09 December 2010


Respond intelligently even to unintelligent treatment.
-Lao Tzu


  1. ctrl+alt+4, on my keyboard. just in case.


  2. El Pip got it.

    Ok, anyway Bracken, they are paying out €40million!

  3. Morning all,

    If I may be so bold, can I point you to this article on Susan Philipsz, the Glaswegian 2010 Turner prize winner and the Glasgow art scene in general.

    Although I’ve always been uneasy about the ‘gentrification’ of Glasgow and the increasingly evident divide between the rich and poor in the city, it is great to see the city’s long, proud art scene celebrated.

  4. ...which, if this is being shared between up to 2,400 employees, works out (SLB) as €16,667, which, using current HMRC spotrate of 1.1757 is £14,176. if one chappy compained that he was due about €160,000, the average is about 10% of that, giving as a guideline broad bands of
    and if you break that down of, say 2500 employees on a sliding scale of
    1.6m x 10
    160k x 100
    16k x 300
    1.6k x 2000
    then you get to €40m overall.

    entirely guesswork, course, but prob more likely reflective of the general split.

    - response up from oxford on the demographic stats - make a lot of sense to my tiny mind, am waiting for btl stattos to get at it - reality probably not yet found, am guessing spectrum is something like:

    Lammy..........(the truth)..........Mapstone

  5. @PhilippaB:

    Talking about Lemmy - this tickled me...


    Oh, you said Lammy? Ah well, never mind. Never too early for a bit of Motörhead...

  6. mornin'

    Bit despairing of the level of political analysis in this country. I was listening to radio 4 on my way to work. Nick Robinson was being interviewed about the fees vote today. He suggested that people rebel against their party because they enjoy the thrill of public approval, or because they enjoy provoking anxiety in their leadership. I guess the idea of 'principles' and 'values' has just completely gone in political discourse, then?

  7. shiloh - heheheheh. i'd trust mr kilmister more on stats, frankly.

  8. Wakey - wakey, campers...it's another beautiful day in The Big Society and it's time to stop thinking of yourself and instead start asking: "Am I doing enough to help Britain's hard-working millionaires?"

    As the saintly Pietro Mandolinbum has pointed out, the rich have suffered enough. It's time we showed them some love and appreciation for the selfless way that they have been moving their money off-shore, relieving the over-burdened taxman of the stressful business of taxing it....

    And to get you up, rich person-friendly and low-wage amenable, one of my favourite bands of the last few years.

    Great sound from the London 3-piece who compromise a singer, a guitarist/bassist and a knob-twiddler/turntable botherer Belleruche - Minor Swing.

    Featuring a nice re-tooling of the old Django Reinhardt/Stephane Grapelli tune. A great nervous-system stimulant and a perfect substitute for food, warmth and shelter.
    You're going to need it.

  9. Meerkatjie

    Bit despairing of the level of political analysis in this country...Nick Robinson was being interviewed about the fees vote today...

    It might be an idea to keep in mind that the BBC dropped any pretensions of unbiased, impartial reporting a long time ago.

    Nick Robinson is simply an embedded Neo-Nasty shill.

  10. @jack cade:

    I think the most nauseating bit of news I read this morning on the way into work was well-known chinny rug-wearing national treasure (and cunt) Bruce Forsyth (“look ma! my hair grew back in my 70s!”) letting on that that all-round cunt Mandelson had been pestering him to get on Strictly Come Dancing.

    Although I might suggest a new “format” to freshen things up a bit if Mandelson does get the nod for series 650 or whatever the fuck it is – Strictly Come Dancing (At the End of a Rope)…

  11. PS

    I guess the idea of 'principles' and 'values' has just completely gone in political discourse, then?

    Why would the media allow things like that to muddy the waters when they simply operate as the government du jour's rumour-mills, propaganda-machines and public relations operations?

    People in a democracy are there to perform two simple functions:

    To spend and to be taxed.

    If they fill their stupid little minds and their lazy working days pondering about principles, there could be anarchy.

  12. there could be anarchy.

    Looks like it's started. I've been reading some of the wikileaks threads and pottering about elsewhere on WLs related stuff and joyous glee at being able to hit back through DDoS attacks really seems to be taking off.

    Many mice roaring....although some of them seem to be a bit unsure what it's all about.

  13. AB

    Put all those together AB and they'd make a great advent calendar!

  14. Just had this from Ireland


    Times are tough, everybody is in debt and everybody lives on credit.

    On this particular day a rich German tourist is driving through
    the town, stops at the local hotel and lays a €100 note on the
    desk, telling the hotel owner he wants to inspect the rooms
    upstairs in order to pick one to spend the night.

    The owner gives him some keys and, as soon as the visitor has
    walked upstairs, the hotelier grabs the €100 note and runs next
    door to pay his debt to the butcher.

    The butcher takes the €100 note and runs down the street to
    repay his debt to the pig farmer.

    The pig farmer takes the €100 note and heads off to pay his bill
    at the supplier of feed and fuel.

    The guy at the Farmers' Co-op takes the €100 note and runs to
    pay his drinks bill at the pub.

    The publican slips the money along to the local prostitute
    drinking at the bar, who has also been facing hard times and has
    had to offer him "services" on credit.

    The hooker then rushes to the hotel and pays off her room bill
    to the hotel owner with the €100 note.

    The hotel proprietor then places the €100 note back on the
    counter so the rich traveller will not suspect anything.

    At that moment the traveller comes down the stairs, picks up the
    €100 note, states that the rooms are not satisfactory, pockets
    the money and leaves town. No one produced anything. No one
    earned anything. However, the whole town is now out of debt and
    looking to the future with a lot more optimism.

