16 September 2010


If you want to know what God thinks of money, just look at the people he gave it to.
-Dorothy Parker


  1. Montana,

    Call that a windmill? THIS is a windmill

  2. I see that BB was moderated at 10.02PM last night, and I got evaporated for addressing Giyus .


    I'm expecting more from you on the HoC Public Accounts Commitee on A4E being paid vast sums for not getting people into work that just isn't fucking there . .

    So very often those reports get slid into the long grass and are never heard of again.

    You might also do a few blasts on BP's DeepWater Horizon use of COREXIT dispersant to hide the oil spill while destroying marine life and poisoning people who live near the coast .

    Thanks in advance .

  3. I just checked it and it's working for me Dave.

    Speaking of windmills, there was a documentary on Dutch TV recently about the Dutch Resistance. In it some of the veterans spoke about the role of windmills in resistance activities.

    Windmills were used to send messages to each other. Dependent on the angle of the sails meant a certain message- German patrol on its way, Dutch resistance needing shelter/safe houses, where ammunition was hidden etc. Apparently the Germans were completely unaware of the windmill usage.

    There's a lovely children's book called The Winged Watchman about two Dutch boys who help the resistance by working the windmill they live beside.

  4. ”…John Paul Jones will be appearing with Dave Rawlings Machine on their UK tour this month. He will be playing mandolin as their special guest…”

    Oh goody. Dave Rawlings, Gillian Welch AND John Paul Jones on stage at the same time. Roll on tomorrow night…

  5. Has anyone seen the front page of the times this morning- Clegg's article. Here's the free introduction:

    Poor must accept cuts says Clegg

    Nick Clegg puts himself on a collision course with his party today by championing radical benefit cuts and arguing that the State must not “compensate the poor for their predicament”. On the eve of the Liberal Democrats’ conference in Liverpool, he warns in an article in The Times that the planned changes will create losers, but urges his party not to forget the bigger liberal goal of getting people back into work. “A fair society is not one in which money is simply transferred by the central State from one group to another,” he writes. “Welfare needs to become an engine of mobility, changing people’s lives for the better, rather than a giant cheque written by the State to compensate the poor for their predicament.”

    What an unspeakable prick.

  6. Wybourne

    Yes, I saw the same bit we can all see before Murdoch holds out an upturned palm for a quid, at which point I figuratively spat in his face and kicked him in the cobblers.

    How about everyone here knocking together an open letter to their (real or imaginary) LibDem MP, detailing why they did not vote for a quisling and Nasty Party collaborator and how they will seek to ensure that said MP is voted out next time.

    We could then put them up on WADDYA - obviously, just for a bit of a lark.

    Oh, will they delete them on the grounds of political ideology?

    Is The Guardian still tangled in the sweaty sheets of the LibDem bed and consequently in a "remove and delete all criticism of how clever and wonderful we were to jump ship" mood?

  7. LOL… Gawd bless you crazy British. A more “vibrant” and excitable populace would have been rampaging through the streets with their AK-74s by now, chucking shoes at their elected reps and burning them in effigy, but here it’s “open letters” and posting them on the Graun’s chat annex for a laff.

    Vive la revolution!

  8. You Tube suggested this for me, after watching the Bird & Fortune sketch (thanks Dave fra France!). Wasn't thinking much of it, but the last two seconds had me spitting tea on the keyboard!

  9. SwiftyBoy

    As I have said plenty of times before, we have shifted seamlessly from the real world to the internet.

    The outrage of the CiFerati trips and stumbles from one article to the next, clamours for a while and then rests contentedly with meerkats and Jaffa Cakes until the signal goes out that Bindel or Bidisha have written something to spit and froth over and it all begins again.

    Why do you think the government can happily plan to do its worst?

    It knows that our response will always be a stern letter to the paper as our public, virtual display of rebellion and a meek acceptance of whatever happens in the real world, from which we have become detached.

    If power was simply composed of words and noise, though, we would be winning hands down every time.

    After all, the millions of people who either post on CiF or watch from the sidelines are achieving something, aren't they, for all their time and effort?

    Our political, banking and big business masters don't either not read any of it at all or simply ignore it, do they?

    That would be so fucking unfair!

  10. PS to Peter Bracken

    I sent you the hundred squid you asked for the other day, in cash, and I am sure everyone else here did the same.

    I cannot wait to hear how well we have done and how you have magically turned our money into even more money.

    Is there anything the internet cannot do?

