Conjectures

This Spectator piece brings a couple of conjectures to mind:

1) Anyone who uses the phrase ‘pie in the sky’ is an idiot who should be ignored.

2) Anyone who believes absolute national debt, rather than national debt as a proportion of GDP, is a figure with any relevance to anything is an idiot who should be ignored.

These conjectures, happily, tie up with an existing known fact: that Fraser Nelson is an idiot who should be ignored.

Edifying spectacle of the day

Read a selection of grumpy middle-aged Tories and Libertoonians slate 18-year-old kids for being pompously grumpy about getting a stupid question in their History A-level.

CHILD PSYCHOLOGY NEWSFLASH: bright kids are often pompously grumpy, and are usually far too worried about exams.

…however, the concept of right-wing bloggers being upset by grumpy pomposity is leaning towards ‘white males are the most oppressed group’ levels of un-self-aware lunacy… oh, wait, most right-wing bloggers believe that too.

At least the kids will mostly grow out of it.

Twitter Weekly Updates for 2009-06-28

  • Lewes = pretty town. A23 between Croydon & Elephant & Castle = road to, from & via hell. Glad to be back in N19 #
  • RT @PreachyPreach Germany does its best to ensure a long prolonged recession. http://bit.ly/h9XE6 #
  • “Miners and police unite in beating the crap out of Greenpeace anti-coal protestors” #worldwithoutThatcher #
  • If Stephen Hester makes his full pay packet, govt profits on its RBS stake will be £100 for every person in the UK. I’m happy with that deal #
  • RT @antonvowl Only the Conservatives could be angry that a Conservative got elected as Speaker #
  • Does this guy get time off his sentence for the kneecapping: http://bit.ly/19tGVc ? Suspect not, but would probably be fairer if so #
  • (and would deter other vigilantes) #
  • Seems 2b working: RT @themanwhofell if the Incredible Hulk is your favourite Marvel superhero, apply a green tint to your avatar. Please RT #
  • Evening defined ‘bittersweet’, dinner with 2 women I used to be in love with & vv, now all friends, great time, depressing bed-home-solo #
  • Conversation of the night: parallels between Ezra Pound’s antisemitic anti-bank Depression poetry and modern anti-bank narratives. ENJOYED #
  • Someone just followed me offering ‘total happiness’. I blocked him. #
  • RT @bengoldacre David Tredinnick MP claims £510 for astrology software: guess this makes him both stupid AND stupid #
  • RT@themanwhofell I’m not going to Glastonbury but I may walk to East Finchley or Wood Green or Crouch End, possibly wearing a hair shirt. #
  • RT @mrpower Prince Charles makes effort to reduce personal spending. Now brushes own teeth and wipes own arse. Next stage: Feeding himself. #
  • MP expenses PR man is paranoid loony: ‘this is dynamite, it’s big trouble, I could be arrested, deported or disappeared’ http://is.gd/1bFQw #
  • interesting one – RT @pressgazette Journalism job vacancy: Online news editor for Press Gazette http://tinyurl.com/mqd28v #
  • I hate the BBFC, they’re a bunch of spacky mongoloid joeys: http://bit.ly/TD3xY #
  • Things I don’t understand about Twitter: how an obvious spambot like @createincome has almost as many ‘followers’ as ‘following’ #
  • Vile views, positive outcome – Nixon’s racism moderated his opposition to abortion: http://tinyurl.com/lzn79o (via @jonnelledge) #
  • Anyone who plays music in an office should be instantly shot. Ditto anyone who blows an airhorn. I hate salespeople. #
  • Whistling, also. Indeed, whistling in any context outside of a musical performance should be punished by boiling alive. #
  • For all Patrick Foster’s awfulness, at least he screwed over the twunts at the ABD: http://8mpe5.tk (via @TACJ who seems less impressed) #
  • RT @PreachyPreach RIP Swells. http://bit.ly/16aUc6 #
  • This makes perfect sense, although doubtless will outrage silly people: http://bit.ly/nF1Rz #
  • This is absolutely WIN – brilliant demolition of Tory strategy post-2007 and vindication of what the gov’t have done: http://bit.ly/bJvBg #
  • Anyone want a ticket for Bruce Springsteen in Hyde Park on Sunday? Offers accepted #
  • Blimey, Michael Jackson’s dead and the first I knew of it was my friends’ sarky Facebook comments. #
  • RT @bigdaddymerkfor all the joking, I’m kinda sad. Jacko made ace music and was a part of my childhood. rest in peace you freaky weirdo. #
  • Actually, that’s the anthem, innit – “Shine On You Freaky Weirdo”. If only Quincy Jones and Eddie Van Halen were as talented as… oh, wait #
  • It’s actually pretty rude, from a UK pundit POV, for Jacko to die during Glasto – they’ll be far too wankered (inspired by @richardherring) #
  • RT @bigdaddymerk for all the joking, I’m kinda sad. Jacko made some ace music + was a part of my childhood. rest in peace you freaky weirdo #
  • (the @bigdaddymerk tweet was originally before the ‘Shine On” tweet, but I messed up the quoting. You wanna make something of it?) #
  • Nasty, but funny – RT @JamieRoss7 Michael Jackson must have finally destroyed that painting of an ageing black man he kept in his attic. #
  • I like the fact that #Rip Micheal Jackson is a trending topic. Whenever I’m dead, I hope #Rip Jhon Band is similarly popular #
  • “He’s a tinfoil-hatted, privacy obsessed gimp who runs a very dull blog” http://tinyurl.com/lrfm2f – oh, wait… #
  • Whilst I hate Perez Hilton, this is EXCELLENT: http://twitpic.com/8et2f – as is anything that upsets the morons who’re upset by #jacksonfail #
  • Everyone connected with the Evening Standard should be sent to Wimbledon Common and enslaved by wombles #
  • Nigel Williams, author of The Wimbledon Poisoner, would never stoop so low as to write for the Evening Standard #
  • RT @Habitat_UK – I can’t believe Michael Jackson died during Wimbledon – now buy some furniture #toomanymemes #
  • Mass moonwalk 6pm today @ Liverpool St. Please RT #
  • Grumpy pretentious middle-aged wankers wankify: http://brsxh.tk #
  • Tenuous: http://tinyurl.com/lcvklt #
  • Irresponsible FTW: http://tinyurl.com/mdchcq (from B3ta) #
  • waiting for train to office to train to train to airport to plane to lunch tomorow #
  • to plane to other office to hotel to plane to train to train to HOME! #
  • people keep saying today is muggy. rubbish, i haven’t been mugged once #
  • suspect india in monsoon will be hotter, humider, anyway… #
  • Private Eye definitely becoming Torier and more twattish. If such a thing possible. #
  • UPGRADE woo! #

