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January, 2009:


Wanna read the only piece of poetry I have ever written in my entire life?

Years ago I had a friend who was a bit of a goth, so I knocked this up for her:

He walks as evil through the night
In nightmare climes ‘neath shadowed skies;
And all that’s worst of dark and night
Meet in his aspect and his eyes;
All deepened by that dreadful blight
Which hell to baleful night supplies.

With apologies to Lord Byron

Ok, so it was a rip off. Still.

Why Iran is different

If I had a quid for every time I’d heard someone accuse the US and UK of “hypocrisy” because we have nukes yet oppose Iran having them I would be blogging on a diamond encrusted solid platinum keyboard. From the Maldives, whilst being fellated by supermodels.

The things that gets my goat about that argument are twofold. It is always said with a smug self-assurance of someone who just knows it’s the killer line in the debate and it’s utter bollocks.

The end of WWII saw three new weapons pitch-up – the jet plane, the assault rifle and the atom bomb. Which do you reckon has killed the fewest people since 1945? OK. Yes I know the deaths from the bombings of Hiroshima and Nagasaki didn’t end in 1945 but if you want a Sword of Damocles that randomly claims victims after the fight then I reckon, in total, you can’t beat landmines for the enduring misery they cause.

My point is that in responsible hands nuclear weapons are the least killy of all weapons. My definition of “responsible” here is rather fluid. Both Joe Stalin’s Russia and Mao’s China had nukes. Nobody in their right mind would think of those two as paragons of rationality or, to put it bluntly, on the side of the angels but… They were at base-level pragmatic, reasonable and could be deterred. It is I think significant that most of the movies and books about a possible WWIII lay the blame on individual nutters or systemic cock-ups and not on a leader thinking on the whole turning the air Uranius would be a wise move. Because for all their many faults Mao and Joe weren’t totally deranged. And neither were our lot.

Now I dunno if Armanidinnerjacket is as nucking futz as he gives the impression. I have no idea why he wants nukes. I can see a very rational reason why he wants them. It would make Iran impregnable. Regardless of what regional proxy devilment the mullahs got up to there could never be an “Operation Iranian Freedom” if Iran was armed with nukes. No matter how repugnant the Iranian regime became there is no way regime change would be a viable option. Nuclear weapons in short are the ultimate innoculation against global opinion. Now I’m not saying that’s good but it might be on the mind of beards and be their motive. If that were the case, it would be unpleasant but we could live with a nuclear Iran. Because essentially Iran would have nuclear weapons for the same reasons everyone else has – as an insurance policy and to join the international dick-swinging contest*. But, and this is a big but, we don’t know. The Iranian regime (and most Iranians I have met are refugees and are frankly quite embarrassed that thousands of years of Persian civilization has culminated in a deranged Islamic Republic) is either utterly unhinged, partially unhinged or pretending to be unhinged. And the problem is we don’t know which of those is the case.

When Nikita Sergeyevich banged his shoe at the UN and promised to “bury” The West we didn’t all panic. It was clear what his schtick was. He was clearly referring to the fact that he saw communism as economically superior to capitalism. And as well as that we all knew by then that he was a rough bugger who called a spade a shovel and didn’t have any time for the “niceties”. When Mahmoud pitches up at the UN and shouts his gob off then… God knows if the Dinnerjacket in chief** is merely pretending to be unhinged or is the full nine yards bonkers but simply because we don’t know the rational deterrence that worked against the Soviets and the Chinese won’t work here.

Because we knew that the minute Uncle Joe and Comrade Mao got the bomb they’d become even more Bolshie but we also knew that they were never in a million years going to unleash global apocalypse on us unless things really went very badly South. We don’t know that about Iran. Let’s say someone in your town buys a gun. Let’s say it’s someone you play golf with and have known for years. It’s not remarkable is it? It just doesn’t occur on your threat radar, nor should it. But let’s imagine instead the guy who bought a gun has a history of paranoid schizophrenia and tortured small animals at school and just last week was kicked out of the local pub for threatening a regular. Then you worry. Nuclear weapons are similarly not the issue. Their ownership is. Friendly countries owning them is fine. Unfriendly countries owning them is a problem but a problem that the last 60 years makes clear is “do-able”. Unstable and potentially unhinged countries owning them is the undiscovered country.

