02 December 2010


There is something that Governments care for far more than human life, and that is the security of property, and so it is through property that we shall strike the enemy.
-Emmeline Pankhurst


  1. Blimey, slept on the sofa last night because the heating is only on in the front room and woke up sweating and feeling like I had a fever, far too hot.

    I sometimes think 'never bloody happy' should be my middle name. ;)

    Chekov your post about your daughter made me feel really sad for you, it must be awful not to be there to see your children grow up. :(

  2. Morning all

    Well I think I can say I officially have as much snow as oop north now. A foot of snow at Gatwick overnight. No trains even thinking about trying to leave until after 10am. Don't ever remember it being this deep here.


  3. BB

    It will be a real news bonanza now it has reached London, they won't have to rely on Northern reporters and can go back to telling us how civilization will end because Goodge Street underground is closed. ;)

  4. Good morning.

    No change, weather & road-wise, round here.


    Soooo true. The north will be excised from the media whilst we hear about cyclists (aka govt Ministers) stuck in the snow.

  5. And BB - only a foot of snow? Peh.

    We have more than 2 feet here and 3 feet just over the border in Derbyshire.

  6. Jen
    "It will be a real news bonanza now it has reached London, they won't have to rely on Northern reporters and can go back to telling us how civilization will end because Goodge Street underground is closed. ;) "
    Aye, like when the floods kicked in, and the north being underwater was apparently being covered by one regional news reporter, whereas when mild dampness hit the home counties it was wall-to-wall pictures of reporters standing in the biggest puddle they could find, holding a brolly (mandatory flood coverage position).

    feeling very watercolour this morning - couldn't sleep last night so got up for an hour, then oisette needed to get up at 7am so think have had about 4 hours sleep and don't think the coffee is going to help any...rowr.

  7. breaking news is gatwick is shut until at least 6am tomorrow.

  8. Are you coming over here for Christmas Philippa?

  9. Spot on, Jenn!

    All my mum's family are in the borders, not that far from Turm, and they have proper snow pretty much every year, but until it affects Maggie Thatcher's Berlin Wall (the M25) you barely hear about it on the Beeb!

    Gatwick is a little over a mile, as the crow flies, from my house. And seeing as crows are about the only things likely to be flying today, it is nice and peaceful again. No traffic to speak of, no trains, no planes.

  10. damnit, prem sikka's good...
    "They came into this world empty-handed and will exit in exactly the same way, but leave behind impoverished citizens and employees"
    comments depressingly predictable, as has been noted...

    interesting thing - was watching 'fais pa ci, fais pas ca' last night (the best french-made prog on TV, think - a sort of comedy soap drama...erm...'shameless' type thing, although about the middle classes - some surreality, some touching moments, erm...difficult to describe)


    it features two families - les Lepic (fairly affluent, conservative) and les Bouley (more boho) - in both of the two episodes last night, there was a short scene with a religious element. Pere Lepic found one of his daughters praying, that the family wouldn't have to relocate to China - he responded by kneeling next to her, and praying, out loud, that his daughter would have the courage to seek out new things, new places, new challenges etc. it was very touching, and very well done.

    in the next episode, thinking that the parents of Pere Lepic had died (comdedy twist later in the programme), there was one scene where the family, sitting around the table, prayed for their loved ones - interupted by a telephone call - and another where the priest came round to give a blessing and they sang a hymn (interupted by appalling singing from Pere Lepic). they all creased up - it was very natural and true-to-life (the acting, btw, is across-the-board brilliant).

    It occured to me that you wouldn't see that in a similar UK drama - religious faith seems only to be shown positively in full-on comedies (Vicar of Dibley, Rev) where it is 'safe' - that you can laugh at it if you wish - sort of hiding the possibility that it might be 'real' (in the sense of reflecting what people really do - i remember Dad saying that while VoD was a slapstick comedy, some of the bits where she chats with Jesus were actually pretty good).

    Usually characters who are overtly religious are bad, or at least troubled - controlling parents, psychotic killers, religious extremists.

    I can't remember ever seeing a realistic portrayal of 'faith in action' in a UK TV drama (at least, set in the present day).

    Just struck me as interesting.

    No sure if you can get it from outside France, but it is here for any francophones - i make it out ok with subtitles...

  11. To be fair BB they have been reporting the weather but they have gone into overdrive today since the South was affected.

    I have heard more about Gatwick and Orpington station than anyone ever needs to know, where is Orpington and do I care if their train station is closed?

    Very long segment on the Beeb about people having to sleep on the Brighton to London line trains (what a nightmare that must have been for them) but it has been happening all over.

    But it is a London line and Brighton (that is where the editor spends his weekends) so now it is important. ;)

  12. Philippa, I offer you Dot Cotton as a non psycho believer (hasn't done her much good though).

    Can't think of anyone else so I suspect you have a point.

  13. OK, Dot Cotton. Had some good moments early on in 'Enders. That's genuinely the only one I can think of.

    Jen - aye, was checking out Waddya to see if there were drinks, but unfortunately the day i arrive, which will be late, at st pancras, and after a full day of travelling (9 hours), so am unlikely to have the energy to go. 20-31 december (tickets are cheapr on NYE, nobody wants to travel, hehehehehe). suffolk from 23-27, return journey to London, inevitably, to feature four trains and a rail replacement bus service...will take a book...

  14. jen - snap! wrote my comment while you were putting that up. bit odd that she's the only one we can think of.

    maybe the archers - the archers may occasionally go to church, welcome a new vicar to the village (church often more central to country rather than city life, somewhat due to pracicality, perhaps).

    but emmerdale? never watched it, but...

