Monday, July 31, 2006

Via Chris and MatGB, I find this little test which aims to match you to the party you should vote for in the European elections. Chris says:
Unsurprisingly the best group that fits my preferences is the Europe of Democracies and Diversities (EDD) Group, which translates to voting for UKIP.

Equally unsurprisingly, I got the same. However, the test does miss out the most crucial question, i.e. should the EU should exist at all? The answer is, of course, no.

A fan writes...

A email from a fan calling himself Rotten Borough Hound:
Judging by the rapidly diminished comment count, you have had your 15 minutes of fame, DK.

Give us all a break and ride off into the sunset.

The end of your blog will be no loss to the net or society.

You foul-mouthed, arrogant, opinionated twat.

Thank you, Hound. I am happy to tell you that my visitor stats are healthier than ever: in fact, this is my first month with over 20,000 hits and more than 15,000 unique visits. Besides, what makes you think that I write this blog for the benefit of anyone else? Believe me, no one is more surprised that I at my nascent popularity. So, with all due respect, go fuck yourself.

Toodle pip!

P.S. You aren't David Miliband, are you?

Prizes for all

Via this week's Britblog Roundup, I find Diamond Geezer; the cited post is most amusing (and very true; when I was travelling regularly I contemplated many times holding a member of Scotrail's staff hostage until they turned off the fucking announcements) but, whilst scrolling down, I encountered the last day of term post.
Special thanks to Ms Jenkinson for organising our very first non-competitive Sports Day, so there'll be egg-and-spoon certificates for absolutely everybody, even those of you who are too obese to run.

This sounds utterly ridiculous but, and I shit you not, it was the last straw for my parents and they removed me from the state school that I was at. They had already been disatisfied with the progress I was making (too clever, large classes and extraordinarily bored. God, I was so fucking bored, bored, bored, bored. And when I get bored I get depressed) but that last sports day was the nail in the coffin.

Yes, aged 8, I participated in a state school Sports Day in which no one was allowed to "win" any of the races. Every person who competed got a prize, and the same prize, irrespective of where they had come in a race. Remember, children, no one is better than anybody else.

Dear god, some teachers—in fact, one can only conclude from the hideous illiteracy statistics, a great many of them—are despicable pieces of humanity...

Animal's right to suck my cock

Via Right For Scotland, I watched the Newsnight debate on animal testing this morning, and I am mildly stunned by the levels of ignorance on display. RFS sums up the programme pretty well, frankly.
Esler then asked Swampy if it was always wrong to harm animals for the good of humanity. Swampy said yes. Swampy is a bit thick, even in my sleep-deprived state I could see the follow up question coming bedecked in neon flashing lights and carrying a football rattle. “Would you experiment on a mosquito to cure malaria?” Yet more diving. Follow up two: “would you swat a malarial mosquito on your arm to protect yourself?” Olympic standard diving ensured yet no answer of any merit passed his lips.

Actually, what Swampy said was that he wouldn't swat a malarial mosquito on his arm which I think shows a level of selflessness that we can all admire. I, for one, would be happy to spend public money to send this stupid little fucker to Africa to test his answer, frankly. Oh, and since he patently isn't employed, can we at least stop paying his benefits so that he has to work rather than stand around intimidating people who are trying to make our lives a little better?
The one [Dr Aziz's] patients who was in the audience was asked to comment on the benefits his animal-researched treatment has given him. He provided a stark demonstration by turning off his machine that suppresses the Parkinsons he suffers from. After violently shaking and unable to finish his sentence Gavin Esler (for he was in the chair) asked Swampy to look the man in the eye and tell him that he should not have gotten that treatment because it is “unethical” to test on animals. Swampy evaded, ducked and dived but refused to answer the question.

Swampy, essentially, couldn't. It was an absolutely tragic event. As you may know, I have looked after Parkinson's patients but, given that we weren't in the habit of withholding their drugs, I had never before seen a full-on attack. It was awful. With his machine switched on, Mike was able to talk clearly and lucidly and had no symptoms at all. Once he switched the machine off, the tremors were instant and increasingly violent until, as RFS said, he couldn't actually speak. The deep brain implant that he had been given was a direct result of primate-testing; the brain site which the implant was stimulating was not associated with Parkinson's until research had been done on primates.

But by far the stupidest bunch of bastards were those claiming that there was some alternative to animal testing1. They ranged from total fuckwits who funded "alternatives" to a fucking director of an "alternatives" company who, it was claimed, would have been able to predict the awful side-effects that afflicted those six men recently (how the fuck he would know that having never actually had the formula for the drug, fuck knows). Let me point out what the "alternatives" are.

The first is by using tissue samples. Unfortunately, tissue samples are not a complete system; how many different types of tissue are there in the body? How many tests would you have to do? And how do you test a combinant effect, to mimic the way in which tissues act together in the body? The answer is, of course, that you can't.

The second is computer modelling, one of those things that Swampy appeared to be in favour of (well, he didn't actually tell us what the "alternatives" are, but he kept talking—in his awful, common accent—about "technology"). Well, since we actually know so little about the workings of the human body, they are a little difficult to model accurately (after all, if we knew how everything worked, then we wouldn't need testing in the first lace, would we now?). Besides, Squander Two has already written most eloquently—and from a position of authority—on the inaccuracies of computer modelling.

The third and part of the first is, oh ho ho, of course, by using embryos. Amusingly, what wasn't mentioned in the programme was how many of these "alternative" tissue samples are made. The easiest way is to get a small sample of, say, human liver (just a few cells worth) and then to coat it in stem cells; these will then become liver cells and you can start to build up a decent sample. And we all know where stem cells come from, don't we?

So, what the animal rights people are really talking about is using human embryos rather than live animals. Oooh, I would pay good money to see the animal rights loons face off against the pro-life nutjobs! Although I would want to be behind some kind of protective screen when it happened...
An audience member [in fact the Director of the Association of Medical Charities—DK] on the side of common sense then rounded off the kicking the animal lovers were taking by pointing out the contradiction above:

“We should not experiment on animals because they are too much like us and suffer but if that argument does not convince you then how about the fact that animals are nothing like us and the data is useless”.

Although, it must be admitted, a slight straw man, it was a delicious moment and gained a round of applause.

Put simply, the animal rights view was argued vociferously and bitterly by a bunch of ignorant lay-people—many of them activists with criminal records for arson, "economic terrorism", breaking and entering2, and personal intimidation—with fuck-all scientific grounding; the case for was put by calm, well-informed people with a wealth of scientific knowledge and actual participation in research who all regretted that animals had to be used but were nevertheless adamant that it was, currently, the only way to procede. And I agree; why not visit Pro-Test (the founder of which was also on the programme and spoke very eloquently) and sign the petition, eh?

Of course, the really insidious thing about Swampy's argument was that he was saying that now we have better methods; this meant, unfortunately, that Esler could not use the old "so you would accept no medical treatment if you were ill line": Swampy would simply have said that it was necessary in the past to test on animals so he could reap the benefits of that research. What a fucking ignorant baldy cunt he was but, like many very stupid people, he seemed to have been endowed with that particularly loathesome low, animal cunning which distinguishes the true shit.

I wouldn't piss on him and his type if they were on fire. I might do some tests on them though, to see if we could improve treatment for burns victims...

  1. Of course, under EU law it is required that all drugs be tested on animals before being given to humans, so maybe the protesters should go to Brussels and start yelling at that Commission day and night and firebomb their houses. I might almost support that... Except that they wouldn't of course, because the likes of Swampy, whose name was Mel, and another fuckwit named Keith Mann, wouldn't get their benefits then, would they. They would have to spend their time working rather than shouting abuse at people.

  2. The delightful Mr Keith Mann, who did not regret his three convictions for "economic terrorism", said that cosmetics testing was still going on in this country. His last conviction was for breaking into a lab to find that scientists were injecting Botox into the digestive spaces of mice. Mr Mann, whose tabloid reading skills are obviously far more well-developed than his scientific knowledge, is aware that ridiculous film stars inject botulinus toxin into their faces and thus has interpreted that as being the only application. Mr Mann is obviously unable to see any other application for the most poisonous naturally occuring substance in the world. Personally, given that it is a nerve toxin, I can think of several (that don't include injecting the stuff into the viens of those fuckers who dig up the bodies of grandmothers or attack Huntingdon Life Sciences directors with baseball bats, worthy though that application might be.

Sunday, July 30, 2006

Good god, it seems that blogging really has arrived because finally the luvvie community has caught on.
... all the material used to in the play is 100% real… You never really know someone until you've seen their diary.

Naturally, the play's organisers will have contacted the author of every blog post that they use and sought the appropriate permissions, eh? Because anything else would be a totally inappropriate breach of copyright, especially for those in the arts industry.

Unless, of course, the participants have simply written a load of old arse on their own blogs and are using that. Although, of course, that would hardly be in the spirit of the thing, eh?

Saturday, July 29, 2006

Fringe 2006

Well it must be time for the Edinburgh Festival Fringe again. How do I know?—is it the legions of tourists who are beginning to flood the city? Or maybe the ludicrous increase in travel prices? No, it's because festbitch is back up and running and providing sarky commentry on the Biggest corporate/luvvie whorefest Festival in the world!TM

Indeed, as The Golden Baboon has noted, right from the get-go the punters have been lashing into all of that lovely new theatre!
Jolly Fringe Maestro Paul Gudgin supposedly commented, "thousands of people are getting hold of tickets for all their favourite shows early", and the top ten certainly bears witness to that:
  1. Danny Bhoy

  2. Jason Byrne

  3. Ed Byrne Standing Up and Falling

  4. Rich Hall

  5. Adam Hills

  6. Bill Bailey

  7. Paul Merton's Impro Chums

  8. Soweto Gospel Choir

  9. Lady Boys of Bangkok

  10. = Jim Henson's (ADULTS) Puppet Improv

  11. = Jump

It's good to see so many unknowns in there: it's about time that William Bailey got a break, he's been on the pub circuit for years - perhaps this could be the Fringe when he gets the chance to go mainstream? And Paul Merton? Well, I've heard of him but I doubt if the average man-in-the-street has.

And such a broad range! From stand-up to comedy to (adult) puppet improv to comedy to stand-up to ladyboys. festbitch applauds the public's willingness to take a risk with their Fringe experience: long may it continue!

