Thursday, August 31, 2006

Via Chris, all religions are stupid, but some are more stupid than others.
ISLAMIC clerics in eastern India have ruled that a woman divorced by her husband in a fit of drunkenness can remarry him only after she takes another husband for a day.

Ershad, a rickshaw puller, uttered "talaq", or divorce, three times earlier this month while he was drunk, and when news leaked out in their village in the eastern Orissa state, the clerics said the couple must separate.

Fucking hellski.

Fat fuckwit speaks out

The Safety ElephantThe Safety Elephant (Ret): "Tony Blair is the Devil!" God, how many more times must I call this man a cunt before he does the decent thing and drowns himself in a septic tank, eh?

Charlie "Fat Cunt" Clarke still hasn't forgiven Chuckles for giving him the old heave-ho, eh?

This post will be continued. In style...

God help the EU

Nosemonkey draws your humble Devil's attention to Angela Merkel's stupid suggestion that God should have a place in any EU Constitution.
"[the constitution] should be connected to Christianity and God, as Christianity has forged Europe in a decisive way"

As Colman points out, this means
"we should include references to absolute monarchy, discrimination against women and anti-semitism, all of which have also forged Europe in decisive ways."

Yup, quite apart from the fact that the Turks and the Muslims of the Parisian banlieus and southern Belgium are going to be thrilled with that one.
Why must we always have such second-rate minds in charge of working out where to go with the EU project?

I would have thought that that was obvious: because only second rate idiots who wish to continue drawing enormous salaries whilst being able to dodge any actual decision-making—shoving the responsibility onto the EU (and the unelected Commission*) instead—would ever want to get involved in any case.

Master Nosemonkey then continues in the comments:
However, generalising massively, some speculation on the off-chance that it does get spotted:

The usual anti-EU types who generally kick up a fuss when the constitution raises its head again will likely get confused by this, as there's usually a fair correlation between being anti-EU and (very) loosely high church Tory.

I am happy to disappoint.

In the meantime, M'Lord Cramner has a lengthy and very coherent post on this very subject: I suggest that you read it all.

* And look at who we've sent to the Commission in the last few years: Kinnock and Mandelson. One an embarrassing and tedious failure, the other a deeply corrupt, mendacious cunt (the latter the Commissioner for Trade but who has no grasp of economics). We send our fools, knaves and general embarrassments to the EU: do you think that the other EU states do anything different?
This from Guido is a fucking classic. Looks like Spam's efforts to be "inclusive" are having the opposite effect, no? I mean, he's lost my vote and party subscription: how many more...?

Does anyone see any future parallels with another political party which, despite being in power, has almost its lowest membership ever...?

The Childsnatcher

Quote of the day from the poor, little Greek boy whilst discussing the latest iniquities of the children's database.
Kidnap Jordan's baby? Why? Just to watch him bump into stuff?


Oh, and on the subject of the database, fuck off, Chuckles, you barbarian shitstick. Let's face it, I'd be more worried if I ever thought that the fucker was going to work, but there is a more serious point here, and I'm afriad that it involves 1984 again.

In that novel—which, until this lot got in, we were still able to dismiss loftily as pure paranoia—the Party of Big Brother always made a conscious effort to ensure that the children were got at very young. They were encouraged to spend the majority of their very early years in Polly's wonderful Sure Start State-sponsored nurseries, and were then actively encouraged to join various Party youth leagues and other such organisations.

The specific aim of this was to break the bond between children and parents; the children were encouraged to see Big Brother and The Party as mother, father and siblings. This not only made it much easier to encourage children to report their parents for thought-crimes—even those committed whilst asleep, as happens to Winston's unfortunate neighbour, Parsons—but also made it natural for them, when adult, to submit to the will of The Party.

So, upon finding that ID Cards and the Database State are rather unpopular amongst the adult generation—well, amongst those who have thought about it for more than five minutes—what should your move be? Obviously, you go for the children first; further, you do so on a pretext that will appeal to the latent parent in everyone, that desire to protect the children. Won't somebody think of the chiiiildren? How could anyone stand up against the Children's Database when it is brought in to save them from evil abusers?

There might even be a bit of a furore were, say, The Conservatives, as the next government, to decide to abolish it; the adult Database they have pledged to abolish, but the Kiddies one? Tricky. So, even were NuLabour out of power for a little while, by the time that they had got back in, they would have a whole generation of young adults who are used to being tagged, tracked and monitored wherever they go. And then, of course, it is so much easier to phase the same system in for adults.

So very, very easy...

Perhaps I am crediting the architects of NuLabour with too much forethought: but then, if I can think of it, I am sure that the thought may well have occurred to Chuckles and all of his merry friends. How long before we see those slogans, or soundbites like them, lining the streets...
    We must make war to have peace. Indeed. The Party was fond of eternal war. Who are we fighting this week? Serbia Eurasia or Islam Eastasia?

    An argument that is made by Lefties of my acquaintance and in The Guardian (and others) frequently: after all, the freedom to work when and as you like is also the freedom to starve because you can't work. And the government does enjoy telling us how much we can work, eh? You can only work forty hours a week because you need a work/family balance; but, you reply, I have no family. Well, you must breed, say the government, or our pension system will collapse...

    Do I need to elaborate on how well our state-funded schools have taught this to generations of children? It doesn't matter what you know, just what you feel, for if you act on what you feel then you are being true to yourself and that must be right, mustn't? After all, knowledge is just stuffy and stupid and, oh, it was all such a long time ago...

Paranoid? Maybe I am but I repeat: if I can think it so can those whom power has corrupted...
As Snafu so pertinently asks, had the roles been reversed, would Keith Davis have been given a desultory three years in jug? I severely fucking doubt it.

Mind you, with NuLabour's fucking stupid and ridiculously rigid sentencing tariffs, one will probably find out that the judge had no choice. A bit like fucking Lando Calrissian.

He's innocent, you cunts

Via Timmy, what the fucking shit is this all about?
AN IRAQI minicab driver cleared yesterday of making videos of potential terrorist targets was immediately placed under a Home Office control order to restrict his movements, The Times has learnt.

Rauf Abdullah Mohammed, who came to Britain as an asylum-seeker six years ago, was found not guilty of four charges of making or possessing a video of potential terrorist targets, including Big Ben and the London Eye.

What the fuck is going on? In case these bastards haven't realised, Big Ben and The London Eye are fucking tourist attractions; videoing them may be crass but it's hardly a criminal offence for god's sake! Are they going to start arresting all the tourists that video or take still pictures of all of our monuments? Perhaps they are going to hang a massive fucking banner on Big Ben saying, "strictly no video or photography allowed".

Still, despite having been through the trauma of being dragged through the courts, at least the poor guy was found innocent so he can now go back to his job, right?
Minutes after the verdict, he was placed under a control order which allows the Home Office to restrict where he goes and who he meets. An order can also curb access to telephones and the internet and permit police to enter a suspect’s home at any time.

What the hell is going on? As Curious Hamster once said, 1984 was a warning, NOT A FUCKING INSTRUCTION MANUAL, you cunts.

I mean, what the fucking hell is next? Are the government going to start offering cash rewards for children dobbing in their parents? Or do this shower of shits expect the wee scallies to do it gratis, for Britain and The Party. Probably.
Civil liberties groups last night criticised the issuing of the control order for Mr Rauf, saying that it amounted to a secretive, watered-down version of a conviction.

Well, actually it is the Home Office deliberately removing the freedoms of a man who has been found innocent of doing anything at all. Fuck me, it's a bit fucking late for 1984 to be a warning: we are living in it already. And the word from those defenders of freedom, The Conservative Party? Erm... hello? Oh, no, they are completely fucking silent, as per fucking usual.
The prosecution alleged that [Mr Rauf] had toured London, listening to music that praised martyrdom and speaking of killing Western leaders, including Tony Blair.

Well, I guess that last makes me a fucking terrorist then: god knows I've called for Chuckles Blair's head on a fucking silver platter enough times. I've also talkied about hanging him, shooting him in the face and raping him to death with a broken champagne bottle. I know, let's repeat that one, shall we?
Tony Blair: I want this man beaten, shat on and anally raped to death with a broken champagne bottle. He is not fit to live, by virtue of the fact that he is an unmitigated cunt, fuckwit, charlatan, bastard, evil fascist piece of shit with all of the virtues and morals of a dog turd. Fuck him, fuck his face and fuck his fucking boot of a wife.