  15. Philippa, it's weird but I have seen this very conversation somewhere else.

    In that conversation I was reminded of Sheila Grant from Brookie who was a devout Catholic and seemed to get extra misery given to her in punishment.

    I've never noticed it before but British TV just doesn't do god.

    You are travelling home on New Years Eve?

    You might be the only person I know who will have a more miserable one than me.

  16. My fave local politician, leader of Sheff council, has been on Radio 4 again. Grrrr. Now blaming the unions for local schools closures (!) when the people of Sheffield have come up with a solution to the problem, where teachers get into the school nearest their home. The unions have pointed out that the schools most likely to remain closed will be in the erm, poorer neighbourhoods, and kids could be put at risk because unknown teachers may not be CRB checked etc. In fact, the unions have had the temerity to point out that what seems on the surface to be a good idea can be bloody difficult to implement as policy.

  17. Ms Chin

    They want to send teachers to the nearest school?

    So they are wanting to use them as babysitters rather than teachers then.

  18. jen - well, now i'm old (hehehehehehe) i don't really 'do' NYE - never liked the enforced staying up until midnight in a party environment. so for the last couple of years in blighty it was either home with chocs and wine and watching crap tv, or round a friends' house with chocs and wine and watching crap tv. now i use it to travel, should get back here about 5pm, so even allowing for delays, should be available to go round a mates' place where there will be, no doubt, chocs and wine and crap tv.

    suits me down to the ground!

    re: brookside, interesting. again, showing a less than positive aspect, perhaps? dunno if it's mainly a catholic thing, but saw a quote once, "some people suffer their faith rather than celebrating it". or just living it, which is fairly common from my experience.

    you know, it being something you do / are / think rather than everything (at least to an onlooker). i think the prog last night was the closest to representing, for example, my parents, than anything i've ever seen on british tv.

  19. Jenn

    Totally! If it doesn't affect London it doesn't exist!

    I think they have picked on Orpington because it is a classic commuter-belt town in Kent, so they want to show "outside London" as well... ahem...

    Anyhoo - reading last night's Waddya and our duckie friend had the temerity to take on RedMiner on Atos and benefits.

    "This is yet another example of how the extreme left are undermining the resistance to the cuts by failing to get their facts right. Stop jumping on the bandwagon!!"

    Dear oh deary me, talk about leading with your chin...

  20. ...not sure explained that very well...mean, say, if you met me dad, it might be quite obvious that he is a christian (when he starts whingeing about having a stewards' meeting, or the ongoing fusebox issues with L----- church) but God wouldn't come up in conversation unless you actually ask about it*.

    as opposed to people who shoe-horn it in at every available opportunity, like in reference to buying milk, or something.

    *in which case, he'd be happy to chat, but would probably be more interested in what you had to say than evangelising...

  21. Chocs, wine and crap TV sounds exactly like my usual night. :)

    Except for the chocs and (sometimes) the wine, I have now lost one and a half stone, I have a waist again. :D

  22. We don't tend to do faith in entertainment here unless it is to show the downside of it, for some reason.

    Mind you, the French are pretty good at taking the piss out of it too - have you seen La Vie Est Une Longue Fleuve Tranquille, Phil?

    Brief synopsis - middle class very Catholic mother and "shameless" housing estate mother give birth in the same hospital at the same time. Midwife - who is having an affair with the obstetrician and is pissed off with him - swaps the babies over, but keeps evidence of what she has done. When obstetrician's wife dies, midwife is convinced he will marry her, but when he makes it clear he won't, she posts the evidence to both families and the obstetrician, then buggers off to the seaside while all hell is let loose.

    Brilliant film, very funny.

    You've got all sorts of biblical references, notably the posh family's maid who swears blind she has never been with a boy, yet she is pregnant...

  23. BB

    RedMiner at his best, methinks, and likewise our very own PaulBJ. And ArecBalrin is just brilliant on the disability / sickness benefits stuff as well.


    I thought you explained it rather well. My sister-in-law (vicar-in-training) is pretty much the same.

  24. BB - yes, have seen it! first french film oisette made me watch, thought it was wonderful.

    may make a suggestion on waddya...nah, that couldn't possibly turn out well...could it?

  25. Philippa I think you explained it well too, my friends sister was a novice nun for a while (before getting it on with a very handsome firefighter) and she is still very much like that.

    She walks in her faith all the time (very poetic) but never pushes it on people.

    We have had some excellent conversations but I still just can't get that god is real mindset.

    It really baffles me.

  26. that's a lovely way of putting it, jen.

    have risked making the suggestion.

  27. Woohoo! More than a foot of snow in Brighton - London cut off! Brass meerkats!

  28. You soft northerners don't appreciate the suffering that we Londoners undergo. I almost slipped on some ice this morning and the baker had no fresh croissants and my nose turned an unattractive red and I almost broke my toe on a dosser who'd frozen to death overnight and my newsagent hadn't received this months issue of Horse & Hound. Don't talk to me about suffering, you wimps: I'll give you chapter and verse.

  29. Jack Cade

    Funny twitter I saw earlier from Londonsnowhorror.

    No milk left, will have to use single cream in my coffee. ;)

  30. LOL Jack.

    Pretty much sums it up! :o)

    "Single cream in my coffee"... oh, the humanity!

  31. You see, jen? If you cut us, do we not bleed? Furthermore, this month's issue of Milady's Boudoir hasn't arrived. There's an article by my friend Bertie on What the Well-Dressed Man is Wearing that I was especially looking forward to. I find myself conflicted on the subject of spats.

  32. What's your view on soft-bosomed shirts for evening wear, Jack? My own issue of Madame's Nightshirt hasn't arrived since the year Bluebottle won the Cambridgeshire.

