23 July 2010


Krishna on a Brown Horse - Rameshwar Singh

Man is least himself when he talks in his own person. Give him a mask, and he will tell you the truth.

-Oscar Wilde


  1. morning all. piece up on Israel confuses me a bit - and as I don't feel I have the necessary understanding to contribute there (or the will to read the thread when the usual bunfight starts), wanted to know if others here are better informed.

    The article says:
    Human rights advocates repeatedly warned that a nation capable of meting out such punishing discrimination to another people would eventually turn on itself. And so it has.
    But the examples cited (two Arab citizens ... an Arab member of the Knesset ... a Palestinian man from Jerusalem ...the Israeli children of migrant workers) imply that while this may be 'turning on itself' in terms of citizenship, there is a different sense of 'itself' that excludes the non-Jewish - so it isn't turning 'on itself' in that sense, but still just turning on 'the other'? References to ACRI being 'Arab lovers' also seems a traditional attempt to designate people who sympathise with 'the other' as being 'the other'...

    This to me looks more like 'turning in on itself' than 'turning on itself'. Thoughts?

  2. @Philippa

    I've put some of my thoughts up in that thread. Rachel Shabi is cherry-picking events to fit her pre-determined thesis - shared with Mya Guarnieri's piece the other day - that discrimination against Palestinians in Gaza and the West Bank is expanding into racist discrimination not only against Arabs and other foreigners but also against those who are not Jewish enough. She's implying that it's not now considered enough just to be an Israeli citizen, but that there are extra racist requirements being put in place if you want to be a real Israeli.

    In fact, she's blurring things herself by calling some Israeli citizens 'Arabs' and some 'Palestinians' to suit her purposes, and implying that the ultra-Orthodox Jews represent the mainstream when in fact their racist views are being staunchly opposed by the Israeli state.

    She's failing to make her case fairly spectacularly as far as I can see.

  3. This might be of some small interest to those of you who still post on CiF but are heartily sick to death of having a carefully crafted post deleted simply because it embarrasses one of the CiF pets.

    I remember having a devastating post (he said modestly) deleted from a Geoffrey Alderman thread simply for quoting a previous Alderman piece on CiF that made clear he is a Zionist nutcase who believes Judaism permits the killing of women and children because they are the mothers of potential 'terrorists' and 'terrorists' in embryo. Unbelievable.

    Anyway, I've been posting more and more over at the Indy and 'moderation' i.e censorship, is virtually non-existent (as far as I can make out).

    Comments that wouldn't last a minute on CiF stand, proud and free, wiping a manly tear from...erm, cough...anyway, I posted the following on WADDAYA (the first time I've ever posted there, I think, and certainly the last). My comment has the life-expectancy of a snowball in Hell but here it is:

    "The (no doubt tiny) handful of malcontents who are sick of the arbitrary and unaccountable mod******n on CiF (and who wouldn't be when even to mention it gets you 'mod*****d', sweet irony?) should check out The Indy. The latest cowardice in the face of a bullying c**t should be impetus enough.

    Not only is there an 'edit' function for your comments (something the Grauniad, for all its drooling over 'groovy tech' hasn't managed to sort in 5 years), but mod******n is so light-touch as to be invisible.

    It's what CiF always should have been but never was (although it used to be much more restrained back in the days when @exiledlondoner and I fought in the trenches of the 'I'm Backing Boris' thread.

    And just think: you don't have to mooch around here, sucking up to Jess 'I dunno if we sack people before their six months are up because Personnel are really hard to get a hold of and anyway, that's not my department' and Bella 'The Rise of The Meritocracy' Rusbridger and pretending Peter Bracken is more engaging than a venereal wart, all in the hope that you'll get a coveted 'C' for your gripping exposé of the trade in unpasteurised cheese, S Is For Saint-André--Triple Crème Crime: Think Of The Children.

    The mod******s will doubtless make my point for me and delete this comment. At The Independent, it would stand. You should see the (civilised and well-deserved) roasting I've given that neo-liberal patsy Johann Hari. It wouldn't have lasted for 5 minutes here."

    The only way CiF will ever mend its ways (assuming it's capable of doing so) is if the click-count drops alarmingly. Make it happen or write them off; don't be an 'enabler' as US psycho-babble would put it...

  4. peterj - and that's why i didn't post that thought on the thread, i just don't have the background / knowledge of ulterior motives, what have you...thanks for that. bit of a pity that the thread is now focussing on the rape case (i mean, big thing, but not the entirety of the argument) and not debating that particular point you set out.

    misharialadwani - you're still up on waddya - and thanks for the tip. think cif is probably as much procrastination-opportunity as i can stand at present, but good to have alternatives in case they do actually go bust, hehehehehe.

  5. Sheff / MsChin / PCC

    What's the gen on this around your parts?

  6. misha,

    I enjoyed your comments on the Hari article in the independent this morning especially the Private Eye stuff.

    You may also be interested in Graun in big huge hypocrisy shocker.

  7. Nice posting misharialadwani...

  8. Hah, Duke. And if you think the tech admin is crap now, just wait....

  9. Duke
    - thanks for the sauce ! Good resource ...

  10. thauma/BW - you guys up for the drink with Hank and Monkeyfish in Sheffield next week (friday if I read it correctly) or are you saving it for BW's in September??

  11. Hi guys. I have a wedding on friday, and my mum's 70th on Saturday, so definite no-show from me. Should be a blast. Will keep you posted re: possible september East Midlands leg...

  12. trafigura found guilty by a dutch court of illegally dumping toxic wastes.

  13. deano - unfortunately I have to work next weekend. :-(

  14. Thanks for the kind words, guys and thanks for the link Your Grace. Un-fucking-believable. I actually thought I was incapable of being surprised at further hypocrisy from the Graun but that's just breathtaking.

