03 November 2010



  1. Okay, so I'm cheating a bit today. Sums up my mood right now. Not entirely sure why -- I don't think it would have made much difference if the Democrats had done better. At least Sharron Angle & Christine "Not a Witch" O'Donnell lost.

    Even at state and local level, things were fairly bleak. Iowa's most assholean governer ever - Terry Branstad -- was elected again after having been out of office for 11 years. My evil, xenophobic dickhead of a congressman was soundly re-elected.

    I think the only people I voted for who won were the incumbant State Attorney General, one candidate for county supervisor, and three district court judges that I voted "yes" for have retained their seats.

    Clearly, I am out of step with the Zeitgeist of American politics.

  2. Governor and incumbent, even.

    *Sigh* I can't even spell any more.

  3. Deleted my post from last night due to the FT not allowing copy of their copyright to be freely distributed !!
    I don't feel like taking on the might of the FT.

    And that in the FT from 'an anonymous Harvard Professor'.

    'I'm Sparticus'

    I do believe the banks will screw us over at the first opportunity, but I would like to see data that shows this, not just unsubstantiated rhetoric.
    I would also like to know how they are going to do this to our banking system - aside from paying the bastards huge divi's !. The article in the FT still didn't give answers that could be relevant to the banking system over here.

    Off to Wales for the day.

  4. Monatana:

    From the Groin today...

    "However, the words of a tearful and emotional Boehner early this morning suggested the two men would find little legislative purchase.

    "The people have sent an unmistakable message to the president – and that is 'change course,'" he said. "[To] the extent he is willing to do that, we will work with him.

    He told supporters at a Washington hotel: "Our new majority will be prepared to do things differently.

    "It starts with cutting spending instead of increasing it, reducing the size of government instead of increasing it, and reforming the way Congress works."

    God help America. How the hell can anyone talk about 'the people' speaking, when they've had their voices dubbed over and been manipulated and whipped up into a frenzy of hatred by self-interested billionaires?

  5. Bitethehand alert! He's back as Phimai.

    Yet another dig in a post to BB - "what you effing smiling at fatty" (portayed in a hypothetical scenario, naturally, as he doesn't do 'abuse'). He really is a sick fuck who just can't help himself, isn't he?

  6. anon, where?


    Thank you for the Dotterel yesterday, I'm honoured!

  7. Yep, he's been posting for 2 days or so as Phimai.

  8. Montana -- don't think it would have made much difference if the Democrats had done better

    Spot on . All that mid-term razzmatazz and 99% of the other headline news at the mom is the purest of bullshit, reminiscent of Tony Blair's clanger to the troops in Iraq on " weapons of mass distraction" . Koch brothers ... Listening to the BBC right now "power changed decisively in Washington last night " , bollocks, it is in very much the same hands.

    I see that leni and La Rit were on the ball last night, in reply to tascia, but I was off to bed ... for once. La Rit this morning too !

    For anyone who hasn't been following this monumental Scam, the georgewashington2's article, second one down now, sums it up very well. For GolemXIV you have to go back half a dozen to the 'Gathering Storm' and 'UKplc'.

    What happened is that the Financial System was allowed to run insanely ( and fraudulently) out of control, and instead of the players having to take their losses, those were passed on to all of us. It's not just the well-known high street banks, but the whole Shadow Banking System. Not a paranoid invention of frog2, hehe, there are learned papers by the IMF, Federal Reserve and BoE on it . I was in the markets during the US Savings an Loans scandal, c1980, but that was chickenshit compared to this .

    Have a nice day.

  9. sartrecastic here. just thought i'd drop in to moan about the fifth article on the US midterms just having dropped into the side margin of cif. did the guardian become US paper and no one told me? boring, boring, boring.

  10. become *a US paper. sigh. although become US *toilet paper would work just as well.

  11. Hi sartrecastic, yeah, that and the 35 articles on adoption.

  12. Took a quick look at the article & a few comments on the thread thaum linked to. If I had the time I'd google some articles for a comment over there pointing out that the US version of these academies (called "charter schools" over here) aren't doing any better job of educating kids than good old traditional state schools and in many cases are actually doing worse.

    Didn't take long for the "if they can't afford to pay for them on their own, they shouldn't have 'em" brigade to show up there, either.

    Anybody here read the Harker article on adoption yesterday? What a tool.

    The only upside to last night is that two years from now people will most likely be thoroughly pissed off at the Repugs.

  13. Oh -- and nice to see you here, sartrecastic! Stick around and moan about anything you want to moan about.

  14. leshambles / satrecastic
    I think it's because Matt Seaton now edits CiF America.

    New York New York. So good they repeat the reports.

  15. One other thing before I head to work --

    Is it just me or is reynardmandrake an idiot?