Your humble Devil notes that William Bailey is a very nice person to have a drink or four with, but he does hope that Paul Merton's Impro chums are rather better at improv that Master Merton is. And as long as Alan Davies isn't in town, that's just fine and dandy.

It seems, too, that festbitch will be carrying on their long-running feud with The Underbelly, pointing out that the venue (which only started some five or six years ago) is shafting companies rather more than some.
However, festbitch is sure that the Underbelly management will be ordering the press and box office to support all shows equally, regardless of how much extra cash they've stumped up: to suggest anything else would be scandalous. Most of all, festbitch would like to congratulate the Underbelly on the enormous pile of cash on which they must sleep at night: we salute you for truly understanding the spirit of the Fringe.

The boys and girls have started strongly: it is good to see the feed active in my RSS reader once more...

Your Ligging Devil has done a deal with his old friends at Three Weeks which should ensure that he gains entry to a party or two, so I shall try to bring you should gossip (when sober). Three Weeks, as I was, have upped their print run to 30,000 a week this year, an increase of 10,000, and are bolstering their online presence with podcasts and are broadcasting live on Festival FM (87.7 FM) from 11am–1pm every day of the Festival.

Personally, I am really looking forward to Kandisky's Radio: as you may know, I worked on last year's big hit, Enola (which is still one of the best pieces of theatre that I have ever seen), and this new show is written by the same man, Al Smith. Al won the Sunday Times New Writing Award in March and he's a good guy to boot. Go see the show (and read the blog): I'm confident that it won't be money wasted.

Also good for a punt, and exploring the world of blog, are more of your humble Devil's friends: The Penny Dreadfuls. They are most amusing: go and see them too...

Ah, well, another year, another load of cash shovelled straight up my nose; it's not quite here yet, but it's coming, oh yes, it's coming...

Egging them on...

Ruth Kelly: hypocrite and egg-targetThe Gorse Fox points out that Ruth Kelly, as well as being a fucking lunatic who believes in her great big buddy in the sky, is a stinking hypocrite with all of the integrity of a particularly evil and devious weasel.
So, Ruth Kelly is a real champion of local democracy and fights for the local community against bad developments. Right?

Yeah, right!

In an act of breathtaking hypocrisy, she is now threatening to withold government money from councils who fail to build the houses she wants. This will push up council tax for the local residents. This is the government trying to blackmail and bully local councils in the south and ensure that local planning committees comply with the will of the soviet government. This is RK's attempt to root out objections to large scale development in an area that has too little water, transport, and space (and probably doesn't vote labour anyway, so won't cost them votes).

Interesting how this ignores the advice of the governments own (non-democratic) quango the South East Regional Assembly. the Gorse Fox cannot adequately articulate the contempt he holds for this self-serving, soviet regime that was placed in power by a minority of the deluded, intellectually challenged, or naive electorate of this country.

I would suggest that we pelt her with eggs, but unfortunately someone else has already done so.

Does anyone have a couple of half-bricks handy...?

Friday, July 28, 2006

Toynbee gagged...

... but not, alas, universally. Via Timmy, it seems that poor old Polly has been sneakily writing columns that she shouldn't.
The Guardian has stopped star columnist Polly Toynbee writing for a charities and voluntary sector magazine, fearing competition for readers and advertisers.

For fuck's sake, Polly is a "star" columnist! The MSM must be really short of opinion piece writers if Polly Toynbee is a star columnist. She doesn't understand economics, she flagrantly falsifies her figures, she always contradicts herself at least once in every column and she engenders a near homicidal rage in many of those who read her postage stamp jottings.

But, she's a star columnist. Fucking hell.
Guardian editor Alan Rusbridger himself intervened after staffer Toynbee failed to ask permission to write her column for Haymarket charities and voluntary sector weekly, Third Sector, which started last week.

Rusbridger said that the rule was staff should not contribute to titles that compete for readers or advertisers.

Bloody hell, The Grauniad must really be feeling the pinch; bad annual figures coming up?
Third Sector editor Stephen Cook said: "I'm disappointed, particularly for our readers — people are very defensive about their own territories these days.

Don't be: you've just saved your readers literally minutes of coronary-inducing fury as they find themselves reading—out of some terrible compulsion—Polly's latest dribblings.
"We always thought ourselves complementary to The Guardian because as a daily newspaper they can always beat us on news. Also they are more public sector- oriented than we are."

Had on a quick second; the editor of a magazine for charities thinks that The Groan is more public-sector oriented? Hahahaha.

Anyway, as Timmy says, is Polly on her uppers? Perhaps she needs a new kitchen...

Wednesday, July 26, 2006

Amusing search term of the day: Polly Toynbee ate my hamster...

I never knew that Polly was a Freddie Starr fan...

Fraud and corruption: but where?

A source who wishes to remain anonymous—gosh, it's sounding like Guido's Place here, eh?—sends me this essay on the subject of Beeb's new "evidence" into an old police investigation.

Tonight (Wednesday 26th of July 2006) the BBC will broadcast a program reviewing the Stephen Lawrence inquiry and the fall out from it via the Macpherson report.

Lawrence was killed by a gang of men who according to eyewitnesses were all white. No one ever went to jail for the killing and an attempted private prosecution collapsed due to lack of evidence. The Government of the day commissioned Sir William Macpherson to write up the report into the case and to investigate alleged shortcomings in the investigation.

The program tonight, as trailed in the BBC as advertising masquerading as news, will make a specific allegation relating to one Det. Sgt. John Davidson.

They allege that Davidson was corrupt and that he was engaged in active protection of a particular family who’s son was a suspect. Their source for this allegation is convicted corrupt police officer Neil Putnam who served with Davidson following the inquiry.

Of course what the BBC in their web reporting today (it remains to be seen what will be broadcast later) fail to include that if allegations were Gordon Ramsey cuisine this would be lightly flogged Shergar served on a bed of toasted barrel shavings.

Davidson was arrested 1998 and his home raided in relation to corruption allegations. Subsequent to that, Putnam then named him in a corruption inquiry. This is, of course, all post-dating the Macpherson report where a chapter dedicated to him came to the conclusion that:
We are not convinced that DS Davidson positively tried to thwart the effectiveness of the investigation. It was he who took the statement from Stacey Benefield which effectively launched the prosecution of David Norris and Neil Acourt in respect of that gross stabbing of March 1993. He was in charge of the protection of the witnesses leading up to the trial of David Norris at the Central Criminal Court. That prosecution failed for reasons which cannot be attributed to any activity of DS Davidson. There is also no evidence that DS Davidson held back positively in respect of the lines of investigation which he followed in order to favour David Norris or indeed any of the other suspects.

DS Davidson was simply not the right officer to apply tact and sensitivity in his approach. This should have been known and recognised by his senior officers who deployed him as well as by himself. Our clear impression of DS Davidson was of a strong, self-opinionated character who would be inclined to seek to dominate witnesses in order to obtain information rather than solicit it in a more sensitive and sophisticated way. We are critical of both DS Davidson himself and his senior officers for the manner in which witnesses were approached and the failure to recognise the need to take steps to implement more sensitive methods. [sections 19:40 and 19:42]

So rather than “looking out” and protecting the Norris family the Macpherson report noted that it was Davidson who processed the necessary witnesses that kicked off the charging process against the Norris boy.

The BBC goes on to note that Davidson was criticised for his abrupt manner. As pointed out in the extracts above he would be more accurately described as a detective of the old school.

Davidson learned his craft on the streets of Glasgow and took that experience with him when he moved south. The witnesses that were interviewed in the course of the murder enquiry were not regulars at choir practice and would have been hesitant to tell the police anything, either because they disliked the police or because they were afraid to testify against children of bad families. Davidson had to lean on witnesses to stand any chance of furthering the investigation. A process that produced the results with which his colleagues were able to charge a man he was alleged to be protecting from police intervention.

However there is something a little deeper to this than mere witness bashing. Davidson and a lot of the rest of the investigation team refused to give into public hysteria.

From the start the police made the decision that the crime, while without concrete evidence against suspects who had been named in anonymous phone calls, would not be treated as a racist murder. In evidence to the inquiry Davidson made an interesting point to Michael Mansfield QC:
Mansfield: I just wondered if it occurred to you that it was a race attack?

Davidson: I do not think in my own mind this was a racist attack. I believe this was thugs attacking anyone, as they had done on previous occasions with other white lads.

Mansfield: During the Dobson interview, you made it clear that you personally did not think this was a race attack, did you not?

Davidson: By that time I didn't, no, sir.

Mansfield: That is your view today, is it not?

Davidson: It is, sir.

Mansfield: I do not want to debate with you about the nature of racism, but do you recognise that thugs who may kill white people for a variety of reasons, but who kill blacks because they are blacks, are committing a racial crime?

Davidson: Yes, sir, I recognise that if they were killed because they were black, that is racist.

Mansfield: That is exactly what this case was about but you refused to recognise it, did you not?

Davidson: I still refuse to recognise it, sir. I am very surprised that anybody knows it is about that, because it has never been cleared up anyway, sir.

As an experienced police officer he had the savvy to recognise that until there was a conviction on solid evidence there was no way to determine if race had motivated the attack. He was also experienced enough to recognise that the investigation into the crime should and was separate from any allegations of racism. If the murder was from the outset clearly racist then how would the investigation have been different?

Davidson correctly identified that this gang attacked people indiscriminately and for that reason alone the tag of “racist” that the press sought to attach to the crime almost immediately was inappropriate at that time. Indeed in November 2004 a white man was kicked to death by three Pakistani asian men who went on to boast about killing a white man. On sentencing the judge decided that despite the racially identifying language used to describe the attack there was no racist motivation due to the fact that the gang had attacked people of their own ethnic demographic previous to that incident. In the Lawrence case is it not a good thing that time served experienced detectives like Davidson ignored the passion and mud slinging in the press and got on with investigating a crime?

In a move that seems to smack of prejudicing a possible investigation Asst. Commissioner John Yates was quoted as saying that in his mind, given the evidence that he has seen he has no doubt that Davidson was corrupt.