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Yes, it’s fucking political

Frank Dobson spoke nothing but truth last month:

‘Be warned,’ he said, ‘the Lib Dems and the Tories have not abandoned party politics.’ There was, he alleged, a three-part strategy. When they had disposed of the Speaker, they would demand Gordon’s resignation. If they got that, they would demand an immediate general election on the grounds that we couldn’t have yet another Labour leader without an electoral mandate. ‘And anyone who thinks that an immediate general election would be of benefit to the people who voted us in, is not on this planet.’

From Chris Mullin’s excellent account of Westminster life during the surreal days of ‘well-paid people with expense accounts use them; remind me why we’re supposed to care’ [*]-gate.

[*] no, really don’t.

I’m not entirely convinced this is true

Here:

Let’s be clear: the international economy almost stopped dead last autumn. We were within days of cashpoints throughout the Western world refusing to cough up money and of automated transactions, including payments of wages, simply freezing.

Really? Anyone? Davies?

Banned Katie Perry upskirt video [*]

The Economist’s Charlemagne blog has a good piece on why Vaclav Klaus is being utterly ridiculous when he claims that the reassurances being made to Ireland and the UK over the Lisbon Treaty mean that he should hold off ratification:

Imagine that an internet rumour had started that Marmite (or baked beans, if you cannot stand Marmite) contained minute traces of pork fat, and this caused a fuss in British Jewish and/or Muslim circles. Then imagine that one supermarket offered to solve the problem by putting a kosher mark on the label, and another, with a big market share in northern England said they preferred to say it was halal on the label, and the whole thing became a fuss about multiculturalism. You could easily imagine the makers preferring to avoid putting any religious markings on the product at all. But one constant would remain through all of this fuss about whether Marmite is vegetarian, or baked beans kosher or halal. What was inside the jars and cans would not have changed “one iota”.

[*] well, if I wrote ‘good piece on the Lisbon Treaty’, who the hell would click through?

