Friday 30 April 2010

It is not about the veil.

The EU has decided to ban the Muslim veil to pander to popular disquiet at this divisive mask - but they haven't. Not really. Well, they have and at the same time it is not the veil that is banned.

Here is the wording.

"No-one may wear in public places clothes that are aimed at hiding the face," says the text of a new law that is to be presented to parliament in July, according to a copy seen by Le Figaro.

It does not say 'Muslim women forced into wearing a veil against their will is to be stopped'.

It says this is to be stopped:

Hiding from CCTV, the Eye of God, must be prevented.

The veil is a convenient excuse.

Best candidate, or box-ticker?

If you look at the Total Politics listings of the most popular blogs last year, you will note that there is a name cropping up at number 1 in Scottish political blogs, Labour blogs, MP blogs and Leftie blogs as well as at number 8 in the list of all political blogs.

It's an MP so popular that James T. Kirk has been known to earn a few quid acting as a lookalike when he's not busy wiping out Klingons (More fibre in that diet, James T. That'll fix it). Yes he is Labour and is therefore starting from a position of utter contempt but as Labour MPs go, he's one worth keeping. He makes sense more often than not.

So, if you were the leader of the Labour collective and you needed someone to take on the dreaded Bloggerati who you like to pretend are in the pay of some mysterious Nazi warlord, who would you choose? The MP who took the No. 1 spot in four categories and No. 8 when in competition with every political blog in the country, or a bizarrely constructed biological experiment designed to determine whether the human frame can operate without a brain?

It's easy, isn't it? Tom Harris is white, male, hetero, British, married, capable of reasoned argument and therefore ticks no boxes at all.

Therefore the only choice is the one who ticks the 'woman' and 'vegetable' boxes.

If the Labour collective could have put aside their spite-driven agenda for a moment and touched briefly upon the world of logic and sense, they would have chosen Tom Harris to run their online campaign because he has demonstrated that a) he knows how to do it, b) he is very good at it and c) he is popular even with those who utterly despise the party as a whole. We non-Labour outcasts don't necessarily agree with MP Harris but we will at least listen to what he has to say and we know he will engage in argument.

Luckily for us, Labour chose the drone rather than the thinker. If they had put Tom Harris in charge of online campaigning, we probably wouldn't have this or this, and Labour might not now be in online meltdown.

So, raise a glass to Kerry McCarthy, another brick in the wall of Labour's final padded cell.

And thank whatever God you believe in that Labour were too stupid to put their No. 1 online star in any position of influence.

I hope Tom Harris keeps his seat. He's one of only three or four Labour MP's worth keeping.

Thursday 29 April 2010

Anonysmoking down under.

A tip from Timdog in comments, two posts back, leads to this.

Yes, those wacky Aussies will soon be Anonysmoking with a pack of Godknowswhatsinhere-Filter-Tips and while smoking, they can learn about gas gangrene. Our Righteous have not blamed that one on smoking yet but now the BBC have pointed it out, it'll soon be here too. Along with those packs that claim smoking causes ageing and children and volcanoes and all sorts of other things, soon it will also make your toes drop off. Doesn't worry me in the slightest.

Before someone pops up in antismoking glee to tell me that smoking does indeed cause gangrene, please bear in mind that I am a microbiologist running my own research business and am fully aware of what causes gangrene. As are those doctors who tell you it's caused by smoking. They know, perfectly well, what really causes it. No, the bacteria involved cannot survive burning and if they could, I have never met anyone who held their cigarette in their toes.

It is cold comfort to learn that Australia's government contains no more intelligence than our own. There's no point fleeing to Australia then. They are fully under Righteous lunacy too.

Smoking kills 15,000 Australians every year and is the largest preventable cause of disease and death in the country.

Wait until you lot get an NHS. Smoking just can't compete with that. Even Stalin looks on awestruck.

Prime Minister Kevin Rudd, who is to hold elections this year, aims to cut smoking-related deaths to under 10% by 2018.

He said his government made no apology for the measures.

Spot the difference between Australian Labour and UK Labour? Well, so far this Ruddy idiot has not been caught calling his electorate bigots and none of his MPs have so far tweeted postal vote results a week before the election. There is time, though.

He is hammering a large chunk of his electorate just before an election and states that he makes no apology for it. I trust the Australian smokers will make no apology for flushing his party straight down the thunderbox, followed by a good helping of last night's barbie and beer.

What is this deal with the plain packaging? I don't care what colour the pack is. I want what's inside. I don't collect the little packets because they are no use. They are merely convenient containers.

The colours on the packets do not mesmerise children. Only the most backward of feeble thinkers believe that. it is not about the children. It is not even about smoking. It is all about this:

"This will be the most hard-line regime for cigarette packaging anywhere in the world."

The Ruddy idiot wants to introduce the most hard-line regime in the world, in Australia. It should come as no surprise to anyone. Socialists love to impose hard-line regimes and if there are any Australians reading who think they will stop at smoking, take a close look at the UK news any day of the week. Smoking was just the start of it here and it will be just the start of it over there too. That hard-line regime will soon get you fined for feeding the ducks, declared a terrorist for taking a photograph or arrested for defending yourself against criminals.

If you smoke and you vote for a party that has declared you a non-person, you are insane. No matter which Righteous party gets in you will suffer more and more.

Choose a party that will let you live your life your way and vote for them. When you are told 'it's a wasted vote' take a close look at who is telling you that.

It's the same party that is beating you up, every day, isn't it?

Smokers, get out there and vote for an end to the constant battering and the relentless persecution. If you don't vote for your own freedom, nobody is going to do it for you.

Or you can refuse to vote, stay home, and wait for the Smoke Police to kick your door in.

It's up to you.

Labour car crashes, including one in real time.

I learned a lot about Campylobacter today. I hadn't realised it could invade the body tissues of poultry, especially the liver and the muscle. In my grandmother's day it was never a problem because she cooked chicken until you could smash the skin with a fork, and every work surface was spotless at all times.

These days, the problem is less with the home cooking and more with production. There is nothing that can be done during processing, not because there is nothing that can be done but because EU rules don't allow anything that can be done, to be done. Good old EU, eh?

Many producers are in denial, some make silly claims such as 'organic birds don't get Campylobacter' or that they only get some mythical 'benign' form. The supermarket buyers want something done but won't increase their price to the farmer, so the farmer can't afford to do anything. Profit margins in poultry farming are desperately thin. So there is an air of denial around the problem which is gradually breaking down.

The air of denial around the Labour party shows no such signs of breaking. They banned common sense years ago and have really thrown themselves into the role of reality-deniers with total dedication.

One week before the election, the Gorgon insults a pensioner then issues apology after apology without ever actually apologising. That's pretty bad but was anyone really surprised? Many of his voterdrones will shrug it off as 'well, he's a bit of a git but he's not a Tory' and vote for him anyway. Even though he is considerably richer than many Tories.

His snide and spiteful attitude towards the electorate is reflected in his party at all levels, and now they are on Twitter they can really let the stupidity rip. So we have one of them quipping 'I guess we have lost the bigot vote' without realising that for the past thirteen years, they have called everyone in the country a bigot. So I hope they have lost those 'bigot' votes. That's all of them.

Daniel Zeichner plays the 'I am superior and I have the Power of Smug. Watch me sneer at the proles' game, accompanied by a picture that really does match his words. Unfortunately he's up against Old Holborn in this election and OH is not going to let the matter drop. Not for a moment.

Then we have the Labour candidate who has been arrested and bailed for suspected drink-driving after crashing into a roundabout. She discharged herself from hospital and plans to continue her campaign because it's such a little thing. Nobody will notice. Besides, she is on bail until July 10th, and if she can get elected before then she'll claim Labour MP immunity from prosecution. There are still people who will vote for her, you know.

Finally, the sublime expert in avoiding reality herself, the Twitter Tsar of the Labour Party, the master of the online message, she who directs the Labour technophobes in blogging and twittering, has been referred to the Electoral Commission for publishing postal vote results a week early.

So the Gorgon's gaffe is relegated well down the stupid list for Labour this week. It was a thoughtless comment from a mindless buffoon and nobody at all was surprised that he did it, denied it, spun it, shifted blame and weaselled a false apology. He's been doing the same thing for years. The two follow-up morons who don't realise that insulting the electorate isn't going to win them votes have the Gorgon beaten. His remark was made without thinking. They not only thought about theirs, they considered them the height of wit.

I think crashing your car, being arrested and bailed on suspicion of drink-driving and then carrying on with your campaign as if nothing has happened trumps those. Especially if you are campaigning on behalf of a party who insist they are going to do something about such things.

Top prize for stupid must surely go to young Kerry McCarthy. This was not an off-the-cuff smartass comment made when she thought nobody was listening. This was not a continuation of Labour's unending 'shout down dissent by being intolerably smug and calling everyone a bigot' campaign. This was not a 'Roundabout? What roundabout?' moment.

She really did send out the postal vote results she'd seen, on her Twitter account. Listed, with numbers.


