Saturday, December 30, 2006

Polly: new year, still the same stupid cunt

It seems that, counter to my hopes, Polly is continuing to write a load of fucking drivel. As we have seen, often in hideous detail, she has spent her year filling her twice weekly column at The Grauniad with shitty ideas, appallingly flawed logic and dodgy statistics (for which she is allegedly paid a paltry £140,000) and it would seem that she has no plans to give up, fuck off or die in the near future.

Ah well, obviously I wasn't a goodboy this year as Santa failed to deliver her head on a silver salver. Never mind, Polly herself has brought me a belated Christmas present: a column summing up all of her stupid fucking ideas in one succint package. What more could your humble Devil ask for, as he gears up for another year of ripping into the cognoscenti? So, shall we take a look at The Wisdom of Polly Toynbee?
New year resolutions may be wildly unrealistic, trying to be nicer, thinner, kinder, fitter, more generous, more patient and every other good thing.

Which is why I don't make New Year's resolutions. Well, other than promising to rip into you with even more bile and spite, you stupid woman.
But even if experience knows that resolutions are bound to be broken within days, if not hours, that's no reason not to contemplate doing better. So the same is true of politics.

Actually, Polly, you are absolutely correct; New Year's resolutions are exactly like politics: everyone talks about doing good things and improving the world, and then they absolutely fail to deliver. Yup, that sums up politicians pretty well, I'd say.

How about you making a resolution never to lay finger to keyboard ever again? No chance, I suppose...?
Next year will bring regime change at the top. In this low season for an administration that sometimes seems lost in a fog of government, drained of purpose by daily drudgery, here are some optimistic but not wildly unrealistic resolutions it might at least consider:

That's right, chaps: here comes the Polly Toynbee manifesto; the biggest pile of shit this side of Shit Mountain (probably somewhere in Wales).
  • Start with acts of contrition for past political sins committed by all parties.

What the fuck? What kind of shitty imposition is this? I would get deeply offended if someone apologised on my behalf for something that they felt I had done wrong; in the same way, I get deeply pissed off when Tony Blair apologises, on my behalf, for slavery. The idea of that grinning cunt, or any of his idiot apparatchiks, apologising for all political mistakes over the course of... well... forever would piss everyone off no end. Especially since NuLabour's record is, let's face it, hardly "whiter than white".

And what is this silly cow's prescription of how this should be done? Well, with it coming from Polly, you might be expecting some piece of illiberal bollocks which would vastly increase the politicians' power and decrease their accountability. And you would not be disappointed...
Bring in state financing of parties, with a strict cap on all spending over the electoral cycle and a ban on all money-raising except from fixed individual membership subscriptions. Give each voter the power to allocate their share of party funds by ticking a box on the ballot paper to stop a carve-up by the main parties, a good incentive to parties to get every vote out even in the safest seats.

Or, to put it another way, entrench the money supply of the main parties, making them less accountable to the voters and party members. Extract money from the population by blackmail and ensure absolutely that the parties no longer need to respond to their citizens or supporters.

For fuck's sake, Pol, state-funding hasn't made German (remember Helmut Kohl's resignation?) or French ("vote for the crook not the Nazi") politics any less corrupt, has it? You stupid bitch.
  • Encourage citizens to vote with a bonus off their council tax;

Oh that's a fucking great idea, that one, Pol. Gosh, where shall I start? First, as a punishment for not voting, tax payers will have their local services restricted: in fact, the more that you vote, the less money the council gets and the more restricted the services become.

Further, as a punishment for people not voting for the national politicians, the local council gets fucked over; the more people vote, the less money they get (not necessarily a bad thing, but you get the drift) and, of course, budgeting becomes problematic since the council cannot estimate how many people will vote.

And does this discount kick in in election years only? Or does it apply for every year? Will we see electoral fraud increase with financial incentives being offered? Has Polly thought about this for more than two minutes? God, she's a fucking idiot.
if they still won't turn out, make voting compulsory.

Which is, of course, the mark of a free society.

Politicians should understand that the reason that people are not voting is because they feel utterly unengaged with politics and politicians. This is important, a feedback loop for our MPs and their attendant parties. That the politicians ignore this fact is abysmal but only to be expected; and, the more that they ignore the apathy of voters, the less connected with the political process they feel.
Make it more enticing with the alternative vote, letting voters put their choices in 1, 2 ,3 order, choosing small parties closer to their views, while still using their second choice to keep out the party they most fear.

Ah, the Single Transferable Vote system, joyously open to fraud! Or is she proposing something similar to the Scottish party list system? It isn't entirely clear, is it? I'm sure that Polly is absolutely clear on what she wants, eh?
As it keeps the link between MP and constituency, it can be done for the next election while reforming the Lords.

What? Is this non-sequitur week in the Toynbee household? Oh, no, it's what she always does: slipping in some little nugget that doesn't follow from the previous comment, in the hope that no one will notice. God, she's a devious, underhanded piece of shit.
If any party fears losing out under the alternative vote, let it support full proportional representation.

And we'll end up with hung Parliaments all the time; not a situation I favour.
  • Prove British democracy is not in hock to press barons, despite the humiliating courting of these political thugs. Restore the laws limiting media ownership by any one magnate, abolished by Margaret Thatcher to let Rupert Murdoch acquire his empire, so that he now owns over 40% of the press plus ever more dominant Sky.

Well, let's go and visit Factchecking Pollyana for a little perspective on this.
Thanks to my goof over circulation and readership, we've seen the results for both; News International has 32% of circulation and 36% of readership. Note, by the way, that these figures are for most of the national dailies and Sundays. They exclude the local press.

Let's face it, Murdoch does control a lot of the media but he does not control it all. After all, I am sure that Murdoch would not tolerate Polly's fucking crappy ramblings.

Come to think of it, let Murdoch own all of it...
  • Fix the BBC's future with a legal guarantee of at least inflation-proof rises in the licence fee, free of political intervention in perpetuity.

Riiiight, Pol. And how, exactly, will that work? One of the key points of our Parliament is that no government can be irrevocably bound by the legislation of a previous government; this means that, as long as the BBC is funded by taxation, it can never be free of political interference.
(Tessa Jowell should resign in protest if she fails to secure the BBC steady state funding as a bare minimum.)

We should be so fucking lucky, frankly; the chances of that lying whore resigning are next to zero.
The licence fee is a bargain.

Well, it may be; but I wouldn't mind having the option of paying frankly. Why shouldn't I be able to chose whether or not I have to pay the fucking TV tax. Given the option, I would probably pay for the Beeb (probably) but I don't see why I should be forced to fund it through extortion.
  • Turn the Low Pay Commission into the Pay Commission, with a duty to recommend not just the minimum wage rate but to comment on the dysfunctions and dislocations caused by out-of-control pay at the top, now fracturing middle pay rates, inflating house prices, raising interest rates and harming all.

In the name of fuck, Polly; won't you sit down and think about what you write, just for five minutes? It is none of the government's fucking business what the directors of private fucking companies are paid. Fuck you, you stupid bitch. The fucking government bollocks up everything that it touches; do not, in the name of god, encourage them to further arse up—beyond the crap that is the tax system—private companies.
It should comment too on migration and its effect on pay rates.

You stupid fucking cow, it can comment as long as it likes on immigration; it can do fuck al about it. The majority of our mmigration policy is not controlled by our parliament, it is controlled by the European Union and whether Polly's quango thinks that EU immigrants (and let's face it, it is the Eastern European peoples that she is talking about) are depressing wages or not makes absolutely stuff all difference that this country can do absolutely fuck all and less than nothing about it.
  • Create a standing tax commission to expose who pays what and how fat cats squeeze through loopholes.

In that case, Pol, one assumes that you will denounce your big, Norse warrior and insist that The Gobblin' King start simplifying taxes immediately—thus closing the loopholes that are a consequence of the further complexities introduced by the Cyclopean bastard—and investigate a Flat Tax and general transparency in the system with all alacrity.

Ha! Fat chance of Polly making any such fucking connection.
Get tough on tax exiles: cut the time they can spend here tax-free while stashing their cash in Jersey or Monaco, losing the Treasury escalating sums as the UK turns tax haven itself.

That's right, and lose all of their skills and economic investment; nice one, Polly, you fucking chimp. Still, at least that will bring us nearer to the situation enjoyed by the Nordic countries of which you are so fond.
Bring a top tax band at £100,000 as an opportunity tax, earmarked to pay for new life chances for left-behind children.

Oh, go fuck yourself, Toynbee. Seriously, when has any tax ever been earmarked or "ring-fenced" and actually spent where intended? Never, absolutely never.