  16. Montana, I've just read the Harker article. The man's a flaming eejit.

  17. I really have no clue how Harker got that job. I know the Graun has some rubbish writers, but Harker is a cut above. He doesnt write well, he's clearly a man of very average intelligence, he is not witty, insightful, original, he doesnt seem to have any suitable traits of a writer at all.

    And some of his articles, in fact most, are just the most GCSE level idiocy. His mothers day piece should be kept in a museum it was so priceless.

    How on earth did this man get that job?

  18. Harker?

    1) we exported religious mores in our establishment of empire, which became codified in law in many countries.

    2) as a result there is a higher incidence of homophobia in, e.g. West Indies

    therefore, 3) homophobia is a cultural trait of W Indies

    therefore, 4) the adoption system should promote the beleifs and interests of black homophobes above other potential adpters in the placement of black children

    It's not the senility of his argument alone, it's the wilful subordination of many childrens' decent upbringing to such an insultingly ramshackle, incoherent political philosophy.

    I'm pretty sure this weakminded claptrap is the outcome of him hating his childhood.

    Get over it Harker. For fuck's sake.

  19. Thats about the sum of it, BW, an astonishingly bad bit of writing/thinking.

  20. JayReilly
    Because he's synthesised his unhappy childhood experiences into a very career-friendly set of (formerly left-wing views), which fitted perfectly to being a "Diversity Coordinator" at the Guardian. (In this former role he wrote continuously about why there are no black editors in the UK National Media)

    Remember - this is the Joseph Harker who was - to applause in the Bison-Latte cafes of North London - equated an increased prevailance of St George flags on white vans to a covert rise in BNP support ... in, er, June 2006.

    A hapless third-rate wannabe pretending to be a revolutionary thinker on race ? I call it the "Malcolm X Factor".

  21. Clearly has some handy attributes for the Graun, yes, but i just still find it amazing that they couldnt have found someone better, someone who could write a bit, think a bit, someone who even *occasionally* had something of worth to say.

    His track record on idiocy is about as bad they come.

  22. "His track record on idiocy is about as bad they come." Oh I think he's got some strong contenders right there Jay !!!

  23. Actually, no you're right. As deputy comments editor he should be at least as good as some and better than most of the contributors. But he writes such incredible dross.

    You win the bet.

  24. BW -- "career-friendly" -- like it.

  25. BW/Jay

    I think it's taken as given that most adopted kids want to know about their biological parents at some stage.And most adoptive parents understand that and are prepared for it.However with regard to inter-racial adoptions i do have concerns about the potential for an ID crisis for any Black child who is adopted by White parents and raised in a town where s/he is the only Black face.And let's not forget that despite all the talk of multi-cultural there are still large swathes of this country outside of the cities where Black faces are few and far between.I therefore take the view that it's probably better for Black children of adoptive White parents to be raised in an area where there are plenty of Black faces.(Conversely i would also have concerns about a White child adopted by Black parents and living in an area with no other White faces)

    There is a debate to be had here about what it means to be British,about whether multi-cuturalism is a good thing,why do so few Black people live outside of the main urban areas etc etc.And whether the idea that a Black child would be better off being adopted by god fearing,homophobic,evangelical Black British parents who may well be harsh disciplinarians as well PC gone mad?(Yes IMO!) But as i said before raising a Black child in an area where they are the only Black face could also be problematic irrespective of how loving and supportive the adoptive White parents were.

    Generally agree with people about Harker.The guys oozes tosspottery.And it is a reflection of the mindset of the White middle class elite at Guardian Towers that he was ever employed by them in the first place.For it's clear-to me anyway- that they really can't/won't see beyond his Black skin.

  26. No problem with any of that Paul, although I'm not sure all-white areas constitute "large swathes" of Britain any more; certainly not England, I'd argue. That notwithstanding - Harker's arguing that these changes in law are "air-brushing out" cultural / ethnicity, and then, in his evidence, argues that in certain circumstances, homophobia can and should be viewed as a norm to be respected and even given priority. I mean, what a dozy C@NT !

    And I heartily agree with the veiled middle-class patronisation "...they really can't/won't see beyond his Black skin."

    Blinded indeed.

  27. Fair points, Paul, but remember he is as white as he is black - his mother is Irish. So put with two black parents he could equally complain about this same identity crisis.

  28. In response to Julian Glover's '10 tips for the lib dems' article, I would like to respond with my '30 letters for Julian Glover':

    1. G
    2. E
    3. T
    4. T
    5. O
    6. F
    7. U
    8. C
    9. K

  29. BW/Jay

    Even in England there are large swathes of the country where 95%+ of the population is White.If memeory serves me correctly the latest population estimates put the White population of England -as opposed to the UK-at around 88%.But in the North East,East Anglia,much of the Home Counties,the South Coast and the South West the figure is 95%+.

