Tuesday, December 30, 2008
The media should be more responsible and stop scare-mongering. And, just for once report accurately.
I’ve just read the Government is to get tough on caught those carrying a knife. As I continued the story, I thought ‘About time’. What would they be doing? Five years for carrying a bladed weapon? Re-introduce hard labour for violent crime? Maybe consider corporal punishment? No. 18 month’s community service and a curfew.
That’ll scare the pants off anybody prepared to stick 8 inches of cold steel into someone.
So offenders have been abused and threatened wearing high visibility vests. Good. What about the victims they abused and threatened? If it makes just one offender less likely to reoffend, it should be encouraged. Let the system continue, and look at the figures in a couple of years.
But I suppose the liberal brigade will get their way and the poor darlings won't be made to wear them.
Not satisfied with shooting at mutilated birds that have been caged and frightened by beaters so much they fly against instinct into the gunfire, the Prince beats a dog that makes a mess of his 'catch'.
If this was me or you, we would almost certainly be arrested and interviewed. As it is, the RSPCA (ROYAL Society for the Prevention of Cruelty to Animals) is not investigating, but conducting a 'review' of what happened.
Disgusting. The Royals and their ilk would have little kids back up chimneys if they thought they'd get away with it.
Monday, December 01, 2008
What's the problem over the arrest of Damian Green? Either he committed a crime or there was evidence to suggest a crime had or may be committed. Or he hadn't and there was not sufficient evidence, in which case the police and not the New Labour (who I abhor) government have a case to answer.
Thursday, November 20, 2008
The current wave of price cuts in high street stores supports my position that high prices and inflation are not caused by reasonable wage claims but by greedy businessmen charging excessive prices to maintain obscene profits just because 'they can afford it'.
Never mind wage restraint, the government should introduce price constraint. Or are obscene profits 'good business' while high wages are greed? We are, after all selling our labour.
Saturday, November 15, 2008
Greedy businessmen, not pay rises fuel inflation. (Or why don't the big businesses rises and bonuses fuel inflation?) The greedy 'they're going to need this, charge what they can afford, not what it's worth', profit for profits sake so-called entrepreneurs are the ones to blame and should be reigned in through similar draconian legislation the poor were subjected to throughout 17 years of Tory and 11 years of New 'Labour' misrule.
Wednesday, November 12, 2008
The politicians, lawyers, employers, financiers, speculators and sundry other interested parties must be rubbing their hands with glee. Talking to colleagues, friends and neighbours it seems they're on the road to victory again. Instead of uniting against the financial 'elite' we're spending our time arguing with ourselves, scoring cheap points about who is better off while they continue their policy of divide and conquer.
Tuesday, November 11, 2008
Re the Tories tax ideas. Once again they are saying 'benefits to businessmen will trickle down to the workforce'.
Secondly I can see this becoming another tax loophole. Take on one long term unemployed, get the tax cut then sack him/her. Do the same at the start of each tax year. Businessman benefits, unemployed figures stay the same and income tax goes up to pay for it.
While I was pleased to hear Barack Obama had won the US election, believing it might be a new beginning and usher in world peace, I have now revised my opinion. The day I discovered his opinion that when troops were moved out of Iraq, they should go to Afghanistan. Nothing changes, really.
Never mind the economy, unemployment, lack of housing. Parliament is busy discussing the Brand/Ross fiasco and worrying about X-factor contestants being voted off. (http://news.bbc.co.uk/1/hi/entertainment/7720144.stm)
Yep. We have to get our priorities right!
So Gordon Brown wants tax cuts for ordinary working people but they will probably be paid for by more public borrowing. Here's a revolutionary idea for you, Messrs Brown and Darling. Pay for it by taxing the super rich, individuals and companies and obscene profits of the energy and petrochemical industry.
By the way, how does that help the poorest who don't pay tax?
Thursday, October 23, 2008
Friend's of the Earth and Help the Aged have gone to the high court to try to force Government action on fuel poverty.
