo gallery, and that's where I uploaded the photo I took.
    Oh, and holiday? It's an unfamiliar term to me too, but my wife has said she's tell me what it entails.

  140. I was wondering, and I have no doubt it is a naive question, how seriously the polls are to be taken?

    The last time I can remember taking any notice of polls is when Kinnock was in opposition, Labour always seemed to poll a good deal higher than the final result warranted.

    Have the methods changed?

    And yes I am ashamed of ignoring politics and elections for the last however many years it has been.

  141. shaz: just got in after an evening out. cheers.

  142. jenni

    Politics have ignored you too

  143. Leni

    Don't I know it.

    But it is a two way thing (kind of) and I could have at least noticed them ignoring me.

  144. Lovely song Hank.. You know his dad was a Blackpool club singer..?
    Am half tempted to reply with a bit of ballet just to be evil..
    Am a bit drunk to find a good shoe reply so am off to find someting just for fun... hang on...

  145. http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=ohxfsFerE6g

    Kiz - Best I can do.

  146. No need, Kiz. I never thought you were evil. Just really really shallow. Just like I thought the general level of debate on Cif was really really shallow.

    You'll no doubt think that you weren't in the least bit responsible for the shallowness of the debate on Cif, and you'll no doubt be supported by Bru, Swifty, LordS and the other kids wearing armbands in the kiddies pool.

    You were though. Your little Jaffa Cake gang, backed up by Jess and Alan Rusbridger's daughter.

    You ruined Cif between you.

  147. Hank

    I hesitate to address you, but nothing ventured nothing gained.

    I haven't been around Cif for long, and when I first joined it was much the same as it is now.

    Was there ever a golden age?

    What was different and how has it changed?

    And do you honestly think the change is something that should be equally blamed on the contributers and the bosses?

    Just wondering what I have missed here.

  148. Happy May Day everyone

    There,s not much for working people to celebrate and
    things are likely to get worse for a lot of people.
    However if there is solidarity between working people
    from the different strands of the Left then it will
    make the inevitable pain more bearable and hopefully
    give us some building blocks for a better future.The
    more divided working we are the easier it is for
    those with power to screw us all over!

  149. Happy May Day to you, Paul.

    You're absolutely right in all you say. Trouble is that Leftist solidarity fell apart just as soon as the latest Italian shoes and leather handbags turned the heads of our sisters.

  150. Happy May Day Paul.

    People will be united in anger perhaps but if, how, where and against whom they will vent it is the worry.

  151. Hey guys, I've enjoyed it tonight. Good to see you all again. See you in a week or two, mwah mwah (-;

  152. @Hank

    mwah mwah back and make it sooner eh !

  153. @Leni

    Dead right there.Haven,t had a chance to properly
    read your earlier post on Palestine.Will try and
    look at it tomorrow when hopefully i,ll be a bit
    more engaged!

  154. Paul

    Frankie Boyles point about the media ignoring the plight of the Palestinians is a statement - as I see it - against the general failure of the media to address injustice.

    How many reports have we sen about the jobless or those losing their homes here ?

    The media is obssessed with self protection - musn't upset the powers that be. Nobody speaks up for the disempowered.

  155. Fuck the bollocks.

    Here's Eva Cassidy




  156. Hank
    Have you fucked off again ?

  157. BW. You need to explain EC to me. I just don't get it.

  158. Leni?habib?boudican?

    Where,s the nite crew tonite?

  159. Fuck it - here are the Gaylads !!!



  160. hi Paul

    Just trying to get into 'Girl with Dragon Tattoo ' - highly recommended. I am finding it stultifyingly boring.

    Got it cheap in Tesco !

  161. Oh, *Eva Cassidy*.

    Well navro. Seriously, if you buy the sentiment and intent of the songs she covers, and I agree, many don't, I think you'll find she sings them all better than the originals. Which is astonishing for someone whio was basically a undiscovered club singer. When you consider the masterful musicality and controlled emotional intensity she brings, with ease, and complete commitment, you can only wonder why so few with talent make a living out of music while mainstream obsesses over mediocrity.

