26 February 2011


Treachery is always a hairy caterpillar bred of a small butterfly called envy, no matter how lofty the principles involved.
-Fazil Iskander


  1. Qrobur

    26 February 2011 7:27AM

    The Guardian puffs itself up as being a premier digital medium.

    Yesterday it, without notice or warning, consigned its talkboards to history. Over the course of more than a decade this digital resource had provided a place for people to meet and share information in way that CiF never has and never will.

    During those ten years many significant threads were developed. For instance, on the technical side the 'I.T. and Computers' folder contained a vast amount of useful information. On the human side threads such as those dealing with depression had become important for a lot of people dealing with this condition. GUT was a real community. As felaheen put it eloquently here yesterday, so much of a community was it people developed real friendships or even met their partners on it.

    At 17:34 yesterday The Guardian simply turned the talkboards off. No warning, no notice and absolutely no recognition of how it was destroying a community.

    A number of people complained about this truly shocking action here. How has 'premier digital medium' to which I referred at the head of this post responded? Not by accepting that the debate should be had and that former users of the talkboards should be heard, but by deleting all posts concerning them.

    People want to talk about the way The Guardian closed its talkboards. They'd like to know why this was done. Most importantly, they want a chance to regroup rather than lose everything and everyone they've developed over the course of ten years. It appears The Guardian would rather the people it describes as 'inventing social networking' were silenced and begone.

    The Guardian is showing itself in a very poor light, not just because of the cavalier way it chose to close its talkboards, not merely because it failed to provide any alternative for the members of the community who suddenly find themselves cut off but also because it is trying to stifle comment on the matter.

    I would have expected better.

  2. Sorry there's no image for now. Having some technical issues with Chrome that are going to take some time to figure out and I still can't get Blogger to upload images when I'm using Opera.

  3. I do not want the above post to be seen as another "Oh, you lot are always going on about CiF here. Get over it" comment.

    However, it seems to show the value CiF puts on its unpaid contributors: none.

    Of course, it used to be possible to search for a banned person's contributions and still be able to read them.

    These, too, are now simply vanished - disappeared.

    Does a publication like The Guardian have any moral duty to those who contribute more content than those who are paid to do so above the line?

    It would seem that those in charge do not think this to be the case.

    Is this, then, The Guardian yet again becoming the Mr Potato Head image of the current government's philosophy?

    Is this the Big Society in action?

    You keep giving for nothing - and we treat you like shit.

    The we simply abandon you without a word.

  4. Morning, Montana.

    PS to above -

    Someone with posting rights might like to mention this place, at least, with Montana's permission.

    I cannot imagine the "welcome" lasting long once the Dribbles start to feel outnumbered and too thick to compete.

    Obviously, the deletions started as soon as the refugees came over the hill.

  5. Hi All--Good morning/evening as the case may be.

    Bitey--Good point there, we will see which way the popular wind blows. Hoping from here that cool heads will prevail. What do you think of the protests in China? Anything to amount to real change? Can't see it myself but I'm willing to learn from real people on the ground.

    smtx01--Have you looked at the web sites I gave you? What are your thoughts and what will you do?

  6. Thanks for the Joe Walsh bitey - jumped me right out of bed- almost!


    Re Libya - here's something useful you can contribute to that Avaaz have organised:

    Blackout proof the protests

    Whats going on at the groan AB? Am a bit out of touch. Which talkboards are these?

  7. And now I've just seen that link to Joe Walsh. Bitey ,you can be a pleasantly surprising bugger at times.

  8. Good post Atomboy and it seems you're not alone in expressing outrage as comments on WDYWTTA testify. I'd add mine but sadly "Thebadplus" was banned yesterday after a complaint from the hermit and I can't be bothered setting up another one just to call him a censor.

  9. Sheff, the old Guardian Unlimited Talk boards. They were in a very basic format that's as old as the hills, but it had a dedicated band of habitees that have been there for over a decade. No place for it in the brave new world of page hits and comment bait. And apparently no time to tell its devoted followers in advance that it was being shut down.


    I suspect that the GUT outcasts may not hang around in the numbers Hanman wants (I also suspect traffic may be down on her watch and this is something of a drastic measure to get people to migrate).

    GUT was an old-style bulletin board, where people raised and shaped the threads. But in traffic terms, it wasn't worth a spit to The Guardian.

    The Dribbly regulars won't care, in fact it gives them a bigger audience to delight and dazzle with their wit. But if you're a long-standing GUTter, used to talking about specific things that are important to you, the witter and the wankfests are going to wear thin in 5 minutes sharp.

    Maybe they are going to resurrect the talkboards in some form on CiF, but if they are (a) why not wait until they're up and running before closing GUT, (b) why didn't they at least mention this before summary closure of the Talk boards and (c) why are Dribbly posts flagging the possibility being deleted.

    A massive fuck up and a stonking piece of cowardice in its handling.

    Full steam ahead. Steady as she sinks.

  10. Morning Sheff. You are not out of touch. Just not in the know. (points at nose,nods knowingly in a conservative manner, which in itself will give the proles a sense of security which cannot be bought.) How dare you question the proper order? Should not the people that own the country rule it?

  11. Can someone fish me doo-dah out of the bin?

  12. Sheff 08.09--

    "After a period of review, it is with great regret that we have to say goodbye to the Guardian Unlimited talkboards. We are unable to continue to support this separate platform.

    Community is a vital part of our service at guardian.co.uk and we hope to be able to introduce forums on that platform in the coming months.

    It's been more than a decade -- you all practically invented social networking. Thank you for all your contributions."

    At the time of Pinochet's arrest we had lively "discussion" with some suporting him from Chile, and during the bombing of Yugoslavia 1999 many eyes were opened by the news leads and alternative analysis found there...

    So yes. It was more than a decade .... and for many of us, like Atoms and me, it was the very beginning of the networking and also genuine friendships we now have here and elsewhere, and take so much for granted ...

  13. Bitey ,you can be a pleasantly surprising bugger at times.

    Well I'll try to remedy that a bit later. o(╯□╰)o

  14. The government plans to seize billions of pounds in assets belonging to Libyan leader Moamer Kadhafi which include property and bank accounts, the Telegraph reported Friday.

    Time was you had to invade and colonise a country to get hold of this kind of cash - now all you need to do is walk down to the bank.

    Seriously this should be quite an incentive for the people of Libya to get the job done as quickly as possible.