  33. Morning everyone.

    Well, we now have a full inch of snow in places here in Paris. Perhaps even two on the top of my car. None on the streets, though. Not sure if it's the higher temperature of the tarmac or if they've been round salting here.

  34. I'm in favour, Peter, although my man, Cringe, disagrees. Mind you, he disapproves of my brass-buttoned white mess-jacket, which went over such a treat at Cannes. He also dislikes the small and rather elegant moustache I'm cultivating. The man's a fossil.

    I wonder if the prize-giving at Market Snodsbury Grammar School has been called on account of the weather?

  35. jack - fear not, the Market Snodsbury Grammar cadet unit has been sent out with shovels in a combined backbone-building and path-clearing operation - two birds with one stone! don't say they don't know the meaning of efficiency in these straitened times...

  36. Still snowed under in Glasgow. I braved the supermarket yesterday, but that is it. Shall be going to my volunteering this afternoon- If push comes to shove I can walk.

    Meanwhile, the wikileaks. Does anyone remember it from it's early days, back then they just let anybody put anything vaguely confidenatial they had snaffled from a workplace online? Things like minutes from a local council meeting here, or seating arrangements in a corporate meeting etc. But now there star has risen.

  37. From some wag, via FB;

    Benefit Concert for The South East of England Snow Disaster
    Location: SECC Glasgow, Shay Stadium Chicago, Luzhniki Stadium Moscow, McMahon Stadium Calgary
    Time: Saturday, 04 December 2010 18:0

  38. I remember that, Charles. It was something like Scribd for secret stuff. Now Julian Assange (or Elric of Melbourne, as someone memorably described him yesterday) has larger plans and a swollen ego to match.

  39. Morning folks. Taking a break from trying to tidy up - before hitting the phones again to see if everyone is OK. And for the information of chippy northerners there is at least two inches of snow here!

    I think the thing that people miss is that it is not so much that we in London suffer more than the rest of you, it is that we are so much more important.

    I got in to work to let in the usual Thursday morning crims (they are on community service and use the community centre for a base on Thursdays) without supervision. Their boss phoned me to say he would be an hour or so late as he was trying to find transport for them because of some snow related crisis.

    Eh? Hang on, they use the toilets and tea making facilities, supervising them is not part of the deal.

    So it was just me and 8 or 9 community service guys, some of whom are there for mugging people, in the building.

    They are OK though. Much better than the last lot who were younger and much more macho. These guys just want to get through their hours.

  40. Actually, the way the Community Service thing works, I cannot help wondering if it has been franchised off to some private company, A4E stylee.

    Anyone know?

  41. Only a matter of time Spencer.

    You are doing a good job in the face of mass indifference, very well done to you.

    Is it ever going to stop bloody snowing?

  42. Elric of Melbourne is a good one. Assange really does look like Moorcock's anaemic hero.

    Have you read The Power of The Dog by Don Winslow, Peter? A (barely) fictionalised account of the futile and bloody "War on Drugs" fought on the US/Mexican border. Compelling and appalling. I can't recommend it highly enough.

  43. MsChin - I heard that item. They used to have that arrangement in some areas a few decades back, then presumably dropped it for prohibitive cost/bureaucracy issues - not least for ad-hoc CRB checks). Still a good idea though.

    Lord Adonis showed his true colours on Today this morning - couldn't get a rizla between him and Portillo on 80s privatisation. They were ideas "whose time has come". Bastard.

  44. Hi Jeni. Actually I should have got off my arse much earlier.

    I used to send the newsletters to every faintly relevant councillor but have not done a proper one since the election. So the new Labour councillors have not seen them.

    We (that is all the good neighbour schemes, there are about 8 in the borough) are doing a lobby of the council leadership next Tuesday but I can't go because we have a Christmas shopping trip. But I produced this newsletter with lots of big colour photos of volunteers working with elderly people in wheelchairs, so that the lobbyists can wave it at the councillors.

    But the 7th of December is very late in the day so I decided to distribute some beforehand. Thus my dash to the Town Hall yesterday.

    I get the feeling that it is all too little, far too late though.

  45. LOLing at that FB entry, Turm. :o)

    Adonis is an asshole. That is all.

  46. @Thaum

    I've just emailed this to Amazon:

    I'm a frequent customer and I'm disgusted to see that under pressure from the US administration, Amazon has pulled the Wikileaks site.

    If Amazon doesn't believe in free speech, it really shouldn't be in the business of selling books.

    I hope you'll reconsider your decision so I can continue to place orders with you.

  47. Aw, hells bells, I was just going to order two books off amazon, that are really essential for my studies and my work. I'll have a look elsewhere though first and see if I can get them from another website. Perhaps the book depository or Ebay.

  48. Andrew Adonis (more 'Andrew' than 'Adonis', as someone once put it) is a Blairite ultra. Need one say more? 'New Labour' was just a synonym for 'Tory Lite'. From Blunkett the paid stooge of AE4 or whatever they're called to Milburn the lobbyist for private US healthcare corporations to Mandelson, who thinks that 'the rich have suffered enough' to Byers the 'cab for hire' to Purnell, advocate of the new workhouse...scum, the lot of them.

  49. Going out to clear a patch to feed the birds, may be gone some time.

  50. Just got an email about training opportunities. For the last couple of years we get to access the council's training which is really great, but some of the things they do...

    For example, they are offering Safeguarding Adults awareness... drama based.

    to be put on by Legs Akimbo? Drama based?

    I did the normal training for that and it was OK except for the bit when we had to look at (invented) examples of abuse of vulnerable adults and then discuss how this made us feel.

    I mean, what the fuck does it matter how we *feel* about it? What we need to know is what to *do* about it.

    But say that in the training session and you get looked as if you had just pissed on the sandwiches, I find.