And what is this cock about "left-behind children"? Who is going to disburse this money; who is going to look after these children, Pol? Will it be your beloved state, the ones who ensure that if children in care are not being ritually buggered by those employed to look after them, they are, at least, failing their exams. When will you learn, you cretinous fucktard?
Make Every Child Matters a reality, with Sure Start a genuine universal guarantee that every child gets wrap-around help from well-qualified professionals to rescue all at risk. Labour's great idea, 10 years on, is still often only a half-fulfilled promise.

Great one; we al look forward to the new Never Never Land which will be the result of children raised in Polly's State Podding HutchesTM. Oh happy fucking day!
  • Cut crime at a stroke: let clinics prescribe enough heroin to addicts daily to stop them mugging, stealing and turning to prostitution to support a habit. Lives can be stabilised on regular heroin and that is also the best hope of getting chaotic addicts into rehab.

Ah, so I am to pay for the lifestyle choices of others, am I? Oh goody! And what about "addicts" of other drugs, Pol? Am I to be limited in the number of beers that I can have so that an alcoholic may be given their free booze? Can we not give nicotine addicts free cigarettes?

Legalise drugs and legalise brothels and let's have an end to this fucking about.
  • Begin again on foreign policy and, as Chirac departs, turn back to the EU.

Why, Polly? The EU costs us money, my dulcet darling; that money could be going to treat your beloved backward children, or treating people on the NHS, or any of your other bonnet-bees, my dear girl.
Europe is the world's best hope on climate change, the only grouping of nations with the power and intent to tackle it.

Really. So Europe is not a total fucking irrelevence, then? It isn't, as the EU's own numbers suggest, doomed to represent only 10% of the world's GDP then? It's inward-looking isolationist policies do not make it a pointess and tedious distraction for the big economies of the world then?
Make carbon trading work, invite in the rest of the world, and create and donate clean technologies to China and India.

Carbon trading will not work in any way; the system will not work and the reduction of carbon emissions will have precisely piss all effect on climate change.

It may have escaped your notice, Pol, for we all know that you are utterly blind to the good done by private companies, seeing only the limp efforts made by the state, but the best efforts towards escaping the burning of fossil fuels is being made by the US/Australia/Malaysia combine; in Britain, it is private companies which are leading the way in viable renewable technologies.

Why donate clean technologies to India and China (and most of these technologies are not "ours" to donate: they belong to the companies that developed them)? These countries are becoming richer by the day; why not sell them the technologies?
  • Give the climate change bill teeth. The public is ready to change its habits, but is waiting for strong leadership to say what everyone knows must be done.

Wow, Polly has defined some new English terms! Since when did "strong leadership" mean "blackmail people through legislation and financial penalties and the threat of incarceration"; because that's what you mean, isnt it, when you say "give the climate change bill teeth"?
  • Merger and acquisition mania is back in the City with renewed ferocity. Boasts about "inward investment" to Britain are often just a sign on the borders saying Britain for Sale, in ways that amaze other countries. Water, gas, airports and other essentials are up for grabs to asset-strippers who borrow to tear companies apart regardless of anything but vast profits for the fixers.

But... but... a little while ago, you thought that all this inward investment was a good thing, Pol.
Strange; on 13 October she thought it was good news:
the latest UN figures for inward investment show that last year the UK attracted more inward investment than any other country. It was twice as high as America's, growing by 183% last year. Meanwhile, the OECD ranks the UK as one of the most attractive places for foreign direct investment. The World Bank rates the UK top of the EU for best business conditions.

Here is more good news for the CBI to stick in its pipe
[emphasis added]

But no, Polly does not mind contradicting herself continually, as we have seen ad nauseam. Anyway, what can we do about all this trade asset-stripping?
Time to cap City kickbacks that are the only reason for many of the most destructive deals.

More government regulation of private companies: what a fucking surprise...
  • Grasp David Cameron's suggestion that, alongside measuring GDP, there should be a general wellbeing index. Hard cash is the tangible proof of a government's success, yet money is only the means to greater political ends. Without measuring who is spending it on what, crude GDP reveals little about the state of a nation. For decades there have been reliable measures of relative national happiness: countries with least inequality are the happiest. (Yes, the Nordics come top.)

Erm, not quite, Polly.
According to the World Bank's World Development Indicators 2002 (handily reproduced at the indispensable NationMaster website), the country where the richest quintile accounted for the lowest share of national income was Slovakia, with 31.4% (source). Their net happiness score (i.e. the proportion of people who say they are happy less the proportion who say they are unhappy) was a pretty miserable 4% -- 45th of 50 countries listed (source).

The next most equal country was Belarus, with the richest 20% getting 33.3% of national income. Their happiness score was actually -8%! The third most equal country, Hungary, had the richest quintile with 34.4% of national income and a happiness score of a slightly more respectable 46%.

Cameron never considered the full implications, but moving the index upwards would require a radical shift in priorities to alleviate the worst suffering of the depressed and mentally ill, of neglected children or old people needing kinder care.

Because government do it so fucking well, what we really ought to do is give the government more money to piss up the wall.
If he really wants governments to be judged by a felicific calculus, then letting a billionaire acquire another £1m would score virtually nil.

Yes. And. So. What? Are politicians about to have their own Felicific Targets to meet and if they don't then... Oh, fuck, absolutely fucking nothing happens, eh?
The loudest voices of the most powerful would no longer command the best of everything, since getting their way would do nothing for the wellbeing index.

That's right, they will simply use their money to buy things as they do now. Suits me. Polly will sit there banging on about her "felicific calculus" (do you mean "calculator" by the way, Pol, or are you seriously trying to find dx over dy?) while the rest of us get on with the demanding task of earning more money.
New year's resolutions are only good intentions.

How nice if they were a little more than that, eh?
But it is better to have them than not even to try.

Is it? From the point of view of confidence, is it good to promise something and then not deliver? If you promised me, Polly, that you were going to go home tonight and slit your wrists in a warm bath and then I saw you two days later, I would be fucking disappointed, frankly. And it would not fill me with confidence in your promises, Pol.

I really do not think that we need politicians making more promises that they have no intention of keeping; I don't think that that is going to do wonders for that voter turnout that you were so concerned about, will it, Pol?
After 10 years, Labour is too stuck in the daily grind of limited possibilities, forgetting how to imagine what might be if only it dared, if only it had the nerve. The above are not that difficult, and more could be added; implementing just a few would shift the can't-do gloom Labour has fallen into and change the grey spirit of the times.

After 10 years, NuLabour is about to implode under the weight of its own corruption and hypocrisy. NuLabour made promises 10 years ago which they have still not delivered on; what the fuck is the point of making yet more promises that they cannot keep.

Other than giving me a giggle as their failures become ever more apparent and Polly's dismay becomes ever more palpable.

I hate you, Polly, you useless sack of shit; I hate you because you continue to advocate the further extension of the power of the state, and these fuckers need no encouragement. Not only are you wrong-headed, stupid, inconsistent, ignorant and mendacious, but you are also the justification that our scummy government use to justify their continued erosion of our ancient rights and freedoms.

Still, I thought that I'd join in this particular conceit, and outline my new year's resolution suggestions for Polly. So, here we go, Pol; here's what I'd like to se you do in the new year, my love.
  • Stop writing this drivel.

  • Fuck off.

  • Die.

  • You cunt.

I know that there'll little hope of you keeping to these resolutions, Polly; so here's a new year's message for you, to welcome you into the new year.

Fuck you, Toynbee, you cunting baggage; fuck you right in the ear.

UPDATE: there's a very fine and rather more temperate fisking from Strange Stuff: well worth a read since he adddresses, in detail, some of the bits that I was a little sketchy on.

GNER: completely crazy

Your humble Devil has been riccocheting around the sights of London with the lovely Trixy, and is only now catching up on some of his notes from previously; please frgive the superanuated nature of a few of the following posts.

First, I have written about GNER before; it is, generally, a very good train operator, plying an efficient, friendly and—provided that you book a small while in advance—remarkably well-priced service up and down the east coast line between London and Scotland.

Furthermore, this route is almost unique in that it is not subsidised by the government, i.e. us, at all: indeed, GNER are paying a considerable amount of money to the government to run the route. So it was inevitable, I suppose, that this should happen.
The UK government has asked train firm GNER to surrender its £1.3bn-franchise on the main London to Edinburgh route.

GNER has faced financial woes since the London bombings, as passenger numbers dipped, power prices rose and Network Rail's compensation payments declined.

As a result it would not have been able to meet the terms of the franchise, which involved paying hundreds of millions of pounds to the government.