Seven days to go. Can they top this? Can they possibly come up with anything to exceed the level of stupidity they've shown in just the last couple of days?

If anyone can, Labour can.

And yet there are people still voting for them! I mean, there's stupid and then there's just plain dense.

State Thuggery and Child Abuse.

Not much time tonight, have to be up early and fairly awake for most of the day tomorrow. Normal chattery service will resume by the weekend. Some things just have to be vented so...

There have been reports that Count Mandelstein has tried to keep his patchwork creation away from public gaze. The Brown Gorgon has been restricted to talking to pre-brainwashed Labour drones and not allowed to mingle with the mumblers, lest he do something silly.

Well, now we know why. It seems Count Mandelstein was right. That 'racist-Nazi-bigot' shoutdown isn't just for the drones. It goes right to the top. He really should have used a better quality brain but then it had to be a Labour brain so I suppose the choice was limited.

Is it simply that the Count installed the Gorgon's brain upside down? No, that lack of compassion and the urge to treat their voters as scum is, it seems, a natural Labour trait. They really can't help themselves.

Then there is their great concern for 'the cheeldren' which translates as 'leave the thugs to batter their children to death and steal the children of normal people'. Mrs. Rigby draws an interesting comparison on the subject. JuliaM has the tale of the unlit cigarette and the woman who smells compensation. If it had been a cockroach she would fail. Because it's a cigarette and there's a child involved, I'm betting she wins.

Incidentally, the saga of the stolen child continues at Smoky-Drinky. There was a hearing this week, I'll find out what happened next week. The smoky-drinky grandfather was barred from the hearing. Not by the council, by his son, who knows too well what is likely to happen if the council get stroppy.

These mindless thugs never, ever learn. The latest is the story of the child whose mother sent him to nursery with a cheese sandwich. Nothing wrong with that. Plenty of protein, calcium and carbohydrate in there. Ah, but the nursery staff deemed it 'unhealthy' and stole it. Yes, I said stole it and that is exactly what they did. They stole a two-year-old's lunch. I expect they feel very proud of their actions. Really, I honestly believe they feel very proud indeed because that is the sort of filth our government and councils think are the right sort of people to be caring for children.

The parents removed their child and now take him to another nursery. Wigan council, who run the Righteous enclave dedicated to malnourishing growing children and bullying them into submission, had this to say:

A spokesman for Wigan Council, which runs the nursery, said: 'The centre has a list of recommended healthy food, according to national guidelines, which children are encouraged to eat. A cheese sandwich would not feature on the list.'

It's not on the list, and if it's not on the list, you can't have it. No trace of regret or apology for the theft of a two-year-old's lunch. Just Righteous self-justification. They even have the cheek to invite the family to send their child back to this den of torment and despair.

Children are growing. They should not be on fruit and veg diets. They need a lot more food per body weight than an adult. Cheese is a good food for children and for anyone else (other than those with dairy allergies, obviously) but especially children - growing bones need calcium. No wonder there's so much rickets around. The kids don't get out in the sunshine so are short of vitamin D and they are fed on calcium-free fruit and vegetables. No red meat, no cheese, nothing to help those bones grow. What are these cretins trying to create - a generation of no use for anything but a nationwide game of croquet? Stand in a line, kids, while the Health Monster takes his shot.

Westfield's manager, Aukje Clegg, said: 'The decision to remove the child from the centre was taken by the parents.

It was the right decision. If you have a child in the care of this deranged lunatic, I advise you to move them elsewhere as soon as possible. Unless you fancy a game of croquet and are short of a hoop.

The national dietary guidelines are a one-size-fits-nobody set of made-up numbers and are, in many cases, actually dangerous if followed to the letter. Never, ever leave your child in the care of a lunatic who believes that claptrap.

And I mean, really, are you honestly happy leaving your child in the care of someone who will steal a two-year-old's lunch and then attempt to justify it?

They do not care at all about your children. They do not care at all about the harm they do.

They care only about control. At any cost.

In a week's time they will ask you to vote for more torment and pain. Do you really, really want more of this? Really? Not only will you get a lot more of it, you'll be paying more for it too.

Time to look outside the Big Three. Well outside.

For the cheeeldren.

Tuesday 27 April 2010

Creation, EU style.

A good day for me. More work, and a contact for even more work, and two more potential projects on Thursday. If I can keep this up for six months I can then work like a Labour minister for the remaining six months, and spend all my time mouthing off about stuff I don't understand and nobody cares about while doing the square root of diddly squat about any of it. I doubt I can lie as brazenly but I'll practice.

Not such a good day for democracy. Iain Dale was moved to use a word from Obo's vocabulary about a Labour film. I'm not surprised. Neither is Constantly Furious. Especially as the film shows lots of grim-faced officials with clipboards, which anyone who has lived in this country for the past decade will instantly recognise as Labour's Little Hitlers. They are not 'coming', these clipboard-wielding, officious morons. There are here, and have been for some time. The pod people are among us, hatched by Labour, nurtured by Labour and given supreme power to be a dickhead and get away with it by Labour.

I'm sure they'll still be around under the Tories. Tory councils have been demonstrating their ability to be dickheads and get away with it for quite some time. They have taken all Labour's petty laws and thoroughly enjoyed being dickheads with them.

I will never vote for either of them. Don't get excited, young Clegg, and don't get your hopes up, Oily Al, because I'm still smoking and drinking here and you still hate me and I am going to demand your canvassers explain why they think it is just fine and dandy to make my life a misery. And then explain why on Earth they think I'm going to vote for more of it. That's if I ever see a canvasser. The leaflets appear with smug and superior faces plastered all over them but I have never seen any of those faces in real life.

Which is, on the whole, a good thing. For me and for them.

The EU seem keen to have us leave too. They have demanded a total ban on smacking children for any reason whatsoever. Battering granny for 50p? Tsk, the little scamps. Repainting the neighbour's car with brake fluid and sewage, then taping 240-grit Emery paper to their windscreen wipers? Oh, bless the little artistic darlings. Dissecting a cat without anaesthetic? Gracious, surely a career as an NHS consultant is on the cards. Crucifying Fido? A future in the clergy is certain. I did have an example of a future Pope but thought it best to leave that one out. Labour and the Fundamentalist Atheists have hit him hard this week. So maybe adding budgie-buggery to the list is a little over the top.

No, no, no. Clout them until they stop doing it. Children push boundaries. Always have and always will. They reach the point where there are consequences and then retreat within those boundaries. That is how they learn what is and is not allowed and that is how they learn the limits of behaviour that keep a society from chaos. They don't all have to be punished. We learned a lot from the punishment meted out to others. We learned 'Hmm, best not do that'. That observational lesson is impossible now.

They will push the boundary until they reach the point where there are consequences. If there are never any consequences then there are no boundaries. No limits. Look at those repeat offenders that Judge Alzheimer keeps sending on their way with a lollipop and ruffled hair and a big badge saying 'ASBO'. No consequences, no limits.

I know someone who has joined the police. In Scotland, they don't take on any old scroat. There are interviews, fitness tests, medicals, exams and if you get through that lot there is something like fifteen weeks of training before you get to the probationary period in which another officer follows you around. This person has just started the training and one of the group has dropped out on day one. After months of exams and testing, they dropped out on day one. Why? Strict discipline. They have never seen it before.

At school, we could get 'lines' for having our ties on in a less than straight manner. Do any modern kids still get 'lines'? Prefects could hand out that punishment for things like talking in the library. Prefects had no authority to inflict physical punishment, that was the sole domain of the head teachers and you had to do something really serious to get it. This was not Eton. This was a South Wales grammar/comprehensive State school and it was in the constituency of a man so Red it had affected his hair and his face. I speak of none but the EuroKinnock his very own hideous self, the man solely responsible for breaking the chain of consistent Labour voting in my family. My father knew him, you see, and would rather vote for a real weasel than a ginger one with a big nose and a small brain.

The school changed from grammar to 'any old leg-iron' while I was there. Even after it changed, discipline was enforced. Dress code, no fidgeting in assembly, no answering back to teachers, turning up on time and doing the assigned homework were all enforced and all failure was punished.

Now the little sods get no punishment if they turn up dressed as Lady Gaga or even if they don't turn up at all. The girls are even worse. Grammar schools are necessary. The government has proved it.

Grammar schools were not elitist. They let me in, didn't they? They were an incentive. Really, they were the first incentive a growing child encountered. Infant school was a piece of piss. You learned to read and to count and that was pretty much it, there were no qualifications and whether you were good at it or not you all went to the same junior school anyway. We did spend considerable time learning about gills-pints-quarts-gallons and so on and that was a total waste of bloody time thanks to the EU and decimalization. It does let me bamboozle people by asking for wood in a four cm by three inches by two yards dimension but even so, I'm now stuck with knowing stuff nobody can use.

