Saturday, 22 December 2007

Still on the run.

No MyT work for a couple of days. As yet, no with-drawal symptoms. My last post there drew a response from an ex-MyT'r who had set up a small operation on a social network basis. I joined as I was aware that going cold turkey might be difficult after the high activity levels of blogging. If the new thing directs me down the paths that made me quit MyT I shall drop that as well.

Wednesday, 19 December 2007

What was that about 99 sheep?

I have given up my My Telegraph blog. No particular reason that I could identfy as responsible. The DT blog is quite cerebral with a lot of deep thinkers and serious commentators and that led me to explore their ideas and thoughts.

I was learning more than I wanted. Allied to this greater awareness of how this world was sliding down the stairs on a tea tray was the realisation that there was little I could ever do to ameloriate the situation still less offer any solution. I have little interest in being an onlooker; I always want to get down in the dirt with the players.

So, I came away. For a rest? Maybe. I want to continue with my steps to discovering if I can write. So here I am.

Sunday, 16 December 2007

Ah! Blogging

I returned to this blog area today to find something from the archives. Awaiting me was a comment from Wireless Guy dated 9 November 2007. Due to weird persons such as him, comments are moderated. I rejected this one.

However, as he seems to wish to use this method of communication, it might help if I explain why his comments here will always be rejected and those made elsewhere reported for total removal or amendment.

The short answer is that I do not wish to communicate with him in any way, shape or form. I have made this clear to him when he was using email. I also advised him that I would not hesitate to contact his ISP if he again sent abusive or unwanted traffic. He seems to have understood that. I stand ready to issue the same warning regarding his harassment on any blog of mine.

I do not know what his problem is. He makes reference to events in my past but these are either founded on his misinterpretation of my actions or just sheer animus. He refers to the death of my daughter/his sister. What he does not know is that I discussed my attitude with her whilst she was still lucid. We agreed there was no good outcome for her. We also agreed other matters; these were personal her to me and I do not intend to debate them with him.

Another matter that rankles is my attitude to her husband and children. I do not know what transpired but after his intrusion at the latter stages of my daughter's resulted in her daughters feeling unable or unwilling to contact me or my wife. I associate his appearance with this situation. If they cannot discuss the problem, I cannot assist. I know not what I have done wrong. Their father has confirmed Wireless Guys part in their changed attitude but says, quite rightly, it is a matter for them and not his resolution.

On odd occasions he refers to the death of my mother. He can have no idea of that which he complains. Her consultants confirmed that there was nothing further the medical services could do and recommended I give consent to cessation of treatment. She and I discussed this when she was aware of what was going on. Anything I did after her death was agreed by and with her. I do not accept any criticism from him. His intervention and allegations are unwanted and slightly distressing. It is matters such as this that could cause me to complain to those who provide his Internet access.

He goes on to other sundry matters. These include the question "have you stopped beating your wife?" and seems to expect either a yes or no answer. Again, I see the matter as nothing to do with him. I would point out that my wife and I recently celebrated fifty years of marriage; if she is being beaten she looks well on it and is prepared for the next few years.

His own behaviour would support adverse comment.

Anything that comes from this wireless guy needs to be taken with a large dose of salt. If there is any opportunity I would add legal action to the complaint to his service provider. He may see me as his father. This is biologically true but I certainly do not see him as my son such that he may feel he has rights to speak out and be heard.

Wednesday, 5 September 2007

Whither now - SatNav required

So - it does seem as if the MyT blog has been cleansed. There are still a couple of things that need to be sorted out but doubtless that will follow.

Now, what happens with this blog? I resurrected it to give me the facility to get away from the over-weening MyT protection of TCP. Where I could get my opinions across without someone lodging a spoiling complaint.

I think I might try and run them both.

Tuesday, 4 September 2007

End of the world as we knew it!

Well, today we can well and truly claim that goodness will triumph over evil. Bit dramatic but that is how it feels. The despotic and dyspeptic Slocombe has departed from MyT. Long rambling justification which completely evaded the fact that he was almost universally reviled.

I do have a few doubts. His sudden collapse came very soon after, at long long last, we got TCS to organise a forensic analysis of activities as recorded on the server logs. My personal opinion, based upon the long leash he had enjoyed for so long, is that he was given the alternative of Go or Be Pushed. Either was he is off.

Or is he? One of the failings of the registration process is that all one requires is a valid email address. These are as scarce as gay condoms in Brighton. He could well come back. The bogeyman returns.

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Watch out - snipers!

The decay continues of what could have been a first class blogging facility run by the Daily Telegraph. Some good forensic work by outraged and disappointed members has shown very clearly that there is something untoward afoot. Shane (TCS in my Army-like nomenclature) has appointed a side kick to undertake some sort of inquiry. Doubtless, it will be just as the Dr Kelly job - your terms of reference are that if you find anything dodgy you must not publish them.

I have given up. I will post what I want in the manner I want.

Sunday, 2 September 2007

Return, tail between legs, downcast

Well, I have been away some what - 4 months? Went to the blog run by the Daily Telegraph. I say 'run' - after this update you may form some other opinion.

It all started off well. Very easy site to use - this because it has limited features. Limited HTML, few formatting options. Only upload one image per post. It was a lively site with most posts getting an average of, I suppose, 20 or so comments. These were a happy mix of serious, facile, what-the-hell-is-that-about and in-jokes. They have a section which establishes the most popular post, comment, saved item and bloggers. Each post has the ability to vote Yes or No in agreement with the post and these are consolidated to an overall popularity percentage. I'll do a link with the Guest Blog and you will see what I mean.

This Top of the Pops feature is well on the way to killing the whole thing. Registration requires only that one have a email address. Canny posters looking to get themselves or their work included registered many times and this gave them the facility to manipulate the results. What they were doing was very obvious and logs were maintained of weird activity which suggested the doppelgangers. The blog moderators poo hooed the double identity creation but did not amplify how they prevented this. Some of us, to check, used multiple emails to see where any hidden check might be. There was none. We were able to make posts in more than one identity before cancelling what we saw as an abuse and loophole not closed.

Another built-in by design failure was the ability to complain about a post or comment. This was directly and all too easily available from the post. Using the Complain About feature allowed ill-minded members to stifle any comment or post that revealed their quirks or double-identities or manipulation tactics. The post and comments are then removed from general view whilst, alleged, they have been cleared by the moderators. In all the time I have been using the MyT blog, I have not seen any resurrection of a complained about post or comment. Surely, not every complaint can have been justified for cause? Feed-back from the blog fuhrers is almost non-existent giving none the ability to correct their future work to avoid it's abortion.

So, if anyone here is thinking of designing a blogging application, the MyT is a good example of what not to do.

Now, without further ado, one of my posts that was killed and an example of the writing of the person I highlight in that post. Enjoy.

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Philip S. is a much talked about man at the moment. It is not just a few awkward members doing this but people one rarely reads of are commenting as well. It cannot be easy for him as he doubtless still sees himslef as a founder member. Maybe he has some idea that he is the blog. I did entertain the start of a wonderful conspiracy theory that TCP does not really exist but is someone invented by Shane or such to give the blog that appearance of success that any application initiated by a newspaper requires if it is not to be a chain around a even more seniors' neck. This conspiracy would involve under the table payments and action in manipulating statistics. I cleared Shane after finding him and TCP on site at the same time, However, we still have to wonder why such a sharp executive seems unable to comprehend the logs and information addressed for his perusal.