  11. @Atomboy:

    Ah well, as long as CiF and the Graun are kicking up a jolly old stink, then the hand-wringers’ consciences can be salved, albeit at second hand. “I can’t actually be arsed to do anything concrete or practical about any of it because it’s all a bit removed from me, actually, and actually I am a bit tied up at the minute what with the kids starting school and my hubby-subsidised cake-baking vanity business to run, but! I’ve posted sternly on the Guardian’s website that something must be done, so there we are, I’ve done my fwightfully concerned bit”.

    It would be pitiful if it wasn’t so funny (or vice versa).

  12. Swifty,

    I've said before that the use of the internet for the discussion/debate/argument about politics is of limited use. However I would rather be howling down the internet connection about issues I care about than nothing.

    It's of marginally more use than posting sardonic comments belittling people posting about issues they care about.

    Do you have any solid evidence that people who post are not out there doing something concrete or is it just a hunch?

  13. I agree with both Wybourne and SwiftyBoy on this and, to a small degree, I also agree with myself.

    The problem seems to be that everyone is forever waiting for a moment when everything will become clear and everyone will suddenly agree that the time has finally come.

    Did the TUC actually say something like, "Don't worry, obviously there will be no general strike. We are just making a bit of polite and contrived noise, according to the rules. Nothing to see here, move along"?

    I agree that people should write and use the internet and draw people's attention to what is happening.

    I also think it then becomes an end in itself, which almost aids and abets the politicians into going further because they feel they can safely assume that this is all anyone will do.

    I have said that the government should sponsor and foster internet forums and sites like CiF in order to maintain a politically passive population, which is convinced it is actually operating at the cutting edge of activism.

    The problem is that it is very likely that although there will be riots like the ones over the poll tax, I do not see these stemming from anywhere like here or CiF.

    We have a visible voice which we assume and pretend is loud and noticed.

    It isn't.

    If real power exists and operates above and beyond the playgrounds and circuses of parliaments and senates, it is the invisible and unheard whispers and signals which control events.

    We are like babbling, gibbering children in another room, our prattling filtered out and ignored.

    The internet is the new Tower of Babel.

    Everyone talking and nobody listening or understanding.

  14. #It's of marginally more use than posting sardonic comments belittling people posting about issues they care about.#

    Well, as the recent political analyst from Bruxelles said in response to nasty comments about the Roma, I'd love for some of them to be stuck in a filthy shack for a while and treated like dirt.

    This is presumably not an experience that she has ever had herself (or even seen), what with the high-level tea-making, operas, ballets, champagne suppers in her busy schedule. But the important thing here is that she can show the other Ciferatti that she really, really cares. Next week the chattering morons will all have moved on to another trendy issue, and the Roma will be conveniently forgotten again. And the cycle will repeat itself ad infinitum.

    So I agree with Swifty on this one. Those hypocritcal fuckers should all be purged.

  15. Online commenting certainly has a role, my only concern is that it ends up like a pressure valve - people feeling that their online rants are sufficient political engagement to solve problems, which they clearly aren't. But it does have two useful and important roles I think -

    Providing publicly accessible views and reactions from outside the media. The media is now so tightly involved with Westminster that its essential people have access to actual grassroots views from the peripheries.

    Encouraging people to actually get involved "in the real world" - off the back of Ciffing, debating, whatever, hopefully some people will take more interest in politics, or go on a protest, join campaign groups, unions, write to their MP, etc...

  16. @13th Duke:

    Well, I see Atomboy kind of got in there first before I could post what I was going to say… and I actually do think there are a couple of areas where I reckon the internet could be a valuable medium – for working out arguments to be used in the real world, and for planning action to be undertaken in the real world. It’s good at getting geographically-scattered but similarly-minded people together, at least in a virtual sense, and for building a sense of common purpose. But surely a sense of common purpose is worth fuck all if it doesn’t make the leap from “virtual” to “actual”?

    So… I can’t accept that swanning around proclaiming that, to take an example from CiF (which I was making particular reference to, in light of AB’s previous post), France deporting the Roma is a bad thing is ever going to stop the French deporting the Roma. Frankly, I’m not sure that hopping mob-handed on a ferry to France and building a ring of human steel round the camps is going to stop the French etc either… but still, at least those protesting and building the ring of human steel wouldn’t be taking the safe easy option, blowing hard from the comfort of the office (or easy) chair, they would at least be putting their money where their mouths were, and standing up and being counted.

    Anyway, come on everyone, hands up, since we’re talking about evidence – who round here is “making a difference” in the real world, on their own time?

    As for the sardonic, belittling bit… well, yeah, I’ll plead no contest to that one.