Yates, the man who is currently investigating the Levy “cash for honours” scandal; botched the prosecution of Paul Burrell and who botched the Ingram millionaire fraud prosecution, may wish to refer to ancient right of being innocent until proven guilty. After all he was the man who, in 2000, said “we operate not on a sort of hunch or suspicion, we operate on evidential rules”. Indeed Davidson is way beyond simply innocent until his day in court.

The allegation against Davidson is not new; Putnam’s allegation against him was made a long time ago. Davidson has faced these allegations repeatedly and each time he has beaten the charges. This is beyond assuming he is innocent. This is three separate enquiries testing this innocence and coming to the conclusion that while his methods during the murder investigation may have not been as sufficiently touchy-feely as the new cuddly Met would have liked, he was not corrupt. Indeed the only evidence against him boils down to the unsubstantiated word of a confessed corrupt police officer who served 3 years in prison for being bent. Added to that that Putnam’s evidence was enough to prosecute and jail another handful of police officers and you have to ask why this mud just will not stick to Davidson.

I mean, the allegation is that subsequent to the investigation Davidson started to tell almost complete strangers that he was on the take. That he was “looking after” the Norris family when it was his paperwork and interviews that led to the Norris boy being charged and that he was alleged to have lifted a substantial quantity of drugs from a dealers car, sold it himself and then passed the proceeds round. Yet it is still only this corrupt officers word. Only former police officer and convicted criminal Putnam is pushing this story. Could it be that the motivation has more of “keeping the wolf from the door” than it has to do with rooting out corruption? Putman has certainly appeared on enough BBC productions discussing his crimes.

But the final nail in the allegation has to be the fact that it is established that Davidson became close to Putman, even going so far as to attend the christening of one of Putman’s children that he now has to feed and clothe with poor employment prospects.

I can think of two separate occasions where I have had to terminate close relationships (including one with a girlfriend) when the other person was exposed as unsavoury. For one of them (not the girl) I was then the subject of a malicious complaint to the police. These kinds of things rarely end well and I would imagine that when Putman was exposed as a grafter a lot of his colleagues would have shunned him. If he thought that at least Davidson would stand by him would it not stand to reason that this would upset him? Maybe to the point of making allegations in an attempt to “punish” his former friend?

For the BBC to repeat these 10 year old allegations as new evidence in an attempt to boost ratings for a program that features a talking head that is wheeled out every time Auntie wants to bash the Met is a gross abuse of the licence fee.

This program will simply seek to sling more mud at Davidson and hurt his family while adding nothing to the debate surrounding the killing. This is cynical programming at its worst and we should be ashamed that our national broadcaster has such low journalistic standards.

Israel and MatGB

A quick reply to MatGB who left a comment on my previous Israel/Lebanon post.
I think, in many ways, you're correct. In others though, aspects of Israel's behaviour (specifically targetting known civilian convoys and Red Cross vehicles) are reprehensible.

Hizbullah are scum, and in no way can they or should they be supported (STWC is now completely hijacked by the Galloway brigade, didn't have much time for them before but after his speech at the weekend?). But deliberate attacks on civilians fleeing the area as instructed cause me to lose sympathy.

Accidentaly damage, collateral, etc? Shit happens. Deliberate attacks by, as you and MrE rightly state, has a well defined command structure accountable to a democratically elected executive?

I admit that I have not really been following things particularly closely; as I said (although, admittedly, I removed it) I have been almost constantly drunk for the last week or so, and haven't been paying attention.

There are two... well... three parts to this problem. The first is that, as the P-G pointed out, Hezbollah effectively look like civilians and most certainly hide amongst them.

The second part is in the reporting; every day for the last week or so, The Guardian, to name but one, has exclusively carried pictures of "devastated" Lebanon. Their bias is to report in a way that reinforces their own prejudices; after the sale of the Telegraph group, there is no paper that is now pro-Israeli.

The third problem is that I doubt very much that the reporters are there on the scene; they are simply relaying what they have heard.

So, these convoys may well be civilians, or they may be Hezbollah militants dressed as civilians or they may be mainly Hebollah people but with some coerced (or willing) civilians travelling with them. Nothing else of recent vintage has so convinced me of the astonishing lack of trust that we can have in reportage. Let us not forget that Galloway is a contributor to Comment Is Free and then we must assume some sympathy with his views (which I consider equal to, or worse than, those of the BNP. In practical reality, in fact, there is little difference).

But I will say this: I do not believe that the Israelis are deliberately targeting either civilian or Red Cross convoys. If you can show me some absolute evidence that this is the case, then fair enough. I do know that they are making it difficult for people to leave because they have blown all of the bridges but, notwithstanding my earlier apology to qwan, the Lebanese government would have done well to at least attempt to obey the UN resolution to disarm Hezbollah.

If you believe Douglas Davies*—and, given my comment on reporting above, I stress the "if"—then the Lebanese government have certainly not been hampering the arming of Hezbollah.
The Iranian consignment was transported in a military convoy through Syria and along Lebanon’s Bekaa Valley to Hezbollah bases in south Lebanon. The convoy had received an official transit permit from the Lebanese government, which knew not only the precise nature of the shipment but also its destination.

The sources say the consignment included some 12,000 Katyusha rockets, as well as various other types of missiles.

This would not surprise me; I do not think that the Lebanese government are particularly supportive of Hezbollah, but the terrorists have, as has been pointed out, some very powerful friends (one of whom effectively occupied the country until a little while ago) and I do not believe that the Lebanese were given much choice. This is why, as Michael Young reported*, the Lebanese are certainly not anti-Israel in this matter. All that they see is the continued presence—invaders? squatters?—of an extremely heavily armed and ruthless group of people who are backed by more firepower and experience than the Lebanese have.
Loose cannons and rogue elements? Too many documented cases, no investigations.

Links please, Mat. And how long do you think an investigation takes?
Hizbullah need to be taken from the equation. I'm not at all sure this is the right way of doing it, and I'm pretty sure that Israel is damaging its long term needs by its actions.

Mat, that's all very well but how would you do it? The Lebanese were either unwilling or, as I said above, incapable of removing or neutralising Hezbollah so what would you do? The Herald reports nearly 1100 rockets fired into Israel and half of the population of Haifa, 250,000, having fled. Hezbollah are backed by one the biggest economies and military powers in the area and whom no one wishes to antagonise more than they have to; mainly because we still require their oil.

This situation needs to change obviously but, from the information that I have, I estimate that it will take us a minimum of twenty years to do so. We cannot afford to destroy the oil supply now, especially as there is a good chance that the whole of OPEC would bring their influence to bear, i.e. as I have said before, any attack on Iran would engender supporting action, whether covert or overt, from the other Muslim countries. So, what do you do?
I just can't see any "good guys" in this, it's just "not-so-bad guys".

Quite. So, if we are to take any kind of action, then we go for "the most expedient guys". Which is why we are taking no action.

We, by which I mean Britain and the US, guarantee Israel's right to survive; on the other hand, because of the oil situation, we simply cannot afford to even attempt pressure on Iran. We have been trying to do so, over their nuclear programme, and got nowhere. Do you think that Iran don't know precisely what they are doing and precisely how far they can push? They do; their people have been running—unopposed and undiluted by regime change—foreign policy for a quarter of a century. "Our" people have not.
The really scary thing is the reaction of the "Religious Right" in the US; the end times are coming, the Rapture approaches, etc. Fucking scary shit on some of their sites at the moment.

The ranting of a few religious nutjobs are of no consequence. Whatever you think of Bush, he is not a religious nutjob. When he arrived at the G8 Summit in Scotland last year he said, "I will not do anything to harm the US economy". There is no reason to think that this attitude, or those of his advisors, has changed. The "Religious Right" are of precisely no consequence to the path of geopolitics; the kind of people who get elected to run the world's hyperpower are far too pragmatic. They may do silly things for many reasons, but religion is not one of them.

The question then is, what is to be done? The Israelis will not rest until they have destroyed Hezbollah, or at least destroyed their offensive capability for some time. This latter option seems more likely; Israel cannot sustain a long war (mainly because, with reservists, i.e. every Israeli citizen, called up the economy would grind to a halt within a very short time. Hence the fact that the open wars that Israel has conducted have tended to be extraordinarily short).

Negotiating with the Lebanese government is pointless; the Lebanese, as I said, either will not or cannot disarm Hezbollah. Therefore, from the Israeli point of view, there is absolutely no point in negotiating with the government (especially if, as Michael Young reports, there is tacit support from the government for the Israeli "intervention"). Besides, the government have no power to force Hezbollah to return the two kidnapped soldiers, the absolute minimum condition for a ceasefire; and this is, of course, assuming that the two are still alive.

Some kind of UN intervention? Hmmm, they haven't been terribly effective; the UN's high-profile failures in theatres around the world—including, but not limited to, Rwanda and the Balkans—does not inspire confidence. Besides, their failure to ensure that Lebanon abided by the resolution to disarm Hezbollah (or, indeed, it's failure to enforce resolutions on Israel, the Arab states and Saddam Hussein at various different times) has highlighted the toothlessness of the UN.

It's a tricky one. Myself? Well, I'm safe and warm away from all of the danger and am tempted to let it work itself out. However, if I were the Lebanese government, I would contact Israeli Intelligence and try to gain their trust. I would then, delivering the times of contruction to them, use the army sappers to extemporise bridges, etc. to allow for the movement of civilians away from the bombing runs. I would also ensure that the army checked and disarmed every single convoy or traveller passing over those bridges. This would serve a double purpose; it would convince Israel of good intentions (and why not have Israeli intelligence officers dressed as Lebanese army with the roadblocks? Even if someone suspects that they are Israeli, they will be unable to prove it) and would also help to scatter and remove the Hezbollah operatives.

It is certain that Hezbollah will be unable to operate so well for some time after the Israeli strikes and, as some Lebanese politicians have realised, this could be good news for the Lebanon in many ways; not least in that Israel are unlikely to bomb the shit out of their infrastucture again in the near future.

What I do expect to see is more bombings and Hezbollah terrorist attacks against US, British and Israeli targets across the rest of the world. The Jews have already strengthened security in their official outposts outside Israel, and American security is pretty rigourous too. The British, if they have not done so, need to do the same.