The Cold War created a whole new branch of math. It created “Game Theory”. Now this was invented in the USA but it is inconceivable that the propeller-heads of Whitehall and the Ecoles Superior and the academicians of Moscow and Beijing weren’t thinking along similar lines. Can we honestly say the same about the Iranians? Recall this is a country in which the Revolutionary Guards are a law unto themselves. This is a country whose President can cheerfully state without irony that is a homosexual free zone. This is a country which has vowed to destroy another country. This is a country where the official religion is Shia Islam and part of that is a belief that the hidden imam Mardi will appear miraculously for a final and utterly destructive battle. OK. Lots of cultures and religions bang-on about final battles. Very few make it official policy. We are not about to toss Sweden out of the EU because of their concrete plans for staging Ragnarok by 2015. Mainly because they have no such plans and anyway the Fenris Wolf is unwell. We do though have to consider that the Iranians (maybe – who knows?) are planning Armageddon on a similar timescale***.

That is not rational. And that is the danger. We really don’t know what Iran will try. That is their strength. The Soviets could count on the size of their country, their manpower and resources and being able to field a hell of a lot of tanks. That is a symmetric threat. The US was hardly short of manpower, resources or tanks either. Iran is. They don’t have the manpower, they don’t have the resources and their military is equipped with clapped-out junk from the ’70s. What they do have is absolute unpredictability. If that walks down the aisle with something measured in kilotons then the world is much closer to a nuclear war then it ever was when the USA and the USSR stared across the Arctic wastes at each other with enough warheads to kill everyone on the planet thrice. Because those two were rational players of the game. And that is an ancient game which is understood very well by it’s players. And that is why it was never actually unpacked from the box. If I may use a footballing metaphor. The Cold War was Liverpool, Manchester United and Arsenal playing for the FA Cup and Iran threatening to join the top-table are the equivalent of Wimbledon’s 1980s “Crazy Gang” lead by Vinnie Jones pitching-up. Their only strength is that they are impossible to predict and that they play dirty. And that makes them dangerous. Not because it means they can win but because they can ensure everyone else loses.

Inspired by Infidel753′s comment here.

*Lets not forget that. Recall India and Pakistan developing nukes. It was cricket by other means.
**I know he’s technically subordinate to some Ayatollah because Iran has a rather odd constitution. That really doesn’t help. It’s rather like the Nazis. Their ministeries were competing fiefdoms as well. Their nuclear research was handed to… Guess. Clue. It wasn’t the Wehrmacht or the Kriegsmarine or the Luftwaffe because the bun-fight which would have ensued between those chaps would have ended with piano wire at dawn. OK then – it was the Post Office. Postman Gunter and his black and white cat directed German nuclear research.
***I’m not a believer but there is a lot of truth in the Bible. There has to be otherwise why would the folk tales of a bronze-age tribe still captivate over a billion people in the age of cell-phones? Now the site of Armageddon is true. In a way. Well, not true as much as likely. The same places have a tendency to be the site of battles again and again throughout history. Why? Because if it was strategic to Caeser it probably still is and Megiddo has been fought over many, many times.

Barrys Bushisms

Bushism Scare #1

Barry has told us he is planning to base his middle east policy on some fantasy about America once (20 to 30 years ago) having had some sort of mutual respect partnership with “the Muslim world”.

Now we know this is a load of twaddle, Islamic authorities have been trying it on, whenever they thought they could get away with it, ever since the United States happened. And the only thing that ever controlled their predation was force – the Marine Anthem doesn’t include “To the Shores of Tripoli” as empty rhetoric. For Barry to claim otherwise is ignorance or stupidity on his part – and either one scares the living crap out of me.

In 1787-9 the threat from the Barbary states in North Africa was a major element in persuading the thirteen states to ratify the Constitution, and create a government strong enough to protect the new country. Even so, by 1801 the US were so dhimmified they were paying 20% of all Federal revenues as protection money, Jizya, to the Islamic raptors.

So, when it comes to Americas history with Islam, Barry is either ignorant or a moron. And worse, his advisors must be as well.

Ya think that if Georgie boy had mouthed such crap the oh so objective MSM wouldn’t have been all over him like a cheap suit?

Bushism Scare #2

Barry tries to walk through a window.