I used to get quite annoyed at TCP. He appeared to have his own private line when he complained about a comment or a post. I imagined a dedicated moderator alert as the HMV dog Nipper for when His Master's Voice came on - Exterminate, exterminate. He made quite immoderate and extraordinanry claims in his own work without giving any reference or other citation. All it needed was for him to say it - instant truth andconfirmation. However, as his work became even more like that of Captain Queeg and his cache of strawberries, I sensed that there could well be something like megalomania at work. The symptoms were just so accurate; "Megalomania is an unrealistic belief in one's superiority, grandiose abilities, and even omnipotence. It is characterized by a need for total power and control over others, and is marked by a lack of empathy for anything that is perceived as not feeding the self". He needs to controll everything and this to an extreme. I imagine that much of his life is now out of his control. He will be crippled and look terribly unhealthy and old beyond his actual years. As an ex-serviceman. he smokes 60 a day. He cannot sell his house and has lost so much of his limited capital. He cannot communicate or understand so much around him in China and his wife would seem poorly educated. She would be of limited support on his trips to Spain where his conquistador lifestyle delusions give him comfort unattainable in China.

So all in all, the poor chap deserves our sympathy rather than the scorn and derision that he now attracts.Were he a dog, he would need a rescue center. I think he deserves to be treated like a dog for the rest of his few years here.

Ave Atque Vale

I include an article that comments on the Nazi attitudes to racial purification by the sad old Slocombe. No action was taken to kill the original article.

Thursday, 10 May 2007

And that is it

Final posting from me. I've lost interest; all I seem to write is bad news week.

Army blogging

I posed the question as to whether an enemy could gain any useful information from blogs written by servicemen. Nice of Slate to answer the question for me eh?

Wednesday, 9 May 2007

Assassination hopes run high

Seems that the Yankee poodle Yankee fool will get a pay off from the Bush regime after all. The idea that this duplicitous war-mongering criminal has any place in the Middle East is ludicrous. Truly, a Ambassador is a man sent abroad to lie for his Country.

However, I live in hope. The Middle East has a fine history of assassinating those who cause the war lords problems.

Excuse me - do I live here?

I am not yet a total reclusive hermit at the back of some dark and dank cave. Additionally, and to the best of my knowledge of course, I am not yet fully infiltrated by the Altzheimer's illness.

However, I do not recognise this treatise as being the same Scotland as the one I've been living in for the last nigh on seven years. So, I have to repeat my T-shirted request "If found wandering and confused, please phone Norma on 01361 ******"

Tuesday, 8 May 2007

That ain't too bad

In England, serious criminal cases such as children chalking hop-scotch boxes on the pavement attract really wide spread attention.

Seems things are different in America. A truly horrendous murder of a young man and a girl failed to gain much publicity outside the state where it took place and one adjoining state. Just some detail of the murders -

Christian and Newsom had gone on a date Saturday, January 6, 2007, but did not return home. Newsom's body was found adjacent to railroad tracks in East Knoxville the next afternoon. According to investigators, he had been shot and his body had been burned. He had apparently been raped. Some reports state that his penis had been severed from his body prior to his death.

"When the perpetrators were finished with Christopher, they allegedly turned their attention to Channon. She was beaten, gang raped and at times urinated upon. When her killers finally had their fill of her, they cut off one of her breasts while she was still alive, poured bleach down her throat, in an attempt to cover up evidence. As with Christopher, they set her body on fire; however, for unknown reasons, they did not dump her body but instead placed it in a trashcan inside the apartment"

And the reason there was only limited reporting of this? Too grim for publication - no. Seems that there was insufficient novelty in what happened. Extreme degrees of horror quite often appear in the media. Some commentators have said that this is due to a supposed media bias which supposedly provides more coverage to cases in which whites allegedly attack blacks (such as the Duke Lacrosse case) than vice versa.

I think I prefer to read about kids and hopscotch.

Rodeo night

Big event in Bush-land.

I had half-expected to see Bush with his Yo-poodle at his side. Maybe they had learned their lesson after the Wide MouthFrog described herself as England's First Lady in the publicity blurb for one of her mortgage-supplementing tours. Cannot have two First Ladies at the same time.

Our farewell tour of the land around Arizona was described as The Final Round Up (or Two Old Farts in a Canyon). Given the ages of Liz and Phil, maybe they felt the same emotions.

Monday, 7 May 2007

Hackneyed story comes true

I suppose it has provided the plot for countless essays submitted by creative writing students. "Man told had incurable disease. Will die in weeks" goes out and has a high old time. Then - mixed emotions - not ill at all. Will live for ages and ages but has no money or assets.

If the key to successful writing is to write about what you know, this guy should be on a winner.

Michael Yon

A very competent war zone blogger writes steps out of his environment.

Michael Yon.

Racist bigot

I had been saving this as a tag for a suitable blog. Cannot say where I got it from as I have lost/forgotten that bit. I am going to just put it up and forget it. May come in handy if anyone has that discussion with me.

I am a racist. And a sexist. It’s true: I believe in making judgements according to individual merit, without regard to race, color, creed, sex, or national origin.

Corresponds with the usual criticism. Shows why I don't care when accused.

Sunday, 6 May 2007

Post Secret.

This is just one revelation posted in to Post Secret. By the very nature of the project, the majority of those published reveal people with serious problems in their life.

Whether or not this anonymous disclosure has any beneficial effect I cannot say.

I do not intend to find out.

Does anyone care?

Whenever there is the death of a soldier on active service it seems inevitable that there is a debate about insufficient equipment or equipment not suitable for the purpose. The politicians, safe at home in the bosom of their family, then claim that the commanders on the ground are getting everything they ask for. Seems that they do not convince the man responsible for procuring the stuff who has issued a report on how he sees things.

And people are discussing what Tony's legacy should be.

Saturday, 5 May 2007


Don't know if the system will allow you to see my site meter record of places from where this blog has been accessed. Just looking, seems I have lived in or visited the majority of them - excluding Oz and Kiwi Land.

So - come on, don't be shy. Drop me a quick note about how things are there right now. I may be able to tell you what they were like for me going back anything up to 55 years ago. Save looking in the profile -

Taking refuge in MY World

I know the preamble to this page points out that when here you are in MY World and it may not be exactly what this modern pc loving world is used to.

However, there are times when I am very glad that we live in two separate worlds. I still cannot get used to people on mobile phones announcing to all and sundry that they are on The Train.

Fresh meat

I bet a few of the Bearded Ladies are looking forward to her arrival in their midst.

Change in slow motion.

So, the local elections that were forecast as likely to drastically change the face of politics are now over. Quite a few changes but my own opinion is that they were a bit of a slow burn rather than a bonfire. What did surprise me was that apathy seems to have protected B.Liar from a nation where criticism of his final years was strong.

Maybe this means that there is a silent majority at work here. Or was it due to the moral majority? We seem to have a resurrection of the Silent Majority (UK Branch)but it seems few took notice of this rabid bunch. I doubt that we here in UK could ever sustain a Moral Majority movement but my only knowledge of that organisation was gained from Jerry Falwell's preaching heard on Sunday TV in America waiting for the football to start.