    I wouldn't be surprised to learn that the GMG had invested in ATOS.

    I'll never forget when my distaste for the odious Matt Seaton turned to outright loathing. It was a James Purnell thread, where Purnell was getting the pasting he so richly deserved and Sat-on kept appearing BTL to chide us for being impolite to Purnell.

    Impolite...Christ...if I could have laid hands on the callous little side-burned spiv, I'd have strung him up, kicked away the chair and slept like a baby afterwards. But Sat-on insisted that we were being 'disrespectful'....words failed (and still fail) me.

    I have high hopes of The New Improved Indy, at least as far as commenting goes: they're shaping up very creditably (compared to CiF).

    BTW, can one not do blockquotes on this blog? It tells me that my HTML code (blockquote)(/blockquote) [but in angled jobbies] is unacceptable. Am I missing something?

  15. BTW, Your Grace, I forgot to thank you for that absolutely cracking David Camewrong video, which I've embedded in a post on my blog. Brilliant stuff.

    I'm surprised you can't embed youtube videos in your posts here as I do on my (wordpress) blog. Perhaps it's just a matter of the settings in the control panel (which I suspect is the case)?

    Then, instead of pasting a link that people have to click on or that they have to copy and paste into their browser, the video you want to share just appears in your comment, ready to thrill or chill or...

    Just a thought...

  16. misha,

    that Cameron clip really is a beauty isn't it? It must have taken the chap/chapess ages to edit it.

    Two particular standouts:

    And we will introduce the guillotine to the poorest families in Britain

    I will oversee this Britain from a distant glass tower where no cunt will be able to get at me

    but all of it is genius.


    I've been trying to find more on the outsourcing decision. I looked at the facebook group and all it said was that the decision was taken yesterday and Unite are meeting about it this afternoon.

    I don't know what the decision was, it didn't say but if Unite are meeting about it, it's probably negative. I'll keep an eye out.

  17. misharialadwani/Duke, could you post a link to the Cameron clip? sounds a hoot

  18. Oh yes, Camerwrong was brilliant. Laugh-out-loud stuff.

    If it's true that GMG are outsourcing their IT, apart from the hypocrisy it's a dreadful decision. Quality will suffer and it will be more expensive in the long run (oh yes, it will).

  19. Speedkermit, I think it's on yesterday's thread.

  20. Duke

    Great 'David Camerwrong' speech with more than a few underlying truths amongst all the 'jest '.

  21. Afternoon all

    Re the CPS decision on the Ian Tomlinson killing - I read the piece over on cif but won't be commenting, it's too serious and a very, very bad day for justice in this country. I had hopes for Keir Starmer but I should have known better. Feel very depressed about it.

    It seems the powers that be now believe we are so moribund and gutless that we'll just have a moan for a while and then forget about it. I really hope they're wrong.

    BTW Yr Grace, that Camerwrong clip was hilarious and boy, do we need something to give us a laugh these days. Some worrying nuggets of truth in it though.

  22. After the Peace Musabi thread on Wednesday, I've been trying to find out what happened at the appeal hearing yesterday. There's nothing anywhere that I can find, not even on the WAR site that produced the original article.

    It seems a bit odd.

  23. @sheff:

    If you want cheering up, have a read of Nicholas Taylor’s latest offering on the Secrets of… dunn dunn dunnnn-n-n-n… Stonehenge.

    A fantastically awful steaming pile of New Age bullshit.

  24. This might be of some small interest to those of you who still post on CiF but are heartily sick to death of having a carefully crafted post deleted simply because it embarrasses one of the CiF pets.

    How many fuckin' names do you need, artfarmer?

    Carefully crafted, my arse. They're just written. You jump up and down like a kindergarten kid saying me, me and piss your pants when no one takes leave of their senses to listen. You don't know the meaning of exchange; faceless shits like you just snipe from the gutless shadows.

    Any fucker can do that. Yet you project it as though it were your messianic duty.

    That self-regarding stench of yours pollutes.

  25. Who is artfarmer? and why are you telling us this PB?

  26. hehehe Swifty...there's no accounting for hippy dipshits! I'm surprised he didn't get in a couple of ley lines and a Druid or two.

  27. More tragedy in the wake of the Iraq war:

    Cancer Rate In Fallujah Worse Than Hiroshima

    The new public health study of the city now all but proves what has long been suspected: that a high proportion of the weaponry used in the assault contained depleted uranium, a radioactive substance used in shells to increase their effectiveness.

    In a study of 711 houses and 4,843 individuals carried out in January and February 2010, authors Chris Busby, Malak Hamdan, Entesar Ariabi and a team of researchers found that the cancer rate had increased fourfold since before the US attack five years ago, and that the forms of cancer in Fallujah are similar to those found among the Hiroshima and Nagasaki atomic bomb survivors, who were exposed to intense fallout radiation.

  28. "That self-regarding stench of yours pollutes."


  29. @Sheff

    I'd be wary of suggesting that any increased cancer rate in Fallujah was caused by depleted uranium contamination. I'd be particularly wary of anyone suggesting that depleted uranium and fallout from the Hiroshima and Nagasaki bombs have anything at all in common.

    There's some good scientific background information on depleted uranium and health in the links here.

  30. Well fuck me, Hank Scorpio, he of oh so fuckin' clever cartoonish name, deigns to surface. And what does the animated dick face deliver for our contemplation? 'Priceless'.

    I'm reeling from that.

  31. Has there been a two-for-one deal on gin in the officers' mess, Brackers?

  32. Misharia - Yep its Disqus I think on the Indy - same as The Telegraph. So you just post away and not much modding in sight. A lot more lefty types seem to be posting on The Telegraph since they switched - although its still full of people to the right of Tebbit most of the time.