    And that, ladies and gentlemen, is how the bailout package works

  15. "principles and values...discourse"

    Also, see BBCs insistance on primary importance of money in any major cultural / sporting sporting event.

    R5 seem ideologically obsessional about promoting the amount of money generated by the the location of World Cup, the Olympics etc, but gush on about it without question about where the profits end up. I note the BBC kept very quiet about how much of S Africa's infrastructure was provided by China (2 new stadia, roads, etc, without any clearly malign intent), but parped on very noisily about the billions of pounds the event generated - as if this was all trickling down to Tikki Bombili's family in his tragic shanty town.
    As fucking if.

  16. Sheff

    That pretty much sums it up, although the rich German tourist could, perhaps, have been a global slave-trafficker to make it closer to reality.

    One you might like to send to an MP near you - or stick on a lamp-post. (You can choose whether that is leaflet or MP).

  17. Bitterweed

    Yeah, do the tabloids still do the: "Miranda, an attractive and petite blonde 22 year-old single mum, said she heard the explosion as she was getting out of the bath" nonsense, I wonder.

    Perhaps that has changed to: "Miranda, who filches a small fortune from hard-working taxpayers to fritter away on flat-screen home cinemas and her layabout boyfriend who drains the economy of money which should be flowing into the deserving pockets of the rich..."

  18. Sheff,

    I stuck that on the Deborah Orr thread as I though it apposite. Hope you don't mind, you've been hat-tipped ;)

  19. I will circulate that one to the appropriate people AB as am still stuck in the house with knee trouble. There are ice rinks posing as pavements round here and am not risking the outdoors 'til I've stopped hobbling.

    I'd be going nuts with cabin fever if it wasn't for the wikileaks saga, as am not good at incarceration/incapacity - I am a stranger to patience.

  20. AB
    Yeh - I was on the train to London last Saturday with a gang of mates, one of whom had the Sun, first time I've read it in about 20 years. I know it's hardly news, but the Editorial Formula:

    1 Stories / pictures including quite ghastly, senseless and grotesque violence set to outrage encourage simplistic, aggressive responses

    2 Stories / pictures set to make men horny / women insecure

    3 Stories / pictures celebrating absurd avarice

    Rotate until Sports Section, then apply 1,2,3 formula to Football and any other sports "story" of the day.

    Result !!!

  21. Sheff - love it! Have you got anyone bringing you supplies?

  22. Sheff

    Yes, sorry about the knee. Hope it is soon mended. As your proxy GP, I recommend lashings of hot-toddies.


    The only small saving grace is that many people who read things like The Sun are actually aware that they are basically comics for people who cannot cope with too many words.

    I heard someone say of The Daily Mail: "Yeah, I like The Mail - they tell it like it is."

    Of course. As it is for brain-dead Nazis.

  23. Mes enfants are doing their duty on request thauma - so am fine really. Just irritated that I can't leap about the way I'm used to. Must find a suitable thread on cif and vent some spleen.

  24. Here is something that is as restful as an aquarium, for those of us who are housebound and haven't got one.

    Edinburgh Zoo Penguin Webcam

  25. Sorry to hear about the knee, Sheff...this might give your other knee a bit of a tapping-type workout, though...The Sonics - Have Love, Will Travel

    But in this season of goodwill, we need to look beyond the obvious. Far too much attention is focused on the homeless, the poor, the disabled and the sick.

    While these people, who may very well not be shirkers and layabouts...one doesn't really know...are doubtless to be pitied (up to a point) and aided (up to an even smaller point),it is fair to say that in a very real sense (©T. Blair), they are not net contributors to The Big Society.

    How unlike the very rich; whether employing impoverished foreign footballers, keeping tax-accountants busy or providing the luxury yacht-builders of Stockton-on-Tees with gainful employnment, the rich are reinvigorating can-do, buy-to-let, 57-varieties-of-iPod, minimum-wage Britain.

    So please, remember the rich in your prayers and ask God to keep them safe from lynch mobs, violent assaults, arson, poisoning, shooting, garroting, being run over with a steam-roller, drowning, defenestration, radiation poisoning...(That's enough kill-the-rich fantasies-Ed.)

  26. 'Defenestration' is one of my favourite words jack...I shall spend a little time pondering on it. Great tune too!


    Those penguins are heavenly and having a most soothing effect.

  27. Peter,

    that penguin cam is brilliant. They're having a rare old time in their natural climate.

  28. A report from the trenches of the Internet Wars:

    Carole Theriault, a senior security consultant at Sophos, a computer security firm, said: "If the big companies weren't locking down their information before, they're definitely doing it now.

    "This is really unprecedented and Amazon could be next." [...]

    The post read: "Hello World. We are Anonymous. What you do or do not know about us is irrelevant. We have decided to write to you, the media, and all citizens of the free world at large to inform you of the message, our intentions, potential targets, and our ongoing peaceful campaign for freedom.

    "The message is simple: freedom of speech. Anonymous is peacefully campaigning for freedom of speech everywhere in all forms. Freedom of speech for: the internet, for journalism and journalists, and citizens of the world at large. Regardless of what you think or have to say; Anonymous is campaigning for you." [...]

    One tweet mocked MasterCard's advertising slogan with the comment: "There are some things WikiLeaks can't do. For everything else, there's Operation Payback."

  29. Just a quickie as I thought you might like a bit of good (anecdotal) news.

    Just interviewed a prospective volunteer. Young lad about 17/18, came in on his way to the Student Fee demo and was off to rendevouz with his friends from the School up the road (he has left but his mates are still there).

    He was not warmly dressed so I checked he had more clothes in his bag but he got kettled last time so me behaving like his mum was quite unnecessary.