  15. Thanks for the info guys - how bloody infuriating.

    Community is a vital part of our service at guardian.co.uk

    It sure sounds like it!!

  16. Well I'll try to remedy that a bit later. o(╯□╰)o

    Heh..heh..heh bitey. Glad you'll not disappoint at least!!

  17. Treasury 'to seize' Kadhafi's billions

    (AFP) – 1 day ago

    LONDON — The government plans to seize billions of pounds in assets belonging to Libyan leader Moamer Kadhafi which include property and bank accounts, the Telegraph reported Friday.
    The Treasury has set up a special unit to track down the assets which are believed to include a 10 million pound London home, the paper said.
    "The first priority is to get British nationals out of Libya," a government source told the daily.
    "But then we are ready to move in on Kadhafi's assets, the work is under way. This is definitely on the radar at the highest levels."
    According to the paper some 20 billion pounds in liquid assets, mostly in London, will be frozen "within days."


    So, tin-pot dictators [Shouldn't that be "revered world leaders"? - Ed] and filthy tax-fiddlers keep siphoning off billions of money and stashing it under their mattresses.

    Isn't it time we asked the "wealth creators" to run a couple of night shifts to get the world's economy moving again?

  18. Sorry, Bitethehand.

    You "scooped" me.

    OK gotta go.

  19. Bitey--Touche

    How about this for crossing time zones?


  20. Bitey--I do agree that the assets of the state could be an important factor. Who decides? And where is the money? We do know that Switzerland and their banks will do what's best for them, no? they are bankers not philanthropists.

  21. Seriously shitty thing for the Guardian to do. I'm still friends with 4 people that I became acquainted with through a Usenet group, FFS. That's at least 20 years now. I can imagine how devastated some of these people (and Dave & AB -- didn't know you were part of it) must be feeling.

    It can't really have cost the Guardian much of anything to maintain -- why the hell would they do it?

    I'm not opposed to finding a way to invite GUT people here, but, if they're used to multiple threads & such -- I don't know how useful/adequate a replacement we'd be. I wasn't familiar with GUT. If we dusted off the auxiliary UT sites & maybe added a few more, perhaps it could work?

    AB & Dave -- since you're familiar with GUT -- what do you think?

  22. Montana, the simplest way to create threads is a $200 vBulletin board. I think that a replacement is already there, however.



    I don't think this is going to pan out as the Guardian had hoped.

  23. Surely whatever assets Gaddafi (or however you want to spell it) has stashed outside of Libya should be returned to the Libyan people?

    Or am I just being silly?

  24. Boudican you asked:

    What do you think of the protests in China? Anything to amount to real change? Can't see it myself but I'm willing to learn from real people on the ground.

    I had an exchange about this with Annetan42 on the 24th and I tend to agree with you. there seems to be far more interest in the fact that snow has fallen in northern China ending a 60 day drought and the 20 students who died in Christchurch. Today's Xinhua News agency reports only on the evacuation of Chinese nationals from Libya but nothing about the fighting, although people will I'm sure draw their own conclusions.

  25. Montana--It's the cuts, and more cuts. Can't you see that we're all in this together? Land and sea shall part us not in this global, no, big society. Yours, in the one world order, Rupert.

  26. @Montana

    It depends how they "hand the assets back to the Libyan people".

    How the US sent $12bn in cash to Iraq. And watched it vanish

  27. Rapid

    I don't think this is going to pan out as the Guardian had hoped

    DúnlangÓhArtagáin - sounds like another Irishman subverting the groans intentions!

  28. Montana-- I dropped out of Talk many years ago,when I lost the computer to lightning, went back and they'd changed the format and my mates hadn't liked it apparently. So I can't help there.

    It was a real community, but it's like moving house, you keep in touch with a handful of people only but the rest remain good memories!

    Maybe you could open a "GUT Poste Restante' in the sidebar to help people eventually get back in touch thru mail or whatever ?

    They're I'm sure a resourceful bunch, so someone will be working on a similar idea for sure . But forwarding links could be publicised here at least.

  29. @RapidEddie:

    Oh, I see. I was merely responding to AB's question about inviting them here. I am confused, though. If the Graun shut of the talkboards without warning on the 25th, how is it that the replacement board was started on the 22nd?

  30. Paul said...


    Obviously what's gone on between you and Ally in the past is none of my business.I just felt you should know he wasn't guilty of grassing you up today.

    I'm sure you're right about that as he's long ago learnt the lesson that freedom of speech is bigger even than him and his over inflated ego.

    So here's the first time I crossed the proverbial sword with Mr Fogg, on 10 October 2007:

    Having said that, an excellent article Ms Elliott, although I'd be interested to know how you police the 'adult' material in your own library.

    AllyF and others need to consider the connection between what Ms Elliot refers to as 'the way porn culture is wheedling its way into our children's lives' and the fact that the UK has the highest rate of teenage pregnancy in Europe. You don't need to be a forensic psychologist, whatever that is, to understand that if parents dress their daughters up to look like tarts on the game and tell them how wonderful they look, they're going to take the next step when lover boy from down the road who's two years older, tells them to act the part.

    And since then we have continued to joust and from time to time I've heaped praise on his contributions, although I can't ever recall him reciprocating, even when we've been in near total agreement.

  31. Yes Bitey, such a big country with many provinces that have issues of their own. Could a twitter or any type of internet insurgency happen there? Or do the powers have their control locked and loaded? Seems like it from here, though I am quite ignorant regarding the internal politics in China.

    Montana--Not silly at all. We shall have to see though what type of government comes to the fore. That is kind of a Rumsfeldian unknown. Sorry, I don't like the prick either.

  32. If anyone wants to suggest the UT to GUTers, it might be better for someone to start a thread on www.thegraun.com explaining what the UT is. That way they can decide whether it interests them at all.

  33. Hi Spike - just off to post thegraun.com link to waddya....

  34. Hi Dave.

    We'll see if that stays up for long. With a bit of luck, the mods will be too busy with the latest Bidisha to notice. ;-)

  35. retired Admiral David Oliver, is even more direct. The memorandum quotes an interview with the BBC World Service. Asked what had happened to the $8.8bn he replied: "I have no idea. I can't tell you whether or not the money went to the right things or didn't - nor do I actually think it's important."

    Q: "But the fact is billions of dollars have disappeared without trace."

    Oliver: "Of their money. Billions of dollars of their money, yeah I understand. I'm saying what difference does it make?"