    I posted something the other day about Camerons gaffe re us being junior partner to the US in the fight against the Nazi's - just saying that if it had been Brown he would have been slaughtered - and I had a reply along the lines of ''quite right this is a disgrace a British PM saying such a thing - this is what happens when you have socialists running what was once a great country now open to all and sundry and nothing more than a glorified doss house'. Brilliant.

    Deano - so glad to see you around again.

    What's the crack with the drinks in Sheff? Not been able to get on here easily some days and it is going really slow when I can so hard to read down through days of comments if missed some. Who is going and where and when? I am bit ill at the moment but might be better by when it is.

  33. It's next Friday, PCC. Rutland Arms. Be good to see you there.

  34. Hey Hank. Will try to make it. What time?

  35. Might make it myself, Hank - just to set you straight. Mine's a Boddingtons.

  36. TBC, PCC. Sheff?

    You can set me straight whenever you want, Peter, old man. You've got a platform on here, and a big blue "C" to underpin your platitudes on Cif.

    The suggestion that your posts are morally more valid than us cartoonish dicks because they're backed up by your real name and a moody pic of your good self is crap though. Speedkermit demolished it in an exchange on Cif this week with some guy called Tony something (TAFKAchomusic).

    Some of us have employers who don't welcome openness, transparency and a culture of self-criticism.

    Not all of us have trust funds to fall back on when we've finished playing toy soldiers.

  37. What Hank - you mean those employers who give a fuck about the opinions of the real Hank Scorpio posting here? Who ferret on sites likes this because they're paranoid about what Hank - the great Hank - might say?

    And all that bluster of yours. What does it amount to? A mouses's scurry for cover because - you just never know - my three bags full-yes-sir-manager might be snooping.

    Courage such as yours is a trailblazer.

  38. Incidentally, if misha is still looking in and wondering if his thesis of nepotism in the media holds good...


    No wonder Brackers is so touchy about the subject. Much as I admire his well-bred and languid discourses about nothing much at all, I do wonder sometimes whether PB's "C" has more to do with the fact that he has touched the hem of the saintly white suit.

  39. ''Not all of us have trust funds to fall back on when we've finished playing toy soldiers.''

    How true. Someone recently wrote an article for Cif and gave her real name and photo etc and there was apparently some controversy over some of the BTL comments - anyway the upshot was that the writer of the ATL got in trouble at her work. Not good.

    Hank I agree - I don't think people can always reveal themselves online for a number of reasons. One for me is that there is someone out there I don't ever want to know where I am (no not a debt collecter ha ha). There may be a whole host of reasons and someone not revealing their true identity doesn't make their opinions any less valid.

  40. A captain in the British Army at 14, now an equities trader based in France, the son-in-law of Martin Bell...

    Says it all about New Labour really, doesn't it?

    As does the sangfroid, the complacency of the rich and well-connected, who don't need to rely on the goodwill of their employers to keep their heads above water.

    You're an unbelievably condescending twat, Bracken.

    I'll try that last link again...


  41. princess

    Dunno if you already know this but CIF are running a piece from ATOS next week.Left a post about it late last night which i seem to have deleted.Anyways it should be worth a look even if it,s bollocks.Wouldn,t be surprised if it were pre-modded as well.

  42. Hey Paul thanks for the heads up - will check that out. Bet it makes the blood fair boil!

  43. Evening all

    Haven't read through the whole thread, but regarding Peace Musabi's appeal, the Immigration Judge will have probably reserved his/her determination as this is usual in all but the most obvious of cases, so nothing will be known for about three weeks or so - a bit longer if it is a complicated one.

    Re the online anonymity bit, I am not too happy about people knowing my real name because some of my clients - the CPS for one - might not be too happy about some of my leisure-time comments. Although I think I have been pretty even-handed with them in my articles.

    Dr JZ paid me a really nice compliment the other day, though. We deffo don't see eye to eye on immigration and asylum and are often fighting, yet he said that if he were ever in that position he would like to have someone who fights as hard as me on his side. Bless him.

    Anyhoo - it's Friday night, I've got an evening free, a full bottle of vodka, it's not yet dark, and I'm wearing sunglasses.

    Hit it...

  44. Hey BB - go easy on that full bottle of Vodka or you'll be wearing those sunnies all day tomorrow too :)

  45. Flippin eck, Hank

    I thought I had l33t intarwebz research skill3z. I doff my cap, sir.

  46. PCC - I was only saying it to annoy Bitey. I have no intention of drinking more that a couple.

    Of pints.


  47. @BB

    Thanks for the Musabi info. I was just surprised that with all the emphasis on "tomorrow a judge decides about my children", there was nothing at all from her sponsors about what actually happened.

  48. @BB - yeh, Bracken's busted. As is his argument.


  49. Ah, Quentin Letts, to whom you, Hank, doff your well doffed cap.

    Ironies of ironies. The great Hank's authority is...the gossip columnist for the Mail.

    You should google more often; it suits your credentials as the outspoken original you are.

    Hmm, but let me google Hank Scorpio. And what do I find? An animated dick face. Nothing new there, then.

  50. Peter!


    You know, there has always been something about you that I find alluring, even if I don't agree with your politics. But I don't think you do yourself any favours sometimes, I really don't.

  51. That was addressed to PeterB by the way, not PeterJ - not that I don't find PeterJ alluring too! :o)


    The judge will have pretty much made up his/her mind during the hearing, but because Immigration and Asylum Law is fraught with pitfalls and booby-traps, they have to make sure that their written determination covers every aspect of the law absolutely spot on, or it will be challenged. That is why it takes so long.

  52. That's it? A non-denial denial?

    You're credibility's shot to pieces.

    Is Martin Bell your (ex) father-in-law? Did you put your name forward as a prospective New Labour PPC back in 1999?

    How old were you when you were promoted to captain in the Army?

