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May, 2010:

How many people has it killed so far?

A bit of honesty at last maybe?

The member reportedly said it may not even be possible for the panel to agree upon a consensus view

But, but, but, but – There’s a CONSENSUS…….

A spokesman from the Royal Society declined to respond, saying: "We will be issuing a release about this later on. It will be based on fact rather than speculation."

HAHAHAHAHAHA

That’ll make a nice change.

Pearls of (lefty) wisdom

On post Bismarkian Germany:

"They passed beyond the liberty of the individual to do as he pleased with his own property and found it necessary to check this liberty for the benefit of the freedom of the whole people,"

Franklin Delano Roosevelt (1912)

Question Time

Licence fee payers rightly insist that the BBC must be free from political interference.

(…)

the Tories have gone all cocky and decided they can start to dictate the terms on which impartial broadcasters go about their business.

Impartial broadcasters?

Really?

The LibCons can set whatever conditions they wish. The BBC has no obligation to take a blind bit of notice, but don’t start insulting my intelligence with the rest of this high minded drivel.

BBC? Impartial my arse.

Norks

the Association for the Study of Songun Politics UK abbreviates itself to ASSPUK. I suspect nothing more really needs to be said. Except they are regarding their sinking of a RoK corvette as an “act of war” by the South. There is gonna have to be a reckoning and it shall not be pretty. Though the result will be inevitable because civilisation always wins. At least I hope so.

And I have a Samsung telly to prove it. Stuff from the North of the DMZ…. Yeah, right, whatever.

Ed Balls

Edward Balls is the last of the contenders for the leadership of Her Majesty’s Loyal Opposition.

I have left him to last because I want to use cuss-words about Balls.

A lot of them.

He is clearly an epic cunt – a profound example of a truly accomplished actor in the cunticular arts. A less savvy blogger than I might say that rather than being the leader of the Labour Party he ought to have his testicular substances gradually crushed. The more astute amongst you will have clocked his bulging eyes and realised this has already happened. Undoubtedly it is more fun than screwing Yvette Cooper but then so is dredging turds from the Manchester Ship Canal.

Ed Balls is the most profound cunt I have ever had the misfortune to come across. There are things – things – scuttling along the bottom of the Mariana Trench on raggedy claws that aren’t as low as Ed Balls. I only put off giving Balls a kick to his low-hanging fruit for so long because it’s almost cruel (but I am cruel). I mean he just can’t help himself can he? He was born a cunt and has only become more of a cunt over time. It is sad but inevitable for cuntishness is, alas, one of those diseases that is sadly progressive and there is no known cure or even treatment beyond the judicious application of a 2×4.

And that only brings temporary, symptomatic relief to the dispenser. Alas.

Ed Balls is so low he’d need a step-ladder to bugger a dachshund.

That is just how low the verifiably cunticulated fuck-bugler is.

I hope he wins for that shall bury the Labour Party for all time.

Jeremy Irons Is A Complete Arsehole.

The world is becoming so overpopulated that nature will one day wreak its revenge, claims Jeremy Irons, the actor.

The crap actor. I only saw one movie with him I liked and he got chinned in that one by Bruce Willis – as it ought to be. Anyway, he’s entirely replaceable with Alan Rickman for being Bruced.

Launching himself as a green campaigner, Irons has revealed plans to make a documentary about sustainability and waste disposal, likening himself to Michael Moore, the controversial film maker, although “not as silly”.

That tramp’s mate Moore! Oh, be still my splitting sides! “Not as silly” – setting the bar a little low for yourself there aren’t you Jeremy? Sticking a bassoon up your arse and farting the theme from “Crossroads” would be less silly than anything that scruffy fat cunt ever put on film. Why not adopt the stage name “Woodwind” and see what Ant & Dec think on “Britain’s got Twats”? You shall make less of a fool of yourself.

The increasing global population would put an intolerable strain on the world’s resources, Irons said, and the gulf between developing countries and westerners living a bountiful “pie-in-the-sky” existence must be addressed.

Jeremy Irons has seven homes.

“One always returns to the fact that there are just too many of us, the population continues to rise and it’s unsustainable,” he said in an interview with The Sunday Times. “I think we have to find ways where we’re not having to scrap our effluent junk and are a really sustainable planet.”