  17. I make an enormous difference, I employ a refugee to clean, another to care for my children and a third to keep my lawns perfectly manicured. In addition, my perfectly crafted articles for on-line, left leaning publications educate and influence those without my social conscience and awareness. I always buy the Big Issue, fair trade coffee and my Christmas Cards are from Oxfam. I recycle, cycle and rarely travel by air, even when visiting my second home in the Loire region.

    So fuck you Swifty.

  18. @Vari:

    "...So fuck you Swifty..."

    You just name the time and place, lovely young miss, I'll be right there.

  19. I am sure that there are plenty of people more deserving of you, your penis and the difference you can make....

  20. I used to have a second home in the Loire but I sold it when the place was invaded by hordes of other English people. It was absolutely horrifying - some of them were even plumbers!

    (I've got a little villa in Soweto now - dirt cheap, no staff problems, no English and the local people are really friendly.)

  21. @Vari:

    ”…I am sure that there are plenty of people more deserving of you, your penis and the difference you can make....”

    Oh I dunno, I’m struggling to think of anyone at the minute. Right, I’m putting you down as a “definite maybe”.

  22. Where's the Major? Trident thread up. Even Blair, his idol, concedes its a status issue, not security.

  23. Jay -- shh he's watching the footsie, and willing it to come down -- 14pts so far today ...

  24. Thauma's link above contains this clue about what type of world we are creating when governments compete to appeal to shady international big business:

    This past summer Erik Prince put Blackwater up for sale and moved to Abu Dhabi, United Arab Emirates. But he doesn't seem to be leaving the shadowy world of security and intelligence. He says he moved to Abu Dhabi because of its "great proximity to potential opportunities across the entire Middle East, and great logistics," adding that it has "a friendly business climate, low to no taxes, free trade and no out of control trial lawyers or labor unions. It's pro-business and opportunity." It also has no extradition treaty with the United States.

    SwiftyBoy asks above:

    Anyway, come on everyone, hands up, since we’re talking about evidence – who round here is “making a difference” in the real world, on their own time?

    I'm afraid, if I told you that, I would have to kill Tony Blair, Her Majesty the Queen, the Pope and half of Riverdance.

    So, Mum's the word, eh, matey boy.

  25. Actually, Duke, I call this a windmill.

    Dave probably won't be able to look at it. I'll bet the French, with their sad, little windmill wannabes, don't want their people seeing what real windmills look like. 403 error, my big toe.

  26. Swifty,

    we could argue forever on the pros,cons and utility of internet political discussion but a platform that allows pure gold like this (from 'regal' on the trident thread):

    the germans attacked britain in 1939 because a labour gov who were in charge at the time,did not want to spend money on protecting britain from attack from abroad,they lived on another planet.

    has got to be worthwhile keeping.

  27. Not sure if I've posted this before, but it could be Clegg's inspiration from 1911.

  28. @Atomboy:

    ”…I'm afraid, if I told you that, I would have to kill Tony Blair, Her Majesty the Queen, the Pope and half of Riverdance...”

    And large swathes of MI5, SIS, GCHQ, DIS and JIC as well, I imagine.

    Rest easy though, old son, I’m no snitch.

  29. Ooh Montana,

    can we play windmill top trumps?

    I will see your Iowa monster and raise you Kinderdijk. A system of 19 windmills built in 1740 to control the flow of the Noord and Lek rivers. And it's a UN world heritage site.

  30. I saw that comment, Duke, the Regal one, possibly the most factually wrongheaded post I've ever seen. It only made a couple of claims - every single one wrong.

  31. This is the killer top trump in the windmill deck!

  32. ”…I'm afraid, if I told you that, I would have to kill Tony Blair, Her Majesty the Queen, the Pope and half of Riverdance...”

    Ah go on, then. Spill the beans. Bit of collateral damage never hurt anyone important.

  33. Duke -- you win, great photo ! We have hundreds in the Cotentin, but only
    one restored and working
    I'm afraid.

    thauma -- thanks for the Blackwater link . the latest comment was --

    The two men claim that the company's owner, Erik Prince, may have murdered or facilitated the murder of individuals who were cooperating with federal authorities investigating the company. The former employee also alleges that Prince "views himself as a Christian crusader tasked with eliminating Muslims and the Islamic faith from the globe," and that Prince's companies "encouraged and rewarded the destruction of Iraqi life."

    No idea if that is true, except it does chime with " no extradition treaty " .