Brilliant, absolutely brilliant! Have you noticed that the government is attempting to tax the shit out of car drivers in an attempt to get more people onto public transport? And have you noticed that public transport is actually rather pricey?

The government attempts to keep regulating prices for transport routes; it hands out subsidised travel and free bus passes for the needy, etc. Has it ever occurred to the fuckers that one way of keeping prices down would be not to charge companies milions of fucking quid to run a damn route?

Further, contrast the treatment of GNER with that of Virgin (who run the West Coast route).
Meanwhile, the West Coast mainline is operated by Virgin who have just benefitted from a massive hidden subsidy in the recent line upgrade.
The top speed of the Pendolino was 110mph until the West Coast Main Line upgrade was completed.

The upgrade involved re-laying about 1,000 miles of track along the route in the last three years.

The first stage in the route improvement programme involved an upgrade of the section between London and Manchester, enabling trains to travel at up to 125mph.

The upgrade cost £7.9 billion. And, having spent that vast sum of money, the trains can now travel 15 miles per hour faster than they could before.

So, for every 1 mile per hour increase in speed, the taxpayer has shelled out £5.3 million quid. Anyone think that that is good value for money?

Quite apart from that massive hidden subsidy, Virgin's main subsidy has doubled over the life of its franchise.

So, Virgin Rail consumes massive amounts of money and gets to keep its franchise: GNER, which pays massive amounts of money to the government, loses its franchise. Does anyone see an inconsistancy here?
The government has invited new bidders for the route franchise.

Go on, Virgin: have a bite at the cherry! There's nothing like a good monopoly for increasing profits!
It is not yet clear whether GNER and its parent company, Sea Containers, will bid for the contract, though a spokesman for GNER suggested it was likely.

Sea Containers recently sought protection from its creditors under US bankruptcy law.

Whoops! But GNER is still solvent (just about). The government could renegotiate the contract so that, amongst other things, all of that rolling stock will not have to be repainted at vast cost (which will, inevitably, be passed onto us through higher prices and through our taxes in the form of subsidies).
"The government made it clear that rail operators that fall into financial difficulty should expect to surrender the franchise and not receive financial support," said Transport Secretary Douglas Alexander.

"To do otherwise could set the precedent that we are willing to bail out operators at extra cost to the taxpayer."

I'm sorry, Douglas, you fucking knobhead; does that apply to car manufacturers in marginal constituencies to, you hypocritical cunt. Does that also apply to Virgin Rail?

God, these people are such useless bastards, they really are.
Naturally, your humble Devil wouldn't like to influence any decision on the part of his readers, but Iain Dale is running a poll for the Right-Wing Blogger of the Year.

Your humble Devil was running in third position last time he looked...

UPDATE: Your humble Devil is, strangely, the third best right-wing blog as voted for by Iain's readers, and only one percentage point behind ConservativeHome. Thanks all, and a happy new year!
I don't really approve of state-sponsored killing, but I am afraid that I had only one reaction to the news that Saddam was hanged this morning.


NHS staff: are they really so hard done by?

It is rare for me to disagree with the venerable Doctor Crippen, but I really cannot let this one go.
I think the pay rates at the top end of the NHS are poor. Whether or not you agree with that, I do not think anyone will dispute that the pay rates at the bottom end are disgraceful.

How do you retain such a huge work force when you are paying them not much above the basic minimum wage, when many of them are living in poverty?

The current minimum wage is £5.35 per hour; for a standard 40 hour week, that translates to a salary of £11,128 per annum.

If we look at the Nurse Pay Scale here (and accompanying Pay Scale translator), we can see that a nurse starts on a salary somewhere between £12,177 and £15,107 (one must assume that this scale does not include London-weighting).

The good Doctor is correct that this is by no means a massive starting salary; however I started my first job on £12,500 and managed perfectly well in Edinburgh, a city which is, bar accommodation, not much cheaper to live in than London. In fact, my (admittedly limited) research has determined that, on average, a pint of ale in London is rather cheaper than one in Edinburgh.

However, as I have pointed out endlessly, what nurses do get, that I do not, is a very lovely final salary pension, underwritten by we generous taxpayers. They also get a security of tenure that we private sector workers do not get (although, as I am sure Crippen will point out, due to government incompetence this job security is less assured than once it was).

In other words, what nurses (and other public sector workers) get is jam tomorrow as opposed to jam today. I really don't see the problem with this.

It is far from ideal: I think that we should pay nurses more; after all, if we have a shortage of nurses—as interested parties continually claim—then surely the market would determine that we should pay more in order to encourage more people into the profession.

Fine, let's pay nurses more from the off, but here's the kicker: they forego the final salary pension. You can have your jam today but, since there are limited resources, there will be no jam tomorrow: that's the deal, OK?

This would free up a lot of money in the NHS; something like 80% of the increased NHS funding has been consumed by pay. A good deal of this has been consumed by the pensions: if you raise a nurse's pay by £1,000 a year, a great deal more than one grand then has to go into the final salary pension kitty.

So, all you nurses out there, what do you want: jam today or jam tomorrow?

Wednesday, December 27, 2006

Fundamental party funding; stick it up your fundament

Apologies for the lack of interesting posting; your humble Devil has been enjoying a slightly peripatetic Christmas break, and access to the interweb has been rather limited, as has my capacity for bile and vitriol ("'tis the season to be merry, you little bastard"). Also, I am extremely excited about my new, burgundy red, velvet suit which is, alas, currently at the tailors' but will soon be clothing my elegant (or skinny) body, oh yes I am.

However, after a very stressful couple of weeks—after which I have finally relocated, temporarily, at my father's place in Barnes—and a well-earned rest, your humble Devil felt a mild restlessness this morning: it was time to take to the blogsphere again, in search of irritations to vent about.

Unfortunately, apart from the deaths of a few mildly famous people (who didn't even have the common courtesy to die in interesting ways), there seems to be very little to entertain such a perverse spirit as is possessed by myself, and so I am forced to revisit older topics (which I had bookmarked for a bit of a kicking amongst all of the packing frenzy).

So, let us turn to the delightful subject of party funding, i.e. we taxpayers being forced to pay for the corrupt, venal and lazy (no, you fool; I'm talking about the forced funding of political parties, not benefits).

First, Trixy is righteously and eloquently pissed off.
Why should politics be allowed subsidies? If political parties want more cash, perhaps they should try address the problems of why people aren't joining up with their parties or making donations. If a company was losing money say, by not selling it's product, would it be allowed to ask tax payers for funding to carry on? No. It would either sink or adapt so people did want to by their products.

Trixy also points out that UKIP are (as far as I know) the only party opposed to the state funding of political parties; because, you see, we've been stitched up, yet again. Are you surprised? I'm not; those bunch of fuckers ruling us don't give two shits what we, the voters and the funders of their lavish lifestyle, say or think or do. Not really.

We are still exercised about the battle between Tory, Labour and LibDem, and to do so is to miss the point; it is no longer a contest between political parties, a struggle between ideologies. No.

It is now the politicians versus the voters; that is the only battle that matters. The three main political parties now, fundamentally, agree on almost everything.
  • The bastards might quibble about how best to distribute both taxes and the methods of raising them, but they pretty much agree that on the overall levels of tax.

  • They may wrangle over how best to control our lives and everyday behaviour through legislation and punitive tax regimes, but none of them disagree that we must be controlled.

  • They may have the odd disagreement over climate change and the extent to which humans are to blame, but they have all accepted the unproven theory that it is our fault and that we must be made to suffer for our own good. It's a little like the treatment of left-handers during Victorian times: the people may suffer for some spurious, quasi-religious mania, but it's for their own good and to the benefit of society really.

  • All three of these stupid cunt fuck shithead parties agree that it is only the state that can mend the ills of the world, despite ample and incontrovertable evidence to the contrary.

  • And, lastly, all three parties agree that they should be paid more—whether it is MPs moaning that they should be paid £100,000 per year (plus expenses) or forcing us to stump up for their plush party offices and nubile researchers—and that the people who should stump up is, once again, our own good selves.

Well, you know what? Fuck you, you fucking bunch of bastards. You know why we object to being forced to fund you? It is for the same reasons that we will not voluntarily fund you: we don't trust you, you don't stand for anything that we believe in, and we are firmly convinced that you will waste our fucking cash on jaunts, junkets and free travel for you latest cockwarmers.