    Have you got any friends or contacts at the Guardian?

    It's very New Labour to trade on your contacts, to happily work in the finance sector, and, when all else fails, to make a half-arsed attempt at smearing your critics.

    But, above all, it's very New Labour, to be a fucking empty vessel.

    And you're gonna straighten me out are you?

    You haven't got a clue.

  53. "You're credibility" - fie on my comprehensive school education.

  54. Tsk tsk Hank.

    At least I went to grammar school...

    *runs away*

  55. You're floundering, Hank: I can smell it.

    Why is my credibility shot to pieces? What does it matter when I was promoted to Captain (do you you think I have have influence there, too?). No one knows me from Adam at the Guardian. And how might working in France possibly constitute a 'trade' on my Labour party background?

    Meanwhile, who the fuck are you? Or is your 'vessel' too precious to sail in a half-rough sea. Course it is. Well squat behind your comfort blanket: anonymity suits you.

    And what are you on about, BB, with 'honestly'? What did I say that upset your manicured poise?

  56. A very good evenin' to all.

    Sheff, I think PeterJ is right, just because cancer and birth defect rates are high in Falluja, it doesn't necessarily follow that it's because of the one or two depleted uranium shells that were used...

    No, since the people of Falluja have since become so affluent and aspirational, it surely has more to do with their increased use of the following:

    oral sex,
    vitamin E,
    sausages and burgers,
    hair dye,
    sun cream,
    pringles, Hula Hoops and Prince charles organic crisps,
    talcum powder,
    mobile phones,
    red meat,
    tooth whitener,
    chocolates and bagged snacks.

    (dubious) source.

  57. PeterB

    I was only commenting on your determination, which as far as I can remember has been from day one, not to rub along with people either on CiF or here, but rather to pontificate from on high and to shoot down in ad hom flames anyone who challenges you.

    There's no need.


  58. Or "You catch more flies with honey than with vinegar" might be another way of putting it, n'est ce pas?

  59. Braken, you old tease, have you been engaging in cider, trading insults that way...? Wouldn't catch me or Hank doing that...

  60. hey heyhabib!

    How ya doing? Hope you are feeling better xx

  61. @habib

    I'm not implying that whatever increases there have been in cancer rates aren't due to depleted uranium. I'm just saying that I know what depleted uranium actually is, and what health effects it might have, and I'm dubious about it.

    I'm also saying that anyone comparing depleted uranium with Hiroshima fallout simply doesn't know what depleted uranium is, or what the atomic bomb fallout was either.

  62. @BB

    Thanks again for the info - I'll keep an eye out for the appeal verdict when it eventually comes through.

  63. Your credibility is shot to pieces, bro, because we're not big fans of New Labour around here. Or of nepotism in any of its guises, but especially when it's practised by those who claim to be egalitarian liberals.

    Much as I admire your elegant prose, it's basically empty, vacuous, content-free. Like many of the regulars on Cif, especially those who've been honoured with a "C", you haven't got an original thought in your shiny head, and the only time you get roused to anger is when you are attacked personally.

    You, and people like you, the blase and complacent useful idiots, "pollute" Cif because you have nothing to say and all the time in the world to say it.

    It's a measure of your integrity that you ventured above the line to criticise "the Muslims". A real crowd-pleaser that one.

    Just as it was a real crowd-pleaser for New Labour to "reach out" to the Muslims when you were putting yourself forward as a PPC for New Labour.

    No doubt you said the right things at the interview.

    People like you always do.

    I don't need to worry about "floundering".

    Unlike you, I have some integrity.

  64. Oh and how the fuck can anyone squat behind a comfort blanket?

    Your Nanny wasn't Mary Poppins, was she?

  65. Well I have to scoot, now - literally a plane to catch. But it's been interesting. Not least because Hank, who can't even bring himself to acknowledge his namesake mother and father, scurries around like a famished rat among Google's dustbins unearthing supposed titbits about others.

    Where's the dignity gone?

  66. Oh, and kisses to you, too, BB. You know I love you, really...

  67. Just reading the BNP thread and FreemanMoxy and MiddleEnglandLefty, from 5pm onwards this afternoon, have been an amazing double act

    BNP Sockpuppet posts:
    MiddleEnglandLefty muslim population UK 2001 1.5 million 2010 2.4 million

    MEL posts:

    Partick Thistle 1 Stirling Albion 0


  68. Oh and is Marin Bell your (ex) father in law or not?

    You're seriously trying to claim that the little media bubble in which Martin Bell, Melissa Bell, Alan Rusbridger and Jessica Reed operate has never taken you in?

    As for working in France, huh? It's the fact that you were an equity trader when you were a NuLab wannabe that's the issue for me.

    If you don't understand why working in the financial sector, or being a captain in the Army at a young age, or having so many contacts with the liberal media elite, and, with all that, being a NL PPC, just confirms what I find so objectionable and disgusting about New Labour and the Guardian then all my criticisms have been vindicated.

    I got banned from the Guardian long ago, Bracken. As did Misha, who you took such objection too earlier.

    We were both banned long before you showed up.

    It's a measure of how disinfected and anodyne the site is now that you get to peddle your bullshit unchallenged, and get to post above the line.

    In the country of the bland, the one-eyed man is king.

  69. Hank,

    my father in law is a retired builder.

    Even though I can't hammer a nail into wood I'm that useless, do you think he would be able to put me forward for the presenting job on DIY SOS or Grand Designs?

    I can see a whole new career ahead of me now.

    Nepotism- it's the new meritocracy.

  70. Interesting that you choose to depict me as a famished rat, Bracken.

    You've not addressed a single point I've put to you, and then dismissed me with a gambit Goebbels would have enjoyed.