It was the eleven plus exam that was the first hint of future concern in a child's life. Fail that and you were sent to the Secondary Modern, a place filled with ravening skinheads and Deliverance toothless hillbillies with a taste for a bit of the old 'squeal like a piggie, boy'. Pass, and you could get into the grammar school where they spent much more time teaching you stuff than they did peeling your battered carcass off the playground. It was tense. I still remember waiting for those results and it was the first time I was ever really scared for the future. Not the last, but the first.

I passed because I had an incentive. I am, like almost every other human on the planet, a lazy sod at heart. If I won a big lottery payout I'd never work again. No yachts, no big cars, I'd work one more year after the win and then live on the interest. Tell me that failure means having to spend every day with the red-braces, shaven-headed Doc Martin's brigade and I will work like a Roman galley slave to avoid that. I need an incentive. Everyone does. Of course, my chances of winning the lottery would be improved if I bought a ticket. But not by very much.

Now? You get into university because Labour says you're poor. You don't get poor by working like stink, you get poor by giving up and just spending everything. As I once did - but I learned from it. Now I use excess cash not for excess junk but for reserves. Yet if you work and save and try to make your life better, Labour take away your chance of advancement and give it to some idle little one-toothed pig-poker who sat around waiting to be handed everything.

There is no incentive to work at primary school. You're all going to that same comprehensive anyway. There's no incentive to work at the comprehensive either because there is no 'dimbo' class to stay out of any more. They are all dimbo classes now. There is also no top class to work your way into so why bother? The intelligent are not less intelligent. They are the ones who recognise, very quickly, that the way through this ridiculous toytown version of education is to sit back and ride the train. In this way is the career criminal born. Not the chav 'duh... I am Asbo Boy'. I'm talking about the Joker here, or Saw, or the entire organisation behind the concept of 'Hostel'.

Yes, those are fictional, but the very cleverly produced phishing spam I see every day is not. The drug cartels are not fiction. Neither is the child slavery that is everywhere, the importation of immigrants for a 'job' that they find is in fact forced prostitution, the trafficking of people... these things are not set up and run by idiots.

They are set up and run by intelligent people who have no sense of boundaries or discipline. There have always been some and always will be. The question is, why is the EU intent on creating more of them?

And why are none of the main parties showing any interest at all?

Are they stupid or are they in on the game? You decide.


I have a big meeting on Thursday which is a two-in-one. A sort of 'project rollover' meeting with double the work available. That's ages away so I've been preparing gradually.

Today I had an Email asking if I can make it to another meeting tomorrow, on an entirely different project. Well of course I can, I charge for meetings whether I get the work or not.

It does mean no time for blogging tonight. Deadlines I can cope with, but under-24-hour deadlines are cutting it fine even by my standards!

Until tomorrow...

Monday 26 April 2010

No Cheeeldren.

OnePlusYou Quizzes and Widgets

Via the Angryteen I found this blog-rating thing. Apparently there are moves afoot to restrict internet access by giving film-style ratings to websites. There are, as Angryteen points out, rather a lot of websites. There are old ones dropping off the net and new ones appearing every minute.

Monitoring them is an impossible task. I currently run four and am involved in others and used to own such delights as 'Doctor Smellie's Faecal Fun Page' which is now defunct and long gone, so don't bother looking. There weren't enough poo jokes to keep it going. Websites come and go, and blanket ratings for 'blogspot' etc won't work because if you're bored and browse through the blogs, you'll find holiday photos from one blogger while another has posted... well, let's just say 'yeuk' and keep our dinner down.

Apparently my rating of 'R' comes about thus:

This rating was determined based on the presence of the following words:
hurt (8x)
death (3x)
corpse (2x)
fuck (1x)

I know I don't swear much here but I'm sure I've said 'fuck' more than once. Whoops, that's another one. Better watch it or I'll be getting XXX next time.

But... 'hurt', 'death', 'corpse'? That's going to make teen goth websites inaccessible to teen goths. Since nobody else goes there, they won't be online very long. 'Hurt' is going to send the NHS offline, along with poor old John Hurt and any film review mentioning him. 'Corpse' is going to shut down Jolly Jimbo's Funeral Service With A Smile and all other funeral directors. Even the ones who don't supply dayglo coffins and dancing girls. Plus all those references to actors laughing mid-scene.

Restricting those words is going to shut out all reference to the Labour election campaign too.

Perhaps that's the idea.

Saturday 24 April 2010

A fine night...

...for a Smoky-Drinky. We might even go outside for a smoke tonight.


Soon we'll be able to revisit those pubs with outside seating. The antismokers will complain, but they put us all there and they made not a murmur when we had to stand outside in rain, snow, wind and cold so they get zero sympathy from me.

Outside is the smoking area. You, antismokers, made it so. Don't complain that all the smokers are outside when that's entirely your fault.

Must go. I have a bottle crying 'Drink me' and a pack of tobacco that really wants to be burning.

Vorsprung Durch Dalek.

This is not so much an election as a reality TV show. All the literature coming through the door is the same - "Vote for me because if you don't, he'll get in, and that would be bad (for me)". It's like a nationwide version of bloody Big Brother. All of them spend all their time telling us how awful the other two are and all they can say is "Keep Me! Vote the other guy out!"

I would not be at all surprised if the returning officer at each count custard-pied the losing candidates. Actually, that might make it worth watching. Do they still have those gunge machines from the old Saturday morning kids' shows? Each candidate could sit in one, and only one comes out unscathed - then that one gets the custard pie. In the interests of equality. And a boot in the yarbles, if the eunuch jellies have any. Just so they remember to keep their minds on the job.

That's the level they are pitching at. They are talking to a population mesmerised by Get Those Dancing Celebrities Out of Here and Ice Them (Mafia productions inc.) and Britian's Got Idiots Willing to Make Fools of Themselves in Public and East End Shouty People and the Ken Barlow Show and other mindless tosh and they know it. Nobody wants to hear about the deficit. Nobody believes any of them will do anything about the Stasi councils and their petty Hitlers. It's all about popularity and personality. Nobody is litening, politicos. It's your fault.

All the public wants on TV is entertainment. They don't care what the politicians say because they all say the same thing. Booze is bad. Smoking is bad. Salt is bad. Microwaved burgers are bad (actually, I've tried them and they are pretty bad, but you can't expect much for 99p and there's only a microwave at the lab). It is not illegal to take photos in the street but we're going to carry on arresting you for it anyway. You must buy more stuff but you must stop throwing away the four tons of packaging that comes with every five ounces of stuff. Banks must give you loans you can't afford so you can buy stuff you don't need. You must spend money you don't have in order to stimulate business and boost the economy. The economy will be in great shape. You can comfort yourself in the knowledge that you played a part in it while you wrap yourself in all that packaging in a shop doorway at night.

This is all we get. They are going to fix 'the economy' but out here in the real world, nobody really knows what that is. Out here, people are wondering when those gabbling idiots are really going to do something about drunken stabby yobbos rather than putting up the price of booze and 'banning knives' and then arresting disabled grandads with Swiss army knives and confiscating wine from picknickers.

If the police catch a real drunken stabby yobbo and actually persuade the Crime Preservation Society to prosecute, some dusty old bag of bones called Judge Alzheimer sentences them to going home and watching DVDs at taxpayer's expense, fines them an amount so pitiful their kids won't notice if it's deducted from their pocket money and then says "You're very naughty. This is your five hundredth offence. One more and I will be forced to tap you lightly on the wrist. Now have a lollipop and run along, you little scamp. Oh, and on your way out, tell Nursie to bring the mop."

I wonder how many times the average police officer bangs his head on his desk? No wonder they chase after litterbugs and old ladies with scissors in their sewing bags. Those are the only ones the courts will convict.

The politicians stopped listening to the public a long time ago. Is it any wonder that the public have now stopped listening to the politicians?

The BNP are criticised by the main parties for... well, for fun, I think, because they really aren't all that different apart from the racism aspect. Coming into the election, Labour have MPs in court for fraud and have been caught telling blatant lies on their literature, Clegg has been slated for accepting donations into his personal bank account, Cameron is faffing about, havering on the EU and spitting on smokers, drinkers and fat people when he should be walking this election and what are the BNP in trouble for? Well, they have somewhat miffed the company that makes Marmite. It sort of pales in comparison, doesn't it?

The BNP, all three main parties insist, are Hitler's Nazis reborn. Yet all three parties look worse. How did they manage that? It must have taken considerable dedication to prattishness. Hell, all three parties can expect to lose to the Daleks they way they are going. In fact, I'm willing to bet a Dalek could win a constituency somewhere. Anyone got one? Dalek Thain, step forward and claim your majority.

The funniest part would be that they'd have to make sure there was Dalek access to all areas of Westminster. Even funnier would be a Libertarian Dalek. Surreal or what?

Not those new Daleks either. Proper ones. It was never about how tall they were or whether they looked all 'Vorsprung durch Dalek'. It was about what they did. The proper ones, the little nasty ones. The William Hartnell ones. Nobody is scared of a Hummer with one eye in Fisher-Price paintwork.