    But anyway, it warmed the cockles of my cynical old heart, this kid coming in to offer to volunteer to help elderly people en-route to the demo.

    Kids! They might be a shower of hoodie wearing thugs obsessed with Strictly Come Dancing, but they are all right really.

    I have to interview some older people for the scheme at 3.00 so I couldn't go down with him. But I might go along afterwards. Anyone know what time the vote is scheduled?

  30. "There are some things WikiLeaks can't do. For everything else, there's Operation Payback."

    Loved that...

  31. I meant to say: thauma, check out the great Leo Kottke giving a Fleetwod Mac song the business....Leo Kottke - World Turning

  32. Spence
    "There is due to be five hours of debate in the Commons from around 1230 GMT, followed by votes from 1730 GMT."

    Get down there !

  33. jack cade
    Do you know LK's "Parade" ? Not a great song for showing off his playing, but I've loved it since early 90s.

  34. Thanks, Bitterweed. I will go down after I have seen these people.

  35. I do, BW. I've been a big Kottke fan for 30-odd years. Here's one that does show off his playing...Leo Kottke - Dead End

    Yes, good luck, Spencer and if you do go down, give them hell.

    (There's a Harry Truman quote I like. While making a campaign speech, someone in the crowd shouted "Give 'em hell, Harry" to which Truman replied "I don't give 'em hell: I just tell 'em the truth and they think it's hell").

  36. AB

    That Theriault woman seemed to be saying a DDoS attack was hacking but its only a lot of people accessing a site at the same time which is not the same. Is using a botnet illegal in the UK?

    Interesting piece in Haaretz on the Carmel fire

    While Netanyahu thought that it was the Carmel that was on fire, and that the flames had to be put out, the public's perception was that nobody's in charge, and that an entire government had collapsed before its eyes.

  37. Cheers JC, I can't do muso at work, but will revisit some of these on the weekend. ( Loving yer work on your channel by the way )

  38. Thanks for sharing that Sheff - made I laugh lots, and lots.

  39. spencer

    According to the groan the plods are predicting a riot (but they would, wouldn't they) Student protests

    Protesters will be allowed sight and sound of parliament. However, there is evidence to suggest a number of people will come to London intent on causing violence and disorder. They are jumping on the bandwagon of these demonstrations with no intention to protest or interest in student tuition fees. This is of concern to us.
    Those who come to London for peaceful protest will be policed proportionately and appropriately. But those who are intent on committing crime will also be dealt with and they will suffer the consequences of their actions.

    So take care, watch the plods and try not to get stuck in a kettle... but give 'em hell (in whatever way seems appropriate at the time).

    PS: Take a camera and post your snaps up in the gallery. Sorry am being bossy - but thats what cabin fever does to me...

  40. Best placard so far at the demo

    does my society look big in this?

  41. "Give them hell"

    Actually, I am bit old for hell-giving. But I do have a reasonably respectable middle-aged appearance and some credit and debit cards and I thought I might be of use if kids were getting crapped on by the police. So my plan is more to be around in case support is needed rather than running around breaking stuff.

    Just cleared it with my manager. She can be difficult sometimes but there are occasions when having an elderly Glaswegian socialist for a boss is the best.

    And now she is here to look after the "Thursday morning muggers" (Community Payback guys) now I am going to try and bring this interview forward.

    So later folks!

  42. Sheff

    From the article:

    In this case, hundreds of volunteers have downloaded something called a botnet, which aids the distribution of the command to attack the site. The volunteers wait until they are given a signal on an internet chatroom, before launching the massed attack.

    The attacks are illegal in Britain and carry a maximum sentence of two years.

    It is probably better to work on the assumption that if you are:

    1. Not rich
    2. Not a member of the political class

    then both you and anything and everything you do is either actually or potentially illegal.

    As His Holiness the Blair liked people to think when His ministries were temporarily earthbound before He occupied the space between sainthood and godhead:

    If you are not in prison yet, it is only a matter of time, *you filthy fucking scumbag.

    * I'm not sure whether he actually said that bit or if it was just implied

  43. Does my society look big in his?

    Who says education is wasted on students?

    Got a piccie linkie, please?

  44. So far no pic AB but will look.

    Maybe I won't download that LOIC - then again, maybe I will. Have to do something when you're stuck indoors.

    Spencer - You are never too old to give 'em hell - I'll vouch for that!

    Watching Vince making his spiel - nauseating spectacle...

    Still no Jenn - hope she's ok.

  45. Sheff-

    Glad your kids are helping you out! My one and only is in a 'Mum;'s a bloody nuisance' phase at the moment.

    Need her to help get cat to vet (home visits cost £71 up front so have to accept the help that is VERY grudgingly given.

    I know she's tired but there is no-one else :(

    Feeling a bit tearful and unloved at the moment.

    I will get over it don't worry! Been here before - often :)

  46. Anne

    Am bribing my son with lunch today....

    Email me and offload if you're feeling a bit down. Be good to hear from you.

  47. Just read about a student who was injured in a protest.

    It can be found here

    She's lucky to be alive frankly. No doubt about it its time to be taking sides.

    She's a muslim was wearing a hijab police reffered to it as 'pass the parcel'

    Racist pratts!

  48. Thanks Sheff! May do later! Venturing out this pm! The ice has all but disappeared down here! (at last! but for how long!)

  49. Cheers Sheff, will take a look.

  50. Sheff

    "Michael Chessum on BBC this morning and it reminded me that the current system is biased in favour of well spoken, upper middle class chaps like him ..."

    Well who knew ???