Most of the writers at The Speccie seem to believe that we in the West are going to end up in a war with the more militant Islamic countries; I, as you know, tend to agree. Our main tactic should be to concentrate all of our efforts on two things: finding alternative power sources to oil, and delaying the (I believe, inevitable) war until we have been able to switch to these alternative sources. We should also build bridges with as many non-OPEC oil producing countries as possible, i.e. South America and Russia, since we are always going to be reliant on some oil (for making plastics, etc.).

That's my assessment of the situation: take it as you like.

* These articles can be read through the free registration at The Spectator website: I recommend them, and most of the others. Apart from Douglas Hurd's; you'll be knawing your own arms off at his tedious and patrician writing; he is a total cunt, originator of the phrase, "a level killing field" in relation to the Balkan War, and his writing sends me into an absolute fury. You have been warned.

Tuesday, July 25, 2006


No, not more Miliband. I can only echo Right For Scotland's response: what the fuck is this about?
Channel 4 is to bring mass public masturbation to the small screen.

The broadcaster - once led by Michael Grade, dubbed "pornographer in chief" by the Daily Mail - has commissioned a documentary about the UK's first "masturbate-a-thon" as part of a series of programmes dubbed "Wank week", can reveal.

In what must surely be one of the summer's more bizarre events, hundreds of people are expected to gather in a hall in central London on August 5 to pleasure themselves in aid of charity.

In the name of all that is unholy, is nothing sacred? Or, even, beyond the bounds of taste and decency?

If I want a couple to watch me wank, I'll hire a couple of fucking hookers or something; at least there might be something more interesting to do after the wangst has worn off. And, more importantly, my face won't be broadcast in the midst of the vinegar strokes. I mean, what kind of self-loathing would make you want to participate in this stunt? And I thought that Big Brother was bad.

Wank-a-dog logoAnd just look at this logo; is it just me, or is that a dog's hind legs? Is this the natural extension of growing an ear on a mouse's back: growing a massive cock on the front of a dog? Or are they perhaps suggesting that you might like to try masturbating Fido from time to time: at the Wank-a-thon maybe?
The organiser of the event, the San Francisco-based Centre for Sex and Culture, has run mass masturbation events in the US for the past five years to raise money for safe sex groups and plans to replicate the formula in the UK.

Cameras from independent production company Zig Zag, which made Essex Boys for ITV1, will follow the organisers and participants for a 60-minute film, which has the working title of Wank-a-thon. It is expected to air on Channel 4 towards the end of the year.

The event will encourage Londoners - both male and female - to sign up sponsors and head to Clerkenwell in order to masturbate in front of hundreds of others.

What? I mean, for fuck's sake...
Zig Zag said in its blurb for the show: "This year it's time to bring the event across the pond to see if the great British public can embrace mass public masturbation. It's time to find out if the only things allowed to be stiff in Britain are upper lips."

Prizes will be on offer for those who clock up the most orgasms and those who can masturbate the longest - the current record, according to the organisers, is a chafing eight-and-a-half hours.

Eight and a half hours? Was it Sting indulging in some Tantric tossing?
To qualify for the record, the organisers say "at least 55 minutes of every hour shall be spent self-pleasuring by manual or sex toy stimulation" with participants getting just five minutes to "replenish and renew".

Yeah, I can't help thinking that this is an event in which women will find that they have an advantage. Which will be nice for them.
Two other programmes will also air as part of the week, which has been commissioned by the Channel 4 factual entertainment commissioning editor, Andrew MacKenzie.

"Following on from the success of 'Penis week', we feel this is exactly the type of provocative and mischievous programming that Channel 4 should be covering in the 11pm slot. Masturbation is something many people do but not many people talk about," Mr MacKenzie told

Yeah, there's a reason for that, MacKenzie, and it's this: imagine... ooh... Charles Clarke, bent almost double, his fat face screwed up in an expression of agony as he pulls and tugs at his stubby, little cock; his fat, hariy arse waving in the air and his little, brown bumhole clenching with the effort of his fortieth wank.

Provocative? Mischievous? I think that you mean repulsive and unclean...

Miliband video

Many thanks to our old friend, Master Guido Fawkes, for this little cameraphone video clip of David Miliband quoting The Kitchen.

Sadly (but not surprisingly), the sound quality is not the best but I think that the phrases "fucking nutcase" and "batshit mad" are gratifyingly audible. So, David: you go, girl!

Of course, you do know that this means that the gloves are off...

UPDATE: A very warm welcome to Guido's readers; should you be interested, you can find the post that Master Miliband quoted from here. You will note that Master Miliband quotes only the sentences that make me appear like the frothing loon that I so evidently am and conveniently misses out any references to the word "totalitarian" or, indeed, my link to the rather more measured—but considerably more devastating—Register article. He also misses the fact, in his effort to ensure that I look as close to an evil, going-behind-his-back nutjob, that I posted a comment on his blog saying effectively the same thing. I am sure that all of this was due to pressures of time.

And is it just me, but doesn't he speak exactly like Our Dear Leader...?

Bloody students

Apparently, the repayment of student loans is becoming a problem for some.
Debt collectors are clawing back more than £100,000 a month from Scottish graduates.

The amount of money gathered in Scotland on behalf of the Student Loans Company (SLC) reached £1.26m last year.

The total amount collected from graduates who have defaulted on their repayment commitments since 2001 now stands at more than £5.3m.

This is, of course, unfortunate, but surely the students knew the terms when they took out the loans?
Fiona Hyslop, education spokeswoman for the SNP, said yesterday that it was "entirely unacceptable" for students to be burdened with debts as the price of education.

"The student loans system is financially crippling graduates and has a damaging effect on a their life chances," she said.

Umm, but I thought that the whole point was that graduates earn more because they are more highly qualified; isn't that the justification for the loans? Or can it possibly be that a degree will not earn you much more than anyone else (especially when it's a degree in Spice Girl Studies), partially because the more people have one, the less a degree will be worth? Inflation, y'see. Market forces and all that lark.

More cataloguing madness

For fuck's sake, they really don't stop trying, do they? This time the excuse for trying to catalogue everybody in Britain is this:
Identification should not have been a problem, but due to the lack of a missing persons DNA database against which to check such samples, forensics experts warn it is almost impossible to match a decomposed body with someone who has disappeared. Currently even once a DNA sample has been taken it can only be checked against the criminal records database of those who have committed a crime.

The tenor of the online article is somewhat different to the one which appeared on the front page of The Herald yesterday, which very definately called for a national DNA database.

Why won't these fucking doctors—in this case it is one Dr Tim Clayton, of the Forensic Science Service—shut the fuck up? Seriously, guys, I'm sorry that you have about 300 unidentified bodies washed up every year, but that's tough: you aren't going to catalogue my DNA for your convenience.

Have you got the message yet?

OK, then, Israel and Lebanon

I have been a little overwhelmed by the whole Israel versus Hezbollah story and I am pretty surprised at people's negative reaction to Israel's retaliation. Well, actually, I'm not at all surprised that the usual barking moonbats have been attacking them. Due to a spate of work combined with some heavy drinking and a real lack of energy, I have not really been following the news, or blogs, for the last few days bar a glance or two at Cloisters Bar's newspapers.

I am most amused at the accusations of war-crimes being bandied about, as has the Pedant-General who has written an excellent post about this, making reference to the Geneva Convention.
7. The presence or movements of the civilian population or individual civilians shall not be used to render certain points or areas immune from military operations, in particular in attempts to shield military objectives from attacks or to shield, favour or impede military operations. The Parties to the conflict shall not direct the movement of the civilian population or individual civilians in order to attempt to shield military objectives from attacks or to shield military operations.

Translation: if combatants of Party A set up in the middle of a village, are subsequently attacked by Party B and civilians die, PARTY A has contravened the protocol and is responsible for the death of those civilians. Military targets are always military targets. It is up to the combatants on each side to ensure that they do not put the civilians around them in danger.

As the P-G points out at length and with consummate clarity, if you are looking to sling about accusations of war crimes, then it is not to the IDF that one should direct one's ire.
If we are going to start slinging about accusations of war crimes, do we look for a party that:
  • deliberately locates its command centres, combatants and munitions in densely populated civilian areas;

  • refuses to use uniforms and insignia and generally tries to be indistinguishable from the civilian population;

  • launches wildly inaccurate weaponry over long distances into civilian population centres

  • without warning

Or one that:
  • separates itself from its civilian population by insignia, uniforms and location;

  • has a well defined command structure accountable to a democratically elected executive;

  • issues radio and text message warnings and carries out leaflet drops

  • and aborts missions at the last moment if no target can be identified?

Not a very tough choice really.

Precisely. And, according to Michael Young, writing for The Spectator from Beirut (where he has been resident for some time), the Lebanese also understand this. [Emphasis mine—DK]
The Lebanese people have watched as Hezbollah has built up a heavily armed state-within-a-state that has now carried the country into a devastating conflict it cannot win and many are fed up. Sunni Muslims, Christians and the Druze have no desire to pay for the martial vanity of the Hezbollah leader, Hassan Nasrallah. Nor will they take kindly to his transforming the devastation into a political victory.

Some even welcome Israel’s intervention. As one Lebanese politician said to me in private (but would never dare say in public) Israel must not stop now. It sounds cynical, he said, but ‘for things to get better in Lebanon, Nasrallah must be weakened further’.

Even some Shiites are beginning to have doubts about Nasrallah. If interviewed on television they will praise Hezbollah, but when the cameras are off, there are those who will suddenly become more critical. Many have had to flee, leaving behind their homes and possessions with no hope of recovering anything of any worth.

Elsewhere in that magazine, the last issue of which carried a number of articles on the subject, Douglas Davies is of the view that Hezbollah's initial attack was very far from being merely opportunistic.
In fact, the operation had probably been on the drawing board for several months. According to intelligence sources, a major weapons consignment destined for Hezbollah arrived at Damascus airport from Iran in March. That was just one month after Iran had ended its voluntary co-operation with the International Atomic Energy Agency (IAEA), which included surprise inspections of Iran’s nuclear facilities.

The Iranian consignment was transported in a military convoy through Syria and along Lebanon’s Bekaa Valley to Hezbollah bases in south Lebanon. The convoy had received an official transit permit from the Lebanese government, which knew not only the precise nature of the shipment but also its destination.