    What a cunt. What a complete and utter cunt. I can't even begin to describe the rage I feel at reading that. Why is it that the assholes like Admiral Oliver -- the ones who deserve to get blown up by an IED or shot by insurgents -- are never the ones who actually do?

  36. Spike, you make a salient point here, though many have heard of this site. As Kinsella said, if you build it they will come. Bring it on.

  37. Bidisha in very restrained form.

    As MBC1955 has said:

    There's nothing new in this article, but on the other hand nothing objectionable either.

    Obviously planned in concert with the Talkboard closure, so the moderators don't have to double up between here and WADDAYA.

  38. Montana--The way they dismiss waste and negligence is shocking. Even more so is the complete lack of guts or balls to discuss any cuts regarding the military. Not since McGovern has any politician dared to broach this sacred cow of American policy. Sadly, I don't see any pols even thinking about it. Political suicide for any who tries.

  39. Boudican you asked:

    Could a twitter or any type of internet insurgency happen there? Or do the powers have their control locked and loaded?

    Twitter is banned in China although I've heard the government is considering its own version.

    But strangely enough quite the opposite seems to be happening, although quite how much you can believe this is difficult to say. And I've not tried it out myself.

    At the end of last September China's Cabinet, issued a white paper on Progress in China's Human Rights in 2009. An English version of the paper can be read here..

    It has sections on:

    The People's Rights to Subsistence and Development
    Citizens' Civil and Political Rights
    Judicial Guarantee of Human Rights
    Economic, Social and Cultural Rights
    Equal Rights and Special Protection for Ethnic Groups
    Rights and Interests of People with Disabilities
    Exchanges and Cooperation with Other Countries in the Realm of Human Rights

    In the section on Citizens' Civil and Political Rights it has the following about the use of the internet, a particular relevance here given the nature of CiF and that in the past even the Chinese Ambassador to the UK has written there ATL.:

    With their right to freedom of speech on the Internet protected by the law, Chinese citizens can voice their opinions in a wide variety of ways on the Internet. The Internet is given full scope in China, and has become an important channel for people to obtain various types of information and voice their opinions. By the end of 2009, the number of Chinese netizens had reached 384 million, meaning 28.9 percent of the total population had access to the Internet, higher than the world's average level. In the same year, there were 3.23 million websites running in China. China's websites attach great importance to providing netizens with services that enable them to express their opinions, with more than 80 percent of them providing electronic bulletin service.

    In China there are over a million bulletin board services (BBS) and some 220 million bloggers. According to a sample survey, each day people post over three million messages via BBS, news commentary sites, blogs, etc., and over 66 percent of Chinese netizens frequently place postings to discuss various topics, and to fully express their opinions and represent their interests.

    On complaining and holding government bodies and officials to account:

    The Chinese government attaches great importance to the Internet's role in supervision. Governments at all levels are required to investigate and resolve in a timely manner all problems reported to the government by the public via the Internet, and to inform the public of the action taken and the results. The great majority of government websites carry relevant e-mail addresses and telephone numbers, so that the authorities can be informed of problems in their work. Over the past few years, a great number of the problems reported through the Internet have been resolved.

    On corruption, an area of particular concern to the vast majority who are not Communist Party members, is the following:

    In order to facilitate the public's reporting of corruption, dereliction of duty, and so on, among officials, the central discipline inspection and supervision authorities, the Supreme People's Court, the Supreme People's Procuratorate and other relevant bodies have set up special websites.

    And so it continues.

    Now I have never risked testing the reality of these claims and nor do I know anyone who has, although I have had dealings with the police who were very supportive, but the fact that this paper exists indicates the impact the internet and the international pressure on human rights is having in China today.


  40. Montana -- one wonders if they are actually HUMAN ? to make you even madder -) : --



    In addition georgewashinton2 gives all the details on how they're going to cut funding to the under-funded regulatory authorities which are already being 98% sabotaged by Fuckin Fifth Columnists at the top and inside them .

    Looking at all the frauds some of which are definitely criminal, , and the complicity of many of the legal profession ( lawyers and bought judges) in them, that is where our attention should be moving ... work in progress...

    Are We Downhearted?

    Answers on a postcard.... I'm off to the market. XX

  41. There's a rather long post of mine in the spam bin I guess, replying to Boudican's question:

    Could a twitter or any type of internet insurgency happen there? Or do the powers have their control locked and loaded?

  42. Checkhov - thanks for the New Yorker Link, am ploughing through it and have bookmarked it.

    Dreadfully revealing about the bankruptcy pf modern politics.

    Its people like this and those who support them that are the real enemy. Money is power - especially when it comes in tens of billions!

    This made me giggle though:
    He(David H. Koch)has given twenty million to the American Museum of Natural History, whose dinosaur wing is named for him.

    How very appropriate! May he and his kind become extinct very soon!

  43. Dave from France

    Are we downhearted?

    Nah mate just fucking ANGRY!!!

  44. Anne, the answer,in my misspent youth, was ---

    Are we FUCK !

  45. Just posted on waddya, although it probably won't last long -

    I see that bitethehand's latest reincarnation has now been banned and deleted. And that englishhermit has proudly stepped up and admitted to reporting him to the moderators. What a sad, inadequate little person the hermit must be to show such pathetic vindictiveness. Although it is entirely in keeping with the barely concealed streak of fascism which marks so many of his comments.

    And, incidentally, this defender of freedom of speech and waddya stalwart is a person who spent several days posting the word 'quack' thousands of times on another blog, confident in the knowledge that he wouldn't be banned because the blog is totally non-moderated. Such wonderful hypocrisy.

  46. Just read through yesterday's thread.


    I think one the problems is our fetishisation with academic over vocational. Some of the vocations do you can do in Germany, things like designing automotive engines or tunnel boring machines etc, require a vast amount of knowledge and skill and is not something like hairdressing. These are things that take years of experience to get from starting out as an apprentice. The knowledge acquired is probably more in depth than most degree courses as well.

    We were talking about this subject a while ago. The only way Western Europe can have a justifiable manufacturing industry for export is to manufacture extreme hi tech products which the Indians and Chinese cannot build, high value exports as well, not fridges or toasters.

    These are much more complex than assembly line jobs (which almost no longer exist due to automisation). Really, the amount of precision makes factories more like laboratories.

    You really don't know much about manufacturing.