At least Daleks would be logical. They would recognise that the government should not be helping people to find work nor creating pretend jobs. The government should be letting businesses make enough money to employ staff. Yes, it's evil capitalism but no money, you see, means no new jobs. One day I might expand my business enough to employ someone and I'll tell you right now that that day will probably see the first 'Smokers only' job advert. Antismokers can do it, and so will I. As it stands, the non-salary costs make it impossible. I don't see that changing in my lifetime.

Another thing about Daleks is that they never mess about with reality. The Cameroid claims he wants to 'rescue the flag of Saint George from the BNP'. They didn't steal it. Nick the Griff has never said "This is my flag now" and the BNP's literature usually shows the Union Flag. Not the St. George's Cross. So it's not the BNP who took that flag away from the English.

The Righteous did it. Anyone with that flag was deemed a BNP supporter and a 'racist-Nazi-bigot' and that's why the flag was so despised. It was nothing to do with the BNP and everything to do with the Righteous. So, Cameroid, I have to assume you have no idea who your enemy is.

Clue: Smokers, drinkers, those with large belt sizes, and the Righteous. You made three of those four enemies yourself. The other one is everyone's enemy and always has been. Another clue: it's the only one you are not fighting.

I smoke. I drink. I like salt. I eat what I want. I do not want a government who will order me around. I want a government concerned with police-fire-ambulance-defence stuff and there is not one on offer.

Cameroid, you are the least evil of three Satans but I cannot vote for you because you have stated, publically, that you despise me and regard me as less than a worm.

Can he fix it? No, he can't.

He's not going to try.

So who is UKIP candidate in my area? Do you want a canvasser?

Friday 23 April 2010

Calling England.

Today, Friday 23rd April, is St. George's Day.

I'm Welsh/Italian and live in Scotland and I know about this because we learned all the days of the patron saints of Wales, Scotland, Ireland and England for no reason other than general knowledge and general respect. Neither of which is politically correct these days.

How many English people know their own saint's day now, I wonder?

You can't miss St. David's Day if you're in Wales at the time. Everyone is going around with an enormous daffodil stuck to them somewhere or dressed as a leek. Wales drew the short straw there, eh? England gets a rose, Ireland a shamrock, Scotland a thistle and the Welsh end up with a vegetable. The daffodil feels like a consolation prize. As for the dragon, have you ever experienced the full fury of a Welsh old lady? Don't imagine they are weak and feeble and don't imagine that dragon is anything other than a warning.

In Scotland, St. Andrew's day is marked with flags. Few are stupid enough to pin a thistle to their lapels but there's always one. Around here, it's always the same one and no, it's not me. The big boozy session is Burns' Night in January - haggis by the barrowload and whisky to wash it down.

The Irish get hammered on St. Patrick's day even if they are not in Ireland. You'd think they'd want to try something different for the day. I was once in Edinburgh for the event and everywhere there were huge green hats, vast shamrocks and little bodhrans (I have a full sized one from a Dublin visit and yes, I can). They must have had a direct pipe to Dublin for the Guinness, the supply was inexhaustible.

In England, there are too many hand-wringers who go on and on about St. George being Turkish or Greek or whateffa and never even visiting England, they bleat that their own national flag is racist and anyone seen with one must be re-educated. I'll bet many schools and councils will pass the day as if it is simply Friday and woe betide anyone mentioning the name 'George' or carrying a flag.

I don't understand it. Righteousness is not a specifically English problem. We have them in Scotland too and Wales and Ireland are also plastered with the loathsome creatures. They make up petty rules and expect us to follow pointless commands for no other reason than to ensure we know who is boss, but they have never succeeded in demolishing national identity as they have in England.

Then again, if you call a Scotsman racist he'll likely shrug and say 'Yeah, so? Fit's it tae dae wi' ye onyway, ya bas?' Sort of takes the fun out of it for the Righteous. The Welsh will deliver an incomprehensible babble at light speed and then ask if that's clear. With a smile. The Irish will argue 'Racist? All our beer is black.' Then it will be pub fight time and the argument will have to wait.

I think, maybe, the English are just too polite. Or rather, used to be. An Englishman rarely needed to fight, he could win with a quip, a sneer and a sidelong look. There are tales from Empire days of elderly colonial governers chasing away armed insurgents with a walking-stick. Rather than violence, they used sarcasm. And they were quick to apologise if they'd hurt someone's feelings, unlike we barbaric ones on the fringes of these islands. Complain to a Scotsman that he'd hurt your feelings and he'd probably correct the misunderstanding by demonstrating the proper meaning of the term 'hurt'.

That, of course, does not apply to the dockyard gangs and the mining villages. It applies to the gentry, the ruling class, those who have attained positions of high office. Businessmen and managers too. All very cultured, all very polite, all respected and looked up to. Even the Krays were pillars of the community. This is a country where even murderous criminals wore smart suits and looked after their mums. Muggers would stab you and apologise. Burglars would leave a note apologising for the inconvenience. A country like no other. And yet a country ripe for Righteous takeover.

Look at what happened when the Righteous had a go at Buckfast. It has too much caffeine in it, howled the Ban Brigade. And that's the way it'll stay and you can ram your indignation where it hurts, responded Buckfast. The EU once tried to ban haggis because they'd seen the recipe. It's still here. No shortage at all. I know some who cannot pass a bus stop with a no-smoking sign. They will actually delay their journey to smoke in there. It's a paradox - they vote socialist but will not do as they are told. Making all those laws is silly. The Scots are not going to take any notice. Try telling them their bin is overfilled and they'll simply pack it down harder using your head.

I wonder, though, if that inherent politeness and sense of fair play is what made the English so susceptible to the Righteous? Look, those ethnic people are discriminated against. Look, that poor man in a wheelchair can't get up the stairs to the disco. It's injustice and it must be fixed.

So it is, and so it must, but the Righteous went a lot further than fixing it. They made a fortune out of perpetuating and promoting the divisions between people, and forming new ones. All along the way they shouted down dissent with 'Racist-Nazi-Bigot' and it worked. They took away all forms of school punishment because 'it is wrong to punish a child' and now they have a generation who are not the polite, fair-minded English of old but are almost feral. They are more barbaric than the barbaric Welsh, Scottish and Irish they used to look down on.

The young English have not forgotten their history. They have never been taught about it. The years 1215 and 1644 mean nothing to them. They refer to 'Queen Elizabeth' while omitting the 'Second' because they they think Henry VIII is something Charles Laughton made up and have no idea who succeeded him. They have forgotten what happened in this country under the previous King Charles' too. It's likely to happen again under the next one, the way things are going.

They really believe the English should apologise for slavery, despite getting into that trade thousands of years later than most other countries, being the first to abolish it and enforcing that abolition by raiding other countries' slave ships. Slavery still exists in many countries that the Righteous support. That's never mentioned to the children.

The English politeness and fair play has been twisted by the Righteous into something truly revolting. It is now actually illegal to call someone a rude name. You can be arrested for shouting at someone. You must employ staff not on the basis of ability but on the basis of the local ethnic proportion. If you under-represent the white English proportion, that's fine, but under-represent any other group (except smokers who are safely deleted from any shortlist anywhere) then you will be fined. Your bin lid must close. You will not put pips in the glass bin nor will you put paper in the card bin. You will put all food waste into a bucket in your kitchen and endure the stench until collection day. You will not deviate from Righteous-dictated normality.

The English are the only people on the planet who will adapt to this and put up with it. I'll bet there's not one Englishman who has ever put a green glass bottle in the clear glass bin and felt a little smug satisfaction at that. I'm still watching out for that clear glass bottle with a hint of green.

Today is St. George's day. The patron saint of England. The Labour Party have destroyed this day. Watch for reports of English flags being deemed 'racist' in the weekend papers. Watch for reports of street parties and celebrations. You will find much more of one than the other.

Put aside your politeness and fair play. Put aside your working-man addiction to voting for people who despise you. Remember why you shiver outside the pub, why you have to hesitate before you speak, why you are called 'racist, Nazi, bigot' for daring to have your own country's flag. Remember 1215 and 1644 and what they meant.

Remember who did this to you.

And hold that memory on May 6th.

Sometimes I feel like a reverse version of Lord Haw-Haw, you know. Come on, you young English, who was he? Did they teach you about that, even?

Thursday 22 April 2010

Looking for me?

The stats thing isn't very interesting in terms of numbers but it's very interesting indeed in terms of where visitors come from. Most interesting of all are Google searches. They suggest that people have been told about me in the real world and are looking me up. That, as a smoking campaigner, is encouraging.

Hello, county councils. Hello, Brussels. Yes, I am here to make your lives as miserable as you've made mine.

The best one today was a Google search on 'Who is leg iron journal blogger?' From Cardiff.

Idiot. That search turned up the old Livejournal site as the first query and pretty much nothing else. Did it never occur to you to ask me? Nobody ever has, you know. A few bloggers know and I have met one in person but on the site, nobody has asked.

Because it doesn't matter at all. The concepts are valid no matter where they originate. Who speaks the words matters not at all. Only the words matter. I'm just the one who says them. I am not the droid you are looking for. One film reference in one paragraph could be misfortune, two look like carelessness. Damn, that's two films and a play!

