15 January 2011

15/01/11


Shallow understanding from people of good will is more frustrating than absolute misunderstanding from people of ill will.
-Dr. Martin Luther King, Jr.

281 comments:

  1. Morning all. Will be leaving for Christmas V2.0 around lunchtime and then probably offline for a week, so have a good one! Keep things crossed for no further weather-related arsery / flash industrial action, as if I don't get home this time, there will be a sulk on of epic proportions...

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  2. morning tutti!

    good luck philippa and enjoy, V2.0 hear that generally tis better than V1.0.... well they've tweaked it or somat and you don't get the crap TV!

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  3. thanks gandolfo - am just hoping that there aren't any further bugs after the switchover...

    right - packing.

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  4. right - packed. fags purchased, lengthy note in bad french written for coloc in case of emergencies, cab booked.

    questions:
    what have i forgotten?
    why is nobody else awake?

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  5. Morning.

    Have a safe journey, Philippa, and enjoy your holiday here.

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  6. 'what have i forgotten?'

    Passport? Tickets? Electric toaster? Cuddly toy?

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  7. have passport, have tickets, have crosswords and spare biro, book, can buy sweets at airport...

    remembered to pack socks this time, so that's good.

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  8. emergency chocolate and lighter for fags nowt worse thn having ciggies and no lighter....

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  9. Ah yes, gandolfo, being lighter-less is a nightmare.

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  10. "emergency chocolate and lighter for fags nowt worse thn having ciggies and no lighter...."

    Love it - you can always rely on UT for considered and sound advice.

    Have a good time PhilB

    PCC good to see you around UT again - 0/

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  11. Chin - may your Meadowhell trauma be minimal...

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  12. *rubs eyes* How come I mised the feminism thread by Suzanne Moore?

    deano!

    I'm thinking of ways to get out of the trip to Meadowhell as we speak ... I may also just wait in the car park for the offspring to run & get what they need. I can claim it's on health grounds.

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  13. hi deano hope you're ok.......

    either i find myself without ciggie papers or lighter always have the tobacco though....strange that........

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  14. Morning all

    Bon voyage, Phil! Hope you enjoy Christmas v2.0 x

    Just browsing CiF atm and feeling lazy even though I know I have got work to do.

    Hands up anyone who thinks I will leave all my work til tomorrow afternoon?

    o/

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  15. Gandolfo

    Thank god for nice barmaids that trust you with their lighters.. :o)

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  16. Morning all! Guess you've gone now PB but good journey anyhow!

    Good to hear from you Deano hope you are OK!

    Weather gloomy down here and my tendency to want to sleep through January has been joined by an attack of the winter blues (SAD? should I get one of those lamp thingies?).

    I need some sunshine!

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  17. Well, the feminist thread has descended into the usual 'ugly old hag = feminist' tirade from the willy wavers.

    Good comment on there from jentho @ 10.38 though, about capital's exploitation of changing gender relations.

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  18. BB
    "Thank god for nice barmaids that trust you with their lighters.. :o)"

    QED...!! an excellent example!!!

    thanks for passing on me email BB

    Bitters
    thanks for the pino daniele from last night...translated the title means "don't pissed me off..." I hum often this very song


    oh James
    ta for reading the millipede article you saved 5 years off my life......


    right that's my thanks i love you everyone oscar speech done......

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  19. spare lighter!

    this is the value of the UT, cheers all...

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  20. I hum often this very song........?WTF?????

    i think i'm writing italo-english.....anyone available to save me out there???

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  21. I'm fine friends - have finally shaken off the tedious and lingering cold/flu bug.

    Next job is to deal with my 2010 New Year resolution - get thee behind me procrastination. I really must complete the brew-house that I started many moons ago

    ...and then I'm to start the search of the dog rescue places for a new companion for Mungo.

    Regards to all.

    laters

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  22. and just to say, deano, that the painting based on your lovely poppy / barley photo went down very well as a present for the oisette, so keep putting the material up on the gallery!

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  23. Actually I think it was close of 2009 when I resolved to deal with my propensity to procrastinate.....

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  24. Have a great Xmas 2.0, Philippa.

    MsChin

    That Suzanne Moore piece is a prime example of what we were talking about, where a poor ATL piece gets a poor response. I was going to make a detailed comment, but gave up; as someone said on the thread, it wasn't about me. Apparently, I'm not the type of man she's talking about, and so I have nothing to add, and if I do say something it can only be in solidarity with those 'horrible, horrible' men she is talking about.

    Depressing.

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  25. Incidentally, reading Bidisha's ludicrous new 'thought for the nanosecond' did have one useful side-effect; it led me to her own website. Where I find these entirely consistent arguments:

    Bidisha, January 3 2011:

    "Women writers are far less likely than our male counterparts to make decent money from a book contract, be covered by newspapers, magazines, radio and TV outlets that help promote our books, be stocked in bookshops, shortlisted for or awarded prizes in any genre, mentioned in recommendations and best-of lists, studied at school and university level, honoured in our careers, offered prestigious speaking or teaching opportunities or remembered and canonised once we are gone. I accept that. I’ve processed it. I get it, from experience: nobody will help us, even if they look sympathetic when we complain."


    Bidisha, October 30 2010:

    "Yet I know from our event and from countless other retreats, courses, workshops and classes I have participated in that women far outweigh men as attendees. In fiction especially, this reflects what industry research has demonstrated for decades: that women are the overwhelming majority of consumers of fiction, as well as the vast majority of writers, agents, editors, publishing company directors, PRs and other industry stalwarts. It’s always a pleasure to work with and for these women, no matter what stage they’re at in their work, and to feel oneself to be part of a community of writers and readers. Something I have noticed, too, is that these women, who are the very backbone and dominant force of the entire industry, read writers of both sexes with fair and equal openness."

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  26. peterj - agreed. some good comments in there, but a lot snark, on both of the outlying ends of the 'getting along with other people' spectrum - it simultaneously excludes reasonable male posters from the debate and includes them in the 'bad group'...

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  27. PeterJ

    You've hit the nail on the head there. When so many people turn up on those threads with the specific aim of derailing them because the article was so piss poor that it asls to be derailed, the possibility of honest debate between men and women just dissipates.

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  28. right - all done, off now, wish me luck!

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  29. MsC

    Have I missed something? Is it international feminism day? The Indie have got Julie B having a go at sexism in the Beeb -

    Julie Burchill: The BBC's institutionalised bullying of women has finally been laid bare

    The thread doesn't foam with quite the same ferocity as on cif...even though it's our Jules.

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  30. Happy travelling Phillipa! Safe journey.

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  31. *waves Phil off with a hanky*

    I'm afraid I lost it with the first post that said "See? All these men are nasty and we can't talk about things nicely now" post when, let's face it, an article based on the 1970s premise that all men are bastards is bound to get up people's noses big time.

    I really do get tired of the notion that women are such poor, delicate little flowers that they have to be protected from nasty men saying things online. Yes there are some real nasty bastards out there, but there are also some really bitchy women as well. If people want a "safe space" to discuss stuff, there are plenty of blogs and fora on the internet to be able to do that. But they can't expect that to happen in a "public space".

    Sigh.

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  32. Philippa

    buona fortuna!!! in bocca al lupo!! crepa!

    (all are italian good luckisms... the last is the strangest drop dead why? boh!!)

    .....so the old adage "no news is good news" applies i guess!!

    enjoy!!

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  33. Given the circs, this is something to keep an eye on:


    Offshore Energy Raises Tension Between Lebanon and Israel

    A fast growing point of dispute between Lebanon and Israel is the oil and gas reserves in the Mediterranean Sea, a matter that could prove to be explosive if it is not resolved. Israel recently started tapping oil and gas under the eastern Mediterranean seabed after a private petrochemical company estimated the amount of fossil fuel reserves to be 450 billion cubic meters.