Such as perhaps only having six homes Jeremy?

Natural systems of self regulation may stop population growth, he said: “I suspect there’ll be a very big outbreak of something because the world always takes care of itself.”

Jeremy suspects so we must all be afraid. I personally am hording canned goods and digging a hole in the garden for some reason. Samuel Pepys buried his whole Parmesan cheese in the back garden when he saw the Great Fire of London and no surprise there because last I checked the stuff was about 18 quid a kilo at TESCO.

He is seeking funding for a film on sustainability, which he hopes will be in the manner of An Inconvenient Truth, the Oscar-winning Al Gore documentary on climate change.

Oh, Jesus Q Chriscringle on a hybrid powered tricycle! But note the new tilt. Climate change is just so last decade darling! Various munters are muntering on about biodiversity and now population is rearing it’s ugly head again. Green is just a form of puritanism and it will use whatever scare it can muster. It’s like Victorian moralists causing a panic over masturbation.

The 61-year-old actor went on to speculate that either disease or war, “probably disease”, could become nature’s way of halving the population.

Quoth the leading authority on epidemiology. “Jeremy Irons Speculates” – it ought to be on Channel 4 after “Come Dine With Me”.

“We’ll be pulling in a lot of expert opinion and we are in talks for funding,” said Irons. “We hope it will be a movie.”

Oh… Magic. I can’t wait.

The actor, who says he is apolitical although he is a former Labour donor and his wife Sinead Cusack is “deeply socialist”, has already made a plea for action in a short video for an organisation campaigning to end world hunger.

There are things costing half a million quid at the end of beds in ICU called kidney machines that take less piss than Irons.

In a film on the website 1billionhungry.org, Irons declares: “People around the world suffer hunger — 1 billion. Now that’s bad, worse than bad, that’s crazy! We’ve got to get mad. I want you to get mad. I want you to get up right now, stick your head out of the window and yell, ‘I’m mad as hell’.”

You said it Jeremy. And out of which of the windows of which of your seven homes will you be yelling Jeremy? Don’t get me wrong here – I’m not a believer in the fixed wealth fallacy – but Irons clearly is so he is a stinking hypocrite by even his own standards.

“In the West we tend to have smaller families anyway, but in developing countries we need to offer as much technology and medical aid as possible. Whether that can happen before some natural disaster kicks in, we’ll have to see.”

Sterilise the nig-nogs then is it Jezza? I don’t have any kids so when do I get my Merit Badge?

The grimmer alternative, says Irons, is to continue to inflate the richer western economies to bursting point at the expense of poorer nations: “We would have to ringfence those who are starving and fighting over water, keeping everybody out. We’d live in a sort of fortress world, with an area which is fine, with its guarded oil pipe coming from Afghanistan or wherever, but I can’t see that working.”

The ultimate solution, he says, is for us all to live less decadently — growing our own food and recycling instead of replacing goods: “People must drop their standard of living [so] the wealth can be spread about. There’s a long way to go.”

Jeremy Iron’s seven homes include a pink castle in Ireland and he’s telling us to live less “decadently”. Note the explicit fixed wealth fallacy as well. This world is over-populated and Jeremy Irons is a patent example of the sort of well-chiseled twatter we could very easily live without. Of course he is protected because his missus is “deeply socialist” and he is a philosopher-king of the New World Order. Prince Charles is similarly deluded. The point at which I realised that Chuckles was not just mad but a truly evil virtouso upon Shatner’s rusty oboe was when he grabbed his Granny’s gaff after she popped her clogs in hock to the bookies and the gin merchants (that’s how I wanna go) because just having Highgrove would have meant he was “living above the shop”. The sheer unbelievable fucking arrogance of that is awesome. I mean Clarence House is a pretty cool crash-pad for when you’re in London – you utterly unbelievable cunt Chuckles. Yes, that’s the same Chuckles who has praised Islam for it being contra Western “decadence”. That’s fucking easy to say when you have two palaces (we shall gloss over his bizarre desire to be an ugly woman’s tampon for we all know where they end-up – well I do from an A-Level marine biology field trip). Anyway the grim “anti-materialism” of Islam is only paradise postponed to some sort of Vegas knocking-shop in the sky.