Today, a page went live on an online magazine that has a picture of me - the only one on the internet - along with a list of my main online identities and it is not hard to find. One of me points the way.

My minor identities are not listed. The ones that come and go. Obo and a few others will recognise Tony Steel (toe, knee, steel, come on, how obvious can I get?) as will some leftie sites I've played with but those are transients. I don't use them often and Tony's done his time.

I am not hard to find. Not at all. It just takes a little more effort than asking Google, who don't know. Even armed with my real name I am a book hidden in a library.

It would make more sense to ask me.

Of course, I might lie.

Vote Zombie!

Every time there's an election in the UK, we get a few loony parties springing up formed by a bunch of jokers who don't really care about politics but are just having a laugh. One of them unfortunately won the last election.

The Monster Raving Loony Party are the second longest-lasting of our resident nutters. They've actually beaten the longest-lasting, the Labour party, in some local elections recently, because people find them less mad. Then there was the one-man-band, the Church of the Militant Elvis who didn't do well but did get some votes. And of course the Greens, who some people have been fooled into taking seriously.

Now, at last, a long-ignored minority (although if you take a walk down any UK high street, you wouldn't think they were a minority) have their own political support. The Citizens for Undead Rights and Equality party is putting up candidates for election! No kidding! Ask Manwiddicombe, he saw them first.

I hope they win one. We could all do with a laugh. Since they are up against Caroline Lucas, so green you just want to mow her, I hope they do very well indeed.

Hmm... I suppose it's too late to form an 'Equal Rights for Smokers' party? It's certainly too late to fund it.

Wednesday 21 April 2010

Gulpin' whisky.

Whyte and MacKay is on special offer at Tesco - a litre for £15. It's a blend, a palatable one and actually quite smooth but it comes under the definition of 'gulpin' whisky'.

I don't know if anyone else uses such definitions. Mine are based on the old Wild West saloon definitions.

Sippin' whisky is a good malt. It's expensive so you drink it by pouring a small amount at a time into a crystal glass. A small amount because if you nod off watching a DVD (an occasional hazard late at night) and wake up to find you'll have to ditch a large glass of expensive booze, it hurts. Sippin' whisky is not for getting drunk, although that can happen. It's for savouring.

Gulpin' whisky is a cheap malt or a good blend. Ledaig, Glen Moray and Glen Grant are very nice malts but at around £15 a bottle it doesn't hurt so hard if you've wasted a glass by nodding off. These are okay in ordinary glasses but still better in crystal. I don't know why. Maybe it's the lead.

These are the ideal ones for Smoky-Drinky because you don't feel quite so defensive of them as you do of a £30 bottle of Laphroaig. There are those at Smoky-Drinky who drink whisky straight from the bottle - I know they do, because if they're already there and I arrive next, the bottle is open, started, and there are no glasses out. Smoky-Drinky is not a high class club. We get all sorts. Even Labour voters, although I am trying to cure them of that terrible addiction - for their own good, and for the cheeeldren.

Don't ever swig any whisky from the bottle. It is sinful and wrong and Satan will visit you in the night and mark you forever with his pungent faecal scent. In your mouth. And I won't let you have any of mine if you're going to do that with it. Mind you, it's not as sinful as voting Labour. If you do that, Satan rubs his hands and really goes to work on you. Even he doesn't like Labour. Probably because Mandelstein is serious competition.

Anyhow, gulpin' whisky gets poured in larger measures but still not drunk too fast. It's to be enjoyed. No down-in-one nonsense. The good blends come under this definition and of course, it depends what you like. Whyte and Mackay, Black Bottle, Grant's - the Ale or Sherry cask (much better than the plain stuff), Stewart's Cream of the Barley, and several others are gulpin' whiskies.

Redeyes I never buy any more. They are harsh blends. Contrary to what many people seem to believe, whisky should not hurt when you drink it. It doesn't have to taste like nitric acid to be a good whisky. Down at this end are Bell's and the modern, inferior version of Famous Grouse. They are for people who like pain, or who believe that drinking must come with an immediate penance. They are not the worst...

The worst are the rotgut. At the bottom of the whisky stacks are the supermarket own-brand ones and those are cheap for a reason. They are terrible. I'd say that if the Shenkerites wanted to put people off strong drink, they should make those own-brand blends cheaper. If that was your only experience of whisky you'd never touch the stuff again. Suitable only for removing varnish or cleaning the toilet and not even good enough to make an Irish coffee. For that I'd use a redeye or a low-end gulpin' whisky. Never Jameson's or Bushmills, they are far too good to be mixed with coffee and sugar. Rotguts are cheap but they do not give you an impression of what whisky is like. They give more of an impression of what it's like to have your throat cleaned with a wire brush dipped in bleach. In the morning, you get the same effect at the other end.

Rotguts are the ones tramps drink before falling into the gutter and going 'blurb-blurb-blurb' until Alex, Pete, Georgie and Dim come along. They are not really supposed to be consumed at all other than by people who are in a situation where a painful death sounds like a good option. They are the ones you buy because it's cheap to give it a go, drink one small glass and pour the rest down the sink. It does wonders for your U-bend but it does awful things to your insides so, in fact, it's worth buying a bottle to clear your sink-traps.

Just don't drink any.

Tuesday 20 April 2010

When God flicked his cigarette...

...every plane in Europe sat idle.

Strange, that. I remember Mount St. Helen's erupting. It was all over the news and the gunge coming out of it was all over the place. When the planet popped that particular zit, there was much wailing and gnashing of teeth because the scaremongers wanted to convince us that we were going the way of the dinosaurs. The whole planet was to be affected by Helen's Ash of Death.

In the UK, I noticed no difference at all. I don't recall the Americans grounding all their planes. Rather, I seem to remember flypast after flypast of the popping zit of Gaia with reporters marvelling at just how much crap one mountain could hold.

When Iceland burst a pimple, a thin cloud of yellow gunge drifted our way. We were told to worry about third-hand erupting or some such thing and stay indoors in case the Icelandic Ash of Death landed on us.

Then we were told nah, it won't hurt you.

It certainly didn't hurt me. I've been looking out for this aerial phenomenon and haven't seen a trace of it.

What the scaremongers forget is that they are now dealing with people who have been convinced of the deadliness of third hand tobacco smoke. If they can be induced to wet themselves at the traces left by half a gram of leaves wrapped in paper, how much will their underwear fill at the thought of a whole mountain's worth of deadly dust headed their way? This calls for some serious reinforced gusset technology, I'd say.

For a week, no plane has flown. A helicopter passed overhead today and I noticed it because it's the first noisy flying thing to pass this way for a while. There's an airport some 15 miles away and I'm on the approach path so noisy flying things don't generally get noticed any more. It's going to be a surprise when they finally get back to work.

Why, though? Why close down all airports because of something that has happened before and which didn't close all airports before? Have we become so feebly risk-averse that the slightest hint of possible bruising is terrifying to us now? I think, in many cases, the answer must be 'yes'. I have bruises at the moment from my current bout of devastation gardening. Gardening has stopped for the moment because it's snowing here but will resume when global warming remembers what it's been ordered to do. Bruises heal, some injuries don't, serious injury can kill us. Being killed is best avoided, sure, but to the extent of not doing anything at all, just in case?

People often tell me I should give up smoking and drinking so much because it's bad for me. On that basis I should give up crossing the street because that can be bad for me in a rather more immediate and definitely terminal way. Crossing the street carries risk. Reading the newspapers or watching the news can make me enraged and risk a heart attack. I sometimes cut myself gardening. Yesterday I was moving a frost-ruined plant pot when it shattered and my mud-caked fingers turned red. I washed them, dried them and stuck plasters on. I risk tetanus or other infection by gardening. Should I just let it all go to hell?

Dick Puddlecote is of similar mind. In another post, he links to the story of a brave lunatic who does mad things for fun. Take a look at those comments on the Daily Tremble article.

A sample:

What if he forgets to open the parachute, what then?
- Salon, Nottignham, 20/4/2010 13:21

Well, then he dies. However, I suspect that the speed of descent would clue him in that he's forgotten something. Sandwiches... flask... clean underwear... Parachute! Yes, that's it. Open the parachute. Phew, almost forgot that time. Better make a note.

He only risks himself, nobody else, but the commenters can't allow that. It's dangerous. Stay with the herd. If you go out on your own you might discover something amazing but the lions might get you. It's just not worth it.

For some, it is. Under the dreadful yoke of the current herd mentality, the South and North poles would still be marked as 'here there be dragons' because nobody would be permitted to go there. Yuri Gagarin would have been sectioned for instability - you want to do what? Sit on top of a huge firework in a little tin box and be shot into space? Madness!

The Wright Brothers would have been arrested for endangering themselves. Edison would have been imprisoned for trying to get people to buy a thin glass bulb with a vacuum inside, and then run a high voltage through it. Tesla would have been shot for the safety of the herd because he did some wonderfully wild stuff. Henry Ford would have been ordered to take the engine out of that Model T and tie a horse to it instead.