    Engines are designed by degreed engineers and the specs passed to CAD jockeys who create the 3D models. Increasingly, those two roles are being merged. Then CAE analysis is done on the models, also a highly technical job requiring many years of knowledge.

    There are still plenty of assembly line jobs. In automotive, paint and body are automated (in the First World factories at least), but trim and final are largely manual. And automating a body shop still requires plenty of work: robotic simulations and process planning are done up front as soon as the CAD geometry becomes available, and then are jobs in programming and maintaining the robots.

    I strongly suspect you've never actually been in a factory.

  47. It's the Inequality, Stupid, from Mother Jones. Yet more stomach-churning information about The Land of the Free and the Home of the Brave™.

    one wonders if they are actually HUMAN ?

    Not sure if this is a semi-serious question about the likes of Oliver or if it's a sarcastic reference to the attitude that his ilk have towards the Iraqis, but I'd have to say that calling Oliver & co. pond scum would be an insult to algae.

  48. The only way Western Europe can have a justifiable manufacturing industry for export is to manufacture extreme hi tech products which the Indians and Chinese cannot build, high value exports as well, not fridges or toasters.

    When I was India, I did see men at the side of the road just bashing bits of metal with hammers. I think they were making things for cooking, like pans and things.

    I also saw men squatting, having a shit and watching the world go by, unconcerned.

    Also, once, a dead body just lying in the road. The driver said he was probably having a sleep.

    These Johnnie Foreigners couldn't make stuff like Bulldog Drummond and his pals, could they?

    Oh, except that the lovely computer which lets you spill yer brainz across the internet was probably made in South Korea or China or India.

    Lot of Indian software developers in Silicon Valley, too.

    Obviously, they try to stop them shitting on the grass verges, but what are you going to do?

  49. Well said, atomboy. A half-second google provided the following

    "India is ranked second in terms of manufacturing competence, according to report '2010 Global Manufacturing Competitiveness Index', by Deloitte Touche Tohmatsu and the US Council on Competitiveness. The report states that the country's talent pool of scientists, researchers, and engineers, together with its English-speaking workforce and democratic regime make it an attractive destination for manufacturers."

    "Chinese manufacturing industry ranks 4th among all manufacturing industries of the world. United States Of America ranks first followed by Japan and Germany."

    Where this leaves Charles' ridiculous contention that there are hi tech products which the Indians and Chinese cannot build is anybody's guess. Perhaps they lag behind the UK in the cutting edge polymer technology of building clackers.

  50. JanineGibson

    26 February 2011 12:38PM

    Sorry to disappoint - we won't be able to discuss the reasons for GU Talkboard's abrupt closure on Monday either. But there will be a place for refugees to locate each other which we will put on the guardian.co.uk front page so it can be found and we will post links to all the sites we can find where people are regrouping. This thread is being modded not to 'disappear' criticism, but to attempt to stay on topic. On Monday there will be a place to find your friends.
    Thanks and sorry for the suddenness.


    Couldn't she have just said "Thanx n soz"?

    Wouldn't that have been more honest and displayed a truer image of contempt?

    She could even have done this:

    *yawn* ;o)

    For all The Guardian's clumsy, clodhopping attempts to pretend that they "get" new technology, they haven't a fucking clue.

  51. Speaking of which, they wanted to scatter their content across the internet, as long as those people who displayed it on their sites carried adverts, for which the Guardian took the money.

    How did that go?

    Well, they made a WordPress plugin, to make it easy for anyone to do.

    These plugins have a tally of how many times they have been downloaded. Good ones are used tens of thousands of times. Really good ones, hundreds of thousands or millions.

    How did The Guardian's go down with teh interwebz kool kidz?

    Less than fifteen hundred.

  52. "To attempt to stay on topic"? On Waddya?



  53. And:

    "We'll still have to mod speculation as to why they closed, I'm afraid".

    No change there then.

  54. Leopold1904 got modded for copying this from another Guardian site page to waddya !

    "I'm replying to your email on behalf of Alan Rusbridger.
    We're truly sorry for the shock that you and your friends felt on Friday when we had to close the GU Talkboards so abruptly. We didn't support them for over a decade lightly or casually, and we didn't close them suddenly in that vein either.
    We also know how much they meant to the community - over the weekend we've seen them described on Twitter as "Web 2.0 social networking before Zuckerberg was a Harvard freshman" and been reading blog posts about how people met their partner through the boards.

    Worse still, we have to be mysterious about it. We can't discuss the reasons behind it, save to say that it wasn't possible to give you advance notice of the closure, but we will be opening a thread on guardian.co.uk on Monday where we hope you'll be able to find each other and regroup.

    There are already several sites we have found where GUTalkers are gathering together"



    I hope you can find your friends there in the meantime.
    We do hope in the coming weeks to be able to offer forums on guardian.co.uk where we can support continued conversations between old friends, should you still feel so inclined.
    I know this was far from ideal.
    With best wishes,

    Janine Gibson


    It looks like thaumaturge was right on their being a superinjunction -- speculation on WHY the GUT was closed will be moderated -- OFFICIAL.

  55. Someone has suggested Trafigura, but I wonder if there have been threads on Atos/A4E perchance? Anyone know?

  56. For a bit of history, worth refreshing out of general interest ---


  57. Lawlsie

    26 February 2011 2:06PM

    I would worry yourself too much clearwater. There's no way we talkboardies want to take over your little place here. This is a far inferior product to the talkboard, by quite some way. Your revolting earnestness being just one of many reasons why we can't stand it here.

    So have no fears. You can go on bleating as much as you like to, well, not very many people.

    You guys do know don't you that none of the journalists who write for the Guardian ever read the crap you post below the line?


    Dunno who Clearwater is, but it looks like panic is already setting in with regard to filthy furriner immigrants washing their smalls in the puddles of Dribbly and hanging them from the railings.

    Viewed through the magic eye of EnglishTurnip, though, all these newcomers must be GIYUS on the rampage.

    He must be reporting them all to Guardian (Machine Gun) Towers.

    PS Is it true that nobody at the Guardian - or anywhere else - actually reads the comments?

    All that effort for nothing, eh?

  58. Atoms -- as i just pointed out over there, CLEARWATER's extensive CiF posting history goes back three posts , all today!

    Fuckin amateurs - waste of bleeding ammunition knocking them over.

  59. A temporary alias then, damnferal?

  60. josephmalik

    Thank you for your post at 10:59 and I recall you making this one back in September when the il-fated Brooklynowes managed a considerably longer run.