  51. Charles, check:


    Use their search engine. You'll be amazed at the range of academic texts they have available (free, of course, if you don't mind a digital version).

  52. @Charles

    I'd give Abe a try too.

  53. Hee hee a Legs Akimbo led training day would be awesome.

    Colin, I have been throwing out my brekkie for the birds, is that ok?

    Shreddies with water for clarity (fucking diet).

  54. Agreed all that Jack C - just google Patricia Hewitt and see all those lucrative Private Health consultancy gigs that popped up afer her risible spell as Sec. Health. Once a Tory, always a Tory. Bitch.

    And BB - succinct !)

    @Colin - for God's sake carefaul out there.

  55. colinthestoat

    hehe, I read that initially as "Going out to clear a patch to feed ON the birds, may be gone some time."

  56. jen,
    Poor little buggers will take what they can get in this weather. But with water? Yuk.

  57. Stoaty! Hope you've plenty Titanium White in store! Or leave the blank canvas, job 95% done ; )

  58. Colin there is a reason I only eat half of my breakfast.

    Never mind at least the birds are doing well out of it.

  59. hey, colinthestoat! long time, no read...

  60. Hey, I can see a bit of my desk!

    This "tidying up" is great. A bit like exploring.

  61. Here's something for those of us who have been putting off re-reading Anthony Powell's Dance to the Music of Time (hem hem); a free e-book download of the first volume from the University of Chicago Press.

    It's here.

  62. Peter

    I had no idea I was putting that off but thanks. ;)

    Seriously, thanks.

  63. turminder,
    Am painting poppies in an attempt to cheer myself up.
    I suppose it's too much to hope that the delightful young sex worker on cif is a replacement for one of the Bs?

  64. Yes, well, Jen, I haven't actually been putting it off either. But if Vol 1 is as good as people say it is, then there's another 11 good books to read that I haven't got to yet. So I've downloaded it on my phone.

  65. "I'm a frequent customer and I'm disgusted to see that under pressure from the US administration, Amazon has pulled the Wikileaks site...If Amazon doesn't believe in free speech, it really shouldn't be in the business of selling books...I hope you'll reconsider your decision so I can continue to place orders with you."

    Wish I could reply on Amazon's behalf to that lump of outraged consumerist dung.

  66. I've downloaded it too Peter and honestly thank you for it, I feel a bit weird not downloading things against the law but I will get over it. ;)

    I love audio books so much, they make the walking I have to do something to look forward to rather than a chore.

    Not leaving the house today but I will massively enjoy listening to it tomorrow.

    It is aural isn't it?

  67. What-ho Stoaty - no idea on her career paths, sorry. How's South East treating you ? Is the continent cut off again?

  68. @Jenn

    Sadly, no. :((

    Have you tried any of the free audiobooks from Open Culture?

  69. Colin! Fab to see you here again, you've been missed, old chap.

  70. I thought you believed in market forces, Bracken, you ludicrous oaf.

  71. Bitters,
    Yep, they are totally isolated.
    Getting cabin fever, had no Idea how much I needed Tesco.

  72. That's a bummer Peter, I do love audiobooks but I suppose I can drag myself back down to reading.

    I have been reading a lot less lately, this is something that needs to be changed.


    Leave it, he is doing his usual trick of appearing from the mist, attacking, blustering and declaring himself the winner.

    Don't play his game.

  73. "Had no Idea how much I needed Tesco. "

    Amazon don't do booze do they ?

  74. It would actually be nice if there was someone who could come on here and challenge the views without the rampant fuckwitedness.

    Bracken the job isn't for you.

  75. Afternoon

    It is a warm 70% here. the swifts have returned to the chapel and the poppies are in full bloom.

    This has been arranged for us by the Assembly as part of their vote for independece campaign. The Great Celtic Revival is underway.

  76. My Canadian other half, who scoffs at such puny amounts of snow (a mere foot of it here) walked up the shops earlier dressed as Nanook of the North and brought back some Niquitins for me, so I is saved! Saved!

    I tried walking up the road yesterday, got as far as the roundabout i.e. 50 yards, and wussed out completely.

    No full-face balaclava, no dice. Brrr.

  77. Peter

    Don't you believe that people should be guided by their principles ?

    Do you act or speak out against things you feel are wrong or unjust?

  78. Hello MsChin.
    No comrade, it's the ambience I miss.
    They had had a special purchase of White and McKay whiskey a couple of days ago so I bought 3 litres, I still have nearly a bottle left so I should be ok for today. After that it will have to be the wife's vodka.
    Thank you for your concern you cheeky fucker.

  79. Spencer - shall be sending similar e-mail later on. Had been planning to do vast majority of xmas shop on Amazon, but it will now be a big fat zero.

  80. I was going to get back into commenting on Cif (I am really bored) but I found that I just kept on wanting to say 'fuck off, you are a twat'.

    I think I will leave it.

  81. To be fair to Amazon, the Wikileaks stuff did contravene the terms and conditions of its storage services as described by Computerworld in a piece here. I'm not sure what legal trouble that might have got it into in the US.

    It'll be interesting to see what it says when it gets around to making an official statement.

  82. Afternoon all

    @Hi Colin-we haven't 'met'!

    @There was a discussion here last night about dreams .Well i dreamt last night that i'd won the lottery and indeed i have.For having checked my numbers i see i'm now the pround winner of a tenner.Wasn't quite what i had in mind in my dream but 'every little helps' Small steps!

  83. Wheyhey, go Paul, don't spend it all on the one pint ; )

    I had a dream some guys were having a picnic in a toilet, i said, in the dream, 'Don't eat where you shit..' I woke up and the cat had peed in the kitchen...