    On Monday, an Israeli naval vessel approached the Lebanese coast and prompted Beirut to put its Armed Forces on high alert. This incident occurred while the vessel was deployed to protect new offshore drilling by Israel. These repeated altercations are causing worry that they might be used by Hezbollah or Israel as a pretext to wage a new war.

    Some Lebanese experts argue that Israel is exploiting resources within Lebanese territories, but Israel has denied this. Hezbollah minister Ali Shami accused Tel Aviv of breaking international law by allowing energy firms to explore for offshore gas in the absence of a sea border agreement. Indeed, Israel refuses to share with the UN any maritime borders documents. While Lebanon is a signatory of the relevant maritime border treaty, the "UN Convention on the Law of the Sea," Israel is not and refuses to ratify it.

    During his meeting with UN Secretary General Ban Ki-moon, Lebanese PM Saad Hariri urged the UN to safeguard Lebanon's rights over its natural resources and called for demarcating the maritime border between the two countries. The UN responded positively by offering to help demarcate the border. Israel's cooperation in this matter will be essential to avoid future wars over this issue.

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  34. @BB

    Yes, that kind of thing is really annoying. "Why can't we women have a nice chat about why male sexuality wants sex with child junkies in cars, how men use rape as a weapon of war, how women are driven by men to have silicone implants and watch Sex and the City 2, and how it would be better to remove all men from the streets at night rather than advise women not to walk home alone while there's an undetected murderer of women about, without having men pointing out that there might be a few problems with these lines of thinking?"

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  35. Right .. I'm off as well now. Laters people.

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  36. Sheff

    Blimey. At risk of being accused of being anti-semitic by all and sundry on CiFwatch but, what the fuck? If ever there was a rogue nation to be concerned about right now, it is Israel.

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  37. PeterJ

    They are important things to debate, and of course women should be able to debate them just amongst themselves if that is what they want to do. But, as I say, you can't expect that on a public forum.

    To draw a perhaps exaggerated analogy, it is like having a woman standing in the public square in the town with a mic, surrounded by other woman, making the points Suzanne Moore is making and then calling the local PCSO to move along any men that heckle. If you don't want men to comment, you hold your meeting in a hall somewhere and control the entry.

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  38. @Sheff

    That's an interesting development, but not particularly unusual apart from its immediate military complications. I read a while back that only a third of maritime national boundaries are currently established by law or treaty, and that there are many disputes over them worldwide as fuel resources in more accessible places decline.

    It's also possible that there could be good news for Gaza in the oil and gas exploration offshore if Hamas would pack in the rockets and come to a deal with the PA. There was a contract with British Gas on the table to exploit the field off Gaza and give the Palestinians a secure energy supply and income, but Hamas' and Israel's joint intransigence has stalled it for now.

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  39. I seriously object to being told to stay indoors because some murderous nutter is on the prowl, Peter.

    It would be great in circs like that (and in ordinary circs for that matter) if some men, (quite a few actually), would be a bit more sensitive around women when they're on the street at night and realise that, for women, they are indistinguishable from a dangerous maniac, however innocent they may in fact be - thats a cross men have to bear; we have to bear the 'is he? isn't he? cross.

    For example, a little thought might help them realise that walking close behind a woman at night isn't going to make her feel safe. It doesn't help when they pull up alongside and say - 'it's all right love, I'm not a rapist', which has happened to me.

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  40. Peter

    I don't suppose the oil/gas fields recognise maritime boundaries. Considering its such a relatively small area could have Israel, Gaza and Lebanon all sucking it out of the same source?

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  41. @Sheff

    To be fair to the police, they didn't tell women to stay indoors but advised them to avoid walking alone after dark. There's an interesting piece here, where the Bristol University's centre for gender and violence research describes the advice as "well meaning" but "impractical" and praise the University's own advice to women students. Although they do spoil things a bit by appearing to suggest that women are in more danger at home, so perhaps they ought to spend more time out.

    I've always taken care not to spook women walking alone at night, either slowing down or stopping so that I don't seem to be approaching from behind, or crossing the road, or even turning off when I don't need to. Other men I've talked to do the same, although I know it's not universal.

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  42. @Sheff

    That's possible, yes. Some of the border disputes concern wells on one side of a boundary drilling at an angle to take gas and oil from beneath the other side. It can get nasty.

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  43. I think the saddest thing of all is that we live in a society where Peter has to cross the road, stop walking or turn off down a side road, and Sheff and I have to worry about walking home on our own and get shit scared if we hear someone, who might well be Peter, walking behind us.

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  44. I've always taken care not to spook women walking alone at night, either slowing down or stopping so that I don't seem to be approaching from behind, or crossing the road, or even turning off when I don't need to.

    You're a thoughtful man Peter - I wish more were like you.

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  45. PeterJ
    "I've always taken care not to spook women walking alone at night, either slowing down or stopping so that I don't seem to be approaching from behind, or crossing the road, or even turning off when I don't need to. Other men I've talked to do the same, although I know it's not universal."

    Well I certainly don't. I am a very fast walker (I generally can't afford public transport so I tend to walk almost everywhere) so I nearly always catch up with and then overtake anyone on the street, women included. Far too many times I have been charging down the street and have to endure women looking at me as if I am a potential rapist. I sometimes have to spend 2-3 hours a day just walking from A to B, so my only thought is doing that, quickly as possible.

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  46. It has come to my attention that my username (scherfig) has been bandyopadhyay-ed about in an offensively and disrepectfully casual way on this internet blog.

    I have never used my username in my public work, do not consent to your use of my username, and eschew it for serious, private, family reasons. Please cease referring to it. I will not enter into negotiation with you about this.

    In future, if anyone here feels the need to address me or discuss me, I would be grateful if you could refer to me as 'theidiotformerlyknownasboringsmartass'.

    THIS IS NON-NEGOTIABLE!

    Thank you.

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  47. So then, regarding walking at night a question for the girls: How do you feel about a 'jogger' (yes, it is I), coming up behind you? I think I make so much huffing and puffing and foot slapping that people would in no way think I am sneaking up on them. But, OTOH, some folk do seem surprised/shocked when I come past them. I don't doubt that Charles probably walks faster than me anyway.

    So, what should I do? Cross over the road, cough cough (nasty cough you have there they say when passing), or just accept that life is never simple and anyway I am attacked by people's dogs!

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  48. Hi to all, the thread yesterday was interesting. I do drop into CiF at times but the level of debate is generally piss poor. Even the Telegraph has more polite commentary even if some are out and out red-necks (did I mention I got modded on CiF for accusing I think the whole thread of being red-necks? LOL well they were!).

    Anyway good afternoon to all and I will have to go now to the shops.

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  49. Paul, when you are up and about. Difficult though it is for me to admit to being a UT hippy, my son was born to the strains of Ommadawn by Mike Oldfield...

    Ahem.

    YES, LAUGH AT ME! ALL OF YOU! SEE IF I CARE!

    :O)

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  50. Happy shopping, Ian.

    And I hope MsChin has survived her shopping trip. Sounds like MeadowHell indeed... eeek.

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  51. I read the Suzanne Moore piece.

    Probably best that I don't comment on it!

    (Although, I did notice that, amongst the many, many themes shoe-horned into it, quite a few were ones raised here over the last 72 hours or so (including, bizarrely, Sex and The City))!!

    That is all!!

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  52. Charles

    Far too many times I have been charging down the street and have to endure women looking at me as if I am a potential rapist.