    Careful now, brooklynowes, you don't want to fall back into old habits and bite the hand that feeds you. (Love the Steely Dan reference, btw)

    And well done for picking up the Steely Dan connection. I did used to have an absolutely stonking quote from a review of The Royal Scam which at one time appeared on my profile, but sadly I seem to have lost it.

  61. frog

    Apart from a few recent flurries, during which I have looked at several things on CiF, I wouldn't know one from another on Dribbly any more.

    It feels like having your mind nailed to a table and dragging it like rainbow-coloured elastic until it finally pings.

    Or sharing a room with a bunch of Dementors until your will to live is vapourised.

    I feel sorry for anyone thinking they might be able to set up a new colony in that poisoned soil.

    Then they will have to contend with endless stories about top-flight American diplomats at the opera...

    Poor fucking bastards.

  62. RTE exit polls give: Fine Gael is on 36.1 per cent, Labour is on 20.5 per cent, Fianna Fáil has slumped to 15.1 per cent, Sinn Féin is on 10.1 per cent, the Green Party were on 2.7 per cent and Independents and Others were on 15.5 per cent.

    So looking very much - as expected - like a Fine Gael/Labour coalition with Enda Kenny as taoiseach.

    Fianna Fáil a pretty distant third. They are so fucked. Hopefully for good.

  63. Lawlsie on CiF said:

    And another thing... we started our own threads. This place [CiF] is all top down.


  64. Atoms - I only dip a toe in there for very specific reasons, always a lead from here in fact.

    RapidEddie -- no great signs for optimism, but there we're all in the same boat, tho some sectors and even whole nations are still blissfully unaware. I see the Spaniards have reduced speed limits, 110 kms/h on motorways, reminds me of '73 when it was 50mph in England...

    Now to sow some broad beans an mangetouts.

  65. Some good jokes coming in from Libya - I've posted one up in the gallery.
    The old despots words coming back to haunt him.

  66. frog2

    I was only making a comment from my own point of view. Anyone should obviously feel free to post wherever they choose.

    I just happen to find the place both teeth-explodingly boring and repugnant in a pervasive way, like a bad smell which you cannot quite identify nor easily ignore.

    Clearwater seems to be a cheerleader of the Dribbly brain-share scheme, so he or she could be any of the usual suspects.

    This is zenit3m:

    Again, clearly you know absolutely nothing about the forum's real demographics. Weren't you complaining about cliques earlier? This sort of entitled gatekeeper mentality is the very definition of the clique mindset. And I think you'll find that many of the forum posters have been lurking and posting here on Cif for quite some time with or without your permission.

    It should be fun to pop in on Monday, to see how those who only post on work time cope with the insurgents, assuming that some of them will still be there.

    It will be like watching Jemima Puddleduck choking on the frog-spawn floating in her ditch-water world, which she had always pretended was caviar she was being spooned by the Holy Roman Emperor.

  67. Atoms- tho occasionally very good value,eg Leopold1904 on fire last 24hours. Off now. Seeya.

  68. Eddie

    Cheers for the interesting link you posted yesterday from the CRESC.And whilst i agree with you that historically lack of political will is largely responsible for UK plc not preserving and increasing the size of it's manufacturing sector government alone cannot now reverse the demise that has taken place.

    Historically British Banks have been reluctant to provide British manufacturers with the long term financial support they need to design,develop and produce goods that will sell on the open market.And British Banks and large manufacturing companies alike have historically invested most of their profits abroad rather than in the UK.So that already places British manufacturers at a disadvantage compared to say German manufactures where Banks take a long term view and manufacturing companies are more likely to invest more of their profits at home.

    The Germans also have a three tiered education system not disimilar to the one that has largely been dismantled in the UK other than in Ulster.But unlike the old system in the UK they have invested far more in good quality vocational training and apprenticeships for those who are not academic.Additionally there is a lot more kudos in Germany attached to graduates working in manufacturing than is the case in the UK where graduates are more likely to have degrees in 'softer' subjects and opt to work in the service sector.

    The more consensual style of management in Germany has ensured that industrial relations have been more harmonious than has been the case in the UK where industrial relations have always been more adversorial.And where workers are increasingly subjected to conditions that would be viewed as being intolerable in Germany.

    So if you combine all these factors -ie lack of long term investment,shortage of skilled workers and adversial industrial relations it becomes clear that any plans to revive British manufacturing are going to be dogged with problems certainly in the short term.And makes it at least understandable why successive UK governments have opted for the easy option which is to largely neglect British manufacturers whilst at the same time trying to encourage foreign manufacturers to invest here.An example being the Japanese motor manufacturers Honda,Nissan and Toyata who as part of their deal for investing in the UK insisted on single union deals,no strike deals and the imposition of Japanese style work practices.And by all accounts these factories have largely done well.

    However although the UK government provided financial incentives for these Japanese companie to invest in the UK it is primarily Japanese money that has paid for the capital equipment and training/retraining of the workforce.A workforce that has had to give up some of it's employment rights-eg no strike deal-in return for having a job.

  69. @Eddie

    One final point.The political will to bring about the changes that will improve life in the UK -including rebuilding a British manufacturing sector- is more likely to occur if we change to a PR electoral system rather than the one we've got.Which as we know elects governments only interested in maintaining the status quo.

  70. Hi All

    Where is the international aid for Libya - they could get easily enough into the west to help the thousands of displaced and injured people .

  71. Eddie

    so a huge punishment vote has changed the political scene in Ireland.

    Now the rebuilding begins - hope the new gvt. is upto it.

  72. @Paul, good summary there. I am a product of the apprentiship system, way back when in the late 60s...early 70s I did a nominally 5 year stint, paid almost nothing and training provided by an industry levy to the EITB. At around 4 years I had had enough and negotiated an early termination and went into electronic design. Later I managed to do a degree in Computer Science so that was an ambition achieved. Along the way I have had a really interesting work history, been into places as diverse as tanneries, steel forging plants, water meter remote data capture and so on. So I can claim to have been in a few factories and automated them to boot. But what Paul says is true, all the places I have worked no longer exist. I joke that I have brought down UK manufacturing single handed! So many missed opportunities, the sheer management incompetence throughout is a factor.

    While I am on this topic, referring to Atoms observation about India, this shows how they can make goods so much cheaper. They do not have the costs of local infrastructure, safety laws and a multitude of other overheads the western world supports. The way things are going we will of course converge, they will improve (slightly I would guess) while we slide downhill and when the lines cross parity of labour costs have been achieved!