    #hums Twilight Zone feme tune#

  84. "It would actually be nice if there was someone who could come on here and challenge the views without the rampant fuckwitedness."

    What, you mean adhere to your formula: "fuck off, you are a twat"?

  85. Fuck off you are a twat.

    And that is the last time I will dance in your performance of twatishness.

    Get some help or fuck off, your choice.

  86. Peter, from that article:

    Another clause may have also been invoked. "You represent and warrant that you own or otherwise control all of the rights to the content," Amazon's terms continue, "[and] that ... the content you supply ... will not cause injury to any person or entity."

    On Monday, Secretary of State Hillary Rodham Clinton said, "Whatever are the motives in disseminating these documents, it is clear that releasing them poses real risks to real people, and often to the very people who have dedicated their own lives to protecting others."

    Just because Hillary sez it puts people in danger does not make it so. As I understand it, the names of any such people have been redacted.

    The cables have caused embarrassment to the US, and that is why they are so incensed.

    The 'rights to the contents' are perhaps debatable but that is weaselly on Amazon's part. Are they pretending they didn't know what WikiLeaks was when they took it on?

  87. Yey!!! Colin in the house! (You've been much missed.) Big up to all the northern massive!

    Jenni, fighting with Bracken can be fun. Even if you're as thick as I am, you can make him upset, very quickly.

  88. habib

    I hear it finally got round to snowing in Salford yesterday. How's it looking?

  89. habib

    I wasn't even talking to him. :)

    Peter I am now sayiny you are a twat.

    Have at me.


  90. @Thauma

    Amazon doesn't do pre-vetting of web service users, as I understand it; if you have a valid credit card, you can buy the service. But if something dubious is brought to its attention and it does nothing about it, then it becomes legally liable (as YouTube does if it doesn't take down copyright infringing material).

  91. watch out, he's going to blow!

  92. In fact, I wouldn't be surprised if Amazon came out with a statement saying that it took Wikileaks down as a precaution after it was warned about the content, but that after taking advice it was now willing to put it back up again. That sort of thing's happened before, in the US and elsewhere.

    As I say, it'll be interesting to see what the official line is. I haven't found it yet.

  93. MsChin, it's been snowing on and off since Tuesday. Everything looks pretty here in Stretford - the grey drabness has been changed into icing covered drabness.

  94. To Leni and all his other mates on here -- the last MikeBach post at CiF was 28th September...

    Woohoo! - I'm properly snowed in, no chance of any shopping but all stored up . Food, firewood and 150bollsa cidre.

    Off to make some "pit_props" for my polytunnel. It delights the inner child, but snow is heavy and bend 30mm steel pipe like wet spaghetti.

  95. It's also interesting that Wikileaks went to Amazon in the first place because of its resilience and scalability, which gave Assange some protection against the DDOS attacks his site was under at the time. Handy stuff, cloud computing.

  96. Have another beer Peter (yes us alkies recognise our own).

    Go on melt down it will help

    Apart from that, fuck off.

  97. From -Eva Wilt - " Re MikeBach--

    Reading Mike's blog, looks like he's been engaged in battles with ATOS/DWP since then (28/9) and also been in hospital starting radiotherapy on the 11th Nov."

  98. I refuse to belittle you, jennifera - alcoholic, unstable, unemployable woman. You've enough on your plate.

  99. Nice.

    I hope Mike Bach is ok as well. :(

  100. I think you've just belittled yourself, Bracks. I really didn't think you could. You have hidden depth.

  101. Bracken, you really are a worthless, thick cunt. And if that is indeed you in the pdf, how employable are you as a failed criminal?

  102. Petulant, shouty, red-faced and dim,
    poor Bracken imagines it's all about him;
    amusing enough, though a
    child could have told ya
    That nothing melts quite
    like an all-chocolate soldier.

  103. I refuse to belittle you whilst I am belitting you.


  104. As one of the most unflappable members of the UT i would like to propose a truce so that people can enjoy this classic from Alice Clarke

  105. ..seconds away, as you join us for another thrilling game of...

    Fish In a Barrel.

    Holding the Shotgun, Jenn! & with the AK it's Habib!

  106. Unflappable Paul

    gliding is the thing - takes less energy.

    Plenty of hot air currents to keep you aloft - here and on waddya.

  107. Is it just me, or was Prince William trying to pretend that he's "street" during his World Cup Presentation?

  108. Hi hey habib Thaumaturge and Paul.
    Just seen a Robin, you never see more than one because they hate each other and one in ten die in beak to beak combat.
    Not very Christmassy is it?
    Bit like here.

  109. Sorry Pete you need to try harder, I'm not bothered at all.

    Lots of things can make me cry and get upset but you didnt.

    Bad luck, try harder, say aomething about my famiy why don't you

  110. PeterB

    Come on, that was unworthy of you. You're more of a gent than that.

  111. Turminder, I'm just the kind of person to bring a Kalashnikov to a paper cut fight. :-)

  112. It used to be the thing (<C18th ?) to catch and kill a Robin, and leave it on your sweetheart's doorstep. There's romance eh?

  113. Peter

    Just read your last to Jenni.

    pretty low- despicable even.

  114. Wills is proper gangsta!!

    And, as it happens, a Rolls is the shit for drive-bys...

  115. Colin

    Never knew that about robins. Mind you, the resident blackbird in my garden has been known to see off the competition for food in harsh weather.

  116. I can't help thinking that people like P-Brax who can only resort - day after day, week after week - to vicious and spiteful ad hom to try and get their point across deserve our sympathy.

    For someone to be that bitter and twisted, not to mention misanthropic, they must really be suffering in their lives.