Who cares if he did or didn’t? Where is the MSM playing this over and over again? Showing us how stupid he is?

Yah yah yaya yah. Barry is so stupid he can’t tell a window from a door.


During the campaign both Bazza and Sidekick Joe were given a free pass on their incessant bushisms, but sod it. Pity I don’t remember what they were any more, I just didn’t care that much about details.

I have never been sure how to deal with Barry, should he be treated with the same loathsome hatred and vilification that his supporters showed George W, or are we, the sane, better than that? Should Barry be given the benefit of the doubt until all doubt is removed?

Well, I vote for the second option, and you know what? I think doubt has been removed. Already.

Lord, in the memory of all the saints who from their labors rest, and in the joy of a new beginning, we ask you to help us work for that day when black will not be asked to get back, when brown can stick around — (laughter) — when yellow will be mellow — (laughter) — when the red man can get ahead, man — (laughter) — and when white will embrace what is right.

Well, at least George didn’t allow blatant race hatred at his inauguration. But, then, Barry did sit through twenty years of these rants and never saw a problem.

And this:

But if there aren’t enough skilled professionals to do the jobs involving new technologies, the stimulus will just increase the wages of the professionals who already have the right skills rather than generate many new jobs in these fields. And if construction jobs go mainly to white males who already dominate the construction trades, many people who need jobs the most — women, minorities, and the poor and long-term unemployed — will be shut out.

Yeah, white males really don’t need jobs like wot other more preferred groups do.

Change my arse. It is just going to be four solid years of self righteous ignorance, with added bonus of race and class baiting by the left.

So, not only did the bushisms not pack up and leave with the change of prez, but the race hustlers moved in and joined them.

Well, fuck you Barry. I have known some real shits in my life, but most people I have known are just that, people. Honest, honourable and decent people who just plain don’t give a flying fuck about skin colour. In fact Barry, the only real, honest to god, Protocols quoting, skin colour judging racists I have EVER known in my life have been leftwards voting.

Nice supporters you got there.

Yeah, why

If I wasn’t a durn furriner I might be tempted to ask my Congress Critter. However, as I am, and I don’t have one, I will just repost this instead.

It seems to me that funding for the Polywell Fusion Project being run by EMC2 Fusion has stalled.
So I want to do something about that. When ever you post a comment on a blog use this tagline:

Why hasn’t Polywell Fusion been funded?

If the blog allows embeded urls you can post this:
Why hasn’t Polywell Fusion been funded?
or this:
Why hasn’t Polywell Fusion been funded?
<a href="">IEC Fusion Technology blog</a>

Contact your Congress Critters and President too.

House of Representatives
The Senate
The President

What is Polywell Fusion?

Easy Low Cost No Radiation Fusion

Rick Nebel Updates The Latest News


Well, I didn’t need the video. I already had faith.

Pig ignorant

America was not born as a colonial power, and that the same respect and partnership that America had with the Muslim world as recently as 20 or 30 years ago, there’s no reason why we can’t restore that.

The Onetm wishes to bring peace to the middle east, but with a knowledge of both history and diplomacy best described as abysmal.

If this really is his understanding of the place for the last 20, 30, 40 years – we are so fucked.

H/T Jihad Watch

You want some idea of what was actually happening to Americas relationship with the Middle East/Muslim world 20 and 30 years ago, try this.


Is this the standard of his understanding of the problems facing America and the world? Is this the basis on which he is going to make decisions?


Is the man really that stupid? For fucks sake, he was eighteen years old when Billy Carters stupid brother shafted the Shah and gave Iran to Khomeini. Was Barry blind and deaf then, and in all the years since?

No wonder he thinks the worlds problems can be solved, if only he weally weally twies his best.

We are just so so fucked.

Physics for Poets

You know we come in two sorts. We are either attempting to comprehend the true nature of reality or we’re melting ice in a bucket. Some of us are poets. And some are merely prose stylists.

Now, I was taught Solar System Dynamics* by Carl Murray at QMC and Professor Murray is a “Physics for poets” type. You may have seen him. Queen Mary is a very media savvy college and the likes of the BBC drag out Carl to give brief comments on NASA probes to the outer planets.