My impecunious, Hellenic buddy has written a most entertaining post summarising precisely why we should think all of this. For a start, I agree on this point on the difference between Major sleaze and NuLabour sleaze (indeed, I have been banging on about it for years).
There is now considerable evidence, though, to suggest that the situation under this government is worse than it was under the previous Conservative administration. One reason for this, I would suggest, is that in the Major years, most of the instances of “sleaze” that eventually helped to bring that government to its knees were individual misdemeanours – extramarital affairs, cash in brown envelopes, the Aitken affair, and so on. What they were not – for the most part, and with some exceptions – were indicative of systematic abuse of the power of government. They were born of personal failings, even though the frequency with which they seemed to occur spoke all too eloquently of a party that had grown fat and lazy through years of power.

I entirely agree with this assessment, and concur with Mr E's conclusions.
What ties many of the scandals of the Blair years together, as has often been remarked before, is that they involve New Labour’s fascination with, and close ties to, rich men – Ecclestone, Robinson, Hinduja, Anschutz, Mittal, Berlusconi, not to mention the many donors that have received knighthoods and peerages since 1997. Time and again, ministers – not obscure backbenchers or PPS's - have, even on the most generous possible interpretation of the facts, found themselves in trouble thanks to these links, their heads turned by the whiff of money, like a frisky Labrador getting excited over a particularly fragrant bitch. We can speculate on the reasons why men and women who purportedly went into politics to help the poor end up sniffing the hind quarters of the rich, but only the most diehard of Labour loyalists would deny that it is so.

There are some, as Mr E points out, who still retain enough integrity to speak out against the state funding of parties; that's right, it's the Vulcan again.
It would be a huge mistake to make up the shortfall by forcing extra money from the hard pressed taxpayer. It would be absurd – and insulting – for politicians to argue that because they cannot any longer be trusted to raise big money from a few people, they therefore should simply take money off everyone through the tax system. There are two answers to the money shortfall from the large donors. The first is to spend less. Spend less on market research, computers and fancy campaigning – get back on the streets with a volunteer army. The second is to enrol more members . If you persuade every member to give £10 for an election – not a big ask – you can have a £7.5million campaign from just 750,000 supporters, far fewer than used to belong to the Conservative party. That’s still more than enough money to annoy voters if you spend it badly!

Quite. But sensible though Mr Redwood is in saying all of this, it does not alter the fact that Mr Redwood is a member of, and an MP for, a political party whose avowed policy is in favour of state funding. (Mr Redwood thinks that it is "stupid" to vote for UKIP and doesn't see the point of the party, and yet Mr Redwood is also a EUsceptic. I think that I'm starting to see a pattern here. Mr Redwood is happy to stick with the Tories because he himself benefits from it, but he actually seems to disagree with all of their key policies. Mr Redwood appears to be a fucking hypocrite, even though he actually talks sense. I shall put him in the Iain Dale camp of people who hold sensible views and yet seem determined to continue to retain membership of a party whose views almost entirely oppose their own, in the hope that they may change it from within. A bit like the Tory/NuLabour attitude to the EU actually.)

No state funding. Go fuck yourselves, you cunts.

Friday, December 22, 2006

Thank you to the commenter who pointed out that your humble Devil is featured, amongst others in our fine community, in The Times today!
But blogging, and political blogging in particular, gave an opportunity for the previously voiceless to add to the quality of the debate. To that end, the most foul-mouthed of bloggers, Devil's Kitchen, was always likely to provoke (sometimes disgust, but more often admiration).

Anyway, to all my readers and commenters: have a very merry fucking Christmas and a joyously sweary new year! I shall be spending a rather lovely time with the lovely Trixy and assorted friends. And surely, come the new year, fame and fortune beckon...?

Wednesday, December 20, 2006

Miliband is an arsehole: part the... oh, I've lost count...

Well, after an eleven hour journey, I have finally moved my life to London. And so I shall booze for Christmas and become deeply motivated in the new year, oh yes I will.

Anyway, just to convince my lovely readers (that's a compliment and the only Christmas treat anyone's getting from me. Humbug!) that I am not dead, I shall entertain you with some more foolishness from Miliband.
There was renewed interest last week in the idea of personal carbon allowances as a progressive and effective tool in helping individuals fight climate change.

Yes, amongst the very stupid and the analogous MSM...
But what about their name?

David Chaytor MP believes we need something more catchy and suggests 'personal pollution permits'. Further suggestions gratefully received.

The name? The fucking name? For fuck's sake, what is this: a PR brainstorming session? So, I left a comment which (to their credit) Miliband's blog moderators let through unedited.
How about "Fraudulent Science Cards"? Or maybe "Knee-Jerk Reaction Permits". Personally, I favour "Miliband's Folly".

This is so typical of NuLabour, it really is; and you, David, are one of the worst exponents of this attitude. And what I refer to is the fact that, despite numerous people pointing out here -- with as much evidence to back them as you have for your claims -- that the science is at best inconclusive and at worst fraudulent, you have consistently ignored these protests.

Instead, you are pressing ahead with a scheme which will be unworkable, intrusive, expensive and will not achieve the result that you want; and the thing that you are most concerned about is the NAME?

David, communication is a two-way street: you, like all politicians, seem to be utterly ignoring the protestations of people who are -- in the main -- far more knowledgeable than yourself, and then you have the audacity to claim that this blog is an exercise in communication.

You are a fraud, a hypocrite and a liar. Now, just do us the favour of admitting it and remove this expensive exercise in futility.


Bizarrely, I was attacked for using a pseudonym. So, I responded—under my own name—to one of the more literate commenters, Zoe F.
and DK, if you want to 'smack-talk', do it to ppls faces (i.e in person, not hiding behind a 'Devil's Advocate' pseudonym

And now you know my real name: does it make one iota of difference? Do you "know" me better? Nope. This might just as well be a pseudonym: the difference is, ironically, that David does know who the Devil's Kitchen is (indeed, he has quoted me) but he has no idea who Chris M****** is.
(I've read the BBC article where certain arguers attack the _person_ making the argument rather than the argument itself to distract from the case in point, so there. Bad Form, man, tut tut)

It's called an ad hominem argument. I have provided links and information to the arguments many, many times; both here and on my blog.
no-one should be able to argue against the fact that certain man-made concoctions are what are making some people allergy prone and/or ill etc etc...


Are you saying that no one should be allowed to (which means that you disagree with the concept of free speech) or that no one should be able to produce science which rather strongly implies that allergies, etc. are actually caused by a lack of exposure to "dirt" (which would make you a fool)?

Good lord, even David tries to back up his arguments (occasionally).


The only people more stupid than Miliband hanging around that site are his commenters.

Merry fucking Chrstmas!
Your humble Devil is once more a-travelling today (a gruelling drive to the Smoke with the last of his life) so posting will be light. However, I'd like to point you towards this rather nice piece from the Faerie Lady.
Finally, why is it that your class and location depend on whether or not you are a prostitute, hooker, call-girl, escort, courtesan or mistress? A Rose by any other name still gets paid to go down.

Well, it made me laugh!

Tuesday, December 19, 2006

Shut your fucking face, Polly

Look, it's been a really long day and I am really not in the mood for any fucking about and yet Polly fucking Toynbee continues to write her poisonous, ill-informed crap. And so I am dragged away from filling endless black sacks with the accumulated rubbish of the last decade in order to put the boot into this fucking, stupid woman (even though Trixy has already conjured some, frankly, rather unpleasant images of her own).
Here is a Christmas message from the Department for Work and Pensions: there will be a harsh crackdown on lazy, feckless, work-shy scroungers and all other undeserving poor. All who Can-Work-But-Won't-Work will feel the lash of John Hutton, as he announces a tough review of benefits to be published soon. 'Tis indeed the season to be jolly.

Yes, it is if you are earning £140,000 a year for writing two columns of crap for a shitty fucking student newspaper full of fuck-faced, know-nothing arseholes like George Monbiot. Fucking hell, he's a piss-ignorant hypocritical cunt as well; he's the only reason that I can say that Polly is not the most awful, bigoted shitface in the world.
There is nothing wrong with his reasoning, since the welfare social contract always ordained that those who can work must work in exchange for the state caring decently for those who can't. "Work is the best welfare, a hand up, not a hand out" was New Labour's first mantra and it remains true for most people most of the time, but not all.

Oh, what a surprise.
This social contract has mostly been kept by both sides under Labour.

You are a lying whore, Polly; I cannot believe that you can actually believe the shit that you write and thus can only conclude that you lie, lie, lie.
Tax credits and benefits for children have doubled and, for the first time, pensioners are now less likely to be poor than the general population, thanks to pension credits.