  34. turm -- glad you enjoyed the Bird and Fortune . I've sent it to some bankers too, one very deeply involved in derivatives ... hehe

  35. One of the most incendiary details in the documents is that Blackwater, through Total Intelligence, sought to become the "intel arm" of Monsanto, offering to provide operatives to infiltrate activist groups organizing against the multinational biotech firm.

    Monsanto is one of the favourite targets of the Confédération Paysanne and hundreds more around here . The french spooks (whatever the RG is called now) do the watching quite thoroughly.

  36. So Clegg has laid it squarely on the line.

    Lose your job, fall ill or suffer disability and you don't even qualify for the booby prize. You are simply a 'loser'.

    As a statement of intent it is starkly and frighteningly honest.

  37. Just been on the Roma thread.

    some of the comments can only have been made by 'people' lacking all humanity. I begin to doubt the fact that human kind is only one species. Darwin had it wrong .

  38. frog

    look up ichneumon wasps - very varied lot, using different caterpillars and grubs as hosts.

  39. I went to the Times to see what was on the frontpage, hehe ... and saw a headline " Thousands of dead fish in the Mississipi". Story been running for two weeks apparently. Amazing photos here -- Treehugger.com

    That's not BP's oilspill at work, it surely must be the Corexit the bastards have sprayed to camouflage it ?

    Thanks leni got a good steer at waddya tooo :)

  40. Frog

    those pics of dead fish defy belief.

    I too suspect the chemicals.

  41. "This week's public accounts committee report into the £760m Pathways to Work scheme to get people off incapacity benefit an into jobs provides an alarming vision of life in outsourced Britain,the coalition's dream for the future.

    The private contractors brought in to run the scheme, led by A4e and Reed, "universally failed by considerable margins to meet their contractual targets for helping claimants," the report says. And in a damning indictment of outsourcing: "Theyhave performed worse (in the areas they covered)than Jobcentre Plus areas."
    In other words, the government body that is shedding 4000 jobs, with a further 2000 cuts announced by the coalition in June, is better at the job than the private firms brought in to replace it.

    A4e found work for just 15 percent of participants, well short of its target of 36 percent. Reed did even worse, finding work for just 9 percent. The companies, reported the committee, could not even make a profit from their dire service and had to be paid up front to ease their cash flows.

    Pathways to Work has at least created work for one visually impaired man. The scheme was heavily promoted by the pensions and work secretary for six months in 2005, David Blunkett, who now earns £25,000 to £30,000 as an advisor to....A4e."

    (Private Eye 17-30 September 2010)

  42. Chekhov

    Depressing but predictable reading.I don't know what needs to happen before Governments accept what many have been saying for years.Namely that there is no cheap way of reducing structural unemployment.Governments need to invest in good quality training and childcare as well as making the benefit system more flexible.This way will cost more in the short term but will make substantial savings in the long term.Privatising welfare and offering people badly funded half baked training schemes will probably cost more in the long term as it's tantamount to putting a strip of elastoplast over the problem.

  43. This comment has been removed by the author.

  44. afternoon all

    Please take 30 seconds to vote for Cllr Martin Ford for the Guardian paper's The Green Hero award. The he has been short listed for standing up against the might of the Trump Organisation

    More info here


    Those dead fish pictures are dreadful....god knows what the longer term implications are for the ecosystem there. And for the people who earn their living through the fishing. Does look like it might be the dispersants.

    So A4E and Reed are useless. What a surprise!

  45. I'd like to see Clegg tarred, feathered and drummed out of the LIbDem party at the conference.

  46. Jay
    Encouraging people to actually get involved "in the real world" - off the back of Ciffing, debating, whatever, hopefully some people will take more interest in politics, or go on a protest, join campaign groups, unions, write to their MP, etc...

    Well said Jay that's the point! Yes (and you what I'm going to say next - join the 32,000 people who have joined Labour since the election. Get involved and make Labour the party of working people again. A lot of friends are reporting that people are saying this on the doorstep!

    In England the alternative, the Lib Dems have shown themselves in their true light. But even here in Wales with the apparently more left wing plaid cymru people are turning to Labour - not because of its recent record but because of its history.

  47. chekov- thanks for private eye bit. I didn't realise some was free online, and saw this article on £5BN tax evasion by Vodaphone .

    That Hartnett at HMRC is either a knave or a fool, and I can understand that the staff are enraged.

  48. "join the 32,000 people who have joined Labour since the election"

    You won - i have done already ;)

  49. Despite HMRC’s victories, Hartnett moved the case from his specialists and lawyers – dismissed in recent comments to the FT as “very intelligent people” suffering from “a black and white view of the law” – to a dimmer but more amenable group to negotiate with Vodafone’s head of tax, John Connors, who until 2007 was a senior official at HMRC working closely with Hartnett on handling big business.