I actually have an early draft of his book**, scrawled upon and tea-ringed by my twenty two year old self… Let’s have a look shall we…


OK, so that’s the poetry. Now let’s turn to the back and have a butcher’s at the Physics. Those of you of a nervous disposition when it comes to math might want to look away now because in Appendix 2, lurking Smaug-like is The Disturbing Function. It is only expanded to fourth order in both direct and indirect parts, possibly both canonical and secular if not also real and imaginary***



Now you wanna know the best bit? That’s pages one and two. I left out the next 34. Also that is written in a very condensed form and, as I said, only to fourth order. Disturbing function. It disturbed me alright. And I had just graduated with a top-notch degree from a top-notch University and I was young and funded and in London and it was the age of Britpop and life was cool and we used to hang in the same clubs as Jarvis Cocker and a friend of a friend shagged Sophie Ellis Bextor (before she was famous, or even sixteen) round the back of a kebab shop on Fleet Street but I digress… Though you get the general idea of invincibility. Because the scamps that we were we got up to some capers I can tell you…

But what, you are no doubt wondering does that have to do with the disturbing function? And what indeed is the disturbing function for? Well, it’s a partial solution to the vexed three body problem. You see you can’t get a closed form (neat) solution to the mutual gravitational interaction of three bodies. Even treating them as point masses. It just don’t integrate. So we have the disturbing function. And I’m sure you’ll agree it’s a bit of a ‘mare ain’t it?

Two bodies – fine. Keplerian Orbits and all that jazz and they’re easy but bring in a third body and it gets messy. So why am I boring you with all this astrophysical dullness? Simple. The disturbing function has to be worked out on computers. The principle of it goes way back but nobody got it right. It was not until computers were used that the expansion was possible with any degree of accuracy. You might think it looks evil but just imagine trying to work it out, sat at a ledger, by candlelight. Science has wrestled with few demons worse than that.

But surely the three-body problem is simple? It should be down? It should be on the canvas and it’s second thrown the towel into the ring by now? No. It’s alive and kicking. It may just be three point masses interacting by a 1/r2 field but it’s nightmarishly difficult. We have cludges like the disturbing function not because we aren’t smart enough but because the problem cannot be solved. Not because it’s too complicated but because it can’t be solved in principle.

And that’s particle mechanics. And as any fule knows particle mechanics is much easier than dealing with a continuum such as a fluid. Like the atmosphere for example. The atmosphere also interacts with the oceans. Both interact with the biosphere which is of course an adaptive system. All interact with our tame G2 yellow dwarf (aka Sol) which quite frankly we don’t really understand that well at all.

I have mentioned Solar System Dynamics but that wasn’t really my field. My field was fluids. And if any bugger tells you the “science is settled” on global warming then I advise you to laugh yourself hoarse and remember the disturbing function. Because anyone who claims that the “science is settled” is claiming that a scientific problem several orders of magnitude more complex**** than anything ever solved before is indeed down.

And not just that but solved by the fiat of a committee. With the help of a failed politician and profoundly successful cunt.

And then remember the disturbing function and our limits. Maybe even remember the ultimate “Physics for Poets” physicist, Richard Feynman. Whilst designing the “gadget” at Los Alamos in the forties his wife, Arline, was dying of TB, a bacterial infection. We have never known it all and complexity is the eternal stumbling block. You want an atom bomb designing? You want a laser? You want a moon-shot? Ask a physicist. You want complexity? Ask someone else. Because we are poets and we just don’t know.

*It used to be called “Celestial Mechanics” but I think we can all agree that that sounds needlessly messianic.
**I say book but it was a really a spiral-bound draft back then typeset in Latex and photocopied.
***There are imaginary numbers. They are multiples of the square root of -1.
**** Science, especially physics is exceptionally good at tackling the difficult. It is remarkably poor at tackling the complex. In principle all biology reduces to chemistry and all chemistry to physics. Except that ain’t how it is in practice. There is still a place for the bug-collectors and the smell-merchants and that is for a good reason. You can write out the Schroedinger equation for a dog but it won’t get you anywhere. If you wanna know dogs then you’ll get much further going to the park and throwing a stick.

Towelhead Mentalist Of The Day

This guy is utterly nucking futz. His take on history is three stops from Dagenham. He is, in short, a loon. And quite what he’s up to fiddling with his tea towel is beyond me…

I know that’s a jokey intro… But the vid is actually pretty hardcore and not for the sort of people who see such things and defenestrate their LCD panels.