  51. I LIKE the idea of the weasel Geoff Hoon being banned from visiting the premises of Parliament for five years.

    I'd like it even more if ... he were invited on Strictly Come Dancing (at the end of a rope*, of course).

    * TMswifty

  52. Hi Anne, don't know if this helps, but around here cats can travel free on buses. Dogs have to be paid for. Bus driver once admired my beautiful cat with a wink. (Dog's head is about the size of your average cat.)

  53. Spike said...


    Sex toys and schools? Not a good combination... I hope Bitey isn't having a sinister influence on his little chum Bracken

    Why don't you go and do something you're good at like being a stool pigeon for CiF's moderators, instead of trying to curry favour with people who should be ashamed to be associated with you?

    Well actually some of them are.

  54. Bitters

    "Michael Chessum on BBC this morning and it reminded me that the current system is biased in favour of well spoken, upper middle class chaps like him ..."

    heh..heh..heh.. - i won't spoil it for them!

  55. Sheff
    Indeed ! Deary me. Can't win eh ???

  56. Frog

    Caborn too. He was my MP until the last election - I always knew he was a sleazy, weasily fuck, (had some dealings with him), up to his neck god knows what with the 'business' community.

  57. Could only get the interview brought forward to 2.15 so I have nipped home to put on another layer in case of kettling and grab my old camera.

    Watching Sky News coverage I just saw Danny Alexander, apparantly quite seriously suggest that students could study part time and work as a way of dealing with the Lib Dem betrayal.

    Am I hallucinating?

  58. thauma

    Bus driver once admired my beautiful cat with a wink.

    I am not very good at the subtleties of human, er, intercourse, but was this what we might call a double entendre of the Mrs Slocombe variety?

    Which, for some reason, reminds me of my recent adventures in the large-as-life, lumpy world.

    I went to:

    NatWest Bank
    HSBC Bank
    and, oddly, another

    I now hate:

    NatWest Bank
    HSBC Bank
    and, unsurprsisingly, the other

    Is Winterval over yet?

  59. Goodness gracious me, I know not what this 'double entendre' means.

  60. As we know, Hoon established a property empire worth millions after claiming taxpayer-funded expenses for at least two properties.

    Why is it - WHY IS IT ??? - that such a thick, innefectual bastard who is a traitor to so many can get so fecking loaded ??? I mean, I can understanding sly, conniving, or smart and educated people raking it in, but for all I've ever seen he's a f@cking spanner. Somehow makes it even worse...

  61. "Does my society look big in this"
    I hope the creator of that masterpiece receives due adulation.

    Ahh, Annetan, "how sharper than a serpent's tooth it is to have a thankless child!" Have my love and regards, for what they're worth. :-)

  62. thauma, AT is (like myself) a diamond geezer and in diamond geezer rhyming slang, 'beautiful cat' means 'nice new hat'...

    Now, I really must 'stroll on, me old china' as we diamond geezers are wont to say--I've got to get dahn the rubadubdub to see this Jeremy about a blag...then it's rahnd me old dear's for tea...where I'll definitely take Jack Brice's advice...Jack Bruce - Never Tell Your Mother She's Out Of Tune

    BW, Hoon is living proof that being a large sack of excrement is no obstacle to holding high office...

  63. Aye JC
    I see Hewitt got off. Shame that.

  64. "I see Hewitt got off."

    What an incredibly disturbing image that is, BW.

  65. From the Jerusalem Post:
    "Mediation talks over 'Mavi Marmara' incident reportedly stall over difference of opinion: Ankara wants 'apology' whereas Israel wants to 'express regret' "

    Don't you just love the complexity of Middle Eastern politics?

  66. habib

    What an incredibly disturbing image that is, BW.

    I wish you hadn't shared that observation, i hadn't thought of it and now it's firmly planted in my imagination. I'll revenge myself somehow.

  67. heyhabib... disturbing image ??... you sick , sick b@astard ;-)

  68. jack cade...

    Get a life or something vaguely resembling one, but for Christ's sake, give your wounded self-regard a breather.

    You, who names himself after the leader of a popular revolt in 1450s Kent, speaks about wounded self-regard.

    I suppose you've got a collection of ancient pitch-forks to bolster your morale?

  69. Sorry. ... grins with embarrassment and side steps away...

  70. Hi All

    Jenn says hello to all - she is fine. Just taking a break.

  71. 'noon all


    do you think penguins have afternoon naps? cos went and had a look at the webcam thing and just snow not a pingu in sight.........

  72. Watching the protests outside parliament on BBC news channel - bit of trouble brewing - one charge by the horses so far - lots of pushing and shoving - few odds and sods being thrown.

  73. Showing my ignorance, and I don't know why, but I was really hoping Jack Cade was an associate of Al Swearingen.

  74. Don't mind me, just on my third attempt to get the friggin blogger connection to work!

  75. sheff
    they say here that there are 2 coppers seriously injured....nothing about students though.......

  76. These fuckin "Jeremys" make the Mafia look like the Salvation Army!


  77. I have often said that governments should sponsor the soporific dullness and mind-crunchingly, er, mindless antics of places like Dribbly and CiF in order to stifle and exhaust dissent and debate.

    I have also said that the various GovThug agencies of the state obviously foster and promote the idea that everyone is a terrorrist and that we will only survive their onslaught by relinquishing all our freedoms and embracing the technologies of fear and control.

    This time, though, they have gone too far:

    Corrie bosses fear Al Qaeda ahead of live episode

    Police in Manchester are stepping up security around this evening's live Coronation Street episode over fears the studio has been targeted by Al Qaeda.

    They were tipped off that the ITV1 soap's historic 50th anniversary broadcast from Manchester could be hit by a terror strike.