Chuckles is an arse of the very first water; no, let me rephrase that. Because, you see, to call him an arse is to imply that he is merely an incompetent, rather than the actively dangerous, fascist shitbag that he actually is. You are as dangerous as a cunt with teeth, a bastard charletan piece of fascist dog-poo and a bugger. Now, will you do us all a favour and FUCK OFF! And take John "bulldog licking piss off a nettle" Reid with you; I hate the both of you.

And not in a good way.

Don't get me wrong: when you read the rest of the article, there are some fairly dodgy things about Mr Rauf, including the fact that—having failed his driving test, he applied for a license in his brother's name—but that does not warrant a control order of any fucking sort.

Chuckles, you fucking retard, read my fucking lips: innocent until proven guilty. Have you got that, you fucking chimp?

Bad Review

I was fortunate enough to see only one stinker of a show during the Fringe; so, here, for posterity, is the review that I have submitted.
A-Haunting We Will Go

If you have ever seen Four Weddings And A Funeral, you may remember when – in response to the crass couple singing saccharine songs in the church – Gareth is seen grimacing and hugging his head in frustration at the awfulness of it all. Believe me, on watching this stultifying, badly-acted shocker I nearly did the same: only my professional politeness – and the sparsity of the audience – stopped me from doing so.

A-Haunting We Will Go was billed as a full-length mystery-comedy and, believe me, I felt the full length of it. The story is based around the hoary old chestnut of someone vowing to stay alone overnight in a haunted old inn, wherein one of the three sisters who owned it was killed. Naturally, the "top TV producer" is not alone and as each new character cliché – the common-as-muck-but-good-at-heart kidnappers and their posh victim, the lost student, the psychic gypsy and her dippy but "sensitive" daughter, the grumpy gold-digging caretaker – was wheeled on I felt like doing some murdering myself; I laughed instead but not, I suspect, for the reasons that the actors wanted me to.

Naturally there was a twist in the tail: it was, in fact, a pitch for a TV show. This ludicrous substitute for the "it was all a dream!" gambit did make the hackneyed characters a little more forgivable, but was such a heinous cliché in itself that I felt like throwing things at the stage. Preferably a brace of grenades.

All of this might have been played as a simply hilarious take on the old murder mystery had anyone on stage seemed like they actually cared one jot. In the programme, nearly all of the biographies earnestly assured us that many of the actors wanted to go to drama school: with one single exception, all I can suggest is that none of them waste the audition fees. Methinks a job in Customer Services – where everyone will expect them to act like zombies – might be a better career path.

Needless to say, I awarded it no stars; I would have awarded minus stars except that it was relatively cheap (for those punters who had to pay)...

The Tag-A-Book Day

I've been tagged by MatGB, the bastard; since I feel that I must fulfill my obligations, here is the Book Tag.

1. One book that changed your life - the hardest question first.
Changed my life? Tricky. I don't think that any book has changed my life, as such. Erm... I'll go with Lord of the Rings on the grounds that it opened up the idea of a fantasy world with a plausible grounding (the languages, etc.). There have been other books that have done it better since I first read LotR over 20 years ago, but this trilogy remains a milestone.

2. One book that you've read more than once
One book? I reread many, many books over and over again. But, I shall go with Iain M Banks's Use Of Weapons; Zakalwe is one of the coolest characters ever written.

3. One book that you'd want on a desert island
Ah, well, I'm going to cheat again. It's not one book, it is the Alms For Oblivion series by Simon Raven. Corruption and venality in high places; every single character is, in some way, rather unpleasant—usually vain, selfish or sickenly sanctimonious—but you know that they would be immense fun at a cocktail party. Alternatively, George MacDonald Fraser's Flashman series would also be choice...

4. One book that made you laugh
The book that makes me laugh more than any other is Lucky Jim by Kingsley Amis. It is the sequence where the hero has burned cigarette holes in everything that really gets me...

5. One book that made you cry
I am a real softy; there are quite a few books and films that make me cry; but, without doubt it is The Amber Spyglass (Phillip Pullman) is the one that gets me every time. I would never want to have to make that choice but I can picture myself doing so and the thought of it guts me.

6. One book that you wish you had written
I would love to have written The Complete Molesworth; unfortunately, Geoffrey Willans and Ronald Searle got there first, chiz chiz*.

7. One book you wish had never been written
Is there such a thing? Oh, yes, those books written in ITA, the reading system which set my spelling back about 8,000,000 years...

8. One book that you are reading at the moment
I'm reading Iain Banks's The Business but I have just finished (for the billionth time) Donna Tartt's The Secret History, a book which I simply cannot recommend enough.

9. One book that you've been meaning to read
Ummm. This is actually rather pertinent as my mother gave me Book Tokens for my birthday; I would like to read David Mitchell's Black Swan Green.

10. Five others that you’d like to do this
Five? Five! For fuck's sake, you want me to think now? Erm...
1. The P-G.
2. Bookdrunk.
3. Deogolwulf.
4. The Longrider.
5. Dr Crippen.

* A chiz is a swiz or swindle as any fule kno.
Via The Fairie Lady...

Your World View

You are a happy, well-balanced person who likes people and is liked by others.
You question whether many conventional views on morality are valid under all circumstances.
You are essentially a content person.

Sometimes, you consider yourself a little superior.
You are moral by your own standards.
You believe that morality is what best suits the occasion.

Hmmm... "Consider myself superior"? I am, damn it...

Wednesday, August 30, 2006

How it really was

Right For Scotland comments on Jim "the Drone" Sheridan's resignation letter.
In conclusion can I say that your domestic agenda has transformed the lives of millions of our citizens and I am proud of the achievements our government has secured.

Shit hospitals that will kill you. Shit schools that turn out ignoramuses and cover it up with pointless exams that everyone expects to get easier every year. Merger of the Scottish regiments instead of actually recruiting more soldiers. Devolution that is threatening to tear the country apart. Botched Lords reforms and corruption of that House for Party Financial gain. Automatic remission for prisoners. The minimum wage, a tax on the small business and a restraint on our productivity. 80 odd tax rises including keeping the personal allowance static while implementing the minimum wage thereby ensuring that millions of people in menial jobs paid a lot more tax to Gordon. Peter Mandelson. Engaging a sexual predator as Deputy Prime Minister. I could go on but that is enough for 30 seconds banging at a keyboard. Nothing to be proud of Jim - not a thing.

No, no, no, RfS: before Chuckles and his merry men came along, everyone in the country was starving and the country was on the brink of destruction; everyone smoked 200 fags a day, drank themselves into a stupor before mainlining some smack, beating their children to death with a pint glass, medical care was unknown, pensions unraided unheard of and all poofs were ritually hanged from the nearest (unlit) lampost. Surely you know this? Until 1997, Britain was in the period that we know as The Dark Ages.

Isn't that how it goes, Chuckles, you shitty cuntbag?

Tuesday, August 29, 2006

By the way, although your humble Devil is now back (with a vengeance), he is a little out of practise and still knackered; thus his usual slick prose and easy swearing might take a little while to remanifest themselves...

UPDATE: a couple of pics of the Devil at the Bedlam end of Fringe party (thanks to Chris Fleming)...

During the evening: back-combed and made-up in the Bedlam Café...

The next morning, on our way to have a big fried breakfast. Nice view down North Bridge...

Our next morning traditional of lying down on George IV Bridge at 7.30 in the morning...

IHT and the Reptile

Conservative Party Reptile has an eminently sensible solution to the vexed question of Inheritance Tax.
So, to draw the sting from the issue altogether, by solving the problem of fiscal drag, as well as the issue of one over-large asset, the Conservatives should propose to waive IHT on primary dwellings. This exemption is already in place for other taxes (CGT on sale for example) and would at a stroke take the majority of estates out of the band, without it being easy to slur it as a tax cut for the rich. Easy really.

And meanwhile, over at Chris Dillow's place, there are some very sensible comments; the first is from Sam.
The big iniquity of IHT to me has always seemed to be that it introduces a tax on something which is usually untaxed unless death is involved - the act of giving someone some money.

The question is not "why should you pay more tax if your dad gives you a job than if he gives you an inheritance", it's "why should you pay more tax if your dad gives you money when he dies than if he gives you money when he's alive?"

Quite. And, naturally, Perry de Havilland chips in with a typically pointed comment.
I dislike the very idea of taxing the bereaved, but then I despise most of what the state does anyway so that is probably to be expected. As for how IHT incentivises people, I do not think it is should be the role of such an inherently cack handed institution (the state) to be trying to incentivise people *at all* regarding how to manage their economic affairs one way or another. The gall of an institution that prints fiat money, distorts the economy and deficit spends telling me how to run my affairs is just too preposterous.