    No points for sensitivity towards fellow citizens. As I said before - given the society we live, in having women view you with caution is the cross you have to 'endure'. Imagine what its like for women - not knowing when you're bearing down on them, whether your intentions are innocent or not.

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  53. Right, at the risk of whatever.....

    Sheff,

    I get your point, I do, but:

    That last paragraph to Charles, replace the whole 'Men' thing with, say, 'Muslim'!

    Is that a fair argument; that Muslim's just have to bear the cross of being a potential terrorist!! Is it a reasonable argument, when they complain about that, to then say, 'yeah, but imagine what it's like for us, not knowing whether your intentions are innocent or not'!

    Again, I agree that it's, potentially, a sad indictment of our society, if women feel unsafe, or have to think in these terms, but I just don't think framing the issue like that is particularly fair!!

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  54. That's a fair point to make, James. I wish I knew what the solution was...

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  55. Will the real scherfig please stand up?

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  56. Sheff et al

    Men often find themselves placed in uncomfortable positions and looked at askance because of fear oif rapists and paedos.

    The local history society here has a collection of photographs going back over 100 years. Members recreate them and run exhibitions of then and now. These are popular with people looking for grand and g-grandparents in their younger days and comparing landscapes etc. Sometimes people will pose in same place as grandparents.

    One member - in his 60s, well known in area - was taking pics along the former mineral railway - now a cycle track. He snapped 3 children, told them who he was and where they could get a print of the pics. No charge involved.

    Continuing his walk he was assaulted by 2 men who accused him of being a paedo.

    Very distressed he has sworn to abandon an interest going back over 40 years. I don't know what we do about it either - normal, everyday activities coming under suspicion is horrible and very restricting.

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  57. I know BB, and I don't know what the answer is either.

    However, like with a lot of things, I think we can increase the chances of finding one if we really think carefully about how we ask the question!!

    Anyways, I have to go out for a bit.

    Have a good afternoon folks!!

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  58. I take your point James and no, of course its not fair - its awful but it is a reality and will be until we do something about it.

    As for Muslims - I've heard plenty say that, yes, they are seen by many as 'potential ' terrorists and it infuriates them - especially for example when they're singled out in airports etc. Same with young black men - who get totally pissed off with the assumption that they are potentially knife carrying muggers just because three of them are walking down the street together.

    We inflict these crosses upon ourselves and others by the way we think and behave and its all made much worse by an irresponsible media that feeds public fear - it's horrible and I hate it. We could change it if we had the will.

    If anyone said to me they had never been a victim of one of these stereotypes in thought or deed - I'd know they were a liar.

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  59. James - 'Is that a fair argument; that Muslim's just have to bear the cross of being a potential terrorist!!'

    Well firstly terrorism is very rare compared to rape James. Secondly actually if someone is behaving in a way that is a bit odd then I would worry yes - and that is totally politically incorrect I know but it is the truth.

    I went to Europe days after the bombings. Kings Cross was full of coppers tooled up with machine guns - I refused to go on the underground (don't know if it was even open but we'd already said we wouldn't) so my mum and I got a cab to the Eurostar.

    On the Eurostar were two young men. They both wore the Taqiyah and loose white smock style tops over jeans, they both had backpacks. They got on the train together and sat down in front of us. As we were about halfway in the tunnel one of them got up and moved seats - he went to the other end of the carriage and kept looking behind him all the time and looking at the other guy who was still sat in front of us.

    I began to get a bit freaked out (it wasn't just the moving seats, he was acting very oddly) - I was already jittery travelling just days after what had happened. Now my mum is not racist in the slightest and she also isn't a total panicker - unlike me - so I didn't say anything thinking she would think I was mad. Then the guy in front of us got up and moved one seat down.

    My mum just went 'oh god I don't like this'. I turned to her - thinking thank god it is not just me - and I knew I was being silly in all likelihood but the honest truth is I was scared.

    My mum and I sat there and then the other kid who had moved first time moved again! At this point my mum just said 'come on'. We got up and moved as far away from that carriage on the train as we could. The train was practially empty (I have never been on such an empty Eurostar) and we were debating whether we should report them or not and were we overreacting and being silly and were we knee jerk racists etc, etc (we hadn't seen any staff member anyway) when the train stopped.

    It must have been Calais because it was right after the tunnel. The two young men got off and immediately met up on the platform and were joking and laughing. But their behaviour on that train was odd - and it was - in my opinion - insensitive in the aftermath of what had happened.

    Does that make me racist? Does being afraid if a man comes up behind me at night make me sexist? I personally don't think so. I don't walk around town scared of Muslims I see but in that situation - their behaviour made me afraid. I am not scared of men per se but a lone man walking very close to me late at night on a dark street then yes I am.

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  60. Think I'd have felt just the same in those circs Princess (rightly or wrongly). Were they taking the piss do you think? The 'laughing and joking' on the platform suggests they might have been. In which case they were being total shits.

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  62. Sheff

    reading PCC's account my first thought was that the 2 guys were on a wind up - as you say, were this the case they were total shits.

    There are always 2 sides to these stories. The people falling under suspician will be hurt and angry - their accusers are often afraid. Only later - when something either does or does not happen can either try to assess the situation.

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  63. So this is UT? Thanks for the heads up, Mr Guillam.

    let me put it on record here too, then: you're a condescending, supercilious arse who'd lecture the scum line on his bath were it remotely sentient.

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  64. you're a condescending, supercilious arse who'd lecture the scum line on his bath were it remotely sentient.

    Oh do you think so katie60? I've always found him rather charming and intelligent.

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  65. Sheff

    I sometimes get the impression that the UT is a cyber post office for people to leave hate mail in a set of numbered boxes.

    PeterG has always been one of the most polite and intelligent posters on CiF. Being reasonable does seem to generate a lot of hatred in the less than rational.

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  66. Sheff - I do think in retrospect they were winding us up - enjoying freaking us out a bit.

    I have to say I did feel really bad for thinking it but I did think it. I think we all have certain prejudices we might not want to admit to but they are there.

    I remember years ago doing that test where you have to match words and images. The test shows that we are all - to some degrees racist and sexist in our thinking.

    I remember my friend J, who is Indian, was really upset because he'd found he was racist according to the test when we did it. But I was also found to be sexist. I can't remember what its called but I think you can do a much shorter version of it online. It is things like - you are given a word like 'emotional' and you have to hit a button that is a picture of a male or female etc. It takes most people longer to match 'men' up to 'emotional' than it does 'women' to 'emotional'. It takes people longer to match 'women' up with 'logical' than 'men' etc.

    It really does show you how deep these things run.

    James it isn't that I think all men are rapists or all men who walk around at night are either -obviously - but I do feel vulnerable if a man is walking close to me at night. Having said that I would also feel vulnerable if I had to pass a group of teenage girls at night.

    I suppose we hear of things - things that are actually quite rare - and we become scared.

    I read recently that stranger attacks on children are no more now than they were in the 40's and 50's but because of the media we think they are happening all the time so parents don't let their kids have the freedom they used to do.

    It is how the Mail convinces its readers that people on benefits are all cheats - take a steady drip, drip of storys about benefits cheats every single day and the image is it is widespread - but it is only a couple of hundred a year out of millions who claim.

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  67. Katie60 - ?? Well hello to you too. I personally think Peter G is a brilliant poster and he wrote an excellent and well thought out article, but each to their own!

    What were people saying yesterday about women being bullied online?

    Some people are nasty online full stop.

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  68. Leni

    I sometimes get the impression that the UT is a cyber post office for people to leave hate mail in a set of numbered boxes

    Isn't it just! Don't understand it myself. What possible pleasure is there in hurling annonymous abuse of the above kind? The main satisfaction of insulting people is seeing the look on their face while you're doing it.