  71. BB,

    I think MEL has that slightly wrong. Everyone in Scotland knows that Partick Thistle's full title is Partick Thistle Nil

  72. Laughable innit, Duke? Bracken is the epitome of New Labour. A fucking non-resident equity trader
    with an airbrushed photo, a private education, impeccable liberal connections and a good war.

    It's Brideshead Revisited Revisited.

  73. "I'm also saying that anyone comparing depleted uranium with Hiroshima fallout simply doesn't know what depleted uranium is, or what the atomic bomb fallout was either."

    I'm sure that's important, PeterJ, especially if someone makes dodgy scientific claims. I think, however, that there is a comparison to be made when weapons cause death and deformity for generations afterwards...

    ...long after the war and the "justifiable" use of weaponry in that war. I'm sure the use of cluster bombs and landmines are legitimised in times of war, too.

  74. Hiya BB, I'll be okay, thanks for asking (sorry got distracted). Actually I'll leave you in peace, you may want to swoon after the recent proclamation of love you received... or throw up.

  75. @habib

    The Hiroshima and Nagasaki bombs did not cause death and deformity for generations. As you might expect, there have been very, very extensive studies of this.

    And it really is important to get scientific claims right, unless your only aim is propaganda.

  76. Hank,

    if we ever meet up, I owe you a pint of whatever you fancy. That was one of the finest stitch ups I've seen.

    On Graun news. Apparently the outsourcing is going ahead and the Unite chapel at the Graun have begun a campaign. Here's the open letter from the chapel:

    "Our staff are overwhelmingly opposed to this adventurist initiative. Nine hundred of us signed a petition to show that opposition. As an organisation we are rightly proud of our inclusive initiatives to involve staff in determining the line of the paper for the general election. But our staff are ignored when it comes to outsourcing. Apparently we believe our editorial staff should have a say in our line on the running of the country, but they are denied a say in the running of their own organisation."
    It adds: "Outsourcing means offshoring. Outsourcing means redundancy. TUPE means getting somebody else to do the dirty work of making staff redundant. A recent straw poll of staff affected by outsourcing showed next to nobody would transfer to any new outsourcer. All the knowledge, skills and commitment of current staff will be lost one way or another. This is, of course, one of the major risk factors for any outsourcing initiative.
    "Even those of an alternative tradition like the Murdoch empire have not outsourced IT in the extensive way that our management is trying to do."
    It concludes: "The collaborative approach taken by Editorial management and the NUJ should be repeated by Commercial management and UNITE. We respectfully ask those who have the responsibility for deciding how The Guardian should operate in the future to respond in the spirit and tradition that CP Scott would expect of this special organisation."

    The key for me is that even Murdoch's evil empire hasn't outsourced the way the Graun management are planning.

  77. Evening

    hmmmm...a bit of shouting and willy waving going on...come on chaps why don't you zip up and have a pint.

    Re next Friday....Rutland Arms in Sheffield. Anytime from 4pm on. If it's a pleasant afternoon in the garden as per.

    Princess, MSC, Deano, and anybody else who can make it - it would be great if you come.


    Just going on the report on countercurrents re Falluja - do have concerns about depleted uranium and its effects - and something must account for a fourfold rise in cancer. Any ideas if not DU?

    Just spent the last couple of hours watching Spielberg's, Munich - an exercise in the futility of violence. Good film.

  78. Ho Ho. On fire tonight Hank. Now that the skeletons are all out of the closet, the inexorable rise of PB makes perfect sense.

    "Well I have to scoot, now - literally a plane to catch."

    You organising a coup old thing? Burkina Faso perhaps? Sierra Leone? You'll forgive me for inferring there's something of the Mark Thatcher about you...

  79. BB,

    that comment and the thread underneath it is priceless. Off to the pub, have a good evening all.

    Still chuckling about Hank's fine work....

  80. Speedkermit,

    "Well I have to scoot, now - literally a plane to catch."

    You organising a coup old thing? Burkina Faso perhaps? Sierra Leone? You'll forgive me for inferring there's something of the Mark Thatcher about you...

    Fuck me that was funny. With this patter going on I may not make the pub.

  81. speedK

    Are you coming to the Rutland on Friday? -

  82. Well i think that was Game,Set and Match to Mr Scorpio!

    Just out of interest Hank how long have you been aware of all that?

  83. Stay in and open a bottle Your Grace - it's cheaper! and the company's not that bad... although I shall probably slope off and watch another film.

  84. @Sheff

    If the Fallujah figures are right, then it needs investigation. I don't know if they're right, or what methodology the reporters used - it does look as though they had some problems in gathering the data - although I'll see if I can get to the actual published paper to find out.

    But depleted uranium is just a heavy metal, like lead or tungsten. It's not particularly radioactive, although it is poisonous like lead is. Studies show health effects only in high concentrations under particular and uncommon biological circumstances, although they continue. There's no evidence of teratogenic effects either.

    The association with Hiroshima and Nagasaki is just scare tactics to associate depleted uranium with scary things that killed a lot of people. They were actually very 'clean' bombs by later standards, with few fallout effects and few health consequences after the first weeks.

  85. Interesting that you choose to depict me as a famished rat, Bracken.

    He's a poor man's Will Self, Hank - likes playing with language but hasn't quite got how to do it effectively, so ends up sounding like a pompous prat. Won't talk to me, probably 'cos I'm just a silly old bag who doesn't know how to ask questions apparently.

  86. Peterj

    I just don't know enough about it but I understand that when DU shells explode they create a dust that is carcinogenic when breathed in.

  87. I'll have a pint of the young Rosalind Russell please, Duke.

    Fucking laughable, speedkermit. You'll have noted my nod to your exchange with TonyRoss(?) earlier in the week.

    Cif and other internet fora owe a lot to insight from those who actually know what's going on on the ground. I don't agree with everything you have to say on police/civil liberties issues but at least I know it's informed comment.