    Corrie stars will undergo full body searches, with cast and crew passing through airport-style detectors before being frisked in security checks at Manchester's Granada studios.

    The soap has already hired an army of private security staff over concerns trouble-makers were plotting to let of fireworks and rev motorcycle engines nearby.

    Now anti-terror police acting on intelligence are sending extra officers to guard the nation's favourite soap.

    Letting off fireworks and revving motorbicycle engines are already classed as terrorism anyway.

    Aren't they?

    Who is currently winning the "Don't panic: We're all doomed" contest?

  78. jack cade

    ...in diamond geezer rhyming slang, 'beautiful cat' means 'nice new hat'...

    Oh, does it? Phew!

    I always thought the cat/pussy thing meant cunt.

    You know - of the lady-petal variety.

  79. Whato chekhov. How's progress ?

  80. How Advertising Works # 1


    (Old but pretty funny still)

  81. Good to hear that Jenni is resting!

    This one was not him, but here he is --

    "Hoon also b*ggered off to watch the football when the Sergeants' Mess had a dinner in his (dubious) honour in Iraq. Wonder what went in his breakfast the next day..."

    Good article btw... I heard about that Hooon football bit elsewhere, people were very pissed off at him. ( Tho I'm not sure the story was not set in UK-- trouble wiv transmissions ...)

    Bloody Hell Atoms -- "revving motor-bike engines and letting off bangers". That is anarchy.

    Under the Lisbon treaty they can ask for assistance from other EU states ...

  82. AT, equally droll was Russell Crowe's claim a couple of years ago that he was a target of an Al-Q kidnap team:

    At the time, the Hollywood actor had never heard of al-Qaida or its reclusive leader. But Osama bin Laden, it seems, knew all about Russell Crowe.

    In one of the more unlikely terrorist plots, the Oscar winner has revealed that he was a kidnap target for the network, and that the FBI was so concerned about his safety that it gave him protection for four years.

    The FBI told him that terrorists had devised a "cultural destabilisation plan" that involved seizing high-profile actors.
    --The Grauniad, March 9, 2005

    ...because obviously, things would fall apart (the centre wouldn't hold) if anything were to happen to some corpulent Kiwi luvvie.

    Pitchforks, Gummy?...hell, yeah, I've got pitchforks:

    Got pitchforks, pikes and burning brands
    and one dull ox called Gum The Hand
    who farts and gazes into space
    and chews his cud-like data-base.

    This one's for you, Gummy...Jojo Effect - Same Old Song

  83. Hello "Bitters", just phoned you but no one answering. Nearly done here so let me know what you have decided and we'll sort summat out for next week.

  84. Hi mate, yeh, will call you later bwana !

  85. "Anyone seen Bitey ?"
    Not a sight of him. It's coming up to the 5-6 hour when it all gets quiet. Anybody got any music lined up?

  86. Master and Commander was a good film tho...

  87. @gandolfo

    I just had a look at the penguins, and there were at least three of the little buggers standing around flapping their fins (wings? arms?) in the snow, in the dark.

    There was dozens of 'em earlier.

  88. BW, save your skills for better times, you best any of us... Enjoy your pint :-)

  89. Here's an early evening tune for you Habib

    Ballad of an ordinary man

    Not seen bitey for ages

  90. Sadly not, BW, although I loved Deadwood and would happily have conspired with Al; however:

    Jack Cade: Be brave, then; for your captain is brave, and vows
    reformation. There shall be in England seven
    halfpenny loaves sold for a penny: the three-hooped
    pot; shall have ten hoops and I will make it felony
    to drink small beer: all the realm shall be in
    common; and in Cheapside shall my palfrey go to
    grass: and when I am king, as king I will be,--

    All: God save your majesty!

    Jack Cade: I thank you, good people: there shall be no money;
    all shall eat and drink on my score; and I will
    apparel them all in one livery, that they may agree
    like brothers and worship me their lord.

    Dick The Butcher: The first thing we do, let's kill all the lawyers.

    --Henry VI, Act IV, Scene II

  91. Head most definitely bowed to Sheff and Jack.

  92. Thursday = all local: veggie box, cheese and bread night at the BPITW . So I've got to go ...

  93. Aye habib, BW exits left, humbled

    "A man talking sense to himself is no madder than a man talking nonsense not to himself."
    - Guildenstern.

  94. "A man talking sense to himself is no madder than a man talking nonsense not to himself."

    ah, aspiration...

    Song for my love and Jenni and other absent friends, too. xx

  95. Yeh, say hi to Jen if you see her.

  96. The law serves of nought else in these days but for to do wrong, for nothing is spread almost but false matters by color of the law for reward, dread and favor and so no remedy is had in the Court of Equity in any way.
    Jack Cade

    Things haven't changed much in nearly seven centuries have they?

  97. Actually, that doesn't read as glib and funny as it sounded when I said it in my head, so, I'll go with 'Evening all', instead!

    If that's ok with everyone!?

  98. Not much, Sheff:

    In the winter in the Summer
    Don't we have fun
    Times are bum and getting bummer
    Still we have fun
    There's nothing surer
    The rich get rich and the poor get poorer
    In the meantime, in between time
    Ain't we got fun?

    --Ain't We Got Fun? by
    Whiting/Kahn/Egan (1921)

    Dave, I enjoyed the film, too. I think Weir is a good director and most of the cast were fine, even Bettany as Maturin.

    But I wasn't really happy with Crowe as Aubrey. I guess that being so familiar wih the books, I had (and have) a very clear picture of Aubrey and I found Crowe a bit jarring.