    A knave and a fool.

  50. Anybody got the full Clegg article in the Times?

  51. Frog - what, pay Murdoch? You're having a larf.

  52. If anyone is interested all the candidates for the Labour Party Leadership are on Question Time tonight.Could be interesting provided Dimbleby is on form with the questioning.These politicians wriggle like eels at the best of times and in the last series of QT i thought Dimbleby was inclined to go a bit too easy easy on some of the panellists from the political world.

  53. Hmm thauma -- I reckon if we did it and put it up here they might find it sharpish too ... I wonder if someone's mirroring the Slime somewhere well offshore ?

  54. @thauma, frog et al

    The Clegg piece is available on his personal website here.

    (Found via LibDem Voice, which I stumbled on by errr... accident.)

  55. Thanks Peter - not sure I can take reading it now. The extract made me angry enough.

    Frog - aye, you don't want to mess with Murdoch and copyright infringement issues.

  56. PeterJ --- well-sleuthed !

    So 'social mobility' is going to just appear

    Jobs are going to just appear

  57. PeterJ-- maybe you could put it up on waddya ? Your find !

  58. ArecBalrin 16 September 2010 6:53PM

    Can I just say that the report DaveBlokefromUKPlc linked to precisely describes my interaction with A4E. My disability employment advisor at Jobcentre Plus finally managed to sneak an unscheduled meeting with me when I last signed on and I told her about what I've been doing recently: looking for a part-time course to re-train for something I could possibly do self-employed(electrician).

    She asked me what help I was getting with this from A4E and told her "none" and she was shocked: she would help me with it but she can't because A4E has a contract and they are supposed to providing the help now. They're not even providing the basic service Jobcentre Plus were giving me, so how the hell is their contract justified?

  59. AAARRRGGGGGHHHH it make me angry! I voted for the despicable toad on the basis that their manifesto was left of Labour, as was his pre-election spouting-off.

    When they formed a coalition with the Tories, I was unhappy but hoped that the LibDems would, y'know, temper the Tories' overweening desire to fuck over the least privileged of us. I never thought they'd join in with enthusiasm.

    So the Tories are well-known despicable bastards, New Labour are now-proven despicable and duplicitous bastards, and the LibDems are also now-proven despicable and duplicitous bastards - or so I shall think unless they hang Clegg in the conference.

    The Greens are frankly a bit wacky. But given the alternatives will be getting my vote as things stand.

    Anne - I'm sorry, I cannot support Labour until they purge the party of every bastard who voted for the wars and those who supported the privatisation, PFI and draconian anti-civil-rights measures.

    I am a seriously pissed-off voter.

  60. ^^Oh, and let's not forget that Shitdribble started the ATOS medical enquiries.

  61. Montana - The following is a proper windmill. I see it on the horizon every day when I walk Mungo.

    Your contender turns out to be another import (like London Bridge) into the USA......_

    An East Yorkshire Windmill - still working and taller and older than the Iowa fake Exported from Denmark in 1976!

    Five stories high! Skidby wins

    The 4 stories Danish export now at Elk Horn Iowa

  62. Someone or other just 'tweeted' this:

    Am sat watching coverage of the pope's visit on the news and am really hoping it turns into the most elaborate episode of 'to catch a predator' ever....

    Made me laugh!!

  63. Dependency of any kind offends against this unwavering liberal commitment to self-reliance

    That would have done me a lot of good when I was paralysed on 1st April last year. I prefer to pay taxes as insurance to the state rather than premiums to the New Robber Barons of the HealthCos . If the state is inefficient at providing, fix it .

    Latest figs from the US are 45 million in poverty, one in seven .

    It's bread delivery tonite at pub. Last time I went she'd closed early and I had to get her to open up, so I'm off ! XX

  64. Deano -- the private eye story on Hartnett, HMRC and Vodaphone is for you !

  65. Deano,

    I went on many (many) school trips to Skidby Mill!!

    (the rotation was Skidby Mill, Eden Camp, and the Film and Telly one in Bradford!!)

  66. "I'd like to see Clegg tarred, feathered and drummed out of the LIbDem party at the conference

    I'd like to see Clegg hung by a nose ring, with his hands tied behind his back, for a few days..... then tarred, feathered................castrated and then....

    I will be amazed if he doesn't contest the next election from a safe Tory seat. A nasty piece of work.

    What was the source of the Clegg family brass ......White Russian did I read??