  117. Head bowed, Bracken stood in the dock
    The beak said "I'm inclined to be lenient:
    Our prisons are bursting with sad, oafish cock
    To add one more would be most inconvenient

    Instead, you shall go
    Where you can do no harm;
    Where your boorish ill-manners
    And lack of all charm;
    Your absence of backbone,
    Your dishonesty,
    Won't be noticed:
    10 years on Comment is Free.

    MsChin-What on earth made you think that Broken was ever a gentleman? He's a seedy crook who was rejected even by the degraded scum of New Labour. 'Commodities trader', my arse...if he's not living off his wife's money, I'll eat my laptop.

  118. >>to vicious and spiteful ad hom to
    >>try and get their point across

    The vicious and spiteful ad hom is their only point. Sad much?

    Fixed that fer youse BB : )

  119. MsChin

    If you put a red pompom - or similar - in your garden your resident robin will soon show you just how aggressive he is.

    Blackbirds are very territorial - our residents square up to infiltrators in a very determined manner. All ffet and flapping wings - in Spring and summer they mark their bounds by singing from vantage points around the area they consider their own.

  120. Props JC. Hang on JC? Knows about Elric... It's a web-bardic incarnation of... ; )

  121. afternoon all

    Am currently fulminating about cluster bombs. the leaks have shown what a total travesty signing the treaty was.

    British and American officials colluded in a plan to hoodwink parliament over a proposed ban on cluster bombs

    I'd link to the piece (front page of groan) but am up at my sons and having to use a horrible clunky old system because one of the kids melted his laptop.

    Apparentlythat shithead D Millipede, who was foreign sec at the time approved the use of a 'loophole'so the yanks could store cluster munitions on British territory. What the fuck is the point of signing a treaty banning the things if all you do is wangle a way for an ally to continue using them with your collusion?

    People are still dying in Vietnam from all the cluster bombs they dropped but didn't explode at the time. Parts of the world are littered with them and will be for generations to come. A despicable weapon and please Brakkers, don't come on here telling me they're a valuable battlefield weapon - they're a crime against humanity!

  122. Oh, and hello Stoaty - nice to see you back.

  123. jack

    I've met PeterB, at a UT meet-up. He is an interesting man in many respects, although I disagree with him about some things.

  124. Sheff

    Agree about cluster bombs - and flechettes.

    there is no defence for them - sly move to store them in ships of the Chagoss islands so the US could move them to load into their death dealing bombers.

    e should the US out and return the island to the rightful owners.

    All is lies and deceit - in the name of humanity, transparency and honour.

    Why have we let the world be taken over by these bastards ?

  125. Grr-- We should throw the US out

  126. My late friend once said we had been "sleep-walking into disaster", Leni. Sums it up nicely,

  127. Leni

    We should throw the US out I agree but none of our grovelling sycophantic politicos have the balls or the inclination. They still harbour the fantasy that we're a partnership of equals although they must know we're not. Still we now have the evidence that what's said in public is unlikely to be the truth.

    We let them spy on our European partners from Menwith Hill - in fact the Germans said they'd lost billions in business from US spying on them from MH. Not sure how many bases they have here any more but there used to be over 100.

  128. I'm not sufferring, BB. I'm chilled. I'm moderately modest in my lifestyle. I'm garrulous. I'm engaged with stuff. I'm an exceptionally loving father. My kids are well balanced. I'm a Brit in France within not an enemy within sight.

    I played back jennifer's self-played record on UT. Big deal. You and others spew hollow comforts. That makes you better than me, eh? Actually, no. It makes you suffocating, dishonest soothsayers.

    You want an example of ad hom - take this:

    "He's a seedy crook who was rejected even by the degraded scum of New Labour. 'Commodities trader', my arse...if he's not living off his wife's money, I'll eat my laptop."

    But as quickly as you overlook that crap, I laugh at it, too. And that's because its author is empty. So empty, indeed, that he needs to anathematise me in pursuit of some pathetic online role.

  129. Oh dear. Peter Bracken is called a ludricous oaf, a fuckwit, a twat, and an alkie by various posters. When he reacts angrily he is called a worthless thick cunt, a failed criminal, despicable etc and is roundly condemned by the usual chorus of self-righteous hypocrites.

    You people are sooo funny! Beyond parody.

  130. Leni

    Thread just gone up about employment in Merthyr

  131. Hello Luke

    i referred to Peter's remark as despicable - not to Peter himself. There is a difference.

  132. Son is out in the garden building an igloo with the kids...it's quite impressive. Plastic boxes for the formers and a flat spatula to perfect each snow brick.

  133. Bracks and Luke in the same place at the same time? Not good. (Think cybermen and daleks.)

    "Wills is proper gangsta!!"
    James, ha ha, I can see him and Harry cruising in their Rolls, playing "Regulate" with their army issue revolvers in their laps.

  134. Leni

    Just posted a link for you to a CiF piece on employment in Merthyr but it seems to have vanished.

  135. The only role-playing I see is by Bracken. His (unintentionally) hilarious piece for the Groan ("...the wind whips my linen suit around my calves as the silken roar of the bike blahblahblah") so ably parodied by Jay Reilly is a case in point.

    Only a man completely absorbed in a role could fail to see how risible a work of utter tosh that was. Bracken shared The Bracken Movie in his head with us and being a stupid man, didn't understand how revealing it was.

    Poor Bracken is a textbook example of an inadequate: the endless hollow bluster, the chest-beating, the abuse, the massive (and baseless) self-regard, the neurotic fear of any hint of self-doubt, the motorbike-substitute for his tiny penis etc etc.

    And as if that weren't enough, Bracken must suffer the last indignity: the support of the tedious luke. I could almost feel sorry for the man...almost.

    12 months on a Mississippi chain-gang would improve Bracken out of all recognition.