No, Polly, you pig-ignorant piece of crap; what Labour has done is to artificially inflate wages, via the minimum wage, and not raise the Personal Tax Allowance. In this way, they have raped the poor for more money than ever before. They have then made the poor beg—beg, Polly, you evil shit, on their hands and knees and through intrusive forms—for some of their own money back. And they have done this through a system so complicated and opaque that even those who administer it have no idea who should be paid what; the result is the gross overpayments—£1.9 billion here, 1.8 billion there—and the threatening demands for repayments of large amounts of capital from those who could never afford it. Fuck you, Polly, fuck you right in the ear.

Instead of letting the poor keep their own hard-earned money, Labour has made them supplicants to the state. The same is true of pensioners: instead of raising the state pension in line with inflation, NuLabour have forced them to beg for some crumbs from the goverment's table. It is a disgusting and immoral way to act towards those who have worked and saved under successive governments (who have pissed away the money that should have provided the pensioners' living). Further, Brown changed the way in which inflation is measured, which gives a much lower figure, and thus allowing The Gobblin' King to justify his meanness.
Fulfilling their side of the imagined contract, 70% of the long-term unemployed have taken jobs and there are now virtually no young long-term claimants, thanks to the New Deal.

Yeah, Pol, you know how that works? Someone signs on for six months; they are then faced with being forced onto the New Deal. Or, of course, they sign off for a week (running up debts) and then sign on again a couple of weeks later. Being a new sign on, they are not counted amongst the long-term unemployed. You thick bitch.
But yesterday Hutton shook a threatening stick at those he regards as social-contract defaulters. He made a good case: one in 10 of those who draw jobseeker's allowance has spent six of the past seven years on benefits, yet in many areas there are unfilled low-skilled jobs alongside high rates of unemployment. If the jobs are there, why don't they take them? He picked on Glasgow, which has above average unemployment and twice as many unskilled vacancies as the national average.

Is it that simple?

Yes, it is, Polly. Remove all benefits and watch those jobs get filled.
There is a very grey line between the plain idle and those...

We've had sixty years to get this right, Polly; how much longer do you want to give your precious state legislators?
...who are illiterate...

Whose fault is this? That's right, Polly, the state has failed to educate them to even the most rudimentary standard.
... mentally unfit, psychologically odd...

Far fewer than you would imagine; have you ever watched Trainspotting?
... ex-prisoners...

Against whom employers are not allowed to discriminate, and who do not have to declare their record for minor crimes.
... unattractive to employers...

Generic catch-all crap. Why are they unattractive to employers?
... non-English speakers (Labour has stopped free English courses)...

Although they have spent £100 million in the last year on translation services.
... drug addicts, alcoholics and other bad prospects.

Tough. Those are choices.
In Glasgow, for example, what are these vacancies? Mostly part-time hotel and catering, bar work and waitering with unsocial hours.

I know a number of people who work unsocial hours (not least Trixy who, leaving aside anything else, is on 24 hour call for a great part of the week). Besides, this is, again, a choice; if it was a choice between working "unsocial hours"—not being able to go on the piss with your mates every night—and starving to death, I think that you would see those jobs filled pronto.
Those running programmes to help the unemployed into work say these are student jobs, or for young foreigners: the hardcore unemployed are simply not equipped to do this work.

What? Why the fuck not? If students or those who can barely say, "hello" in English can do the work, then why can the long-term unemployed not do those jobs and do them better?
Many live on peripheral estates miles out of town with no night buses back - a taxi costs three hours' work at the minimum-wage.

Actually, Polly, Glasgow has a really quite reasonable nightbus service (as does Edinburgh). And there is always the option of fucking walking, you know. It would help those obesity stats too.
It was glib of Hutton to say of east European migrants: "If workers from Poland can take advantage of these vacancies in our major cities, why can't our own people?"

Because the Polish people have a work ethic, and they don't have the large fucking benefits that our indigenous layabouts do.
Of course employers choose a perky young Polish graduate with no family to support, renting floor space in a communal flat, to wait tables, instead of the last remaining long-term claimants, depressed, lacking confidence and public face-to-face skills.

Why would the worker's familial or domestic conditions be of any consequence to the employer, you nitwit? They might be of concern to the employee ("can I afford to take this job? Can I pay my rent? Can I support my family?") but is of bugger all interest to the employer. The employer offers a certain job for a certain wage: it is up to the employee whether they agree to this contract or not.

The employer will care whether or not the employee is lacking "public face-to-face skills", but were the long-term unemployed to get off their fucking arseholes and make an effort, then they might find that they have an advantage over someone who barely speaks our fucking language.
But let's keep this in perspective: there are only 100,000 of these hard cases, and the jobseeker's allowance is a pathetic £57.45 a week, not enough to survive on. I tried, and fell into unavoidable debt within weeks.

Don't be a silly cunt, Polly; jobseekers' allowance is very far from being the only benefit available; the main others are, of course, housing benefit (wherein the government pay your rent) and Council Tax benefit (wherein you don't pay any).

So, what do you have to pay for? Well, before I discovered the delights of the farmers' market, I used to spend about £20 a week on food. Before my flat was filled with computers, I was paying about £10 per week on gas and electricity. I make that a total of £30 out of nearly £60 per week (and I am living on my own). Shall we say another £10 for water and—hey, go wild!—let's add another £10 per week to the fod bill, shall we? I reckon that leaves another £7.45 per week; surely enough to travel to the dole office and odd job interview (and, yes, they can walk: they are doing fuck all else).
Those in debt fear taking a job as loans sharks chase them once they start earning.

Aw. Diddums.
Let's look at how the state breaks its side of the social contract.

Wait a minute, Polly; are you admitting that your precious state fucks everything up? Fucking hell, there's hope for you yet.
The real value of that £57.45 has halved since 1979: it's now worth just 10% of the average wage and falling every year.

Meanwhile, Labour's New Deal for the young and for single parents was good but for the over-25s was always weak, with feeble training and little personal adviser support. Yet these 100,000 need huge help and ongoing support to stay in work: two-thirds of new claimants have claimed before in a revolving door of insecure jobs.

Why do they need help to stay in work? No one else gets "help" to hold down a job; why should these people?
The government boasts of 2m more jobs in a booming economy, yet British and EU policy lets more attractive workers roll in, undercutting wages without any balancing obligation on employers to give jobs and training to the unemployed.

Polly, you know full well that we cannot stop anyone from the EU entering this country. You also ought to know that we are seeing net emigration, i.e. more people are leaving to escape you and your piss-awful fuck-toy, Gordo, than want to come into this god-forsaken land.
In Glasgow, there were once no flights to Poland. Now there are three a day.

Yes, isn't the market wonderful?
The government is in denial about the full impact of the migration that helps power the economy by keeping down wages. Meanwhile, the minimum wage is so low it can be impossible for those without children to work at a profit. Why work if it leaves you even worse off? The social contract says work is the best welfare, but for some it isn't. One reason why is housing benefit - the glitch in the system. Beveridge never solved it, Labour promised a review but abandoned it; yet losing housing benefit on taking a job is a great disincentive to work.

Yes! Can it be that Polly finally gets it? That she has noticed the 90% marginal deduction rates that prevent people from going into work? Can it be that Polly is going to start advocating a Citizen's Basic Income or, as Timmy puts it, "a non-means tested income paid to all, irrespective of employment or not"?

No, of course not.
Look closer at housing and see the damage done by gross inequality, as wealth at the top stamps on those below.

No, I tell you what, Polly; just for a change, why don't you tell us how the majority of the poor use their relative wealth instead. Do they invest it wisely, or do the sales of cigarettes go up? Do the children get new shoes, or do the parents get a holiday on the Costa Del Sol? Do hundreds of new businesses spring up or is there a new TV in the leeeee-oooownge?
London has the highest unemployment, with half its children born poor. Yet it is also the richest place. This is no mere accident of Dickensian contrasts, but partly cause and effect.

Really? I'm sure that you are going to explain in detail—as opposed to in your usual bigoted broad-brush protestations—exactly how this happens, aren't you?
As the City reaps its £9bn bonuses, that money fuels an ultrasonic house-price boom.

Yup, because those City types are all buying houses in Peckham and Dagenham, eh? Don't tell me, Pol, there bonuses are actually brutally ripped from the hands of the poor handing over their meagre savings to put in a pension too, eh?
It's bad enough around the country at 180% up in the past decade, but far worse in London. Rents are sent sky high, making it impossible for the unemployed to lose housing benefit by taking a job.

My brother pays £60 a week for his room in Ladbroke Grove; it's hardly the fucking Ritz but it is also not the apocalyptic amount of unobtainable cash that you are implying, Polly. In fact, it's pretty comparable with a lowish Edinburgh rent.
They will never own a shed in the capital...