Don’t get me wrong. I have nothing against the rich per se. I think it’s pretty cool that Lakshmi Mittal could hire Versailles for his daughter’s wedding. I’m not even citing Mr Mittal because he is self-made but simply because I have never heard Mittal pronounce from on high about how average Joes like me ought to be using less stuff or having fewer kids. It really is the road to serfdom that Irons, Gore, Chuckles and all the rest of them point the way to and that with epic cunts like them as our feudal overlords.

Welcome to the endarkening. We had a reasonable innings.

And we could have been so magnificent.

Do not ever forget that they do this without sacrificing anything themselves or that they can only say this because they are simultaneously nucking futters and truly profound cunts.

Andy, John & Dave

Sounds like a sixties folk group? You know the sort – sitting on high stools with a finger in one ear putting out sub-dylanesque warblings in grainy black and white. They have three fans left who now all live in a yurt in Wiltshire and speak very slowly due to having spent decades whacked out of their gourds.

Andy Burnham of course was responsible for this:

The Daily Telegraph’s revelation of expenses claims by Members of Parliament showed that Burnham was embroiled in a prolonged battle with the House of Commons Fees Office over the £16,644 cost of renovations and work on a London flat he was buying. The claims, which included a new kitchen, had been repeatedly rejected. Burnham had written three notes asking for the money to be paid, including one at Christmas 2005 which claimed “Otherwise I might be in line for divorce!”

And this:

250,000 women, some of them cancer patients, were sent a leaflet featuring a message from a breast cancer survivor who praised Labour’s health policy. The cards asked: “Are the Tories a change you can afford?”. Both the Tories and the Liberal Democrats called this tasteless, and the Tories have stressed the fact that they actually are calling for more funding for the NHS. Both the Tories and the Liberal Democrats have accused the Labour Party of misuse of NHS data to “blink out” cancer patients. Andy Burnham, the health secretary, said: “It is categorically incorrect to imply that we targeted cancer sufferers, and we regret if any offence or anxiety was given to people who have suffered cancer. “But we make no apology for highlighting the difference between Labour and the Conservatives on cancer care

Of course they were targetted. It’s callous and nasty and smacks of the tactics of a protection racket. It was also politically stupid because iDave was doing his level best to say how strongly he believed in the NHS and Tory policy was to increase NHS funding. Andy just on those two you fail. Next!

John McDonnell is basically an old skool leftie agitator.

…he serves as Chair of the Socialist Campaign Group, the Labour Representation Committee, and the “Public Services Not Private Profit Group“. He is also Parliamentary Convenor of the Trade Union Coordinating Group of eight left-wing trade unions representing over half a million workers.

Quite how one can have public services without someone making a profit to tax clearly escapes the tiny mind of Mr McDonnell. McDonnell is paleo-Labour and we can forget about him as we enter an age of corporate cronyism where profit is fine as long as you sing from the government hymnal.

Milliband Major. I honestly can’t think of much to say except handing him the FCO was almost Brown’s final insult to the nation. Surely someone with a hint of gravitas should represent Britain on the world stage but no… We got that gurning loon. I don’t know what effect he had on the Iranians but he sure scared the hell out of me. For some reason this amuses me…

During the victory celebrations that took place a few weeks later, a burning effigy of Miliband was reported to have been tossed over the gate of the British High Commission in Colombo.

It would appear the Sri Lankans weren’t too keen on him either then.

OK, time to sum up. I recall when I was a kid talking to my Dad about politics and the weird hours the House of Commons kept. He explained that so many of them were lawyers and that those hours enabled them to do both jobs. Now, I’m not sure it’s a good idea to have lawyers legislating but they are surely better than what the three aforementioned gentlemen are for they are politicians by training. With the single exception of MacDonnell who worked “unskilled jobs” for six years, partially whilst doing night school A-Levels to prepare himself for a career in politics, none of them have had a job outside of politics. Just look at their qualifications and their CVs. Professional meddlesome ratbags the lot of ‘em.