    If you don't buy the former, then you probably won't get the latter.

    It don't matter.

    Loved our spat about Lou Reed the other week by the way, he is such a cunt but has admittedly made some great records ;-)

    Here's Strawman


    Fucking great words.

  162. Hi Leni

    Got no idea what that is about but sounds like
    one of those wines that is highly recommended but
    ends up tasting like something out of a drain.Not
    to be repeated!

  163. Paul


    Given up on rubbish book - will take it to charity shop.

    In the absence of reading material I shall take me to bed. Habib is noticeable by his absence.

    Nighty night x

  164. Yeah yeah BW, stop being a funny and insightful twat:]

    I actually should have said John Cale.

    Bit of class


  165. Nite Leni and you too habib if you,re lurking!

  166. Tried to post this earlier with a proper link... but what the fuck... anyways.. For hank.. because he is an...

  167. Oh that was total class. Always liked him since I bought Slow Dazzle by accident in the early eighties.

    Like your tracks nav, they're well left field, way more than mine.

    I am an advocate of musical integrity and exploration. And also this:




  168. This comment has been removed by the author.

  169. Even better


    Holy fuck !!!

  170. Yes


    but not the band, thankfully.

    N.B. BW. Good documentary on 4oD ON YouT. called 'All you need is love'. Made in 1975-6.

    Good footage & stuff.

  171. http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=sTnijX0TH-w
    more clash...

  172. http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=74bvQHQps1M
    another one for hank!

  173. Nice, cheers for the heads up nav.

  174. Holy fuck its


  175. This comment has been removed by the author.

  176. And when the *fuck* has this country been more in need of a proper punk rebelion ?




  177. ..or..


  178. immense fun

    as were Laid Back


    Fucking wronguns them... ;=)

  179. This comment has been removed by the author.

  180. Here's some fucked up art rock from the eighties.


    Gorgeous. And kind of cool.

  181. BW. Christ were they just throwing it out to Madness when they made that video?



  182. Nice. Ridiculously hip sound for their time considering they had no budget. Or did they.

    We are nontheless...

  183. Oh right..mm..hope..yeah..mm..right?


  184. Great fun, cheers, ever so gay though. Here's more strident gayness attaching itself to a great song.


    Like a leaf clings to the tree.

    Good cover nonetheless - check EC conversation above.


  185. Mighty Sparrow



  186. Glad I never saw that video in the 80's. Would have confused me more than it has done now. Off to sleeping thing but will make time to give EC a sober appraisal.

    EC meaning not Eric Clapton.

    He's a tit.

  187. Easy now.

    Lord Ktchener will see us off nicely to dawn/sunsets


  188. Happy May Day one and all!

    Hello Hank - nice to see you too ;-)

    "Trouble is that Leftist solidarity fell apart just as soon as the latest Italian shoes and leather handbags turned the heads of our sisters"

    Hey, not all of the sisters' heads were so easily turned! All my handbags are strictly of the twice-stolen variety or charity shop (although I draw a line at Oxfam)and affording, let alone wearing a pair of those Loboutin 'sex worker' shoes is an impossibility.


    ah, thanks for the reply.... love the defaced poster - there's a group on Farcebook dedicated to Vandalising Tory election posters... some choice ones on there....

    "the Guardian's financial woes (losing £100k a day) are in the new Private Eye, which reckons that certain big staff changes are a prelude to charging folk to read online. That'll kill CiF at a stroke"

    All is not well pn the Guardian, for sure.
    The parameters for commenting on CiF are being squeezed .... unless of course you're a rabid right-wing Tory Think Tank volunteer and then anything goes and so the palpable shift to the right continues apace.

    Confirmed on R4 this morning that the Guardian has switched allegeiance to the Lib Dems.... sighs.....

    Right, off to work, new inner tube on me bike and pumped up tyres!