ID Cards - the full story

I wrote about ID cards a day or so ago. My home-grown IT guru has responded. Sounds that the idea is as daft as I suspected. Even before the government adds it's own cock-ups to the weak idea that the ID card is any guarantee of identity.

Any form of digital ID is going to be very difficult. How will you decide that I am the me that I pretend to be, who will authorise you to issue me with a certificate, and how will you prevent people from duplicating that chain of events? If we assume that you have some magical trick that allows you to verify who I am and who you are in a manner that authorises you to issue me with a certificate of some sort, what do we do about reading, writing and updating the data that is on the chip. If for example my doctor is able to read my medical history, what is to prevent the insurance company from also being able to do this? When they discover that gene-x-102 is a very clear sign that I have a 99% chance of having a heart attack some days prior to my 64th birthday, who will be able to read that from my card? Passports were supposed to be quite difficult to copy. The criminals avoid this problem by paying large sums of money to people who issue them with real passports. Money is supposed to be very difficult to copy, but the criminals managed to do that one reasonably easily. Chip&Pin was already broken before they issued it in the UK. In other parts of the world, they capture information at the cash machine, generate a copy of your card and go off and use this for a few hours. The same thing will happen with digital
ID.The problem is that the great unwashed will all think that everything is hyper secure when the exact opposite is actually the case.Look at the requirements.

I want to have a secure card.I want to store more than one set of information on that card.I want more than one group of readers to be able to access ONLY the data that relates to them.I want to be able to have some form of appeals process as a means to correct information that is inaccurate. Four little requirements that mean that dual-key public/private password schemes will
not work for this. Just thinking about some form of secure authentication protocol that allows some authority to issue empty cards is horrendous. There are people who do not have a current passport or driving license. There are other people who have very good forged passports and driving licenses. My bank and credit card is not proof of who I am. Whilst I could get my mum to write a letter explaining who I am, how will you know that she is my mum? What happens to the droves of people in the UK who do not speak English. Just as I am able to obtain a passport, credit card, drivers license, P45 and letter from my family doctor saying I am who I am, I could reasonably easily get the same set of documents to prove that I was Mandy Smith. If you are prepared to issue them on the basis of my showing you my claim slip for unemployment and a bill from the
gas board, then I am not prepared to accept them as proof of who you are.Lets do the next clever trick. How will the copper know that the person and the card belong together. Clearly a photo is not enough or you would be happy with a passport or drivers license. You would need some form of scanner. You would need to have quite a lot of these scanners. Anyone that wanted to read my card and verify that it really was me would have to have one. Lets assume that we are only talking about 100,000 scanners. 2% of these would be bent. So 200 chances
that someone can circumvent the system. That is 199 more than I wanted to know about. Now lets assume that they manage to resolve all of those problems.What will they do about buggers like you and me who refuse to get one? What will they do for people like me who are British citizens who live abroad? What will they do when I bring Katrin on a visit to the UK?If they managed to introduce something today, it would take less than three weeks to work out how to crack it. It would then take only a few days until we saw the first card copying and duplication.

Friday, 4 May 2007

Attn Ms Rice

Current affairs have put this lady's image back on the media.

All I have to say is that if she wants to make an old man very happy spending his last few years in her company, she knows where I am!

Some mistake surely?

I think it is an accepted fact that what industry chooses to call Customer Service is just a disaster. And that was before they out-sourced things to India. As a racist bigot, I have to refrain from commenting on what happens there. So, it was nice to see what happened when someone escalated his Mac complaint up to the very gates of executive heaven. Steve Jobs, the man himself. We have to believe that it was a Jobs initiative and not his executive assistant doing good by stealth.

I went Mac after a particularly harrowing period with the Microsh*t system. My usual IT guru declined interest so I had to do it all without that helping hand that technophobes need. And yet, it was all so easy. Everything seemed simple and intuitive once one had grasped some basic ideas and rules. I did once get the whole thing so corrupted that it had to go into a local Centre to get it's guts straightened out but that was easy, quick and cheap to achieve. I've had to come back to Gates Land for the Internet but one day I will set off down the Mac yellow brick road and learn how to get what I want from my Apple.

Thursday, 3 May 2007


Rory Bremner is very clever. The make-up people deserve every penny they get. This sketch contains all the Blair tics and tacs. Pity the real man could not have been so productive.

Land of the Brave.

America is known as Land of the Brave, Home of the Free. There are many brave men and women risking their health, limbs and life to maintain the Freedom so it seems a little strange that they themselves are having their freedom limited.

I am sure that the ability to openly express one's fears and feelings is a great morale booster for service people in settings of constant danger. There will also be occasions when they are frustrated by their commanders or by the general bloody-mindedness of military life. To limit their ability to open up is to lessen their morale.

I cannot see that any restriction will greatly improve any security aspects. There will always be ways for an enemy to judge the will and drive of their opponents without reading their mail. There are many locals who have access to military camps and they would be a good source. My suspicion is that the new moves are designed to make sure that the spin and propaganda put out by the top brass is not questioned. There are those on the ground who have doubts.

National ID cards

I have to confess that I am not sure where lies the project to issue us with ID cards. I do know that it generated immense argument into the pro and cons. These concerned not just the question of having the cards but also what information they might contain as part of the verification process and just where they would be necessary. The cost was enormous.

Our government has a history of fouled up IT projects. Late delivery, inadequate satisfaction of the design criteria, cost over-runs; just about anything that could go wrong does. On the other hand, America seems capable of implementing such systems. So, it was interesting to read of concerns about the setting up and administration of a national ID card there. My own 2P worth which I will throw in for free is that old security adage that what one man is capable of designing, there will always be another man who will know how to circumvent the safeguards.

A right turn up - trousering the cash

Whilst fully understanding the place of litigation in American society, I think this Judge might be said to be - er - tearing the arse out of things. I suppose the higher the threat, the more likely the party being sued will settle for a far lesser sum outside court.

Wednesday, 2 May 2007

Almost a perfect day

I spent most of yesterday out and about or reading and it was not until about eleven o'clock last night that I heard any news broadcast. Standing there in my crisp clean jim jams stirring my cup of Horlicks, I wasn't really listening even then. However, I was suddenly aware of some sort of subliminal message "Brown" "Indiscretion" "Gay lover" "Resigns".

Dash to lounge and volume upwards turned. Damn. Wrong Brown. This is one of those with a 'e' at the end. Yet another victim of the press hyena pack. I'm quite sure that his being gay was not exactly a state secret - people working at his level have few secrets. Still lives with his mother - hmnn. It was for quite another reason he resigned. Fiscal integrity and personal standards are essentials when at the top of the tree where one's decisions have the effect that his do. He left because he had had to admit to telling lies in a court of law. And yet, the gay thing was responsible in a way. He so feared disclosure that he lied. To be ambarrassed about that in this day and age does seem unusual; goodness knows, we have enough who wave their difference like a banner and revel in their sexual choice.