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  69. Hate mail, Leni? I've no cause to hate anyone. Mr Guillam's condescension is not a reason for hate; it's merely a matter that satisfies even the most facile standard of observation.

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  70. I have to say I did feel really bad for thinking it but I did think it. I think we all have certain prejudices we might not want to admit to but they are there

    'Course we do Princess - its part of being a fallible human being. I know what all mine are!! Although i'll not confess them here - I'll tell you at our next get together! Its not helped, as you say, by media wind ups and gormless politicos mouthing their fatuous, insincere drivel.

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  71. Katie60

    Well, I wouldn't call your post friendly and shows very poor manners. Do you always introduce yourself by insulting people?

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  72. Katie

    Montana created a site to which everyone is welcome. Should you disagree with Peter or any other poster you are at liberty to post your reasons and counter arguments.

    Just being unpleasant bcause you can does not make a good first impression.

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  73. There is an article on The Telegraph site about bankers bonuses claiming that in the US people just aren't bothered about huge bonuses - despite then quoting a poll that shows 70% of people think they should be capped!

    Anyway in the comments below a poster has said that the media are constantly not reporting the view of real people and are trying to make out that no one cares about the growing inequality in the US - which he is arguing is patently untrue.

    He goes on to say: 'to pretend there is no dissent is an active form of suppression.'

    I thought that was brilliant. (Of course 'he' may be a 'she' and I have just been sexist again!)

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  74. despite then quoting a poll that shows 70% of people think they should be capped!
    Oh well Princess - far be it from the Telegraph to let facts get in the way of their propaganda.

    'to pretend there is no dissent is an active form of suppression.'

    Yup - it is and our masters and their fellow travellers are brilliant at it.

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  75. I think we all find ourselves having thoughts at times which we realise are an expression of something we do not normally approve of. Sheff is right when she says we are only human.

    I had a really mean thought the other day - I was stressed admittedly, but I was waiting at the Marsden with my dad, and there was an Eastern European woman almost shouting at one of the staff, complaining that they wouldn't pay for a taxi for her because she wasn't prepared to wait for transport. She was clearly quite distressed, but the thought flitted across my mind for a nano-second that she should stop being so rude because she would probably have to pay for her treatment "where she came from" - I shocked myself, because it is really not like me to be like that, in fact I am usually the absolute opposite as most people know. But we are all capable of reverting to a particular animalistic thought process when push comes to shove.

    I think the main difference though is that we know in our hearts that we mean no harm by them and wouldn't dream of actually behaving in a sexist/racist/whatever way, much less be proud of ourselves for it. And we keep feral instinct in check.

    Oh and welcome to Katie60. Nice of you to come along and whine at someone who hardly ever posts here - which is a shame because I for one have always found him to be intelligent, erudite and polite in his discourse. Pity we can't say the same for you.

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  76. BB

    i agree - thoughts which we would rather not have can creep in almost unnoticed.

    In the example I gave of the photographer G.

    I know him and his family - he wife was distressed and angry.

    If, however, we look at from the other side - your child comes home, tells you a strange man has taken their pic and invited them to call at a given adress to collect it do you think 'this man is grooming children, trying to lure them to his house?'

    ReplyDelete
  77. how could you possibly live up to enviable parental standards like Amy Chua's Bitey asked yesterday.
    Well, here's a little tip for all you bad, inadequate mothers here:

    Amy Chua was in a restaurant, celebrating her birthday with her husband and daughters, Sophia, seven, and Lulu, four. "Lulu handed me her 'surprise', which turned out to be a card," writes Chua in her explosive new memoir, Battle Hymn of the Tiger Mother. "More accurately, it was a piece of paper folded crookedly in half, with a big happy face on the front. Inside, 'Happy Birthday, Mummy! Love, Lulu' was scrawled in crayon above another happy face. I gave the card back to Lulu. 'I don't want this,' I said. 'I want a better one – one that you've put some thought and effort into. I have a special box, where I keep all my cards from you and Sophia, and this one can't go in there.' I grabbed the card again and flipped it over. I pulled out a pen and scrawled 'Happy Birthday Lulu Whoopee!' I added a big sour face. … 'I reject this.'"

    Sounds good, doesn't it?

    ReplyDelete
  78. I think it's true that everyone makes assumptions - whether positive or negative - but also that some seem to be more acceptable than others - so for example it's more acceptable to assume a man may be a rapist or a paedophile than to assume than a benefit claimant may be a scrounger or someone middle-class may be smug, blinkered and uncaring.
    Maybe the difference comes in where personal safety is involved - as in PCC's example - but should that make it any more acceptable?

    I'm just thinking aloud really, and most probably talking a pile of steaming crap - blame it on brainfreeze, I'm wallowing in coursework!

    ReplyDelete
  79. "I for one have always found him to be intelligent, erudite and polite in his discourse....Pity we can't say the same for you."

    I neither need nor seek your approval, BeautifulBurnout. I'm applying a judgement that is probably beyond your prejudice - to say nothing of your competence - to comprehend.

    ReplyDelete
  80. Fucking hell, scherf. That woman is an abomination and doesn't deserve to have kids!

    Hey Shaz - hope the studying is going well xx

    ReplyDelete
  81. Scherfig,

    I read an article on Amy Chua yesterday and Larkin kept spinning in my head:

    They fuck you up, your mum and dad.
    They may not mean to, but they do.
    They fill you with the faults they had
    And add some extra, just for you.


    Horrendous parenting.

    ReplyDelete
  82. I neither need nor seek your approval, BeautifulBurnout. I'm applying a judgement that is probably beyond your prejudice - to say nothing of your competence - to comprehend.

    Hmmm.... pompous and condescending to add to ill mannered. Pity you're not interested in having a decent conversation Katie60. We already have a house troll, we don't really need another.

    ReplyDelete
  83. Hey, BB. Submission date, Wed 19th. Still feels as though I've got masses to do - really getting me down now.

    ReplyDelete
  84. Indeed, BB and Duke. But we must be very careful here - cultural relativism and all that. Who can say that Chinese parents who treat their four-year-olds in that way are any better or worse than us? We must reserve moral judgment.

    ReplyDelete
  85. scherf

    I hope there's a smiley at the end of that sentence. Not least that she is living in the US and married to an American (what in hell's name does her husband think she is doing to the kids?)

    Oh and Katie - pompous condescending woman comes onto website to allege occasional poster is pompous and condescending. As the Daily Heil would say, you couldn't make it up...

    Jog on, there's a love.

    ReplyDelete
  86. Shaz - Keep your chin up. It is horrendous when you are near a deadline but still have loads to do!

    Scherfig - ''I pulled out a pen and scrawled 'Happy Birthday Lulu Whoopee!' I added a big sour face. … 'I reject this.'" ''

    I am genuinely shocked by that. I haven't read any of her articles. That is appallingly nasty behaviour. And to a child so young.

    Right all I am off. Time for a rest.

    ReplyDelete
  87. Gawd scherf.... her daughters drawing has to be saleable at Southeby's before she'll accept it? And she's actually proud of this? Lets hope the filial chickens come home to roost when her are unfortunate children are grown up and can make their own decisions.

    ReplyDelete
  88. "A vapid article from the pen of stuffed shirt Peter Guillam has excited Cif’s gullible coterie of New Labour bashers."

    Now who could possibly be the master of such mangling prose?

    ReplyDelete
  89. Scherfig,

    fair point. Although I think parenting and views on parenting are much more a personal than cultural choice. I would be interested to see to waht extent parenting like this is commonplace

    On the opposite end of the spectrum to Chua. I was recently reading about the theories and life of Alexander Sutherland Neill and his theories on education and personal freedom for children.