    Same is true when I when I comment on my own area of expertise. And there's not a fucking hope in hell that I'll do so using my own name.

    Bracken doesn't have to worry about that because he's minted. And he's well-connected.

    So minted and well-connected that he's unable to conceive that other people might actually need their job.


  88. Sheffpixie, you know what? I just might. I'll be the one wearing the stab-vest.

    4pm might be a bit early for me though. Sounds like it might already be messy when I get there, unless you're all supernaturally good drinkers.

  89. @Sheff

    Only up to a point. There's a summary of WHO information here, including the results of research from bomb and artillery target sites in Kosovo.

  90. Oh - A History of the world in a hundred objects are doing the Warren cup....very naughty...

  91. @Paul - wasn't aware of any of it until tonight. I'm not interested enough in Bracken to make a case against him. He came on here all guns blazing, shouting the odds, and I fancied an argument so...

  92. speedy

    What time can you get there? I'll try and keep everyone reasonably sober until you get there. It'd be really good if you came. we're actually quite good company.

  93. PeterJ, had a think and if it was just a case of you or I being right, it wouldn't matter, but your statement:

    "The Hiroshima and Nagasaki bombs did not cause death and deformity for generations. As you might expect, there have been very, very extensive studies of this."

    really made me think if I had read the wrong reports over the last 20 odd years. So I'll do some research and come back to agree, or disagree in a couple of days.

  94. Hello everyone, is anyone from Tyneside planning on pitching up for the "bunfight" in Sheffield?
    If so, could I cadge a ride?
    I'm a bit strapped for dosh right now, so it's touch and go whether I can make it or not.

  95. @habib

    No problem. I'll do some background re-reading too.

  96. chekhov

    My floor, or the hammock on the balcony are both available if you need them.

  97. @Sheff: "I'll try and keep everyone reasonably sober until you get there."
    Good luck with that Sheff:o)!

  98. "I'll be the one wearing the stab-vest."

    Yeh, I've tried that one before to explain away the weight gain.

    @chekhov - have a word with monkeyfish. He might be driving down from your neck of the woods.

  99. Thanks Sheff. Hope I can make it.

  100. "Fucking laughable, speedkermit. You'll have noted my nod to your exchange with TonyRoss(?) earlier in the week."

    Wot, you mean Weathervane Tony? One day he decides to reveal his online identity to the world on the basis of some throwaway comment by Martin Rowson, the next he's flipped the other way on the basis of a 20 second Google search that a drugged child could perform. The interwebz are a stalker's paradise, and he needed to be told. How the fuck did PB find this place for example. How did I?

    And you're right - revealing one's identity is a luxury of the very rich. I would add to that the very unemployable - neither have anything to lose and infinite reserves of time on their hands. The only people who don't fall into either of these categories are those who have such bland opinions that they couldn't offend a nun in a sex-shop.

  101. Feck

    Why do you all live ninety twelve hundred miles away from here?!

    Crawley Mela starts next Friday so got to be here to help out.

    When's the East Midland's do planned for? I am stuffed for weekends of 5th Sep (coming back from France) and 19th-ish (friends over, underwold gig etc.)

  102. Hello folks.


    Forgemasters - yep, heard about it first thing yesterday. Scandalous -that Cook bloke is unbelievable. Nice work by my MP, who read out the email to the Commons.

    sheff, princess, hank and others - I have to work next Friday so will get to the pub early evening, I expect. I will definitely be sober so able to spot a stab-vest.

    Now going to look at the BNP thread since it's been so highly recommended.

  103. @Hank; thanks for the tip. How do I get hold of "Monkeyfish"?
    We have met before but I didn't get any contact details from him.

  104. BB

    'Why do you all live ninety twelve hundred miles away from here?!'

    'cos it's better up north, of course.

  105. Sheffpixie:

    What time can you get there? I'll try and keep everyone reasonably sober until you get there. It'd be really good if you came. we're actually quite good company.

    Pleeease don't hold back the lubricants on my account, i'll catch up. I'll neck a couple of antibiotics on the way out of the house, that'll get me on an even keel.

    BB: Maybe we could do a video conference?

  106. @speedy

    I wouldn't call myself very rich, although I may be currently unemployable and/or bland...

    Although really, I've just been online for so long as myself - more than 25 years, FFS! - that it would feel weird to be anyone else. Anyone's free to stalk away until their eyes bubble.

  107. "I would add to that the very unemployable - neither have anything to lose and infinite reserves of time on their hands. The only people who don't fall into either of these categories are those who have such bland opinions that they couldn't offend a nun in a sex-shop."

    Hiya Speedy, my name's Habib, agree with everything except the time thing and (really) could YOU offend a nun in a sex shop?

  108. Filthy habit, that....


    Thangyouverrrmuch, I'm here all week...

  109. Ha ha BB,
    Full name: Mohammad Habib Ullah Randawar Bin Places Bin Hammered.
    So there!

  110. PeterJ:

    Although really, I've just been online for so long as myself - more than 25 years, FFS! - that it would feel weird to be anyone else. Anyone's free to stalk away until their eyes bubble.

    Don't be disheartened. I'm a firm believer that there's a stalker out there for everyone. You just haven't found your particular fruitloop. I was thinking of setting up a website (to bring people closer together than they are totally confortable with): 'Freaks Reunited' perhaps.

  111. @Sheff:BTW regarding your earlier post about "Artfarmer"; I could be wrong but I had a suspicion that "Artfarmer" and "Misahadalawi" were a couple of aliases of "Monkeyfish"
    Like I said, I could be wrong but the prose style sort of matched if you get my drift.

  112. "Hiya Speedy, my name's Habib, agree with everything except the time thing and (really) could YOU offend a nun in a sex shop?"

    Strangely enough, the opportunity has never arisen.