Government lawyers argued there had 'been no breach of legal responsibility'.
And there was me thinking governing a supposedly democratic, free society had a moral aspect. You live and learn.
Where does this government get its ideas from? Does it have a 'dumb policy department' hidden away? They now want to teach sex education in primary schools. Apart from allowing children to be children for a few years at least, can't they see that when sex education was made compulsory for 11 year olds we saw an explosion in teenage pregnancy to the point it is now the norm?
Tuesday, August 12, 2008
http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Cloud_computing “The concept, is that vast computing resources will reside somewhere out there in the ether (rather than in your computer room) and we'll connect to them and use them as needed.”
“The concept, is that vast computing resources will reside somewhere out there in the ether (rather than in your computer room) and we'll connect to them and use them as needed.”
Personally I am of the opinion that this is just another way to get more money from us. Cost of computers is constantly falling, software vendors are extending special offers to buy or upgrade their software. A niche has been seen, a possible multi billion pound (or dollar, if you prefer) niche. No matter what, if ‘cloud computing’ becomes mainstream, that is where the development money will go and licensed software will become obsolete and probably unusable eventually.
Regardless of the reasons vendors and or developers take this tack it takes away our choice. I just had a look at google docs for the first time and I can see me using it sometimes, when convenient and when the work is not critical. I would also point out that google docs have an offline option, which appears to allow google docs to be used offline. Presumably that means they are synchronised (I haven’t tried it yet) and if google or your internet connection goes down, you can still access and work on your docs.
I think in all probability it will be many years before ‘cloud computing’ becomes commonplace. There will probably be several years of licence based applications running alongside ‘cloud computing’ before we see the demise of licensing. But if ‘cloud computing’ becomes popular, then we certainly will see it pushed by the vendors and once there are few alternatives we may well see the end of cheap, maybe even home computing.
Another possible issue is who will supply these applications in the ‘cloud’? Almost certainly, apart from the current software vendors ISP’s will offer ‘cloud computing’ as part of its package. This could result in difficulty leaving an ISP (we all know how difficult it has and still can be to get a MAC number from your ISP) if they withhold your documents or make it difficult to access them. There are many ways such a system could be used to make document retrieval difficult.
Then there is the government. Living in the
In 1943, IBM's Chairman, Thomas J. Watson, famously said that "the World will only maybe need five computers!" we repeat this and have a little giggle at his lack of foresight. He envisaged these five supercomputers serving the billions of terminals we would have in our homes. It seems his comment, however ridiculed it may be today, may not have been so far from the truth!
Monday, August 04, 2008
Quoted from Teletext:
“A trade union leader has urged Labour MPs to consider mounting a leadership challenge to Gordon Brown after the Glasgow East by-election "disaster".
GMB general secretary Paul Kenny said: "There's no point dressing it up. It was an unmitigated disaster.
"The MPs have got to make a strong decision as to whether they want to go into an election with Gordon Brown or have a contest," he said.”
Well let me tell you this about the General and Municipal Boilermakers Union. I was a member of this union for most of the 1980’s. I have always, since my first working day in 1974 been a Trades Unionist. I was in the Amalgamate Union of Engineering Workers until being made redundant in 1980. (I also held down the same job for the same company.) I then joined the GMB after moving and taking another position. I tore up my union card because of their attitude. I didn’t stop being a trade’s unionist. I just didn’t agree with their idea of what a trades union is.
Allow me to elucidate. I had a disagreement with the shop stupid (sorry, I meant shop steward). We discussed the role of a shop steward and the rights of union members. His contention was that if a man (and he meant a man, not a man or woman) had a dispute with his employer or the employers representative then he should argue his case alone and only call in a union representative if the dispute could not be resolved.