Cry me a fucking river, Polly; since when was owning your own home a human right?
... as the gap yawns ever wider between the 70% homeowners counting untaxed winnings every month, while the rest and their children are consigned to social housing forever.

Well, we had better relax the planning laws so that the government (or, preferably, someone else) can build all of this housing then, hadn't we? Unless—and here's an idea—once the houses are built, we let the tenants buy them for well below the market price. Hang on, haven't we done that before...?
But asked yesterday about this wild inequality, Hutton intoned the stock reply mouthed by Labour and Tories alike: "It is our aim to raise the floor not to lower the ceiling."

Quite right: capitalism is not a zero sum game, you fucking numpty.
Why is the language of rights and responsibilities, of the duty to contribute as well as to draw out, never applied to those who dance on the ceiling as they spray jeroboams of Cristal over those living on the floor?

Sorry, Pol: "draw out"? What, precisely, do your jeroboam-weilding fantasy figures "draw out"? Do you think that their children use state schools? That they use the NHS? That they draw anything away from the state's spending?

Why don't you tell us, Polly? After all, you'd know.
It is the job of government to police its welfare state rigorously or risk it losing public trust. Yet who could look at the deformities of the way we live now and conclude that the most pressing problem is the 100,000 misfits at the bottom?

And your solution is...? We evil fucking libertarians have got one: it's called the Citizen's Basic Income.
But before you despair of Labour...

Despair? It's not despair that I feel: it's blind, spitting rage!
... wait for next July's comprehensive spending review.

Why? Do you really think that it is going to announce anything different? No, it'll be more of the same: yet more complicated tax benefits, yet more subversions of the free voting process by ensuring that more citizen's become state supplicants, yet more corruption and decreased social mobility.
Even as Hutton gestured with his big stick, his benefit review will offer more support to get people into work and easier borrowing from the social fund to help people escape the loan sharks.

Polly, where are these loansharks of yours who only pursue people when they have money? In your fucking imagination, that's where.
But, above all, he repeated Labour's pledge to halve child poverty by 2010 - no shirking, no moving the goalposts.

Oh, yes, Polly, because NuLabour's "pledge" is infinitely more cast-iron than the NuTories' "aspiration", eh? You poor, deluded fool.
That means some £4bn of credits and benefits must be announced within the next seven months.

I shall prepare to count my blessings.
In its crab-like way, Labour talks tough to shore up faith in the welfare system, knowing it must soon pay out more large sums or fail in what Hutton still calls the most important target of all.

You really are the fucking pits, aren't you? You fucking Champagne-socialist shitbag: you stinking, hideous hypocrite, why don't you fuck off and die? Fuck you.

This fucking sucks

Via Harry Hutton, I find this frankly extraordinary story of a 17 year old boy sent down for 10 years because some 15 year old lass sucked his wee teenage prick. Naturally, this was in the US.

Andrew Sullivan comments on the reason why this happened (a mandatory sentence, presumably thought up by a bunch of fucking piss-head wankers with all of the brains of an earthworm).
The presiding judge argued he had to lock the boy up for a decade without the prospect of parole:
"...while I am very sympathetic to Wilson's argument regarding the injustice of sentencing this promising young man with good grades and no criminal history to ten years in prison without parole and a lifetime registration as a sexual offender because he engaged in consensual oral sex with a 15-year-old victim only two years his junior, this Court is bound by the Legislature's determination that young persons in Wilson's situation are not entitled to the misdemeanor treatment now accorded to identical behavior..."

A decade for a consensual "act of oral sodomy"? I suppose the lad's lucky he isn't being castrated.

What the fuck is up with this shit? I mean, seriously? This is what happens when you introduce mandatory sentencing over a judge's discretion: an absolute travesty of justice.


Still, I'm sure that that fucking red-headed devil, Rebekkah cunting Wade (no, I can't be arsed to spell her name properly) is happy; this would suit her right down to the ground, the evil old cunt that she is.
I must confess that John Redwood was the Tory saying those things that I most liked when he ran for leader many years ago. Now, he has a blog (which, I trust, did not cost £10,000,000,000,000,000 a la Miliband).

Might be interesting.

Monday, December 18, 2006

Party time!

So, I have been down south for the weekend once more, attending—amongst other things—Iain and Guido's Christmas drinkies for the contributors to The Little Red book Of New Labour Sleaze. A massive thanks to our hosts (and especially to Iain for allowing the young lady to gatecrash).

It was entertaining, if occasionally confusing ("Oh, you're Will. Nice to meet you; now, what's your blog name?"), to meet some bloggers in the flesh; those attending included Paul Linford, Tom Paine (who had come all the way from Russia to attend—full marks that man (and I thought that Edinburgh was a long way!)), Wat Tyler, Mike Rouse, Dizzy, Croydonian, Matthew Sinclair and James Cleverly. Ellee Seymour was also there, and she has some pictures up too (including one of your humble Devil).

Anyway, it was all good, clean fun and much booze was drunk. Although the lovely Trixy was slightly disconcerted to find herself relegated (or elevated, depending on how you look at it!) to "Mrs DK" within mere minutes...!

Friday, December 15, 2006

Our government: a bunch of cunts

Is it me, or is this government the most vicious, corrupt and morally bankrupt shower of shits in living history?

Ministers are pressing ahead with plans to limit the Freedom of Information Act

Right. And why are you doing that?

The government has said the changes could save £5m of taxpayers' money.

Oh, so the government are getting concerned about tax payers now, are they? Funny that, considering they've spent the last decade trying to get every possible fucking penny off us, even to the extent that if they tried to tax me on the coins down the back of my sofa, I would not be in the least bit fucking surprised.

The government currently only answers requests which cost less than £600 to research, but the new plans will include the staff costs.

Hold on a minute, don't we pay their wages in our taxes? Aren't they 'civil' servants? Surely if we want an answer to a question which will inform us how our government is functioning (and I use that in the loosest sense of the term)then that is a good way of spending public money? Much better than giving £873 a year for every man, woman and child to the EU, anyway.

Mind you, even in the European Parliament, Commissioners have to answer questions from MEPs, have a time limit by which they must answer the question, and if they don't then the question is referred to a parliamentary committee and the Commissioner gets into lots of trouble.

The EU having a better system of questioning than Westminster? And people still support this Labour government?

What are the options, though? David Cameron planning on saving the country through a series of healthy recipes for all the family using a magical combination of broccoli and cabbage?

Sack the fucking lot, that's what I say.
And so the whole sorry mess rumbles on...
Reform of European Union institutions is set to dominate the second and final day of its year-end summit in Brussels.

Finnish PM Matti Vanhanen said the new constitution, rejected last year by French and Dutch voters, should not be thrown out entirely.

Just fucking DIE, won't you. Fucking hellski, how many times am I going to have to hear about this undead shibboleth rising from the fucking grave? And where's our fucking referendum, Blair, you cunt?

Fighting fat

This story is just so wonderfully speculative that one almost fears for the sanity of the Beeb reporter.
The rising levels of obesity could bankrupt the NHS if left unchecked, doctors warn.

I'm sorry: I thought that the NHS was pretty much bankrupt already. Obviously I was being a bit fucking premature.
University of Glasgow expert Naveed Sattar said the cost of treating obesity to the health service was 9%.

Er... 9% of what? 9% of the patients weight in pounds, 9% of the NHS budget, 9% of UK GDP, 9% of world GDP? What?
But he warned this would rise as the number of obese adults rose from one in five to one in three by 2010.

He said health experts, schools and the food industry had to take proactive measures to tackle the problem, the British Medical Journal reported.

Why should the food companies do anything? They are trying to maximise their profits: if people cannot control themselves then that is their fault.

I've said it before and I'll say it again: the body is a very simple machine; if you put more energy into it than you burn, then that extra energy will be stored a fat. Okay?
Professor Sattar, an expert in metabolic medicine, said research had linked obesity to a range of diseases and disorders, including heart disease, cancer, depression, back pain, diabetes and skin problems.

Professor Sattar said: "The problem of rising prevalence in obesity may get much worse - rates could climb still further, bankrupting the health system and leading soon to reductions in life expectancy."

Cry me a fucking river. If some bastard so lacks self-discipline (or any kind of personal pride) that they get to the stage where their gross obesity shortens their life, then fuck 'em. That's entirely their problem: it's pretty much natural selection, isn't it?
He said while individuals "clearly have some responsibility for their health", the rest of society should also play more of a role.

Fuck off. You might be able to make that argument for, say, passive smoking or car exhaust fumes, but not for eating.
He said the food industry should own up to the role they play through advertising and schools should be doing more to promote good diets and lifestyles.