  67. I can't decide if Clegg will take the Tory seat option tbh.

    Depending on how long the coalition lasts, I reckon there's a pretty good chance that he'll take the revolving door option instead.

    Let's face it, his 'having a crack' at politics thing's gone better than expected, being deputy PM and all, so he'll probably just fuck off to a directorship in one of the companies he's presently handing the country over to!!

    From his point of view, 'job done', innit!?

  68. James, I agree: can't see him going over to Tories and do see him taking a tasty job at some corp whose interests he has promoted.

    Based on my betting averages, it is now a sure thing that he will go over to the Tories.

  69. James - either way I think we can agree not much chance he'll be on the knock as a Lib in Sheffield at the next election.

    Skidby Mill has just undergone a major renovation so happily it'll still be there on your next visit home.

    How's the house hunting going btw?

  70. Deano - aye, but isn't Sheffield Hallam rather a posh area that might be still inclined to vote for a posh bastard?

  71. I'm not sure if I've linked this website before but it's worth another run out anyway in case anyone missed the up to date analysis.


  72. The visitor counter seems to go faster by the day it don't seem 10 minutes since I watched 100,000 turn over and here we are now on 127k!

    I take pleasure in noting that some days UT gets more comments than WDYWTTA

  73. Thaum,

    haha, I've got a fairly good betting record, unless I put *actual* money on it, and then it tends to go pete tong!

    For the record though, if he doesn't stand as a Tory, I don't think it'll be a principle or incompatability thing, but a financial/mobility one.

    (and, if my mum loses her job, as is looking increasingly likely, because of the public sector cuts, there's a fair chance that I'll be making every effort to ensure that he ends up with actual, proper, physical mobility issues. Fucking turncoat cock-knocker.....)

  74. Thauma:I'm not sure of the exact perameters of the Sheffield Hallam constituency but, yes, you are quite right, most of it is more than likely inhabited by people who shop at Waitrose and dream of the day they get to become either Captain or Lady Captain of the Hallamshire Golf Club!

  75. Deano,

    house hunting officially abandoned, as are any pretensions/hopes that I'm in any kind of position to ever own/find one!!

    Still, it's not the winning, but the taking part that counts, or whatever it is that losers say....


    Will definitely make the short trip over to Skidby next time I'm home, which I hope will be sooner rather than later....

  76. Yes it is thaum but the citizens may be susceptible to rune reading.

    They'll perhaps get the message if every time they try to drive into town they have to get through the burning tyre roadblocks........

    If all the posh cars in Sheffield had a difficult to remove sticker with the enquiry "Clegg Fan?" applied to the windscreen ......it might help the understanding of the rune message sink in....

    I do like an idle daydream you understand.

  77. James, I used to be able to place the horses 1 - 2 - 3 until I actually tried betting on the fuckers. Only tried that a couple of times, as it seemed deadly to the sport of kings.

    Don't think Clegg will stand as a Tory because it would destroy any (supposed) credibility he might have left ... but can easily see him taking up some well-remunerated post in Tory Business World.

    Good luck to your mum; hope she fends the bastards off.

    And it's goodnight from me....

  78. Now I've had a moan, I'm off too...

    Night all!!

  79. and me too

    Night Chekhove my friend. Glad to read that you've been getting work of late.

  80. @ Thauma 20:11

    I am a seriously pissed-off voter.

    I agree. There is no way I will join the New Lab movement.

    Am awaiting QT tonight ! to see what bollocks they spout! they are after all the future !!!

  81. I've just looked at waddaya

    made me sad..as the "house spam" huddle and whine about being bullied, outnumbered (but, in reality: fucked by their inability to do joined up writing, never mind thinking) on the Roma thread..brave Mde Bruxelles 'enjoyed' her time there whilst skewering her opponents...I looked..she seemed to have inadvertently pierced, exactly, one stray dog and a guy collecting for the Salvation Army...

    I'm guessing she had a few of the fascist fucknuts in misty-eyed reverie as she managed to give a back-handed thumbs up to the golden era of the English (British if anyone feels left out)hooliganism.

  82. Why do we believe the bollocks spouted by politicians ?

    In my brief lifespan, it always seems to be the same. Politicians are there to feather there own nests. ( except from a very few shown on the UT previously ) . That amounts to around 650 Oxford/Cambridge graduates to maybe 5 – 10 that actually have a heart.

    Sorry listening to Millipedes Bollocks at the mo

  83. It's difficult to know what to believe these days, what with the information overload that the internet has provided us with but I stumbled across this: make of it what you will.