The sources say the consignment included some 12,000 Katyusha rockets, as well as various other types of missiles. Of particular concern to Israel’s military strategists was the fact that the range of the new rockets had been substantially extended. They were capable of reaching Israel’s main port city of Haifa, possibly well beyond.

We are all aware that Hezbollah is an Iranian proxy, but why should this have kicked off now?
The statement, on behalf of the foreign ministers of the United States, Russia, China, Britain, France, Germany and the European Union, came five weeks after the group had asked Iran to resume negotiations with the IAEA over suspending its nuclear programme. There had still been no response from Tehran. ‘In this context,’ declared Mr Douste-Blazy, ‘we have no choice but to return to the United Nations Security Council and take forward the process that was suspended two months ago. We have agreed to seek a United Nations Security Council resolution which would make the IAEA-required suspension mandatory.’

That announcement, which had been anticipated in Tehran, is the likeliest trigger for last Wednesday’s attack. And the message that Tehran delivered in return, courtesy of its Lebanese proxy, was loud and clear: Iran would — and could — inflict ‘harm and pain’ on US interests; and not just in the Middle East. Hezbollah’s playground extends far beyond the region. It has a formidable global reach.

It was over a year ago (and one of my first posts) that I first wrote about Iran's connection to the Iraqi insurgency; since then I have expanded on my theories on a number of occasions. And I still believe that my basic assessment of Iran's actions was pretty much spot-on. Only, it appears that I may not have gone far enough.

My basic contention was that Iran had done all that it could to tie up, logistically and politically, those countries who were most likely to threaten it's power base (particularly the US and Britain); once the Iraq invasion had been carried out, this was simple to achieve: simply fund and train the "insurgents" and this would do the job very nicely. Iran also pretended, after negotiations, to suspend its nuclear ambitions, if only to provide France and Germany with a stick with which to beat the US. When this had been done, Iran blithely carried on with its nuclear programme, to the dismay of "old" Europe.

The possession of nuclear weaponry has been the constant and unerring wish of the Iranian administration for decades, but no one was foolish enough to sell them one; nobody wants a nuclear-capable Iran. So, they have to do it the long way, which is almost better because then you have complete control over their deployment (unlike, for instance, Britain). Once Iran can credibly claim to have nuclear weapons, I said, then you will see the Iraq insurgency collapse and fade away in a very short space of time.

But what then? Will Iran simply use the nukes as a purely defensive capability? Or might they attempt to "wipe Israel off the map"? Would they really use nuclear weapons? Surely they would be oliterated? Not necessarily.
Would we launch a retaliative nuclear strike. Very, very unlikely. We could hardly condemn them for using nuclear weaponry and then do so ourselves. So what? No doubt there'll be a bit of "worldwide condemnation" and some people will stop trading with them. But then, the US, for instance, doesn't trade with them anyway so they wouldn't lose much there.

Let's, just for a second, suppose that the Iranian regime was sufficiently anti-Jewish enough to launch a nuclear attack against Israel: given the relative size of the two countries, who do you think is going to suffer more from a few megatons of nuclear weaponry going off in their country? Without any warning?

I may, of course, be being slightly melodramatic or very paranoid. But, what if Iran did try to invade Israel without using nukes, but held up the threat of doing so? What would we do?

An interesting dilemma, no...?
Noreen was in London recently...
And when you bit into the thing, the first mouthful was raw dough, entirely, all folded up like the side of a present, and then the second mouthful was the squashed beans all firing out of the doughy shell like tiny aborted foetuses, each one clutching a strand of shredded, long lettuce, and there was some kind of a sauce on it which I have no idea what was in it, it was like a tomato sauce but with small bits of green stuff that were both crunchy and soggy. Fucking horrible thing... it was like sucking out congealed blood from, and then chewing a corpse's cock.


David Miliband is my new best friend. Apparently.

An email correspondant alerts me to the fact that Master Miliband would appear to be cognisant of The Kitchen.
I imagine someone else might've mentioned it already (or indeed you may well have been at last night's New Statesman New Media Awards bash yourself), but in case someone hasn't, and you weren't [as is the case—DK], David Miliband, in his keynote speech, quoted your comments to/about him rather extensively, thus making you responsible for the first Minister ever to say 'batshit' in public.

And if that isn't a claim to fame, I have no idea what is...

Quite. I assume that he was referring to this post in which I accused Mr Miliband of being... er... rather less than sane. Or, of course, it could be the comment that I left on his blog...

Has anyone got a transcript or a link to a webcast or something?

UPDATE: According to Nosemonkey, I am firmly in the nutter camp.
(The fact that he quoted extensively from Devil's Kitchen's insults to him - "That David Miliband has lost his fucking mind... batshit mad" - as an example of the kind of nutters he's had to put up with since starting his blog almost got me wanting to buy the man a pint...)

Oh, did ickle David crwy? Did he break down and sob because of all the people being nasty to him? Poor ickle boy. That will teach him to advocate incredibly stupid ideas: he's a Minister of the Crown, for fuck's sake.

Oh well, let's face it, The Kitchen was hardly going to be there in the "honourable mention" stakes or, indeed, the "polite and lovely" awards, especially when the person quoting is a NuLabour Minister; besides, if Miliband feels a little hurt then he ought to thank his lucky fucking stars that he isn't Charles Clarke.
You see? That's precisely what I'm talking about.

Right, time to lay into Gordo or something.

Saturday, July 22, 2006

Via Clairwil, why not send in your very own postcard manifesto?

He wants to use it for some kind of project, so get sending! I think that mine will read something along the lines of:
I would like to rule the world so that:
  1. I can help the poor to help themselves

  2. I can smoke in the House of Commons bar

  3. I can string up the NuLabour administration from assorted lamposts along Pall Mall

Now I'm off to find a postcard and a stamp...

Friday, July 21, 2006

Bastions of Education: Part the Millionth

A little anecdotal story for you here, about a young friend of mine who studied Classics at Oxford. This young lady, whilst proficient at coursework and other such in-term things, always got somewhat nervous and thus did rather poorly in exams.

As a result, when her Finals were approaching, her tutor called her in with a proposal. "If you let me know your exam number," said the tutor, "then I shall make sure that you get a First."

Bastions of education, ladies and gentlemen. Naturally, it made no difference that this young lady is rather pretty; the tutor was offering to cheat for her out of the pure goodness of his heart. The young lady in question, to give her her due, turned down the tutor's generous offer and eventually got a 2:1; however, she knows other people who accepted the proposal and, sure enough, Firsts all round.

Oxford, ladies and gentlemen: bastion of our Further Education establishment, where the tutors cheat for you. Now that's what I call dedication to the student cause!

P.S. The above is entirely true.

Thursday, July 20, 2006

The Gobblin' King is screwed

Bad news for The One-Eyed Gobblin' King as the Beeb reports the worst June ever for the public finances.
UK public finances suffered their worst June on record, figures from the Office for National Statistics (ONS) show.

Government borrowing rose to £7.3bn in June from £6.2bn during the same month last year - significantly higher than analysts' forecasts of £6.5bn.

Meanwhile, the current budget deficit stood at £6.4bn, £1.7bn higher than at the same time last year.

Experts said high spending was to blame, as grants to local authorities had been paid earlier than usual.

Oh dear, oh dear. Do, please, permit me a little snigger at Gordo's expense.


OK, that was more of a gleeful guffaw but it felt really good.
Elsewhere, economic activity appeared to be fairly healthy, with consumer spending picking up and tax receipts rising 5.4% year-on-year.

Hmmm, so the private sector is picking up Gordon's tab, eh? It was ever thus...
In his recent Budget, Chancellor Gordon Brown insisted he would meet his target of cutting the current budget deficit to £7bn and public sector net borrowing to £36bn.

That promise may now prove difficult to keep, as current borrowing for the year now stands at £16.4bn.

The trouble is, these sums of money just don't seem to register anymore so, just to clarify, public sector borrowing is currently standing at 16,400,000,000 of our great British pounds. Aren't you encouraged?

The trouble is, in a time of growth (which The Gobblin' King continues to insist that we are) we should not be borrowing; what happens when the inevitable downturn hits? The traditional way has been to spend out of recession but, if borrowing is already at this level, then what the hell will the government have left to spend?
Amusing search terms #94: Tommy Sheridan is a cunt.

I have never actually written that sentence, but I have to agree: Tommy Sheridan is, indeed, a cunt.

I think that someone should tell Tony...

... that David Milliband has lost his fucking mind. I mean, what is this guy on? Personal carbon points?

Well, as Perry points out, it is simply another method of control.
Make no mistake, this is not about environmentalist voodoo science, it is about controlling people and this is the tool they are going to use.

But David is really enthused because he's a fucking nutcase.
In a speech to the Audit Commission last night, Mr Miliband said: "Imagine a country where carbon becomes a new currency. We carry bank cards that store both pounds and carbon points.

Wow! How about imagining a country where we already have a currency and where "green taxes" were used to restrict the use of these externalities. Oh, wait, hang on...

He really has gone bat-shit mad.

Why not read this rather detailed and yet economical deconstruction at The Register?

Exams results are a fucking joke

Via Allan, one has to applaud the comments by this teacher from "the other place"*.
Harrow School, in west London, which sets its own literacy test, found some teenagers with A* grades had a "tenuous grip" on some aspects of language use.

English teacher Tom Wickson said staff had become "increasingly concerned" at standards expected of GCSE students.

Writing in the school magazine, Mr Wickson said: "Can't spell simple words and can't punctuate a simple sentence, but can still get an A grade in GCSE English? That can't be right, can it?

"Well, yes, at Harrow we frequently find that can be the case."

But of course we mustn't bash the students who have worked so hard for their, frankly, unbelievable results. The entire system has become utterly degraded; the very fact that the A* grade exists shows that. Either something is worth an A or it is not; the system should not require that "really good A grades" are denoted by a star unless the level required to get an A has dropped considerably. And recently (there were no A* grades when I was taking GSCEs in 1992 and 1993).

We were also required to do O Level papers for practice: they were considerably harder than GCSE. To attempt to argue that exams have not got easier is an impossible task; they have got easier. GCSE papers are easier than O Level. Fact.

That our system has become so degraded that Glasgow University has to hold remedial English classes for its English Literature undergraduates, for fuck's sake, shows this. You don't get onto the Eng. Lit. course at Glasgow Uni with anything less than an A in Eng. Lit. A Level; you should not need lessons in writing English.