My contention was thus:
Any union member has a right to representation by a union official at any stage of a dispute. The official should take the complaint of a union member to the company irrespective of any private discussion. If a union member feels unable or unwilling to argue the case personally, a union official should argue his or her case for them. My grounds for this are that we are in a union and should have representation at any stage of a dispute, and the dispute should be argued by an official even if the case had not been taken up by a member on his own behalf. My reasons for this were and are that firstly we are not all capable of vocalising our disagreement. Secondly, any case argued is for the whole of the union in the first instance, and for the rights of every worker irrespective of their union membership. In essence, the union is what it says it is; a union and what is done to one of us done to us all. Also, the union representative is a witness, so that discussions cannot easily be disputed. That is the strength of a union.
He disagreed and said if you can’t go in and do it for yourself, why should I do it for you? I think I have already covered that.
We didn’t reach an agreement on this issue so I took the case to the branch office. To my dismay, they agreed with him. I asked to speak to an official, a paid representative and was told nobody was available. That was when I tore up my union card. Right there, in the office.
I am still a committed trades unionist. Unfortunately, I have not worked for several years. (Wonder why?)
That is the calibre of the General and Municipal Boilermakers Union. That is why I take the introductory quote with a pinch of salt. You can’t trust or rely on the GMB.
There are reports that Gordon Brown is now the "helpless prisoner" of the trade unions. Shadow minister Chris Grayling declared Mr Brown is "vying for the title of
After ten+ years of Tory-New Labour rule, I do hope you are right. I do hope, not a ‘prisoner’ of the Trade Unions (something akin to the conglomerate companies that own most of
Alternatively, we can continue the current trend to make us subservient, bereft of any feelings of loyalty, worth or importance. In that case I suggest you read your history books. Watt
There is currently some debate as to whether Gordon Brown should stay or go.
That, as far as I am concerned is not the issue. The issue is whether we actually have a Labour Party to argue about. I say not. Gordon Brown, Jack Straw or the pathetic David Miliband are all turncoats. Give me a Dennis Skinner, Tony Benn or dare I say Michael Foot any day. You may not like their politics. You may not like their appearance. But they were true to the cause and trustworthy. Politicians in the true sense of the word. In the job because they believed in it. Not career politicians. They didn’t abandon the working man to Thatcher’s idealism.
Thursday, July 17, 2008
In 1996/7 John
Wednesday, July 16, 2008
A Long Eaton mother jailed before being cleared of killing her son, aged four months, has lost her compensation bid.
Her compensation bid was refused by the
It seems to me that having a conviction quashed without new evidence (facts) should be more worthy of attracting compensation.
It's time the rules on introducing new evidence and compensation were given a complete overall. And they should start by making sure no convicted criminal receives compensation for any reason connected with his crime, incarceration or other form of punishment.
Jacqui Smith intends to confront violent criminals (people who carry knives) with victims of stabbings.
She rejected demands that anybody caught carrying a knife should go to prison.
She said: "We know that tough community sentences including community payback, supervision and electronically monitored curfews are more likely to stop them carrying knives in future."These 'tough' community punishments haven't driven the thugs off the streets. It's driven them to carry and use knives because they don't fear the consequences.
Politicians will introduce real penalties when knife-wielding thugs start hanging around Eton and
Saturday, May 24, 2008
I just watched Margaret Beckett on Newsnight. When asked about the £600 she had claimed for garden plants and a new pergola on her expenses, she refused to discuss the matter, only saying that the rules were followed. (It sounded a little like a child caught doing wrong and denying any wrong doing regardless of the circumstances or evidence.) While Foreign Secretary, she had access to a taxpayer-funded apartment in
I have never voted for an individual. I vote according to the party they belong to and that party’s political, economic and social allegiance. These last 11 years have not given me that option, so I have voted according to my conscience, often meaning I have voted according to the beliefs of an individual. Often an independent. Often the lesser of several evils. If the labour party returned to its roots and I believed it to be genuine in its return, I would once again vote for them. However, if by some twist of fate Margaret Becket was our candidate, no matter what she professed to be her allegiance or belief, I certainly would use my vote elsewhere.More Revelations HERE and HERE.