Now I bet you’re expecting me to comment on their lack of “real world experience”. That might be a factor but the real point is that it demonstrates to me the extent to which, by becoming a career in itself, politics has become utterly self-serving and entirely about itself. A really vibrant democracy would have representatives from all walks of life: soldiers, sailors and cake decorators. Instead what we have is politics as a profession in the same way dentistry or civil engineering is. You get the appropriate qualifications (OK I’ll admit Andy Burnham’s degree is in Eng Lit which is a blessed relief from the litany of political “science” degrees) and then you work your way up. Perhaps somebody ought to remind these folks of the etymology of the word “democracy” because the serpent is devouring it’s tail. Well, that’s the high falutin’ way of putting it because I think I’ve worn the mass debate joke a little thin of late.

Help

I got a job on designing a website for an artist. It needs two things to be easily user alterable. The first is the pictures in the galleries and the second is the list of up and coming exhibitions. I’ve only ever done websites over which I had control and I’m not scared of getting down and dirty with the HTML myself so I have no idea of content management stuff. Any ideas?

NB This is not an ecommerce site. It’s just pictures in three galleries (editable) and events list (editable), a front page (fixed), contacts (fixed) and about (fixed).

Any help gratefully appreciated.

Martin Gardner 1914-2010

I just heard that Martin Gardner died yesterday.

I used to love his Mathematical Games in some old copies of Scientific American I acquired. Well I say “love” but usually they tormented me. Due to a piece by him on fractals I taught myself complex arithmetic which was the thin end of a slippery slope that ended in a physics degree. That’s your fault Martin and I’m sure I’m very far from the only one to blame you for something similar!

Gardner was not a towering figure in Twentieth Century recreational mathematics – he was Twentieth Century recreational mathematics. He was also a debunker of pseudoscience and the paranormal as well as a writer on (amongst other things) philosophy and literature – especially the works of Lewis Carroll. His splendid annotations of the Alice books are a constant pleasure.

Professor Gardner let you rest in the peace you denied the rest of us and for many a “wasted” afternoon I thank you!

Here’s a very small collection of some of Martin Gardener’s most famous puzzles. Have fun!

Instructions

Had to go to Sainsburys today. Get stuff for a BBQ and also a new microwave. Well, on the way in they’ve erected new “road safety” signs. The quantity of signage on Britain’s roads and the ever varying speed limits surely cause accidents by being a constant distraction from, you know, the road and other traffic users and trifles like that.

Anyway we’ve now got:

BEWARE Pedestrians

It made me think of safari parks that did. You know where you have to keep the windows up and the baboons rip your wipers off.

Then there was:

Young Drivers THINK

I’m sure they do. Mainly about how bloody awful driving up the A6 is these days. Anyway what’s that meant to be about? Are you meant to think because there may be boy racers around or are the young drivers meant to think? Buggered if I know.

Finally there was:

Don’t become a statistic

Right, I’ll cite that when I tell them where they can shove their poxy census form next year.

So, get to Sainsburys and that’s OK. Decide on a microwave with grill and convection so we can replace the little oven that is bust (if there is one thing I’d change about this house it’s the itty bitty kitchen). It’s a Sanyo and once I unpack it and actually read the manual it’s very poorly translated which was a shocka for an outfit like Sanyo and the bloody thing is seriously complicated. It’s like trying to decipher someone else’s C++ code with the remarks in Serb-Croat. I shall get there eventually. Afterall I got Vista to work. Oh, and the Sainsbury’s trolley helpfully suggested that I use the small compartment at the front for “flowers or baguettes”. Alas no compartment for combi-ovens. They didn’t think of that did they?

Anyway, in the Sainsbury’s carpark there was the final bizarre sign of the day. This was on one of those hoppers for shoe recycling (what do they do with them?):

Attempting to climb into this bin may result in injury.

Anybody with a morbid desire to climb into a bin of discarded shoes gets what they deserve in my book. Who would want to do it anyway? Has anyone tried? Have security ever had to yank out the kicking legs of someone devoured by a recycling bin?

Sainsburys are offering 30x440ml cans of assorted beers and ciders (mix-and-match) for 18 quid. Not for much longer I fear. The thing that struck me is that nastiness will put a crimp on Christmas and wedding dos and all sorts for people – especially the poor. I hate these neopuritans. I guess it’s just the same reflexive meddling that resulted in those road signs being put up.