    (scroll down right hand side to "Joe Rogan&Eddie Bravo {in studio}
    BTW:I'm not a conspiracy theorist "kook".

    I don't believe in conspiracy theories, only conspiracy facts.

    There is plenty of good analysis about the insideous nature of the "Neo-Liberal" ideology, (if it deserves to be called an ideolgy).

    "The Shock Doctrine" by Naomi Klein and "The Economic Hitman" by John Perkins both blow the whistle on the con job that has put us in this mess.

    It is a very complex business but as I've said before, you don't need a Phd in economics to know when you are being shafted!

  84. Monkeyfish

    I haven't looked at the Roma thread on CIF but would i be right in thinking that Mme Bruxelles main gripe was that the deported Roma weren't given a makeover and a goody bag before they were sent on their way? She did after all once suggest that the mentally ill could benefit from getting a new hair style followed by a brisk walk.She's all heart that one !

    @ deano-good to see you posting again.Hope all's well with you.

    Nite all

  85. Question Time - oh dear !


    the Roma thread was very nasty - I looked for Bru's 'fun loving but devastating ' comments. They must have been deleted.

  86. Hi Leni

    Agree with you about QT.Those five were the proverbial shower of shite if ever i saw one.None of them inspired me in any way.The Millibands have clearly got an 'agreement' with each other.Camelot UK style but the Kennedy brothers they certainly ain't.Hope all's well with you.

    Nite :-)

  87. Hello, all.

    Would like to recommend radio 4's "The World Tonight", from 23m00s regarding internet censorship. Sounds like Iceland have got a really good idea.

    Unfortunately there's a tosser on at the end who says that the brave military must be protected above all else, but other voices sound interesting.

    Looks like Iceland are trying to set up alegal system, based on "A collection of the best libel and censorship laws from around the world".

  88. A bit about Roma persecution, earlier on, in that programme, but nothing that hasn't been said, really. Very sad.

  89. Out from the pub at 00.59 .

    WITH my bread .

    Impressed meself too ...

  90. Hi Dave.

    My piece on the Fête de l'Huma is apparently going up on CiF on Sunday. I hope everyone will call in.

    Praise me to the skies or call me a deluded, goose-stepping Stalinist, whatever you like. I just want to avoid the humiliation of six comments, two of which are posted on the wrong thread by accident.

  91. "Question Time" should be re-named "Waste of Time"

    The politicians have been rumbled.
    Just the usual rhetoric "full of sound and fury, signifying nothing".

    A pox on all their houses: you couldn't slide a fag paper between the lot of them.

    How long before we stop falling for this tripe?
    Our so called "democracy" is a sham and this bunch of twats get a free ride to peddle their propaganda at our expense on "Question Time"!

    No wonder the art of satire is dead, you couldn't make this shit up!

  92. Hi Chekhov.

    You didn't like it then? :-)

    On the last question, "Who would you vote off if this were Big Brother?", I was hoping that at least Diane Abbott would say, "David Milliband because he's a revolting, warmongering, careerist lickspittle."

    But no. Ah well.

  93. spike

    i will post on your thread - looking forward to it. Hope you're feeling better.

    Chekhov - I have never seen a more abysmal lot assembled together. Beyond hopeless.

    It looks as though any genuine political choice is dead.

  94. Anyway, goodnight all! May flights of angels etc.

  95. Spike -- I've cogitated a tiny bit on that want of comments thing .

    The ideal CiF piece has to be controversial, or it does end up like Prem Sikka with 39. He's right, it's true, BUT . Nothing more to say .

  96. @Leni

    Thanks. Yes, I'm recovering nicely. Sod's law: you always get ill when you've been putting off an unfeasible amount of work and have to get it finished. I thought I was feeling particularly knackered on Sunday at the Fête, but put it down to the ravages of advancing age. On the plus side, it wasn't that. :-)


  97. Hello Spike: my vote is irrelevant and the powers that be know fine well it is and that's just the way they like it, which is why I won't bother to vote anymore because I reserve my right to abstain from what is in effect a "stitch up"

  98. @Dave

    Well, it's all about French Communists, so that should be quite controversial enough for the average CiF punter these days, who seems to think Cameron is a dangerous lefty.

  99. @chekhov

    I always think if I lived in the UK, I'd have to move somewhere with a decent MP so I could vote with a clear conscience.

  100. Right, I'm off now before someone else engages me in conversation. Bye!

  101. No wonder the art of satire is dead, you couldn't make this shit up!
    I was wrong to make that comment.
    Someone did make this shit up: He was called George Orwell and apart from his journalistic essays, "Animal Farm" and "1984" weren't written as predictions rather than warnings.
    Whatever end of the political spectrum you come from or aspire to, he had a good point to make.