Twitter Weekly Updates for 2009-06-21

  • Lunch & wine are required. #
  • The Last Boleyn Girl seems about as terrible as that sort of shit usually is. Hoping Jess will tire of it before we miss House #
  • Sorry, director, The Other Boleyn Girl was OK. Scarlett Johansson was heartbreakingly beautiful, but I suppose that’s what she’s for. #
  • I love Mondays. Oh, wait, no, it’s that other one… ‘hate’, that’s the bunny. #
  • Trying to decide which of ‘hunger’ and ‘not wanting to be rained on’ is most important motivator for me #
  • Call me a bleeding heart eejit, but 4 years in jail for sending pervy emails to 15-year-olds seems kind-of harsh: http://tinyurl.com/ktsd4k #
  • Wondering whether or not it was a good idea to use the same name as my Twitter ID and my online dating ID #
  • RT @dnotice I forgot to take my #homeopathy pill last night. Does this mean I’ve overdosed? #science #
  • A rather sweet Yank perspective on London; somehow it feels like it’s from 30 years ago… http://is.gd/13qcc #
  • RT @antonvowl I’m worried about my cloak of anonymity. I’m sure I had it around here somewhere #
  • No, he took *some of your vast fortune*, not your life, you daft overmaterialist twat: http://tinyurl.com/nouqzp #
  • RT @bengoldacre Anonymous blogger exposed by Eady: can we expose bad judges please? http://tr.im/oJaa – I’m angrier, but he hits the point #
  • XKCD made me laugh out loud at my desk today: http://xkcd.com/598/ #
  • Can’t read the word ‘particleboard’ without thinking of http://is.gd/14lUF , which is a problem given that I publish http://is.gd/14lYA #
  • Absolutely excellent: http://is.gd/14pnL #
  • This comment is also good: http://tinyurl.com/lwognm #
  • RT @Herring1967 Who is Virgilio Anderson? Please Retweet. #virgilioanderson #
  • RT @widnblog Prisons released from mere function http://tinyurl.com/m5fef3 #
  • Richard Rogers is excellent; if you don’t like his work you’re a philistine and almost certainly have a small penis. FACT #
  • (yes, even if you’re a girl) #
  • Lefties, lefties will tear themselves apart, again #politicsinjokes #rupertreadisatwat #
  • Harmless comedians jailed for, err, nothing: http://bit.ly/17tyCL – graffiti is jolly and harmless; if you mind it, you’re a cunt #
  • & no, they didn’t ‘cost the taxpayer gbp70k’, TfL’s insane practice of erasing graffiti urgently instead of waiting til the next repaint did #
  • RT @edent: http://twitpic.com/7n0jr A police officer has just asked me to delete this photo of her van in a disabled bay #
  • Home educators really are paranoid loons: http://is.gd/15j8B – and no, that doesn’t mean I think HE should be banned, just regulated… #
  • RT @mrpower Why do environmentalists trust science when it comes to climate change but not genetic engineering? http://is.gd/15qdo #
  • Dragna, Quality name. Girl/dragon/combo. I like. Staying out tonight = unequivocally worthwhile #
  • RT @anniemole Hope you’re all smiling as today’s apparently the happiest day of the year http://is.gd/169Z4 #
  • Actually I’m grimly clinging onto consciousness trying to ignore the world’s most epic hangover, but chacun a son gout etc. #
  • “Psychologist Dr Cliff Arnall” is a twat #
  • Quality trompe l’oeil: http://bit.ly/IFfSb – I’m hoping for outcome no. 1 #ihatecyclists (via @LDN) #
  • Today is dragging. #
  • RT @antonvowl @bounder – Worst Daily Mail poll ever. Vote yes to skew the results and pass it on http://bit.ly/w4b6Q #
  • Just heard 1 Canada Square described as the “Thatcher Memorial Obelisk”. That’s quite wonderful. #
  • Haha, excellent: http://bit.ly/ntv9V #
  • (I’ve just been bummed by a) Priest #irishmovies #
  • One Wedding, A Fight, and Four Funerals #irishmovies #
  • This is epic skillz – http://is.gd/16Hob – and reminds me of the time my friend met Nina Simone #
  • Sorry, that was supposed to be RT’d @anattendantlord #
  • Michael Collins (would have made a good president instead of that useless hick twat Valera, shame the IRA shot him) #irishmovies #
  • Sean of the Dead #irishmovies #
  • Correlli Barnett claims to be a historian. He is mistaken: http://is.gd/17eiB – least accurate account of 20th century UK history EVER #
  • I caught @mrpower lying on http://www.twables.com/twotweetslie/guess/mrpower #twables #
  • If you can’t find the Fritzl book, another Father’s Day option: http://bit.ly/HCfJ1 #
  • This is unspeakably vile: http://tinyurl.com/kmx8og #hangthedailymailandeveryonewhobuysit #

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Corrigan FTW

David Mitchell is entirely correct on the wheelie bin pseudo-scandal, as one might expect:

I can almost hear the Oxfam advert: “This is Andrea. Every week, she has to walk three bins all the way down the street, round the corner and into the backyard. It’s either that or people will see her bins. It’s crazy, but you can help.”

Strikes: yes; wildcats: no

From the list of ‘things that don’t get said very often’, here’s a very sensible comment from CiF on the Total refinery strike:

I’m very sorry to say it, but these wildcat strikers are idiots. Nothing wrong with striking at all – but always, always, always make sure it is an official strike endorsed by an official ballot and thus with the full force of law on their side – that way they can’t be arbitarily sacked for striking.

Instead these wildcatters seem to be ignoring their own union procedure and think that they can simply do what they feel like regardless. And now they are shocked they’ve been sacked.

Sheesh – it’s not as though the miners strike was centuries ago and has gone from folk memory. It was fairly recent and most union people learnt the central lesson, which was always ballot your members before striking to make it an official strike. That way you have the law on your side.

These wildcatters appear to be too stupid to learn from history and they’ve paid the price.

As always, Rick at FCFT is good on this one too. Meanwhile, Dave Osler has a bit of a hard-on for the strikers over at LC – fair enough, if you’re an old Trot you have to take your pleasures where you can find them…

The idle musings of John B