But, he chose to come out in a very public way. Good luck to him. Apart from any other concern, the financial impact was pretty sensational. It seems he has certainly lost £3.5 million he would have been entitled to and may well lose a further £12 million. Ouch. And it does not end there. As we heteros would say, "No piece of ass is worth that much"

Royal Tour

Our Queen has a hectic tour of America on her agenda. There is a lot there for anyone but when we think of an aged person doing all this we have to show respect. So long as she stays away from the little old ladies with blue rinse hair and tennis shoes, she'll be OK. We got taken on by the Little League ladies and they ran us right off our feet being so keen to show us all their treasures.

The suggestion that the main part of her visit will be to apologise for B.Lair has not been officially discounted said a Palace spokeswoman.

Joining up

Wonder what he did to get such personal attention?

In Memoriam

Tuesday, 1 May 2007

Own goal - sort of

I think ironic is the word I am looking for here.

A fundamentalist group leader is killed, not by a hovering Apache helicopter or screming A10 fighter plane but in an internal struggle. Saved us the job and a good result so I suppose it does not really matter how one describes it.

Look back in anger - Ten Years down the drain

As the tenth anniversary (is that the right word - I've always thought that anniversaries were things to be celebrated; maybe commerated is a better choice?) draws near the craze seems to be to try and identify what that man has done for us during his reign. (Given his style - reign is exactly the right word). Already, I have seen a nice comment on his effect upon our identity where I think his collected efforts were a disaster.

I am going to cheat slightly. Well, seems appropriate given the individual we are discussing. I regret that he has wasted ten years. He came into power with a truly overwhelming majority and surging support for his NewLabour ideas. After the dying years of the Tory long innings there was much to correct and much scope for new initiatives. Yet, looking at what has actually happened it is hard to see where he has achieved anything. The indication of what was to come should have been apparent with the saga of the Millennium Dome where they took over the Hesseltine project when the government changed. The opening night was a defining moment in my attitude to the new boys in town. Guests stranded far away, Old Langs Syne with the Queen forced into an up market Knees Up Mother Brown routine, dodgy fireworks - all the clues were there.

There has been no lack of new clothes for the Emperor. But, time and again, once the initial euphoria has faded we see that there is nothing underneath the spin and, sometimes, downright lies of the Mandelsons and Campbells. When detected in these twists and untruths, their corrective measures also failed. The new legislation seems to be applied in something like an Elastoplast wound dressing manner. So, marks out of 10? Twist my arm? Maybe two.

And so, Farewell

I have often said I'd like to see the back of Cherie Blair nee Booth. When it came, this image is NOT what I had wished for.

As she fades away into her considerable property assets (funded dubiously) interspersed with well paid lecture/freebie gathering tours, it is clear that either the Cameron cutie or the Brown babe will have to watch their p's and q's lest they be compared with dear departed Cherie The Wide Mouth Frog.


It is all to easy to blame MI5 for what seemed to be a slack approach in targetting some and missing others. They do not have limitless resources - they have been forced to advertise for trainee spooks - and doubtless felt they had a better developed case against those who were weighed off yesterday.

This blogger says it well. All about priorities. My own 2P worth? Had they chosen the eventual 7/7 London transport bombers and prevented those at the cost of the other lot getting into Brent Cross Shopping Centre - there would have been the same volume of comment as we have now.

NHS had 24 hours to live

Well, seems that is what B.Liar said when he came to power. If it were moribund then, it must have the survivor assets of Jack Bauer. The Guest Blog sets out to explore ways that what we have left may be improved.

First off, there needs to be realisation that money allocated to Health goes into a bottomless pit. Demand is created for, say, IVF for women of 50. That is achieved and the women of 55 start knocking on doors for their chance. Then along come the 60 year olds. Medicine can possibly do everything given enough funds but at the moment we do not seem to have any machinery for evualating just what should be done. We have NICE messing around ruling on drugs but nothing seems to happen on the really major, broad brush, questions. It has to be taken on board that left to it's own demands, the NHS will swallow every penny abstracted from us by way of taxes. Every day people are given the devestating news that they have the big C and that nothing can be done to prevent their death in x months or weeks. They accept that and most go away to settle their affairs and look for a dignified and pain-free exit. The same 'telling it like it is' needs to be adopted across all illnesses and medical demands. Childless at 50? Well, sorry. The NHS will do nothing.

Having done something to limit the financial demands, there needs to be better finalcial planning. Big industry manages to get it's budgets right. We do not read that XXY Inc has run out of money just two thirds of the way through the year and is having to stop functioning because there is no money. Cars are not made and set aside because there is no money to buy wheels and tyres. Yet, regularly we read of NHS Trusts having to suspend operations as the money has gone, buildings are falling apart for lack of funds or that doctors and consultants are being laid off as they cannot be paid. This must cease. Having a firm grip on what is to be done is a prime essential to budgetting so the two things I reckon we need are conjoined.

Will we get it? I doubt it. Politicians are driven bythe need to get re-elected. The public will want Auntie Ruth aged 60 to become, overnight, Mummy Ruth with the threat of, at least, twins. Telling her she has left it too late will not go down well with the tabloid press who will highlight the political fallout. And so it goes on.

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How can we improve the NHS? Good question.

Ouch - that's gotta hurt

I am finally, as an old man, getting used to the TV adverts showing a pack of cotton and blue ink. I can accept that if they work as illustrated, they must impart real feelings of security.

The concept of security has just been extended. Remember the old sergeant in Hill Street 'Just be careful out there'

Monday, 30 April 2007

Singing poodle

My dog sometimes 'sings' along with me if I am in turn doing a Willie Nelson duet.

Nice to see that poodle B.Liar has the same ability.

Security cock-up - Yes or No?

There will doubtless be heated calls for an Inquiry as to how it was that our MI5 people missed the plotters of the 7/7 transport bombings in London. I found this (below) in the ether that surounds us. Not my words but I agree the sentiment. As a witness in the Saville Inquiry regarding Bloody Sunday, I well know just what riches these produce for the legal profession and how little new material they disclose.

Via ChickenYoghurt, there's a petition to sign if you think it'll do any good. Basically, it goes like this:
We, the undersigned, call on the government to initiate another vastly expensive whitewash which will waste enormous amounts of public money whilst exonerating the current government and security services of any wrongdoing whatsoever. It may or may not cost less than the £500 million, or whatever the f**k it is, that the massively fruitless (and yet-to-report) Bloody Sunday enquiry has paid to lawyers so far but I simply cannnot imagine a better way to spend the cash. Certainly, giving it to the Security Services and thus allowing them more resources to ensure that another 7/7 never happens is definitely not the best use of that money. Really.

Can you tell that I'm a wee bit sceptical?

Oily Limpics

The more I hear about our 2012 Olympics, the less I like it. There is a story rolling about that £1 billion of costs was conveniently 'lost' in the preliminary calculations and now we have the revelation as to how the security will be handled.

I well remember the pictures of the Olympics in Germany when the terrorists seized the Israeli athletes and the bungled attempt at rescuing them led to many deaths of the hostages. The security situation is surely much more tense than back then so it is vital we have the best. Choosing a contractor on the basis of their sponsorship seems a sad way of getting the best. It makes a selection from a limited pool.

And this is before the drugs sagas start .........

Wise words

Have to start off with a quote.