  113. @BB: yep, we don't have much money but all the fun is north of Watford Gap!

  114. This comment has been removed by the author.

  115. @Hank: thanks, you can delete now!

  116. Too late! I've seen it now!

    I will start being MF's stalker!

    Need to read a certain ex-pat's back catalogue to get it right though....

  117. This comment has been removed by the author.

  118. damnit BB you got me listening to dire straits....

    ooh yeah

  119. Excellent, Philippa!

    My fave film of all time is Local Hero, and the Knopfler soundtrack in that still gives me goosebumps after all these years...

  120. which, due to first gig issues, leads inexoraby to this....

  121. Oooh.

    Now that choon reminds me of the first "serious" boyfriend I had. I think it lasted two weeks...

    I won't post a link from my first proper gig, though, because it was Motorhead at the Lyceum Ballroom in 1979.

    And a bloke at the front had to be carried out by paramedics because he was so close to the amps at the front that one of his ears started to bleed.

  122. Soz, I meant Layla, not speedy's choon.

    Although that one is lovely, Speedy. Hadn't heard it before...

  123. I won't post a link from my first proper gig, though, because it was Motorhead at the Lyceum Ballroom in 1979. And a bloke at the front had to be carried out by paramedics because he was so close to the amps at the front that one of his ears started to bleed.

    Aural stigmata from close proximity to the Warty Rock Nazarene. It's a sign!

  124. now, after that (12th birthday treat), my first proper gig involved this

  125. Oh FFS, Philippa. Like you've never listened to Dire straits before.

    Woo woo - Dire Straits, Radio 4, woo woo, bland cuddly lesbians, woo woo, my dad's a vicar and I've got a sinecure on Cif, woo woo!!

    "damnit BB you got me listening to dire straits...."

  126. Hehehehe!

    When I look back now, god knows what possessed me to like Motorhead. Lemmy is always good for a laugh though.

    Much prefered him in Hawkwind.

    Masters of the Universe

    At least you had some chance of understanding what the fuck he was singing about...

  127. Local Hero?

    Seriously? Fuck off. You need to be a seriously pretentious middle class leftie to claim Local Hero as your favourite film.

  128. Now shut the fuck up and post some choons instead of making us do all the hard work.

    Bleedin civil servants. Clock off at 5.00pm and think that's the end of their working day...


  129. ooh, but this is better!

  130. Or you need to be a half-scot who loves to see the way in which the inhabitants of a small scottish village get the better of a smart-arsed corporate yank...

  131. well, i'm not a lesbian and my dad's not a vicar, but...

  132. You do listen to radio four though, Philippa.

    Admit it.


  133. Ahem. My first proper gig featured this.

    Plus Barclay James Harvest. But I've forgotten all their stuff.

  134. "Not useful, Hank. :("

    Sorry, BB. We should all ponce about claiming that shit films are good and worthwhile because Philip French said they were.

    I like Phillippa an' all, she's got a very nice writing style, but she ain't got a fucking clue about music.

    FWIW, she might not have a fucking clue about film or literature either. I await her opinions with bated breath.

  135. indeed, BB, am busted on that one...

  136. Nice one, Peter.

    I can't remember what Barclay James Harvest played either. Will have to go and look now.

  137. come one, hank, don't you have any happy childhood memory of any dire straits song? not one? wheedle wheedle....

    (an i clearly don't have a fucking clue about music or film or literatire, just to save you the effort)

    night all

  138. S'cuse me, Mr Scorpio, but I don't like Local Hero cos Philippa said so. I like it because it is fucking funny, especially if you know the scottish small-town mentality.

    Anyway, who died and made you Barry Norman?

  139. Enjoy your Sheffield meet up folks. Enjoy this weekend too.

  140. Coming back to BJH - I think I remember their single "Rock n Roll Star" if it's the one that goes

    "So you wanna be a rock n roll star
    "You wanna make it on your own
    "Write a song so everyone will sing along.."

    But it might not be.

  141. Apparently Dire Straits are forming a supergroup with Chris Rea. They're going to be called Dire Rea etc etc.

  142. Philip French liked Local Hero?

  143. The Daily Mail has an 'interesting' morality tale. (yes I read it to see what the enemy are thinking). All unemployed people are expected to go their local roundabout/traffic junction and spend all day holding up a placard saying 'give me a job' based on the story of one such person who did it and got offered a job.

    So, on your morning drive/bus ride to work, if the Mailers have your way, expect to see unemployed people with placards at every roundabout and traffic junction.

    Utter bollocks

  144. Nice one speedy

    I've always liked that joke... :p

  145. "well, I'm not a lesbian and my dad's not a vicar but..."

    Really, PB? I thought that was on the record and genuine. My apologies if I've misrepresented you.

    "Anyway who died and made you Barry Norman?"

    Barry Norman. And Mrs Barry Norman.

  146. Local Hero is a shit film though.

    @NapK - you're welcome in Sheffield next Friday.

  147. ""Anyway who died and made you Barry Norman?"

    Barry Norman. And Mrs Barry Norman"

    Heheheheh! :D

    Nutter. xx

  148. Local Hero is a shit film though


  149. One of the first tunes I ever remember hearing..aint misbehavin

  150. "They're going to be called Dire Rea..."

    The hours must fly by at the Nick. No wonder they spend most of their time fitting people up.

  151. @BB: yes "So you wanna be a rock and roll star" was a BJH song. I've got the original vinyl up in the attic and it's bugging me to remember what the album was called!
    The track that I remember was "suicide"and it was pretty grim.

  152. @BB - Local Hero is one of those films that liberal people who don't watch many films and don't really understand the history of film like. It's a bland, feelgood film. It's not interesting in or of itself, the production values are pedestrian and the storyline is trite. It has Burt Lancaster descending as an all-American saviour of a poor working class community, and Burt suckers so many liberal-lefites into thinking that this is a story they should feel good about.