This is, of course, exactly true and it is the reason that I so disagree with Master Dillow and others on this question.

The point is that this here interweb seems to be filled with people who are advocating the control of others and one of the ways that they would seek to do this is through tax manipulation. Very few people seem to consider tax as simply as method of allowing a government just enough money to do the tasks that we, as individuals, are unable to do.

Tax should not be used as a method of control: the government have no right to our money and they certainly have no right to control the way in which we live our lives (other than ensuring that we do not impinge on the freedoms of others). Tax should be spread as thinly and evenly as possible throughout the entire population; and the fairest tax is on labour since we all have to do it; or, rather, the fairest tax is on income, since we all have to have it to live. IHT is effectively a tax on capital and, as such, effectively discourages saving.

Naturally, Chris contends that abolishing IHT would discourage saving. This is, of course, horseshit based on pure economic theory and disregarding human psychology.
What we need, surely, is to end this "summat for nowt" culture, and to encourage work and savings. That means cuts in income tax should take priority.

Well, up to a point, Lord Copper. I agree about abolishing this "summat for nowt" culture, i.e. the Welfare State. The point is that those who have a lot of money tend to be those who have worked, saved and carefully husbanded their money over a number of generations: they then tend to instill those same values in their offspring. For instance, I have an expectation of a reasonably large inheritance when my father dies: however, I am still the almost only one amongst my friends to have a pension (despite nearly all of them being both older and better paid than myself).

If you reduce income tax for the poor are they going to rush out and put that extra cash into a pension? No; I guarantee that the vast majority of them will simply splash out on cigarettes, beer and more Lottery tickets. The poorest in our society actually tend to be those who spend everything that they have rather than saving it: that is why they are poor unto the nth generation.

If this were not the case, we wouldn't need to have the vast welfare system that we do.
With angels on the take
and gangsters in the yard,
Hey, don't the wars come easy,
Hey, and don't the peace come hard.

The Big Ones Get Away—Buffy Sainte Marie.

Thank the lord for Kofi

Corrupt UN Head, Kofi Annan, is posturing like a cunt again.
United Nations chief Kofi Annan has called on Israel to lift its blockade of Lebanon and urged Hezbollah to free two captured Israeli soldiers.

Both organisations have utterly ignored the fuckwit, one would imagine.
The UN secretary general said the truce had created a chance for a "long-term ceasefire and a long-term peace".

Is he even living on the same planet as the rest of us? Or is his definition of "long-term" considerably different from mine?
Mr Annan indicated that the issue of Hezbollah's weapons should be resolved through national agreement inside Lebanon.

Well, yes. Unless, of course, Hezbollah continue to fire rockets into Israel, in which case it is no longer an internal administrative affair. If the Lebanese government had had either the will or the martial power to disarm Hezbollah, as per UN Resolution 1559, then none of this would have happened in the first place.
Israel is looking for better guarantees that Hezbollah will not rearm and has said the blockade will remain in place until an arms embargo is implemented against Hezbollah.

Or, rather, they are looking for any guarantees.
Sheikh Nasrallah said he would not have ordered the soldiers' capture, which triggered Israel's blistering offensive, had he known it would lead to such a response.

Well, ain't that cute? It would rather imply that Israel made the correct response though (provided, of course, that you think that a government's first duty is to protect its citizens. Which it is).
Mr Olmert's critics are likely to accuse him of trying to dodge criticism, but he says there is no time for a full blown investigation.

Speaking in Haifa, he admitted to "failures" during the offensive, but defended his decision to launch the campaign.

The responsibility was "entirely mine", he said.

And, evidently, Olmert did the correct thing: Nasrullah has just confirmed that.

Anyone seen an elephant?

ChickenYoghurt has a typically elegant post up about the whole smoking on cartoons and obesity furore.
Let’s have a bit of responsibility, shall we? Sure, cram yourself daft with buns on the sofa until you can’t fit through doors, like some kind of fashioned-from-lard ship in a bottle. Smoke until your mouth looks like a camel’s arse and your lungs resemble a pair of Odour Eater insoles. Drink until your liver is so tough it would choke Hannibal Lecter. But don’t blame anybody else but yourself if, rather than going out in a blaze of glory, you go out in an ooze of McFlurry.

The trouble is that throughout the whole post there is a massive elephant-sized hole which is, at least to me, desperately obvious.
We’ve been patronised and treated with contempt practically ever since we left the womb.

Well, that is fair enough; but by whom?
Whether it be from the farty physics teacher disdainfully chucking your F- back at you, the bank manager trying to suppress his giggles as he reviews your loan request, or the narcissistic boss who makes you feel like you’ve asked for a go on his mother rather than for a day off.

Ah. OK.
Add to that Prime Ministers and Presidents who, with a straight face, will tell you the only way to save our cherished freedoms is to give them away, and is it any wonder some people just give up? That people expect Somebody Else to do It for them? That those Somebody Elses then take the piss is only to be expected, really.

Hmmm, yes I think I see now; it is those nasty individuals that have induced this lack of responsibility in us, yes? Or could it be... the system? I have argued on a number of occasions that it is the Welfare State itself which is a major cause of this lack of responsibility; in fact, The Longrider summed it up very well.
So what went wrong? Why did my generation make such awful whingeing parents who demand that the state do everything for them, including thinking and raising their children? That Jack Glassett is on the point of surgery to resolve a lifestyle problem tells of something going horribly, horribly wrong. And, it isn’t just obesity, it’s everything. A problem these days seems to be appended with that statutory whine; “the government needs to do something”. Like these people have so little self worth, so little sense of personal responsibility that they can’t do anything for themselves. After all, Jack’s diet and exercise regime is his parents’ responsibility, not the state’s.

But, of course, for our very own ChickenYoghurt—who has made no secret of his Left leanings—to admit that it is the system itself which is at fault is a step too far. Instead, his fire is aimed squarely at the awful people who inhabit the system—with the exception of his "narcissistic boss": he's obviously had worse bosses than I—and even then he cannot bring himself to point out that, because of the way that our society works, it is always going to be the dregs, the failures, the self-aggrandising and the cunts that inhabit that system.

So, has anyone seen an elephant around?

Goodbye justice

Via Chris, it seems that the EU are now after our justice system. Well, actually, they always have been, the rancid cunts, but now they are making a very concerted effort to change our system to one of their choosing. This Scepter'd Isle has everything that you need to know.
But I have some serious reservations about the discussions that will take place today and beyond. Not least because as the BBC goes on to remind people that, "the European Commission is currently trying to persuade governments to give up their veto in the area of criminal justice, arguing that it will help in the fight against terrorism."

Opportunist power grab
To me this is more about an opportunist attempt to increase the power of the EU than it is about combatting terror. I just do not agree that giving up control of our judicial system and being forced to adopt European models of justice is in any way justified by the threat we face.

Well, quite. Go and read the whole thing.

And, at the risk of being accused of monomania, can I just point out—again—that there is only one reasonable party that is advocating withdrawal from this mass-murdering, unelected bunch of corrupt, useless, hypocritical cunts. A vote for any other is a vote for the continued erosion of our sovereignty, our democracy and our ability to act in our own interests.

Again, I shall make this plain; if you vote for any party that is against withdrawal from the EU, then you are voting for the subsumation of Britain to a foreign power: you are a traitor and should be hanged in public whilst people throw cowshit at your twitching body.

I would like all of you to think about this every night before you go to bed: "if I vote Labour, LibDem or Tory then I am a traitor—to the Crown, to Britain and to the very concept of democracy—and I should be beaten like a pinata. For starters."

Sweet dreams.

Sunday, August 27, 2006

Yet more Fringes of society

I have decided that I shall now adopt Tim Fitzhigham's epithet for Princess Toni: that's right, from now on, he's "Chuckles" Blair...

In other news, a bit of polite... ahem... advice for punters at the Fringe:
  1. In the name of god, if you must walk like an arthritic tortoise, please do not take up the entire pavement/stairway/passage. Please leave a gap for those of us who know where we are going to get through.

  2. If you are going to stop to talk to friends, do not stand right in the fucking path of people needing to get in and out, nor right in a doorway. This goes for staff too, particularly those at the Gilded Balloon.