Thursday, May 22, 2008
I have been reading this guy's free email for some years now. Anybody who has satellite television, or any other electronic equipment should read this. Makes you wonder. Thank heaven we have people like this to put us in the picture.
Friday, May 09, 2008
Candidates toss it around without saying what they want to change to.
Years ago, there was an old drill sergeant who inspected his troops and told the corporal that they smelled bad. The sergeant suggested that they change their underwear.
The corporal responded, 'Yes, sir. I'll see to it immediately.' He went into the barracks and said, 'The sergeant thinks you lot smell bad, and he wants you to change your underwear. Cameron, you change with Howard, Brown, you change with Blair, Clegg, you change with Menzies....' 'Change, now get on with it'
A candidate may promise change in Parliament but the stink remains.
(With thanks to Lockergnome Political Geeks- humor for the idea)
Sunday, April 27, 2008
A junior member of the government who was thought to have quit has I now said she is not going to leave - following a conversation with Gordon Brown.
Treasury ministerial aide Angela Smith had told colleagues she was resigning over the abolition of the 10p income tax rate. But Ms Smith later said this was not the case, although she acknowledged she had "concerns" over the policy.
Sounds suspiciously like John Prescott's meeting with Tony Blair over Clause IV, doesn't it?
Thursday, April 24, 2008
Socialism was popular in the 1960’s and 1970’s. It now seems to be taboo. Our ‘all for one, and one for oneself’ society popularised by Margaret Thatcher’s monetarist regime of the 1980’s saw the death knell of community. The end of social cohesion. The beginning of anarchy. In the 19th century, anarchy was the antichrist of the ruling class. Anarchists were the demons sent to destroy society. Now I argue that 19th century politicians and thinkers were a damn site more right wing than Thatcher and her followers. Yet she managed, towards the end of the 20th century to destroy socialism, to instigate the destruction of the engineering power of our country and to see
I ask, what has this ‘Labour’ government done for the every day working man? Despite their cries of discontent when VAT was put on gas and electricity by the ‘great’ lady, has this administration removed it? Has this administration redistributed the wealth this country of ours through fairer taxation? Have we seen any attempt at re-establishing the right of a working man to be content, affluent and safe in his own home?
What we have seen is greater tax on fuel, lower taxes for the rich at the expense of the poor and ordinary people in fear of the streets and in some cases in their own homes. Next month is your chance to say you are not happy with the current trend. You can go to the ballot box and make your feeling known. Vote for anybody BUT the main parties. Don’t waste your vote. Show them that you will vote. But on your terms, not theirs.
Saturday, March 29, 2008
A judge decides businesses are entitled to charge cash paying customers more for the same service.
Does anybody remember the time when such people were welcome, nay, encouraged? I can’t help but think that the financial institutions that profit from debt and credit are behind this. Once they have us in the loop, were there for life. I intend to die owing thousands!
Saturday, March 15, 2008
After an 18 month trial, permission for television broadcasts of Commons' proceedings was finally granted in 1990. I was marginally against this. Why? Democrats (in the purely British sense of the word) might well believe it would give the proceedings transparency. I was afraid that the men (and women) in the flash suits would have ‘the edge’. While I do not wish to infer that the voting population of
I make the point of John Profumo. Well Dressed, gentleman? Turned out to be untrustworthy and a liar.
Michael Foot who, in the 1970’s placed a wreath to the fallen from two World Wars on Armistice Day at the Cenotaph, wearing a ‘donkey jacket’ gave up leadership of the Labour Party because of the outcry, instituted by the right wing press and their Tory overlords. I shan’t quote the obvious- that most of the men who died to protect our freedom would have been similarly garbed. (Yes, I quoted it. I’m a liar, too.) I’ll just say we gave up a man who might have brought about some real changes. A man, who despite the donkey jacket, was a genuine and trustworthy individual. I was a member of the Labour Party back then. He would have made a great Prime Minister. When I say that, I mean in the vein of Benjamin Disraeli, Lloyd George and even, perhaps, Sir Winston Churchill. We really lost an opportunity for
I’ll end by saying that was the beginning of the end of the Labour Party in once
I rest my case.