  73. Montana

    I like your quote for today.

    Treachery is an interesting concept at state level.

    Under a dictator the 'treachery' can be a blossoming in the life of the people.

    The treachery concept has always been used as a means of state control - usually with extremes of cruelty.

  74. Have just noticed I suggested aid could enter Libya from the west - obviosly should have been east.

    Manufacturing here is dead - there is neither the political will nor the infrastructure to easily revive it .

    Apparently the processing and freezing of peas and other veg is counted as manufacturing - I think the picture is even blacker than we are told.

    I remember about 20 years ago small companies setting up to build home computers - completely overwhelmed by the big guys. One problem was that they lacked development capacity and relied upon buying in parts - most of which were almost instantly outdated.

  75. Have just spent the evening with small grandaughters one of whom presented me with a splendiferous drawing - a demonic pig (large horns and spikey tail) shoving Jesus over a cliff into shark infested seas. What the hell is that about? And where did she get it from? We're not big on talking about Jesus, never mind demonic pigs. Was very impressed.

    smtx if you're about - this is an intersting piece on the situation in Libya

    The tribes against the bunker

  76. I don't think manufacturing is entirely dead yet. The company I do work for is currently hiring loads of engineers and other skilled workers, to the point where there is fucking nowhere to park on site.

    Nap said something yesterday about most manufacturing companies in the UK being very small outfits, but I suspect that many of them are likely to be small sub-suppliers manufacturing components or tooling (rather than the 'tat' he suggested). That isn't necessarily a bad thing at all.

  77. From the Irish Times:

    Latest indications suggest Fine Gael will win 76 seats, Labour will take 36 and Fianna Fáil will get 25, including outgoing Ceann Comhairle Seamus Kirk. Sinn Féin looks set to take 12, Independents will win 13, the United Left Alliance will take four and the Green Party will lose all six of their seats. The turnout was 68.8 per cent.

    In Dublin, FF have imploded spectacularly and are on course to lose 12 out of 13 seats - current Finance Minister Brian Lenihan has kept his seat, but that's likely to be the only one for them in Dublin.

    Decent result for Labour (I think they probably did particularly well in Dublin at the expense of FF), total wipe-out for junior coalition partner Greens (are you watching, Lib Dems?) and a middling result for the Shinners.

    If it wasn't for the older voters (who'd vote FF if they were proven satanists) and rural voters (where individual TDs have large personal followings), Fianna Fáil would have disappeared down the shitter completely.

    Fine Gael are an unapologetically right-of-centre party and there will be cuts aplenty to come. The main interest is if they have the cojones to renegotiate the IMF/EU deal, promising to pay back speculators' debts.

    My own guess is that nothing will be done this year, but if the Eurozone moves strongly out of recession in 2012 or 2013, then the EU will allow bondholders to take a haircut and maybe the loan rates will drop. Until then, we're pretty much screwed.

  78. Hm, interesting Eddie. Thanks for the précis.

  79. Hello everyone; don't mind me. Just checking the lines of communication. My last post disappeared into the ether.

  80. Is it just me or am I the only person wondering WTF is wrong with our journalists these days?
    Anyone with half a brain and a broadband connection can "google" anything and be bombarded with more information than they could possibly process in a lifetime.
    I posted a couple of links yesterday but I'm not a journalist and I don't expect anyone to take any notice of what I post nor my opinions but surely the "professionals" have the same resources.
    Why aren't they using them?
    Why aren't they telling the story of how we have all been took to the cleaners by a bunch of money grubbing,selfish,lying con artists who have committed the most breathtakingly audacious heist in human history?

  81. chekhov

    The question of why the media kowtow to the politicians and the money men is unanswerable.

    In many cases the media orgs are part of the same set up of course. Even the simple question of why CiF is slow to criticise ATOS goes unanswered.

    We have almost no campaigning journos left - many of them are independent.

  82. @sheff re your link Asia Times 'The tribes against the bunker' by Pepe Oscobar, No I didnt find it interesting;I found it bloody patronising.he writes; 'Libya's is a tribal revoultion,it was not,and is not,being led by young urban interlectuals,like in Egypt,or by a working class(most of it in fact composed of foreign workers) Even thought the ACTORS of the anti-Muammer Gaddafi uprising MAY be a mix of ordinary Libyans,educated,and/or unemployed youth,a section of the urban middle classes and defectors from the army and the security services,what trespasses all of them is the tribe'.
    Im not at all intersted in the opinions of some journalist prick from in Brazil to be honest.

  83. 'voices from a Benghazi Rally' you tube.

  84. BTW; don't come back with the "it's human nature" bollocks 'coz that just assumes that everyone thinks like you do and I don't believe they do.
    On the contrary I think most people would like to collaborate with their fellow citizens and give everyone a chance and not exploit human beings as nothing more than a commodity to squeeze the pips out of.

  85. Well, the rumour on the street is that The Guardian, for one, gets a shedload of income from advertising public sector jobs and stuff, and, given that they're already losing money faster than a stag do in a strip joint anyway, they're probably not dead keen to rock the boat, depending on how/if/when the contract is renewed.

    Obviously, if they do sit around without speaking out for too long, there won't be much in the way of a public sector left to advertise, so I don't suppose they've really thought that one through properly.

    Still, what can you do??

    Most of the other "media" is owned by some form of multi-national behemoth/Obscenely wealthy tycoon, so they're all, by and large, pretty damn pleased with the way things are panning out!!

    So, there you have it. A free and independent press, my big, fat arse!!

  86. James, I was thinking about the Graun and public sector advertising the other day. Effectively, the coalition is creating a ban on new posts being created and probably a good few existing ones will disappear through natural wastage.

    That will crucify the Graun's bottom line and it won't become apparent how badly until results are out in 2012.

    I wonder if the whole GUT thing is just a sliver of a part of a wider tightening of belts? The Graun made 100+ people redundant last year/the year before and income is down progressively, year on year. Sales of the deadwood Guardian are also tanking. Only the Indy sells less out of all the nationals.

    On the plus side, that could leave Hanman plus two 12 year old interns trying to mod the entire CiF site.

  87. The public sector jobs advertised in The Graun are diminishing - just 169 goverment jobs on the site today. Plus, it seems like half the jobs advertised in The Graun these days are voluntary / unpaid.