  3. Bar managers: if the queue at the bar is five deep, do not send two of your barstaff on their breaks at that time. Wait until the crush has finished and people are not saying, loudly, "how the hell do we get served in this place": they are not being difficult, but they have been waiting quarter of an hour or more to get served.

  4. If you do not have the good grace to arrive at a show on time, do at least have the courtesy to SHUT THE FUCK UP whilst you are coming, late, into the auditorium. If you don't want to hear what anyone is saying, do everyone else the favour of fucking off.

  5. Do not make comments to your mates throughout the show: I have come to listen to the people onstage, not some fat fuck from Fife who won't shut the fuck up.

  6. Directors: if your show is shit and your performers can't act, please, just don't bring the show up at all. If you do, please do at least have the courtesy to warn everyone that this is the case on your publicity. It's very nice that your Sixth Form pupils want to come and perform at the Festival, but I don't think that it is fair to fleece people for £8 to indulge your wards' egos.

Other than the annoyances above, it's been a great Festival...

It's off to the Bedlam party tonight, which invariably lasts until about 7am, at which point we all go and lie down in the the deserted road outside the theatre. Gosh, we are all so kerrrrrazy...

And then The Kitchen will be back in action!
Proof, if proof were needed, that just because you can make the world's most tedious video and unload it to YouTube, it doesn't mean that you should...

Wednesday, August 23, 2006

Stuff the Turkey, Polly

Via Prodicus (who has taken her apart quite nicely), I read—somewhat belatedly—this article by her royal Toynbee-ness. Needless to say, it is the usual spite-filled bollocks, but one thing stands out particularly (and I post it here because CiF is not allowing posts on that thread).
If they join the union, will Britain again be one of the few to let their citizens work here immediately? And what of Turkey next?

It would be a disaster for the EU to refuse entry altogether to countries that need help to grow, especially Turkey, a Muslim nation we need to include.

Really? We need to include Turkey? Would that be this Turkey?
A survey by a university in Turkey has shown almost 40% support for the practice of "honour killing".

The results come days after a court in Istanbul gave a life sentence for the murder of a girl by her brothers for giving birth to a child out of wedlock.

It questioned 430 people, most of them men. When asked the appropriate punishment for a woman who has committed adultery, 37% replied she should be killed.

Twenty-five percent said that she deserved divorce, and 21% that her nose or ears should be cut off.

The survey group was small but the results are a reminder that "honour killing" - a practice where women are murdered for allegedly bringing shame on their family - still has significant support in parts of Turkey.

No thanks, Polly: I think we can do without more vicious Muslims who support this most disgusting—it's air of justification, the craven appeal to "honour", makes it so—of practices, thank you very much.

But thanks for offering this ray of light:
Another big migration could imperil the EU itself.

Here's hoping.

Free Jack Idema Blogburst 23/08

Although illegally-imprisoned U.S. Special Forces soldier Jack Idema and his compatriot Captain Brent Bennett are now held under the protection of their friends in the Northern Alliance, it's always worth remembering how different things were for them in the months prior to their first trial back in 2004.

While the terrorists we capture are treated to lemon chicken, in the three months between his arrest in June 2004 and the start of his trial in September, Jack and his men were subjected to the following, appalling treatment:
Shortly after their arrest, they were subjected to varying degrees of torture and interrogation, apparently determined by rank. Jack Idema was repeatedly beaten by, and in the presence of- Amrullah at NDS Headquarters, as was Lieutenant Rasuli. A palace official was personally aware of and authorizing, at a minimum, Idema‚s initial torture at NDS Headquarters by Amrullah, with FBI agents in close proximity and directing the interrogation.
During the following days and nights Idema was tortured with boiling water, starvation, threats of death, and assault with various implements (such as wire cables and rubber whips), resulting in broken ribs, a separated sternum, torn rotator cuffs, haemorrhaged eyes, multiple concussions, lacerations, contusions, and bruises. Although the U.S. Embassy later had medical reports indicating the extent of the torture, Sandra Ingram, Assistant U.S. Consul DOS Kabul, ordered the reports rewritten to tone down the extent of the injuries. During the torture Idema was restrained by Taliban iron leg bars and American Handcuff Company restraints (Serial Number # 177709) supplied by the U.S. Department of Justice. Further, reportedly FBI personnel were well aware of the ongoing torture and did nothing to intercede or stop it, and actually encouraged it.
Along with the physical abuses suffered by Jack and his men, they were also denied a fair trail. The judge, a 'former' member of the Taliban who had previously amused himself by sentencing women to death-by-stoning for adultery, announced that Afghan law was only 'a guideline', and that he intended to try Idema using the Taliban's legal system. What this meant, in essence, was that Jack and Brent were denied anything even approaching a fair trail, as is illustrated by the following:
Bennett finally got a female Afghan lawyer in September 2004, ten days before the final verdict. She met Bennett ONE TIME for 20 MINUTES. She promptly informed Bennett that if she represented him Bakhtyari [the trial judge] would not allow her to speak because she was a woman, and he did not normally allow women to appear in his court without a Burka. Then she dropped the real bombˆ if she appeared in court for Bennett, she would be murdered.
Inside the courtroom the abuses of due process continued:
Jack read the law about being able to call a witness and Bakhtyari said, „ok, call your witness.‰ Fatah handed a secret note up once again. This time to Prosecutor Dawari, who read it, smiled, then handed it to Bakhtyari. The Taliban Judge read the note, chuckled, then said, „We will save calling witnesses until the next hearing and you can do it then, this hearing is finished.‰ After four more hearings, and a verdict of guilty, the defence had still not been allowed to call a single witness or ask a single question of any of the terrorists who said the were hung upside down at the first „press conference‰ which Bakhtyari later called a hearing.
Clearly, the verdict in this mockery of a trial was a forgone conclusion: Jack and his men were found guilty and imprisoned alongside the very terrorists they'd been hunting three months earlier.

Once behind bars, and out of the media spotlight, Jack was the victim of almost a dozen assassination attempts during prisoner 'riots'. Indeed, if it hadn't been for his allies in the Northern Alliance entering the prison and moving him to the relative safety of the annex he and Brent now occupy, he would likely have died in late 2004.

As things stand, Jack and Brent still rely on friends in the U.S. military to smuggle clean drinking water to them -- The U.S. State Department refuse to offer them any aid, and threaten anyone caught assisting them with disciplinary measures.

So what can we do? Well, anyone reading this with their own blog can sign up for the weekly Free Jack Idema Blogburst by emailing Cao or Rottweiler Puppy for details. I'd urge everyone to do this, as we're still terribly short on takers. If you want to know more about the story, Cao's Blog has a large section devoted to Jack Idema. There's also a timeline here, and, of course, a huge amount of information is available over at SuperPatriots, without whose work none of us would have learned about Jack's story.

You can also contact the following people and make your feelings known:

Secret US EMBASSY Fax: ˆ 301-560-5729 (Local US Fax: Goes RIGHT TO Ambassador)
c/o US Ambassador Ronald Neuman
6180 Kabul Place
Dulles, VA 20189-6180

US Consul Russell Brown ˆ 011-93-70201908 (Fired)

US Consul Addie Harchik- 011-93-70201908 (denied them water and mail at Thanksgiving)

US Embassy Translator Wahid ˆ new ˆ 011-93-70201902

US Embassy Translator Bashir Mommanˆ 011-93-70201923

US Consul (friend of Jack's Now fired) Dawn Schrepelˆ 011-93-70201908

Embassy of Afghanistan (Good guys, Northern Alliance)
2341 Wyoming Avenue, NW
Washington, DC 20008
Ph: 202-483-6410, Fax: no. 202-483-6488

Ambassador Massoud Khalili (wounded with Massoud)
Islamic State of Afghanistan
Embassy of Afghanistan
New Delhi, India

H.E. Said Tayeb JAWAD (Afghan Ambassador- powerful in US)
Embassy of Afghanistan in Washington
2341 Wyoming Avenue, N.W.
Washington, D.C. 20008
Tel: (+1-202) 483 6414
Fax: (+1-202) 483 9523

Mr. Jahed Hamrah, Consul General (pro-Taliban)
360 Lexington Avenue,
11th Floor New York,
New, York, NY 10017
Tel.: (+1-212) 972 2276 or 972 2277
Fax: (+1-212) 972 9046

Honorable Donald H. Rumsfeld
Secretary of Defense
1000 Defense Pentagon ˆ Room # 3E880
Washington, DC 20301-1000
Ph: (703) 692-7100
Fax: (703) 697-9080