    With regard to Harker's identity crisis i think the less said about that the better.He was raised by his biological mother and White adoptive father and unless he was either seriously abused and/or raised in an overwhelmingly White area i'm not sure what his problem is.I mean 50% of Black famiiles and 55% of mixed Black/White families in this country are headed by a lone parent so if he had a halfway decent adoptive White dad he should at least have viewed that part of his upbringing in a positive light.

    With regard to Jay's point about Harker being as White as he is Black there are issues related to that which Harker didn't address.Namely the fact that many people of mixed parentage can feel stuck in a sort of ethnic no-mans land and can feel rejected by Balck and White people alike.So this isn't a clearcut Black and White issue .And it reflects very badly on Harker that he presented it as though it is.And i would also stick my neck out here and ask that if Harker had been raised by two Black parents-as Jay suggested- and still been so angst ridden about it would the PC bods at Guardian Towers have been so willing to indulge him.Personally i think probably not which speaks volumes.

  30. Evening all

    Thanks anon. I worked out it must be him. I will just ignore him unless he starts on me again.

    A friend of mine posted this on Facebook which made me smile although I was mighty cheesed off listening to the news this morning.

    Ah well.

  31. Despair is for those who see the future beyond any doubt. There are many forces at work for good, some remain hidden, some are very small. Each one has the capacity to shine a light when least expected, burning brightly to dispel the encircling gloom. There's kindly lights, magic lights, psychedelic lights, all sorts of lights in the olde light shoppe. There is always hope you see, a fool's hope perhaps, but hope nonetheless.

  32. "Despair is for those who see the future beyond any doubt. There are many forces at work for good, some remain hidden, some are very small. Each one has the capacity to shine a light when least expected, burning brightly to dispel the encircling gloom. There's kindly lights, magic lights, psychedelic lights, all sorts of lights in the olde light shoppe. There is always hope you see, a fool's hope perhaps, but hope nonetheless."

    What a pile of meaningless shite...what's worse..it's plagiarised shite..

    "Defending Middle-Earth Tolkien: Myth and Modernity" by Patrick Curry:]

    Despair is for people who know, beyond any doubt, what the future is going to bring.
    Nobody is in that position.
    So despair is not only a kind of sin, theologically, but also a simple mistake, because nobody actually knows.
    In that sense there always is hope.

    So "Montanawildduck" is a monotonous prick with a soft spot for Tolkein....soooo mysterious...who could it be?

    Hermit...you are one sad, useless old fucker aren't you?
    Look matey..it's not the fault of anyone on here that you're a fuckin crypto-fascist moron with no credibility and a dwindling support even among your equally fuckin ludicrous confederates...if you have to post on here: stick to 'quack' or 'duck' eh mate...this latest post is just more overblown juvenile philosophising...it's truly pathetic.

  33. It's like some of Led Zeppelin's most ridiculous lyrics.

    Flee from me, keepers of the gloom!

  34. "Led Zeppelin's most ridiculous lyrics."

    That's an oxymoron, thauma, they all make complete sense to me... ;-)

  35. When you're NOT tripping, I meant, BW!

  36. Hello All

    Montana (the real Montana)

    Our despair is matched by the spiteful jubilation of others.

    I remember when Maggie came to power thinking that the 'survival line' would rise ever higher with more and more falling beneath it. I got a thorough ticking off for telling some inner city kids - in pretty hopeless situation already - that it was wrong to think the 'world out there' was going to look after them, they had to learn to think, to understand and to fight.

    i was told this was the message of hopelessness - something about enduring ! This from a Christian colleague who was doing alright thankyou.

    There are several brands of Christianity which I loathe and despise - some tied in with politics and others exploiting the poor and hopeless.

  37. Christ, have just clocked the Harker 'article'.


    On Monday, paradoxically, an elderly black couple went to court to claim that they'd been denied the chance to become foster carers because of their Christian-based views on homosexuality. They didn't believe it was an acceptable lifestyle. Clearly these views are outdated, but the fact remains that they are held by many who originate from strongly religious countries in the Caribbean, Africa and Asia. So, if the couple's claims are correct, would the adoption rules now in effect state that black and Asian children can no longer be adopted by those who share their cultural heritage? If so, combined with the message Loughton is sending out, we could be moving towards an effective whites-only adoption policy.

    he does seem to be saying that all black people are raving homophobes. which strikes me as being, um, inaccurate. as well as rather offensive.

    bloody nora.

  38. Ah Thaum. The Rain Song. Fukken awesome.

    Leni - I know. We are scaremongering if we don't buy into the "I have every confidence..." anti-logical bollocks.

  39. "There's kindly lights, magic lights, psychedelic lights, all sorts of lights in the olde light shoppe"

    indeedy. best not forget these lights

  40. I wonder if that's where George Bush I got his 'thousand points of light' brainstorm? (I use the term 'brain' loosely, obv.)

  41. Did he use that one, too?

    John Major used it - and actually held his hand up and looked into the middle distance, as if he was actually seeing the lights and pointing to invading alien spacecraft.