Bear with me. Blood, sweat, and tears When someone truly cares about us, we almost automatically start to care about them. All the great leaders of the past have known this. Napoleon talked personally with his soldiers and handed out medals to show them that he cared about their hurts and valued their bravery.They responded by fighting for him until the last. Winston Churchill walked in the bombed ruins of London and spoke the words the defiant people would have spoken if they’d had his eloquence. He didn’t talk about abstractions, like overall war plans or strategic objectives. He spoke about real things: blood, sweat and tears. He embodied the values the nation was fighting for. He gave meaning to people’s efforts to stay alive and fight back. Hand people instructions and they’ll do no more than you tell them to—and maybe not even that. Give them rules and they’ll find ways around them. Talk about financial ratios, profitability, and return on investment, and their eyes will glaze over. But give people something to believe in—a sense of meaning and purpose in what they do— and show them that they matter, and they’ll produce efforts and results you wouldn’t have imagined possible.

One of the comments most often made about B.Liar is his absence from the hospital wards where victims of his ego-centered war are held. He will fly off to Iraq whenever a photo-opportunity is needed. He has caused his government to issue much new legislation - i.e. instructions. He declaims how wonderful his works are in the worlds of finance - i.e. financial ratios etc. He creates Rules which are swiftly circumvented.

What he does not do is give people in the wider community something to believe in, meaning and purpose. That lack certainly has great effect in the military where increasing numbers say "Enough - I'm off". I am sure his dismal performance in real terms is down to that lack of meaning.

New lamps for old

As should be clear by now, I am not a woman. Neither am I Muslim. I did spend some considerable time in the Middle East and in an Asian country where the majority of people were Muslims.

So, on many counts, I seem unqualified to comment on what is reported as a rising trend in, at least, France. However, as a well-travelled, red-blooded heterosexual, I do have views on virginity. Its purpose, significance and place in a loving relationship. I never attached a great deal of thought or importance to the existence or otherwise of a small piece of skin. So much for the practical side of the matter. I do admit that my attitude towards those who worried about virginity was to regard it in the same way as one might consider employing a chauffeur. Would you want one who had never driven?

We live in a world where very relaxed moral values exist alongside almost pre-civilisation attitudes. Possibly none more so than where sex is involved. If the parties involved feel that falsely obtained 'evidence' of chastity is significant, I have no objection to their going down that route. Especially as it seems that the earth may be moving for some.

Insight - How Things Work

So, OK, how does the arrow of your mouse work? What makes it move?

I know now. This will keep me enthralled for th rest of the day, I'm sure.

Right says Fred

There are many things about America that get my approval. Big deal I hear you say, Bush can sleep soundly tonight. This is a guy who regularly sets out his feelings on racial differences. He seems to do it without NAACP or KKK forming up on his lawn. His latest blog is another example. Here in UK, this sort of thing would have him ASBO'd within hours. I understand that he has a readership and is not just some evil voice sounding off where he cannot be heard. This in a country that many of us here see as dominated by pc in all it's forms.

Is it 'cos I is fat?

Patsy Hewitt, our purported Health Minister, has encouraged NHS Trusts who decline to treat fatties on grounds of their size or smokers because of their disgusting habit. Well, fine. She has been involved in wrong decision on other things. More than once. Almost several times in fact. I'm sure you get the picture.

However, it seems strange that we will not allow people to prematurely terminate their own lives but condemn others to death because they have a problem outside their control. I might see something in the ruling if there were a requirement to aggressively treat the addiction or whatever causes obesity or smoking. Participation in this treatment would be compulsory for those who need other treatments where overweight or smoking is a contra-indication.

I should declare an interest. "My name is John and I am a fatty". 12 Steps will not cure an atheist.

Sunday, 29 April 2007

Why is he so attractive?

Sven-Goran Ericsson claims he cannot see why his private life attracted so much interest.

May I give him a clue? Just rate in degrees of attraction to the opposite sex the man himself and the three women with whom we know he played hunt the sausage.


And this is the reaction of the PM who was going to be tough on crime and tough on the causes of crime.

There seems to be no area where the idiot has not reversed his actions and claims to improve things.

Truly, "In the name of God - go!"

Rich List

There is an uncanny fascination for me in reading The Rich List. Cannot really sort out why; it is so obvious that I will never figure even on the final rung. Not envy or jealousy. Only sometimes does it drive me off to thinking what I would do with some massive sum.

There was one year I really enjoyed it. Linked in was the story about a mega mega rich man who heard someone boasting about being worth £5 million. "Toss you for it" he said. I wish I could do that.

Stand Up, speak up. Shut up. Sit down

Having been a soldier I know the difference that often exists between what one is told and what one knows to be true and correct. So, it is good to hear the opinion of a soldier turned politician. Not that he says much new; the blogs from Iraq are very current. We even had a private soldier speaking out in the media saying what a waste it all was. The author of this analysis is the man sacked by Dopey Dave Cameron. Reading this has just about wiped out any support I may have had for Cameron.

Saturday, 28 April 2007

School shootings

Most of us here in UK, I suspect, have little real understanding of the nature and extent of school shootings in America. We had our own experiences and swift action resulted. And yes, I am aware that many people condemned the swiftness at a time when raw emotions existed and the handgun ban seems in time to have become farcical when illegal guns seem universally available in big cities.

Despite the problem presented in a review of US shootings, I sense that the strength of weapon holding enshrined in the US Constitution will not be disrupted by the latest incident. Look carefully at the factors associated with the shooters. They also seem alien to us with the medication factor they have.

I have to say that the thing which really will stick in my memory is the suggestion that rifles be available in school corridors in cases such as we have fire extinguishers. Strong situations require strong measures indeed. What would our Health & Safety people say about that?

Friday, 27 April 2007

Is it fair?

A very fine actress. Taxi and Silence of the lambs were much better for her presence. Now, someone has dug up a video of Jodie Foster singing.

Is it fair that so much talent is present in one body?

Switch off brain. Open mouth. Insert foot.

That fool B.Liar has made yet another stupid and, I suspect, lying statement. He was speaking in the context of Prince Harry yes or no going to Iraq. The addled fool said he would be delighted for his children to go to Iraq. Delighted. I repeat 'delighted'

Proud is a word I would accept. Contented - maybe. Of course, he is betting on a winner. None of his children are ever likely to get nearer a war than an all-freeby holiday in the Caribbean. I might just as well say I'd be delighted if my sister were to become a transvestite prostitute. I have no sister so the acceptance is devious and deceitful. But then, what else to expect from that person.

Save a place for me

Sounds like something that would certainly ease the problem of topics for discussion with one’s dinner party neighbour. The item seems to concentrate on female guests

“At each setting there's a large ceramic plate that rests on a cloth runner embroidered with the woman's name and lavishly decorated with symbols of her life and achievements. The plates are painted with vaginal forms, some rising up in high relief, and are also customized with symbolic attributes of the women they honor. The gleaming white-ceramic tile floor beneath the table bears the names of another 999 women painted in gold”
The artist claims she got her inspiration from
“Along each side are 13 place settings, a reference to Christ and his 12 disciples at the Last Supper. Chicago said she wanted to reinterpret "that all-male event from the point of view of those who had traditionally been expected to prepare the food, then silently disappear from the picture."