Lt General William Boykin
Deputy Undersecretary
of Defense for Intelligence
1800 Defense Pentagon ˆ Room # 3E836
Washington, DC 20301
Ph: (703) 697-0170
Private Fax: (703) 697-9080

Stephen Cambone
Principle Deputy Secretary for Intelligence
1800 Defense Pentagon ˆ Room # 3E
Washington, DC 20310-0100

General Peter J. Shoomaker
Chief of Staff, Department of the Army
200 Army Pentagon ˆ Room # 3E528
Washington, DC 20310-0200
Ph: (703) 695-2077 / Fax: (703) 614-5268

The Honorable John D. Negroponte
Director National Intelligence
New Executive Office Building
725 17th Street, N.W., Room 4203
Washington, DC 20503

The Committee
On Homeland Security
U.S. House of Representatives
Washington, DC 20515

Chairman Peter Hoekstra
Permanent Select Committee on Intelligence
H-405, U.S. Capitol
Washington, DC 20515-6415;
Office: (202) 225-4121 / Fax: (202) 225-1991
Toll Free: (877) 858-9040

Independent Expert of the Commission on Human Rights
On the Situation of Human Rights in Afghanistan
Office of the High Commissioner for Human Rights
CH-1211 Geneva 10
Ph: +41(0)22 917 97 27 Fax: +41(0)22 917 90 18

Senator Steven Saland (Jack's Rep and Neighbor)
9 Jonathan Lane
Poughkeepsie, NY 12603

Senator Elizabeth Dole (Jack's Rep)
United States Senate
310 New Bern Avenue, Suite 122
Raleigh, NC 27601
Ph: 919.856.4630
Fax: 919.856.4053

Senator Elizabeth Dole (Jack's Rep)
United States Senate
555 Dirksen Office Building
Washington, DC 20510
Ph: 202.224.6342
Fax: 202.224.1100

Senator Richard Burr (of Interest)
United States Senate
217 Russell Senate Office Building
Washington, DC 20510
Phone: (202) 224-3154 / Fax: (202) 228-2981

Senator Bill Nelson (in the fight on Jack's Side)
United States Senate
Hart Senate Office Building
Room 716
Washington, DC 20510
Phone: 202-224-5274 / Fax: 202-228-2183
FL Fax 407-872-7165

Senator Dianne Feinstein (Bennett's Representative)
United States Senate
Hart Office Building, Room 331
Washington, D.C. 20510
(202) 224-3841

Representative Mike McIntyre (Jack's Representative)
United States Congress
2437 Rayburn House Office Building
Washington, DC 20515
Phone: (202) 225-2731 / Fax (202) 225-5773

Governor Arnold Schwarzenegger (reference Captain Bennett- CA citizen)
State Capitol Building
Sacramento, CA 95814
Phone: 916-445-2841 / Fax: 916-445-4633

Finally, PLEASE NOTE: The SuperPatriots and Jack images on this site are used with WRITTEN COPYRIGHT PERMISSION and any use by any third party is subject to legal action by SuperPatriots.US

Technorati Search for Jack Idema

The Free Jack Idema Blogroll:

The Pink Flamingo Bar & Grill
The Lone Voice
Kender's Musings
Irate Nate
The Devil's Kitchen
Cao's Blog
Big Dog's Weblog
Theodore's World
Rottweiler Puppy
Making Headlines
Right For Scotland
Freedom Folks
The City Troll
Sacramento Boxing
Causes of Interest
Concatenation of Events
Stuck On Stupid
The Daily Blogster

Tuesday, August 22, 2006

The system of law

Timmy at the ASI on the difference between Common and Roman law.
We've developed, over the centuries, a system of law (usually called the Common Law system) in which the general presumption is that as long as there is no law specifically against the activity you undertake, it is legal. This is in contrast to the so called Roman Law (sometimes called Continental or Napoleonic) ideal that you may only do those things which are specifically sanctioned by a positive law allowing you to do so.

We could deal with this by becoming a nation of scoff-laws which is how many of our European partners deal with this conundrum, or we could return to the Common Law ideal: the law is there solely to stop us from infringing upon the rights of others and to act as an arbitration system when such infringements are encountered.

The latter is the liberal, progessive and radical option, with the added bonus that if adopted we'd be able to fire many bureaucrats currently engaged in such futile rule-making. That the Nanny Staters, those who do not in fact know the meanings of the words liberal, radical or progressive, are in power and have been for some time is why such a simple solution will not, of course, be adopted.

Quite so.

Neil's straw man of the week

And, yup, it comes from the deeply dippy Neil Harding. First off, I would like to say that I hope that Neil was pissed when he wrote this post, because it is the biggest load of probably actionable drivel I have read in a long time.
It amazes me that when people (especially Tories) talk about the erosion of democracy in the Labour party they seem to forget that the Tory party has no democracy at all.

And here's our first straw man. We don't talk about the "erosion of democracy in the Labour party": we talk about the erosion of our parliamentary democracy by the Labour party, you fucking cretin.
They get a choice of two stooges put forward by their MPs and their conferences have been Nuremburg rallies since well, since Nuremburg rallies.

Accusing the Tories of being Nazis one sentence into a post must be some kind of a record for the fulfillment of Godwin's Law, musn't it? And, as The Nameless Tory ably points out, in terms of conservatism it would be difficult to find two people with a more different approach than Davis and Cameron.
Whatever you say about the declining influence of Labour's NEC, at least it gives a voice to members concerns, at least we have an NEC!

If the NEC has piss all influence, it seems rather pointless to crow about having one, doesn't it? For god's sake, boy, all it does is prove that Blair and his stooges have been able to subvert the Labour party democracy in precisely the same fucking way that they have bypassed our parliamentary procedures. The cunts.
Of course for most Tory members, the lack of democracy in their party is not a problem, since most of them don't believe in democracy anyway.

This is a simply astonishing claim: it isn't the Tories that I have met who have displayed totalitarian leanings. It is always the Lefties. "This isn't right, so we should make people do this, etc." is very much a Leftist cry.
For Labour party members who rightly fight for a bigger say in their party, it is a godsend for the Tory media who hypocritically exploit this to make Labour look authoritarian - it is all very convenient.

As opposed, of course, to the left wing press—and tedious little fuckwits in the blogosphere—who would sell their souls to Satan (and probably already have: I can't think of any other explanation for ZanuLabour's re-election) to keep Toni and Co. in government. Who cares how democratic the Labour party are?

The policies that the NuLabour have enacted whilst in power have been authoritarian; that is all that matters. I don't have to join any of the parties if I dislike their structure: unfortunately, I do have to obey the laws laid down by the government formed from whichever party.


How clever am you?

Via Nosemonkey, Matt T has worked out a system to equate your A-Level results with that which people gain today...
We've all been at a party or BBQ when some youngster (or their parents these days) starts to brag about their 5 A-grade A-levels (see picture to the left). You splutter, "but they were harder in my day!", and half-heartedly they agree, before continuing "but really Six A-levels, isn't that an achievement?". With today's results again showing a gain, the problem can only get worse.

What you were lacking was a way to quantify just how much easier they have got, and thus what grades you would have received if you were sitting them today.

Now in its second year, this handy ready-reckoner means the end to that situation, as it tells you exactly what your grades would be worth in today's debased currency.

Your humble Devil obtained 3 Bs (Biology, English Literature and Art & Design) and a D (fucking Chemistry) in 1995, which gives a total of 28 x 1.29 = 36.12 = 36. This means that I get uprated to 3As and a C! However, I also retook Chemistry in January 1996 and moved up to a C grade. Using the relevent multiplier takes that to 7.5 which, rounding up as one should, means that I did, in fact, get a B.

Therefore, by today's standards, your humble Devil is actually possessed of 3 As and a B. Hoorah!

As Nosemonkey says, can I change my CV now?

More bad news for Toynbee

In more bad news for that fucking idiot Toynbee (at whose latest article I shall direct my bile presently), Fjordman has a long article on the Brussels Journal about why Sweden ain't all it's cracked up to be.
Journalist and writer Kurt Lundgren notes on his blog that Sweden during the past five years has witnessed the largest mass-emigration in the country’s history since the peak of the immigration to the USA more than a century ago. The people leaving are primarily highly educated, native middle class Swedes. Common reasons cited for leaving are rampant crime and a sense of hopelessness and resignation over poor political leadership. At the same time, Sweden receives a large amount of immigrants from Third World and Islamic nations every year. Is this population replacement profitable for Sweden as a nation?