No eighteen year old in the entire fucking country should need remedial lessons in reading and writing their own fucking language. I mean, what kind of fucking spastics are coming out of our schools these days? This is our own langugage, you stupid bastards; no wonder everyone looks down on the English and their pathetic lack of ability with everyone else's languages; we cannot even speak our own...

God, it's so fucking depressing.

* An Eton joke... Although, one should always remember that "Harrow wear their Y-fronts backwards" (this chant served two functions: firstly, it suggested that Harrow boys indulged in—and enjoyed—copious amounts of boy-on-boy action; secondly it suggested that they were so stupid that they were quite unable to put their pants on the correct way). I can't comment on whether or not "Harrow parents drive red buses"...

Iain Dale loses more votes for the Tories

As some of you may have realised, I feel an increasing contempt for the Tory party. Not uncoincidentally, I also loathe the EU and all—and, yes, I do mean all—that it stands for, i.e. state control, murder and corruption. I also rather like Iain Dale and his style of writing (and, of course, I was happy to contribute a small (though rather edited) article to The Little Red Book Of New Labour Sleaze). Thus, it is with a heavy heart that I must report this answer that Iain gave to Mike Ion.
I did not vote for IDS, I voted for Ken Clarke, but I was presented with a choice of two people, neither of whom I thought would be a good leader.

No, Iain, you were presented with a choice of two people, one of whom would be a bad leader (although he spoke very eloquently on opposition to the EU in the early 90s) and a Quisling piece of shit. Given these, you voted for the traitor. Which, of course, makes you as bad as him ("Who is worse? The fool, or the fool who follows him?"). It simply confirms my view of political parties; that these fuckers will vote for whichever cunt will get them into power and hang the poor bastards who will have to pay for their representatives' lack of conscience.

Furthermore, it beggars belief how Iain can possibly admit to voting for that total and utter bastard Ken "hang him for treason" Clarke and reconcile such a decision with this statement:
I’m a Conservative because I believe in freedom, liberty under the rule of law and allowing people to live their own lives with as little interference from the State as possible... I believe that private initiative is almost always preferable to the dead hand of the State.

Yes, Iain, I agree with you. But then why did you vote for Ken Clarke, who is not only a central-managerialist but also—and perhaps because of his attitude to government—very much pro-EU? Did you think it was funny? Or clever? Were you perhaps over-tired and showing off?

Or were you perhaps—as most of our other elected representatives seem to—simply looking for the guaranteed income and that oh-so-delicious and mouthwatering final-salary pension?

For shame, Dale; for shame.

UPDATE: Oh, and Iain goes on:
I would abolish stamp duty, which I regard as licensed robbery by the State

Brilliant! And what other tax is not licensed robbery by the state?
Since then it has become the second most popular political blog in the UK, for reasons I am still trying to understand. I never intended for it to be anything other than a hobby and a platform for me to write about things I was interested in. Why is it so popular?

Good question, Iain. By the way, how do you measure your blog's popularity (not sarky, just asking). I hope that it is not by this measure because that would be patently unfair. Not only do you have to register (which means that only those who have seen it will actually be ranked) but it means that last week The Kitchen was the fifth top political blog which would, frankly, be a joke.
Hilary Benn. He’s transparently a nice guy and very competent. I understand he turned down a promotion because he wants to complete things he has started at DFID. If the Labour Party had any sense Hilary Benn would be in the running for Leader or Deputy Leader when the Great Helmsman eventually goes. Unlike most Tories I also like Hazel Blears. I worked with her after the 7/7 bombings and always found her a pleasure to do business with (along with Charles Clarke). I refer to her as “my little chipmunk”!

What can I possibly say? I mean, for fuck's sake.

However, to give him his due, Iain answers all the "you're a fucking gay Tory bastard" questions with aplomb. These people are the sort who just simply are not worth winning over; if any party that I supported won with the support of those cunts then I would have to leave it.

Other than that, he's a Ken Clarke supporter and a traitor and, come the revolution, I might spare Brown's son. There's only so many bullets that I can afford...

UPDATE 2:I should point out that the vehemence of the above piece is in no way aimed at a dislike of Iain; it is my savage loathing of the EU and my contempt for the Hush Puppy Kid that motivated my vitriol. And, as Iain points out, in the interests of accuracy, I should have posted his whole answer (although I had assumed that most of you would follow the link and read it) so here it is.
"I did not vote for IDS, I voted for Ken Clarke, but I was presented with a choice of two people, neither of whom I thought would be a good leader. I thought about not voting but that would have been a cop-out. I voted for Ken on the basis that if he was successful we’d all be happy but if he failed, he’d be easier to get rid of than IDS. A terrible way to vote, but there you go. Was IDS up to being leader? In some ways yes but in others no. Too many MPs remembered his anti Maastricht activities and felt that if he could rebel so often on that, why should they remain loyal to him? And the lack of loyalty was the main reason for his fall. However, he did achieve two things. He put social justice on the mainstream Tory agenda and he quelled the Party splits on Europe which had bedeviled us for a decade or more."

That IDS was able to quell the EU splits is achievement enough, and something that Clarke could never have done; he is too tainted with the EU mark. He probably has an EU glyph and barcode tattooed on the back of his neck. And, although actually a rather good Chancellor (although he fucked up pretty much everything else that he touched) I do not, in any way, regard Ken Clarke as a Tory. As my support for The Serf's Anyone But Ken site (now rather conveniently rebranded to campaign against the newt-lover) I think that he is a power-grubbing, mendacious tit of the worst sort.

The trouble is that IDS was simply—and admirably—reflecting the views of all too many voters who did not want to sign up to Maastricht. This debate has not gone away (that much should be obvious); there are a great many voters who feel that the EU is a vital matter to Britain's interests and, more importantly, there are now no mainstream parties who are in any way Eurosceptic. Cameron's EPP malarkey is simply a distraction; this is, after all, the man who declared that no Eurosceptics have any place on his front bench. That's right, let's close down that debate, eh?

I am increasingly coming to believe, not least from the goading by commenter IanLondon, that it is party politics that is one of the most fundamental problems in this country.
Look, I want to make this absolutely clear: the Scots are generally the nicest people on Earth (as long as you don't have an RP accent). They are extremely friendly (even the junkies and alckies) and are generally a lot of fun to be with.

Unfortunately they are ruled by absolute and total cunts, whose one ambition, i.e. to make themselves a power on the world stage, is doomed to failure. These rulers are, I think, the worst people in the world; I mean this completely and seriously; their frustration makes them dangerous.

They must die in agony pour encourager les autres; they are fucking scum. Illiberal, facsist shits of the very first water. Jack McConnell was a failed maths teacher, for fuck's sake.

The Scots are, mostly, a lot of fun (my biggest compliment) but they are ruled by evil shits. We are all afflicted...

Wednesday, July 19, 2006

Health Nazis invade Picnicland

Jack McConnell: pug-faced moronJack McConnell: pug-faced moron, failed teacher, fascist, adulterer and moron.

What is it that makes those in authority such total and utter bastards? It simply must be true that power corrupts, because it seems that all of our rulers seem bent on making everyone else's lives a fucking misery. Mind you, personally, I think that socialists are the very masters at this game, since their entire philosophy revolves around fascism, bent—as it is—towards forcing people to do things which they would not naturally wish to.

And, of course, foremost in this pantheon of theft and evil is Scotland's toy-town government, an organisation which is bent on making Scotland an intolerable place to live. Thus, this Herald headline comes as absolutely no surprise whatso-fucking-ever:
Call for full ban on public drinking

A ban on drinking in public places should be rolled out across the entire country, according to a working group looking at ways to control marches and parades.

The few councils that allow the practice are being pressured to fall into line with the majority of local authorities by passing by-laws against public drinking, with support from the Scottish Executive for a complete ban in Edinburgh.

Do you see what they are doing here? In order to control the actions of a very, very tiny minority, the Scottishg Executive are determined that everybody should suffer. NIce, middle-class family want to have a picnic in the sun on the Meadows and have a glass of Pimms? No, sorry, it's off to the fucking slammer for you, son.
The team of experts reported this week that drinking alcohol at marches – notably at Loyalist and Republican processions during summer – should be further controlled.

A team of experts? What do you want to bet that this team contains at least one fucking cunt of a fucking doctor who cannot keep his fucking trap shut, eh?
They stated: "By-laws have significantly reduced the nuisance and disorder normally associated with drinking in public".

Yes, and they have also considerably curtailed the quality of life for those who do not cause any disturbance whilst having a quiet drink in one of Scotland's many green spaces. You fucking cunt-boxes, I hope that your limbs drop off and your lips are sewn together with coarse string inpregnated with salt-water.
Their report notes that only five out of 32 councils have not barred outdoor drinking in public. But at the end of last month, Edinburgh Council – the only one of the five where there are Orange or Republican marches – approved a similar drinking ban to the one that already applies in Glasgow, Aberdeen, Dundee and 450 other towns and villages.

Well, we know that the City of Edinburgh Council are one of the biggest bunch of bastards—apart, of course, from the Executive themselves—this side of Bastardtown in Bastardland, the fucking bastards.
Some, such as Glasgow's, cover the whole council area while others are targeted at problem areas. The remaining four councils without a public drink ban are Aberdeenshire, Borders, Orkney and Shetland.

There's only a total of about 30 people in Orkney and Shetland anyway. The Borders is almost entirely populated by farms and small villages; I wonder what the police think of trying to enforce this ban on 400 acres of farmland, eh? As for Aberdeen, well, most of the population are on rigs half the time, as far as I can tell.

Luckily, Edinburgh Council did make at least one concession to common sense (and that fact surprised me, I can tell you).
The Edinburgh by-law follows a dispute with the executive over how the offence is defined, in which the Justice Department last month relented and gave the capital's council the leeway to have a different outdoor drinking offence.
Edinburgh wants to make its by-law apply when a drinker "fails to desist when required to do so by a police officer".

This is a half-way sensible compromise, but the Council should not have been pressured into this step in the first place.
The executive wanted public drinking to be an offence even without a police officer asking for it to stop.