I suppose we should be grateful that she went the female route and we did not end up with place settings of penis images. The way in which the male organs are displayed would have made it difficult to set out the plates. I did once have a male friend who claimed that he preferred women’s bodies because their sexual arrangements were so much neater. I know what he means but I do not think that such things should be considered part of the enjoyment of a good meal.

Thursday, 26 April 2007


Any trouble from this lady and this photograph is going straight to her workmates.
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Ewe won't believe this

I cannot take this as gospel truth.

Funny though.

Will he go or will he stay?

The recent rise of service deaths in the British area of Iraq, including one where one of our main battle tanks was crippled, has led to questions as to whether Prince Harry should deploy there with his regiment sometime next month.

He has made his own wishes clear. He wants to go and has said so forcibly. What one would expect from a lad fresh out of Sandhurst and as a member of a crack unit. There are stories that the enemy has already circulated his photograph and intend to make him a prime target. They would wish to kill him but his being taken as a hostage is also on the cards. Either would be a serious victory for the group that achieves their aim.

It is not just that he will be working on his own unaccompanied out of the streets. He will have other tank crews with him and under his command. Their very proximity to a Royal target will heighten the already considerable dangers they face every time they drive out of their permanent base. If he is wounded or his vehicle is put out of action, other troops will have to be sent to recover him or his transport and the increased danger will attach to them. Quite obviously, he will be a liability.

He is reported to be making moves to influence the decision makers. I'd suggest this is an abuse of his position as a very new and junior officer; the ordinary Rupert would be stamped upon if they tried the tactic he is said to be using. What he needs is to remember the family's concept of Duty. He is required to do what is best for the country - regardless of what he would like to do. His duty is to be available to fulfill his royal destiny and availability as third in line for the crown. Observation of this duty would preclude his personal wishes. I suppose the example that first comes to mind was his aunt Margaret's decision to break up her romance with Group Captain Townsend. I would not think less of him.

Edited to add - Coments continue to get posted everywhere.

I see the benefit of that

Getting older is supposed to have benefits. The acquisition of intelligence is supposed to come from age. Many cultures respect aged persons.

What seems to happen is that the advances of science allow the old to appear clever. Where I might have had to spend much time reading a collection of newspapers, I can now check out news on the Internet. My knowledge of current events, new ideas, Agent Provacateur underwear - all simplified.
There are even advances which leap ahead. I was concerned that I was in Argos but could not read the item reference as it was too small. Dah Daa - problem solved.
Hey - I'm joking right.

Wednesday, 25 April 2007

World poverty deaths

We had the joke re Bono clicking his fingers and saying "Everytime I click my fingers, a child dies" to be answered by a heckler who said "Well, bloody stop doing it then"

However, here is something that illustrates the situation without the chance for any heckling. I do not know what we are going to do. We pour resources and money into the area and it just seems to go to waste. Or, does it go to Mercedes showrooms?


There is much discussion on the way we treat drug production in Afghanistan. My own dealings with drug abusers suggests to me that whatever is decided as a control method, it will not be easy. So difficult I do not see it working.

In that context, this is an interesting report and commentary.

Causes of crime - what?

As a very junior (i.e. young) investigator I would often find a situation where the only conclusion would be that it was a wonder that the crime had not been perpetrated earlier and more frequently. There was no idea of crime prevention. A few window bars. More than one lock on a door or contained. That was about it.

I served long enough to see this situation reversed. We organised crime prevention courses to train officers how to undertake surveys and forestall easy pickings. Technological advances were taken into our armoury. Closed circuit TV was a back-up to the window bars. Alarm systems became very sophisticated; way beyond a ringing bell that was ignored by most. The new concentration on preventing crime by use of brain power rather than application of the wooden poultice, worked.

Then came the mania for measuring work done and results achieved. Officers were spending more and more time in their stations with paperwork and keyboards. Crime prevention fell off. Guess the result of that.

NuLabour's achievements

I have to be careful when I set out to establish exactly what it might be that B.Liar has brought to this country. My tablets meant to counter high blood pressure can only do so much.

I've found an analysis that saves me the effort. Draws the John Major government in but I can deal with that.

Tuesday, 24 April 2007

Ninja Mob

Here is another one of those Japanese street gatherings similiar to the one I did a couple of days back

Be great to start something like this is, say, the morning rush hour at a main line London station.

No sooner said than done

Another string to his bow

As if he was not doing enough to supplement his obscene pension, B.Liar is putting himself about as a singer.

I'm an expert. Get me in there.

It must be hard to give up the trappings of high political life one receives as a Prime Minister. I suppose it is because it is so hard that few actually step down.

There is work with this, that and the other foundation. Lecture tours. Plastic chicken dinners where the star struck hoi pollieu can rub shoulders with Mr Big.

So, I see that B.Liar is setting himself up with another few-hours-a-week appointment. That will be nice to have on his c.v.

Veiled threats

We had much consternation, learned debate, ignorant ranting and Islamophobia after Jack Straw commented that women visiting his parliamentary office should drop the veil. This was followed by the female teacher who refused to reveal anything more exotic than her eyes. I thought it had all died down after the point was made by Muslims themselves that the covering-up was not a
religious requirement.

So, if there were any winning to be achieved, it looked as if the common sense party had won. Not so; the judicial masters have spoken and have taken a view. I see it as a cave in.

What a good looking woman my illustration is. Must be in her genes?


Just amazing what some people will do to get service in busy restaurants

One piece at a time

Seems that a guy decided to steal bits of a boat from his employers - Sunseeker. I was quite excited by this as the blogger asks who was it that wrote a song about this sort of bit by bit thieving to build a car. I knew it was Johnny Cash. Trouble is that someone else had already answered that question.

I might get a mention if I query the value of the bits stolen. Sunseeker is one of the most expensive marques one can buy; new models go for £1M upwards. Seems that they do make cheepo versions though.


There are times when I find the American sense of history just a little bit too strong.

Monday, 23 April 2007

Iran diary

Iran is not really a land of iPod thieving zealots that make our sailors cry. Or so it seems from this diary of a stay there by a Daily Mail columist. Longish but, to me, an insight into a land where our mistaken perceptions may well cause us yet further problems. If nothing else, we should observe that old adage "Know thy enemy"

John is Searching

Never mind why it is here.

My blog.

My rules.

Home town boys

I have not wanted to get into the VT shootings. We here in the UK have very little idea of the place that guns play in the life of the average American so we are unable to make a lot of sense of the situation.

However, today I came across this. The audio track does not match the visuals all that well but it seems to attempt to examine things from the US perspective. Well, as I see it anyway. Go looky and make your own mind up - maybe.

It's April 23rd

Cry God For Harry, England and Saint George

Yes, it's the day every pc-****wit, eu-wanker and member of the Scottish Raj would rather we all forgot. The day we English should be celebrating our own identity. So with apologies to my less blessed readers, today will be dedicated to all things English.

This royal throne of kings, this sceptr'd isle
This earth of majesty, this seat of Mars
This other Eden, demi-paradise
This fortress built by Nature for herself
Against infection and the hand of war,
This happy breed of men, this little world,
This precious stone set in a silver sea,
Which serves it in the office of a wall,
Or as a moat defensive to a house,
Against the envy of less happier lands;
This blessed plot, this earth, this realm, this England

Normal touchy-feely, all-inclusive, diversity-sensitive programming will resume on the morrow.