People traveling on rails behind something that runs on high pressure steam? Insanity! Gas running through pipes right into people's homes? Oh, the risk! A coal fire - indoors? A bridge over the river? What if it falls down? Safer to go around. Better yet, safer to stay here. It might be dangerous over there.

What if, what if, what if. Once that little phrase led to great things. What if lightning could be harnessed? What if we refined that black oil and made an engine that ran on it? What if we were to build a rocket that could take men to the Moon and back again? What if we ignore that 'edge of the world' stuff and just keep on sailing? Let's try it and see what happens.

Now it is completely reversed. What if someone electrocuted themselves? What if that engine caught fire? What if the rocket couldn't get back? What if the edge of the world is real?

Rather than meaning 'let's find out', it now means 'we dare not try'. The human race has gone, in a very short time, from 'Here goes something new!' to 'Oh, what's the point'. When the dinosaurs died, they had reasons to keep on living. Most of humanity no longer does. For most people, being alive is all there is. They dare not risk doing anything with it.

I don't know whether to write a rallying call for the human race, or an obituary. Either way, I'd probably have to fill out a risk assessment first.

I wonder though, was this plane-grounding all about risk? This was an Icelandic volcano. The Gorgon and his nosegoblins would very much like to blame Iceland for something about now. It will remind people of the terrible, terrible banks that only Labour can save by taking our money and giving it to the naughty bankers with a note saying 'Now don't get caught doing it again'.

The unions wanted to shut down British Airways, and the unions and Labour are the same thing. Could the unions have seen a golden opportunity to smash their hated employers without taking the blame?

Then there's the Met office, desperate to deflect attention from the mess they've made of Climatology. A real and current disaster should do it. As the Climatologists have often said, they'd like a real disaster too because then they could pretend it was due to global warming and start their scare tactics again.

On the whole, I don't think it's down to any conspiracy. Sadly, I think it's down to the general feebleness of the people of the developed world.

Conquer the universe? With this shower? We'll be lucky if humanity can wipe its own backside a hundred years from now.

Brian Aldiss wrote a short story called 'The Failed Men'. It's reprinted in another of his collections and if you read it in the current world climate, it will depress you immensely. I read it many years ago and it is still clear in my mind. Even though he is now a Climatologist, that one story expresses exactly where the 'no we can't, it might hurt' mentality is taking us. Unfortunately comments are closedon that CIF entry, or I'd have reminded him.

All planes grounded because God flicked his cigarette.

Imagine what will happen when he stubs it out.

Smoking signs.

Manwiddicome has produced a wonderful little sign and had it printed up professionally.

He has graciously allowed anyone to copy the image and get them printed, or to print them off and pass them around.

The image is here. I have already downloaded a copy and it's printing as I type. I'll need a few for Smoky-Drinky and I think it's going to be very popular indeed.

Well, not with antismokers nor with politicians, but they've never given a damn about my feelings and it's too late now.

More smoking lies and contradictions.

My grandfather died many years ago of pneumoconiosis. Black lung. Caused not by his lifelong enjoyment of rollups made with Franklin's Strong, but by the years he spent working in the coal mines.

Smoker's lungs are not like the ones on the packets. If they were, why the hue and cry over half of those lung transplants coming from smokers? No doctor would transplant something that looked like the forgotten burger on the barbecue grid. Smoker's lungs are deemed, by the same doctors supporting that ridiculous picture, to be good enough for transplant into non-smokers. Do you really imagine those doctors would be happy to give you a lung that looks like it's been soaked in Jeyes fluid?

Black lung is a coal-miner's affliction. The picture on the packets is an absolute and deliberate lie.

Then there is the picture of the teeth. Rotting, horrible teeth. We are to believe that these are the teeth of a smoker but there is no sign of nicotine staining. If someone has smoked so much it has destroyed their teeth, where's the staining? Further, where are the canine teeth? There are none, because this picture is of a child's first set of teeth, ravaged by dental caries. Not by smoking at all. This picture is an absolute and deliberate lie.

Don't believe me? Get hold of a copy of that cigarette-pack picture and visit the Scottish government's report on children's teeth from 2003. Pages 3 and 5 have something similar. The original photo in its original context is out there somewhere. I'll keep looking.

The aged hands are not aged by smoking. If someone smoked so much that they had shrivelled their skin, there would be definite and clear (even in a monochrome photo) nicotine patches on their fingers. These are the hands of a 90-year-old who might or might not be a smoker. This picture is an absolute and deliberate lie.

One picture shows a corpse on a mortuary slab with the slogan 'smokers die younger'. The corpse is an actor, his skin appears blue because the scene is lit with blue light and there is nothing to suggest he died from smoking. There is nothing to suggest he has died at all. The picture is an absolute and deliberate lie.

Tobacco smoke contains nasty chemicals, screams another warning. Well of course it does. Burning anything at all produces nasty chemicals. Burning MDF produces a toxic cloud no smoker could ever achieve even if they smoked their lifetime's supply at one sitting. Incense? Let's not even get started on incense. Or scented candles.

Traffic fumes contain all the listed chemicals and more. Crucially, what is missing from that list is the concentration of each chemical - most are so low that one cigarette does not produce a detectable amount. You have to burn a pile of tobacco in a sealed container to find them. It has to be done in a sealed container because all those chemicals are already in the atmosphere... from traffic, cleaning products and many other sources. The warning is an absolute and deliberate lie.

The lies that confuse me most are the warning that smoking causes impotence, and another that it damages sperm. If it causes impotence, what does it matter if it damages sperm? Mr. Floppy won't be doing any sperming. In fact, it causes neither. Take a look at the chain-smoking chavs on any run-down estate, and see how many kids they have in tow. These claims are an absolute and deliberate lie.

All those warnings are demonstrably false. How can this be? If smoking causes all these things, surely there is no shortage of real photos they could use, and real claims they could make? Has any antismoker ever questioned what they have been ordered to believe? Of course not. they don't like the smell and that is the only thing that matters to them. They will soak up any lie that supports their position and they will never, ever question those lies because they do not want to think, for a moment, that they are wrong. They have to believe that it is the smokers shivering outside every pub who are selfish, and the fact the pub is empty inside because the antismokers never visited and still don't - well, that does not make the antismokers selfish at all. It makes the smokers even more selfish for being outside and in their way.

So they lap up the nonsense of second-hand smoke, the patent absurdity of third-hand smoke, to the extent that no smoker can now buy an Apple product because if you smoke, they will not honour the warranty. There might be a tiny particle of tobacco smoke in there and that, as all antismokers know, is a million times more potent than ricin. Even reading about it can give them cancer.

It's all lies. All of it. No antismoker will ever hear that because no antismoker cares. They don't like the smell. It is their one and only legitimate objection and on that one personal preference, an entire section of the population has been designated subhuman. Worse, it is all on the basis of one hideous bint's personal preference. One.

Tiny Blur did it, and his reason was that his wife forced him to give up smoking. That. Is. It. That is the sole reason for the shrieking harpies we smokers encounter daily and the justification for making us all into pariahs. That is the reasoning behind the smoking ban. The Blair Witch didn't like the smell and forced the Tiny Blur to pack it in, and once he was a born-again non-smoker he empowered all those who didn't like the smell as his personal revenge on those of us who aren't married to Slotgob and aren't forced to quit against our will.

The Tories and that other lot also support this vicious, spite-driven ban and so do the SNP. They hate us all and want us to vote for them, then they will tax us to pay for more ways to make us suffer. Are you into masochism? I'm not. I won't vote for any party whose manifesto explicitly states that I am scum and will be disposed of as soon as they get into power. that's why, locally, UKIP are still my preference. They won't reverse the spite but they'll reduce it and that's a start.

Not content with claiming that we are killing ourselves and everyone around us even though far fewer people now smoke than even 20 years ago, the Righteous have now decided to put the frighteners on harder.

So, if you smoke while pregnant, your son will have reduced fertility. Like in China where smoking is endemic. As everyone knows, there are hardly any Chinese people left in the world. Logic? Not where smoking is concerned.

There are some very interesting remarks in that article. This one in particular:

Professor Sharpe, of Edinburgh University, evaluated studies from around the world on the effects on male fertility of factors such as smoking, obesity and exposure to chemicals.

A study of the after-effects of a major chemical leak from an Italian factory found no effect on the sperm counts of men who were adults at the time. But those who were in the womb grew up to have lower-than-expected sperm counts.

The professor's research concluded that chemicals found in food, cosmetics and cleaning products are to blame for some of the birth defects to baby boys' genitals and are raising the risk of testicular cancer in later life. But evidence that the same chemicals affect a grown man is lacking.

By the third paragraph, the 'smoking' part has been dropped from the list of things that cause mutant danglies. Because it doesn't. But note again this line:

But evidence that the same chemicals affect a grown man is lacking.