Ed & Diane

Ed Milliband:

Labour’s divisions over Iraq broke out into the open tonight, as Ed Milliband became the first contender for the leadership to make it an issue during the campaign. He said UN weapons inspectors were not given enough time in 2003 before coalition troops invaded, and asserted that the way in which Britain decided to go to war led to “a catastrophic loss of trust in Labour”

Got that? Not a dicky bird about the billions spent and all the dead and maimed. That doesn’t matter to Ed because “a catastrophic loss of trust in Labour” is what really counts. That is the true measure of the lesser Millipede. I shouldn’t be surprised because pretty much by definition a true proggy cares about the cause more than reality or people. That line is from the exact same playbook used by Muslim “community leaders” when, just post-atrocity, their first reaction is to fret about how they hope it won’t lead to a rise in Islamophobia.

Diane:

In 1996 Abbott was accused of racism when she suggested that “blonde, blue-eyed Finnish girls” in her local hospital in West London were unsuitable as nurses because they “may never have met a black person before”. Ms Abbott’s comments were supported by Bernie Grant*, a fellow black MP whose constituency, Tottenham, borders hers. “She is quite right,” he said. “Bringing someone here from Finland who has never seen a black person before and expecting them to have some empathy with black people is nonsense.”

Oh Dear Gods! Can you imagine if a white MP had said that about African nurses? Fortunately she was pwned on it:

Conservative MP Ian Bruce stated that he had “never heard such racist rubbish from a Member of Parliament in recent years”. Abbott was also accused of ignorance by the Anti-Racist Alliance executive member Marc Wadsworth, who is half-Finnish, pointed out that at that time the Miss Finland, Lola Odusoga, was black, of Nigerian and Finnish descent. “She’s a black Finn like me,” he said. Abbott apologized for her remarks and said her main priority was to ensure that her constituents received medical treatment from the very best people “irrespective of race”

“Main”, not “only” Diane?

Her decision in 2003 to send her son to the private £10,000 a year City of London School, which she herself described as “indefensible” and “intellectually incoherent”, caused controversy and was seen by some as hypocritical not least because she had previously criticised Tony Blair and Harriet Harman for sending their children to selective state schools. It later emerged that Abbott had applied to three private schools for her son.

Rank, blatant hypocrisy and arrogance.

Diane Abbott is a shameless cow who I’m sure believes herself special. She is also deeply, inherently, racist.

Ed Milliband is on the other hand so much the true believer and people’s commissar that he believes the most important consequence of a war was its effect on the reputation of the Labour Party. He is therefore unfit for any office outside a totalitarian state.

The rest… I might get round to them sometime. If I can summon the will but my point is that if two such people can seriously aspire to be leaders of a major party then the party they are standing for must surely be stuffed.

Surely the British people can see through Milliband’s “youthful good looks” (for that is how they shall spin it) and Abbott’s avuncular double act with Portillo? Surely?

*I had forgotten about that vicious rabble-rouser Bernie Grant.

Puritan Seeks Rent

More puritanical rent seeking reared its ugly head today, as oligarch Terry Leahy, boss of Tesco, called for more temperance laws including his pet favourite, price controls, in collaboration with chief temperance nutter Don Shenker, of course.

The selfish benefits Terry gets from this are obvious, but worth enumerating. He gets more money from selling beer at a higher price; his competitors are prevented from undercutting him by offering lower prices. He gets to look “moral”; he gets to say that he is doing something about the latest, well orchestrated, moral panic; so-called “binge drinking”. And in the process he helps to perpetrate the false consciousness upon which puritan campaigning depends- that is, that something which has always happened, in this case people getting pissed and sometimes causing bovver, is a brand new problem which is threatening to overwhelm and destroy civilisation.

Something else that depresses me about this is here on Leahy’s main Telegraph article. It has the inevitable, apparently obligatory, fat girls photo as illustration. The photo is there to represent a stereotype; it’s a pernicious form of propaganda. We are supposed to look at this photo and see the collapse of civilisation. The photos are always fat girls. Fat girls drinking.

Fat people represent excess (literally). They represent the out of control untermenschen who over-indulge and must be reined in. It is the mithering of the puritan class; capitalism gives people too much luxury and that is why they are “obese” (nobody’s ever chubby any more). And look, no class; they’re drinking! Drinking from the bottle! Drunks!