  88. I've only just now finished reading what took place on yesterday's thread after my last comment. Two things:

    As to the cursing, it comes naturally to us Celtic types.

    Ah. So maybe it's my Irish & Cornish ancestry that's to blame!


    Anyone want to guess how much trouble Habib is in for not giving me a theme song?

  89. And that's the thing isn't it, Eddie!!

    By keeping quiet, crossing their little fingers, and hoping for the best, they're missing out on the opportunity to actually get some readers back, by, you know, doing some of that old fashioned journalism shit wot used to be knocking about!!

    Because even though they stuck a suggestive, cheeky backside in Nick's face before the election, it's a pretty safe bet that there's not a lot of love for The G amongst the main coalition movers and shakers, so they're on a hiding to a whole lot of nuffink!!

    At the very least, they should try to go down swinging, right!!??

    But nope, they're definitely going with the 'let's just sit here quietly, and talk about Kittenz, and slankets, and do the odd piece about 'Cameron the gent'' approach, and some shit about being on the forefront of the new media revolution.

    (When you put all your remaining eggs in one basket, and that basket is CIF shaped, it probably ain't gonna end well....)

    Still, them's the breaks.....and it's not like a lit of people haven't tried to warn 'em!!

  90. Montana

    Is it more or less than after his shonky showing with the 'let everyone know it's Mobtana's birthday' duties!?!?

  91. Anyway, have to go now for a bit, so apologies for the near illegibility of my posts this evening (Ipod's are shite...) and apologies to habib too. I may've gone done got him in more trouble....unintentionally, like!!

  92. 'Mobtana' being one of the more unforgivable typos....

    Again, apologies!!

    Have a good evening, folks!!

  93. @montana heres a song for ya. Tanya Stephens-'Turn the other cheek'(you tube)

  94. James, it's not the kind of thing that the Groan is going to shout about, but their ability to do eye-catching journalism - you know, proper hackery involving investigations, sources and shoe leather as opposed to opinion waffle and churnalism - has been severely compromised over the last few years.

    From 'The Register':

    The Guardian was scooped by The Telegraph with its expenses scandal and the newspaper's financial position is more precarious than other ailing broadsheets. Its top investigative reporters such as David Hencke and David Pallister have taken voluntary redundancy - it's really down to a skeleton crew of just two, and it's outsourcing its IT operations.

    You can add occasional freelancers onto their investigative resources, such as Nick Davies, but then his most notable investigation last year was into Pentameter 2 and he was roundly pissed on by a steady stream of CiF contributors because his facts displeased the party line.

    So you're left with 'opinion pieces', partisan shit delivered at high cost. Polly famously is on £120k+, Rusbridger £500k+ and you could guess that White, Milne, Ashley, Jenkins etc are all similarly generously remunerated.

    That's where the fat is at The Graun. You can't skimp on basic reporting duties or you have no readership, but I'm damned sure you can live without trite re-working of PR releases and the same opinions re-hashed 52 times a year.

    I never thought I'd hear myself say this, but Monbiot alone is emerging with credit at the Graun. He's digging into stories, applying keen critical faculties and producing stuff of substance.

    The rest of them? They can be booted out the door and no one will miss them. But they won't be. A dozen poor saps working for a pittance will be sacrificed before one of the great and good bullshitters meets the pavement.

  95. Spike said...


    Here's a suggestion: the day you stop announcing that I've declared my undying love for Stalin and suicide bombers in the hope that people won't check up on your lies, I won't have to ask for any of your posts to be deleted.

    Tony Shallcross, the fact that you even consider appointing yourself the role of censor is indicative that your Stalinist roots have yet to wither and die.

    Nowhere have I announced that you have an undying love for Stalin, as I doubt you could be that lacking in basic humanity, but your equivocation about Stalinist regimes and Palestinian suicide bombers is sufficiently documented for any objective observer to conclude that I do not lie. Maybe my interpretation of your words is closer to the truth than you would have preferred, but as others have confirmed, time and again, it is a credible interpretation. You may not like it, you doubtless would prefer to be considered the life and soul of WDYWTTA along with Kizbot and Brusselsexpat, but you have nailed your colours to the mast far too many times to be accepted as just another innocent passer by.

    You leave me with no doubt about your role as self-appointed censor and comrade of the moderators - a long time Stalinist tradition, and something that to my knowledge and to their credit, neither Kizbot nor Brusselsexpat has resorted to.

  96. "As to the cursing, it comes naturally to us Celtic types."

    Perhaps, but I don't really agree with these stereotypes.

    Another one seems to be that Celtic=free spirited left winger. The most rightiwng person I have ever known was an Irish midwife- I told her I was unemployed (recently recovering from a long period of depression and strong psychiatric medication- which she totally ignored) and she subjected me to a ten minute rant about feckless fathers breeding, having kids and not living as a family, how she saw it all the time in her hospital with all the teenage pregnanices apparently going to live a blissfull life on benefits with a free council house thrown in.

    Anyway, yes I admit you know more about manufacturing Thauma, and I hope we get more of it. But while me might have the research, development and design, most of the production is in Asia.(a la James Dyson who got ripped to shreds by the very first comment on his article about his 'devotion to British manufacturing'-- someone said 'that's why you moved production to Malaysia'.) I suppose we could still have an industry that caters to the domestic/EU market and more so if we be more protectionist raise import tariffs.

  97. Are suggestions ofreferring Gaddafi and co. to international a bit prmature ? They are more likely to strengthen determination to fight it out until the end.

    we are beginning to hear murmurings about aid going in - far too slow a response to the situation there.

  98. In other news about myself it turns out that I am not going to Russia. I knew as soon as I signed up for the whole thing that it was quite literally a coin toss whether or not I'd go because there were so many problems with getting the docs for a work visa and it took so long that it is not worth going. I'm not particularly saddened, a bit disappointed, especially as during the three months I was trying to get it sorted out I passed over some oppurtunities for work and I also had to spend a bit of money on things like medical tests, documentation (bastard Foreign office raked in the most) etc.

    It wasn't too much of a bother. The most important thing is that I continue my OU work, and luckily for me I've got a job interview coming up on Monday. It's a charity position, got for me under the soon to be axed by the coalition Future Jobs Fund.

    I'm down at my olds man'd on the south coast right now, was up in the smoke today, (didn't know there were so many Millwall fans outside Lunnon). Flying back north tomorrow.

  99. @bitey

    Something to enjoy while I'm away for a few days.

    I'd enjoy it more if you said a few years.