    It all came a bit unstuck when someone pointed out that the lines actually went:

    We've got a thousand points of light for the homeless man.
    We've got a kinder, gentler machine-gun hand.

    Oh, they were also written by Neil Young.

    About this time, Major also used the "Back to Basics" meme.

    Apparently, it seemed, that one came from Babs Cartland - probably one of here Mills and Boone books.

  42. Atomboy, Neil was being sarcastic about George. The thousand points of light was some ephemeral concept (much mocked in the media) very similar to the Big Society. That is, the PR bods came up with a slogan they thought would sound nice, and nobody had a fucking clue what it meant but suspected it translated as "prepare to be shafted".

  43. thauma - thousand points of light? just an excuse for this...

    just another motherfucker in a motorcade...

  44. "The Rain Song. Fukken awesome."

    And once again BB, we are best friends.


  45. BW, not that there was any dancing at the first Leam get-together, but if there had been, I think that might have been one of the choonz danced to.

  46. thauma
    See what happened to Roz in Series 9 of Spooks ? Careful now.

  47. Right. Gin with me missus. Laters !

  48. Re: Harker

    This is pure speculation on my part, but:

    I think most white couples who adopt non-white children are fairly sensitive to the cultural thing. Most that I know (and there are quite a few more than you'd probably guess) make an effort to teach their non-white children about their "other" cultural heritage. For instance, I know that there are organisations in Iowa of families with children from Korea and India that get together to teach their adopted children about their birth culture.

    When the multi-racial child in your home is your biological child, I would imagine that it could be easy to overlook any need to do that. Perhaps that is what happened in Harker's case -- it just didn't occur to his mother that she should make an effort to teach him about his (was it Nigerian?) heritage.


  49. Oh please Phillipa - Singing Footballers are as bad as dancing rugby players..

    It's just shouldn't be allowed in a humane society.

  50. Thanks, thauma.

    I did not remember it from Bush No 1.

    It's nice to see it go through all its instars.

    It makes it incredibly clumsy for Major to have used it, though.

    So, did they not bother to tell him because they were deliberately making him look stupid - or didn't they know, either?

  51. Harsicle. Heh.

    Philippa - good tune, much better than the last one which frankly I had to destroy after a few seconds. ;-)

    Nearly halfway down a bottle of wine in less than an hour. I blame the idiot at work who I had to walk through his fucking job, keystroke by painful keystroke, after a week of begging him to actually respond.

  52. BW

    See what happened to Roz in Series 9 of Spooks ?

    Er, no, actually. Enlighten me? Or maybe not....


    So, did they not bother to tell him because they were deliberately making him look stupid - or didn't they know, either?

    Good question!


    Singing Footballers are as bad as dancing rugby players..

    Ah, but singing rugby players are a joy to behold.

  53. From that Wiki article about the 1000 points of light:

    Bad Religion references the slogan in the song "Heaven is Falling" from their 1992 album Generator:

    I FUCKING HATE WHEN PEOPLE DO THAT!!!!!!!! Reference is a noun, goddamit, and there is a perfectly good verb that does the job just as easily: refers to


    Rant over.

  54. Sorry about that, Montana, I'll try to edit the Wiki article for bad grammar first next time. ;-)

  55. first next time

    Perhaps there are others who are better placed to edit for good grammar.

  56. @Monkeyfish

    Quack. Quack. Quack. Quack.


  57. Much has beenwritten about interspecies communication in the real world.

    There is clearly a Cif piece just waiting to be wriiten about it's on line limitations - robbed of nonverbal cues and body language it doesn't work too well.

  58. @thauma:

    As it happens, I understood you perfectly well and didn't even think about that...

  59. Leni - am getting a bit of interspecies communication just now.

    Generally the communications seem to be satisfied by food/water/cuddle/play/walk (delete as appropriate).

  60. Leni said...

    Much has beenwritten about interspecies communication in the real world.

    There is clearly a Cif piece just waiting to be wriiten about it's on line limitations - robbed of nonverbal cues and body language it doesn't work too well.

    Bark. Bark. Meow. Meow. Grunt. Grunt. HeeHaw. HeeHaw. Cluck. Cluck. Moo. Moo. Baa. Baa. Oink. Oink. Chirp. Chirp.

    Quack. Quack.

  61. Montana - lucky line break substituting for comma, I think!

  62. 'harsicle'
    heheheheh. sounds like a nasty cell.

    thauma / tascia - aye, just couldn't not think of it when 'lights' were brought up! but vision thing rules - and, as i didn't previously know that George Bush #1 nicked it from Neil Young, that makes sense on another level (debut SOM single 'the damage done' taken from Young's 'the needle and the damage done', they're big fans).

  63. Philipa - I wasn't very clear - Bushie (or his speechwriter*, apparently) came up with it first, and Neil mocked it.

    *Hah! Fuel for your requested article!