He also called for obesity to become a core part of medical training and for public health consequences to be considered "for all decisions made in public life".

He's another interfering doctor. Please, do us a favour and go back to doing what you do best, i.e. doctoring rather than politics.

Just fucking leave it, will you?

There are always those who think that the world revolves around them, eh?
The natural family of Billie-Jo Jenkins want to change the law so they can bring a civil action against her foster father Sion Jenkins, they told the BBC.

Mr Jenkins was cleared at a second retrial in February of killing the 13-year-old in East Sussex in 1997.

Billie-Jo's natural family, from east London, want to bring a civil action to establish liability for what happened.

But they say they are being prevented by a law which means civil action must be brought within six years.

Well, I'm sorry but that's just tough shit. Why the fuck should the law be changed simply because you don't happen to like it; where the hell would it end?
They told the BBC they are consulting lawyers about their options.

Billie-Jo was beaten to death at her foster parents' home in Hastings in 1997.

Her foster father, Sion Jenkins, of Hampshire, served six years for her murder before he was freed on appeal. He was then formally acquitted when juries in two re-trials failed to agree a verdict.

Right, so the evidence was not considered strong enough to convict him on those retrials; I imagine that, if he were in Scotland, the verdict may have been the famous Not Proven. But, as it is an English court, he is now considered an innocent man.
Billie-Jo's natural family want to bring a civil action but considered the move only after criminal proceedings concluded in February, nine years after her murder.

I'm sorry, but I really object to this idea. If someone is found innocent in a criminal court of justice then they should not have to go through the whole thing again in a civil court.
Billie-Jo's aunt, Maggie Coster. told the BBC: "All we're interested in is getting some sort of justice for Billie-Jo.

"She was a 13-year-old child brutally murdered - battered - and there's nobody to answer for it."

Look, I'm really sorry that you feel that way, but sometimes that's what happens. Sometimes murderers get away with it. Sion Jenkins has been found freed and that is how the situation should remain. Unless, of course, you have some particularly compelling new evidence?

Couple of questions here: does anyone know the reason why, and for how long, Billie-Jo was with her foster parents?
BBC home affairs correspondent Danny Shaw said the government is drawing up plans to change the limitation period in civil cases, but it is not clear how far the reforms will go and if the new rules would apply retrospectively.

You cannot, you simply cannot do that. Retrospective laws are always difficult to implement and are, really, fundamentally rather unfair.
Next year, the Law Lords will rule on the case of the serial rapist Iorworth Hoare, who won £7 million on the lottery. One of his victims was prevented from suing him because the attack happened 18 years ago.

If, as is implied, she didn't attempt to bring the case until after he won the Lottery, then I'm afraid that she is simply gold-digging. That should be no more a compelling reason to drag someone through the courts than that this is the Year of the Fruitbat, or something.

Fucking hell, I hate people sometimes...

Polly: on heat

I am extremely busy packing up ten years' worth of accumulated crap, but my impecunious, Hellenic friend has goaded me into addressing the load of old crap from Polly.
Word reaches me that the Devil's Kitchen is bubbling over with rage - after all, this hits all his sweet spots, doesn't it? Polly, Miliband and climate change; it's the perfect storm.

I fully expect him to take time out from his busy schedule of packing and travelling to give us a few choice words on this latest contribution to the debate. I challenge him to try doing it without using the word "cunt".

I bet he can't.

Well, I shall take him up on that challenge: let's see if I really can fisk an entire Polly article, involving both Miliband and climate change without using the "c" word eh? Nope; I've just read it over again and there is simply no way...
Hotter still and hotter it grows.

The only place that it's getting substantially hotter is within the foetid folds of Polly's cunt; it seems that, rebuffed by The Gobblin' King, Polly has her eyes set on younger meat.
Yes, perhaps for Tony Blair - but rather more for the world. Not a week goes by now without hair-raising new climate reports.

Every one of them more ill-informed than the one before. Only, science is a little beyond Polly's grasp; let's face it, she's supposed to be an "economics writer" and she cannot even grasp the relatively simple concepts involved in that: she's go no fucking chance with any hard science.
After the Stern report...

... which everyone with any kind of knowledge realised was so fucking flawed as to be utterly useless as a serious document; it was little more than a piece of government propaganda...
... this week finds the Arctic ice melting faster than previously thought...

... Ah, yes, that'll be this report then, which Gavin Ayling rightly derided as being no more "than statistics and guesswork"...
... and the Met Office reporting that 2006 is the hottest year since records began. Will anything be done in time?

Polly, the trouble with you lot is that you are assuming that a) we are the sole factor in warming and that b) we can do anything about it. These are pretty fucking big assumptions, frankly, love.
Political pessimists fear that nothing short of the catastrophic flooding of New York, with millions dead...

... You'd absolutely love that, wouldn't you, you vindictive, old horror?
... will make the rich world understand that climate change really is the greatest global terror of all.

What? What the fuck are you talking about, you silly bitch? Have you not heard of the mediaeval warm period (when sea temperatures were at least 1 degree Celsius warmer than they are now): I don't remember that being an extinction level event. In fact, I'm pretty fucking certain that humans managed to live through it rather well.
Now the Organisation for Economic Cooperation and Development issues a warning on the future of the Alpine skiing industry. Could a lack of snow in Klosters, Gstaad and Courchevel have the same electrifying effect on powerful opinion formers without millions having to die first? Or will the resorts just bring in ever more gigantic artificial snow makers belching out volumes more CO2?

And, remind me why the fuck that is relevent? Don't you ever read the dissenting voices (of which there are plenty) and those who point out—using, you know, science—that CO2 emissions really don't have that much of an effect and any effect that they do have is logarithmic, not exponential? Don't you ever let that thought enter your raddled, bewigged head?
The climate still hovers uncertainly at the borders of politics.

It's still hovering on the borders of science, actually.
Its salience rises, but it still lacks authentic political traction to turn it into politics as we know it. Those who genuinely put green issues at the top of their agenda still have to place themselves outside the conventional two-party system. In a small sign of the times, Labour got a fright in a Kentish Town byelection last week, trailing third after Lib Dems and Greens. David Cameron has done well by stealing green iconography to repaint the image of his party. His Vote Blue, Go Green message and fuzzy oak tree do have green roots in conservative tradition - their green-welly rural heritage. He challenges Labour to introduce tough annual targets for CO2 emissions, pledging to cut some taxes and increase green tax. The Lib Dems, with a far stronger, well-worked-out regime, also offer green energy taxes as the answer. Both parties now look greener than Labour - but Labour may be about to trounce them both.

Well, you could be right, Pol; after all, no one is better at punishing tax-rises than this bunch of incumbent cunts.
Until now, while Cameron has flaunted his mini-windmill, Labour's green light has flashed only intermittently in public. Are they serious?

Actually, I've asked that of NuLabour a number of times; usually I employ the rising tones of incredulity as I rage, "Are they fucking serious? What the fuck are they playing at this time?"
They have led the way in pushing the EU to toughen its carbon-trading regime and engaged with India and China on new technologies - but these aren't as eye-catching as huskies. Attracting attention for what matters can be hard: this week Douglas Alexander made a resoundingly important environmental announcement on re-regulating buses - but it went hardly reported.

That's because it is fucking tedious, except that one could point out that governments in general, and this bunch of sunts in particular, are totally talentless at running anything. For fuck's sake, they can't even buy Post-It Notes without pissing away £660 million!

NuLabour snatching yet more power (and then inevitably fucking it up and back-tracking at a cost of billions) is hardly a newsworthy story these days.
Buses, used in two out of three public-transport journeys, never interest well-paid newsrooms that don't use them; they prefer endless stories on the £5 charge on air tickets.

Well, you said it, Polly. What was your salary again: £140,000? And don't tell me that you get the bus to your Spanish villa?
It is 20 years since Margaret Thatcher disastrously deregulated buses. Now Alexander is giving councils the power to control them again. It should end the bus wars on popular routes and bus deserts on other routes: it could replicate Ken Livingstone's bus triumph and reverse the Thatcher drop in bus ridership.

Don't be a fucking pillock, Polly; the drop in bus ridership is not simply because of deregulation. Cars have become cheaper, credit easier to obtain and the fact is, no matter how you try to dress it up, cars are simply more convenient. To attempt to pass off any fall in numbers simply onto deregulation is stupid, ignorant and lazy reporting of the very worst kind.
There will be a virtuous trade-off: councils can apply for cash for new buses from the transport department, but only if they bring in road pricing.