H/T The Cynical Dragon. I honestly, cross my heart and hope to die, will blog something original soon because lifting stuff from the 11th best Blog in Wales is beginning to look a tad lazy.

Disproportionate Response!

So there’s a basketball game and it ends up with a score of 100-0.

And a coach gets fired for it.

Which coach?

Oddly enough not the coach of the team that was mauled.

I have played basketball and 100-0 is shocking. The coach of the losing team should have done the decent thing and quietly ended it all in the parking lot or at least decided that his or her talents lay elsewhere.

I was pants at basketball. but the fact I kept on being beaten did not discourage me. It was a good thing. I learned that I wasn’t good at everything and to keep up with the math and science. In fact I was abysmal at almost all team sports. I’m OK at five-a-side footie, a demon at crazy golf and a volleyball assassin*. I couldn’t hack full-size footy or Rubgy and never saw the point of cricket. I assume there is a point to it. Either that or it is simply organised loafing indulged in by mentalists and the colonies.

The idea that playing to your best and giving the other side an epic twatting is “Not Christian” is beyond belief because ultimately it doesn’t really matter. And the fact this happened in Texas frankly scares me.

C’mon folks… If you want a network installed talk to me. If you want Russian turned into English talk to my wife. Get that the wrong way round and there will be (an expensive) big blue flash and a diplomatic incident. It’s horses for courses. I have no idea what the fuck a gerund is and the missus wouldn’t know a Fourier Transform if it bit her on the ass. That is the way the world works. People pay other people to do things they can’t do themselves.

*The only team game at my school which was played with mixed sides… That might be related but I have a vicious serve on me nonetheless. I’m also a fair Badminton player – it must be something to do with high nets… Or possibly because I played against an ex of mine at Nottingham University and there was no way on the God’s Clean Earth I was gonna let RC beat me. Not after she dumped me for a twat from Macclesfield called Trevor. Last I heard he’s a Human Rights solicitor.

Hell’s Teeth!

A woman in LA has given birth to octuplets. I thought that only happened on The Simpsons.

Bringing them up is gonna be one hell of a job. I saw an interview with the last parents of octuplets – a couple from Texas. I say couple but the fella said nowt. I suspect the power of speech departed from him when kid number six was dragged out. It would from me… I am the very model of a modern kidult. My wife and I find caring for a small black and white cat enough of a trial without chitlins as well. But eight at once! Eight! Hell’s teeth! Pop can kiss goodbye to his hair and his dreams of buying a Porsche. He’s gonna be driving a minibus for the foreseeable.

Seriously though. Best of luck to them. They’re gonna need it. My wife (who has Implanon – God bless biochemistry) said, “It’ll be like hosting a kid’s birthday party 24/7, 365″. I concurred and then thought, “Jesus Christ, what about the actual birthday party!”. Or sending them to college?

Anyway. Hope Ma and kids are doing fine and Pa isn’t too shell-shocked ‘cos it’s folks like that that keep our end-up (so to speak) demographically because there’s way too many selfish sods like me and the missus who really can’t be doing with the breeding. And hats off to the obstetric team (all 46 of them!) because that was not a normal day at the office now was it? I mean they were only expecting seven! Eight though… Wow… Ain’t that a complete basketball team?

I am, are you?

I scored 5.98 on “right” and 6.47 on “libertarian” which places me firmly in the “Right Social Libertarian” camp. To be honest I actually thought I would come out as more socially liberal but the quiz does state that on social matters it is pretty much aimed at Americans. For example the one question on gun-control is firmly framed in terms of the Second Amendment. I’d love to be able to legally own a gun but not particularly to engage in an armed insurrection but just because shooting stuff is cool and popping a cap in a crim’s ass is cool as well. Perhaps more pertinently my “social liberalism” is very much of the “don’t give a toss” variety. I mean I’m 35 and married (to a woman) and as far as I know I’ve been straight for all those years* so I can’t get that het-up about gay marriage either way.