    He founded Summerhill school which works on the principle that children learn best when not compelled to learn with happiness and freedom being the central tenets. The school runs along democratic lines and students do not need to attend lessons if they don’t feel like it and have huge persoanl freedoms as long as they do not hurt others.

    The last OFSTED inspection in 2007 gave it the thumbs up however, it is fee paying and selective so they can decide “who they give the freedom to”. I really cannot see it applying to the state system somehow.

    Still, Neill was an iconoclast in era where children were seen and not heard and he did cause enormous controversy during his lifetime. His theories on childhood happiness, freedom and education still make for interesting reading today.

    ReplyDelete
  90. BB, I rather hoped that a smiley wasn't necessary. But the point is valid, nonetheless.

    I would have thought that the fact that her husband was American was irrelevant. Her book appears to be championing a 'Chinese' way of parenting.

    Can we judge and condemn her? I would hope so, but many people would not, for the reasons I've stated.

    ReplyDelete
  91. Sheff

    A house troll! Reminds me of Dobby in the Harry Potter books (although he wasn't a troll).

    I think Bitey has got himself a new nick...

    ReplyDelete
  92. Your Grace

    We have a Steiner school an hour or so from here, and a couple of people I know moved over that way to be able to send their kids there.

    I have to say that if I could have done that, fee paying or not, I would have found a way because I really like their ethos about educating the child completely as opposed to just pushing them through academic hoops.

    ReplyDelete
  93. Our class made little felt Christmas stockings for a display before Christmas; admittedly some of the sewing wasn't great, but they looked really good - one of the kids asked if they could take them home at the end of term, & I said yes, & was he going to hang it on his Christmas tree? He said that his mother wouldn't let him - it wouldn't be good enough, or match the colour scheme. Not as hurtful as Scherfig's example, but still pretty sad.

    ReplyDelete
  94. Re chinese mother - nothing like making your child feel inadequate and rejected to spur them on to greater efforts - or make them give up entirely.

    Nil desperandum Shaz - you'll get there. x

    ReplyDelete
  95. Thanks, people. Off to carry on banging head against brick wall...

    ReplyDelete
  96. Shaz

    That is pretty sad, isn't it? Makes you wonder what priorities people have.

    Xmas decs colour-co-ordinated with the curtains vs Making my lad feel proud of something he has done himself seems a bit of a no-brainer to me, but hey...

    ReplyDelete
  97. BB

    you need to be a bit wary of some Steiner schools - there are some very odd types lurking within and quite of lot of very strange beliefs working in the background.

    steiner believed - for example - that disabled children deliberately chose their condition - while their soul was lurking in the moonsphere - in order to pass on their lost abilities to others.

    They also believe that disabled kids are not fully incarnated - if for instance their 'etheric body' is hanging out of the end of their fingertips it can be inhabited by a mischievous etheric being. I know chapter and verse of Anthroposophy.

    Also believe that what we do here on earth influences the spiritual worlds.

    ReplyDelete
  98. BB - part of our Christmas tradition is to renew acquaintance with the kids' decs made over the years & hang them on the tree - it's like meeting old friends.

    ReplyDelete
  99. Leni

    Ah. I had no idea about that. That sounds quite scary to me...

    Shaz - same here. Although the big paper and tinsel star disintegrated last year, which is a shame becuase that one had been going since he was about 5 or 6

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  100. Leni

    steiner believed - for example - that disabled children deliberately chose their condition - while their soul was lurking in the moonsphere - in order to pass on their lost abilities to others.

    Was Steiner Glenn Hoddle?

    BB,

    are Steiner and Montessori similar?

    ReplyDelete
  101. Yr Grace

    My nephew had a controlling and bullying father. After his parents split up he went to a Steiner school which I think saved his sanity. He turned out to be an absolute sweetie. Oh btw, Steiner schools are fee paying but they do have a sliding scale of fees that mean the less well off are in with a chance, or at least they used to.

    Scherf

    Can we judge and condemn her? I do - harshly, I wouldn't let a child within a million miles of her but then I'm just an old hippy with a 60's turn of thought. Neither of my kids have been 'successful' in La Chua's terms but they have turned into decent, affectionate human beings who are now raising lovely kids of their own. I'm very proud of them.

    ReplyDelete
  102. steiner believed - for example - that disabled children deliberately chose their condition - while their soul was lurking in the moonsphere - in order to pass on their lost abilities to others.

    I knew Steiner was a bit idiosyncratic but I didn't know that.

    ReplyDelete
  103. Sheff

    "Decent, affectionate human beings" is the highest possible achievement for one's kids in my book.

    Your Grace

    TBH I don't know whether there are parallels between Steiner and Montessori.

    ReplyDelete
  104. The "soul hanging in the moonsphere" and "choosing to pass your abilities on to others" sounds like a very bad understanding of the buddhist concepts of reincarnation and karma to me. I could just about understand where they are coming from, although it is a weird way to look at it.

    The thing that I think is a bit scary is the concept that children are not fully incarnated, though. That is just weird.

    ReplyDelete
  105. There's very little that's Chinese about her Scherf, unless you count the obvious external factors like ethnicty. She's a goddam proffessor of law at Yale university, there isn't much closer you can get to being at the heart of the American establishment.

    Oh yeah and I just checked her Wiki page, born 1962 in Illinois. Her mother was a Chinese Fillipino not actual Chinese.

    But yeah, she's had a good ride and got a lot of publicity which will be reflected in book sales. Even Yale academics need money to keep up with the Joneses I guess :)

    ReplyDelete
  106. Charles

    I wonder if she will understand it when her kids endorse the screenplay for the equivalent of Mommie Dearest about her, or, like the barrister Constance Briscoe, write a book revealing their mistreatment and abuse?

    ReplyDelete
  107. Hello everyone; my Dad always used to say to me and my four sisters, "You can only do your best and that's good enough for me".

    That's what I said to my daughter this week when she was getting in a bit of a snit over her maths and spelling tests at school.

    result: maths...7 out of ten
    spelling 12 out of 12

    ReplyDelete
  108. "Decent, affectionate human beings" is the highest possible achievement for one's kids in my book."


    Yep, it's not friggin rocket science!

    ReplyDelete
  109. There's very little that's Chinese about her Scherf

    FFS, charles. It's one thing being contrary, it's another being totally thick. Her recent essay in the WSJ was called 'Why Chinese Mothers Are Superior'. I wonder why?

    In best Chinese parenting manner, rather than providing a link for you I'll let you google it, find it, read it and then I will require you to post a 1500 word comment on what you think of the essay.
    If I don't like it, I will post a big sour face and say 'I reject this'.

    ReplyDelete
  110. Yep. I'm in the 'that's good enough for me' & 'decent affectionate human beings' camp with regard to my kids.

    Putting one's kids' achievements down is just pointless to me. I am reminded of a lad near here who suffered brain damage at birth. I recall his mum's pride and delight, when he took his first steps unaided at about 3 and half years old, and how chuffed she was able to walk with him to the shops, the library, the doctors etc. He went to the local secondary school, with support workers, and achieved his GCSEs.

    ReplyDelete
  111. A little snippet from Chua's WSJ essay:

    Chinese parents demand perfect grades because they believe that their child can get them. If their child doesn't get them, the Chinese parent assumes it's because the child didn't work hard enough. That's why the solution to substandard performance is always to excoriate, punish and shame the child.

    Mind you, according to charles, there's very little that's Chinese about Chua, so how the fuck would she know anyway?