There are times, Polly, when I have to ask myself whether you an incurable optimist or if you really are this stupid. If you want to know just one reason why road pricing, as recently proposed, is a fucking ridiculous idea, then you might want to read Unity: he thinks the plan is totally, fucking insane and he's a card-carrying Labour man.
This should start a great environmental push to get people out of cars and on to new and better buses.

That's right, and you'll be in the vanguard, won't you Polly? You'll be there, leading by example; just like you did when you demanded that everyone should publish what they earn...
So here a major left-right divide may open up if Tory councils refuse to trade buses for congestion charging, while Labour and Lib Dem councils seize the day, exposing the thin reality of Cameron's green claims. But so far Labour is losing the green battle. Blair and Brown have failed to make this their number-one hot-button domestic political issue, still haunted by fuel-protester phobia, uncertain how to get a political grip.

I think that you may be onto a loser here, Polly; it doesn't seem as though Tory councils are averse to making people's lives a little more miserable and expensive through the application of a little eco-religious zeal. I suggest that you rethink.

You see, people do love to have power: it makes them feel important when their dick has stopped working. As such, the kind of people on our councils are, in the main, certainly not against having more control over the lives of people under them.
Now the younger generation - Miliband and Alexander - are leading the way.

They are certainly leading the way in ignorance and stupidity; do remember that Miliband was the Minister who was unaware of a wave power generator that has been feeding the grid for the last six years. He also, apparently, believes that "evidence of cause and effect [between CO2 emissions and climate change] was unambiguous." Miliband is a liar.
Last night, in a remarkably radical speech to the Fabians, David Miliband showed how to capture the green flag for Labour. He planted a red/green standard that the blue/green Tories can never match. Here at last was the environment turned into progressive politics, no longer outside the political bloodstream but at the heart of the matter. Here is clear green water between left and right, as Miliband brings progressive ideology into the argument. He makes it as clear as day why the Conservatives could never cope with global warming, but Labour can. He lays out the intellectual framework for Labour's capture of green politics, with the practical policies to prove it.

You see, Miliband is already there, face between Polly's legs; his glasses smeared with her vaginal secretions as he pleasures her swollen, cock-like clitoris with his forked tongue. Polly—thighs high and wide, hand on the back of Miliband's head and urging him further into her scabby folds—is already cumming strongly, bellowing in pleasure as she wonders how she ever thought that Gordon could match young David's stamina.
A reversal of climate change needs strong action by the state at home and abroad, especially in the EU; Tory shrink-the-state Euroscepticism can't do that.

Er, what "Tory shrink-the-state Euroscepticism"? Let me know when they have some and I might consider voting for the bastards again.
It needs admission that the damaged environment is a market failure; the Tories can't admit that.

OK, remember that sentence...
Simply taxing energy is wickedly regressive, harming the less well off without changing the habits of the rich; the Tories and the Lib Dems both choose energy taxation, despite its social injustice.

That's tough, Polly. What's more important: saving the world or Wayne and Waynetta being able to afford their cheap, package trip to whore themselves, ganting on each other's napper, in Aya Napa?
It takes facing down the old greens with their puritanical zest for de-growth: people will never vote to live in yurts in the woods, but they will vote for restraint and the most realistic chance of clean growth. International carbon trading is the only hope, harnessing the power of markets to find clean technology.

Erm, Polly, you have just stated that "the damaged environment is a market failure" and now you want to use the market to solve the vexed environmental question? Mental is the word for it, you idiot. For fuck's sake, woman! Can you not even be consistent in the space of one paragraph?

And as I have recently posted, the new technology is arriving. But making everyone poorer now is not going to speed up the delivery of that technology; rather the opposite, in fact. Can't you take a little time to research what you write? I mean, you only have to write two columns a week for your £140k: you could at least attempt to make them accurate.
But Miliband's electric radicalism comes in his plan for personal carbon allowances. Here is where social justice meets green politics for the first time.

"Oh yes, David, there, there, oh fuuuuuuuuck, yeeeeeeeees..."
Give every citizen the same quota of energy and let them buy and sell it on the open market. The half of the population who don't fly will make money from selling their quota to the half who do. Drive a gas-guzzling 4x4 and you will have to buy a quota from the third of the population with no access to a car.

I see, Polly; and who decides how much everyone gets, eh? And what happens when the points run out: does business grind to a halt?

Has it not also occurred to you, Polly (because it has to my father's local mechanic), that your "gas-guzzling 4x4"s are actually rather more fuel-efficient than your much-vaunted prole's battered old Fiat? Has it not occurred to you that it is your famous hard-working poor who are going to be hit by this; you know, the ones who cannot afford to live in the city and cannot afford the train? And who certainly cannot afford to buy a new, greener car? Or are you going to propose that the taxpayer should buy them a new car? Because I wouldn't put it past you, you grasping, statist bag.
Who could complain about such transparent fairness?

Well, I expect you would have a go at it, were it implemented by the Tories...
It is relatively easy to do: swiping a quota card to pay gas and electricity bills or buying petrol is a simpler transaction than Tesco's complex information on their loyalty card.

Whereas the government can't get any fucking IT system right: even were this proposal sensible, the state would completely fuck up the implementation.
In wartime, ration books were produced quickly for all, covering almost everything bought and sold, involving every little corner shop.

Yup, and people were mugged for their ration books; they had them stolen so that the local spiv could sell their entitlement back to them.
(Could paper ration books be easier than trying to computerise it all?)

No. Don't be pathetic.
Why is this a quintessentially Labour policy that the Tories would never copy? Because it in effect redistributes money from the rich to the poor, from the frequent flyers to never-flyers, with a parallel currency.

This argument is totally flawed, as I have illustrated above. What it does is simply to ensure that the poor are poorer. I look forward to you wandering around to the pensioner's house to tell them in person that, because they have run out of carbon points, they can have no heating this winter (even if they have the money to pay for it).
There are high hopes that this could be in the manifesto for the next election, ready to begin soon after. Is it politically saleable? It would begin at a moderate level. The current price of carbon for an average person's consumption is only £100 - not much incentive.

What? Over what timescale? And on who's figures? Even Stern calculated $85 per ton—yes, Polly, that's dollars—which translates to roughly £43 per ton.
But the price will have risen by then and the quota would be tightened each year to hit Miliband's 30% carbon cut by 2020. The tighter the quota, the more marketable new clean technologies become.

It's not a question of marketability, Polly; it's a question of engineering: there are technical problems that need to be overcome.

Plus, of course, your carbon-trading scheme has made the development costs far more expensive; amongst anything else, all of those horrible chemicals that are needed have just become more expensive (the mining companies have to buy carbon points), not to mention transporting them.
I suspect it will be hugely popular, a national game engaging even teenagers in quota-conservation wheezes. It tickles parts of the psyche that like to trade and bargain. Wear vests and save heating to sell some quota? But when to sell? Will the price rise or fall at the end of the year as everyone sells their excess? Will it rise in the summer as people buy quota for flying, or in the winter when it's cold? Imagine how keenly fluctuations in carbon-quota price will be followed as people decide when to buy or sell.

Bringing a massive amount of uncertainty to the price of fucking everything, you dozy cow. Polly, you have to be insane: it's the most charitable explanation of your tedious bullshit.
Here's the big question: what does Gordon Brown think?

Why don't you ask him while you are bending over your desk for a farewell fuck?
He met Miliband this week and the word is that he greeted it warmly. There are good reasons why Brown has been reluctant to "prove" his credentials by making gestures with green taxes on petrol now, when they only hit poorer drivers without a strong effect on petrol use. But Miliband's plan is the blend of fairness and environmentalism that Labour needs.

And its implementation will be the blend of technological fuck-up and economic spitefulness that has characterised this piece of shit government. But as long as Miliband is getting you off, what do you care, eh? And all of this shit to "solve" a problem that may not, actually, be a problem and the cause of which is highly uncertain; and it is suggested and, presumably, to be implemented by a man who has less than no knowledge about his brief. I mean, I really am absolutely filled with confidence (though not as filled as you, Polly, once David has finally slung his cock up your well-noshed cunt).

I mean, for fuck's sake...

UPDATE: Factchecking Pollyanna is onto this morning's column (whilst Polly is on Miliband's)...
REACH for the sky, mocking TEBAF Margot's enthusiasm for this pernicious and damaging piece of EU shit, is now up at EU-Nihilist.

Apologies for the slow uptake of that blog; I have been frantically busy. We are also stll looking for contributors who are interested in adding to what will hopefully become a one stop reference point for all matters EU.

NHS Fail Wail

I think that we can all agree that the UK's response to coronavirus has been somewhat lacking. In fact, many people asserted that our de...