The Executive and their pug-faced moron of a First Minister can—with all due respect, i.e. none—some their laws up their arseholes and fuck off while they are doing it. The bunch of fascist shitbags. Have you never heard the concept of innocent until proven guilty, you bunch of illiberal shysters?
The capital's councillors unanimously told the executive their option "struck the right balance and was appropriate to the character and circumstances of the city", and it has support from the police and procurator-fiscal. It allows picnics where alcohol is consumed to go ahead in Princes Street Gardens, while police can tackle heavy drinkers' favoured haunts in nearby Hunter Square and other parts of the Old Town.

Er, then why is it needed? Why cannot these drunks (of which there are a few) be picked up under the existing laws? The answer is that they can be; they just aren't because it is too difficult for the police to enforce.
The by-law is awaiting final approval from the executive before being put in place, and will cover the entire city.

And I bet that the Executive try to take out the reasonable get-out clause. This is because the Scottish Executive are a bunch of corrupt, money-grabbing scum with all of the intelligence and integrity of the offspring of Baldrick and Blackadder.

When will McConnell and the rest of his evil band get the message? And the message is this: stop interfering in the lives of law-abiding citizens, get on with providing the services which you are currently utterly failing to provide adequately, and then fuck off and die, you bunch of spineless, pusillanimous, secretary-fucking, expenses-fiddling cunts. Fuck you, fuck you, fuck you, you fucking fucks.

Would the last civilised liberal to leave Scotland please turn out the light...
Thanks to Tom, who pointed me to this amusing podcast by Drinking At Home, who interviews Polly on her first meeting with Gordon Brown.

Go on: find out how much she's worth! Well, it made me laugh...

Gordon's legacy

Oh, I see that The One-Eyed Gobblin King's regular shag has given birth to yet another little demon; I do wonder if they are going to call this one Damien. Even if they don't, let's face it, our Cyclopean finance-wizard is fooling nobody.

That is why, upon hearing the news, I bought another one of these:

After all, now there's another to go against the wall when the revolution comes. Or, if I may paraphrase the Emperor, if he will not turn to the right side, then he will die...!

News in briefs (well, shorts, actually)...

Apologies for the lack of posting; I have been very busy but, most importantly, being busy elsewhere than my office, i.e. my front room. But here's a few tidbits...

Lebanon: you should have made the effort to control Hezbollah when you had the chance.
Rest of the world: You acknowledge that Iran and Syria are the backers of an organisation that started this... well, let's call a spade a spade... this war. It's time to work out where you stand. Oh, yes, and acknowledge that it is patently the same bunch of bastards sponsoring—with money, weapons and expertise—the so-called "insurgency" in Iraq: I've written about this at length on a number of occasions. Anyway, Arthur (welcome back!) has some good links and roundups on this. Oh, and Mr E points out that Robert Fisk is a) wrong, and b) a tosspot. But then we knew that: it's why we call it fisking.

Indian train bombings: Now, might I suggest that the Indians take a good look at themselves, as British have done after our little incident, and work out exactly what kind of guilt they are going to indulge in that they may spare the terrorists themselves any blame.

Another tsunami in Indonesia: most unfortunate. Luckily, my friends out there are safe. One of them is raising funds—a number of her husband's friends appear to be missing—so if anyone would like to click on the PayPal button at the side of this blog, I will ensure that the funds are transferred to her bank so that she can get relief strainght to people. It's a private appeal, but I reckon it will be all the more effective for all that.

Polly Toynbee: She is still a twat, but nobody seems to be able to sum up the energy to give her the kicking that she deserves. Having said that, I see that her latest article is on energy policy: I may well summon up the time and energy to kick her into touch over that lot...

Roy Hattersley: still an awful, bitter, evil old windbag; why not read The Vented Spleen's take on Roy's latest dribble? The Snipe also has a wonderful go at Cherie Blair, a woman who redefines the phrase, "vulgar, tasteless, money-grabbing bitch": and, I'm sorry, but does anyone remember electing her to speak for us...?

I will hopefully be back to writing more within the next couple of days; oh, and for those of you with a musical bent, my brother's up for the weekend and will (almost certainly) be playing an informal, acoustic gig at The Holyrood Tavern pub. Feel free to drop down; we'll probably kick off at about half-eightish/nine (to be confirmed).

Apologies for the brevity: your humble Devil shall return soon. In the meantime, I must have written a good couple of million words over the last year and a half: why not dip into the archives and peruse some of my more youthful efforts (in which there is also, as a rule, less swearing)?

Back soon...

Tuesday, July 18, 2006

Britain's top political commentator

Proof, if proof were really needed, that The Devil's Kitchen is woefully behind the curve of public opinion has come to light in the form of a survey of Britain's "top 100 opinion makers" seeking the answer to a pressing question: who is Britain's top political commentator?

As you can imagine, the competition was stiff. Parris, Rawnsley, Aaronovitch, Jenkins - all got honourable mentions. But there could be only one. Yes, that's it... you're beginning to guess...

DK adds: This had better be some kind of sick joke. I mean, for fuck's sake, her...?!?

DK furtherly adds: So where was The Kitchen in this poll? Second, third...?

Mr Eugenides: For the avoidance of doubt, there was no mention of The Kitchen. Damn MSM fuddy-duddies...

Saturday, July 15, 2006

Well, it's predictable, but I quite enjoyed this little joke.
In the year 2006, the Lord came unto Noah and said, "Once again, the earth has become wicked and over-populated, and I see the end of all flesh before me. Build another Ark and save two of every living thing along with a few good humans."

He gave Noah the blueprints, saying, "You have 6 months to build the Ark before I will start the unending rain for 40 days and 40 nights."

Six months later, the Lord looked down and saw Noah weeping in his yard - but no Ark. "Noah!" He roared, "I'm about to start the rain! Where is the Ark?"

"Forgive me, Lord," begged Noah, "but things have changed...

Although, admittedly, how much is a joke and how much is all too depressingly real is somewhat debateable...

The EU and the yoof...

For those of you who may be unfamiliar with these two pathetic excuses for human beings, here's a swift run-down...

Jack McConnell: pug-faced moronJack McConnell: pug-faced moron.

Jack is Scotland's First Minister. That means that he is the biggest, slimiest and most corrupt of all of the useless, trade-union activists and venal Councillors who make up Scotland's toy-town parliament. Jack thinks that he is quite cool, but actually he is a fuckwit of epic proportions: after being heavily involved in the NUS, Jack went on to become a mathematics teacher, but soon gave that up to concentrate on a career in the local Council. As such, if Jack has ever been involved in any wealth creation, it will only have been in fiddling his expense accounts. To finish off this little introduction, let me pass you onto the poor, little Greek boy (who is, despite accusations to the contrary, not one of my relations).
It would, wouldn't it? So how hard can it be to answer yes or no, you spineless, cowardly twat? Yes or no, you clock-punching cunt who wouldn't know an original idea if he found it nestling inside his secretary's knickers? Answer the fucking question, you knob. What the fuck are you for, anyway? What have you done? Banned smoking? Pontificated about England fans? Fucked a woman who was not your wife? Fuck you. Oh, wait, his sphincter's still moving - he must still be talking...

Blah blah blah blah fucking blah. Go and drown yourself, you pug-faced moron.

As you can tell, Jack is a popular lad.

Margot Wallstrom: Quisling bitchMargot Wallstom: Quisling bitch.

And now onto the second of our guests, the The Ever Blessed and Fragrant Margot Wallstrom (cheers, Timmy). The lovely Margot is up for eviction this week looking for love and can only choose one of our lovely fellas Vice-President of the EU Commission; a post she inherited from that other political giant, Neil Kinnock (the "Welsh Windbag"). As such, Margot is the person in charge of making sure that everybody loves the EU (she was rather surprised, as it happens, that this job was even needed as she has been sucking Satan's cock for so long that she assumed that everybody was already in love with the concept). Margot was first appointed to the Commission in 1999 and, so eager were the Swedes to stay rid of her, that they appointed her again a few years later (just to ensure that she got the message).

Margot is notable for running what, for want of a better word, we will call "a blog" and is notable for saying such things as "First, we cannot abandon [desperate immigrants]. The European Union must put money where the needs are: help relieve Africa from hunger, disease and abuse of human and civil rights. This is the only solution.", apparently without any irony. As Dr North put it, in the comments:
It isn't the only solution and not even any solution. Give a man a fish, and he feeds himself once. Teach him to fish and you feed him for life. Steal his fish and you condemn him to penury. Ergo, stop stealing their fish. That would be a small start.

He was ably backed up by Tim Worstall, who added:
As above with Richard North’s comment. If the EU wasn’t bribing corrupt African governments to allow Spanish trawlers to vacuum up all the fish then the starving fishermen wouldn’t be using their boats to try to get to The Canaries. And drowning on the way as often as not.

So one thing useful you could do is toddle down the corridor to the office of your colleague (Joe Borg if you’ve not had the chance to make his acquaintance yet) and tell him to stop killing Africans.

But then, alas, neither politicians nor bureaucrats ever quite seem to realise that they are not the solution, all too often they are the problem.

Margot is one of those people who hasn't quite grasped that she and her evil partners in the EU are, indeed, the problem. Unfortunately, she is pig-shit thick, and yet no one has caved her skull in with a boathook; they must be waiting for EU funding.

UPDATE: I'm sorry, but I don't think that I made this clear enough; what I am saying is that either Margot is pig-shit ignorant and stupid beyond any degree of reasonable belief or she is a lying, immoral hypocrite of the very worst sort. You guys can decide what you want. Personally, whatever way you go on this absorbing question, I think that she is a murderer, either by negligance or design, and should be imprisoned without hope of parole. Just saying, is all...

So, imagine everybody's delight when these two got together in the same room, sponsored by The Herald, to help brainwash a bunch of innocent kiddiewinks; why not watch the whole webcast (if you can stay awake, or refrain from throwing things at your monitor). So, what was the outcome? Let's look at The Herald's report shall we?
When Jack McConnell retreated from the public stage at Stevenson College in Edinburgh, it was with a decidedly sweaty brow and a cheerful sigh of relief. "I'm exhausted," he exhaled breathlessly. And he wasn't joking.