  64. Montana - the real one -

    The word that really gets my bloody goat is "fragrance" used as a verb in ads for room sprays and such. If they want to perfume a room with fragrance, let them bloody get on with it, just don't fragrance the room!

  65. If anyone's interested Vera Drake is on Film4 tonight at 10.40pm.A film which deals with an aspect of life never mentioned by those who foolishly believe that the 50.s was a golden decade for British society.

    ps For those who don't know 'Vera Drake' is a lady who would once have been called a 'Back Street Abortionist'.

  66. BB

    The word that really gets my bloody goat is "fragrance" used as a verb in ads for room sprays and such.

    Ugh - I've not heard that, but it is indeed a travesty. As are most artificial scents.

    Paul - sounds interesting! Too bad I don't have a telly. (Also that's way past my bedtime.)

  67. "@Monkeyfish

    Quack. Quack. Quack. Quack."

    Look arsehole...don't bother talking to me. You're beneath my radar and beneath my contempt.

    You're a very stupid, very boring man with nothing relevant to add to any discussion unless it happens to be some load of bollocks spouted by equally irrelevant middle-aged losers who seem to think for some reason that their age, alone, has bequeathed them some knowledge and experience that might benefit the rest of us...it doesn't...all the accumulated wisdom of your 'fascinating' life amounts to this: you either weren't paying attention or weren't smart enough to know what was really going on.

    You're a fuckin pub-bore arsehole...one of the worst kind..the kind that can't take a hint. I know that collection of precious constipated dolts who frequent waddaya pretend you're a 'bit of a character' but that's because they've shackled themselves with the requirement to try to remain polite at all times...what they really mean is: "yawn..fuck off and bore someone else with your vegetable anecdotes."

  68. Paul - Vera Drake is a bloody awesome film. Imelda Staunton in one of her best ever roles. Rivetting story - I believe it is a true story too, isn't it?

    I want to get an early night tonight so I shall miss it, but they usually rotate them over a couple of weeks on Film 4 so I might catch it at a later showing.

  69. Hello.

    I see that the civil service are to lose 103000 jobs in the cuts, so if health & education* are 'protected', where's the rest of the public sector job losses coming from?

    *except for FE & HE of course.

    However, I was much inspired by the NUS saying on PM that they would try to use the recall election process to get rid of LibDem MPs who have betrayed their election promises re: HE tuition fees. Sheffield Hallam is the obvious place to start.

  70. Hah - just checked on IMDB and it isn't a true story at all. Pwnd.

  71. MsChin


    Listening to some of the LibDems wriggling and squirming their way round how they had signed the Pledge and were going back on it was excruciatingly funny at lunchtime. Only one of them - and I can't remember who he was, but I think his constituency might have included the Scilly Isles - had the balls to say that he had signed and he was not going back on his word.

  72. Hi, folks. Quack you all, you quacking quackers.
    I'm quacked if I'm going to let some hippy halfwit get away with abusing Tolkien. Here's my much better aging-hippy-fantasy-mumbo-jumbo theory: i

    I have spoken of a thousand points of light.
    George Bush Snr, 1989

    One moment there had been nothing but darkness; next moment a thousand, thousand points of light leaped out-- single stars, constellations, and planets, brighter and bigger than any in our world. There were no clouds.
    CS Lewis 1955 The Chronicles of Narnia - Book 1: The Magician's Nephew.

    This might explain some of Bush's policies. He thought that Kuwait was actually Narnia and Saddam Hussein was the White Witch. I suppose Dan Quayle must have been Reepicheep, the talking mouse.

    Seriously. I quacking mean it!

    Rockin' in the Free World

  73. Scherfig - that's a fuckin insult to Reepicheep, who occasionally made sense, as I recall.

    Will have to ponder the possibility of Sarah Palin being the White Witch, though ... after all, she lives in Alaska.

  74. Hmm ... I see legs in this analogy ... Glenn Beck, Fat Prescription Drug Abuser (can't currently remember name) etc. - all Turkish Delight fans.

    The Horse and His Boy can be worked in in an interesting way given the Muslim "threat" an all.

  75. @ WildDuck

    Your first intelligible post:
    From EnglishHermit

    Though thou be for thy pedegre accompted as aincient as Saturn, in wisdom as wise as Solomon, in power as mightie as Alexander, in wealth as riche as Croessus, or for thy beauty as Flora, yet if thou be careless of religion and neglect the true sarvice of the ever living God thou arte a caytiffe most vile and miserable

    Duh - anyone can google ..

    Your second written post already unearthed as 'plagiarised shite.. '

    You are an 'ANATHEMA'

    A Simple Mistake ?

  76. Froggie2:

    I see that leni and La Rit were on the ball last night, in reply to tascia, but I was off to bed ... for once. La Rit this morning too !

    Bloody hell, for once in my life! (or should that be twice???)