    ReplyDelete
  112. Hmm. Wonder what she's like in the sack? pretty strict I'd warrant.

    ReplyDelete
  113. BB

    When steiner parted from the Theosophists to create the Anthropops he took many of their ideas with him.

    He took on board a lot of eastern philosophy and Jewish mysticism - Zohar fro instance. It's all interesting in an objective way but if you get true believers in the schools they are like zealots of any religion and can behave deplorably to children in their care.

    They also do not like traditional european medicine and are great believers in alternatives . i left the Steiner school when they refused to send boy with appendicitis to hospital. By the time I got him there - against physical opposition - he was into the peritonitis stage. Took me 10 years to close the place down. Most of our children came from abroad - very disturbed offspring of the super rich.

    ReplyDelete
  114. Actually, she was very tender and loving, BW. I was totally surprised.

    ReplyDelete
  115. BW and scherf

    The BDSM blog is that way... >>>>>

    :p

    Leni - that is bloody atrocious. I have nothing against alternative medecine in the right context but when there is a serious emergency like appendicitis or a broken limb or such like, no amount of herbal remedies or accupuncture is going to do any bloody good at all.

    I used to know a woman who was totally anti Western medecine - although she was British herself - and would not have her kids innoculated against anything. It was not my place to interfere with what she believed in, but I couldn't help thinking that she might be causing them unnecessary suffering at a later date because of what was essentially no more than a faith position, really.

    ReplyDelete
  116. Cheers scherfig. Like a Peking Hot-Lips eh ?

    ReplyDelete
  117. Hello Leni,not wishing to be flippant about your above post but whenever some one mentions peritontis, I have a knee-jerk reaction to post this link: http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=VQeJr65CBVE

    ReplyDelete
  118. "FFS, charles. It's one thing being contrary, it's another being totally thick. Her recent essay in the WSJ was called 'Why Chinese Mothers Are Superior'. I wonder why?"

    Like I said, book deal, money. I know about the article BTW, I read it before everyone else on here except for Bitey.

    She cannot claim to speak for Chinese parenting methods, she's not Chinese. She is not from China, her parents are not from China. How can they be Chinese. Oh yeah, the Chinese minority in the Fillipines. So you can still call her 'Chinese' in ethnic terms, but an avowed left winger like yourself should be uneasy about the gratuitous use of ethnicity as a form of identity.

    Too serious,- on a lighter note that crazy Taiwanese animated news company have covered the story.

    http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=AQ0Qfn689ZA&feature=player_embedded

    ReplyDelete
  119. Right, enough of this Diner de Cons, I'm off out for a curry.

    ReplyDelete
  120. On the weirder aspects of Steiner-Waldorf schools, it's worth reading this three-part discussion at Professor David Colquhoun's blog.

    ReplyDelete
  121. My mother was Amy Chua before Amy Chua was cool, as the saying goes. Not with all 3 of us -- the other two were much like her in temperament and, therefore, needed no re-adjustment. But I was a daydreamer who was hopeless when it came to practical matters, so I needed all that nonsense knocked out of me.

    I did try for a long time to find a way to please her, then I hoped for a long time that she would learn to accept the fact that I was just never going to be like her. When it became obvious that that was never going to happen, I tried the advice of people who said, "You can't change other people, but you can change the way you react to them." and tried to see the constant criticism as her way of loving me. Didn't work.

    I haven't spoken to the bitch for more than two years now. I hope Amy Chua's daughters wise up sooner than I did, tell her to fuck off and live their own lives.

    ReplyDelete
  122. .

    BeautifulBurnout said...

    I think Bitey has got himself a new nick...

    I know nothing of Harry Potter MrsB but I only post here as bitethehand. Sorry to disappoint you but clearly someone else has seen through your fakery.

    As for katie60, she's nailed Guillam to the proverbial mast, and to add another nautical metaphor, I like the cut of her jib.

    ReplyDelete
  123. Hey Bitters, how it going?
    Ah, yes Hot Lips Houlihan.

    I'm sure one of the tv channels could see the benefit of giving the M*A*S*H series another run out.

    ReplyDelete
  124. but an avowed left winger like yourself should be uneasy about the gratuitous use of ethnicity as a form of identity.

    Ha ha. Good one, Charles. I suggest you tell Ms Chua and her parents that they're not really Chinese after all. It's her self-definition and identity after all, not one that I just decided to bestow on her. I'd hate to be her daughters when you finally reveal to her that she's been living a total lie all this time. :0(
    Bummer, Amy!

    ReplyDelete
  125. As for katie60, she's nailed Guillam to the proverbial mast, and to add another nautical metaphor, I like the cut of her jib

    You would bitey, what a disappointment you continue to be. I suppose that that means we've two house trolls now...

    ReplyDelete
  126. Cream-crackered folks....work today was wuff, but outcome was good...

    I thought the Suzanne Moore piece was good despite the fact that it was severely curtailed... clearly a bigger and better article in there. But hey, at Groin Towers why have a decent article discussing fundamental issues when you can emasculate discourse and encourage blithering piffle and frothing with one's which ain't?

    We ARE timid. This is a fundamental fact. I was on the Tube a few months ago and there were a group of blokes salivating over the Daily Sport, the glee with which said neanderthals were being brazen about the images therein really, really, really made me angry. I mean, would you put up a screen on a tube and start showing porn films, irrespective of who was in the carriage?

    That's what it felt like and so I made my feelings known.... only to be shouted at not only by the morons practically wanking in brioad daylight, but also by some posh-boy middle class wanker griping onto me about 'free speech'.

    ReplyDelete
  127. Montana

    Sometimes cutting people off is the only way, otherwise they drive you stark staring bonkers. Good post.

    BW - Diner des Cons... cheeky bugger!

    Oh, and FOB.

    ReplyDelete
  128. @Sheff

    Actually, katie60 seems like a ready-made, near word-for-word reincarnation of Peter Bracken. So...errr...hurrah?

    ReplyDelete
  129. Actually, that should be FOD, Dobby.

    ReplyDelete
  130. Princess

    the odd troll on the Dean Baker thread I call Hammersmith man. I first met him around 3 am on an I/P thread when he came on ranting about a big building in Hammersmith which he promised to visit soon 'STRAPPED' and blow to pieces.

    His buzz words are - posh, red hats, libtardo and Londinistan . Sometimes he is highly articulate and others apparently semi literate and very confused. A real odd ball. I think he can probably unzip his skin if not landscapes.

    ReplyDelete
  131. LaRit

    I don't think that makes you timid. I think that makes you a strong woman! :o)

    ReplyDelete
  132. Two Brakenators in one universe Peter? Surely that would create a monster singularity that would gobble us all up?

    ReplyDelete
  133. Actually, Katie60 is such a full-on Blair-worshipper that I did wonder if it was Bracken in disguise, or maybe his missus (I wonder if his missus is Melissa Bell who is a journalist on French TV actually...)

    ReplyDelete
  134. Jesus Charles, cross the fucking road why don't you, what does it cost you? You must have women friends or relatives who've told you about those heart stopping moments when they're walking home alone.

    ReplyDelete
  135. BTW: "Le Diner de Cons" is on BBC 4 on thursday at 11.00pm in case anyone is interested.

    ReplyDelete
  136. LaRit

    For future use - now I'm older and don't give a flying f*ck, in situations such as you describe I usually say loudly: 'And is your dick really big enough for you to suck it yourself?'

    ReplyDelete
  137. Sheff:

    This is spooky.

    "As for katie60, she's nailed Guillam to the proverbial mast, and to add another nautical metaphor, I like the cut of her jib"

    I was interviewing someone last week and he was in a debating Society at his university. His fellow team member was a v. posh public school boy - get this, Michael Gove was on the judging panel and apparently wetting his knickers over said public school boy's debating style to the exclusion of anyone else taking part in the competition. His very phrase was 'I like the cut of his jib'.... lick, lick, scrape, scrape....