    What happens after Burt leaves?

    The local community gets fucked.

    It's a cracking film for diehard softhearted liberals who voted for the ConDems. Nothing more gratifying than to see a few cuddly working class blanks enjoy their bread and dripping while they queue for non-union jobs.

    Who on here, incidentally, voted for the Liberals, and are now kicking themselves because the Libs weren't all they pretended to be?

  153. Just remembered one BJH song they played at that first gig. It's here.

  154. "Local Hero" is a film that tells you what to feel, rather than one that makes you think. Not a bad thing, if you can't be bothered at the time you watch it. Most films are like that, really.

    Anyway some people have the prettiest eyes.

  155. Thanks for that, Barry.

    I will try and remember that next time I watch it.

    What happens after Burt leaves? The local community, instead of being bought up and destroyed to set up an oil refinery, gets investment to open a marine science centre combined with an astronomy observatory of international calibre, giving all the locals - including the punk on his motorbike - the chance of a job.

    Except the saviour is not Burt Lancaster - Happer - but Fraser MacKay... Ben, the old geezer who lives in a driftwood hut on the beach because he owns the beach and won't sell to Happer unless he builds the marine centre and observatory.

    Meanwhile Macintyre's life has been changed irrevocably. He has metamorphosed from the asshole oil conglomerate executive who buys up chunks of Mexico by telex to someone who has understood that there is more to life than a Porsche and a chunk of prime Houston real estate.

    As well as understanding that the Soviets are a pretty decent bunch too...

    Still - each to his own, eh?

    What's your favourite film?

  156. Oof. Nearly 12.30. Too knackered.

    I will have to take the piss out of your choice of favourite film in the morning :o)

    Night night all xx

  157. "Who on here, incidentally, voted for the liberals, and now are kicking themselves because the Libs weren't all they pretended to be?"
    I'll own up to being one of those, Hank but in my defense I knew it didn't matter much who I voted for; the status quo would prevail.
    I knew fine well that whatever box I ticked wouldn't make a blind bit of difference to the general carry on.
    Our so called "democracy" is a scam and it is ethically on the same level as the Mafia protection racket.
    The whole bloody sham is a con job but as long as the majority are convinced to swallow it then it will continue.

  158. My favourite film, BB?

    Glad you asked.

    Who's Afraid of Virginia Woolf?
    Ace in the Hole
    Taxi Driver
    Bringing Up Baby
    The Godfather I and II (not III!)
    His Girl Friday
    Gregory's Girl
    Apocalypse Now
    Paths of Glory

    That's my current top 10. Changes from week to week. Some come and some go. But all of them bear watching more than once.

    I look forward to you taking the piss, BB (-;

  159. I've got admiration for Kirk and Cary, too. Gotta find you a Kirk clip, Hank.

  160. Ah Kirk, habib...

    Paths of Glory
    Ace in the Hole
    The Bad and the Beautiful
    The Vikings
    Lust for Life
    Seven Days in May
    Gunfight at the OK Corral

    I fucking lurve Kirk (-;

  161. Heh, that's brilliant, habib!

  162. @Hank: "Who's Afraid of Virginia Woolf"
    Now you are talking! Pure class; Richard Burton and liz Taylor at their very best.
    It's a hard task to translate a stageplay into a movie but that is one of the few that was brilliantly done.
    George Seagle and his partner "Honey" were equally good value.
    Top notch, that movie.

  163. checkhov, have you seen "Night of the Iguana"?

  164. Spartacus can still make me cry.

    The Bad and The Beautiful is a horrible film to watch, because it reminds you of too many real people, but you can't take your eyes off it.

  165. Night of the Iguana?
    Richard Burton is my hero!

  166. @chekhov - yup, but George Segal and Sandy Dennis are just props in that film. Liz Taylor got a best actress Oscar, and Burton was nominated for best actor.

    Taylor, for my money, wasn't a great actress.

    Burton could have been whatever he wanted, if only he hadn't been greedy and needy. He made this film the same year as he made The Spy Who Came In From The Cold.

    Helluva shame that he went on to make Where Eagles Dare, Absolution etc....

  167. @Habib - "Night of the Iguana" isn't a good film.

    "Night of the Hunter" is better. Dark as fuck. The only film that Charles Laughton directed incidentally.

  168. @Hank: Melvyn Bragg's biography of Richard Burton doesn't give the impression of him him "selling out" to Hollywood.
    According to Bragg he turned down a lot of contracts in favour of performing on stage at the "Old Vic".
    Let's face it there are plenty of class actors who have done some crud in their time.

  169. And even more incidentally....

    ...Night of the Iguana was filmed in Puerto Vallarta, Mexico. When it was filmed, Puerto Vallarta was a one-horse town, but as the filming went on for nine months, and as Burton and Taylor had a caravan of reporters and photographers trailing them, Puerto Vallarta became a settlement and then a resort.

    Burton and Taylor bought a house in the hills overlooking Puerto Vallarta. The house is now a BnB with rooms named for the films that each of them won Oscars in.

    The BnB is run by Burton and Taylor's old housekeeper, and she's a sweet old lady who will give you a guided tour every Tuesday morning.

    I was there in 1999 with my girlfriend and we recreated the pose that Burton and Taylor initiated in the room looking over the bay.

    I've actually stood on the same patch of ground that Burton did, and sad as that may seem, I'm irrationally happy to have done so.

  170. @chekhov - I've read Bragg's biography of Burton. His view, as I recall, is that Burton was an artist with integrity until he met Taylor, after which he got sucked into the Hollywood lifestyle, the diamonds, the Rolls Royces, the houses, and eventually the tax exile in Switzerland.

    Burton made some great films before 1967. Difficult to think of any good films he made after 1967....