  77. A Simple Mistake ?

    Very simple.

  78. he listens to gong which is no bad thing.

    still a twat though.

  79. Forgot one element of inter-species communication above: sleep in comfy spot.

    That is the current vociferous demand and I am well inclined to concur.

  80. @Thauma:

    "the PR bods came up with a slogan they thought would sound nice, and nobody had a fucking clue what it meant"

    Yep, and they think everyone was is so thick they depicted Big Society as 'Good' = Yellow Smiley Face and Big Government 'Bad' = Red 'Growling' non-smiley face embedded in the logo - what the fuck do they take us for in this country - fucking idiots???

  81. Tascia:

    I was in a thrash band called 'Anathema' - English Fuckwit was not a member ......thank the fucking lord ;-)

  82. LaRit

    PR - contempt for the 'mob' , all of whom are clearly thickos.

  83. The Big Society is a simple concept to resolve – lots of jobs over there that our society need doing – lots of people over here looking for jobs – employ and pay properly (and treat decently) people to do those jobs – stop giving millions to organisations to i) pretend to be doing something about finding people jobs ii) pretend people are fit for jobs when they aren’t, and then iii) sucking up billions/trillions into banking systems – plenty of money to pay people to do the jobs society needs doing – actually useful stuff; and also to support those not fit to work, temporarily or otherwise.

    Our government don’t seem to comprehend the meaning of ‘volunteer’ – to them it obviously means - let’s encourage or enforce free labour – get people to work for nothing, or for some bit of benefit - so our corporate masters can make more money to put away offshore.

    A member of my family – fit, able, well educated and very experienced (but now of mature years) – was twice made redundant to have his job replaced by ‘volunteers’, and now has to work as a 'volunteer' for JSA – that is, is now someone who can be treated with every disdain for not having a job. That’s just Big S**t.

    With the cif case of the worker in his early fifties whose usual mode of employment of many years is no longer possible – what a lot of sanctimonous tosh about how he should be continued being bullied to sixty-five, when many in ‘better’ jobs have been taking retirement in their early fifties, many of whom won’t do anything socially useful again, and quite a few who didn’t ever before.

    We have different niches where we are able to function. There are some types of working chaps who are ‘doers’ – not shirkers – but take them away from that and they’re not going to cope with being put into an office or at a counter. While there are those who can’t be clogs-in-a-wheel. If you tried to do that to me, the clogs would soon be being ripped out and thrown all around.

    Do doctors support their patients? Hopefully, yes; which is still a lot more independent than being much more strongly influenced by knowing you have to find a certain (quite high) percentage of ‘customers’ fit for work whatever their condition. Acting in support of someone is a far more decent thing to do than acting to demolish someone. If in doubt - get another professional opinion then – it doesn’t need to be such a big deal.

    As for all of these volunteers to help elderly neighbours – you can’t do it like that – they’re far too vulnerable. It’s turned out – happens to have happened – that I’m now informally assisting with the care of a neighbour – but I’ve known him for years and am trusted, and by his formal carer, and know the other neighbours, so it’s like really nobody’s business, and I’m definitely not telling anyone officially – dementia-land is a weird alternative-reality place, but it makes much more sense than coming back to ConLib-land.

    I’m afraid Mrs Thatcher is unlikely to be haunted by that she doesn’t regret, because her god has been the economy, and there are no signs of regret about her service to her god. There are different types of dementia – I gather that the one with bad dreams doesn’t affect everyone, but she is likely to be suffering some forms of mental distress. (I’m afraid my old friend does have the nightmare sort – it’s truly frightening for him when it occurs, and they can think it’s really happening too – that’s why such people need someone to sit with them at night – also to stop them wandering off in a state of delusion).

    Which is all to say that being a volunteer is about reacting to what happens around you, without thought of reward (or it being anything to do with the government) – because it feels like the right thing to do – because the stronger should naturally care for the weaker – it’s definitely not for putting onto public display, and it’s definitely not about ‘you have to do this if you want your JSA, even though it was our policies which have made you jobless’.

  84. damnit, now i want turkish delight.


  85. La Rit 20.43-- I was most impressed there! The slow-motion trainsmash continues, with the usual suspects such as Tyler Durden at Zerohedge predicting the next re-arranging of the deckchairs...

    Regards, frog deux

  86. Philippa -- TURKISH DELIGHT ?

    Reminds me I'm actually hungry !

    And one of my very early gf's, 1967, was Turkish, too ...

  87. Evening everyone

    Just got back from trekking round the hinterland to some very bad news. My beautiful, adorable, honourable and generally most decent man on the planet and younger brother has just been diagnosed with bowel cancer. So if that pathetic twat quacky duck turns up on here with his fatuous crap i will personally strangle him.


    I would offer commiserations but even though the US elections have more global significance than my brother - his present condition is all that occupies my heart. One person out of several billion can throw the rest into the shade in situations like this.