  100. Evening all. Been a rough few days. Hope you're all well.
    Mum was hospitalised today, pneumonia (on top of a bunch of preexisting old lady / weak heart complications). She's in the US. No insurance. $4000 for this evening alone. Dad's going spare.
    Next time someone tells me how crap the NHS is, I may have to do violence....

  101. Morning all

    @Meerkatjie-sorry to hear about your mum.Don't know what to suggest about the financial aspects but i hope your mum soon gets better.:-)

    @Charlie-sorry the trip to Russia didn't work out this time but if you really want to go hopefully there'll be other opportunities in the future.

    @Hi Leni-the situation in Libya is certainly hotting up with a final showdown brewing up in Tripoli.IMO if someone assassinated Gadaffi it would save a lot of bloodshed.Hope you're well.

  102. @Meerkatjie

    That's awful. I hope she's OK.

  103. Yeah, it's no problem Paul. The way I see it, it's as much there loss as mine, which is a pity for them too. I'll probably go again at some point in my life but not to work.

    Meerkatjie...that's absolutely awful. We certainly can be grateful for the NHS. $4000 for one day with pneumonia, honestly. Best wishes for a speedy recovery for her.


  104. Eddie

    Yup, the reliance on the Toynbees et al is part of what's costing them, both in terms of money, but also, if BTL comments are anything to go by, credibility and readership.
    She does generate page hits, of course, along with the likes of Kettle and Jenkins, but it's mostly drive-by, point and laugh, WTF are you on about, see-this -is-exactly-why-I-don't-pay-for-the-Guardian-anymore type comments, thus reducing the number of refreshes/returning to debate commenters.

    Then, on the other hand, there's Bidisha, who's largely the same sort of thing. Except she's an absolute fucking mentalist, and is, I can only assume, kept around because someone quite high up once reckoned she was going to be 'the shit that will single-handedly save our asses', and they're either still waiting, or nobody else's got the balls to point out that they've really backed the wrong horse!!

    And finally, we've got the Penz, (or Bidisha v 2.0), who's being groomed to be the Bidisha that Bidisha wasn't, and, by the looks of it, may well have been picked by whoever was responsible for Bidisha 1.0, because she's already become a Bidisha type joke, just like the original, but in only a fraction of the time!!

    And, much worse than the fact that all of the above are largely shite on their own merits, is the fact that they often detract from the few good articles/writers that do appear on CIF. Nobody actually wants to read, hang about, discuss on these threads, because they're all waiting for the next clanger from the usual suspects, and they've already rolled the shit they want to throw about into aerodynamic shapes and whatnot. And, obviously if they don't do well on CIF, they won't make it into the print version/get a regular gig, and we're back to the 'tried and tested' toynbees et al, thus completing the vicious circle of fucktitude!!

    It's sort of sad, in a way, but again, if they're going to be such a bunch of elitist, deluded, self-absorbed and ignorant cunts, it's not like they haven't played a part in their own downfall.......

  105. Hi Paul

    About 5,000 people have crossed from Libya into Tunisia in the last 24 hours. Tunisia appealing for help.

    As UK helped to maintain Gadaffi in power we should be responding much more quickly to the needs of Libyans now.

    If anybody was ever foolish enough to believe that the ordinary citizens of any country ever mattered to the elite are fools.


    Hope your mum recovers quickly - how the majority here would manage without the NHS I really don't know. To suddenly find huge sums of money to cover treatment for a major illness is impossible for most of us.

  106. Apologies, I was writing my post above for ages, so I missed the other comments!!

    Best wishes, Meerkatjie!!

  107. thanks Leni and James.

    Watching the UN debate the issue of Libya, and fighting the urge to throw things at the screen.

  108. Rapidly losing sympathy with some of the GUT ers.OK they've lost their site and many of them were clearly heavily dependant on it for support and contact.I genuinely feel sorry for them and the Guardian have clearly treated them badly but it's not the end of the fuckin' world.

    I might be wrong but i reckon the Guardian are going to split waddya with one thread for serious suggestions for articles and serious debate and one for chat.And the GUT ers could play a part in developing that if they wanted too.

    With everything that's going on here in the UK and in the world at large is it too much to ask the gutted self satisfied contingent of the GUT community to put things into perspective?

  109. I think the bloke comparing the loss of GUT to the situation in Libya was my final straw, Paul... (however humorously it may or may not have been intended.)

  110. In other news, the Librul Democraytes is broke!!

    So those of you hoping that they'd be annihilated at the polls next time around, might not have to wait that long!!

    But remember though folks, it's important not to revel in the misfortune of others, so, should a lib dem MP approach you, cap in hand, resist the urge to laugh, or gloat, and be sure to generously and benevolently point them in the direction of the nearest big society food bank, work house or homeless shelter!!

  111. And on that happy note, I shall bid you all goodnight!!

    Have a good one!!

  112. @Leni

    Apparently Obama and Germany's Merkel are telling Gadaffi to step down.Whether that makes a blind bit of difference is of course another matter.


    I really do take my hat off to you the way you patiently dealt with some of those GUT ers on waddya.Especially with what you're having to deal with.Don't think i could have done it .

    @Nite James.

  113. I see James has already mentioned the tragic plight of the Libdems.

    They are trying to raise money if any of you are looking for a safe home for your extra cash.

  114. Paul

    might as well politely ask maddened dog to let go as ask G to step down.

    I fear he will fight to the end taking as many with him as possible.

    Quite what will then happen to those now supporting him remains to be seen.

    the former Justice minister seems to be trying to set himself up in power - I cannot imagine that any amount of criticism of Gaddafi he may now voice can absolve him from involvement in past repression.

    There are a lot of people with every thing to lose when G finally goes down.

  115. @Leni

    Sanctions are to be applied to Gadaffi and his family.Dunno whether this is just a cosmetic gesture given that Gadaffi and co have probably got a fortune stashed away in a 'friendly' country somewhere.Liechtenstein perhaps?

    Will Gadaffi and family really fight to the death?Will they be called to account for their actions as the Libyan people are demanding?Or at the last minute will they all be granted asylum somewhere?As i said before it would probably be better all round if Gadaffi was assassinated along with his sons.

  116. Just got in. Rocky Mountain Way works.

  117. And a personal favourite of mine from Randy Crawford

  118. Hi Paul

    I was waiting to call my dad. Managed to get through to him at about 2am. I guess I was just distracting myself till then.