    Just trying to help, old son.

  136. Thanks MsChin - will go find.

  137. @Luke

    Yes, Luke, and of course anything said to Bracken was completely unprovoked.

    Perhaps you, he and Bitey would like to find somewhere a bit more private for your little mutual-admiration threesome?

  138. There's bluff and there's bluff, jack. Once thing's certain; you'd be calling me a cunt as you watched the Titanic sink from your lifeboat.

  139. MsChin

    I accept that P-Brax may well be a nice enough sort in the flesh on the basis that you and Sheff (and BW I think?) have said so and you are all people I like and trust.

    But I do wish he would jack in the online spitefulness if that's true... he really is the worst kind of troll.

  140. BB

    You get two for one with Brakkers - Dr Jekyll IRL and Mr Hyde online.

  141. I wasn't defending Bracken - I was just pointing out that he reacted to personal abuse, and that while some posters here were happy to condemn him, they were silent on the insults that spike and jennifera30 and others were throwing around. Sheer hypocrisy.

    And Spike, you can't really be as stupid as you appear, can you? Is there anything at all that you can actually understand, or do you just wilfully misintrerpret any comment that you don't like?

  142. So footie world cup 2018 going to Russia. Wonder how much that cost the alpha dog and his pups.

  143. Hello everyone; this is from yesterday's "Indie" by Hamish McRae:

    "Marry someone who can do the maths

    A final word about numeracy. Research published today in The Economic Journal shows that the more numerate people are, the richer they become. Studies in both the UK and US show that if you adjust for everything else – literacy, social background and so on – people who can do their sums have more wealth than those who cannot. The US study is particularly stark. Couples where both spouses could give the correct answer to three maths questions had an average wealth of $1.7m. Couples who got all the answers wrong were worth only $200,000. Moral: if you can't do maths chose a partner who can – and let them take the financial decisions."

    Oh well, at least now I know why I'm always skint!

  144. This might interest those of you who are interested in sexualities and gender. Zucker, who offers to 'cure' children of their homosexuality has been invited to give a keynote to this years BPS congress. Zucker is also a leading light in the development of 'Paraphilic Coercive Disorder' (being turned on by sexual coercion) for inclusion in the new Diagnostic and Statistical Manual - so men who rape aren't rapists anymore, they have a mental health problem....

    Anyway, there are various protests being organised. If you're in the area (near Manchester) or involved with organisations who have an interest in such issues, you may wish to spread the word.


    I'm pretty revolted that the BPS has chosen to honour such a person.

  145. "they were silent on the insults that spike and jennifera30 and others were throwing around. Sheer hypocrisy."

    Not really, Luke, because if someone comes around here acting like a twat, they're going to be called one. It's not all that complicated.

  146. Zucker’s views suggest that boys who play with dolls or girls who dress like boys might grow up to be gay or transgender.

    Man's a nutter and shouldn't be given the time of day - I really did think this 'aversion' stuff he practices had been knocked on the head professionally. By his account I should be a butch dyke having spent my childhood in boys clothes (three younger brothers and a thrifty Ma), reading Biggles and playing with guns. Had zilch effect on my sexuality.

  147. Sheff

    Sounds more like Dr Jeckyll and Mr Heckle to me :o)

  148. BB (& others), I have indeed met Peter in real life, he was perfectly genial, got stuck in to a good debate, got the beers in and has a great car. He was also 180 degrees diametrically out of whack on every single issue of course. Heh heh.

    Listen, we can be quite vociferous and dismissive here, but play the ball I say, not the man, unless he's taken a low shot at you, in which case, choks away - all part of the fun! It's hardly bullying eh?

    Hope this gibberish helps. Frankly, I maintain there is no moderation required here, and I feel like I'm talking up some rules. I'm not. Let it all hang out I say.

  149. BPS - British Psychological Society

  150. Thanks, meerkatjie. That man is dangerous, imho.

    No chance of me getting there tomorrow (can't get off me own drive yet!) but will spread the word.

  151. Samuel T. Cohen, Inventor, developer and defender of the Neutron Bomb, has died. Good.

    Designed to kill people and leave buildings and infrastructure undamaged - a real bastards wet dream.

  152. BPS = British Psychological Society, Chekhov.

    I can't quite believe he's addressing congress. That the society has *paid* for him to come and talk about his 'work'. Grrrr.

    In other news, I just got all animated and wrote far more personal stuff all over cif than I should have. Must stop doing that. Really wish there was a delete button!

  153. Meerkatjie - what a very disturbing individual.

    On Cif, you can flag your own comment and ask the mods to delete it.

  154. I didn't know that, thanks Thauma... Probably too late now, realistically, but I'll remember that for future rants.

  155. Not too late when there's an archivist around, Meerkatjie.... I'd do it if you're concerned.

  156. stoaty - poppies! snap. deano put up some great pics on the gallery, have had a crack at a couple of them.

    merrkatjie - so, this zucker twat needs to be added to my 'absolutely no time for' list?

    (it's a short list. it goes:
    Charles "cock" Murray
    Glenn Beck
    The Pope)

    (i find it easier to stay focussed with a small group.)

  157. now, i like football, but the world cup bid being the first item on the news is just f-ing ridiculous.

    there is stuff going on. lots of stuff...

  158. Desperately sad. Dave Cameron, wotta fool fronting it with that berkprince wotsit.

  159. Philippa B
    Hah - you mean that story about the most corrupt sporting body in the world giving he most corrupt country in the world a massively lucrative business opportunity ? LOL. I don't give a shite about it not coming here, but Jesus - Spain and Portugal were a cynch. Oh well.