Interestingly, the quiz also shows an average score which is much more economically to the left of me and slightly more socially liberal than me. Hmm… I’d be more interested if it showed some kinda scatter-graph. I am curious about how attitudes to things relate. Now that would be very interesting because as it stands the test is ultimately somewhat crude. Example. There is a question about a “state language” and immigrants having to learn it. Well, how do I answer? I dunno. While obviously folks planning on living here ought to learn English I don’t think that is a matter for officialdom. It’s just common-sense. I mean what sort of job can anyone do in a foreign country if they don’t speak the language? It’s essentially self-regulating or should be. And there’s another one which caused a little head-scratching for me, “It does not make sense to understand the motivations of terrorists because they are self-evidently evil.” Well, I think it does make sense to understand the motives of terrorists. Many lefties would agree but for a very different reason. I have plowed my way through The Qu’ran (when I could have been reading Terry Pratchett and actually enjoying it) to understand what the likes of Mohammed Atta were motivated by. That is understanding in the Sun Tzu sense. It is not empathy which is what I suspect that question was driving at. I understand Islamic terrorism in terms of a logical structure going back to the Qu’ran and hadith but that in no way implies that I approve of it or “feel the pain of the Ummah”. I don’t because whilst it is a logical structure it is one built upon absurd (and evil) axioms.

Anyway, take the quiz. It’s flawed but it ain’t too bad and I am curious how you lot score.

These are my full results…

My Political Views
I am a right social libertarian
Right: 5.98, Libertarian: 6.47

Political Spectrum Quiz

My Foreign Policy Views
Score: 4.7

Political Spectrum Quiz

My Culture War Stance
Score: -3.33

Political Spectrum Quiz

*I have been known to dance very camply to Suede but that’s not exactly full-on cock ‘n’ bum fun now is it? How do you not dance camply to this? I am though “lesbian curious” but isn’t everyone?

Cruel And Unusual

Haven’t the poor sods in Gaza suffered enough without this?

A few points…

Cat Stevens became Yusuf Islam donkey’s years ago. So why is he still always referred to as “Yusuf Islam, formerly Cat Stevens”. Not that I ever rated his off-key caterwauling anyway.

The new recording of the song ‘The day the world gets round’, originally recorded by George Harrison, features Yusuf on vocals and Klaus Voorman, known to many as the fifth Beatle, on bass.

OK, I appreciate there have been a fair number of “fifth Beatles” but Klaus Voorman? Who the fuck is Klaus Voorman? Well presumably he’s a bass player and therefore instantly forgettable but beyond that it ain’t ringing any bells for Nick here.

It is good to see Mr Islam doing work for a “humanitarian” cause. I vaguely recall him being interviewed over The “Satanic Verses” idiocy. He was asked about The Beards (a ZZ-Top tribute act) burning Salman Rushdie in effigy in Bradford*. He said his only regret was that it was, “only in effigy”. What a twat.

I have a “feory” about the Salman Rushdie thing… I think The Beards had it in for him before Satanic Verses. Midnight’s Children sticks the boot into Islam and Pakistan quite viciously and justifiably. But I don’t think they were gonna act on that because it tops it with a (well-deserved) kicking of Indira Gandhi.

And I’m damn glad they knighted Mr Rushdie. He’s a hell of a writer and anything that increases the discomforture of The Beards is a Good Thing.

*A town worse than Leeds if that is possible. The worst town in the World though is Siloth in Cumbria. It narrowly pips a place I went to once in Portugal the name of which I forget. Siloth is in some sort of strange time-warp. It’s eternally 1952 and two minutes before opening time in Siloth. It is ghastly on so many levels and the inhabitants are the least friendly bastards I have ever met and undeniably they are all inbred.

(Stolen shamelessly from The Cynical Dragon. A highly recommended daily read.)

Pearls of Wisdom

I will offer a choice, not an echo.

Senator Barrie Goldwater

Anyone want to quote this to Call me Dave?


Kylie Minogue’s advertisement for lingerie firm Agent Provocateur, in which she rides a mechanical bull, has been voted the best cinema commercial of all time.

Ya reckon… I have previously posted this and then removed it because the Aussie thought I was obsessed with the Melbourne poppit. Well, fuck it! I am. She’s well fit. Here she is…


If you don’t own at least American IV then for shame…

At least.

You think Bob Dylan did it for you… Think again. In my lifetime America has had two Gods. Cash is one of them. Eastwood is the other.

Believe it or not that was a date-movie for me.

That is America. That is my America. That is the country I love.

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