    Still, the film looked great, even if they did fold two books into one film. Thinking about it, I wonder if Liam Neeson would have made a good Aubrey? His looks and build are closer to my image of Aubrey and he's a good actor.

    But I'm carping...I should be grateful that an O'Brian book made it onto film. I wish someone would attempt William Gibson's Neuromancer trilogy or Neal Stephenson's Snow Crash...

    Oh, well...Doc & Merle Watson-Smoke That Cigarette

  99. Ha ha James!

    Terribly presumptuous of me to imagine I could start a music hour.

  100. James

    Perhaps: "Yo! MoFos!" would have been better.

  101. monkeyfish...

    You post about my outlandish claims about other people and wild accusations on here, but once more come up with no examples.

    Now I can understand the problem with finding my posts on CiF as that would entail going through article after article where you think I might have posted, although WDYWTTA might make a good starting point. But here they're all in chronological order with nothing before December 2009.

  102. Not that I have ever used it, even when I imagine myself to be a rap star - which has also never happened.

    Actually, what does MoFo mean?

  103. jack

    Just made me think...

    There may be trouble ahead
    But while there's moonlight and music
    And love and romance
    Let's face the music and dance

    Before the fiddlers have fled
    Before they ask us to pay the bill
    And while we still
    Have the chance
    Let's face the music and dance

  104. Atoms:

    I'm not sure, to be honest, but I tend to use it most when Mummy, or, more often, one of the 'help', doesn't cook my partridge correctly.

    (I think everyone deserves one warning before one has to 'pop a cap in an ass'!!')

  105. "Actually, what does MoFo mean?"
    I think it's an oedipal thing.

  106. Habib,

    Cannae see or do links at the moment, so I'll be the weird guy in the corner who spends the whole party thumbing through your CD collection, while occasionally giggling innapropriately, if that's OK??

  107. Sheff, ha ha, you just ain't quick enough, kid.

    James giggling is prerequisite in my company. It would only be inappropriate if I inadvertently said something sensible.

  108. MoFo Party Band right here


  109. Sensible, erm, schmensible!!

    That sort of thing's for squares!!

  110. Square's are still what cool kids call the not cool kids, right!?

  111. Is this like that time when, rather than actually asking me to leave the party, everyone just fucked off to another one when I went for a piss??

  112. James
    Yeh, but there's a half smoked spliff in the ash-tray... go on.. you know you want to


  113. Already have, Bitters,

    (Also, somebody's not going to very happy when they go back for their coat later....)

  114. James
    surely, "pop a cap in a ass" ?

  115. Excellent. Well I'm going to chill here til my cab comes.

    Got any mandys ?

  116. Hey, BW, checked your mail lately?

  117. Bitters,

    Being gangsta is still no excuse for sloppy grammar...

    Honestly, some people...


  118. Here's Bon ton Roulet to go with the rest of that spliff Bitters..

  119. BW

    Got any mandys ?

    All out of mandys but i got some bennies if you're interested :-)

  120. James, so sorry !!!

    Thauma, yes - you ? ;-)

  121. Hey Paul nah, too fast for a Thursday mate, lol.

  122. WTF - Have the BBC got a job lot on 'North Face' (top dollar) winter gear?

    Every outside broadcast with a BEEB person at the minute is done by a broadcaster with a 'North Face' jacket prominently displayed.

    Perhaps it's just that the bastard's pay and expenses on the BBC is simply OTT. - "we are all in this together" my arse.

    I'm fractious 'cos I've spent the day comparing the NICE clinical guidelines on 'Depression' with the Atos practice for IB claimants - surprise surprise they are miles apart.

    Still it will help with a possible reference to the Parliamentary Ombudsman if necessary.

  123. Evening all!

    Well that was fun.

  124. BTW - anybody got any experience of taking an issue of maladministration to the Ombudsman (has to be via your MP)??

  125. Steady, Sheff, I got to go to my work xmas party in 45 mins - I'm gonna be trippin while they unzippin their coats, heh heh !

  126. Still cannot access the Untrusted Flickr account. Any ideas?

  127. Monkeyfish about? If so - you been reading anything decent lately? Book list running low.

  128. I'd noticed the North Face thing too, Deano!

    (But I'd just assumed it was the only attire that would completely cover the 'I love Cameron' tats, and/or other scars acquired in the process of 'gimping'...)

  129. Spencer - if you don't already have it Montana will send you the log in procedure/password if you email her......ah since you've already posted some pics you must know that?

  130. Have you got the log ins spencer?

    All these student protests have made me quite nostalgic. have some Country Joe

  131. A42 - a pleasure to see you around again.

    Hope your cat is soon OK and your daughter comes through into a civilised phase before Christmas.


  132. Thauma, well it was fun in a confused, sporadically violent sort of way. The police seemed to be more confused than anyone. By the time I got there they were letting people out of Whitehall into Trafalger Square but weren't letting people in.

    So I walked down the back of Horseguards to Great George Street which is another way into Parliament Square. That was cut off by a very serious phalanx of riot police.

    It did not look like there was going to be any way in but then, for some reason they decided to let people through and into the square but not let them out (the opposite of the lot at the top of Whitehall).

    I realised that if I went in there was a fair chance of getting kettled for the rest of the evening but I thought, fuck it, and went through.

  133. Sheff, BB gave me them but they don't work for me.

  134. deano, BB posted those for me because I could not get in.

  135. if you read fiction Jay, I recommend Alone in Berlin by Hans Fallada - an intense trip through some very grim times..

  136. I can't think why they don't work for you if you're keying them in right. Perhaps you should check they're correct with Montana.