    Sorry for the self indulgent post but needed to offload and am a bit pissed.

  88. Hia LaRit

    It wasn't this lot was it ?

    Anathema - A simple mistake

    Had a look at their Youtube catalogue, but no reference to a talented singer in there ! So can't be this lot. And this is definitely not thrash !

    Are you coming up this weekend ? If so No Kissing ! or I may give you back some of em cold germy thingies !

  89. Hi Sheffpixie
    Hope the prognosis is ok.
    Love BW

  90. Sheff - big hugs. Sorry to hear your news. :(

  91. Very sorry to hear that, Sheff.

  92. Pixie --the US elections won't make a gnat's piss of difference to the world, it's all froth.

    For your brother . It all depends how bad it is. Do you know yet ? XX

  93. Sheff - sorry to hear that.

    Progress in cancer research is progressing exponentially. We will lick the fucker soon !

  94. Thanks for good wishes and sorry to be a pain but am so worried - even though I know the prognosis for BC can be good these days especially if its caught in the early stages. Fortunately he hadn't left it too long before seeing the doc and everything moved very fast once they'd identified it.

    So all you chaps out there who resist going to the docs - please don't leave it if you have symptoms - the rubber finger and/or a colonoscopy may not be an attractive prospect but it's better than leaving things too late.

  95. My comment has been gobbled up (as tends to happen) - if this one makes it, could someone kindly unspam it please.

    If we're doing quotations:

    'It's just books! Books aren't dangerous!' But even ordinary books are dangerous, and not only the ones like Make Gelignite the Professional Way. A man sits in some museum somewhere and writes a harmless book about political economy and suddenly thousands of people who haven't even read it are dying because the ones who did haven't got the joke. Knowledge is dangerous, which is why governments often clamp down on people who can think thoughts above a certain calibre.
    Terry Pratchett, The Last Continent

    Terry Pratchett of course is now publicising the research that needs to be done into dementia, and it really needs doing - it's a sort of silent epidemic amongst our older population, where a person - the person themselves - gradually dies whilst still living; but because it mostly effects the elderly has not had any priority.

    A lady I met at the hospital, whose husband has advanced dementia, told me that their doctor had warned her to expect a long bereavement.

    You live until the day you die. Every chapter of the book is important - miss out the last chapter and you've lost the plot.


    One person out of several billion can throw the rest into the shade in situations like this.

    Another version of what I'm saying (trying to say). Of course that's much more important than just about anything out there somewhere.

    My elderly friend had bowel cancer a few years back, and he got over it fine, as did someone else we know, so we'll hope...

    Every person uniquely matters.

    Only it gets difficult to care so much when someone has intentionally enacted policies which makes it harder for those who matter to us to get the treatment (of whatever sort) they need.


  96. Frog

    I'm having hysterics (privately) but my lovely bro is very calm - although i think he's still in shock. He will rise to the occasion because thats what he always does but i just hate the idea of what he'll have to go through. The colonoscopy identified one tumour in his lower bowel. Consultant says its operable and he's having a scan to check there's nothing else.

    Thank christ for the NHS.

  97. Oh dear - LaRit scorned me for not registering with the doc's a while ago.
    Sheff - you have just re-enforced my better half's predilection to get me to go and register !

    Glad to hear it has been caught early.

    everything moved very fast once they'd identified it.

    Same happened with my sister, and the hospital/doctors/nurses were absolutely fucking brilliant in dealing with the symptoms - once found !

  98. Sheff, so sorry to hear that - but early, yes? hugs and love, hang in there.

  99. Oh, Sheff, I'm so sorry. Of course your brother's health is more important. I wish him all the best.


    Fat Prescription Drug Abuser

    That would be Rush Limbaugh.

  100. tascia

    you have just re-enforced my better half's predilection to get me to go and register !

    Good! and make sure you do it! Glad to hear things went well for your sister. My bro says same about the staff in Edinburgh - they're brilliant and he's getting lots of support.


    My elderly friend had bowel cancer a few years back, and he got over it fine, as did someone else we know, so we'll hope...

    I know it can be beatable - and will get into optimistic mode once I've got over the shock. Last thing my bro needs is an hysterical older sister faffing around...

  101. @moonwave:

    Comment rescued from spam bin. As was a nice one from the Duke that had been languishing there since 15:34.

  102. Dammit Moonwave,
    if i'm not in tears thinking about Sheff's Bro and my sis, then your 1st post has just set me off again.

  103. Need somat to cheer me up, and get me dancing !

    Johnny B. Goode

  104. Hi Sheff

    So sorry to hear your news.You,ve taken a bit of a battering this year with one thing and another.But with regard to your brother the fact they've caught the cancer early has to be a good thing.Try not to let things get on top of you and i wish your brother all the best.And i hope your health problem is sorting itself out.Take care x

  105. Pixie 22.06-- if he's rising to the occasion, as it seems , that's good news. It may not just be 'shock' either, maybe he can just face it . Some do, and it's often actually worse for the others in the family who find it more difficult.