Oh, but those cigarette packs say it damages sperm and makes your doo-dah die. Now, this professor, who has studied smoking and all kinds of other chemical nasties says there is no evidence that it has any such effect on any adult. Smokers are not directly affected in the downstairs bits by smoking. So the focus has changed to an effect on the downstairs bits of the unborn.

The antismokers will lap it up and the comments show they've already started. Not one has noticed that the warnings of impotence and sperm damage have just been abrogated. There's something else, too. Let's try that line again.

But evidence that the same chemicals affect a grown man is lacking.

So if I smoke and it doesn't affect me at all, how come a whiff of secondary smoke affects others in such deadly fashion?

It does not affect grown men. Only babies (yeah, that must be true because all the rest was, wasn't it?)

So, antismokers. Which are you? Adult or infant?

Consider carefully before you respond with 'Poo, I don't like that stinky smell'.

Indecent exposure.

I always thought the Press were bound by codes of decency and factual reporting. It seems this is not only not so, it is officially not so and never has been.

Those press hacks can write what they like with no facts, no research, no checks or balances and their editors will support them.

The newspapers are an entirely untrustworthy source of news and that is now official.

If you are a candidate in the upcoming election, and the local hack-rag doesn't like you, they can say what they like and get away with it. Well, that is pure free speech, but it only works if we all have it.

We don't. We ordinary proles would get sued for libel if we did the same thing.

A future fair for all? Really?

A future fair for all those who Labour agree should have a future. It's a bit unwieldy but it's their real campaign slogan.

If you smoke or drink or like a pizza or a bag of chips, Labour want you gone.

And they want you to vote for it.

Monday 19 April 2010

Sheep in wolves' clothing.

Well, I am in shock. It seems the Met Office were just making up all that stuff about the volcanic ash taking down planes and the last week of no-fly-zone over most of Europe wasn't necessary at all. Those we entrust with climate change and other weatherly things, getting it wrong? Again?

You know, if I made mistakes with a fraction of the Met Office frequency and cost my clients a millionth of what the Met Office has cost theirs, I'd not only be out of business, I'd be sporting a new tar-and-feather overcoat with spikes on the inside. So how come nobody is sacked, no departments are shut, nobody is expected to do anything other than say 'Whoopsie'. Again. It's because they are immune to blame.

This culture of immunity is insidious and dangerous and potentially useful to a nasty bugger like me. It has spread into the general population. Every day I see people stepping out into traffic without a care, and it's not just the younger generations. People of all ages believe themselves indestructible now. Everyone regards themselves as the One of Ultimate Importance and the traffic will stop because they want to cross the road.

It's Teddy logic from the old black-and-white TV days. Andy Pandy and Ted were playing hide and seek. When it was Ted's turn to hide, he covered his eyes. "If I can't see Andy, then Andy can't see me" was the logic, and even as a child the lunacy of it was clear. Yet it is the same logic that many people apply to speeding lumps of steel these days. That programme should really be shown again and so should Bill and Ben the Flowerpot men. I want to know if they really did swear among the 'flobalob' language. Oh, and the Woodentops just for Spotty Dog. Still makes me laugh. Especially Mrs. Scrubbit.

In this progressive Labour world there are no consequences to being a total mindless arse. Those in high places have proved it and continue to prove it again and again and again. No matter what, there are no consequences. 'Progressive' derives from 'progress' which implies motion. It does not specify whether that motion is in the right direction. Evidently, Labour have not grasped this. As long as there is 'progress', they don't care where they are going.

Everyone is untouchable. Unless you do something a clone shouldn't do. That will get you into big trouble. Acting like you own the world is fine, but having a bit of fun is deviancy and will be punished.

Now, everyone is in a hell of a hurry, all the time, and nobody else matters to them at all. I was at Tesco earlier this evening. When I have the chance of a lift, I stock up, but I'm always out first and have to wait because shopping is not fun, it is just something I have to do like cleaning the toilet. It's unpleasant, but not doing it can result in something more unpleasant. Like running out of booze.

I finish my shopping fast despite the habit of too many people to use Tesco as a bloody social club. If you want to stop for a chat, do it without parking your trolleys like a barricade across the aisles and never, ever do it in the whisky aisle because you are in the way of the main part of my shopping. If you must stop and socialise in a supermarket, do it in the fruit and veg section. It has wider than average spacing and it's easier to get past you. There is a real social club just down the road from Tesco. Join it if you want to speak to people. Tesco is for rapid shopping, not catching up on the last fifteen years of trivia.

Tesco have stocked Lagavulin but they want £40 a bottle, so I'll wait until they realise nobody's buying it and put it on special offer. That's just a bit of incidental information.

While I was waiting, I watched a Big Issue seller at work. I didn't rush to buy because he had a Burberry cap and I thought, well, wearing a trendy cap while claiming to be poor doesn't really cut it. It looked new, too. The thing is, if you're trying to get people to approach you and reveal that they have money, then looking like a chav isn't a good idea.

He wasn't doing well. People drive those trolleys as if they are in a race. I'm going to have to get a chequered flag to wave as they pass. One woman thought it a good psychological trick to push her trolley very, very fast and straight at me in order to make me get out of the way. I stared straight into her eyes, she stopped and apologised and went around. People don't like eye contact these days. So I do it all the more. Try it, it really scares them.

I watched the poor bugger try to sell his magazines to the high-speed, phone-glued-to-ear blurs of things that shot past him. He'd taken the trouble to put them into a plastic cover, which I thought a nice touch. After a while he moved to just inside the shop doorway but out of sight of security (it's bloody cold here and I know how he felt). Still no luck.

Security. That's another thing. When did shops acquire bouncers? I seem to remember going into huge shops - if you've ever been in David Morgan's in Cardiff, which seems to span almost an entire street, you'll know what huge means - through multiple entrances and not a sniff of anyone who was at all concerned who came in or went out. Now, if I go into Homebase, there is a camera looking at me as soon as I go through the door. It's aimed at the door and here's the clever part - above the camera is an advertising screen. Look at the screen and the camera has a perfect view of your face. I have never seen what's on that screen. I've only seen it from behind and asked others what it shows. In Tesco, there is an imposing (fat and old) bouncer at a desk covered with little televisions. In case there is a fight over knee bandages when the pensioners come in a little tipsy. I shouldn't joke. A few Christmases ago, there really was a fight over the last bag of sprouts in this very store. Unbelievable.

Finally it was time to leave. That Big Issue seller had behaved perfectly despite his 'see you Jimmy' look. He had answered every 'no' politely, he had backed off when insulted, he had stayed calm against people I would have hit with a bottle (the wine, not the whisky. It might break). He tried no hard sell, he merely offered his wares and accepted that they were turned down.

So I bought one. It has Derren Brown in it. I'll read it sometime to see what the amateur psycho-tricksters are likely to try next. The seller was a decent bloke, as it turned out, apart from that silly hat.

The episode taught me more about the controlled, speedy people than about the seller who stood still. I can see how easy it is to control them. They are all selfish, spiteful and generally nasty to each other. They act as if they are, each one of them, the only tiger in the woods.

They think they are wolves when really, they are the sheep. Keep them moving fast so they don't realise and it's easy to control them. Every one of them is certain that they are the only important person on the planet and in that state of mind, they will listen to anything that starts with 'This is for YOU...'

Not for the plebs around you, but for you.

I think I can work with that.

Sunday 18 April 2010

Silly statistics on salt and sugar.

The Telegraph has a double scare in store. Salt and sugar in the same food! Oh, how can we survive? What will we do? Who will save us from this terror of essential nutrients that invade our body when we least expect it? Keeping us alive in defiance of Righteous diktat, these terrible foods stain our very souls with their sugary saltiness of Satan. Sweet and sour sinning - shocking.

If you believe this nonsense, if you succeed in cutting out all salt and sugar from your diet, you are going to die. Not quickly, it will take a week or two of intense agony before you succumb, but you will die much faster than a beer-swilling smoker who lives on pork scratchings and pizza.

If you eat too much sugar you will get fat. You will not necessarily end up with no teeth, that depends on whether you are familiar with the term 'toothbrush', but excess energy in any form will get converted to fat. The solution? Eat less and/or exercise more until you are at a weight you are happy with. Note: A weight you are happy with, not the weight the State demands you should be.

If you have too little carbohydrate in your diet you will first experience ketosis. Your breath will smell like acetone. That's because your body will burn fats for energy if it has no carbohydrate. It's an easy way to spot Atkins diet followers. It is not a good metabolic state to be in for too long. Your body is not supposed to work like that. Fat is there for those times when you don't get enough carbohydrate. You are not supposed to run that body on zero carbohydrate intake. You will break it. Reduce your carbohydrate intake to burn the fat off slowly and you'll feel better, you'll lose weight naturally and you won't end up with bat-wings and saggy folds because your skin will have time to contract as the weight goes down. If you want to be thin by tomorrow, that's up to you but you are going to do far more damage than you realise and you are going to end up looking as if you are wearing a sack.