I have just been listening to BBC’s news24. I heard a reporter discussing the China/Tibet situation. He described
I know there will be those who will say I could start my own. But, to be honest, I haven’t the means, education or possibility in this ‘democracy’ to do so. I am not represented by anybody. The few socialist MP’s I might vote for do not represent my constituency, and so I cannot use my ‘free’ vote to see representatives of my opinion elected. So I have become one of the many who do not vote and are considered unworthy of consideration because we ‘cannot be bothered’. Well, I can be bothered. When there is somebody worthy, in my opinion, of my vote.
I think, as do many, it is time to re-assess our system to allow my vote to be used where I feel it to be most effective. Not limited to my geographical location. For me to be able to vote for a person or party, irrespective of where I live. If I choose to vote for a person I would like to see in Parliament to reflect my views I should be able to do so. A member of this venerable institution should be elected according to the wishes of the majority of the country, not his or her constituency. That would truly reflect the wishes of the majority, which I always understood democracy was all about. (‘What’ says the wealthy capitalist? ‘A real democracy? Where the workers have enforceable rights? Where I have to pay a fair wage? Not while I hold the reigns of power!’)
This leads me to another anomaly in our so-called democratic society. Why do we still have 26 Bishops automatically given seats and the Archbishops of
(a) To delay certified money bills for more than one month,
(b) To exercise an absolute veto over other public bills.
If a public bill (other than a money bill or a bill extending the maximum duration of a parliament) was passed by the Commons in three successive sessions, with at least two years between the first Commons second reading and the Commons third reading in the third session, it could be presented for Royal Assent by the Commons.
So, the Lords is both undemocratic and a waste of tax payers money since they have no real power. Their ‘veto’ can be overruled by the commons.
So, let’s do away with them once and for all. Replace them, if you must with an elected body. But not with a group of people, failed politicians, churchmen, Lord ‘My-Dad-was-one-so-I-have-a-right’ etc and are there by virtue of their previous position.
Then there is ‘it could be presented for Royal Assent by the Commons. ‘
In other words, no Act of Parliament can become law unless the monarch signs it. So, irrespective of our 18thC revolution, when Charles the 1st was executed in the name of the people and his son was given leave to return and rule only by the right of the people expressed through parliament, the monarchy still retains the unassailable right to pass laws. Look at the 1974 election, when Harold Wilson won by the rules of the day, but our reverend monarch,
Democracy? I’ve yet to see one.
As you can probably see from most of my comments, I am a socialist. I verge on Communism, but prefer persuasion to force. I admit to sometimes wishing we could have a violent revolution, as it seems to be the only way we can institute a socialist régime when faced with the Capitalist misinformation that sounds so logical to so many people until it is examined in detail. So my following opinion on the subject of
Where is the
Saturday, March 08, 2008
For those who feel that, as I do we have no alternative political party to vote for. For those who believe we have no effective opposition. And for those who don't trust any political candidate. If you have such leanings, but would like to register your non-vote, and have a wish and willingness to vote may I suggest that at each election you go to the polling station and put a question mark against each of the candidates?
This way, no candidate will be credited with your vote. The voting paper will be rejected. If there are millions of such papers, it may, probably will be noticed. (I have been a scrutineer at a count. I believe they would, eventually be noticed.) We may become a non-affiliated political force to be reckoned with.
I end every email I send with ‘WANT TO VOTE BUT HAVE NO ACCEPTABLE CANDIDATE? PUT A '?' IN EACH BOX. SHOW THE ESTABLISHMENT WE EXIST.I also link it to this post. Maybe you could do the same. Maybe we can make a difference.