  102. Satire is dead --- Kissinger getting the Nobel peace prize was probably Tom Lehrer .

    A star .

  103. Apparently the lumpenproletariat are the hopeless lowest working class cases who'll never achieve " revolutionary cosciousness" , or summink. The New Proletariat are a heterogenous mass of mostly more but also less skilled people who are still being screwed over , but in a far more sophisticated way than ever before .

    Their parental origins range from the old working class through skilled artisans to all possible parts of the old lower middle to some even of the old upper middle class.

    They are actually in the same boat, faced with Globalisation etcetc .......................

    Replace ' revolutionary consciousness' with ' openness to radical solutions' does rather drag us out of the mid Nineteenth Century .

    In 2010 we do not have the simple 1917 solution of shooting our aristocratic officers off their horses & storming the Winter Palace etc .

    (to be continued ....)

  104. @chekhov

    As I mentioned the other day, I'm reading Orwell's columns from Tribune in bed each night. There's a good one here, touching on some of the same issues as Politics and the English Language.

    I've been playing with a list of modern equivalents of the dead slogans he mentions. Examples include 'drumbeats for war', 'raining white phosphorus', 'magical money tree', 'in the dock at the Hague', 'gold-plated pensions', 'in the crosshairs of US imperialism', 'open-door policy', and - of course - 'ZaNu LieBore'.

    Feel free to add your own. As Orwell says, "The result is a style of writing that bears the same relation to writing real English as doing a jigsaw puzzle bears to painting a picture. It is just a question of fitting together a number of ready-made pieces. Just talk about hydra-headed jack-boots riding roughshod over blood-stained hyenas, and you are all right."

  105. Another good link from Open Culture, via Jason Kottke: a collection of Jane Austen's manuscripts, including full facsimile reproductions. All her work will eventually be collected here.

  106. @PeterJ: thanks for the link to the Orwell article. His prose is right on the button for me.

  107. Just read the Pope's speech, much better than Blair's recent one in Israel. Not as obsequious, but just as vile. Well written, but much more full of believed-in shit:

    Praise to the Royal heritage:

    "Your forefathers' respect for truth and justice, for mercy and charity come to you from a faith that remains a mighty force for good in your kingdom"

    They did torture and burn a lot of Catholics and Protestants along the way.

  108. "Even in comparatively recent times, due to figures like William Wilberforce and David Livingstone, Britain intervened directly to stop the international slave trade."

    While the Vatican was doing what, exactly?

    "Inspired by faith, women like Florence Nightingale served the poor and the sick and set new standards in healthcare that were subsequently copied everywhere."

    I think she might have handed out a condom or two, if she were alive today, but maybe not.

  109. "denied our common humanity to many, especially the Jews, who were thought unfit to live."

    Yeah, your church "from very early times" did a lot about that, didn't they? (note "the" Jews, not Jews.)

  110. Habib

    while some were fighting the slave trade the Vatican was still castrating boys to provide 'heavenly voices' to sing in praise of God.

  111. Oh Leni, Muslims in Somalia still do worse than that. I despair, I really do, but looking at the tv stations and the Guardian, the pontiff seems infallible.

    I don't hate faith, I respect it, but I really hate those who manipulate it.

  112. habib

    i'm with yu there. It is the religious hierarchies and institutions I'm against. The manipulation of faith and the control over the people.

    Nothing to choose between politics and religion really - 'cept that religion invokes God.

    The daily cruelties around the world create an endless list .

  113. Is there a full version of the speech somewhere? R4 were saying the Pope had talked about how the loss of an absolute right and abosloute wrong had diminished society and left it lawless.

  114. Habib

  115. Leni, not what was presented, but:
    "those traditional values and cultural expressions that more aggressive forms of secularism no longer value or even tolerate."

    Homophobia? To name just one.

  116. habib

    very selective wording - ignoring the failings of Britain, British monarchs as well as the Church.

    selective history - mutual flattery.

    failing to mention the many overseas soldiers who fought with Brits against Germany - of several religions other than Christianity. Quite a few atheists and agnostics too. However - why not present it as a 'Christian victory'?

    clinging to the ancient mantra that only Christianity can generate true morality and goodness - supported of course by saintly rulers and leaders.

    All a bit 'hey-ho'.

    What else did we expect ?

    Off to bed. Night night x`

  117. Night night x keep the faith, whatever it is :-)