Lundgren states that it feels like
being spectator to a huge social experiment: The dismantling of an entire nation, one of the oldest in Europe, with all its traditions, its entire history for good or bad, the national awareness and the nation’s soul; all of this shall be eroded in a planned process. Nobody knows what will come instead of this, but there could be something monstrous emerging from this, something really terrifying...

Lundgren read a book about the collapse of the Soviet Union, and believes the system collapsed when the vision of reality presented by the authorities and the media became too different from the realities people experienced in their everyday lives. He fears the same thing is now about to happen in Sweden. What makes the situation particularly serious is the constant influx of unemployed and partly unemployable immigrants.
I don’t think even a tax rate of 64 percent will do to sustain the illusion of a welfare state. Maybe it will take 70 percent or more in the future. Perhaps before the year 2010 we will reach a point where the fantasy image we are presented no longer can be reconciled with what the people are experiencing. At that point, everything will fall apart, just like in the Soviet Union, but there will be a few more years of disintegration and chaos until we reach this point.

Fjordman believes—and provides a good deal of evidence and opinion to support this belief—that the Swedish Welfare State will collapse within a relatively short time. If this should happen, which country will Polly then hold up as the apotheothis of her favoured system of government? Will she shut the fuck up?

Or will she go into the garage, devoid of hope, and—running a hose through the front window from the exhaust—switch on the engine and go quietly into that dark night? We can but hope...

Moonbat: the original

His Imperial Highness indulges in a lovely fisking of an article by the original Moonbat.
One obvious question then arises.

“When did you stop taking your meds, George?”

That too.

Go read the whole thing: it's great stuff, as per usual.


I appear to have been tagged to do the Meme Of 3 by The Guttersnipe, damn his eyes. Now I am actually going to have to think about something.
  1. Things that scare me

    • My post (usually containing massive bills that I cannot pay)

    • People, when I'm not in the right mood

    • Disintegrating teeth

  2. People who make me laugh

    • My father

    • Jimmy Carr (a guilty pleasure)

    • H (not the one from Steps)

  3. Things I hate the most

    • NuLabour in general, but the Gobblin' King in particular

    • Aubergines

    • Wilfully ignorant people

  4. Things I don't understand

    • How even 21.6% of the electorate could have voted for NuLabour last time

    • Organic chemistry

    • How some people at the Fringe could possibly think that their show was worth bringing up

  5. Things I'm doing right now

    • Not getting myself sorted out as quickly as I'd like

    • Drinking in Fringe venues until the early hours of the morning with old, and new, friends

    • Writing up a backlog of reviews

  6. Things I want to do before I die

    • Do a job that I enjoy and get paid enough for

    • Visit Machu Picchu

    • Drive a steam train

  7. Things I can do

    • Design beautifully creepy artwork

    • Entertain people (when I'm in the mood)

    • Upgrade and troubleshoot Macs

  8. Ways to describe my personality

    • Darkly witty (though often crossing the line)

    • Addictive

    • Devious

  9. Things I can't do

    • Anything to do with DIY

    • Stop drinking once I start

    • Keep up to date with paperwork

  10. Things I think you should listen to

    • The Waterboys

    • Good advice

    • Me

  11. Things you should never listen to

    • Polly Toynbee

    • Anyone trying to sell you anything over the 'phone

    • Those voices in your head

  12. Things I'd like to learn

    • How to speak fluent French again

    • How to be more organised

    • The best way to skin a cat

  13. Favourite foods

    • Rare venison steak, lightly fried in wild rowan jelly

    • Kedgeree

    • A really good creme brulée made with custard, not fucking yoghurt (what my mother used to call "poor man's creme brulée")

  14. Beverages I drink regularly

    • Real ale

    • White or tawny port

    • Coffee

  15. Shows I watched as a kid

    • G-Force—Battle For The Planets

    • Champion The Wonder Horse

    • Bananaman

  16. People I'm tagging (to do this meme)

There; happy now? I'm not: one feels that one could have been more witty when once one has completed these things. Ah well...


I was mightily impressed when, a couple of days following my post about the future of UKIP, I was contacted by one of their high-ups. I can, of course, reveal neither who Mr X is nor the specific points that we discussed, but I was gratified to find that he generally agreed with my arguments.

A couple of lengthy emails have shuttled back and forth between us and I am more excited than ever about the direction that the party seems to be taking; their thinking accords pretty closely with my own, and it is also gratitfying to be asked for my opinion on those policy ideas. I will admit that I am flattered that someone who is influencial in party policy is taking on board the suggestions of someone who has only been a member for a matter of weeks.

I am also impressed that UKIP seem to be researching their policy ideas properly. I know this because I now have a draft copy of their tax policy document which, at the cursory glance which I have given it, seems to be eminently sensible. Obviously, I cannot reveal any real details, but let us just say that a Flat Tax and far higher Personal Allowance are on the agenda. For all of those that argue that a Flat Tax is more regressive than our current system, may I suggest that you have a look at Allan's excellent projections.
Tax Credits could be scrapped. Thousands of civil servants would no longer be required. Self Assessment tax forms would only have two numbers to fill out. And finally, the lefties would get what they always wanted: a proper progressive tax system that redistributes wealth to the low paid. Automatically. No forms to fill out. No “means tested” shite to put up with. You simply get to keep what you rightfully earned.

Surely that is better than what we have now?

I shall be studying the UKIP tax policy document much more closely and—as I have ben invited to do—relay back any comments or opinion on it. I shall also be drafting up further emails and posts on initiatives and how these might be marketed and implemented. In the end, although I am just an amateur I have a fairly good grasp of marketing techniques (having done that job for over 40 plays in ten years) and can, believe it or not, also write reasonably well (well enough to merit a Press Pass on the strength of a couple of reviews at this Fringe anyway).

Frankly, it is a buzz to be able to give my political opinion and have it listened to. More, it is a thrill to be actively involved in political policy and in a party that already seems to be attuned to my preferences. Not only is UKIP's central policy—that of leaving the EU—the most important political necessity facing this country, but also the party's economic and political philosophies—such as being implacably opposed to ID Cards, believing in a small state, encouraging enterprise, rewarding work whilst providing a safety-net for the truly disadvantaged, promoting personal freedom and responsibility and much more—accord so closely with my own that I could become positively evangelical about it.

Fraser Nelson, writing in The Scotsman, seems to think that UKIP are unelectable.
WHEN David Cameron is accused of alienating traditional Conservative voters with his tree-planting, hoodie-hugging and Israel-bashing, he has an easy riposte. Where are all these frustrated souls going to go? Defect to the high-taxing Liberal Democrats? Sign up to Gordon Brown's progressive consensus? Mr Cameron can reach out to the left as much as he likes if he has his party membership cornered. And this is why the UK Independence Party leadership contest is so potentially important.

UKIP has had a pretty miserable life since it was set up as the Anti-Federalist League in 1991. But two years ago, it delivered a shock to the Westminster consensus when it claimed 16% of the vote in the European Parliament elections - forcing the Lib Dems into fourth place. The question for the Tories is whether UKIP could, with the right leadership and message, manage this again.

It is not psephologically impossible. The British electorate is increasingly fed up with its three major parties, who are considering turning to state funding because the public is unwilling to supply the cash they need. Voters have shown themselves capable of defecting en masse to upstart parties - or, in the Dunfermline and West Fife by-election, switching from one party to another just to be awkward. The protest vote is there for the taking.

But it needs leadership.

But the Conservatives can relax for now: the UK Independence Party are showing little sign of threatening anyone other than themselves.

Quite so. And now I will start proseletysing; for all of those free market libertarians out there who believe that the EU is a bad thing: UKIP is the party that you should join. Sure, it is a relatively small and very young party, but that simply means that we can help to shape policy; that we will finally have a party to vote for—rather than constantly voting for the least unpalatable option (as I have done in every election)—and that we agree with because we made the policies.

UKIP's problem is a lack of leadership, sure. But that is partially because of the impending election; after the new leader is elected, whomever he may be, I believe that we will start to see a new surge in the party's profile. I know that UKIP are working on a number of research documents in different areas (and, naturally, I have offered to help out, especially in the area of alternative energy supply (a subject on which I have written a number of times)) and I think that we will start to see a great many new initiatives over the next couple of years.

UKIP's real problem, at present, is one of perception: there needs to be a great deal of work done on the marketing and PR side including, as I suggested in my previous post, a change of logo and possibly a change of name. UKIP needs to be seen as a proper alternative to the statist LibDems, authoritarian Labour and increasingly soft-left, cuddly Conservatives.