  137. Anyway, once inside the square things got a bit interesting. There was no way out. Quite a few fires burning. But I went towards Victoria Street and suddenly people started running back and I could see it was a mounted police baton charge. They made a couple of charges and then something amazing happened.

    Everyone started running back. Obviously someone at the front had taken the lead but I could not see that. But we (I am using the term "we" loosely as I was just running in a crowd of people some way from the front) drove them back.

    That is something new to me after nearly four decades of protesting one thing and another, driving a mounted police baton charge back.

    Things settled down a bit after that.

  138. peter

    just took a look thought that they'd all be in bed....but no little blighters are out there....waddling around with their "flings" (wings + fins)

  139. Sheff, I am cutting and pasting them from BBs email and have tried a dozen times so something is not right.

  140. I got talking to a guy who had a suitcase with him. He had just come back from Italy, to Victoria from Gatwick but the tube was closed and the police had directed him into the kettle!

  141. Re the London demos: Bloody hell, the BBC are sycophantic little shitheads. Reporter dons a helmet on air, talking about missiles being thrown. Except there weren't any. I know, because I was hoping for one to hit the fucker in the face.

  142. That was good because it looked like we might be there for hours and he said he had a few bottles of Italian wine in the suitcase.

    While we were wondering where we could get a corkscrew from some young kids, about 16 or so, came up to ask something and, by sheer chance they recognised this guy. They knew him. So they started telling him about how they had been invovled in the fracas with the mounted police, much nearer the front than me. At the front in fact.

    They were absolutely loving it, faces shining with excitement, and then they ran off to have a go at the police bottling off the bottom of Whitehall.

    As they ran off this guy turned to me with a rueful smile, shook his head and said.

    "I know those boys from my church!"

  143. spencer

    do you have an email you'd put up here for long enough for me to grab it - then I could send you the ones I've got which do work?

  144. Looks good enough for me, Sheff, will add it to the list.

  145. spencer

    it's the british equivalent of vendetta bet they thought "fuckers been on 'oliday...we'll giv 'im 'oliday....."

    however if he'd been in rome he should be used to it...we're averaging a punch up every 3 days here...

  146. Anyway, a bit later one of the lads came back and told us that the police were letting some people out into Whitehall.

    So I went with the guy with the suitcase as he was so obviously a bystander caught up in it. Got stuck in a crush which was by far the most frightening moment, but then got let though into Whitehall, only to find another line of police really tightly kettling a group of protesters.

  147. Spencer - Driving back the pigs - excellent! You lost me on the geography bit; I'm not the slightest bit familiar with London, but I think I have the gist from your explanation! (Could look at map, but am too lazy.)

    Habib - prop department looking for something to do, perhaps?

  148. This comment has been removed by the author.

  149. Thauma, I am too lazy to try and make a proper link but if you want to C and P this should do it.


  150. Got it spencer - you delete it now

  151. Anyway, it turned out that there was a way out of the apparant kettle in Whitehall. Not for the people surrounded but that mini-kettle only seemed to take up the whole width of the street by the cenotaph. There was actually a tiny way through which one policeman was trying to get others to let us through as more people were filtering out of the big kettle in Parliament Square and, sensibly enough, he did not want our numbers to build up.

    So I got in and out. But only out because I am middle aged and possibly because I was with this guy with the suitcase. They stopped it up again moments later, by all accounts.

    It seemed to me to be complete confusion. Certainly the coppers on the ground did not know what was going on. They were contradicting each other, some letting people through one way, other another. I thought at first that it might be a cunning plan, to filter people through one way and not let them back so that they end up getting steered in and out of the area you are controlling.

    But it rapidly became clear that it was much more random and confused than that.

  152. is it true that sakineh has been freed from prison...?

    it's what they are reporting here...

  153. I have to give the BBC its due here. I have seen plenty of shit reporting on the BBC but the way they categorised the demonstrators was exactly what I saw. They said there are older, university students (cue a nice middle class girl who appeared to be smoking a spliff) and then "younger, more volatile, college students" cue a bunch of young mixed race guys, some with scarves over their faces saying something along the lines of "we are poor and from the ghettos and how are we going to get a decent job, do they want us to deal drugs on street corners, ya get me?"

  154. gandolpho

    not much of this site is in English -
    but it would seem so.

  155. Yay! Success.

    I will stick up some photos. Unfortunately they are mostly crap. I took my not so good little camera and my camera which has gone mad as it doesnt matter if that one gets smashed. But it seems to have been very poor at anything with movement. So most are a hopeless blur.

    And all the ones after dark are like pictures of darkness!

  156. sheff

    from the italian ANSA new agency they say she, her son and lawyer have all been released (in fact yesterday)

  157. Anyway, that is what it looked like to me. No masses of Trots, no crusty old anarchists fuelled up on Special Brew, who I had thought would probably being the most violent. But it was these kids for the most part. Mixed race hoodie kids in nike gear getting political and having a lot of fun fighting the police.

    Interesting times.

  158. According to C4 News - Charles and Camilla had a close encounter with some revolting studes as they arrived for some performance or other in the West End.

    C4 also confirmed that Sakineh and her son have been released, together with two German journalists.

  159. habib...
    "Bloody hell, the BBC are sycophantic little shitheads. Reporter dons a helmet on air, talking about missiles being thrown. Except there weren't any. I know, because I was hoping for one to hit the fucker in the face."

    made me laugh....

    today has been one of those days.....

    found out that a really nice,young, politically passionate woman that i know was killed trying to rescue her cat that had escaped from her at a railway station here in rome......i won't go into details....

  160. ""Bloody hell, the BBC are sycophantic little shitheads. Reporter dons a helmet on air, talking about missiles being thrown. Except there weren't any. I know, because I was hoping for one to hit the fucker in the face."