The idea that being drunk is fun is now verboten. You are still allowed to drink… in moderation. That is, you can have a little drink so long as you don’t become intoxicated. This is Britain. You’re not here to enjoy yourself. So the photo of three girls having a laugh comes to represent something else; the breakdown of the social fabric. The idea that these three lasses may just be having some fun at the end of a boring week’s work doesn’t enter into it. The mere fact that a photo which- on face value- shows some people enjoying themselves having a drink is used to illustrate an article calling for state measures to prevent them doing that shows just how perilously near to total puritanism we are.

The Libertarian Alliance have issued a press release decrying Leahy’s vintage whine and for a Tesco boycott. Good for them.

Whatever “civil” liberties the Coalitionistas may be offering us back, we need to be aware that the pressure on our private liberties, and particularly on using impoverishment as a means to control them, is going to be as least as intense, and probably more intense, than under NuLabour. In terms of puritanism, the combination of crusty conservatives and hardcore sandal wearers is likely to be toxic. “Binge Drinking” is an invented moral panic, but millions of people already believe it and will dutifully acquiesce to, and indeed support, this latest raid on our wallets. Tough times are ahead for personal liberty, I fear.

Synthia

So has Craig Ventor finally made the first steps into artificial life?

I don’t know because I only understand a bit of molecular biology and stuff.

But this looks like it’s going to be fun…

Of course, the usual suspects have crawled out of their yurts to raise Cain over geniis out of bottles, Pandora’s box, and playing God. Message to the Greenoluddomoralists – can you please, please for the love of all that is (un)holy invest in a new set of cliches.

If there is one thing that depresses me more than the anti-progress mob it’s the “carful nowers…” I saw some twonk on the BBC calling for “more government control” (worked for the economy eh?) and “broad-based committees”…

Look, Craig Venter does not cackle maniacally in a Bavarian Schloss surrounded by sparking Tesla coils and with an Igor cowering in the corner. He’s got his own research institute in California and it is his independence from the bioethicists and regulators and quangos that is the reason he has achieved things such as supercharging the human genome program. Ultimately these people do not understand science in two ways. The first is that they don’t understand the actual basic sciences and the second is they don’t understand the way science works. They are exactly the sort of people who if they thought something looked “promising” they’d set-up ever multiplying “steering groups” and nothing would get done. Can you imagine if the tribe had convened a mass debate when young Ugg started banging rocks together? We’d still be in cave which of course for some of these people is a feature and not a bug.

I mean they are still diligently blocking a lot of research on stem cells and the deployment (within the EU at least) of GM crops to keep the likes of the Prince of Wales happy.

Anyway, if anyone can get us to the bright sunlit uplands of a biotechnical future it’s Venter. Let’s hope Venter is onto something here and let’s hope they don’t stop him.

PS One final anti-science cliche – they’re meddling in things they don’t understand! Well, of course. That’s how you get to understand them!

We are in very good company

The Kitty Kounters have received their very first death threat:

Praise be to Allah who created the creation for his worship and commanded them to be just and permitted the wronged one to retaliate against the oppressor in kind. To proceed:

Peace be upon he who follows the guidance: With a sword of his vengeance we will strike down any who insult the great prophet. Infadels will be flung from their keyboards as the great martyr themselves, may Allah have mercy on them, at your datacentres. When your blades are in flames and your internets are no more we will descend upon you like a great plague and behead those who have brought this great injustice upon us.

And Allah is our Guardian and Helper, while you have no Guardian or Helper. All peace be upon he who follows the Guidance.

What do you think? Real? Or someone out there doing a piss take?

Nick/Ian, want to speak to the UK coppers about this? Threatening to strike at the neck is no laughing matter.

Threatening to kill us because we don’t accept we are bound by the injunctions of the Shariah is just that teensy little bit contrary to everything I have a shred of respect for.

Still, we are in very good company.

My Mohammed

I’d forgotten this is Everybody Draw Mohammed day, but as an artist of a kind it would be remiss not to participate, so I just scribbled this one…

Everybody Draw Mohammed

Everybody Draw Mohammed

If you don’t have the right to offend, you don’t have the right to speak.

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