    My own GP's eldest was operated for a huge brain tumour last year, and it's coming back . Her morale is pretty good, but it cannot be helped by the state of mind of her parents. I have the opposite example of my youngest cousin -- he had colon cancer , and a 'going away' party at home before he died . Maybe that's the Aussies, any excuse for a few beers ... I found it very impressive.

    Anyway we're not there yet at all, by a very long way ! May I pour you a litre or four of frog2 6% cider ?

    Guaranteed organic, of course .

  106. Sheff, one of my best mates = totally clear 18 months after bc op. A year ago he was touring with us in Scotland - and even had energy to host a masterclass while we were there. OK.

  107. Sheff

    Very sorry to hear your news.

    You and your brother will be in my thoughts and I wish you both well.

  108. Watched 'Jools' last night, and apart from a good interview with a totally unpretentious 'Clapton', they had someone called 'MIA' performing. Well she sure can't sing, what a waste of oxygen.

    I was thinking what a brill backing band she had though, turned out to be the 'Specials'.

    Here it is

  109. Tascia, good shout.
    MIA was absolutely fucking shite last night - but I did like her band.

    PS Eric was quite gentle with that useless cock Holland. Perhaps he'll play Bell-End Blues for him next time he's on.

  110. Bloody Hell Scherfig, I'd forgotten about 'Reepicheep' ....

  111. @Tascia: "I do believe the banks will screw us over at the first opportunity, but I would like to see data that shows this, not just unsubstantiated rhetoric."
    Well, quite, so would I which is why I suggested someone might like to post the issue on "wadya" as a topic people ought to be discussing.

    I wasn't suggesting that "Golem's thoughts" should be taken as gospel, merely that one of the Guardian hacks could do what they are trained and paid to do, which is investigate if someone's claims stand up to scrutiny.

    I'm not a journalist, so my "proof" such as it is, is purely anecdotal but I took my bank to court on three occasions and they caved in and settled in my favour because they knew fine well they would lose if I ever actually got my day in court.

    In other words, I called their bluff and they "bottled it".

    It was a de-facto admission that they had been running a scam.

    It's a scam that needs to be exposed, otherwise we are going to be taken to the cleaners all over again.

    @Sheff: sorry to hear your news. best wishes and fingers crossed.

  112. ...the worst offender last season was that smacked out tuneless prune who used to shag Curt Cobain. Risible. they put her on right after Lissie, which was a hilarious contrast.

    (Can't be arsed to do link)

    Lissie was great


  113. BW - lovely, what a voice !

    Checkov - no respectable guardian 'Journo' will investigate an 'angle' after watching 'The Bourne Ultimatum'.

  114. @tascia:

    Hmm. Only saw Brad, Hozza & Nick Torp, their new keyboards player. It's not the Specials if Terry isn't there. :-) But you're right -- she was shit.

  115. Actually, I wish I'd known 30 years ago that you didn't actually have to be able to sing well to become a rock/pop star -- especially if you're female. Just look fuckable enough and they'll make you a star.

  116. SheffP:

    Your brother will be OK. I know it, because if you are anything to go by, he'll be coming out of that shock with the gloves on and the fighting talk ;) Have some of the Frog Deux cider and make sure you stay well armed and dangerous - it's the only way ;)

  117. that smacked out tuneless prune who used to shag Curt Cobain.

    Best description of her I've ever read.

  118. @Tascia: fairy nuff but just 'coz the Grauniad can't be arsed, doesn't mean it's off limits to make the point on "wadya".

  119. BW - you lazy bugger. I reckon I can do a link quicker than it would take me to type:

    (Can't be arsed to do link)

  120. Montana - I didn't even think that ! After listening to that voice - nough said !

  121. Thinking of my sis tonight.

    She bought me 'Dire Straights' 1st LP 6 months before they had a hit with this:

    Sultans of swing

    She knew I liked good guitar - same as she did.

  122. NN all - think i've beat Habib tonight !
    Can't be arsed to count.

  123. tascia
    Liked good music - as do we all
    Sweet song right here

  124. Cheer BW - sweet - Can't sleep,

    This is another good one from 'Dire straights' from the same album....

    Down to the waterline

    Best version I could find !

  125. But by far and away the best from that album, and definitely my last post:

    Water of Love

    Just luv that guitar !!

  126. Tascia:

    No, that was definitely NOT our band - the Real Anathema ended in tears and teenage fights after about 50 rehearsals and 5 gigs....no record of our existence :(

    Jury is still out about 'Le Weekend as the eevil Germans are making my life absolute hell :(

    "You live until the day you die. Every chapter of the book is important - miss out the last chapter and you've lost the plot"

    Moonwave - what can I say? You have a way with words...