The last time I interviewed a politician who looked half as tired I was speaking to Andy Kerr, the Health Minister, after he had run a 10k race in New York's Central Park during Tartan Week two years ago. Back then, Kerr's beetroot-red face beamed at me as he spoke of his pride at Scotland's close relations with the US. On Wednesday night, his boss – the First Minister – was doing likewise, but this time all talk was of Scotland and Europe.

Or rather more precisely, Britain and Europe; he was, amongst other things, attempting to predict British policy in order to suck up to the Fragrant One.
McConnell had just taken part in a question-and-answer session alongside the formidably talented and articulate Margot Wallstroem, vice- president of the European Commission, in front of 100 or so Scottish youngsters aged 16 to 25.

For "formidably talented and articulate" read, "ever blessed and fragrant with a strong Scandinavian accent, admirably suited to that region's film speciality, although I wouldn't personally be interested in "fixing her fridge"". And they do like their youngsters, don't they: I wonder why?

Here's an idea; is it because young people are less interested in or, more importantly, informed about politics and as such they are easier to bamboozle? Could it also be that young people do not have the trenchant hatred of the EU and all of its works that their elders (including gentlemen of 28, hem hem) might possess. Is it because people like me might ask Margot why her precious Commission is deliberately pursuing policies that leads to the needless deaths of hundreds of thousands of people a year, and the disenfranchisement, economic ruin and starvation of millions more? I think that it might be.

Or that people like me might ask Jack why his government is attacking private property rights, why he is pursuing the madness that is wind power, why he is destroying private enterprise, why he is wasting such vast amounts of public money or why he is such a useless cunt? Quite possibly.
For Wallstroem, this is what Europe should be all about. The mother-of-two is one of the brightest stars on the European scene and a passionate missionary for the ideal of co-operation. She is also arguably a rare breed in the corridors of Brussels, with her natural good looks and charisma.

No comment on that score... Oh fuck, I wouldn't touch her with yours. That's because her soul is rotted away and her self-delusion is almost comical.
Wallstroem's post was created with the specific aim of improving the way the concept of "Europe" is communicated to its citizens, and in particular its young citizens. She has always said that one of the most important aims of the European project must be to get it back in touch with its people.

Jam today
Well, Margot, you could try being elected, rather than appointed. You could try not demoting, sacking or imprisoning people who blow the whistle on fraud. You could try not defrauding the EU, and you could try to ensure that, just for one fucking year, the accounts are actually signed off. You could also try drowning yourselves.
The 51-year-old believes that a generation which travels more, communicates more easily and studies in foreign countries will be receptive to this idea.

Or, rather, be easier to bribe with fewer border controls and no commission on changing money; sweeties to keep the children occupied whilst the grown-ups repeatedly bum-rape their younger, poorer cousins in the room upstairs.
"We politicians are accountable to 450 million Europeans and you expect us to work together, to be effective, to communicate with you and to give you a voice.

The whole point is that you are not accountable to us, Margot; you are not elected. And we don't want you to "give us a voice": we want you, the politicians, to do what the fuck we tell you to do.
We can never be allowed to forget that. That is what gives me my political motivation," she said on Wednesday.

Sodomy tomorrow
That's why, I'm sure, you do the job for free; or do you donate your salary to Africans? No? Oh.
So the Ask Europe event, produced in association with The Herald, was just her kind of thing. Young people had come from various parts of Scotland, including Edinburgh, Glasgow Stirling, Dunblane and Hamilton, with the purpose of putting the two politicians through their paces. Few left disappointed – including Jack McConnell.

I'll bet Jack was really satisfied: he didn't have to answer any specific questions from anyone who might know what he was talking about, and he got to pontificate on matters that do not concern him.
"Tonight was excellent," he said afterwards. "I thought it was very interesting; I think young people ask [really easy questions] great questions and that was shown tonight. Seeing their opinions was interesting [Was it, Jack? How do you "see" opinions? Or did you mean "hear"?—DK]. I think young people are more positively European than older people, and that came through in the questions and votes tonight."

Inexperienced fish latte
Well, I think that we have discussed this...
The event, hosted by Douglas Fraser, Scottish Political Editor of The Herald, was introduced by the 19-year-old vice-chair of the Scottish Youth Parliament (SYP), Hilary Lynn. The intention of the night, said Lynn, standing beside McConnell and Wallstroem, was "to bring discussion and debate about Europe closer to young people".

Indeed, so much discussion and debate did they want to bring to young people, that there was not even one Eurosceptic representative there. This wasn't debate: this was propaganda.
Pauline Welsh, 22, a member of the Castlemilk Youth Complex, a voluntary organisation in Glasgow, questioned Wallstroem on how the EU could help some of her area's more disadvantaged youngsters. After a word or two of explanation from the First Minister about precisely where Castlemilk was and what problems it has, Wallstroem said that what Europe could do was help provide the area with more skills and work.

Say, "yes, Paul"
Of course, because that is what the state does, eh? It takes money from wealth-creating bodies (i.e. private businesses and individuals) and then gives it to places like Castlemilk, thus generating jobs and work, as Tommy Cooper would say, "just like that!" Erm...
Although appreciative, Welsh later said she remained a little confused on the specifics of such assistance. "I just felt they went round in circles and didn't actually answer the questions we asked in the first place. As a project we still don't know where we stand with them [Europe]."

Welcome to politics, welcome to the European project. Get used to it, love...
But Wallstroem would have been reassured by the enthusiasm the young people in the audience showed for Europe. There may not have been widespread backing for a federalist Europe, but there certainly was for closer links. "Cooperation rather than centralisation" became the catchphrase of the night.

Yeah, well, it's the federal Europe that is on the cards. There aren't any other options being offered, you see.
Anton Dupliy, a 22-year-old asylum seeker from Russia who now lives in Springburn in Glasgow, has been desperate to work or attend university since coming to Scotland four years ago. "If asylum-seekers could work, that would be beneficial for the economy," he said. "I can't do anything with the skills I have. I've just finished an HND in multi-media computing at Langside College but I can't use it anywhere and I can't go on to further study. I want to work and I want to pay my own way through university. I'm not going to ask for help or money; I just want to be able to work and pay my own way."

Well, this is all very laudable but what, precisely, has it got to do with the EU? Zip, nothing, nada. It is the British government that ensures that asylum seekers cannot work (at present, anyway). Besides, last time I looked, Russia was neither in the EU nor considering plans to join.
Arguably the question of the night, in as much as it got the liveliest reception from the floor, came from Glasgow teenager Ross McRae. The 17-year-old student at Williamwood High asked McConnell if he thought Scotland should join the European currency now or in the future, or go it alone [from the rest of the UK].

To the delight of what was a predominantly pro-Euro audience, McConnell said he thought that Britain joining the currency was inevitable. "I personally don't have a problem with the Euro as a currency for Scotland and the UK," he said. "I can remember the days when there were lots of different European currencies, and that was not necessarily healthy."

Woah, Jack, don't commit yourself too heavily there, matey: "not necessarily healthy"? Coo, don't pin yourself down! Oh and, Jack, why? Would you care to expand on that? Would you like to expand on why the different countries of Europe setting their own interests rates and economic targets depending on their own trading conditions was worse that the current mess that the European Central Bank is sailing into? Perhaps, Jack, you would like to explain to everyone why, although you can see a distinct North-South divide in purchasing and earning power in a place as small as the UK, having a Central Bank for a landmass as huge and diverse as Europe is a good thing? Jack... Jack...? Hello?

Also, don't presume to talk for Britain; you only want to talk for Britain because you are fully aware that Scotland hasn't got a cat's chance in hell of going it alone. Fuck off.
Having had an opportunity to digest the First Minister's comments, McRae, a sixth-year pupil and SNP supporter, said he was pleased with McConnell's reply. He said: "I was surprised in the way that he answered my question, in as much as he could have easily given me a flat no. But he didn't. He elaborated on his position and in that respect I was surprised with the answer, but not necessarily the content. It was interesting too to hear just what he was thinking about global economics in terms of the world being divided up into massive trading blocks of India, China, Russia, Europe and North and South America. It was all pretty advanced. You can really see it happening in the future. It wasn't something I had thought about before."

Yes, very interesting, Mr McRae. Although, you might, of course, have noticed that he didn't actually answer the question that you asked, and then distracted you, conjuror-style, with a load of dubious geopolitical flim-flam. As I said, welcome to politics...
Prior to the event, McRae confessed to suffering from political apathy. "I've been pretty apathetic recently about politics, Europe and the Scottish Parliament, to be honest. But over the course of the evening you got an overall view of what McConnell was thinking, and he did explain things well. He went into detail in his answers.
"I was very satisfied with the answers he gave, and I didn't think I was going to be. And Margot Wallstroem was excellent. She spoke really well about Europe and she's right: it is a good thing. The First Minister has reignited my interest in politics, which is great – as well as unexpected."

Brainwashed, you see. It's fucking tragic, it really is. McConnell and Wallstrom were like a couple of internet paedophiles "grooming" their victims. In a chat-room situation, these perverts would have been locked up...
If even half the room went away as satisfied as McRae, McConnell's effort and sweat was well worth it. The First Minister himself was in little doubt: "I think there is a place for political debate and argument, but ultimately these sessions are much more significant for those we are brain-washing with our devious, evil propaganda; oh, and sweeties: don't forget the lovely sweeties the people who will hear and read the questions and answers than the political debaters.

What a cunt.
"One of the young people I was speaking to at the end [McRae, as it turned out] made a very good point, and that was: whenever you give some space to young people, they fill it. I think that was shown tonight. If young people get the opportunity, they seize it with both hands."

Horse-faced cow: a paradox
Yup, and whenever the EU sees an opportunity to groom some young 'uns, it will be seizing that opportunity from now on. Soon their EU-Youth will be running through that land: persuading some and "disappearing" the rest. The EU's Fifth Columnists, ready to knife the opponents of the one true religion: soon, the armies of the damned will be charging the barricades, with their terrifying cry of, "for god, the EU and Margot!"

Personally, I'm going to track down that eminently sensible girl from Castlemilk, the one who wasn't convinced. Obviously, she is not easily hypnotised by Margot's fragrance and Jack's, admittedly jaw-dropping, banality. The EU really is a piece of shit, and Margot is an evangelist for Satan himself. So, can we please leave now?

Unio Europaea delenda est. And McConnell can fuck off an' all.

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...