    The point of all this waffling is.... (and the obsession Bitey has wid Edukayshun) Is Bitey really Michael-Horse-tranquillised-child-catcher-Gove????

    ReplyDelete
  138. BeautifulBurnout said...

    If you don't want men to comment, you hold your meeting in a hall somewhere and control the entry.

    You might apply that advice to your own writing ATL rather than going blabbing to the mods.

    ReplyDelete
  139. "I suggest you tell Ms Chua and her parents that they're not really Chinese after all."

    No, you should be doing it if you stand by your convictions. Plenty on the left have told people that there is no such thing as ethnicity or they are citoyennes du monde.

    Anyway, this is a silly arguement. My point is, she is as much, if not more American than Chinese, not to disparage Americans or anything. But she's happy cos she got a good book deal out of it.

    ReplyDelete
  140. For future use - now I'm older and don't give a flying f*ck, in situations such as you describe I usually say loudly: 'And is your dick really big enough for you to suck it yourself?'

    Ditto re not giving a fuck. I have often thought there were some chaps who'd be perfectly happy if they could do that MsC.

    ReplyDelete
  141. BeautifulBurnout, scherfig and anyone else who thinks they know more about Amy Chua's children than they do...

    Here's daughter Sophia:

    "When we were younger, I thought my mum favoured Lulu, but as I've got older, we've become so close. It's not really the focus of the book, but my mum and I are incredibly similar. She understands me and always knows what I'm thinking. We crack up at each other's jokes and ask each other for advice. Most importantly, I can tell she wants me to be happy. The other day, I messed up a math test. I texted my mom that I got an A- and she replied, 'Who cares! Mummy loves u!'

    "It made my day.".


    On the other hand you can allow your children to grow up as teenage deliquents and spend most of your waking hours on the internet seeking popularity.

    ReplyDelete
  142. Bitey

    I beg you please, in the name of human kindness, back off. You have no idea what someone may be going through IRL.

    ReplyDelete
  143. Where's jen, btw? Not seen her for a while now.

    ReplyDelete
  144. The other day, I messed up a math test. I texted my mom that I got an A- and she replied, 'Who cares! Mummy loves u!'

    You mean our Tiger Mama didn't take a 鞭 to Sophia's back - good heavens, what a softy!

    ReplyDelete
  145. Neither did she text back "I reject this - come back when you have applied yourself".

    The children are not happy, they are brainwashed.

    ReplyDelete
  146. Katie60:

    @PeterGuillam

    you're a condescending, supercilious arse who'd lecture the scum line on his bath were it remotely sentient.

    You, my dear, are an arch Arse. You understand perfectly how sentient a human being Peter Guillam is and my god, do you hate and loathe it. You are one of those people who know the flip side but who belligerently and deliberately choose the dark side - such is your hatred of humanity. You want to be everywhere, spreading your muck and anti-human filth to try and stop the sunlight from shining through.

    Judging by the style and vitriol with which you made your debut on here, I am inclined to say you came over from Scheiss-Watch or some such turd-like site. Maybe you're Nadine Dorries, in pissed off mode?

    You know the rhyme? Two wells make a river, your head makes it bigger... it ends with... your bum makes it stink.

    Foetid air is all you breathe.

    ReplyDelete
  147. MizzChin:

    I love that toon! Fanks ;0) x

    ReplyDelete
  148. Sheffpixie

    Lets hope the filial chickens come home to roost when her are unfortunate children are grown up and can make their own decisions.

    Oh you really are generous, warm hearted individual Sheff.

    ReplyDelete
  149. No, you should be doing it if you stand by your convictions. Plenty on the left have told people that there is no such thing as ethnicity or they are citoyennes du monde.

    Give it up, Charles. You know fuck all about my convictions and I'm not personallly responsible for everything 'the left' have ever said about ethnicity, citizenship or Jean Luc fuckin' Picard. And you don't get to tell me what I should do either.

    If you can't defend your assertion that Chua isn't really Chinese by reason and sensible argument, then don't make the assertion in the first place.

    A simple question for Bitethehand - do you support and condone Ms Chua's methods of parenting? I certainly don't, and I don't need to know more about the Chua children than their own mother to come to that personal conclusion.

    And allowing children to grow up as teenage delinquents is not exactly an "or on the other hand" scenario, as I'm sure you are well aware. If you're at all interested, there is reams of stuff on American blogs at the moment in reaction to Chua's book where Chinese American children tell harrowing stories of suicide, anorexia and drug addiction as a result of or in spite of Chua-style parenting. It's not all straight A's and harvard Phd's. But again I'm quite sure that you are aware of this just as you are aware that not all 'western' parenting results in delinquency.

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  150. Charles

    As someone who interviews Chinese children and their parents, albeit usually through an interpreter as few speak much English, even the one who's an English teacher, I can confirm that lots of Chinese parents are like Amy Chua. Furthermore schools operate six days a week and I have one student who I hope will be coming to school in the UK next week or so, who starts at 7am and finishes at 9pm and 3pm on Saturday, and does 3 hours homework each night. And she's in a class of seventy. Furthermore all the students I've ever interviewed have extra private tuition for several hours on Sunday.

    And the result is that in maths and science - where a reasonable comparison can be made, they are 2 - 3 years ahead of their British counterparts.

    ReplyDelete
  151. Oh you really are generous, warm hearted individual Sheff.

    I am bitey - it's true but I have very little time for mothers who are cruel to their children, which imo is what La Chua is.

    ReplyDelete
  152. Hmmmm..having read some of Amy Chua's stuff before, I have to say I was kind of in overall agreement with her thoughts on parenting.

    I mean I don't want to be seen as an implacable block of ice by the kids, but at the same time I think setting the bar high might help them reach their full potential. And instil self-discipline, which is useful for achieving what you want to, which in turn increases the chances you'll be happy with your life.

    It's that in particular that I want for the kids - to be happy in themselves - and a bit of pressure seems like a good way to get there...

    ReplyDelete
  153. LaRit

    The point of all this waffling is.... (and the obsession Bitey has wid Edukayshun) Is Bitey really Michael-Horse-tranquillised-child-catcher-Gove????

    I don't have an obsession with education LaRit, it just happens I know a bit about it and make a reasonable living from that knowledge.

    And I went to a very rough working class grammar school.

    But I'll take the Gove comparison as a compliment. Unlike some people here, the man's made a success of his life, even if it's meant making a misery of others.

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  154. Charles:

    Plenty on the left have told people that there is no such thing as ethnicity or they are citoyennes du monde.

    Pure bollocks and shows a complete lack of understanding of the idea of Class. You don't get it, yet, but I hope you will, for your sake.

    One breakthrough I had came with playing Bach for four/ five hours a day when I was doing me Grade 8 piano. There are no bar lines... time stands still between beats and yet moves on - in time! (and no, I wasn't taking any drugs at that time)

    Time is elastic and so too is Class. It's not an abnegation of colour, creed or sex, it's an understanding that all of us without power are confined within those socially imposed limits. We squabble and snipe and try to define ourselves, but until we do only in terms of the Class that has no control - we are defined by those paltry labels. It's called slavery.

    Think about it.

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  155. Bitey

    You believe that striving for academic success is all that is involved in bringing up a child. Bully for you. I can tell that you either a) have no children yourself or b) if you do they have probably left you by the wayside because of your viciousness long since.

    Jog on.