Ready for something serious?

OK. Coffee. Do Not Disturb notice posted. Fags if you still abuse them.


Secret no more

Given the sort of attitude I think I reveal here, it may seem strange that I find the Post Secrets site so interesting.

Every so often, I come across something that hits home on me. In this week's posting of new cards, there are two that made me stop and think. My collection of blank spots in the brain is today over the Mythology I Once Knew lobe but I recollect something about a courtier who was so het up that he whispered a secret down a hole in the ground** That is how it got out that his master had asses' ears. I can understand the relief afforded by sending off the cards we see here.

** I was annoyed that something I had laboured at all those very many years ago had gone into hiding. Thanks to the wonders of Google, I found this listing of people who had gained knowledge the keeping secret of which they found bothersome. No exact match but I'll settle for one or other of these. Side note is that the idea of 'hole in the ground' as a depository of secrets is universal across so many cultures.

Recycle or restock?

I do not follow every twist and turn on the environmental debate. Global warming - cyclic or our fault? Carbon footprints, carbon trading. Even with next to zero interest, the buzz words have got me.

So, with that background, I was surprised to find myself agreeing with the points made by a Guardian columnist. The choice of paper alone would normally scare me a mile. However, as a stockist of what she describes as redundant "stuff" (boy's toys within my family circle), I see what she means.

Might even give it a go. Hows about you dear Reader?

Pucker up

Seems that these are the likely costumes that young ladies will be wearing in the immediate future.

Nice. Not too drastic. No need for size zero to get them on.

Should have the builders whistling like a bird cage full of finches.

Sunday, 22 April 2007

Part-time staff

So, it seems that our police spend a mere14% of their duty periods on patrol and that at any given time only one in 58 is actually out where they are likely to encounter criminals. Nurses get a little more exposure to their customers where they spend 40% of their shifts alongside a bed.

So, where are they during the periods they are not filling their primary role? In the case of police it is paperwork. Much of this is not related to solving crime or improving the quality of the cases against those in custody. Performance reviews seem to be the villains. So, it seems that what is preventing them doing a better job is the time spent telling us how much better they are doing than before Bliar gave attention to being tough on crime and tough on the causes of crime.

In the case of the nurses, it seems that the 'lost' time is spent in rectifying the faults of others or what might be considered as administration. I remember the days when there were Matrons. Fierce old biddies who ensured that everything ran like clockwork robots. They went on replacement by some management theory vocabulary wonks but were re-instated. Seems they were de-fanged before being brought back. The ways detailed in the nurses employment report would never have been tolerated. The reports one reads when ward cleanliness is discussed reveal filth and shoddy workmanship that would never had existed in days of yore.

So, what price progress?

Waiting for the bang

Way back in my sorta-policeman days, I formed the theory that there is never any such thing as an accident. My work confirmed that what might be described as accidental always had some factor which, had it been dealt with, would have prevented the event.

So, it seems that the killer at Virginia Tech. was a weirdo. He had tendencies and traits that should have set alarm bells ringing. His having been ruled as 'odd' should have prevented him from legally acquiring weapons and ammunition. But they did not.

So - no accident. Looks like there might be a large dent in the 2007 profits of the company carrying the Tech's liability insurance.

Saturday, 21 April 2007

Got any spare change?

In keeping with my curmudgeonly image, I do not give money to beggars. I have been known to find, buy and donate a can of dog meat for the poor animal they often have with them. I subscribe to the prejudice that claims much of the money is spent on drugs and alcohol. I do not condemn them for these habits but I will not encourage them. Buskers who actually do something when looking for money are a different breed to me and they get whatever I have as small change.

So, with this background, I welcome the new initiative regarding donations to beggars. Let us hope the claimed benefits are achieved and the idea spreads.

Rough Justice

This latest comment on the Iran situation (No - not our damned Naval saga this time) reveals the mind set of those in that Islamic country. My skin prickles the most at the last sentence in this essay.

Friday, 20 April 2007

This just HAS to be here

What more comment is needed?

Isn't science wonderful

I find myself less than impressed by what is claimed as advances in techology. I suppose I should be reconciled by now to the fact that I will never ever never be an IT-capable great-grandad. With the right label on the index icons (nowadays in BIG type), I can just about get around things or even hack things but understanding what I am doing is well beyond me.

I have used Thunderbird as mu email thingy for about seven or eight years. If that makes me seem an early adopter or whatever the geek word is, don't think that. I have a son who can do all the necessary malarkey and he put me onto it. I liked it and it stayed with me. Never let me down. Never failed to reappear from where I put it away at night when tidying up my toy box. I even begain to think I knew something about things and I recommended it to folks.

Yesterday, I read that there was a new version - 2.0. Not a beta as I have been warned to avoid these like the devils spawn. Full of trust at seven or eight years of loving partnership, I downloaded it. Smooth as silk. Lovely. Tried out the new features. Neat; more for the hard-pressed businessman with '000s of mails per day but I used to wear a suit so I kept it. Not much choice really once it had installed itself. The display after installation was used and then put away - closed.

I opened it up this morning to find that Dr Hyde had turned into Mr Jekyl. It first refused to come when called by my hot key. Then it got half-way through a message and killed itself. Little note about telling Big Momma about the fault. Got it back and it got the overnight stuff from the Wells Fargo of wherever. Quick. Breathing of Aged Parent resumed. Minimised it and went on to read my bloglines. Up flashed a 'You've got mail' sticky. Um - nice. Tells who from and the first line. I clicked to open it. Flash. Bang. Weird sound effect. Crash Message to Momma. And so it went on.

But then I am not as daft as I used to be. I sought out an old version and downloaded that. So. I'm not the hep cat April 2007 user of Thunderbird v2.0. Thank goodness for that say I.

This message was brought to you by our sponsors so that you might save yourself some aggro. You will thank me.

Follow-up. Tagging the old idiots

Seems I'm not the only one who noticed that the control freaks had me targetted. Thankfully, Baldermort, not with a Glock.

Thursday, 19 April 2007

Weather report

After a week of lovely sunny weather we woke up this morning to this sort of thing.

Global warming - bring it on

Bless Google

Someone asked me how one man could kill so many people with just two handguns.

Answer - simple. Ask Google and it comes to the rescue.

I'm over here

Seems that the Scots Government is worried about the power of us old people. It wants to track us as we gather together to plot some new anti-social tactic.

I already have a tag on my MediLert necklace that says "Hi. My name is John. If found lost or confused, please ring Norma on 01361 882***" I did it as a joke (I have a T-shirt with the same message) but it looks as if I am ahead of the cutting edge of innovation.

I suppose I'll go for tracking if they throw a sat nav and speed camera warning programme in with it for free. I might just be naughty and stick it on the dog so they can track her.

Street Theatre

I came across this the other day. It is a synchronised street performance somewhere in Japan. The word appears somewhere and a large crowd gathers and goes through the routine. Seems the masks are from characters in the comic magazines that Japanese love. The dance reenact passages from these comics.

Yes - interesting. And no more than that. But, see the ending. All of a sudden the game is brought to an end and the participants melt away. Why? Just two police may be the answer. I do not think that a group of London teenagers would have shown the same reaction. Not sure whether I prefer that thought or the way the kids reacted to their police force.