I am already excited to be able to play a role in this hoped-for transformation, and to being instrumental in bringing a proper alternative to the middle-of-the-road fucktards that are our three main no-choice, no-change, couldn't-fit-a-slip-of-paper-between-'em parties. All those of you who are of a similar mind to me: come, join, mould a party that you actively want to vote for.

History goes up in smoke

Via the poor, little Greek boy, yet more lunacy over smoking.
Smoking scenes are to be edited out of classic Tom and Jerry cartoons, following a complaint to the broadcast regulator that they are inappropriate for a show aimed at children.

In Texas Tom, Tom tries to impress a female cat by making a roll-up cigarette, lighting and smoking it with just one hand, while Tennis Chumps sees Tom's opponent in a match smoking a large cigar.

Following the complaint, Turner conducted a review of the Tom and Jerry library to assess the incidence of smoking and the context in which the scenes appear.

Turner then proposed to Ofcom it should edit out any scenes or references in Tom and Jerry in which smoking appeared to be condoned, acceptable or glamorised or where it might encourage imitation - such as in Texas Tom where Tom uses smoking to try to impress.

I really hate to say that I told you so, but I did, in March of this year.
Only a few months ago, the photo of Isembard Kingdon Brunel had his cigar removed; how soon before it is easy to remove the cigarette from a film character's mouth? Whether you are smoker or non-smoker, consider the power of the government now. After all, the guns wielded by some characters were removed from E.T., at the insistance of Drew Barrymore, and that is the version now shown on TV. As far as many people are concerned, the actors in that film only ever had mobile phones; they never had guns.

Seriously, think about this. How soon before cigarettes are removed from film? Already they are prohibited from any Scottish film or play. When the English ban comes in next year, will there be an exemption (as there is is Ireland (for herbal cigarettes) and, even,California (an "industrial exemption" license i needed, but usually granted))? In, say, 50 years' time, smoking will be unknown, but more than that: people will never have smoked.

And so, the exorcisism of smoking from the past continues apace. And the quote that is so relevent to this behaviour, this rewriting of history?
"He who controls the present, controls the past. He who controls the past, controls the future."—1984, George Orwell.

God, I hate being right sometimes...

Monday, August 21, 2006

Fuck the infirm

In the name of shit, I am so pissed off about reading about the plight of "the very young, the elderly and the infirm" in our society as that organ—which I find increasingly irritating—Private Eye puts it in relation to Prescott's letter to the Daily Express.

You know what? Fuck them.

They are all looked after by somebody else. The "very young" are looked after by their parents, who receive a very healthy subsidy for doing so. The elderly, especially in Scotland, are looked after by taxpayers (and fucking slack nurses and aux'es, but that could be improved if the people in those jobs realised that they were looking after people rather than simply doing a normal clock-on, clock-off job). The infirm are similarly supported by the rest of us.

I'm fed to the back fucking teeth by this lot, really I am. Are the highest suicide rates amongst "the very young, the elderly and infirm"? No. They are amongst young men who, despite the incessant mosquito whining of women, are expected to bring in the lion's share of the money into a household; young men who worry about the constant bills and paperwork that they are subject to; amongst the young men who, despite this so-called women's lib., still feel the pressure to do something other than sit at home performing fuck-all.

I'm fucking sick of it. We have young people—mostly men—killing themselves left, right and centre and we are worrying—and expected to pay for—the least productive in our society: "the very young, the elderly and the infirm". What the fuck is going on?

Here is what is going on. We are allowing those with genetic diseases to reach the age at which they can breed; and suddenly we are surprised that the incidence of, for instance, cystic fibrosis is rising. D'uh. What the fuck do you expect? Why are there no geneticists joining any kind of debate?

We are worried about the elderly living so long: so why do we keep them alive after the time when many wished they were dead? We put down dogs when they are in incessant pain: why do we treat humans in a lesser way?

And, most of all, why do we feel that the only people worth support and help are those that already have it? Why do we feel that those young men killing themselves simply are not worth supporting? Now, you can call me stupid if you like, but I think that if we are going to support anyone, it should be those that are most patently not coping. Since committing suicide can be adequately described as "not coping" then if is young men that we should be supporting over anyone else.

So, frankly, fuck "the very young, the elderly and the infirm": they already have support. Let's help those with a future (unless they kill themselves first).
Via Rottie, this from Heads Up.
“Mohammed2″ on would like you all to know his citizenship status, just in case there is any doubt amongst y’all:
“i must disagree we are not british we are muslim i never want to be called british”

Oh, boy, do I agree with you. I don’t think you are British either. Nobody asked us if it was a good idea the day some idiot granted your family the right to stay here. You are NOT British and you never will be. You are not worthy.

Now, can I offer you a lift to the airport?

Agreed. I'll tell you what, I'll chip into the taxi fare an' all.

Sunday, August 20, 2006

Various things

This is going to be a swift roundup, just to let you people know that I'm still alive (sort of). As well as being out until ridiculous hours in the morning, your humble Devil has got roped into reviewing, officially, for so has been trolling sround actually seeing shows. This fact, plus the fact that he actually has to write the reviews and send them, has led to even less time in which to blog (if drinking time is to remain at the same level. Which it is and will. Until I run out of money anyway).

Over at Timmy's is the Reduced Britblog Roundup but also this nice little piece exploding Polly's main myth...
Polly isn’t going to like this.
There's no evidence that being rich reduces average mortality, or that being poor increases it:

Bang goes one of the major arguments for her redistributionist project.

Inequality does NOT kill.

In other news, the very talented and sweary Carpsio has a tale of public sector employee fecklessness.
I repeat two salient facts: this is a 31 year old woman earning close to £30,000 per year, in a 'team leadership' role. On full pay for three months, and now in a fourth month of half pay. Because she doesn't get on with one of her team (yep - someone she is nominally in charge of!)

I don't want this to sound like a whine - but why the fuck is something like 40% of everything I earn going to her? Her 3 months off have cost me (i.e. the taxpayer) £7,500 in wages. If she is actually doing a job that needs to be done (doubtful, but for argument's sake) a further £7,500 for someone to cover her duties to the same level. Plus, the time spent on meetings, reviews, Human Resources meetings etc, I reckon her absence has cost you and me - Joe Soap - not much short of £20,000. So far.

The eloquent Carpsio says that it makes his blood boil; well, me too, old chum; me too.

Finally, the poor, little Greek boy exposes the Scottish Executive as being a dishonest, opportunistic cunts.
Actually, these things probably don't fall under the remit of the review at all, do they? When you're pissing money away, who cares about the cost of the urinal cakes?

Right, I'm away again. I shall be back very soon and taking a further look at the Executive and Davey Miliband.

Watch this space...
It is very difficult to define what a blog is, but this definitely isn't one. I may not be able to define a blog, but I do know that it isn't a pitiful bunch of z-list celebrities and well-known Fringe comedians writing PR puff-pieces for their shows.

In the meantime, my reviews for Tim Fitzhigham: Untitled is up. I need to write up another three shows for before I can go out drinking tonight...

Thursday, August 17, 2006

UKIP Leadership

As regular readers will know, a little while ago I joined UKIP. This was because I believe that—given the quantity of legislation and policy that is now out of our own government's hands—we can have no real political debate in this country until we have left the immoral, impoverishing, murderous organisation that is the EU.

A little while ago, I received a copy of the newsletter and information on the four candidates vying to replace Roger Knapman as leader of UKIP. Obviously, since his plain-speaking was in large part responsible for my decision to join them, Nigel Farage was my initial favourite. However, whilst two others—Davids Noakes and Campbell Bannerman—also looked promising, it was Richard Suchorzewski's Manifesto that really resounded with me. Here's are the very first two points in his Manifesto for Britain:
Personal Liberty
Britain has always been a bastion of individual liberty, but that is disappearing under a torrent of increasing police and state powers, ID cards and surveillance, political correctness and false values, creed and colour hate laws, constant monitoring and frivolous litigation.

A fundamental basis of British law should be that the public are free to go about their private business without constant interference. The Government as servant of the people must aim for minimum impact and interference in our daily lives.

Personal responsibility
With personal freedom comes responsibility, and again this is being steadily eroded. The over emphasis on individual human rights damages the cohesion of society.

We must encourage people to take responsibility for their own mistakes, and take responsibility for their own financial affairs and debt. We must help them to look after their own futures and make counselling available should they have need of it.