    Funny. The use of helmets by reporters today was ridiculous, not the BBCs finest but they have got on their website some reasonable coverage of the horse charge, and another bit showing two protesters being extremely roughly treated and thrown to the ground.

    They also showed an injured policeman, the poor dear - he'd probably broken a few knuckles. Didnt see any footage of protesters despite 1 (at least) being taken away in an ambulance.

  161. gandolfo

    sorry to hear that news. Truly awful and so sad.

  162. Spencer said...
    " They made a couple of charges and then something amazing happened.

    Everyone started running back. Obviously someone at the front had taken the lead but I could not see that. But we (I am using the term "we" loosely as I was just running in a crowd of people some way from the front) drove them back.

    That is something new to me after nearly four decades of protesting one thing and another, driving a mounted police baton charge back."

    Now that is fucking amazing!

  163. Fucking Hell, Gandolfo, that's awful!

    (Although I'm not sure I wouldn't have done the same...)

    big hugs to you!!

  164. timboktutu

    It really was. And more amazing because it was not hoary old class warriors but kids leading the charge.

  165. The polis were being quite free with their batons earlier this afternoon I noticed. Some of the revolters were using paint bombs I think and the plods were getting a dousing - I don't think they were best pleased. They should be grateful it was only paint.

  166. OK I have put the best of a bad bunch of pics up.

  167. Sheff, to be fair here, the guy with the suitcase had seen a lit bottle thrown at the police immediately before the mounted baton charge. It did not explode, he thought it was probably filled with water not petrol but something in the bottle top had been lit to give the police a scare.

    But you can see why they would not be too keen on that.

    And there were plenty of missiles I did see going in their direction. Kids breaking up breize blocks for missiles too.

  168. sheff, james

    thanks bless her...i'm not sure i would have done the same...but she was that kind of person...she was true to what she believed, in actions and words....

    re the boot boys....when i was in chile they filled water canons with piss and poo and sprayed it over demonstrators and then lobbed in tear gas...those were the days...

    even here in the reporting of the demo in london RAI's correspondent has come over all BBC saying that the demonstrators weren't really students but anarchists and black block( a particular obsession here after Genoa), mind you he was tucked up in the studio minus helmet looking, well, very italian..........

  169. Oh, one think before I forget. In front of Parliament were these barriers and then ranks of riot police with helmets, shields batons at the ready.

    And as I was looking at them these four girls passed, all about 17 and they all had cat face paint. Just a black nose and whiskers.

    They looked so sweet and cute, smiling away and chatting. And behind them there were these phalanxes of grim faced riot police.

  170. the police should be in with the students....aren't they getting screwed as well by cameron's lot? now that would be interesting......

    where's kermit, has anyone seen him around?

    ......maybe he's on the thin blue line........

  171. Gandolfo, respect for your friend.

  172. gandolfo

    The most frightening plods I've ever met were in Washington on a demo outside the world bank. I've got some snaps somewhere, I'll have to dig them out. They carried long nightsticks which they held across their bodies and intimidated everybody without fear or favour.

  173. gandolfo

    It is a pity that the cuts to the police have not really bitten yet.

    I have a feeling that even people as stupid as this coalition are going to realise that pissing off the police is a very dumb thing to do when you are infuriating lots of other people too.

  174. gandolfo

    piss and poo? - that is a low blow..effective i should think.

  175. William and Kate were "attacked" on their way to a "do", apparently. Someone probably stuck a middle finger up. Hardly a trip to the Tuileries?

    Thauma, ha ha: "Habib - prop department looking for something to do, perhaps?"
    Aye, because they were shite during the last Mesopotamian war. I mean, how much effort does it take to fake a WMD?

  176. The Taylor of Panama is on More4 at 9pm for Le Carre fans.

  177. Beg your pardon, it was the older Hanoverians.

  178. sheff
    piss and watery poo ain't nice, nor was the tear as or shooting of guns over people's heads (live ammo......)brit police are light weights imagine them with guns,,,whenever i see police here with their guns out makes me quiver........

    i reckon that the polis will soon realise they are screwed....a large percentage of their pay comes from overtime and that'll be cut.... of course assuming the government doesn't do a u turn.......

    thanks... respect indeed.....

  179. Dunno about that, Gandolfo. I reckon there was a fair bit of overtime today.

  180. Spencer
    "I have to give the BBC its due here. I have seen plenty of shit reporting on the BBC but the way they categorised the demonstrators was exactly what I saw. They said there are older, university students (cue a nice middle class girl who appeared to be smoking a spliff) and then "younger, more volatile, college students" cue a bunch of young mixed race guys, some with scarves over their faces saying something along the lines of "we are poor and from the ghettos and how are we going to get a decent job, do they want us to deal drugs on street corners, ya get me?"

    One of the most hilarious things has been seeing from interviews people unable to even speak English properly talk about how they are expecting to go to university and that to them it is a god given right. It is an insult to the many many people throughout history that never went to university and never ended up as drug dealers. Their ethnicity does not matter- if you don't have a grasp of English grammar then you have no place in a university.

    I can understand why they want to go because they see university as a way out, but that is only becuase they have been 'carried along with the tide', namely labour's ideology to get 50% of young people through a university means that employers have been able to demand that a workers with degrees that 10 years ago would have required A levels and 20 years ago GCSEs.

    It also means that for these new students, new vocational courses have to be made up, of extremely questionable academic merit, of which 20 years ago they would have expected to receive as free training on the job. Instead of that people like me are expected to support ourselves studying for a few years, then applying for a job in that field, and not even having the certainty of getting that job.-- It is a con. Universities have are complicit in this.