Thanks here to Amy who emailed this extra bit of information. Strengely, similar point of interest to mine. Spooky.

Wednesday, 18 April 2007

Mystery waves

Don't know who she is, the band, the station. Nothing.

Just looking at blogs and it had a 'click here' thing. Evere obedient, I did just that. Quite like it.

A host of golden rap rap

Turn the speakers down and then see what this does for you.

I suppose if it gets even one person to go look for the original work, this would be worth while. How long before we get Land of Hope and Glory the same way?

Time marches on

Some of you (one of you two) may remember the fuss that was created when the Y2K scare was unleashed. Whole countries would fall off the edge of the civilised world as computers turned the page and found the next page was blank. All because some programmer in 1896 or whatever was unable to contemplate a year 2000. As I remember it, nothing much at all happened except that some shady programmers made shed loads of money with claims of Eureka. I solved the problem by having my cheapest IT bloke come in just about midnight and manually check all the clocks. He had to reset one only.

However, the problem of clocks and IT time is amusingly (for us) dealt with here in the report of a student detected by his Miss Marples look-alike principal. To me, having been a sort of policeman, the best part of the story was in her judgement of his claims of innocence. Right on Maam.

Tuesday, 17 April 2007

Rush Hour Blues

Some of the people I have heard playing in Underground stations and other public places have great talent. Has to be great if I am to recognise it. I look at the coin gathering cap and do not see a lot of money. Is this because my fellow travellers are unsympathetic or just in too much of a rush? Is the income worth the effort? Why is someone who can trot out a mean tune not in employment? I would think any one of them could do better playing in a pub that has a licence.

So, this experiment interested me. Hasn't added a whole lot to my questions but caused me to wonder even deeper.

Run for cover now

We are about to be swamped by a veritable tsunami of "learned comment and opinion" on the university killings in America. The Pro and Anti gun lobbies will run white hot. Switzerland's high level of gun availability but low gun crime will be teased out once more.

So, it was good to find a comment that is short and sweet and cuts to the heart of the problem. In fact, I think it is so good that for me it says all that needs to be said. Here, In MY World, no more will be written about the deaths.

Monday, 16 April 2007

One of the greats

Don McCullin had great fame during the Vietnam War as a war photographer. His work shone out even beyond the many other photographers in his line of work. The stresses and strains meant that he cut short his work and, for a while, specialised in landscape images. He has just been out to Darfur of Oxfam and some of his exposures are published today. He has been to Africa before.

He has retained his craft. Given the excellent range of tones in the images displayed, he still uses the 'old' 35mm cameras and has eschewed digitals.

Whither Iraq?

Long story but well worth your time. After all - what else have you to do?

Image hosting by Photobucket


I like it because it says many of the things that I believe have been overlooked

You would not believe it

One of our Ministers has been spouting off in America about the War On Terror. In the heartland of the operation, he rubbished the idea. He attributed his belief to some high powered thinking on the part of the enemy. One would have thought that his father might have explained that the heart most often rules the brain in extremists and the thought processes he describes were never present in the minds of AQ, Taliban, Sunni, Shiite or those myriad other enemies we have created since 9/11.

What he now claims as Government attitude seems a perfect example of 20::20 hindsight. There were many back in, what, 2001 who advised more subtle approaches than Shock and Awe.

I despair.

Sunday, 15 April 2007

Mark Steyn

Don't know whether you two readers of this blog have already found him but, if not, let me treat you to the man.

This is about a year old. Gives the opportunity to check out his forecasting. I get a lot of enjoyment from him so I hope you can enjoy it.

Ashes 2 Ashes

A2A is the follow-on for Life on Mars. Set later and with the lads moved from Manchester to London. Given that the attitude of Met CID that Manchester is some 3rd World, this should be great for the script writers where they are doing the one-liners.

This teaser trailer had me digging into the grey matter any number of times.

A reporter

I think we sometimes forget that Jon Snow used to be a very competent war correspondent.

Good to see him back to his roots

Saturday, 14 April 2007

Sexed up

I suppose one might say that if one waits long enough, the truth will out. Seems the debate about who sexed up the Iraq threat assessment will have to reopen. Given the liars we have as government, it was always on the cards that their work would be revealed. They cannot even get that right.

Birds of a feather

If this report has any bottom to it, then quite clearly a serious transgression took place following the ambush. These were American marines and if we are to trained to react swiftly to enemy actions. Here, even giving them as much leeway as one can, they seem to have mixed innocent civilians in with terrorists, The subsequent removal of the group from active operations seems to support the contention that they did wrong.

We here in Britain have seen the same sort of thing from our troops so it ill behoves us to tut tut at what seems to have happened here. What does occur to me is that there has to be something missing from the training modules which examines frustration. lessening of support for the war and the soldiers' feelings that the general public is unappreciative of their sacrifices. Eve of battle speeches on discipline are easily made. They sound impressive but do not deal with the boredom of routine patrols once the adrenaline has worn off.

That is where the real challenge of soldiering comes to play.

Life Plans

There are a lot of what I call modern day words and concepts in this article but, when I translate these to the more direct words I understand from my past, they do make a lot of sense and reflect ideas I tried to follow in the days when I was a wage slave. Especially so in the last suggestion "Treat Yourself Kindly"

Bad News Day

So, young Wills has split with his long term squeeze Kate. He says he feels that he is too young for marriage. Considering they have lived under the same roof for some considerable period of time, it looks to be a bit late for this change of heart. I hope the lad is not at the head of any Order of Chivalry. For my money and speaking as a former member of the brutal and licentious soldiery, it was to be expected once he had savoured the delights of the Wham, bam, thank you mam lifestyle.

I suppose one might say that this outcome was in his genes anyway. Chazzer took the opportunity of the respect accorded to Royals and was involved in many back-door smuggling romances with the luscious ladies of that time. I always hoped he would have married Susan George who would have made all royal events much more watchable. So, better now than later and another re-run of the Chas and Di story.

More important to me is this damned Iran caper. The Minister is due to make a statement on Monday. Doubtless, he will repeat all the claptrap about where who was. I've wondered all along on the frontier position. Given the hatred that existed between Iran and Iraq at the time of their war, I could not see that there was an agreed frontier. Looks as if I might have tripped over something. If there is really a doubt, it puts our case on very shaky ground.

Our Lads - God Bless 'Em

Watch this.
The lads deserve understanding and support.

Friday, 13 April 2007

Life on Mars

Gene Hunt: I think you've forgotten who you're talking to.
Sam Tyler: An overweight, over-the-hill, nicotine-stained, borderline-alcoholic homophobe with a superiority complex and an unhealthy obsession with male bonding?
Gene Hunt: You make that sound like a bad thing.

That's a keynote quote from the police series that has, sadly, just finished. It set a modern day approach to policing to confront the CID of the early '70s. I knew many of these men. Hard working and dedicated. Loyal to their team. A culture of hard drinking - often alongside the very arch criminals that were their quarry. Unfortunately, their dedication towards getting results in the face of very devious (and often invented) defence barristers was what led to their downfall.

Thursday, 12 April 2007

Naval Power

Given what happened to us in the waters around Iran, my guest has some neat views and points on which to ponder.

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Naval power and how it might be deployed.