If you run out of fat (which, as a good little drone, you aren't eating either), your body will burn proteins for energy. Since your brain needs glucose and a lot of it, your liver will have to work like crazy to turn protein into glucose and will end up with a lot of nitrogenous waste and that is going to do some damage to both your liver and kidneys. Both of which will, by now, be full of holes from ketoacidosis. It takes time but it takes considerably less time than alcoholic cirrhosis. Boozing yourself to death actually takes a lot longer than death by Righteous advice and it's more fun too.

If you eat too much salt, your kidneys will extract it from your blood and put it in your urine. If you eat far too much, you risk a kidney stone but eating enough to kill yourself would require serious, pathological dedication and astounding willpower in order to avoid drinking any water. On the plus side, if you do eat enough to kill yourself, your body will be pickled and will not need embalming. Suicide by salt is a very difficult path to take.

If you have too little salt, you'll die in pain. Ideally, there should be salt in your urine. It means your body has all it needs and has dumped the excess.

There is no need to measure your sugar and salt intake unless you have a medical condition that requires you to do so. All it takes is a bit of common sense and not getting silly about it. Eating sugar or salt by the spoonful is not going to be good for you. Not eating either at all will kill you.

So scare stories like this can have only one possible purpose. To kill as many idiots as possible.

Now, while I am not averse to a bit of stupidity-reduction in the population - there is far too much of it at present - I would prefer to reduce the stupidity levels by educating people rather than by making them even more stupid and then killing them. The State has evidently decided on the easy option.

The article is most definitely aimed at the stupid:

An analysis a number of popular breakfast cereals – many of which are marketed as being nutritious – showed that in many cases each bowl contains more than a quarter of the recommended daily sugar intake for an adult.

So? The five-a-day fruit and veg thing has been proven to be a made-up number, the booze units limit is a made-up number, the second and third hand smoke scares are entirely fabricated, and everyone is different. Someone working in the fields all day needs much more energy intake than someone sitting at a desk all day. A big guy needs more than a small guy. And then there's that magic word - 'adult'.

I am an adult. Nobody 'recommends' what I eat. I decide for myself. If I don't like it, I don't eat it. If I eat something that makes me feel ill, I don't eat any more of it. If I start to put on weight, I eat less and if I start to lose weight, I eat more. I count no calories and gauge my intake by whether my clothes feel too loose or too tight. These are not hard decisions for an adult to make. Adults do not need Nanny any more. Sadly, Nanny has prevented most people from becoming adult these days.

Many cereals also contain high salt levels, with the ten top-selling brands in Britain all containing more salt than a Cadbury Milk Chocolate Cake Bar or a Magnum Classic ice cream.

I don't know about you, but I have never considered chocolate or icecream to be particularly salty. So finding that a savoury food such as cereal contains more salt than icecream or chocolate comes as no surprise at all. How does that cereal compare with a bag of pork scratchings, I wonder?

Jonny Steel, (You're kidding. A Spandex-clad Food Avenger?) a spokesman for, said: “Consumers can end up thinking they are choosing a healthy cereal, often because some sound healthy or simply look healthy because of how they are marketed.

Adults choose foods they like. I'm not a big fan of cereals but I have been known to eat them, but only the ones coated in sugar or preferably, honey. I'm not even a big fan of breakfast. A cup of coffee will keep me going until teatime if I'm busy, as long as it has sugar in it. Some people like a bowl of cereal for breakfast. They are adults, it's their responsibility, leave them alone. The analysis is written on the sides of the packet and if someone doesn't like what's in there, they can choose not to buy it. It's not difficult. It's not as hard as deciding what colour to paint my pergola.

“Yet, as with any product bought, shoppers need to make sure they read the nutritional information on the packet to understand the content, otherwise they could accidentally be consuming more sugar or salt than planned.”

Anyone who plans their salt and sugar intake without a medical reason has no life at all. They might as well just lie down and die. Those with medical reasons to do so are already checking the labels and do not need to be reminded by Jonny Steel, The Masked Breakfast Man from Planet Dubious.

I am sure there are many perfectly fit and healthy people whose health has been wrecked by tailoring their salt and sugar intake to Righteous approved levels, instead of letting their body decide what it needs and listening to it. If it says 'drink water', drink water. If it says 'salt and sugar', eat them. If it throws something back or rushes it through to the other end, don't eat that again.

Unlike the makers of Buckfast, who responded to Righteous demand that they change their product-that-people-like into a product-those-people-don't-like with 'Awa' an' bile yer heid, ya wee bawbags', Kellogg's have caved in.

Kellogg’s said it is working to reduce the salt content of its cereals, which it said also contain iron, fibre, fortified vitamins and folic acid.

If they reduce the salt it will affect the taste. People who like the taste now will not like the taste in future. They will buy something else. Something with salt in it. As for the rest of their cringing exuses, they will cut no ice with the Righteous. They don't care about the good parts. They are only concerned with salt and sugar. Which are also good parts but the Righteous don't want you to have any. They don't want to let you decide for yourself, they must control you in every minute detail. If that kills you, tough. You obviously weren't sufficiently standard.

The way things are going, it'll soon only be we smokers who are left alive, because we ignore all this crap. Hell, if we can ignore the threat of lung cancer, we are not likely to worry about the threat of getting a little bulgy in the middle or of peeing brine (although that might sting a bit, and would probably induce us to put a little less salt on our deep-fried black pudding in batter with chips next time. A little lifestyle adjustment. Adults can do that without being ordered to).

If you're following all this nonsensical advice to the letter, you're going to suffer really badly and might even die. But then that's the price you pay for abdicating adulthood and letting the Righteous decide your life for you. I mean, I can see where people might want to let someone else decide whether to fire a missile or whether to let a terminally-ill patient die. Those are very hard choices indeed.

But to let someone else decide what you can have for breakfast? That hasn't happened to me since long before I left my parents' home. It is not going to happen to me now.

It's my life, I only have the one, and I will decide what to do with it, thanks. If I mess it up, that's my problem. I certainly don't want anyone else messing it up for me.

It's really, really time this country let go of Nanny's skirts.


Gonnae nae dae that?

Saturday 17 April 2010

A fulcrum-up.

I have sprained my wrist.

Okay, okay, get the mind bleach. It wasn't like that. It's not RSI (aka 'wanker's wrist' either). I did it gardening. I'm not exactly half a Charles Atlas and I decided to move my rhubarb because it was undermining the shed - which is already a bit tumbledown and in need of a new roof, door, walls and floor. One day. The window's good. I can keep that bit. It is a good and sound window. One day I will clean it.

The trouble is, it's so full of crap that replacing it could only be done by putting a new shed somewhere else, moving the stuff and then demolishing the old one and that's just too much bother. I mean, come on. I've done the garage and half the attic this year. I'm not doing the shed too.

So it went like this. I dug all around the rhubarb apart from the sides against the shed and compost bin, which I couldn't get at. It soon became apparent that I was not going to be able to move it so I split the root in two. It's ten years old, fed with that stuff cows leave lying around and very, very productive. In fact it's the only thing in the world that really loves bullshit and delights in being urinated on. Perhaps we should respond to politicians with 'tell it to the rhubarb'.

The place I intended to put it was a little higher, up a two-foot wall. The hole was already dug and composted and roughly three cubic feet of hole-in-the-dirt. The wall was not something I had considered might be a problem, it's not very high, but the rhubarb - even after splitting - was very heavy.

Ah, I thought, it might have been a long time ago but I do have an A-level in physics. Most of it has been wiped out by string theory and quantum witchcraft now but the bit about levers must surely still work.

It does. I lifted the root with a fork and wedged a board under it. Then I tied rope around the root and sat on the board, like an offset see-saw with the rhubarb on the long end, me on the short end and the wall as fulcrum. I pulled the rope and hauled the root up the board until my weight on the short end was enough to lift the board.

After a few false starts (if the board isn't central, the root falls off) I managed to get the root moving towards me.

Now, the new hole is not far from the wall and as the root approached, it reached a point where I could not get off the board or the root end would drop, and I couldn't pull the root any closer to me without moving myself backwards.

Over the hole.

It worked well for a while until the root's centre of gravity passed the fulcrum point. Then I was sitting in a hole with a large rhubarb root above and a good solid board below, crushing those parts nobody wants crushed and with only arms to pull myself out.

Eventually I did. Obviously. It would be a serious geek indeed who took a netbook gardening. Plus, if I hadn't, this post would have started with 'If you're in the area... help!'. Hmm. it might be an idea to take the netbook into the garden after all.

It turned out okay in the end. The rhubarb has been beaten into submission, the shed has heaved a sigh of relief, the compost bin is glad to be rid of the parasite that already had roots all through it and the other half of the root has been donated to a neighbour.

Then I tried to move some daffodils using a small hand-shovel, and sprained my wrist. Damn.

It's raining now. I am delighted! Let it pour.


I can't vote for any of these because I'm not in their constituencies. Pity.

In Devizes, Libertarian Nic Coome.

In Cambridge, Independent Old Holborn.

In Hornsey and Wood Green, Independent Dr. Rohen Kapur.

I hope they all win. Any others who need a mention?