We must end the culture of complex tax credits, government dependency, inappropriate disability claims and frivolous lawsuits that give rise to massively over-burdened state departments.

Responsibility for self-discipline and that of children is not a state function, it is a personal duty.

Personal responsibility also means more opportunity for people to have their say in their own local communities – for instance, more democratic control of local policing policies, education and medical standards.

How could I not rally to this standard? At least he is saying the right things which is, let's face it, rather more than Spam is.
And then here is the second point from Richard's Manifesto for UKIP itself:
2. Codes of Conduct
I demand transparency, integrity and equality in the party. We will always tell the truth, say what we believe, and create equal opportunity for all. We will encourage the competent to shine, the good to excel and the excellent to assume the responsibility they are suited to, regardless of colour, creed, gender or age.

Acts of dishonesty, sleaze and public immorality will be dealt with fairly and transparently, without fear or favour. This will differentiate us from all other political parties and show why we, the British people, cannot, and will not, remain in the unarguably corrupt and centralised EU which has failed to produce adequate accounts since 1995!

Again, yes; he is saying the right thing. Isn't this the sort of commitment that we should be hearing from all political parties? Most importantly, it sounds as if Richard actually understands and believes in the concept of free trade and a low tax, low regulation economy. So, I think that my vote will be going to Mr Suchorzewski—even if he is Welsh...

However, there are some important points to be raised regarding UKIP generally and, most especially, their image. UKIP suffers from the perception that many of their members are old, racist, reactionary and insane or all four. They also suffer from their perception as a jingoistic one-issue, parochial party. If UKIP really wish to become a credible force in national politics, they need to take several steps.
  1. The pound logo has to go. Whilst leaving the EU is the single most important issue, if UKIP is to ditch the one-issue label, then a logo which intimates a broader concern should be adopted. I don't know, at this stage, what that should be but I am sure that a few brain-storming sessions could come up with a few ideas. Why not leave some in the comments and I will mock them up?

  2. All policy on the EU should be couched in terms of favour to Britain, i.e. instead of saying, "all these foreigners get our cash" we should be putting that, "Britain is compelled to donate your money for EU to spend as it sees fit". We should also be gracious; it should be made clear that—whilst we wish our fellow Europeans the very best in their project—we don't want to be any part of it, thank you.

  3. Why we don't want any part of it should be couched in simple terms that the man on the street can understand. That is not to say that UKIP should be patronising, quite the opposite; but the effect that the EU has on Britain should be phrased in terms of simple economics and freedom issues and not in terms of "straight bananas" and the like.

  4. The damage that the EU does to the environment and the people's of the Developing World should be repeatedly and consistently high-lighted. These issues play well with those with a guilty conscience and with moonbats. As Spam is finding out, there are votes in "green" issues these days. However, these issues should always be played against the economic benefits of certain policies, as Timmy frequently does. The research, and increased funding that UKIP would bring to that research, that is being done into alternative power sources that aren't fucking wind turbines (hydrogen fuel cells, zinc oxide powerstations, wave generation) should also be emphasised

  5. The Newsletter: oh good god.
    • The newsletter should be designed by a proper graphic designer. Right now, it looks as though some fucking amateur has pasted it together in fucking Publisher. And, please, will you stop using sodding gradients: they stoppped being trendy when they became effortless for all, about 10 years ago. The Independence Newsletter should look professional and slick; it should be easy to read and pictures should be clear and not lo-res and badly-shot. Also some care with colour-correction would be a bonus. In short, get it professionally designed: hell, I'll do it!

    • Don't include articles by one-issue loons with an agenda—such as the one bemoaning the tighter restrictions on vitamin supplements by Marlene Houghton, CH Ed Dip NuTh SNHS (Herbalism) SNSH (Advanced Herbalism) SNHS Higher International Dip (Herbalism), Associate Member of the School of Natural Health Science and Registered Member of the National College of Holistic Medicine—because it attacks the party's credibility. Herbalism and holistic medicine are far from being credible in this country: there is little or no research that shows any benefits of holistic medicine and to carry a full page article someone who patently has an interest, but who references no research, simply makes the party look like a bunch of self-interested loons. One can afford to lose a couple of Marlene Houghtons if it brings the party more votes.

    • Even in my one newsletter there are several catty comments and evidence of bitchy infighting. Stop it, grow up and start at least acting like a bunch of professionals rather than a collection of frustrated schoolgirls.

  6. Consult someone with a proper understanding of economics and with a good degree of research. There are, for instance, a number of bloggers whom you could tap for this. Again, Worstall applies his economic knowledge and writes about such issues several times every, single day. Tap this information and familiarity with the subject. Each word that any UKIP representative utters should be reinforced by total theorectical knowledge and absolutely backed up to the hilt by quotable and credible research. UKIP is starting from a position well behind the other major parties: it is absolutely essential that every single speaker should be au fait with anything that might back up the major points that they are making. They must not be seen to stumble over any question that might be asked.

  7. Anyone expressing racist views, even accidentally and in any circumstances, must be disciplined immediately and with great fanfare.

  8. That'll do for the moment, I think. I'm sure that I shall think of some others in due course.

    In the meantime, although it does rather counter what i said about the bitchiness, the Suchorzewski camp's fisking of Campbell Bannerman's draft manifesto is not only entertaining but also spot on.
Once again, thanks to the diligence of Factchecking Pollyanna, we are forced to ask the question: is Polly Toynbee a fucking moron or a devious, mendacious bitch?


The Wicker Man logoThe new Wickerman Logo

Those of you amused by such things might have seen the prominent posters for the new version of The Wickerman and might—although, I admit, probably not—have noticed that the typeface that they have used, whilst heavily Photoshopped, is actually very similar to that used for the Wikablog logos...

It seems that I am on the cutting edge here... Hem hem.

Still alive-ish

Despite Mr E's inference that I may have drunk myself into a hospital bed, I have merely been sleeping; indeed, Sleeping Beauty has nothing on me, I can tell you. It's not all beer and skittles hob-nobbing with the rich and famous, you know, and considerably more so when hob-nobbing with the not-very-rich and only-mildly-famous.

I have been spending a considerable amount of time with the splendidly eccentric Tim Fitzhigham, one of those quintessentially loony Englishmen who do loony things; things like rowing 160 miles up the Thames in a paper boat, or rowing across the Channel, and then 200 miles around Kent, in an old Victorian bath (including the last 160 miles with a broken shoulder).

On Tuesday, I wandered into the Pleasance to see his Flanders and Swan show, performed with pianist, Duncan Walsh Atkins. Absolutely brilliant! I knew the Gnu Song and Mud, Mud, Glorious Mud (The Hippoptamous Song) from All Aboard, of course, but there were many other delights, including The Gasman Cometh and the superb—and particularly wonderfully performed (with Tim wearing an Edwardian alchemist-style hat)—Have Some Madeira, Me Dear. The hour passed incredibly swiftly—the hilarious banter between Duncan and Tim linking each song conjuring up the spirit of Flanders and Swan themselves—but we were to be unusually privileged: since the show after them wasn't happening, the two decided to give us some more bonus material and we were treated to another half hour of amusing ditties. The two so obviously enjoy performing and was a pleasure to be swept along with their enthusiasm.

Tim then walked me into his solo show, Untitled, in which he tells of how his obsession with Don Quixote led him to pursue a quest to become a mediaeval knight, to win the heart of a lady that he loves from afar ("the lovely, bouncy Claire Sweeney"). The events that befall him as he attempts to achieve this aim, retold with characteristic vim, include an exploding toilet on Granada whilst attempting to gain access to the world's smallest kingdom (the island of Rotonga); a broken ankle whilst attempting to win a cheese-rolling contest; sending £10 worth of book tokens to Tony Blair (a knighthood must be cheaper than a peerage, right?) which were rejected out of hand; he then lived in a cave in La Mancha wearing a suit or armour, before finally returning to Norfolk, depressed, without having achieved his aim; and there was a surprise on the doormat...

Anyway, as I said, he's a loon but you have to admire that sort of lunacy and, besides, he bought me many birthday drinks, so hoorah for Tim (and go see his shows).

The other thing that made me laugh on Tuesday was a line from an excellent and typically comprehensive fisking, of an egregious article, by the P-G.
Well, I'll be dipped in dogshit. Can I use your strawman to wipe it off?

That made me laugh out loud, even as the object of the fisking arose my rage...

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...