    Meanwhile, to take our minds off sad news in these difficult times, here's some classic
    German Opera

  160. quote !"Desperately sad". "Bitterly disappointed" too just now

  161. mind you, picking russia then qatar suggests that the world cup is going to get much more interesting in future, at least off the pitch.

    what, did fifa think that as s africa didn't result in the rape / murder / civil unrest feared, that they can from now on utterly ignore the security warnings they get?

  162. bitterweed - i would be immensely surprised if there isn't at least one bomb goes off. purely down to greed.

  163. i swear, i read that first as meaning that a communicative dolphin was going to start blowing stuff up.

    haven't even finished first glass yet.

  164. The Russian government said it has the money to put the WC on - pity they haven't considered spending it on their people's needs. Someone will be making an absolute fortune though.

    I'm glad its not coming to the UK - if we can afford to pay for something like the WC then we can afford to find jobs for the unemployed and look after our most vulnerable people properly - who should come first anyway.

    I know someone will say - well it would've generated a lot of money and jobs but people need proper, secure jobs that aren't dependant upon some one off sporting carnival.

  165. "haven't even finished first glass yet. "

    Sorry, old habit.

  166. Though I would have quite liked to have seen the World Cup come here, on balance I think this is a good thing as it has made the corruption in Fifa so stark.

    And that is a good thing because it makes it so much easier to point and laugh the next time anyone starts going on about how healthy and inspiring "sport" is.

    Still, wish we had the World Cup instead of the Olympics.

  167. meerkatjie - just want to say, whether you want it to stay up or not, that you 5.16 post on the Wanner thread was immensely powerful and moving and thank you for that.

    and you got the last word, before closure. well done.

  168. luke

    Oh dear. Peter Bracken is called a ludricous oaf, a fuckwit, a twat, and an alkie by various posters. When he reacts angrily he is called a worthless thick cunt, a failed criminal, despicable etc and is roundly condemned by the usual chorus of self-righteous hypocrites.

    You people are sooo funny! Beyond parody.

    Well he's got off lightly - not having been accused of paedophilia, despite having easy access to children at home.

    The UT insulters are slipping up in failing to seize the opportunity.

    Must be the bad weather.

  169. I was speaking to a young Russian lady tonight and she was quite sad that they got it because she knew so much money would be hived off by interested parties and backroom deals.

    Like in Sochi, for the winter olympics they are building a road to the venue and it has been worked out that it would be cheaper to pave it with caviar than what it currently costs.

  170. Seconded for Meerkatjie's posts on the SA thread. It is like pissing against the wind, though.

    I find it so upsetting that the Graun attracts so many out and out racist assholes.

    And when you try and call them on it, they just talk about their "concerns about immigration". WTF? It's an article about South Africa!!

    No shock about the World Cup - the corruption is beyond parody, really. Ironic that it goes to "Mafia Russia" really...

  171. Hello all..... just been trying to re-align myself a bit. Scived off today as there was just too much travel disruption and I didn't fancy getting stuck in bloody Rotherhithe and walking back to Brixton - I could have worked locally, but it was bloody minus 1 and the pavements and roads off the beaten track are extremely hazardous..... so, twas a bit of loight housewerk and loight ciffing but not much else.

  172. Montana.... is that a Monitor Lizard? I love those prehistoric beauties.....

  173. @LaRit

    My bloody neighbour has just spent hours scraping the snow off the pavement outside his house - it'll be a sodding skating rink after it freezes again. I bet it's just to make me feel guilty as well.

    I think staying in is a wise choice.

  174. Hello - snow landed with a vengeance during the night - left for school at 7.30am to help answer phones, & kept getting distracted by how beautiful and silent everything was. Bit miffed that son has camera in Australia as camera on phone not that great, but his need currently greater than mine...

  175. Just been down pub, heard some jokes.


    I went to buy the chrimbo tree today. The lad at the till asked me, 'Are ye puttin' this up yerself?' I said, 'No, ya sick bastard, it's going in the living room.'


    Farmer gets a phone call from his son.

    - Dad, I've just run over a pig with the tractor. It's not dead, it's squealing an all; what should I do?

    - Ah shit, son, just shoot it and bury it.

    20 minutes later, another phone call.

    - OK, Dad, I've done that. Now what should I do with the fuckin speed camera and Land Rover?

  176. spike / Shallcross

    Perhaps you, he and Bitey would like to find somewhere a bit more private for your little mutual-admiration threesome?

    And speaking of paedophilia here's the PCF position from Shallcross:

    Let's keep comment as free as possible
    backtothepoint's comment 9 April 2010 1:42PM

    So while we may be appalled at the idea of a man in his fifties having sex with a girl of nine, it seems to have been perfectly acceptable according to the local customs of the time.

    Only a man could post such a pathetic defence of child rape.

    So any more local customs you'd like to come here to defend Shallcross?

    How about a treatise in defence of FGM?

  177. Hey LaRit

    I am skiving too. I am a tad cheesed off that I won't be able to get in tomorrow either. Really getting stir crazy now, with no work...

  178. LOLing at those jokes, thaum - especially the last one :O)

  179. No skiving for me. Ten minute walk down the road to work.

    It's OK though. Cos I get to sit in a nice warm office whilst ordering minions to go out and work in the cold.

    "But the garden is covered in snow!" They wail.

    "So what," I shrug, "just sweep it off with a dustpan and brush before you start the weeding."

    Mwuuuuaaa ha ha ha ha....

  180. good work too from BB, course! the stamina...

  181. Thauma:

    They're deadly but enticingly cuddly.... a mate of ours was in Thailand a couple of years ago and they were staggering back to their hut one night totally pissed, when out of the undergrowth, across the path walked one of those buggers.... he sobered-up....respect is due to the giant lizards!