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  156. Chua also saysthat she used the term "Chinese mothers" loosely, and that Korean, Indian, Jamaican, Irish and Ghanaian parents also exhibit the same tactics.

    Nuff said.

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  157. Bitey:

    I think you are a very conflicted human being. I'm not making any assumptions about you or your motivations, your mental health or any other such thing - god knows, I get pissed off when people on CIf claim to know the inner workings of my mind, but I am genuinely puzzeled by your actions on here. I think even BB is trying to like you and yet you are determined to be, well nothing short of a pain in the backside.

    Don't be flattered by the Gove comparison - unless you like being compared to an out and out fascist?

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  158. Unlike some people here, the man's made a success of his life, even if it's meant making a misery of others.

    So making a misery of other people's lives can be considered a successful life? I guess that sums up where we differ bitey - I could never, ever agree with that.

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  159. BB - :)

    the difference between being awake and asleep is... a long sleep....

    I'd rather be awake, with all the pain that entails, but there also comes pure joy. Charles knows not yet the difference - Bitey is fighting it.

    It's like the myth perpetrated by Capitalism of human beings being 'innately selfish'. That's fucking bollocks as well.

    No, 99% of human beings are eternally and overwhelmingly altruistic and yet we even begin to believe and discuss the hype as if it were reality.

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  160. Oh and Montana .... what a bloody wonderful picture of Martin Luther King.

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  161. scherfig

    A simple question for Bitethehand - do you support and condone Ms Chua's methods of parenting?

    From what I've read, from my own experience and from observing alternatives, the answer is yes.

    Of course there will be downsides to any system - I knew a guy who went to Summerhill and couldn't read until he was seventeen, but parents dedicating themselves to their children's education, to me seems beyond criticism.

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  162. "No, 99% of human beings are eternally and overwhelmingly altruistic "

    True.

    It's a shame, though, that for the most part it seems to be the other 1% who are running things.

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  163. Which reminds me, re the pic.

    I forgot to say... Happy Birthday, MLK.

    Happy Birthday to ya!

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  164. "It is obvious today that America has defaulted on this promissory note, insofar as her citizens of color are concerned. Instead of honoring this sacred obligation, America has given the Negro people a bad check".

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  165. And rumour has it, the 'I have a Dream' speech was ad-lib.... it's been set to music and a friend of mine (proper Bass, true Bass) sang it...mindblowing.

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  166. "Change does not roll in on the wheels of inevitability, but comes through continuous struggle. And so we must straighten our backs and work for our freedom. A man can't ride you unless your back is bent." MLK.

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  167. but parents dedicating themselves to their children's education, to me seems beyond criticism.

    Even you must realise that this is patent nonsense, bitethehand. It's how they might dedicate themselves which is crucial. Would you approve of a sound trashing if a child failed to get good results? Some parents would do this and justify it as being for the 'child's own good', 'I do it out of love', 'they'll thank me for it eventually' etc etc and all the other platitudes. I would include also non-physical punishments such as Chua recommends - curtailment of social life, deprivation of leisure time and so on.

    How can some of the actions of so-called dedicated parents be beyond criticism?

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  168. LaRit

    Don't be flattered by the Gove comparison - unless you like being compared to an out and out fascist?

    LaRit, you don't usually expose your ignorance so prominently, but to suggest Gove is an out and out fascist, lets those who were and are off the hook.

    According to Wiki:

    Gove was initially a Labour supporter and activist, and considered a career in the Church of Scotland before he became a journalist.

    Well so was Oswald Mosley (a Labour Party activist) but he founded the British Union of Fascists and as yet Gove is still in the Conservative Party.

    I am genuinely puzzeled by your actions on here.

    Me too, but I only came here after I was banned from CiF and got fed up with people here thinking it was oh so clever to deny my freedom of speech by reporting my new names to the mods.

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  169. LaRit

    I think you are a very conflicted human being

    LaRit, care to explain what you mean by this before I agree or disagree.

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  170. "They put your mind right in a bag, and take it wherever they want."

    Malcolm x

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  171. got fed up with people here thinking it was oh so clever to deny my freedom of speech by reporting my new names to the mods.

    No freedoms denied you here bitey. Ironic, no?

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  172. Sheffpixie

    When I get a contract and my competitors don't, I make a misery of their life.

    Few people never have this experience. You get the job, promotion, pay rise, bonus, lottery win and others don't.

    Michael Gove might make lots of peoples' lives a misery, but he also cheers a lot of others up. I can assures you of that; some of my friends are tories.

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  173. "......some of my friends are tories."

    Why am I not surprised.

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  174. If you are reading Jen - hope all is well?

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  175. scherfig

    Would you approve of a sound trashing if a child failed to get good results?

    No I've stated on many occasions on CiF that I'm against parents or teachers or anyone else assaulting children.

    As for depriving them from watching Neighbours or spending the night on Facebook, that seems to me to be the very height of sensible parenting.

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  176. Evening deano! Glad to hear you are over the lurgy. Disappointed that you are intending to resign from Procrastinators Anonymous though... :o)

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  177. Having control of the on/off switch for the technology is one thing Bites - the ram moulding of one's kids in the image of self is another thing all together.

    Evening Chin - glad you survived the shopping hell

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  178. Evening BB - intention is all for a procrastinator........if I can imagine a task done, that's close enough to a result for me!

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  179. Interesting, bitethehand. I say 'curtailment of social life, deprivation of leisure time and so on', and you define this as 'depriving them from watching Neighbours or spending the night on Facebook'.

    Actually, I was thinking more along the lines of playing outside with friends rather than practising piano for two hours a day, or going to see a movie on a Saturday afternoon rather than taking extra maths tuition. Still, fuckin' kids, eh? Don't know what's good for them, do they?

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  180. Been on a self imposed exile from blogs.. tried to make it through to the end of Jan, but have obviously failed miserably..

    Havn't read today's but started looking back and last Thurs was a good back. Respect to PG for that ATL article, and to Sherfigs LFC ''lament'' ?

    @ Bitterweed
    Anyway what grabbed me back was listening to this, and the Dobro player at the start. The rest is quite beautiful as well:

    Transatlantic_Sessions_Series_3_Episode_2

    It's 30 mins on iPlayer, but great to have on in the background.

    Oh and Happy New Year to everyone !!

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  181. Hello tascia & welocme back to the land of the addicts.

    scherfig

    I too was thinking of play & social contact with other kids as something worthy. Education is all very well as springboard to 'success' but you have to apply knowledge not only in ways of knowing, but also in ways of being - as a human.

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  182. monkeyfiss

    Behave! She's way out of your league ... or perhaps not.

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  183. monkeyfiss?

    Sorry, MF. A freudian slip perchance?

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  184. LaRit

    21:17...nail...head...Estwing...some cunt nicked mine about 10 years ago..I still miss it.

    Fucked up badly..giving up the fags-wise tonight..for various reasons..of a socio-sexual-political nature, I found myself more or less impelled to get ruthlessly mortalled ...at least 15..and counting...loved every drag

    cigarettes are sublime

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  185. "Sorry, MF. A freudian slip perchance?"

    ..more of a banana skin

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  186. evening all

    amy chau: psychopathic control freak

    the ethos of child-"human" rearing IMO should be based on the adage

    "you can guide your kids but you should never push them to be something they aren't you will fail", value them as individuals and validate what they value as achievements not what you value.....

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  187. La Rit. I'm not going to get into an argument about class, too late at night!

    Viz
    While I can see that there might not be anything wrong with a small amount of pushy parenting (and I'm not a parent obviously) the fact is that there are degrees of proportionality, which Chua has far exceeded.

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  188. No sign of Jen-she should be doing her new OU course soon.

    Anyways- g'night.

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